Writing Erotic Literature: Ultimate Top 20 Tips

 

Anaïs Nin and Henry Miller whiled away many an evening debating their top 20 tips:

see mine below…

You’re never too old to write (or read) erotica

CX0eBU0W8AAtRfb

There’s a fetish for everything

CX0igpfWsAM0AKX

Cultivate characters’ individuality and inner charm

CX0hDYSWYAEWMqV

Men are optional 

ladies boxing

Hats are optional (especially at orgies)

CX0oCYCWQAATgk3

Helmets work best in size extra-large

CX04LiiWEAQ3IMF

Aliens like sex

   CX0wQ9QWcAA7bYu

So do sea monsters

20,000 Leagues under the sea

So do dinosaurs

dinosaur love

So does Bigfoot

yeti bigfoot

Tied up ticklings can be titillating

CX0k9JhWcAEeJjH

There’s more to erotic fiction than romance

CX0qkEsW8AAFyme

The tongue can be mightier than the sword

CX0jiMSWAAAxyJr

Tangos can be for more than two

CX0iMlrWAAAXdXh

Temper pleasure with pain

CX0hrLgWMAAFWFR

Wield words with the care of an artist’s brush

CX0fK2YWwAEkm58

An unexpected perspective can prove thrilling

CX0bsrIWcAIGSa1

It’s good to innovate

hair pinned to washing line

Inspire playful urges

CX0W2FUWsAAuNDp

   

Render the reader lightheaded with arousal

victorian fainting fit

We all like to be shocked (just a bit) 

CX09TExWQAI7Han

Happy writing (and reading)

See how I do it here…

Why I Write

Thank you to the lovely Kay Jaybee, for first hosting this interview.

 

I want. I want. I want so many things.

I want to explore what might be or might have been.

I want to rewrite the past and create whatever future I choose.

I want to reshape ‘the truth’, to view the world from inside other skins.

 

Emmanuelle de Maupassant quoteAs Sylvia Plath said: ‘I can never be all the people I want and live all the lives I want. I want to live and feel all the shades, tones and variations of mental and physical experience possible in life.’

Like many writers (I suspect), I have a laptop stuffed with snatches of writing and story outlines, ideas I’ve been exploring, thoughts I’ve spilled out, tens of thousands of words as yet unseen. Some of my most brutal writing is there: my resentments; the pain scraped from my bones and the pit of my belly; desire pushed from the slow ache of my cunt.

When you write from that deep place it changes you; all the creatures from your dark corners come creeping out.

It’s damn liberating!

When I write, I don’t need to hold back. The greatest challenge is only that I be honest with myself, writing what I want to rather than what someone else might think I should be writing.

Cautionary Tales Emmanuelle de Maupassant quoteI’m often asked why I don’t write a ‘real’ book (in other words, one that doesn’t include sex). Bizarrely, exploring sexuality and desire on the page isn’t celebrated in the same way as the exploration of other human themes, such as grief or unrequited love. No matter that literature exploring sexuality often does so in the context of far wider human experience. Think of Jeanette Winterson and Fay Weldon; they cover it all. They aren’t looking to someone else for permission as to what they write.

There are things that won’t let me rest, themes I keep returning to, unpicking the knots. For me, it’s the desire for freedom, to be less constrained by social conventions, to speak my mind, and to speak the truth of my body too.

Other authors’ works which draw me back time and again explore, overtly or covertly, the themes of madness and imprisonment: as in Sarah Waters’ Affinity, Fingersmith and Little Stranger, in Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights and the novels of Wilkie Collins. What is it to be ‘mad’ and are our minds ever ‘free’? Angela Carter and Michel Faber, in their gorgeously rich prose, tackle these themes too.

In my case, this search for freedom has led me towards the erotic genre.

When I began, I remember feeling as if I were hacking off the outer layers of myself.

Emmanuelle de Maupassant quote - Twitter sizedIt felt dangerous. I was standing on a cliff edge, and that sense of stepping off the precipice made me feel sick, but also elated. I felt alive. I knew that I wouldn’t be able to turn back, because how can you when you’ve tasted freedom?

