Friday, September 4, 2015

Diiiiirty...

It was really interesting reading Giselle’s post yesterday. Her experiences seem to be very much in sync with my own.
I, too, started publishing in 2006, though to look at my back catalog you wouldn’t know it. I also wrestled with the idea of going smutty and had a voice of protest in the back of my head insisting I could keep it literary, and hot, AND have the readers coming in droves. I’ve moved in circles with many of the folks who started smutty and then expanded to the more romantic genres. Plenty of them are really kicking arse, these days. Others have been only moderately successful, though in comparison to my own performance, still pretty durn amazing.
I missed the gravy train, for whatever that might be worth. And I tend to kick myself quite often, simply because I have tons of smutty ideas I never wrote. Smart-arse titles that straddle the line between porn and erotica, and which would at least raise a smile, if not a cock. As authors we often complain that readers can’t separate the writer from the story. Clearly I was struggling with that same beastie.
Though I only have three solo titles out at the moment, I’ve published many more. I just have an annoying habit of un-publishing them with a view to re-working, and then getting snowed under with more ideas.
And the more ideas I get, the smuttier they become. To me, this is a good thing.
Despite how visually permissive our world has become, there’s still an element of taboo and naughtiness in the writing of dirty stories. And let’s not make any bones (heh) about it, what we’re writing is dirty, even if it’s a sweet erotic romance.
Still, though, I wrestle with how smutty to make them, and I’m certain that comes from having grown up in a society which was still determined to paint women as either princesses or whores, and never the twain shall meet. I’m certain that when I try to make my work dirty, or even seditious, I end up holding back because I grew up still being told that women “don’t like it”. Not so much by my family, which was neither actively open nor closed about sexual matters, just ambivalent. It was more from school, and extended family, and probably just my own young brain’s interpretation of “the rules”.
Of course, I’ve since learned that many women like it dirty. And I mean really dirty. The kind of fiction I don’t know if I could even read, let alone write. Again, because of those same values which were instilled, or which I inferred.
Having said all that, my next works will actually be a sweet and daffy series of shifter stories. A three-parter, more romantic comedy than smut, but just keeping the bedroom door wide open.
I have plenty of darkness in my head and in my life to draw on. One day, perhaps. For now, I’m keeping it light.

But still dirty, of course.

13 comments:

  1. As long as the ideas keep coming. No pun.

    You can always make a scene sexier. As for women and erotica, I always believed there were women who thought dirty like I did, managed to run into a few along the way, but I do wish I'd met some female erotica writers before this decrepit old age. :>)

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    1. I know, right!? Nothing sexier than a dirty mind.

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  2. If you need inspiration I volunteer as tribute. ;-)

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    1. See what I mean? Diiiirty minds! Damn sexy!

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  3. If you need inspiration I volunteer as tribute. ;-)

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  4. I used to wonder if I was "normal" when I read that men think about sex every minute or so, and I laughed, because there have been times in my life where I never got a minute in-between thinking about how horny I was, and how much I wanted to bang every man around me. I've always had close women friends, and most of them told me I was weird. But there have been a few female friends I've made along the path of life, who also admitted to being as smitten with male flesh as most men are with females (or other males.)

    I also laugh at how straight men tend to denigrate themselves as "brutish" and "gross." I love how hairy they are...how sweaty they get. I love their broad shoulders, tiny nipples, and veined arms. I love their tight butts and their hairy, bulgy legs. I love how their faces have that stubble that scrapes against my skin, and I especially love it between my thighs! Phew!

    So no matter that you think only smooth, curvy bodies are sexy, dude, to me, everything you dislike about yourself and other men, is just what I fantasize about. Women aren't visual?? This one sure as hell is! But I also love to read and write smut. And watch it. And think about it.

    For the record, I never wanted to be the "princess." I've always been okay with being called "whore." If that means I like sex a whole lot, it's totally accurate. And those are the kind of female characters I write.

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    1. "So no matter that you think only smooth, curvy bodies are sexy, dude, to me, everything you dislike about yourself and other men, is just what I fantasize about."

      I definitely DO think smooth, curvy bodies are sexy, but I've never said "only"!

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  5. I still struggle with trying to understand at what point explicitly sexy becomes "dirty,' but I guess it's too subjective to define. There are drawbacks to having been raised not to think of sex as dirty (but to be aware of its pitfalls.) In any case, I hope my sex scenes come across as dirty enough to appeal to readers. As a reader and editor, though, I do admit to favoring plot and character and erotic tension over bare-bones sex--except when the latter is really, really well-written.

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  6. ...hard to say that with a straight face when the book cover next to my comment is Sweet Lesbian Love Stories. heh

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    1. But the thing Greta Christina taught me is that sweet and dirty can be one and the same! I'll never get over the revelation I had reading the "sweet" section of her collection "Bending." The stories absolutely were sweet, but they were so refreshing because they didn't conform to a narrow definition of what sweet is and who's allowed to experience it.

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  7. Don't hold back, Willsin!

    Actually, when we censor ourselves in our stories, it shows. You can feel that something is missing, not right. There's an emotional or narrative gap.

    As for women not liking it dirty, there's a very wide range of preferences in both men and women. Long ago I realized that I can't please everyone. However, I think there will always be at least a small audience for my work.

    And damn it, don't waste your time reworking a published book! That's very nearly a sign that you're reluctant to move forward and publish your next one.

    (Lecture over. But I'm older than you, so I've got the right to give advice ;^))

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