Saturday, December 8, 2018

Sacrifices & Impact of Writing Erotica

What goes on inside the head of a writer? The answer is simple: lots of things. Some of us hear the voices of our characters, some of us worry about deadlines, and sometimes we freak out when our personal and writing lives don't mesh. But let's go deeper. What does writing really do to our lives and relationships, especially with erotic writers. The negative stigma surrounding sex in modern culture can have an enormous impact, but sometimes, the positive outweighs the negative.

Here are what multiple erotica and romance writers had to say:

Has writing erotica made positive or negative changes to your personal life? 


“Writing erotica has been a definite positive, mostly because of the people I've met as a result of writing what I do. I'm having lunch with other erotic/erotica authors this week.” –Nia Farrell 

“Both, actually, but I'll save the negative for the next question. :) On the positive side, the practice of writing - of engaging beta readers, of talking to reviewers, and hearing from readers - along with being part of a community, has made me a better writer and a happier, more confident one. I don't feel so alone anymore. There really is somebody on the other side of that keyboard.”—Sally Bend 

“I began writing erotica for my wife. We’d been married 30 years at the time and I wrote for no other reason than to turn her on. She loved the first story and offered a scenario that still fuels our books. These fantasies have only enhanced our own sex lives so that would be a big positive change. For the other side of the coin, see question 2.” –JF Silver 

“I'm not sure it has made a difference among my friends. I have several who have worked for companies that either import Japanese hentai doujins or work in the translation of Japanese eroge (erotic games) for the English market. Among my family, I don't tell. several close people to me wouldn't be happy.”—Reed James 

“Both. Sometimes when I write a really good scene or finish a book, things heat up around the bedroom. But if I’m on a deadline or have writer’s block, I don’t even want to TALK to anyone. I can be a bit of a grump, lol”—Paige Prince 

“Writing has made lots of positives in my personal life, especially in a town I live in where people do nothing more but drink and gamble their money. I work for a casino, and I’ve dealt with the worst of the worst. When I come home and write, it’s like a solace from all the grinds I have to deal with in real life.” –Ray Sostre

"I would say a little bit of both. I think on the plus side I'm a happier person, being able to express the minds and ideas of my characters without restraint. I love connecting with others who enjoy the same topics. But I also feel restricted about who I can talk to about my writing based on the negative stigmas surrounding the erotica genre. I've definitely gone to social media to find an outlet for discussion versus seeking out those in my immediate vicinity."--Angora Shade 

How has writing erotica affected your relationships with family and friends? 

“It hasn't really had an effect other than that I have to watch what we discuss when young ears are around.” –Nia Farrell 

“The discovery that I was writing erotica caused some significant tension with my spouse, partly because I had kept it a secret, and partly because of what I was writing. We had to have that long conversation about fact, fantasy, and fiction, and how writing erotica about a sex act or partner doesn't mean you *really* want to do that with them any more than writing horror about a serial killer means you *really* want to murder people and eat their eyes.” –Sally Bend 

“The reason our once private series of stories are now published was my wife’s desire to help some friends with their sex lives. A lunch with women she hadn’t seen in decades led to a discussion where she discovered that many were no longer sexually active. Quickly learning that communication was the main issue, she encouraged me to emphasize that as we went forward with publishing the series. For some of those friends and many others we’ve met through our books, we’re grateful for every comment thanking us for helping them. 

Family, however, is another story altogether. We’re proud of our books and did several very public interviews including a piece in Wisconsin’s largest newspaper. One of our adult children decided we were just too embarrassing for her family to deal with and have banned us from any contact with them. Other, more conservative relatives have also distanced themselves from us and invitations to family events have slowed as well. We realized that living to please others is far less important than our own happiness and if people have a problem with what we do then THEY have the problem. We would be complete hypocrites if we didn’t use the lessons in our books for ourselves. Life really is too short.” –JF Silver 

“It's made me have to lie to several people on where my income comes from. I've settled on "ghost writing" and say it's an NDA that I can't tell what I am writing.”—Reed James 

“My mom is a bit old school, so she blushes heavily and tends to not really mention the kind of books I write. My brothers and sister all think it’s insanely cool and tell everyone they meet. –Paige Prince 

“In one aspect, yes. Yet, I’ve been open to my woman on what I write, and who I write for. I write erotic romance, and the audience I work with is dominated by women. My fans are primarily women who love to read it, and I interact with them. But as far as family or friends, I have no effect from them.”—Ray Sostre 