You’re pulling the words from where they resist being found but if you lock them away, they’ll squash the life out of you.

Everything I write draws on something from within myself. Yes, it’s fiction, but the heart of the story always reveals my preoccupations. My fears prowl the pages, as well as my fantasies.

As Lidia Yuknavitch says: ‘What is underneath what you want? And what is underneath that?’

vivid flowers with text kindleI want to explore the bittersweet; those things we rarely dare look at, feelings intense and wild and violent and unexplainable. On the page, I can play out anything my heart bird cover talesdesires, explore anything, be anything.

You may visit my author page on Amazon here

Or follow me on Facebook.

 

‘The Gentlemen’s Club’ – by Emmanuelle de Maupassant

Praise for ‘The Gentlemen’s Club’ – available for download from all Amazon sites – vivid flowers with text kindleincluding Amazon UK and Amazon USA. 

Stylist Magazine UK

‘Sensuous’ and ‘mind-blowing’ with ‘beautifully crafted prose’.

Twitter

‘I could not go to sleep thinking about your book. I stayed up and read it cover to cover. The most erotic novel I recall reading.’ – Guillermo Tomas

‘An elegantly written piece of period erotica. I was engrossed and highly aroused.’ – Sir to You

Amazon US

‘Erotica – and historical fiction – doesn’t get any better than this. If you haven’t read it, buy it.’ – Seattle Reader

‘A beautiful example of erotic literature – one that shows the genre to be capable of intelligence and elegance. Wonderful and truly impressive.’ – Malin James

Voracious Reader Reviews

‘Have some type of cooling method handy when you sit down to read this.  There’s just something so deliciously naughty about the steamier seedier side of things when everyone is supposed to be so stiff and proper. I simply love it. This is well-Victorian bed lady reclining erotic thoughtswritten, creative and hot. Enough said. Now, go. Run and get it, if you dare…’ – Carol

Erotica for the Big Brain

‘Emmanuelle de Maupassant brings a refreshing confidence to her writing. Her work has already begun to enrich the genre, and readers need look no further than “The Gentlemen’s Club” to understand why.’ – Terrance Aldon Shaw

victorian corset adultery

Escapology Reviews

‘The Gentleman’s Club turned me into a pool of jelly. So hot it set the bathroom on fire and a fire crew had to hose me down’ – Vikki Heaven

Amazon UK

‘A masterpiece of erotica: every paragraph has you begging for the next. An exciting story of lust, passion and romance. Sexually explicit, but not offensive; it will broaden your sexual mind and sexual appetite. If you buy one book this year, make it this one. I am in great anticipation of the follow up.’ – Pauline

csdl51lxgaa4lbt-jpg-large‘I came across this author quite by accident. I am glad that I did! I thoroughly enjoyed this erotic novella as, unlike some of this genre, it was able to hold my interest from an intellectual and visceral stand point. If only some Men of my acquaintance had similar talents! I particularly appreciated the theme of a liberated woman, throwing off the strictures of society (still resonates in this day and age)’ – Melanie

 Amazon Canada

‘This book. This book! This is the book I wish I had written. The Alice Wilkes Ziegfeld Follieslanguage…oh, the language! It grabs you and propels you smack dab into Victorian London from the first paragraph. It weaves a net about you, it draws you in. Iit has you shouting ‘yes, yes, yes,’ like Meg Ryan at the diner, because finally there is a well-rounded, well-written, exquisitely crafted story which redeems the genre.’ – Julia Rist

take a peek via the ‘look inside’ feature on Amazon

Relentless and Destructive: a review of Libidinous Zombie

The full version of this review appears on Cara Sutra’s Pleasure Panel, alongside others.

What is theLibidinous Zombie - an erotic horror anthology nature of our erotic drive, relentless and destructive, the ‘Libidinous Zombie‘ within? This innovative collection takes up the torch, and dares to lead us down the twisting passageways of the labyrinth, each  author unravelling the threads in their own way, leaving their footprints for us to follow. As Remittance Girl describes it, here is an anthology which presents ‘the delicious marriage between horror and eroticism’.Libidinous Zombie - an erotic horror anthology

From the dystopian setting of a post-apocalyptic world (Tamsin Flowers‘ poignant tale) to the confines of an early 20th century mental asylum (Malin James‘ compelling depiction of descent into the madness of sexual obsession) we are taken on a shadow journey, where nothing is quite as it seems.

