First, the contest winners from last Friday's Win- a Crit contest are at the bottom of this post! :)
Now, today I have the pleasure of introducing you to one of my agency-sisters, debut author Tiffany Reisz. Tiffany is an amazing erotica author whose first novel, Siren, will release from Harlequin Spice in late 2011. She also has a little e-book nibble releasing TODAY from Spice Briefs, so if you want a little (okay a lot) of sexy in your day, go check it out! (over 18 crew only)
Now I know most of you probably lump erotic romance and erotica into the same category. But even though the two genres have a lot in common, there are also a number of differences. I'm a romance writer by trade, so I figured why give my take on the erotica genre when I can get an expert who's writing it to do so instead. So take it away Tiffany....
by Tiffany Reisz
First of all, thank you Roni for letting me worm my wicked way onto your blog to pimp my novella to your darling readers. You are a saint, at least in public. Thank you for letting me ramble. And yes--warning--I’m about to ramble.
I asked Roni what topics her readers might be interested in hearing about. She told me her blog readers were mostly writers so I could talk about the call from our agent Sara Megibow (she called, I said ‘yes’, I danced, I got my eyebrow pierced in celebration...the usual) or about the writing process (I sit, I type, I talk to the cats, I put on Latin music and samba in my loft when I’ve got writers block...the usual) OR I could talk about why I write erotica.
Why erotica? First of all, let’s define erotica. It’s easiest to define erotica by what it isn’t. If a book has both a romance in it and graphic sex and you can take the graphic sex out and still have a love story, it’s romance. The graphic sex doesn’t make it erotica. If you write a book and it contains both romance and graphic sex and you take the romance out and still have your basic story, it’s erotica. Erotica is about the sexual journey of a character. As the great Tina Turner said, “What’s love got to do with it?” Nothing if it’s erotica. In can include a love story, but it doesn’t need it.
Sidebar: My business cards read, “It’s not erotica until someone gets hurt.”
So why write erotica? Because sex is awesome. Truly unreservedly obnoxiously ridiculously gloriously wickedly awesome. Love requires patience, sacrifice, slogging through all the muck and mire of egos and money problems and child rearing and trips to the hospital. Love isn’t pretty. But sex is hot and powerful and life-altering. I’ve heard people refer to sex as the icing on the cake of love. I hate this analogy. Icing is all sugar and ridiculously bad for you. Sex isn’t bad for you. People who have frequent sex live longer, they look younger, they are healthier. Women who are frequently exposed to their male partner’s semen actually have more stable moods and less incidence of depression (this is real phenomenon). A bad marriage can destroy a woman’s self-esteem and sense of purpose and direction. A great sex life can put her on the top of the world.
Let’s talk about sex some more. I’m fascinated by it. I like sex, I love sex, I have sex, I write about sex. And God knows, I sure talk about it all the damn time. I’m the bad relative you don’t want hanging out with your kids. I’ll put in uncensored Eminem and the Beastie Boys in my car. I’ll swear in front of your kids and make dirty jokes. I told my fourteen year old cousin this weekend, “Sex is awesome. Just don’t do it in high school. But if you do, use birth control. Lots of it.” She said, “Wow, you’re the only adult who ever told me sex was good.”
Really? I’m the only adult who has ever told a super smart beautiful young woman that sex was good? That’s troubling. Sex IS good. Why is that a secret? Marriage is good too. Nobody hides that fact from kids. Nobody thinks that by telling a fourteen year old girl that marriage is good, that fourteen year old is going to run out and immediately get married. So why all the secrecy? Why all the shame? I want her to know sex is good so she’ll know it’s worth taking seriously, it’s worth thinking about, it’s worth doing right.
My first piece of writing I ever sold is coming out today at www.eHarlequin.com. It’s a novella entitled Seven Day Loan. The story is simple--a Dominant lends his submissive lover to a friend for a week. Since his wife’s death, the friend has been a recluse in his home and the Dominant hopes his feisty little submissive will help the widowed friend with his grief. It’s one week of pure sex between the widower and the submissive. Feelings do get involved but this is not a love story. It’s the story of a man who is healed by the power of sex, not the power of love. Did I write this story to change hearts and lives? No. I wrote it to give my readers fantasy fodder so it would improve their sex lives.
I guess I really don’t have one answer to the question of why write erotica?
Unless it’s, you know, why not?
Thanks so much to Tiffany for stopping by! Now if you want to download her novella, you can get it here or on Amazon. It's less than $3, so don't you owe yourself a little naughtiness today? :)
Now for the two winners of my and Miranda Kennealy's Win-A-Crit contest....
Congrats to Tahlia Newland and PK Hrezo!!!!
I'll be contacting the winners to see who wants which crit. Tahlia gets first choice. :)
Thanks to everyone who entered!
So, back to today's post? Have you ever read erotica? Why or why not? And feel free to throw out any questions you have for Tiffany. This is your chance to pick a debut author's brain! :)