Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Let’s Talk Addictions

I was blessed to be born without a propensity for addiction. (My first husband was the opposite sort, so I’m fairly familiar with the traits of an addictive personality.) So I’m a poor candidate for alcoholism, obsessive gambling, chronic shoplifting, and their ilk.

But those of us resistant to those hardcore kinds of addictions still have our little, fairly harmless ones. When you get right down to it, all of us have some things we’d really rather not have to live without.

Dr. House has Vicodin, David Duchovy has (had?) sex, Mythbusters Jamie and Adam have blowing-stuff-up.

My daughter Katie has hanging-on-to-things, my other daughter Manzi has Hitchcock movies, my husband has talk radio.

Our cats Selke, Alice and Cody have, respectively, scraps of paper, fleece clothing (to eat, not wear), and salad dressing.

And me? Well, here’s my current top ten list of addictions:

10. Olives (all colors).
9. 80’s music.
8. Guys with blond beards.
7. Tracking my web traffic and book sales.
6. Anything written by Neil Gaiman.
5. Potato chips.
4. Watching old “House, MD” episodes.
3. Cubs baseball (six months of withdrawal, coming right up!).
2. The Internet.
1. Writing about love and sex.
Happily for me, it would seem that reading about love and sex is on a lot of people’s Top Ten Addictions lists. This past week I saw that happen in a couple of interesting ways.

First of all, there’s my Google Books tracking. (Yeah, I warned you about me and tracking!) I get reports every day on how many of my books are viewed on Google Books, that neat new service that lets you search by word through bizillions of books. I also get reports on the number of pages viewed. Now a person can’t read every page in a book on Google books, but from the tracking I can tell that a lot of people do a search, find one of my collections, and end up reading all the pages Google Books lets you. The average person reads five to fifteen pages.

Google Books doesn’t tell me the search terms, but I can just imagine, based on the terms that lead people to my website and this blog. So...some person is google-book-searching on “candlelight bound slave auction” or “erotic she was brought from the harem to the king's quarters” or “rain shelter blanket arousal nipple” (I swear, these are terms people have actually used to find me). And she or he turns up one of my books, and reads a page. And keeps reading, for fifteen minutes till the Google preview ends. Aha! Hooked!

Secondly, I had a really fun, rare experience this past week. Someone bought my book Bloodchained in ebook format from my online store one night. The next day she bought Soulful Sex Volume I. Two days later she bought Soulful Sex: The Fantasy Collection. This woman is one fast reader! And imagine how I feel to find someone can’t wait another day to read another of my books! A person could get addicted to that feeling pretty easily. LOL

Well, I guess for the truly-not-addictive personalities like most of us, there’s a fine line between enjoyment and wanting not to go more than 24-hours without the thing. You gotta try not to let the latter get the better of you when it matters. But most days, it’s not a big problem if I watch a couple episodes of “House” while eating a few chips...and it’s never a problem if I want to write about love and sex.


cc said...

I am EXTREMELY pleased to see that your #1 addiction is producing more books to feed my addiction to reading your stories. :-)

Diana Laurence said...

Aw...aren't you sweet, CC? Hey, it's like a symbiotic relationship. :-)