Their charm lies in the unexpected, in their twists, as tLibidinous Zombie - an erotic horror anthologyhey arouse and horrify, provoking both disgust and a compulsion to continue.

Libidinous Zombie - an erotic horror anthologyThese tales offer not just entertainment but a deeper commentary on what we choose to conceal, or reveal. They offer insight into the voracious nature of lust, and into our darker side, into the thoughts we rarely admit to. And, they offer warning: be careful of what you wish for, and how you behave.Libidinous Zombie - an erotic horror anthology

Follow the rich pathways of the maze, seek out the minotaur, and, when you find him, look deep into his eyes. There, you’ll see your own self reflected, your own image, prompted by the author’s lens. Remember that each reader brings their own interpretation to the page, and what you find in the labyrinth reveals your own preoccupations, as much as those of he or she who wrote the words.

Enjoy the feast: rich and spicy; grotesque and violent; heart-breaking and bittersweet.

Devour these dishes course by course, without rushing. Savour them to the full.

Libidinous Zombie - an erotic horror anthology

 

A collection worthy of your time, featuring:

Rose Caraway, Raziel Moore,Erotic HorrorRemittance Girl, Allen Dusk, Janine Ashbless, Jade. A. Waters, Malin James and Tamsin Flowers.

Macabre Folk Tales

cautionary-tales-moth-cover-for-kindleFrom Cautionary Talesthis story is inspired by the folk customs and superstitions of Russia and Eastern Europe.

Against Murder

The Likho is an evil one-eyed fiend from the forest, known for its fondness for human flesh.

A moment’s temptation takes us on a wrong path. On that path may lurk foul fiends.

A dairy farmer was once married to a woman so cantankerous and contrary that there was no living with her. If he asked her to get up early and help him milk the cows, she’d lie in bed until noon. If he requested pancakes, she’d be sure to cook beetroot soup. If he dared suggest that she muck out the cowshed, he’d find a pile of dung in his boots.

In addition, she found constant fault with his appearance and behaviour: his breath reeked of garlic and his armpits of onions; his back was an eruption of boils; he always had grease in his beard and cabbage between his teeth; and he slurped food like an animal. One night, she went too far, scoffing that he was useless between the sheets, since no children had ever been conceived there. She complained that she’d rather share her bed with a pig.

Bolder titles - eyes at window cover TalesDriven beyond all patience, he took a pillow and held it over her head until her arms flailed no more. It took but a minute and, immediately, a blissful hush settled on the house. He wondered why he’d never thought of it before.

Of course, when evil thoughts and deeds are abroad, they attract certain creatures and crawlers, as we restless spirits know all too well. Man’s wicked folly draws them close.

A malevolent forest demon, the Likho, sniffed the scent of violence and came creeping from its winter lair, bare feet stepping steadily through the snow. Dark lips contorted in a grin of anticipation, revealing yellow teeth and blackened tongue.

The fiend headed into the village and, as was its wont, paused to check upon the hens. It stroked those sitting on an uneven number of eggs, its filthy talons tickling where it might have rent asunder. Claws trailing over fences and gates, it made its inevitable path, drawn towards the stench of ill deeds.

Finally, the beast arrived at the house of the dairyman. It peeked through the shutters with its one eye and there, by the morning light, watched as the husband laid out his wife on the table, so that her feet faced the door, as was the custom.

The dairyman tucked her nightgown round her toes and opened the window a little, despite the nip of frosty air.

‘Off you go,’ he declared, ‘Fly away elsewhere.’

On the beams above the warm stove, the ghost of the murdered woman sat grumpily, Cautionary Tales  Emmanuelle de Maupassant - We are the shiver on your uneasy flesh, The creep of the unknown on your skinglaring down at her husband, quite as she had done in life.

