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About the Size of It
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Written by Paul   
Wednesday, 17 August 2011 23:56

I want to talk here about penis size, and no, I'm not going to talk about the size of any actual penises, but rather about dealing with the topic in fiction.  Just as with anything else, the size of a character's dong is something you really only have to consider if you write porn, because if you are writing the usual 'go into heaving metaphor' mainstream sex, then it doesn't become a thing you have to really address.  In specifics.

But porn is different, and you will get the urge to somewhere say something like "He whipped out his nine-inch Viking War Spear and made with the pillaging".  I'm not saying you can't do things like that, I'm just saying you probably should not, and I'll tell you why. 

Perhaps nothing in sex is as fetishized as penis size, except maybe for boobs.  But still, when it gets down to the actual fucking, both men and women are focused on that dick and the exact dimensions thereof.  And then you, the author, are left with a choice - do you take part in the fetishizing of dicks, or do you not?

The main problem with getting on that train and coming out with hard dimensions is that inevitably, hypertrophy will set in.  After all, if the first dick that gets whipped out in the course of the story is supposed to be big, then you are stuck with the next one being even bigger.  You see where this is going?  Dongs are a part of the - pardon me for saying it - rising action in a narrative.

Everything in a story must show levels of increasing tension and challenge - the violence gets bigger and bloodier, the dangers get more threatening, the stakes go up and up - none of this is news to any writer, or it shouldn't be.  Things must progress.  The last thing you want the reader to say is "Whew, this is less tense than the last scene."  Not that you don't have 'down' scenes in between the big scenes to allow the reader to cool off and process what has happened - you need those too - but each new challenge and action and decision must be bigger and more intense than the last.

In porn you have to consider this as regards sex also.  You have to decide what a character has done, so you know what their comfort zone is, so you will know when they are outside it.  A story that starts off with a five-way orgy with fisting and a cattle prod doesn't have anywhere to go emotionally after that - you have blown your load too soon.  We've all encountered porn that can't contain itself and goes lunging right for the clitoris, so to speak, and then gets boring halfway through because everything remains at the same emotional pitch.

The same applies to dicks - or it will if you are foolish enough to supply numbers.  A kind of phallic arms race will get going, and every dick will have to be as large as or bigger than the one before it.  By the end everybody will be running around, brandishing footlong appendages without anybody batting an eye.  If you start your heroine out by getting her worked over by Lord Gnarlyboner and his "ten-inch-prick" then the band of robbers who accost her next will have to contain at least one that size or bigger or she is likely to have to say something like "Well.  .  .  it wasn't as big as M'lord's big one," and that's a let-down for everybody.  Admittedly there are other ways to make a sex scene more 'extreme' than by simple dint of sausage size, but this is a trap easy to fall into.

In other words - don't make it about the dick, make it about the character.  It is too common to use men in porn stories as pretty much ambulatory dildos - faceless pieces of erectile tissue that are objectified just as badly as women, if not moreso.  Not every penis has to be attached to a fully-fleshed character, but it does better to describe the man than his organ.  Truth is, if you describe the character, then the reader will fill in the needed equipment themselves and you'll be just fine.  If you want to say it's big, fine, say it's big, but don't make breathless comparisons to donkeys or bulls and don't ever make the mistake of using a number as shorthand for a person.  A man is more than the sum of his inches.  Take that from someone who has written a lot of cocks.

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