Divas Read Banned Books

by Jo O’Neil

Divas read banned booksOur editor-in-chief, Patricia V. Davis, is the author of three published books and counting. Like any other author today, she knows the importance of marketing her own work, and so when The Diva Doctrine: 16 Universal Principles Every Woman Needs to Know came out, she immediately began to promote the title to women’s empowerment books groups and organizations. Though the response for the most part was positive, she was surprised that several more liberal-leaning groups turned down the opportunity to review the book and it was only recently that she discovered why. “I asked my publicist to pitch to a group that had invited me to speak in the past, and I suppose it was because they didn’t have to deal with me directly that they confessed the reason they were turning me down, and that it was the reason I’d been getting turned down in some other quarters. And when I learned what that reason was, I had to laugh, because I thought it was such a quirk of fate.”

The organizer of the group told the publicist, “Look, we love Patricia’s work, and we loved Harlot’s Sauce. So we’re sure we’d love The Diva Doctrine, too. But we just can’t bring ourselves to promote a book that was published by a Mormon publisher. They’re so anti-gay.”

The fact that this discovery was made during Banned Books Week is not lost on Patricia and her publicist, but the irony is even more singular than that. When Peter Beren, the literary agent who Patricia signed with to sell The Diva Doctrine informed her that Cedar Fort wanted to buy her book, she asked him if they knew that she was a gay rights advocate. (Cedar Fort is a mid-size publisher out of Utah that has several imprints, some for mainstream readers and some for the LDS market. The Diva Doctrine is published by their Bonneville Books imprint.)

Beren’s reply was, “They know exactly who you are and they’re fine with it.”

Says Patricia, “The only ‘censorship’ there was from Cedar Fort was that they asked, (very politely I might add) that I change the word ‘assh*le’ I’d used in the manuscript to something less harsh.”

One other request had to do with changing the sentence “drinking cosmos” to “drinking lemonade” and Patricia was fine with that too. “The editor gave me a very good reason. She honestly believed that it was such an important book for women that she wanted all her Mormon friends to read it, and she didn’t want them to be put off by the possibility that it might have some things in it that are against Mormon beliefs. I could certainly understand that and was only too happy to help. But life is truly stranger than fiction. I’m a gay rights supporter whose book on empowering women is being shunned by liberal groups because it was published by a Mormon publisher.”


Read the Yahoo! News article about The Diva Doctrine Ban here:  http://news.yahoo.com/harlots-write-great-books-divas-read-banned-books-070811800.html

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