Friday, November 9, 2012

Vagina Week: Part Three-- Erotica


Erotica can come in many forms, but the one we are referring to is the wonderful land of erotic novels. Wonderful, sordid books that need no pictures to get you hot under the covers.

Approximately 100 million men in the U.S. and Canada accessed porn online in 2008. Although women aren’t normally willing to pay for such typically male-oriented visual porn, they’re quite happy to pay for the privilege of reading romance fiction. So happy, in fact, that such erotica actually produces more revenue than does online pornography for men.

Now these books may not have the same appeal for a man (or at least they pretend that it doesn’t) and they do tend to be geared toward female audiences. However, you should never make fun of your lover for reading erotic novels. You probably should be giving that book a giant hug. For a start that book is practically your wing man, and will totally get you laid. Also it encourages women to explore all avenues of sex in a safe environment (which encourages them to try things out in the bedroom.)

As I mention in almost every post. Communication is key if you are in a relationship with someone, you should share your favorite passage with them. Erotica is not something that needs to be a secret, it’s been around for a very long time and should be a tool used to enhance your own understanding of your sexuality and that of your partner.

Curiously enough, although sex is ever-present in romance, it doesn’t really appear to be crucial to the woman’s enjoyment.

So what is the difference between a romance novel and an erotic novel? Sometimes it is hard to tell, but usually it’s the detail and amount of sex. A romantic novel alludes to sex, but it tends to be the build up before the actual act. An erotic novel has a story line, but the story line is there to loosely support the multitude of sex scenes.

But even then, sex scenes depicted in romance novels are comparatively tame as compared to erotic stories written with males in mind. And there’s far more emphasis on the emotions and relationship of the two principals than in male-fashioned fiction. Which might well explain why generally people are inclined to talk about ”erotica” for women and “pornography” for men.

Now, that’s not to suggest that women don’t enjoy a little porn, too. Many of them do, but let’s no kid ourselves. Porn is made almost exclusively for men. It’s a multi-billion dollar industry that depends on male customers to survive. There is very little porn made for women; films with a story, with delayed gratification, a slow build of sexual tension. I think you’d be hard pushed to find porn that chooses to combine romantic love and sexual desire. And that, on the whole, is what women are after.

Don’t get me wrong, we know there is excitement to that sudden rush of hormones that leaves you incapable of controlling yourself; ripping off a lover’s clothes with shaky hands, in a desperate need to feel skin against skin. We women know the value of a quickie. It's exciting and it has its place. However, we are aware that there is a veritable cornucopia of sex, a vast array of ways to get your rocks off. Variety really is the spice of life.

So, why do women prefer erotic literature, well, quite simply, because it offers that variety. Porn is usually formulaic and, more importantly, leaves nothing, zero, zip to the imagination. Erotica, however, can be set anywhere, in any time, it can shift; the characters can quite literally shift. Sometimes encounters are quick and dirty, sometimes there are pages and pages of frustrated longing followed by slow sensual love making - usually, there is a mix of those two extremes and everything in between.

For the most part they tend to be cheesy. That is not necessarily a bad thing. They are a fantasy, not reality, and I think people can be tough on them. I know I sometimes catch myself asking whether or not the author knows about thesauruses or saying that would never happen. Forget all that. It’s not important. Throw yourself into the book and embrace the fantasy.

The point is, she is not bound simply by the garish images in front of her eyes. A woman’s imagination is forced to do some of the work for her and it will, undoubtedly, prove more arousing than anything that is pushed right in her face. 

Erotic novels are also good for something else... Roleplay! It sets up every scenario, ranging from fan fiction to sexy fireman and everything in between. If you're stumped on what to do and can’t think of a scenario on your own pick up a dirty book. It will spell it all out for you. It will even give you wonderfully hokey things to say like. “Oh mister fireman, your hose is so big!” Corny, yes, but that’s the point. It’s harmless, delightfully full of giggles, and fun.

Almost all forms of fetish, from light spankings to the more advanced stuff, are written about in detail in erotic books. So, if there is anything that you are remotely curious about, there is an erotic book out there for you that will help you decided whether or not it would be worth trying or not. Now keep in mind not everything described in those novels are physically possible, and some moves are better left to the professionals, but it is a good place to start (and you shouldn’t be scared off by that. Just know your limits.) 

Just like rule 34, there is erotica for everyone too.

That brings me to the insatiable Fifty Shades of Grey, the BDSM sensation that's sweeping the nation.

Yes. Most of the horrible things being said about this book series are completely true.

If you've been living under a rock and haven't heard about Fifty Shades of Grey, it's an erotic tale of two lovers that originated online as Twilight-based fan fiction before being repurposed as a series of full-length books first on e-readers and now, after a seven-figure deal with mainstream publisher  Arrow, as actual paper-and-ink tomes – continues to build. Doubtless panting with excitement, it has thrust, thrust and thrust itself again into the bestseller lists.

The writing is atrocious. 

The plot lines are predictable and fairly cheesey
The characters names are Anastasia Steele & Christian Grey (Need I say more?)
It makes BDSM culture look like you need to be "fifty shades of fucked up" to like a little bondage.

But if you can get past those flaws (and believe me it's tough to do) E.L James' breakout novel can really teach you some things. Especially if your sex life is (so called) vanilla-- whether you want to be tied up, or just think about it fondly.

If you're looking for something in the same vein as Fifty Shades of Grey, you can try picking up The Sleeping Beauty Trilogy by Anne Rice, which is the exploration of the traditional folktale of "Sleeping Beauty," the spell cast upon the lovely young princess and everyone in her castle can only be broken by the kiss of a Prince. It is an ancient story, one that originally emerged from and still deeply disturbs the mind's unconscious. In the first book of the trilogy, Anne Rice, writing as A.N. Roquelaure, retells the Beauty story and probes the unspoken implications of this lush, suggestive tale by exploring its undeniable connection to sexual desire. Here the Prince awakens Beauty, not with a kiss, but with sexual initiation. His reward for ending the hundred years of enchantment is Beauty's complete and total enslavement to him.

Anne Rice paints a descriptive (and well written!) account of an entire Kingdom immerse in BDSM culture. 

Maybe you're looking to find a little free stimulation, well, here are a few suggestions for you.

Please feel free to leave comments, suggestions or questions below!

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 -- Kinky Kraken & Samus Andress