In Part 1, I wrote about the titles and general description of my work in this genre.
In Part 2, I moved on to how I found myself venturing into this area of creative writing.
I’d like to use this final article to go under the covers ….
In the wake of Romance, the Erotica genre is the next big thing – in regard to sales. For this reason alone, it’s not surprising writers of other genres attempt erotica, and it might be why their trials are published with a pseudonym.
Many writers try producing this special genre. Having read widely in the indie and the traditionally published sectors, I’ve discovered a wide range of ability.
We all think we know what goes on behind closed doors, but how much of our ‘knowledge’ is actually supposition, imagination, or guesswork?
The first aspect of this topic to put to bed (pun intended), is about how wonderful other people’s sex lives are. We could look at examples, but in reality there are too many variables to examine sex life.
I’ll list a few examples to prove the point:
1. A person who has no sexual experience, but has read a few books which suggest sex should be enjoyed by anybody with anybody, doing anything. I remember a girl from my early 20’s who earned the nickname ‘Martini’. If you’re not old enough to remember the TV ad, the slogan was: ‘any time, any place, anywhere ….’
2. A person of limited sexual experience, but read widely, and is eager to try anything once.
3. A person who enjoys the early years of marriage, where there has been an occasional hot night between the sheets. Lifestyle calmed and the bedroom became a place for two things; frustration, or boredom – or both.
4. An older person who has been in a relationship for 50 years, had a lot of varied experiences before marriage, and has for far too long settled into a mundane ‘get it over with’ mindset.
5. A person in a long-term relationship, but is with a partner who has no desire to ‘experiment’. Opportunities may not have been taken when younger, and now one partner may spend time wondering about activities found in books, but never tried.
What must a writer consider when publishing erotica?
Instead of producing a text-book answer, I’ll list a few of my personal criteria.
1. It is erotica, but it should not only be about the sex – a plot should exist.
2. I avoid sexual taboos, which I don’t believe have to be listed. If you have any doubts what is considered ‘taboo’ in erotic literature – use a search engine.
3. Colloquialisms for body parts and activities read better than creating a biology lesson with an underlying story.
4. Consent – or a fair idea of what is ahead is my preference. If a character sounds as if they didn’t know what they were getting into – or what was getting into them – it’s not non-consensual or innocence; it’s naivity.
5. Exceptional hygiene standards and preparation are occasionally mentioned in passing.
I have other minor points I keep in mind, but the aforementioned are the main ones.
Which erotica appeals to me?
I enjoy the tale if I find myself consumed by the story, embracing the characters (metaphorically), and reading for the story – not the genre.
Which erotica irritates or alienates me?
When the language used is stilted, and the body parts and activities are like a sex education class for those who speak English as a second language.
When the situation and dialogue is contrived and the ‘story’ goes from dialogue to action in an unrealistic time scale.
Two-dimensional characters usually combined with little or no back-story.
Where do I go from here with my titles?
Highland Games is the series title of my erotica novellas. My first tale is an introduction to the series and the main location. In each successive book I aim to explore a different aspect of sexuality. As I do with all of my work, I’ll be taking note of feedback, and I’ll adjust my writing if there is good reason.
Thank you for taking the time to read my posts, and particular thanks to those of you kind enough to leave your thoughts. I appreciate all feedback.
As a reward for your kindness, I’ll remind you my novel, Give & Take: A Tale of Erotica is FREE on Amazon over the weekend Saturday 30th July / Sunday 31st July 2016.