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I Urgently Want, Desperately Need, Hungrily Desire That My Effort To Learn How To Write Erotica Ends Happily

As authors, we all eventually come to that dreaded moment when we realize:

Crap, I have to write a love scene.

There are many reasons we might come to this horrible conclusion:

  • The characters’ star-crossed story arcs have become entangled and we must do the deed to keep them on course
  • We’ve written twenty pages about how to pick a lock, and aside from the reader now needing a little something to spice up the narrative, the whole key-in-the-lock metaphor is begging for some fumbling, first time exploration
  • Our chosen genre is erotica

Fortunately for the general public, erotica is not my chosen genre. If I ever attempt to write such a yarn, I’m sure blue-helmeted UN soldiers will come for me on black helicopters and arrest me for violating the Geneva Convention on Torture.

That said, I can see some love scenes in my literary future.

No amount of drinking or shock therapy has been able to disabuse me of this notion.

To be fair, I have no place to go but up with regards to this writing front. Take, for example, one of my very early attempts to get the reader’s motor running:

No, I'm not happy to see you. I'm just raising my hand because I know the answer to the math problem on the board.

Bonus points for penmanship, right?

His finger became erect as she sauntered to him and stopped at his table to say, “What the hell is going on with your hand?”

Yes, terrible, but I wrote it in 3rd grade, before I had a proper understanding of the mechanics of love-making. I’d heard something about the distance between a man’s thumb and forefinger being an important indicator about size or some-such, and drew my own conclusions.

As did my 3rd grade teacher. That was a very long year of parent-teacher conferences and sessions with the school psychiatrist. The loss of control and power I experienced that year left me feeling completely impotent.

I do feel compelled to point out that while the writing may have fallen terribly short, my youthful scrawl on brown butcher paper imbued the passage with a level of charm that, had it been printed in a book, would be sorely lacking.

It is this inherent charm that led me to originally published my first book, Marlowe and the Spacewoman, on bound butcher paper.

The first twenty pages were written in a childlike scrawl, but after that my hand cramped and I lost the will to continue. I figured twenty pages of charm ought to be enough to hook the reader, and the rest was printed.

I learned, after the fallout from 3rd grade, to hide my future attempts at erotic writing, something which added a sense of naughtiness to the words and magnified the wrongness of them tenfold. This continued well into my thirties, much to the reading world’s benefit.

I also went to great lengths to develop a rock hard understanding of sex, how it works, who does it, where the erogenous zones are, things like that.

The missus is shaking her head now. She doesn’t think I can hear, but she’s muttering, “All that research, and nothing to show for it.”

Presumably she’s talking about my written love scenes. I concede the point.

But the downside to this research is that my subsequent efforts at conveying intimate encounters read more like a Catholic nun-authored, 5th grade Personal Growth textbook describing how sex worked.

A 5th grade Personal Growth textbook translated into English from the original Esperanto. By someone who doesn’t speak Esperanto.

Or English.

His member became erect as his increased heart rate due to arousal raised his blood pressure, flushing his face bright red and engorging his sexual unit to the point of rigidity required for successful penetration of the female body in that special place (not her bum!). At the same time, his capability for critical thinking diminished due to a reduction of blood reaching his brain.

Had his critical thinking skills not been diminished, he might have paused to consider his soon-to-be lover’s large hands and prominent Adam’s apple.

Shh,” he whispered brusquely, pressing a finger against her lips. “No need to tell me. I’ve taken 5th grade Personal Growth. I know where this,” and he gestured down to his ‘eleventh finger’, “goes.”

Dry and mechanical, yes, but a huge improvement over my 3rd grade effort, no?

And to think, I was only 33 when I wrote that.

I figure by the time I reach 50, I’ll have overcome the one remaining issue I have with writing erotica: my extreme discomfort with using certain terms referring to a person’s sexy-fun bits.

You do not want to know what I call breasts, or that elusive, possibly mythical button-thingy women allegedly have that makes sex feel nice for them.

Ultimately, my problem right now is not how to write the love scenes I know are coming, but to write my characters’ story arcs in such a way as to put off that moment as long as humanly possible.

My characters lead very frustrating lives.

But not to worry. I have no doubt that eventually, my beloved paper friends will get their happy ending.

And now, a word from our sponsor: me!
 
My (completely free of intimate encounters) books are available!

Marlowe and the Spacewoman:

Marlowe and the Spacewoman

Kleencut (FREE!):

So bad it won a Voidy for the next THREE consecutive years (would have been FOUR, but 2012 was a leap year)

 
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Posted by on 10 October 2012 in Angst, Life

 

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I Don’t Want To Embrace My Inner Child – He’s A Total Prat (And Not In The Good, Sociopath Way)

What's that, you say? Tea pots and inner child? Oh. Never mind.

