Hana Shafi Signs of Some Good Smut

Everywhere I go, I’m seeing women carrying around a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey (or as I like to call it: Fifty Shades of What The Fuck?). Sure, the book is getting more women into exploring erotic literature, but when their first major erotic read is a subpar, badly written story that also perpetuates some serious misconceptions about BDSM, than I don’t think this is a great step towards sexual liberation for the lady folk. Not to mention the fact that it originally started off as Twilight fan-fiction (eek!). 

I hate to break it to all you Fifty Shades fans out there, but erotica needs a reboot! Cut the crap with these ridiculous plots about young and handsome billionaires or fucking in some remote cabin in the Swiss Alps. I’m all for erotic literature, including some fantastical sex scenes that one could only dream of, but where’s all the raw stuff gone? Why does the sex have to be with champion athletes, CEOs, or magical Vikings to capture people’s attention? For once, can it just be about the sex?

Here’s what I think. Writing good erotica (and reading good erotica) can be achieved with a few simple steps:

1. Avoid the need to constantly glamourize sex. I know that a quickie on a private jet with an enigmatic entrepreneur sounds really enticing, but it can also be pretty awesome when a reader can actually identify with a scenario. Sometimes, I'd like to read something that seems like it could actually happen and that wouldn’t require one or both lovers to earn millions or be a covert spy. 

2. Break boundaries. This is one category where fan-fiction generally takes the lead. Almost every erotica book sold in major book stores is a story about two white, cis-gendered, heterosexual lovers. Well, I think it’s safe to say that those aren’t the only people having sex, so let’s throw in some diversity here! This will especially help writers and readers who don’t fit into the above category and want characters that they can relate to. 

3. It’s called a penis and a vagina, a cock and a pussy. It is not a “meat wand” or a “love muffin.” He didn’t touch your “sex”, he rubbed your clitoris. I’m sorry if the human anatomy doesn’t have cool enough names, but there’s nothing cool about naming a woman’s vulva after a breakfast snack either. 

4. Make sure that any fetishes or kinky sex in the writing is being represented properly. This one is a specific shout out to Fifty Shades of Grey. Don’t just include a fetish because you think it might sound cool, educate yourself on it first. If you don’t actually know about the fetish you’re writing about, it will show.

5. And lastly, be filthy! If it’s your first time reading or writing erotica, don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed. Dive straight into it. Don’t be afraid to show what turns you on!

A final word for the ladies (or anyone at all) pretending that they’re only into reading erotica and nothing else: Just watch that porno, I know you’re curious. 

Comments

Hana, you are a goddess among women. I love this article, and you are a fantastic writer. Above all, you are a beautiful, intelligent woman who deserves to be respected. Please come marry me and stroke my galloping abs.

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