Revealing deep dark desires opens an erotica writer's sexuality to judgment.
If a woman's sexual fantasies involve degradation, domination—rape, even—is she anti-feminist, disturbed or worse? When does sex become "dirty," and does writing erotic fiction involving humiliation mean the author is a sex-crazed, pain-loving looney? From Best Sex Writing 2009 (Cleis Press, edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel), Kristina Lloyd's essay "The Pleasure of Unpleasure" explores the delicate relationship between fantasy and reality, the risk of bringing private thoughts public and gives a glimpse into the life of an erotica writer.
All writers get bad reviews. If you write erotica, your sexuality gets reviewed as well. Trust me, you sometimes need a thick skin to deal with this. We are all, as individuals, never more vulnerable than when we reveal our desiring selves to others, and smut writers do this on a grand scale. Sure, it's framed within a fiction and no one can see us blush. But with that distance comes a space which allows strangers to pass judgement.
Here are a few things that have been said about me. I mean, about my books:
Most of the sex scenes are degrading—not arousing.
Great if you like the idea of being humiliated and called sl*t etc., not so great if you don't.
Ilya is a man who truly doesn't respect Beth in the least, doesn't even like her.
You would think that an erotic fiction book would be at least a little bit sensual
I pitied Beth more than I wanted to be in her place.
One of the worst Black Lace books I have ever read.
I found some of the BDSM disgusting.
Nothing against a kinky read but I don't like mental abuse in erotic books.
My grumble isn't really with negative comments; I think it's par for the course when you're a writer. And I'm pleased to report, they're vastly outnumbered by the very many positive, insightful, considered reviews my work has received over the years.
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