If Jude is reading this, I don’t doubt she will remember some of the fun (and the titillating pictures) we had on the Darker Pleasures website.
Jude had actually scored me the gig at Darker Pleasures. When the editor said he was looking for ‘damned good’ writers Jude kindly put my name forward. I don’t know whether she thought I was ‘good’ or just ‘damned.’
The remit was usually simple: make a story that fits with a collection of BDSM pictures the editor had stored on the site. The stories already incorporated an erotic theme and included some characters. Our job was to simply add a little bit of story to give a sense of narrative flow to the images.
Of course, not all the stories were accompanied by pictures. And, it was whilst we were discussing the scope that this left us, that Jude and I decided to work together on a story. In short, this was when Jude took my collaborating virginity. Rest assured, dear reader, she was gentle with me.
I have to admit, as experiences go, I enjoyed the challenge of writing with a partner. Everything that has been said so far this week is absolutely right. It’s a different writing experience when you’re working to accommodate and adjust to another author’s style. It can be faster, more immediate, and more rewarding. In our situation there was an onus to produce work of the highest calibre so that we weren’t forcing each other to stumble over poorly constructed sentences or clumsy content. There was also something of an unspoken challenge to try and be a little more innovative or unusual.
Co-authoring isn’t something I’ve done often but I have to recommend the experience. As well as reminding a writer about the importance of striving for the highest standard, it’s a pleasure to occasionally break the mould of the lonely practice of writing. In addition, the immediate feedback from a respected colleague is invaluable. And, the biggest bonus of all: if another reader says they don’t like part of your story, it’s always possible to place the blame for that portion of the narrative on your writing partner.