Saturday, 26 April 2014

Inspired by... something

A couple of years ago I wrote a blog post about Fifty Shades of Grey which set me on the path to writing a novel, which I never imagined in a million years would get published, but somehow it is scheduled for publication by Xcite Books, the UKs leading erotic fiction publisher.

But here’s the thing: Until I read Fifty Shades I had never read any kind of erotic fiction. And in the two years since I read Fifty Shades, I haven’t read any erotica either. It’s just not what I’m into.

Ironic really!

People look at me differently now that I’ve written a mucky book. But I’m actually quite reserved when it comes to sex. I’m not the person who make innuendos left right and centre. I’m the one who blushes when anyone makes a sex joke. I’m the last person that I would have expected to have written an erotic romance novel. But then, I suppose writing fiction is all about the imagination. Vampires and werewolves don’t exist but there’s thousands of novelists creating fantastical worlds that are full of supernatural creatures. Writing fiction is the art of writing about something you barely know and making it sounds like you’re an expert.

When I was offered my publishing deal, I thought it would be a good idea to buy a book from Xcite, to see how my novel fared against their previous publications. But I just didn’t know what to buy. But then I made contact with a fellow Xcite author, Danielle Austen, on Twitter and decided to buy her previous releases.

Her 3rd novel The Ancient’s Destiny, part 3 of the Prophecy Girl Trilogy was released today. I am halfway through the 2nd part, The Magi’s Daughter after reading through Part 1, The Magician's Lover in next to no time.

Her writing style is really nice, the story just flows along and you find yourself half way through the story when you think you’ve only read a couple of pages. A rare treat indeed. What I love about the series so far is that the world in which it is set provides a great story line, with or without the sex. Take the sex out and you have a great fantasy series instead. I always imagined that erotic fiction would be full of gratuitous sex scenes with no story line. Just like porn. And I’m sure there is a lot of erotic fiction that is like that.

Danielle is very honest about her writing and recently wrote a guest blog post talking about the differences between her first two novels and why the second one is far better. I won’t repeat it all here but suffice to say, there is a valuable lesson to be learned in reading too much into what other authors are doing, or what you think is expected.

When I read The Magician’s Lover I was worried by the amount of sex scenes because in my own novel, there’s barely a hint of sex until page 55 and the first kiss doesn’t happen until page 71.

Fifty Shades of Grey, whether you love it or hate it, enjoy the story but hate the writing, love Christian Grey or think he’s abusive, one thing it did was change the way people view erotic fiction. “Mummy Porn” is such a silly term, but lately when I mention that I’ve written a novel ‘with lots of sex in it’ people’s eyes light up and they say “oooh I’d like to read that.” I don’t know how realistic Fifty Shades is considered in BDSM circles, but the reason I think it worked so well is because the sex scenes drive the story. You can’t tell a story about a man who is only capable of having Dom/Sub relationships without describing the antics between him and his submissive. It stands to reason.

I’ve stressed a little bit about there being almost a lack of sex in my novel compared to other erotic fiction, but since reading Danielle’s blog post I have stopped worrying. Inspired by Night is a romance. With the right amount of sex for the story.

I am really looking forward to reading the final part of The Prophecy Girl trilogy. You can check out Danielle’s website here and check out her novels on Amazon.

Inspired by... something