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Catalysts are by nature volatile. They are like winds of change and can blow in diverse, sometimes surprising directions. Since the release of E. L. James' Fifty Shades Trilogy, the buzz around the books has not significantly declined. Fans and foes have continued to express their thoughts since the first installment of this erotic romance series, 'Fifty Shades of Grey' came out in 2011. Now it is being adapted into a movie due for release summer 2014.

So, how has the 'Fifty Shades of Grey' fared in the face of all the criticisms from literary and academic experts? I would say that it has remained unaffected. The large following it has garnered has kept it at the top of the bestseller list.

One thing that has caught my attention in all the excitement is the emergence of several other similar titles ranging from Fifty Shades of Green/White/Vegetables to Fifty Shades of Wine.

What's there not to like?

I would like to think that with the preponderance of similar titles all over the place, the Fifty Shades Trilogy has inspired some writers to be more productive.

Perhaps too, it has motivated some people who are not into reading fiction to do so. But is the trilogy a worthy source of that motivation? It depends on who you talk to.

A downside which is mostly ignored or regarded by some as crying wolf is the negative effect the book might have on some readers. The explicit nature of  some scenes has been greatly criticized because it may lead to some negative outcomes for society, considering, for example, how underage children have easy access to adult books these days. Is this one more addition to adult materials parents don't want their children reading or watching on the television?

We must acknowledge that erotic romance is a booming genre in the society today and the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a testament to that. It has inspired some writers who  previously were  not courageous to write within that genre, to begin to comfortably do so.

I surmise then that the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a catalyst of sorts. Its versatility speaks for itself - as illustrated above.

As a writer, what kind of change do you want your book to bring about in your readers? What kind of effect do you hope your book would have on the readers?

As a reader, what are your motivations for reading a particular book or genre? What kind of feelings did the best books you have read bring out in you?

Happy Reading! Happy Writing!


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