"I'm very careful whom I speak to about my erotica and romance writing. I sometimes will admit to acquaintances that I write stories, but I don't go into any detail. I live in a close community with traditional values, and I would hate for a negative mark to be placed on my family based on the genre I enjoy writing most. My closest friends are supportive, my significant other is as well, but only a handful of my actual family has any clue I've published explicit sexual literature. That's the kind of thing you get cut out of the family for where I'm from--that and tattoos. I often feel very closeted and unable to be completely open with those I love for fear of rejection."--Angora Shade

Do you have your own personal hard limits on what you will or will not write for subject matter? 

“I don't do incest or bestiality. Any character who has suffered childhood sexual abuse is written as an adult survivor (I do not make them live through it). I have lesbian friends but I'll probably never write FF or FFM because that's not my thing. I want cock. The bigger, the better and the more, the merrier in my books.”—Nia Farrell 

“I prefer to write about LGBTQIA characters and themes, along with BDSM or power-exchange fetishes, because that's both what I know and what I'm comfortable with. I'm not really interested in writing a heterosexual vanilla relationship. I am fascinated by themes of dubious consent, of characters being 'forced' to test their limits and 'encouraged' to cross lines of gender or sexuality, but it's a fine line . . . there has to be an element of mutual pleasure there.” –Sally Bend 

“My stories are fantasies with mature characters who have a lot of experience. There are few scenarios we haven’t covered but I would never use an underage character or delve into bestiality of any kind. Incest and certain bodily functions would probably be axed, too. Our latest actually takes them into a supernatural realm and may even include extraterrestrials! So, there’s not a whole lot I won’t write about.” –JF Silver 

“Yes, I do have hard limits. I do some commission writings for fans and I told one flat-out know. This person's idea made me physically nauseated.” –Reed James 

“Yes, I do. I won’t write anything underage, rape or molestation, or anything about causing an animal harm.”—Paige Prince 

“I will write anything, regarding to whatever kink, but I’m not into dubious content. I don’t believe in using derogatory words to any female character, nor any male character, including race, sexuality, and so forth. I want to create an open world of erotic fiction, a place to escape to, not to express hate and ignorance. I want to pull readers into a story where they feel aroused; not turned off by derogatory comments.”—Ray Sostre 

"I won't write about anything that personally turns me off. If I can't feel sexy about a topic, I don't feel that an attempt would translate well into my writing. I also won't write about underage encounters for the sake of underage encounters, or anything demeaning to a culture, race, sexuality, etc."--Angora Shade

What’s the largest sacrifice you’ve had to make as a writer? 

“Personal time. There is none when a schedule is as demanding as mine (I'm on track to have 21 releases this year, getting ready to load #18 now, and two more are done). I rarely get to read for personal pleasure and limit television to maybe two hours a week. I watch Outlander and Vikings and very little else. I love to sew and make jewelry, but all my projects are in boxes, waiting.” –Nia Farrell 

“Time, plain and simple. I used to have an agreement with my family that I get one uninterrupted night off a week to write, without guilt or distraction, but then our youngest came along and suddenly time is just a little more precious. I try to multitask, to write when I can, but I know there are nights where I've ignored people or been short-tempered because THE WORDS MUST COME and the muse won't let go.” –Sally Bend 

“As a writer, I think the largest sacrifice most of us make is our time. It sometimes seems like writing is the easy part. Promoting and the time spent on social media were completely new concepts to me when I started. I didn’t even use Facebook or Twitter until J.F. Silver came to be about five years ago. Now, I have so many friends and would be nowhere as an author without it. But, I spend so much time there!” –JF Silver 

“I'm not sure I had to make any sacrifices. I mean, I guess I sacrificed pursuing other life options for this one, but it's freed me up from having to work for others.” –Reed James 

“Time with my family. My sanity. (I’m kidding... Pretty sure that has never been a thing.) it’s difficult for me to balance my focus evenly. So, when I was working full time I wasn’t writing. Now that I’m writing (sort of) full time, I’m not really working much. That’s also because of my health, but that’s another tale for another day. I tend to forgot to eat or that my family also needs to eat actual food beyond sandwiches or Ramen while I’m working on a manuscript.”—Paige Prince 

“In the early days, it was to stay up and write. Sometimes, not spend time with my woman and watch TV with her. Thank god for DVRs, because I would hate to miss out on my favorite prime time shows. There had been other sacrifices, but not being able to spend time with my woman has been number one.”—Ray Sostre 

"Time is the largest factor. If I'm trying to write, that means my attention isn't on my family. It's a double edged sword really. Do what I love doing, or spend time with those I love the most. The balance is maintained only when everyone around is happy doing whatever it is they love doing. That's when I write."-- Angora Shade

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve done in the name of “research”? 