So it is that we, the unhappily departed, are often obliged to haunt the places of our damnable demise. Little does man know of this shadowed realm, between light and dark, and the torments that bind us so closely to the world where once we drew breath.

Having dispatched his wife, the dairyman’s thoughts turned to the shapely widow next door. With a spring in his step, he donned his best shirt and hat, and sauntered round to see her, intending that they be married as soon as the burial rites were completed.

The widow was flattered by the alacrity of his proposal, considering that breath had barely left the wife’s body, and accepted gladly. So eager was the hussy to take the woman’s place that she suggested moving in straight away – on the pretext of cleaning and cooking for him in his time of distress.

The Likho had waited until the man walked down the path and had slithered in through the open window, surveying the fresh corpse and the ghost, still hunched above and scowling.

‘Ha!’ cackled the fiend, ‘I expect you’d like revenge on that husband of yours. Murder shouldn’t go unpunished, and no creature enjoys delivering chastisement as much as I. What about giving him a taste of his own medicine? If you’d be so kind as to lend me your body, I’ll set him dancing to my tune.’

Emmanuelle de Maupassant Crook Your Finger Quote from Cautionary TalesThe wife’s spectre grimaced and nodded, at which the wicked Likho stripped off the nightgown, then the dead woman’s pliant skin, peeling back the flaccid folds. These it left in a slack heap.

It gobbled her flesh and sucked the bones clean. These it hid behind the stove, before inserting itself inside the empty, wrinkled carcass, taking the former position of the corpse. Its fat tongue swiped the last juices from around its lips.

Cautionary Tales Emmanuelle de Maupassant manWhen the husband returned home, all was as it had been; there was not a speck of blood to be seen, although the strangest smell of rotten eggs lingered.

The neighbours came to pay their respects and offer condolences, and the comely widow served pancakes and pirozhki dumplings to the mourners. A few eyes rolled; it required no fortune telling to see which way the wind was blowing. However, life goes on, and the villagers agreed that the new couple were a good match. His first wife had been a harridan, with few good words for anyone; none would miss her.

Once the guests had left, it wasn’t long before the man and the floozy tumbled into bed, tittering and fondling. So intent were they that neither noticed the corpse sitting up to watch them.

After some minutes, the Likho called out, ‘That hardly seems polite. I’ve only been dead a few hours.’

The widow screamed and the dairyman jumped up so quickly that his head cracked on the

Emmanuelle de Maupassant quote from Cautionary Tales Ambition, envy and greed_ we know what you covet, and what you covet draws ceiling. Both assumed that the corpse had returned to life to berate them.

Kneeling on the floor, the man pleaded with his departed wife for forgiveness. At this, the widow raised an eyebrow. She’d been ignorant of bedding a murderer, although the news was no real surprise.

The Likho raised the corpse’s mouth in a leer, replying, ‘Not to worry. I’ll join you. I’m sure there’s room for three. My feet are cold, so I’d appreciate you warming them for me.’

With that, the devilish creature hopped into bed and patted the covers, indicating that the husband should clamber in. The fiend lay between the two, a cold hand placed on the thigh of each. It then went to sleep, snoring loudly through the night, while the pair lay awake, too horrified to move or speak. The strumpet could hardly deny that she’d climbed into her neighbour’s bed more quickly than etiquette allowed, and now she was facing the consequences.

In the morning, the corpse sat at the table and declared to the widow, ‘I’m feeling quite peckish. I suppose you can cook? A plate of draniki if you please and look sharp about it.’

Too terrified to argue, the woman began her task. Each draniki she set down was gobbled in a single gulp, replaced by the demand for more. The Likho rapped the husband’s knuckles when he tried to take one, telling him to wait until it’d had its fill. Eventually, every potato in the house had been eaten.

‘I’m still rather hungry,’ admitted the corpse. ‘Why don’t you go and shoot some rabbits? We might have a stew.’ It inclined its head towards the door, to indicate that the husband had better get a move on.