I'm outraged! And I feel old! And I'm outraged I feel old!

Lately I’ve been feeling old.

It might be the grey hair. Or the onset of constant low-level joint pain. Or the fact that a pack of teenage girls recently rolled their eyes and laughed at me, saying, “Not a chance, grampa!”

For the record, I was not hitting on them. One was wearing an improbably short, impressively garish orange and purple plaid mini skirt, more lacy trim than skirt, to be strictly honest, and along with the mohawk and Wellingtons, how could I not stare?

But feeling old reminded me of that old saying about getting in touch with your inner child.

Lately I’ve also been feeling really angry.

It might be the yahoos on the freeway, cutting me off. Or the power walkers on residential sidewalks who won’t get out of my way (share the road, bitches!). Or that old lady ahead of me in the line at the bank, depositing a thousand dollars into her account, one penny at a time.

It makes me feel like a tea-pot that’s about to explode.

Seeing as how these two facts combine to make me an old, poorly engineered tea-pot that’s bubbling with rage, I started thinking about forms of release.

Instead of getting in touch with my inner child, I pondered getting in touch with my inner sociopath.

(It’s possible that The Dark Knight was on TV when I came up with this combination. It’s an awesome movie, and has probably inspired countless other brilliant ideas.)

What’s not to like about this idea? Let’s review:

Sociopaths know no fear.

Sociopaths don’t care about anyone or anything.

Sounds perfect! I don’t want to fear the consequences of my actions, and I certainly don’t want undue concern for my fellow humans to prevent me from running some a-holes off the road (or shoving them into a bank vault that’s on a timed lock right before it closes on a Friday afternoon). Let’s do it!

Come on? Who among you hasn’t wistfully thought about going on a rampage down the streets of a major city, controlling a crime syndicate while battling masked vigilantes?

Oh, but wait. I suppose getting in touch with your inner sociopath is like losing your virginity. Afterwards, everything changes, and you can’t go back, so you want to make sure you wait for the right moment, the right person, before you surrender to that dark, ever-hungry urge.

Because there’s no returning from this journey. Like sex, once you’ve tried sociopathy, you can’t stop. You just want more, more, more, and then you stumble across a saucy little number in a garish mini skirt and she calls you “grampa.”

But I digress.

So I’m not really sure what to do. I’ve tried researching embracing your inner sociopath, but not surprisingly, there are far fewer pithy articles in the mainstream media about doing it than there are about embracing your inner rug rat.

So for now, I bide my time, taking comfort in knowing that I’m not alone in the struggle with this question, that we all are wondering when we should cut loose and let our wild and crazy out.

Oh, it’s just me, you say?

Never mind.

And now, a word from our sponsor: me!
 
My book, Marlowe and the Spacewoman, is now available!
 

Marlowe and the SpacewomanClick here to learn more!

 
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Posted by on 24 April 2012 in Life

 

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Let them eat cake – sexy, sexy beet-covered cake

I know who Anonymous should target next: SMS spammers. They’re worse than email spammers because when they spam me, I have to pay $0.20 per message. I am, in effect, paying to get spammed.

And at $0.20 a pop, I say, “Death to them all.”

I bring this up because I was meeting with my critique group last night when I saw I had a text message on my phone. Since the only person who usually texts me is my wife, I thought it might be important, like:

Boys found liquor stash, drank entire bottle of Jack. Shud I call 911?

Boys climbing razor blade sculpture again. Where is all the gauze?

U can stay out late. Fernando the sexy pool boy is helping.

Watch the kids! Fernando helping w/ *kids*

Srsly, stay out late. Fernando’s got it covered.

Fernando kicked over candles. House on fire. Come home ASAP.

Boy, were those exciting moments!

This particular message, however, was not from the missus, and only important if I needed to get a $1500 payday-type loan.

Fortunately, my critique group had managed to put me in an incredibly good mood prior to receiving this COD-spam, so I did not immediately go home to mail my kids’ poopy diapers to the company responsible.

Never cross me – I’ve got over a dozen dirty diapers, including a couple from the kids’ stomach virus period, on ice, just waiting for a deserving recipient. Ask Fernando.

SMS-spammers, you have been warned.

Anyway, this brings me to the subject of today’s post: the advantages of a critique group.

Actually, there’s only one advantage:

Cake.

Yes, if you are part of a professional critique group, when you finally publish your book, they will surprise you with cake. It’s an unwritten rule of critique groups that they MUST do this, and had I remembered that rule, I would not have been surprised.

Sure, I can hear the objection. “Cake? That’s the only advantage of a critique group?”

Yes.

“But what about pointing out plot holes, and shining the harsh light of literary justice on typos, and using guided imagery to help you work through issues of character development?”

