Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Keeping the Bedroom Door Open: Why Erotic Romance Isn’t Porn (Disproving the Common Myth)

Our guest blogger, JESS DEE, writes her top selling erotic romance novels under a pseudonym so the racy content of her books doesn't colour the way the community perceives her. Yet all will be revealed on Sunday 1 September at 4.45pm when she speaks at A Day at the SJWF. Just don't confuse her work for porn. 

As a romance author, I am often asked why I choose to write pornography. My answer is simple: I don’t write pornography. Nor do I write erotica, smut, mommy porn or soft porn—all terms loosely bandied around since the phenomenal success of Fifty Shades of Grey.

I write erotic romance, stories about characters falling in love and struggling to overcome any odds they may face in order to be together and find their happy ending. Unlike other genres of romantic fiction, erotic romances have fully described and explicit love scenes, all of which are central to the plot and the development of the romantic relationship. At no point is the bedroom door ever closed to the reader.

Erotic romance is not limited to the traditional idea of two characters (a man and a woman) falling in love. Non-traditional relationships, such gay, lesbian and bisexual relationships, as well as ménage/multiple partner relationships are popular choices among readers and writers.

So let’s clear up the common misconception that erotic romance, erotica and porn are one and the same. I've taking the liberty of borrowing internationally best-selling author Sylvia Day’s definitions of the three terms to highlight their differences:

Porn: stories written for the express purpose of causing sexual titillation. Plot, character development, and romance are NOT primary to these stories. They are designed to sexually arouse the reader and nothing else.

Erotica: stories written about the sexual journey of the characters and how this impacts them as individuals. Emotion and character growth are important facets of a true erotic story. However, erotica is NOT designed to show the development of a romantic relationship, although it’s not prohibited if the author chooses to explore romance. Happily Ever Afters are NOT an intrinsic part of erotica, though they can be included. If they are included, they weren't the focus. The focus remained on the individual characters’ journeys, not the progression of the romance.

Erotic Romance: stories written about the development of a romantic relationship through sexual interaction. The sex is an inherent part of the story, character growth, and relationship development, and couldn't be removed without damaging the storyline. Happily Ever After is a REQUIREMENT to be an erotic romance.

Source: nowwatchtvlive.com

I’d like to add that although a happy ending is a requirement in an erotic romance, there is no longer an emphasis on a “happy ever after”. A “happy for now”, where the characters attain their goal of finding true love and being together for now is enough. The age old tradition of marrying and remaining together forever is optional.

If you want to learn more about the difference between erotic romance and porn, feel free to leave me a comment or question. And don’t miss my session, Titillating Tales: Is it just about sex? at the SJWF on 1 September, when former porn star, Nikki Stern, and I will be discussing the issue in more detail:

Sex is simultaneously everywhere and taboo. While still hush-hush in some quarters, there is no shortage of material about sensuality and sexuality. Hear what two “nice Jewish women” have to say about their very different experiences in the industry – one as a former well-known porn star, the other as an author of erotic romance novels under the pen name Jess Dee. They talk to Toni Whitmont how sex can build relationships or destroy them.  

For more information about the festival, visit the SJWFsite.

And for more information about Jess Dee, visit my website or blog, or follow me on Facebook. 
(Warning: Jess' website is not intended for viewing by anyone under the age of 18!)

Another of Jess Dee's 25+ books

1 comment:

  1. Romance and porn are totally different! Some people should be an pen minded so that they will understand what's the difference on this. Girls with braces