I was standing up there at Christopher Barzak's inaugural Youngstown Reading Series event, reading from the novel, and breaking out in a cold sweat. It was easy with The Orphan's Tales--who doesn't like a fairy tale? Even if it's dark and violent, it still hits most people's spots, because we know how to hear fairy tales.
But I've never had to read sex scenes in front of strangers before now. It's brutal. I even picked the straight, vanilla sex and it's brutal. I've read the lesbian scenes a couple of times, and those are even harder.
It's like waving my arms and announcing: hey, here's all my kinks! Please, peruse and judge them!
So all of the sudden I'm nervous before readings again. I shake, I sweat. I don't want to be that naked. Even if people don't realize that's a naked woman up there, trying not to let her voice quiver.
I wonder if I'll get used to it.