First off, what kind of fascist and yet tree-hugging, hippie-loving critique group are you a part of? Do you launch your meetings with tantric chants and aura adjustments before breaking out the literary truncheons?

Second off, you can pay people to do all that for you. And as an added benefit, instead of being a Socialist Commie freeloader expecting all that stuff gratis, you’re a job creator.

And if the Republican debates have taught me anything of substance, it’s that we need more job creators and fewer Socialist Commie free-loading writers in this country.

So stop being a drag on the economy and start paying money to seedy editors you find on Craigslist or through vanity presses! It’s your patriotic duty.

The history of this cake tradition is actually quite interesting. It started with Marie Antoinette’s critique group. It turns out when it came to writing, she was a complete hack. When her critique group pointed this out, she railed against them, tossed them out of the palace, and famously said, “Let them eat cake.”

Slightly well less know, but speaking volumes about her ability to take criticism, she also said upon their forced departure, “Don’t sully the palace doors by allowing them to hit their asses on the way out.”

She was kind of a bitch.

With 20/20 hindsight, her decision to allow peasants into her critique group looks a little bit like a colossal blunder. After all, peasants are naturally prone to using torches and guillotines to emphasis their points about problems in a manuscript.

The fact that her book was called Lady Guillotine, Why So Timid with the Bitches? probably didn’t help her either.

(The title sounds way classier in French, as most titles do. Except, ironically, for The French Lieutenant’s Woman.)

The cake my group was verbally contractually obligated to get me was damned awesome:

Awesome, sexy launch cake for Marlowe and the Spacewoman. You should really use a browser that shows pictures so you can bear witness to its profound, earth-shaking awesomeness. Plus, beets!

I read a letter in Penthouse Magazine that started like this cake: "I was walking past a government-run beet farm when this lithe, sexy woman in a spacesuit started crawling through the field towards me." I sleep with that column folded under my pillow. The missus keeps trying to destroy it, but I have many, many copies.

Although frankly, I find it shockingly derivative of Andrew Wyeth’s Christina’s World:

Christina's World by Andrew Wyeth, purveyor of farm porn (betchya wish you could see more than this alt text now, eh?)

Christina's World, considered a classic by some. I guess any painting with a woman crawling through dead grass is considered a classic, though it isn't immediately clear to me why.

But at least now we can answer that question that has haunted art scholars for decades: It is a beet Christina has crammed in her mouth in this painting. As with the failed government policies at the time, it is not visible because it is obscured by our limited perspective.

And they refused to issue me that honorary art degree! Pah! Who’s laughing now, Chicago Art Institute?

Although I am certain there was another contributing factor to Wyeth not revealing that beet:

He was attempting to avoid overt eroticism is his work. Because hey, you have to admit, this looks damned erotic:

If Andrew Wyeth was alive and painting today, all his works would feature spacewomen with beets in their mouths. True fact. On his death bed, his last words were, "I wish I had included more sexy sci-fi ladies in my paintings. Would have made them more interesting." Then he expired, looking disgusted with himself for his thematic failings. Sad, really.

Whoa Momma! That is HAWT. Or is it just me? Please say it isn't just me.

Damn, that’s two things critique groups are good for: cake and boosting the sale of beets.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to the store to create desperately needed farming jobs by buying some bright red comestibles.

Or is that cumestibles?

 
And now, a word from our sponsor: me!
 
My book, Marlowe and the Spacewoman, is out!
 

Marlowe and the SpacewomanClick here to learn more or order a copy!

 
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Posted by on 25 January 2012 in Marlowe and the Spacewoman, Other Blogs

 

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Fanfic is DESTROYING America! (Sam/Dean/JWatson/SHolmes/HPotter/HDresden)

Sam wiped the lamb’s blood mixed with demon’s blood from the silver knife and looked at Dean, whose breath heaved with the recent exertion of killing the monster. But when Dean looked in Sam’s eyes, he realized he was ready, nay, needed a little more…exertion.

Harry Dresden ran his withered, burnt hand across his bare, sweat-glistening chest, and glared at them from the other side of the prone demon body. “Please, you two, get a room.” A thoughtful expression came over his smoldering, lonely eyes. “Unless you’re willing to share…with me.”

The boy wizard leapt up in the air, his wand already at half-staff. “Me too!  Me too!” shouted Harry Potter. He waved his wand and shouted, “Snuggigus Fantasticus Sexicus!” and a plush king-sized bed appeared in the room of the abandoned old cabin. The four heroes fell into it at once, their clothes seemingly falling away as they tumbled into one another.

“Oh, I love you my sweet!”

“No, I love you more my shmoopy boopy toopy!”

“Wait, who are you talking to?”

“Not possible, Harry dearest! I love you the mostest. Just look at me when I look at you! No, look lower!”

