by Kathleen Bradean
I can't think of anything I've written that's about the sacred or the profane. I suppose writing erotica might count if I thought it was an evil pursuit, but as a character observed in the movie Enchanted April, it's awfully hard to be improper when there are no men around. Or in my case, it's difficult to be wicked when you don't take your critics seriously.
What is it about explicit sex that gets everyone so tense?
There's a literary prize for the worst sex scenes. It's like that squinty, perpetually frowning girl on the playground who lived to tattle on her schoolmates. If she couldn't put a stop to the shenanigans, she'd pace and fret one step outside the scene, ready to point the finger of blame. It wasn't because she secretly longed to be invited to join the others. Nothing upset her more than the idea that they were having fun and getting away with it. Sometimes I feel there's a cadre of writers like that. They don't want to write explicit sex, which is fine, but they don't want anyone else to either, which isn't. So they pick out a few lines from a novel and hold that out of context passage up to ridicule, perhaps hoping shame will stop people from writing about sex.
Why isn't there a prize for best sex scenes? Probably because few people in the English speaking world want to admit that such a thing can exist. Imagine the humiliation if your peers thought you nominated a scene because it turned you on instead of the criteria being good writing. Oh, the horror! A piece of writing so powerful it made your cock or cunt respond! *staggers to her fainting couch*
We simply can't let that happen, can we? People treating sex like just another thing people do instead of partitioning it off in its own special world where it can be safely mocked? Egads. Next thing you know, I'll be demanding that people actually read erotica before condemning it. I'm a mad woman, I tell you. Insane! Literary critique coming from a place of knowledge rather than ignorance? The lit crowd would have a fit of the vapors, the poor dears.
Oh dear. I'm being a bit ranty, but I've had about enough of this nonsense about erotica being bad writing, worthless, and a bastard genre. It may be difficult to be improper when you don't believe in impropriety, but I'm sure it's even harder to be a sanctimonious prat when the rest of the playground points their fingers and laughs at your priggish ass. Be warned - that's exactly what I intend to do from now on.