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Yes means yes, No means no, and Fantasy means Maybe: the issue of consent in fiction and fantasy
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Written by Amanda Gannon   
Tuesday, 20 September 2011 02:44

Warning for not-very-in-depth discussion of rape fantasies.

Disclaimer: Just in case I have to say this, real-life rape is wrong.  Period.  Rape fantasies and ravishment fantasies are incredibly common, and there is nothing wrong with having them.

I have been asked many times to explain the difference between a ravishment fantasy and a rape fantasy, or a ravishment scene and a rape scene in erotic fiction.  I think it's an issue worth addressing.

Ravishment is a staple of romance and erotica, and this is never more true than in kinky erotica.  Fiction is a safe way to play with desires that would get someone hurt – or justifiably arrested – if they actually tried to go there.  Fiction is a first-class ticket around taboos, around moral objections, around the ugly reality of the world we live in.  Fiction allows us to fantasize safely, and it's important to be able to do that.

But why do we find some fictional ravishment sexy and fun while other fictional ravishment strikes us as upsetting and icky?  And why is one person's sexy, fun ravishment another person's hard limit?

Fluid Dynamics
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Written by Paul   
Thursday, 15 September 2011 01:12

When writing sex, one has to actually be concerned with technical details that never come up in mainstream fiction.  I have said this sort of thing before, but today I want to discuss the specifics of bodily fluids and where they go, when you mention them, and what you do with them once they are out there.

Sex is messy, and a lot of eyes-averting and overlooking of this detail goes into most mainstream writing, not to mention film.  I mean, most movies won't even show any thrusting, let alone anything dripping, spurting, or gushing.  Writing is often as bad, with metaphors crashing into one another so turgidly and figuratively that someone unfamiliar with sex would be hard-pressed to figure out exactly what is going on. 

This has led, I think, to the general sanitizing of sex in the popular imagination.  I remember when I first had sex that I was struck by how gooey it all was - something that all the Penthouse Forum letters on earth had not really prepared me for.  Most of the sex we read and see has been rendered pretty clean, leaving the very mention of fluids to the provenance of pornography - and even the sex in written porn can seem far too tidied-up.

People are mostly water, and we drip, drool, secrete, and leak with alarming regularity.  Thing is, when you are writing porn you are suddenly free - nay required - to include these details, and as usual other literary models are useless.  Shakespeare himself never included any references to "The spvrtynge of yon bodkin o'er the fraughten bosoms", so you are kind of on your own.

Does it get you hot?
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Written by Amanda Gannon   
Monday, 12 September 2011 23:00
One of the questions I get asked occasionally is "Does writing erotica/porn arouse you?"

We're a two-horse team here, and I can only speak for myself, but for me the answer is a resounding "Sometimes."

Exciting, huh?

It isn't a stupid question, it's just a very obvious one.  And sort of personal.  Also, quite compelling.  Even I have been known to ask it.  But I'm never sure what people expect or want to hear when they ask me this.

I think some folks want to imbue the career of erotica/porn writer with a kind of glamour that it simply does not have.  Others may just like to think about happy pornographers putting in a hard day's work, and then masturbating furiously or running straight for the nearest sex partner.  I really don't know.  Some writers may very well do this, which would certainly be cool for them, but I personally don't.

Writing a sex scene is just as much work as writing any other kind of scene. If things are going well, it's a high that transcends horniness; I may very well be aroused but am so busy managing voice and psychic distance and viewpoint and blocking and detail that I don't have time to really think about the arousal or experience it in any conscious way, and if things are going poorly, I'm usually too busy banging my head into a brick wall to even think about getting off.

There are exceptions to this, of course, and I treasure those exceptions, but for the most part, the writing itself doesn't get me excited.  I have to put the scene aside for a while and come back to it once it's cooled off, and that is when I read it over and decide it flips my switch and I give it the final stamp of approval, or decide that it needs more work and I start cutting it apart and sticking it back together.  Again.

Either way, porn that I write almost never has the same effect on me as porn that other people write.

There have been exceptions.

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