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  • What's a fuck when what I want is love?

    Henry Miller

    I went through a dilettantish and quite hilarious delusion for awhile that I wanted to be an erotic writer in the genre of Anais Nin, (who for me stands as one of the great writers of all time). I loved Henry Miller's adventures, along with the erotically charged works of D.H. Lawrence and John Donne.

    But I kept coming up against a unique problem: Erotica qua erotica gets real boring real fast for me. Perhaps that is simply a function of the fact that I live more in my body than in my mind and I can only deal with the abstract for so long before I check out entirely, even in the best erotic writing.

    As Korzybski reminds us (and I love quoting this):“The map is not the territory.” I found the “territory” much, much more interesting than writing about it…:) In fact, I believe that writing erotica can often be a substitute for having a healthy and healing sex life. Maybe one of the missions of erotic literature for our time would be to see that it is more supportive of sexual healing and play, rather than sexual violence.

    What tends to happen now, it seems (and I study this stuff from time to time, as a Cultural Anthropologist must do!) is that writers, to hold on to their readers, find it necessary to continue to escalate the strange, the harmful, the violent and the bizarre - for sheer shock value.

    But what goes on in these books, (revealing and mapping in often nauseating detail some of the more extreme and sick sexual practices of our time), is neither sane nor healthy, and more often than not ends up in a most grim and depressing place, with suicides, murders or extreme physical mayhem. (Tie in here perhaps to the rising and deplorable trend toward extreme violence toward women in recent films.)

    Some of the most acclaimed erotic writers of our time have been totally mixed up, sexually confused, without boundaries, and have ultimately ended up in very sad and bad places, and eventually dead of AIDS.

    In my own experience, I found that as a writer, I was much more suited to be what I might call an “Erotic Satirist.” After all, there is a lot that is just plain silly about the sexual act when it is relentlessly mapped on paper. Is this all there is, one must eventually ask?

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