Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Summer Vacation and a Writing Tip.

by James R. Kincaid

Open Road Series, Vol. 1

Even their guidebooks – Worst Places to Eat, Wackiest Roadside Attractions, and Don’t Go Here! – offer no guidance. These two 16-year-olds are off on a summer-long road trip, Los Angeles to Atlanta, without any clear idea what they are doing, what they might run into, or what they might discover along the way.

They don’t even know one another. Wendell regards Tyler with uneasiness and something like lust; Tyler thinks of Wendell with curiosity and contempt, mostly contempt.

They are launched on this adventure (in a luxury motorhome, of all things) by Wendell’s mother, who supposes that a trip into the unknown – weaponless and clueless – will cause her son to flower. Tyler comes along to see if she can make it through without beheading, or bedding, Wendell.

Porn or Erotica? -- writing tip

Question: Thanks for answering my questions, from before. Maybe you can help again. As you may recall, I write steamy romances and have published some of them with Elora's Cave. A new member has joined our writers' group. And when I read a scene that I wanted help with, she didn't even wait for my questions, she just jumped right in and said, "That's just nothing but porn!"

I had opened my time by reminding everyone that I write erotica and was insulted by her reaction to say the least. The whole meeting degenerated into a long discussion of what porn is and isn't, while nobody seemed interested in that fact that erotica is a genuine form of literature.

Answer: An age-old question. I'm sorry they gave you a bad time. Given time to think, one of two things will happen. Either she will broaden her horizons, or will decide that your group isn't the place for her to develop her literary skills. All the others have heard you read before, have read your books, and have not objected in the past, have they? Just give them time to think, okay?

Evidence that erotica has long been a literary art form, comes from the dictionary meaning of the word: derived from classic Greek and meaning, "an artistic work having an erotic or literary theme." (Eros being the ancient Greek god of Love).

Pornography is defined by the dictionary as also coming from ancient Greek, and meaning, "writing about prostitutes" with the more modern definition given as "the depiction of erotic behavior (as in pictures or writing) intended to cause sexual excitement.

Erotica has also been know to cause sexual excitement, but that is only one element of its creation. Pornography has no value of artistry or eloquence.

My own definition -- which may not be the same as yours, or even the Webster's definitions shown above, is a little different than either.

To me, it's easy to tell the difference: Pornography denigrates women. Erotic writing glorifies them.

Sex scenes in pornography often involves degrading acts, violence, and the women are depicted as depraved and enjoying everything that is done to them, however repulsive or painful.

In erotic writing sex acts are between two people who really care about one another and who have made a substantial commitment, and the acts depicted are an expression, perhaps even a glorification, of the emotions they share.

I have read your work, both in your class, and in your books, and I'd have said some your books qualify as "erotic" but certainly not the alternative.

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