“I had to research a punishment scene where the heroine hated pickles and the smell of vinegar. In the scene, her Dominant has her suck on a large dill pickle with a vinegar-soaked square of gauze draped over the end of her nose. I learned first-hand that a cotton ball under the nose wasn't enough. I had to cover my nose to get the full effect. Nasty, nasty stuff.” –Nia Farrell 

“Okay, this is going to sound icky and gross, but the difference between castration, an orchidectomy, and a penectomy. What impact do they have on a person's overall health? What does each do to your hormone balance? How do the change your sex life? How has the definition of an eunuch changed over time, and how do it differ by geography?” –Sally Bend 

“Our stories are multiple partner fantasies. A threesome leads to exploration with another couple and things heat up from there. This was just a fantasy until a few years ago when we decided to try it in real life. All in name of research, of course. After 41 years of marriage, we have no trust or jealousy issues. We just love sex. We also hate the term, “swingers” but that’s the most commonly understood definition of people who enjoy others. After a few fun encounters, we set up an evening with a couple we met online. They invited us to spend the evening, we had a nice dinner, drinks, etc. One thing led to another and we enjoyed each other in more intimate ways. Afterwards, while relaxing in front of a cozy fire, we were horrified to discover that the male half of the couple was a hateful, bigoted racist. I mean, really fucking nasty. My wife is the most open minded, liberal person you could ever meet and she really took one for the team that night. It was very weird.” –JF Silver 

“I think researching about ballerina dance techniques and names and those minute for an erotic story about ballerinas doing naughty dances (with futas, of course, to make it hotter). I've researched into mythology, into biology (I've tried to find out the average number of vaginal contractions a woman has in a minute while orgasming), what the medical term for spontaneous lactation (galactorrhea), how the mind works in regards to arousal and decision making, how to swear in different languages, weapons, I recently did crystals.”—Reed James 

“I’ve had to spend hours Googling the right kind of tree to have been in existence hundreds of thousands of years ago, an herb that would harm a vampire that wasn’t garlic or vervain, and sent porn links to my editor so she could see that a certain sexual position is actually possible.”—Paige Prince 

“Actually, it’s human sexuality. I realized that there are a number of people in this world who have a deep, dirty erotic secret they wouldn’t share with their partner(s), and their sexual confessions have been listed in my stories. When I first started writing erotic romance in 2010, I was writing the romance part, but as I evolved in the next four years to the present I learned that there are a lot of people who want to read stories that are very sexually explicit to what caters to their fantasies. Along the way, I learned that while there are many people who physically attracted to people of the opposite sex there are people who are also flexible with their sexuality. I learned that there are women who would love to have a threesome with other women; bisexual fantasies between both sexes; men and who want to have sex with a transgendered person; men that are into being dominated by a woman, and women vice-versa; even cyber and phone sex with a stranger is one of their fantasies. 

While group sex is their major kink, I learned along the way through interacting with them that they want to read stories that make them wish they were the character(s), living out the fantasies like never before. It’s why I write them. While many of us couldn’t express those fantasies freely, I write for those who want to read it, and by listening to what their sexual fantasies are it’s opened my mind to write it. 

The best research ever.”—Ray Sostre 

"I've done some pretty weird things in the name of research in order to better understand certain kinks. I peed naked in the garden during a rainstorm trying to understand the allure many people have for wetting themselves. I also had my partner pee on me trying to understand the attraction of a golden shower. I learned I love being naked outside in the rain, but personally, although I think I understand the sensation of pee a little better, it's not for me."--Angora Shade

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5 comments:

  1. Awesome Blog, Angora. Next time you're thinking of doing this let me know. I'll happily participate.

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  2. This was interesting to read the experiences of other erotica writers. Thanks for this!

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  3. A delight to read the experiences of broad-minded people who enjoy sharing pleasure with the world.

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