I learn something new all the time, and that’s the way it is with all of us, even the most experienced. Like I’ve probably mentioned before, I’ve been reading erotica off and on for many years, and I thought I knew what this genre was about.
You see, I’ve read mixed reactions from readers of Erotica, and I seem to find two camps of thought: The first camp complains that the plot and characters are not fleshed out, and that there doesn’t seem to be much of a deep soul connection between the characters. AND (hold on to your hats, folks), the sex is way too pornographic, purposeless, and the author has way too much of it in the story.
What? I thought erotica was supposed to have a lot of sex, and graphic to boot. Now here’s what camp two says: We don’t feel the stories are pornographic at all, the sex is described and written just right, and fits in there with most erotic writing. Though some scenes are a bit extreme the essence is captured in the most tactful way. In some scenes, what could have been seen as disgusting was actually written in an enticing, appealing way. We enjoy the storyline, which flows well, and the characters are engaging.
Okay, so now I’m confused. Or was confused, because I think I’m beginning to see the light to this whole thing. In most erotica stories I’ve read, many characters are found engaging in sex either through chance encounters where the lust is riding high, or the character knows someone who leads them on a carnal adventure. Many times these stories present characters who just want to have and enjoy sex: for the pure, simple fun of it.
Erotic romance, appears to focus more on the storyline, characters, and the few sex scenes that are added may be a little spicier than what you’d find in a regular romance novel. And there is the “happily ever after.”
In looking at this situation, I’m beginning to see, like most instances, there will be readers who want to enjoy a more simple, entertaining read, while others will want something with more depth. When looking at a piece of work, you’ll always get two camps of thought, no matter what you as the author set out to achieve. As I continue to write, I’ll still want beta readers to look at my work to make suggestions, but in the end, I’ll still find the need to write the stories the way I want them to be. People will either connect to and enjoy what I’ve produced, or not. It’s a mixed bag, for sure.
The more I look at my work, I see that my Pleasure House project and Dance of Desire fit in the Erotica category through and through. I’ve now even gone so far as to put a warning sentence at the beginning of my product description, indicating that if you’re looking for the traditional, sweet, soulful romance story with a few spicy sex scenes, this work is not for you. Or something to that effect. You see, I want my customers to know what they’re getting–or not.
Tell me what you think when you’re viewing a book in the erotica category. Are you wanting the true enticing, fun erotica, characters who just want to have sex and enjoy it? Are you looking for a deeper story line? Or are you looking for a nice, fuzzy-feeling, warm-your-heart romance story, with a couple of extra spicy sex scenes to flavor it up a bit?