Monday, 16 July 2018

Writing Erotica

There's a stigma when it comes to writing erotic books making it a whole lot more complicated than other genres. They can often be judged as offensive or degrading even if the erotic element is fairly tame.

There are also authors who see them as a cheap way to make a quick buck. It's no surprise that erotic short stories are popular on the Amazon Kindle and while many are written with passion by an author with talent there are also substandard books that were clearly written for the sake of getting another sale. I don't judge writers for that for in my experience an erotic short story will far outsell a much larger novel, and I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of the authors of erotic books started out writing mainstream stories.

I've read an erotic book that was a trilogy of tales about a woman with a magic futa wand that would temporarily give whoever she used it in an incredibly large penis. This would then lead onto a sex act. The premise of the plot was very simple, and essentially comedy, yet it was clear the author had a passion for her work and didn't skimp on details as to how she felt seeing the giant penis inflate in front of her.

I've read another book about a woman with large lactating breasts who decides to feed her two boyfriends. That is the entire plot in a single sentence yet the book was 30 pages long describing even the minutest of details.

Some erotic shorts however tend to be too clinical in details, or incredibly brief, essentially listing a number of sex acts rather than actually describing them. I've also read a detailed story about a woman hiking, meeting men upon her journey, then indulging in casual sex. Strangely this too would mention no more than a paragraph or so about each sexual encounter before the main character would be on her way again.

Personally when it comes to my own writing I've noticed there's a tenancy to feel awkward or embarrassed about writing erotica that doesn't apply to other genres such as horror for instance which may be incredibly violent and disturbing. In some ways writing about a werewolf ripping out someone's guts in a gory frenzy is considered fairly normal whereas a story about two lovers giving each other anal sex could be seen as perverse. Maybe I'm a prude or just easily embarrassed. I suppose it's down to the reader making assumptions about the author's inner thoughts. If someone knew I thought about werewolves killing people they'd know it's just a fantasy whereas if a reader knew of my sexual thought's they'd wonder if I actually partook in such activities.

Most of my stories tend to be set around mythology, warriors and fairies but it's erotica that sells. It's a sad fact but when it comes to publishing ebooks a 10 page erotic short will far outsell a 300 page novel, yet on the other hand it's far less likely to receive a review. My guess is people don't like to admit they read erotic books so avoid reviewing their purchase.

"The difference between pornography and erotica is lighting."
 - Gloria Leonard.

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

Egyptology: Search For The Tomb of Osiris (Book Review)

I was given a book recently all about ancient Egypt and the Tomb of Osiris. It's one of those expensive large books that contains lots of folded maps, pullouts and various things inside that make the experience a whole lot more interesting to read, getting the reader involved with the exploration. I've read similar books and it makes it so much easier to learn when the author explains how facts were derived rather than just stating them.

This book was different though in that it was a reproduced journal of a failed attempt to search for the Tomb of Osiris ending abruptly with the author's supposed death. The final page even has stains on it that may have been coffee or possibly blood. The book was written by Emily Sands, a brilliant name for an archaeologist by the way, and mentions personal notes as well as records of facts about ancient Egypt.

I was a little suspicious about it due to the illustrations being so beautifully drawn while the text itself was so brief. I'm sure that if it was supposed to be the main journal shared by the team of archaeologists it would be full of detailed notes. There was a photo too but the author wasn't pictured but she may have been the one taking the photograph. The publisher also mentions at the beginning and at the end that, while the journal claims to be true, it could be an elaborate hoax as some of the facts mentioned wouldn't have been known to the author at the time. She talks of Tutankhamen's canopic jars for instance before they were revealed to the world.

Rather than the book simply being facts about ancient Egypt it became more of a story about an amateur archaeologist and her friends as they search for a missing tomb. I couldn't put the book down and read it from cover to cover in one sitting totally hooked on what happens next caring more about the author than what was actually discovered. I do hope that it's all a big hoax however because I the thought of people dying whilst searching for a lost tomb is upsetting. There were detailed sketches of the tomb's entrance though so if the tomb is ever found then it would prove it all true.

A brilliant read from cover to cover.