Censorship of Erotic Authors – Do We Write Porn?

Well it’s been a hell of a bad period for authors who write anywhere close to erotic romance. What is erotic? Explicit sex. Yep we write about people doing the nasty. But you know what? We all crave passion and there isn’t a one of us who doesn’t have a kinky thought or desire. Don’t even try to tell me you don’t. Even the idiots involved in the moral majority have desires. If not – why are they in relationships? I have to ask in all of the bullshit regarding erotic romance – what is so bloody offensive to you? If you’re a parent and you’re not watching that your kid is drinking wine in sudswatching or reading – bad parent. It’s YOUR responsibility. Period. What about video games – seen a few popular ones lately? I’m waiting while you’re thinking.

I said this before and I’ll say it again – if any of you think that censorship of okay – where does it end. I’ll get off my soap box after this post as it’s time to develop a plan to fight this. I had other books removed today – yes the takedown was planned but it came two weeks early. It honestly felt like a death and I hate it. You have no idea how hard authors work if you aren’t one. This isn’t about hitting “The End” and walking away. The work is just beginning. I have already heard – “they have a right to sell or not sell”. Fine – take that attitude but when you can’t find your favorite musician or purchase even your favorite wine – come back and talk to me. Erotic authors have had a rash of bull over the last two years and it’s all about discrimination. Yes, there are some really bad stories out there – affectionately called daddy porn. They’re super sexed books about things like lactation and golden showers. I don’t write these but guess what – they sell a hell of a lot more books than I do. You have to wonder who is buying them – perhaps the great moral majority? Any form of censorship is wrong. WRONG. Let’s look at erotic versus porn. Oh and um – did you ever purchase a Playboy or Playgirl in your life – shame on you.

I’m only going to write about this once here but I realized recently the concept is still there with regard to erotic romances. I have been writing this for a couple of years sexy on sheetsnow and I am still amazed so many people aren’t sure about the difference. I had a reviewer even actually state a piece I had written was nothing more than porn. I had to scratch my head because the little piece certainly had sex sprinkled throughout including a hot scene with a police officer or two BUT it was also a sensual piece about two people who’d only talked over the Internet, were friends with another person and decided to finally meet. You get to feel their emotions etc throughout and there is a bit of a mystery too so I was a bit incensed the reviewer stated that. But to each their own. I thought I would give you my ideas as to the difference.

I think the first time I heard that I was a much better writer than to pen erotic because it simply isn’t serious writing I was shocked. By the fifth time I was enraged. Erotic romance writing isn’t serious writing? You have to be kidding me! I know, you might say that the words come from someone who’s never written before, but the truth is I have heard this from well spoken, very intelligent, published authors, albeit in other genres. Still, hearing the words mean that a large portion of the population don’t understand the difference. I’ve talked about this before, but given that I continue to hear objections and even jokes made about my character in general, I thought it was worthy to offer a part two. The majority of the time now I chalk it up to the fact people are still not sure how to take erotic romance and are a bit nervous they are reading them so they don’t tell their friends and family.

I hear too many times that there is little difference in erotic and porn. There is a huge difference. Erotic writing is a sensuous foray into the lives of couples and what they fantasize about. We all have fantasies and whether we are comfortable enough with our partner to discuss and/or entertain the notion, I can virtually guarantee that we all have something saucy we would love to try. As a writer, I am lucky enough to put my rather vivid imagination down on paper. There are many flavors of erotic from the paranormal to contemporary and even space aliens seem to enjoy a bit of kink, but the majority of stories that I have read boil down to two or more lovers engaging in an expression of love and lust. There’s a key word there. Lovers.

What exactly does having a lover mean? Generally that means that two or more people are engaging in a relationship and enjoying each other’s lives emotionally, spiritually and yes, physically. The stories penned can have wicked elements of voyeurism, BDSM, ménage, role-play and locations that cater strictly to Hedonism. They can involve the opposite or same sex or a delicious combination, but I can guarantee you that the two people are enticed, energized and hot for the moment. hot lick on nippleTrust also plays a significant role, especially in the darker sides of sex including BDSM, and we are authors would be remiss not to understand that.