“So you weren’t talking to me, you cold, heartless bastard. That makes me want you more! MOAR!”

“I see the game is afoot,” the young, modern-day Sherlock intoned as he burst into the cabin, followed a moment later by the erstwhile John Watson.

“My god, Holmes,” ejaculated Watson, “there are four naked men in that bed!”

“Your powers of observation fail you yet again, my dear John,” said Holmes, languishing atop the other men. “There are five naked men in this bed, and I predict that before this sentence is over there will be si- Ah, I see I deduced correctly.”

“Oh shut up and kiss me,” said John, his hungry mouth finding Sherlock’s and kissing it hungrily. “I’m ravenous for your love, old man.”

“I don’t think Mycroft would approve,” mumbled Sherlock between gasps of sheer pleasure. “He hates when I start without him.”

“Rick! Rick! Where are you!”

“Minmei!” shouted all six men at once. “What are you doing standing there when you can be here in bed, naked, with the rest of us?”

“Oh my,” said Mr. Sulu, beaming into the cabin, sword swinging, just in time to join the festivities.

Fanfic is destroying America. And I’m not talking about the paper-thin plots, the laughable sex scenes masquerading as character development, or the wanton intellectual property theft that fanfic represents.

I’m talking about England reclaiming us.

“Wha?” ask the naive Americans out there reading this. (“Who cares?” ask the nonchalant Canadians out there reading this.)

Fanfic is undergoing a British invasion. Doctor Who, Torchwood (which is practically fanfic in its raw form anyway), Sherlock (modern AND gaslight), Harry Potter(/Snape – eew!). The fanfic sites are being overwhelmed by the British newcomers. These ‘illegal immigrants’, as it were, are robbing American fanfic stories of valuable slots on the fanfic sites.

Even our old enemy, Japanese anime, is contemplating an alliance of convenience (no-strings-attached-allies-with-benefits?) to thrust off the new threat.

How do I know this? How did I detect this saucy, saucy threat?

I looked at the numbers (all from a prominent fanfic website on the net (ahem) I refuse to name because it employs so many non-American fanfics).

Greatest American Hero: 119 (Yes, the pinnacle of American greatness, the Greatest America Hero, has only 119 stories.)

Harry Effin’ Potter: 542,277 (And I’m not kidding about the effin’ part. Holy crap, remind me to never send my kids to a British boarding brothel school!)

Knight Rider: 52 (52!!!! Come on! It’s KNIGHT RIDER AND MADE OF AWESOME! KITT/Michael fanfic practically WRITES ITSELF!!!!)

Sherlock: 4509

Buck Rogers: 3 (3!!!!!!!! You can’t get MORE AMERICAN than Buck Rogers (and we all want MOAR MOAR MOAR Buck!))

Clearly the Americans are under threat from our supposed allies across the pond. The slimy limeys are taking over, and we, in our highly aroused and distracted state, are allowing them.

It’s a damn shame.

If you’re American (or if you’re Canadian but think Americans are awesome, as we are), it is your patriotic duty to stop whatever it is you’re doing right now and write a fanfic based on an American book/movie/TV series. Unless you were already in the process of doing just that, in which case, in the name of all that is holy, DON’T STOP!

Need some ideas?

Puff the Magic Dragon is woefully under-represented in the genre. Where else can you find a more American folklore opportunity?

Tom Sawyer/Huck Finn/Jumping Frog of Calaveras County. Freaky deaky!

Any characters created by Tom Wolfe or Tom Clancy. (And how about created by Wolfe AND Clancy? Tasty tasty.)

CNN is still American. Why limit ourselves to fiction? In this war on Britain, let’s draft ourselves some (American) fannonfic. Mmm, Anderson Cooper/Bernard Shaw. Yummy.

So yes, help us stop the British fanfic menace. And once we put the Brits down, we can start worrying about those cheap Chinese import fanfics. We can’t compete with their lower cost knock-offs, but we can erect a proud, tall barrier by using more and bigger penises in our fanfic.

And if you’re worried that plot will take up too much space, crowding out the giant genitalia, don’t. Plot in fanfic is like use of a condom in fanfic – totally unnecessary and rarely seen.

And once we have a perfect world of American fanfic devoid of plot or meaningful character development, free for our impressionable youth and adults to read, people will come to expect less of loftier works, such as books you buy online and at the bookstore or peruse at the library. Those can be devoid of depth and meaning too.

That’s when we’ll know we’ve won.

And now, a word from our sponsor: me!

Marlowe and the SpacewomanClick here to check out my forthcoming book, Marlowe and the Spacewoman, coming out January 9th, 2012 (Balloon Ascension Day)!

 
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Posted by on 24 August 2011 in Fanfic, Other Blogs, Story

 

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