First of all, I think it’s important to define ‘erotica’. I suppose the easiest thing would be to describe it as literature that features all manners of sexual activity in graphic detail in a way that is designed to arouse and excite the reader. More often than not it is not the author’s personal experience, but simply something that pours from the deep recesses of their fantasy mind. The sort of thing that a couple might whisper to each other to tease and excite – but instead written down in explicit ways.
Let’s face it, it’s easier than ever before to get away with reading ‘naughty books’ when you can hide them under the disguise of a kindle or iPad cover. Back in the ‘olden days’ reading naughty fiction was confined to alone time; magazines hidden under mattresses, books stashed in the back of bathroom cupboards or kept in a locker at school.
I can remember the writing of Judy Blume getting me interested in reading the ‘naughty bits’ of books. I can’t remember the books being disapproved of by my parents as such, but we were encouraged to read things with a little more literary education and ‘class’; ‘My Friend Flicka’ or ‘Little Women’. Definitely no real naughty bits in those!
I think I was more concerned about the idea of a Judy Blume book potentially leading to a conversation about sex, or worse, sexual responsibility. At the time sex was the very last thing on my mind (I was a late developer believe it or not), I much preferred to read about it. So I kept the books, which were passed around secretly, very much at the bottom of my school bag.
Occasionally I would also flick through the books on my parents bedside table and see if I could find the naughty bits, or go to the adult reading section of the local library. Goodness knows why I was so thirsty for it – but I was.
Later my sister and I would send ourselves to sleep telling each other about our ‘sex factory’ ideas. (It isn’t as bad as it sounds!) We would invent and describe machines that women (we never featured the men in detail) would put themselves on to have sexual experiences with men. All we knew was the act of penetration – so it was never sensual or erotic – simply mechanic. Sometimes they would be suspended above the man and then bounced above them, sometimes they would be strapped with legs akimbo. It didn’t seem weird at the time – although we never talked about it with anyone else….until now!
So, my sexual mind has always been pretty active. My first boyfriend and I were very, very experimental. I loved it – we both did. But somehow I never ever considered sex as a career! But now, forming Brazen has awakened the young girl inside me. I LOVE to read erotic fiction and have even written some myself. I have also been asked to review some erotica too.
So why do I think you should try it? Well, apparently….the more sexual fantasies women have, the more sexual desire they experience. And according to The Journal of Sex Research, women who read romance or erotic novels have an astounding 74 per cent more sex with their partners than those who don’t. The study also concluded that not only were women readers having more sex, they were having better sex because they and their partners were more adventurous and playful.
Fantasy also allows us to imagine scenarios that we might not ever want or be able to engage in in real life. As sexual researcher Lonnie Barbach Ph.D pointed out in her seminal 1976 book, For Yourself, ‘‘A major advantage of fantasy as an aid to physical sexual stimulation, is that it requires no equipment and is always available.’’
In many ways erotica has formed my sexuality. I love to be talked to, and I love all of my senses to be awakened. I am a sensual lover; gone are the days of those fantasy machines in a factory!
In a recent study Audiobooks.com says that their data shows a rising trend in men listening to erotica, with a 25% increase over the last two years, reaching 32% of erotica audiobooks downloaded in 2017, up from 30% in 2016 and 24% in 2015. Plus, they are most likely to be listened to during commuting hours between 8am-10am and 4pm-6pm. So next time you see that man on the train smiling to himself…give him little wink.
I’ve been writing a few stories and wow – it is pretty much as exciting to write as it is to read. I have also tried reading it out loud to someone – and they loved that too. Plus, a whispered phone call read to someone far away could be exciting too – a vintage take on sexting I guess! It made me wonder whether I should start recording them as audio porn. Well – maybe one day!
So what should you be reading? Stylist came out with their this collection of raunchy reads to freshen up your bookshelf. What do you think? We’d love to hear your own favourite recommendations. And in the meantime – head to our own erotica and let us know what you think!