Yesterday marked the publication of my first ever eBook—ever book, really!—and said book just happened to be an erotic romance about a faery and some bikers… Yeah, I’m losing you already.
You probably think I’m some sort of sick weirdo, or someone piggybacking off of 50 Shades of Gray (which, by the way, I have never read). I guess I’m in between; I realize that there’s a need for erotica for women, and I happen to enjoy it myself—among just about every other genre—and I decided to try a hand at it for a contest. I won, hence my book.
I’ve been meeting many authors while I try to promote my book, and this erotic lit world is not nearly as seedy as people think it is. I still feel embarrassed to admit what it is to close family and homeschooling friends—several other authors are homeschoolers, so I need to make a note to ask how they do it!—and find myself referring to it as “supernatural romance,” which isn’t a lie, really…
As women, we are raised to be a lot of things. We are supposed to shoulder the burden, be ladies, not enjoy sex, not have confidence in our bodies or be athletic at all… Even though my parents didn’t teach me all of these things—they did teach me some of them—the media and our very culture, from our teachers to our friends’ parents, still do. I don’t know if I would like 50 Shades or not, but I do know that I like that women are finally getting their own erotica, that a sexual revolution that doesn’t just mean “freely have sex!” is happening. That revolution was important, for sure, but we still need more!
We need pornography and erotica that supports women rather than undermines them. We need to be comfortable with our own bodies. Watching boys versus girls speed skating with my daughter last week, I was amazed at the difference—as how the boys trusted their bodies and really sped around that rink, while the girls were so much more careful. Imagine how much fun we’d have with that kind of confidence, that kind of body intuition and trust that boys grow up with.
How about we create a “girls will be girls” phrase and start using it when our daughters climb rocks, ride bikes—or even find a dirty magazine from Mommy’s drawer? That’s right, we need to raise our kids with a healthy sexuality. That doesn’t mean letting them read our erotica, no, because that’s just not age appropriate. But that does mean that when we catch them touching themselves, we don’t scream at them to not do that “down there,” but tell them it’s normal and something to do in private, just like men tell their sons.
And I guess that means I need to own my fledgling erotic romance career, too. I’m just not bringing it up at play dates.