Erotic fucktion: why is it all so shit?

Erotic romance fiction

Be prepared for everything you’re about to read to sound filthy. 

It’s hard not to do that with this subject – see what I mean?

Also, I will go out of my way to sound filthy, I think this post cries out (in ecstasy) for it but please, viewer discretion is advised. 

The number of saucy novels – done well, is limited

I personally have yet to find any that made me think, “yeah, that was really well-written”.

(But I do like to persevere, for research, obvs.)

In a past incarnation, I used to be a cleaner.

(No, this isn’t the start of some rags-to-riches Jackie Collins romp. Sorry.)

I was dusting around a bookcase one day (oo-er) when I happened upon a copy of Jilly Cooper’s Riders (again, oo-er). Pretty apt because the client in question was a racehorse breeder.

Cooper really knows her audience: lady toffs

You know the sort, they hunt, kill or maim things. They also refuse to use any word that might be French in origin.

Always ‘loo’ never ‘toilet’ – don’t say ‘pardon?’ but do say ‘what?’.

I couldn’t resist a little rummage through the folds – right there and then and to my delight, I found this succulent passage:

“Phenomenally strong he could go for long periods without sleep but he realised, apart from the 2-hour marathon in a four-poster with Gabriella, Friday night, he hadn’t been to bed for three days.”

I say, that was a bit of a tie-loosener!

Let’s be honest, most of us haven’t seen a four-poster bed let alone had a shagathon in one.

I get it, these books are written to titivate, entertain, and make the author loads of cash.

(Riders saved Jilly Cooper from losing her home – posh banging really does pay the bills.)

Look…

I’m not saying we massage the erotic bar in the hopes we can raise it to make this genre worthy of a Man Booker prize.

Nope, high art this stuff will never be.

Can you imagine though, the face of say Hilary Mantel, losing said award to an author whose book has 127 creative terms for vulva? I’d like to be there if that ever happens, hell, I’d like to be the writer of that book!

For me, these publications fail in their purpose

If however, the purpose were to make me howl with laughter, their job would be complete.

But it’s almost like we’re not allowed to be turned on and have intelligent writing.

It’s similar to a lot of porn.

Especially 70s porn. Moustached plumbers looking to sort out the missus’ waterworks – and all before the old man gets home.

No one bothered to write a decent script. And I guess for many, the function of intercourse is really all that’s required and I do appreciate the audience for that kind of porn isn’t me.

Laying my scantily clad arse on the table, I probably find a clever rom-com sexier.

The wordplay is often much more stimulating than the fucking.

And lord, the fucking in these novels!

You’ll find euphemism on top of euphemism. Her furry mound and his, well, you get the picture. And every which way to describe how he manages to put his thing into her thing.

Christ!

And I do understand that Barbara Cartland would probably have died much sooner if she had to dictate the word, ‘cock’ to her typist.

Ok, so not all romantic fiction is busting at the seams with smut, it’s right to make the distinction between authors like Georgette Heyer and say bang-fest authors like EL James.

The world of romance writing is as varied as any other.

Jane Austen is considered to be someone that critiqued the position of women (oo-er) within her own social class – all with the economic and cultural implications that called attention to.

But she was also a great writer of romance – sophisticated language that, let’s be honest, begged for Mr Darcy to get his britches off.

Or maybe that was just Colin Firth that did that?

I don’t get why most of this stuff has to be shit though

Why do they have to be overly descriptive?

The verbosity of it really puts me off. It says to me, this author hasn’t got a goddamn clue.

And you know what, #SmartPeopleHaveUrgesToo!

There’s no need to heavily explain the mechanics of doing the nasty – these aren’t government sex-ed pamphlets.

They tell you EVERYTHING

Our minds will happily firm up the details, we’re very capable of reading between the lines.

In my view, part of good writing is about what the author doesn’t say. You’ve mastered the art if you can paint the scene with as little information as possible.

The Fifty Shades trilogy is a prime example of wordiness on crack.

(Yes, I read all 3, more research you understand.)

I got so bored of the sex.

So much sex! I mean, seriously, I was glad of a rest bite between the bonking but only briefly because the dialogue was baaaaaad.

The books reminded me of the kind of stuff you got in the 80s.

All that aspirational living bullshit. A lowly mousy girl becomes sophisticated and fucked endlessly by a billionaire misogynist.

Who doesn’t want that?

And I’m sure you’d love to have your arse beaten into oblivion by someone who has deep feelings for you. Furthermore, you’d forgive that person because he’s had a terrible time with his mother who incidentally, looks just like you.

I know, steamy stuff.

These books are aimed at heterosexual women and they do, on the whole, seem to greedily lap them up.

Most in that market don’t care how it’s written, as long as it has romance and sex (and psychological abuse) these ladies seem to be happy.

But as a heterosexual woman, I’d like to see more of an effort made, if you don’t mind, or I’ll have to revisit (for the 75th time) Xaviera Goes Wild…

Published by Sarah Wilson-Blackwell

B2B SEO content writer, copywriter and business blogger. Reviewer of useless blogs and tired-ass websites.

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