I can hear the naysayers, what’s the difference in porn? Doesn’t what you describe have all those elements? Well, porn certainly caters to sex, sex and more sex. Erotic romance is just that, a story about romance. While some erotica stories are written with a particular kinky event in mind and usually is a shorter piece, erotic romance is a story that almost always ends in happy ever after or at least happy for now. That’s what publishers want to see and what our readers demand. Porn tends to have zero or a very limited story line. The object is to tell you about the sex period. You don’t care who the person is or what they do for a living. You simply hear about what they did with two men on the wild weekend away at the cabin in the woods. Erotic romance gives you the opportunity to get into their heads, their lives and more importantly, their hearts. The story is almost always touching and generally not without issues that create a conflict. The resolution is usually tasty indeed.

Let’s address the issue of whether or not it reflects on character. Hmmm…I think that for the majority of erotic romance writers, it involves our very wicked imagination. I dream in color and I dream constantly. I have to keep a notebook beside me at all times so I can scribble down my thoughts that come randomly and for no apparent reason. Why I can be in the middle of a grocery store and think about hiring a cop or two to perform a sinful act, who knows, but I go with the flow. It has nothing to do with my personal being and when I hear that I am lewd or dangerous, I smile and thank them for obviously I have done my job. Authors have a responsibility to make sure that the explicit content doesn’t get into the hands of minors so we make sure and identify our website, blogs and other promotional material that may contain lurid scenes. I belong to several yahoo groups and they tell you right up front whether you can post any “x” rated scene to promo your work and you have to identify. We also use Facebook and twitter as a teaser, but there is no way we can or would put anything on those public forums that would in any way appear too sexual. We just can’t do it.

Romances are the number one selling genre of book and while the industry has been hurt by the downturn in the economy and the moods of people in general, the fact remains that readers want to read a good story. E-books have brought about a change in the publishing world and I think we’ll see more in the future, but readers will always be there. They will always want to be entertained and reminded that there is a fantasy world out there. Do you really think Amazon doesn’t look at their numbers? If they don’t then you have to really wonder about why you purchase from the bozos in the first place. And Kobo? They’ll learn and hopefully go away into the vast wasteland of sheer stupidity.

I had a friend tell me tonight – next it’s banning books. Hmmm… A witch hunt boycott amazonperhaps? It is the season. Right? There is a petition going around against these places who so believes they are God like to censor. I do hope you sign it at least in support. You don’t have to like Fifty Shades of Smut – but you have to believe in the power of the pen and in freedom of speech. If not, we’re lost as a society.

Something for you to think about.

Cassandre

Oh and I’m on a radio show hosted by my good friend Bennet Pomerantz he set up for this very reason. Join us Thursday night at 6:30 pm EST. Let’s talk about what harm it’s doing.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bennetpomerantz/2013/10/17/anything-goes-censorship-isnt-fair-special

About Cassandre Dayne

Cassandre Dayne is the pseudo for the best selling author of romantic suspense and thrillers
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4 Responses to Censorship of Erotic Authors – Do We Write Porn?

  1. Kay says:

    I was suprised when some books that had been in my recommended section on Amazon were suddenly not to be found. What a disappointment for me. Set up my Smashwords account today!

    Like

    • behalle says:

      Everyone needs to step up to the plate on this. At least the major publications are starting to notice and write articles and they are in support of authors. So sorry that happened to you as well

      Like

  2. Anna Wells says:

    I write and read erotic romance, but what started the whole witch hunt were publications concerning like “Don’t Daddy (Forced Virgin Seduction)” and “Daddy’s Invisible Condom (Dumb Daughter Novelette).” Guess what, I do have a problem with books that celebrate rape and incest. This isn’t as easy as censorship is wrong. I think the issue is a bit more complex than that.

    Like

    • behalle says:

      Anna: There are authors who write that, but it’s easy to tell from the tag lines and synopsis they use. I don’t condone anything sick or illegal period BUT you have to have some level of intelligence to procure a system to actually look at the books – not just arbitrarily take them down. That’s ridiculous. And if they are going to take them down – they better do it across the board, i.e. Fifty Shades or there will be lawsuits. Yes, it is clear and blatant censorship.

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