As soon as he had departed, the Likho sat back in the chair contentedly. ‘I suggest that you milk the cows while he’s gone and then clean the house,’ the corpse commanded.

skeleton bAll day, the widow tended to the animals, scrubbed and polished, until she was ready to swoon. As soon as the Likho saw this, it clapped its hands in glee and split the woman neatly in two with a flick of its talons.

Such are the rewards of those who crave illicit pleasure and who care not how their comforts are attained. A moment’s temptation takes us on a wrong path, on which may lurk foul fiends.

As before, it feasted on the tender flesh and licked the bones clean. The skin it put to one side and, casting off the wrinkled wrapper of the murdered wife, slipped inside the new.

The demon tossed the bedraggled old remnants behind the stove, with all the bones, and gave itself a shake, adjusting to its new costume.

It winked at the wife’s ghost, still perched overhead.

‘Don’t worry. I’ve not forgotten him!’ the fiend assured her.

It preferred the shape of this skin, which was smoother and altogether more plump and comfortable. More fun was to be had before it had finished.

When the man returned (without any rabbits, since all had eluded his gun and traps) he was delighted to see that the animated corpse of his old wife had departed and that his new ladylove appeared in good spirits.

‘My darling, I persuaded her to leave,’ cooed the demon. ‘Now, come and give me a kiss.’

The Likho locked him in a firm embrace and wrestled him onto the bed.

‘Goodness me,’ exclaimed the dairyman. ‘Gentle my love. You’re like a bear tonight. You’ll crush the breath out of me.’

The beast gave a girlish giggle. ‘If I’m a bear then you must be my honey,’ it simpered.hand and face

It then squeezed the man so tightly that he fell into a faint. In a trice, he was rent down the middle, becoming a tasty supper for the evil creature. Once the flesh had been gobbled, the Likho stuffed the skin and bones behind the stove and retired to bed.

At dawn, the demon sprang awake, ready to see what the day might bring. By the door, it noticed a basket of mushrooms, brought from the forest by the dairyman the day before. With a flip of the pan, the fiend fried up the delicacies, serving them with a dollop of sour cream and swallowing them utterly in three great gulps.

So self-satisfied was the beast that it hadn’t noticed the basket brimming only with poisonous varieties: chosen by the dairyman in hope of finally sending his corpse wife into the hereafter.

The creature clutched its stomach, torn by a churning ache. Such was its torment that the Likho flung off the widow’s skin and bolted out of the door, back to the forest.

It left behind an empty house, but for the graveyard behind the stove and the shrivelled casing of the floozy, cast onto the floor.

As for the wife’s disgruntled spirit, it had found the past days’ events more than agreeable Emmanuelle de Maupassant Cautionary Tales snowy footprintsand was content, at last, to leave.

 

Visit my Amazon page for more.cautionary-tales-moth-cover-for-kindle

 

Battle-born: Feisty Females in Fiction

Looking for female characters with a brain? With attitude? With something to say? Are the novels you’re reading measuring up?

 

Romance addicts might be hoping that a hunky man is waiting at the end of the rainbow, but isn’t it great to feel that there’s more on a woman’s mind than just a wedding band? She may be driven by the pursuit of love, but let’s also see her achieve self-love (and self-knowledge) along the way.

 

We can do worse than encounter Austen’s JENNIFER EHLE - Elizabeth Bennett - feisty females in fiction Elizabeth Bennet (Pride and Prejudice) who oozes independence, wit and pragmatism. She bags Darcy in the end, but not until he’s gone the extra mile to prove himself worthy of her. Most satisfyingly, she learns to better understand her own foibles in the meantime.

 

vivien-leigh - scarlett-oharaIt was Southern Belle Scarlett O’Hara (Gone With The Wind) and Vanity Fair’s Becky Sharp who first lit my fire. Equally conceited and ambitious, they thought nothing of defying convention. Here were women who might have something to teach me. While Scarlett refuses to allow roguish Rhett Butler, or the inconvenience of civil war, to interfere with her determination to enjoy life, the flirtatious Miss Sharp manipulates her way up the social ladder. Both endure trials and the humiliation of plans thwarted, but retain their inner spark, finding their own Becky Sharp Vanity Fair strong women in  literature version of contentment by the closing chapters. Their selfish acts are allowed to stand, without excuse or pardon, leaving us to judge as we may.

 

As a teenager, I remember blushing at Defoe’s sexually effusive Moll Flanders and being repulsed at her casting off of various children like so much unnecessary baggage, but I also delighted at her social scheming, her sense of Moll Flanders - Alex Kingston - strong women in fiction adventure, her impervious determination and her high spirits. She was infinitely preferable to the melancholy ‘victims’ and infuriating ‘saints’ of Hardy and Dickens.

 

Jane Eyre was no Moll, lacking even a speck of glamour, but she hooked Rochester with her own brand of quiet confidence and intelligence, scorning his perceived right to ‘command’ her. She declares: ‘superiority depends on the use made of time and experience’. I couldn’t help cheering her as she withstood theJane Eyre - Bronte - strong women in fiction familiar inventory of hardships, relying on her own powers of endurance to prevail.

 

Intent on showing that there is more to life than the frivolities of a romantic dalliance, Max Beerbohm presents femme fatale Zuleika - Max BeerbohmZuleika Dobson. She gains entrance to the privileged, all-male domain of Oxford University, whose students become uniformly infatuated by her beauty. Then, the ‘sillies’, forlorn at her refusal to accept a husband, make a pact of suicide, drowning in the river to ‘prove’ their devotion. The loss is not great; the academics barely notice the absence of the young men and impervious Zuleika heads to Cambridge

 

Of course, female protagonists don’t need to be young, sexy or beautiful to capture our attention – and their stories can exist outside of the realm of romance. Think of Agatha Christie’s outwardly demure Miss Marple: quietly Agatha Christie - Miss Marple - feisty strong women in fiction determined on sniffing out killers, as she knits yet another pair of baby booties. As one police inspector puts it, she may be ‘fluffy and dithery in appearance but, inwardly, she’s as sharp and shrewd as they make them’. Of herself, she remarks: ‘Inertia does not suit me and never has’.

 

Fellow detective Mary Russell, written by Laurie R King, shows the legendary Mary Russell - Laurie R King Sherlock how it’s done, not only working beside him but often eclipsing Holmes. Over a series of novels, Mary grows in stature and experience, providing an intriguing, and often amusing, foil to Conan Doyle’s snooty sleuth. Go Mary!

 

In heart-wrenching contrast, the bleak yet compulsive Scandi-Noir Millennium Trilogy has given us Lisbeth Salander. Having read the books in my 40s, I wonder what I would have made of the vengeful violence meted out by this fiercely ‘anti-social’ heroine in my teenage years. Brutality against women permeates the lisbeth salander - strong women in fiction - Millennium Trilogy - Larssonstory at all levels, to a degree that obliges us to accept the ‘justice’ of Lisbeth’s actions. Although she lives firmly outside of conventions, she retains a need for love and companionship. Infinitely complex, she is one of most compelling female characters of our modern age, exemplifying resilience in the face of adversity.

 

The Song of Ice and Fire series (brought to the screen as our beloved Game of Thrones) presents a dazzling host of powerful female characters: resolute Arya and her mother, Catelyn Stark, female warriors Ygritte and Brienne of Tarth, cunning Margaery Tyrell Game of Thrones  Song of Ice and Fire  Mother of Dragons Strong women in fiction and her grandmother, Melisandre and Cersei Lannister, and the brave and noble Mother of Dragons, Daenerys Targaryen: a chocolate box of infinite satisfaction. In terms of ‘role models’ there’s something to appeal to every woman, of every age.

 

Young Adult fiction also offers us some corkers: His Dark Materials’ Lyra, Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games, Hermione Granger of Harry Potter fame and Divergent’s Tris. They celebrate not only bravery but compassion and intellect and, most importantly, assertion of individuality.

 

My vote is for women who whisper encouragement long after I’ve closed the pages, urging me to be strong and self-reliant, marching to my own drum.

 

Raise your ‘bravo’ by adding your feisty favourites below…

 

(For more feisty females, you may like to visit my Author Page on Amazon)