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The one thing I've been lamenting about hockey fandom is its lack of kink fic. There's a lot of casual kink - people enjoying being manhandled/held down/bitten - but not much of the more serious variety. Then along came [ profile] liketheroad with a complicated kindness. I'm sure you've heard me say before that my cardinal rule of sex scenes is that how they feel is more important than what they do, and this is increasingly true the more people in the scene or the kinkier it is. "a complicated kindness" hews true to that rule. She fades to black for half the sex scene, which works incredibly well because (a) the story is all about the feeling of the kink and (b) it's the kind of sex scene where you could easily get stuck on what they're doing and forget to show us how they feel. The whole story has exactly the fantastic kind of feeling I want from d/s fic. It does take place in high school, so if that's not your thing, you shouldn't read it. It also does exactly what I've been pondering when thinking about kink and hockey players being young and has them look things up on the internet.
Shaking still, he types in another link, but it doesn’t take him to more porn, which sucks a lot, but is probably helpful in terms of Patrick’s goal of not coming in his pants.

He tries to focus on the text in front of him, and after blinking at it stupidly for awhile Patrick realizes he’s reading some kind of a FAQ on bondage and sadomasochism. Patrick kind of wants to skip it and see if there’s more porn, but it was on Johnny’s list so that means he has to read it.

It seems pretty straightforward to Patrick. He never thought to lay things out like the website does, but he finds himself nodding a lot, feeling like he wants to fist-bump whoever wrote the responses. Like, who wouldn’t want to get tied up? Seems like a pretty fucking great idea. He imagines rope digging into his wrists and thinks he would still prefer Johnny’s hands, but if Johnny was the one watching him struggle against them, Patrick figures he could probably make do.

Same goes for getting hit, getting choked. It all sounds fucking awesome, if you ask Patrick, and really the only thing he doesn’t get is why anyone would want something different. Pain is - in hockey pain is how you know you’re doing good, how you know you’re working hard enough. It should burn a little. It should leave you gasping, emptied out, wanting more.

If hockey’s like that, and hockey is the best thing in the world, Patrick figures sex can’t be that much different. It might even be better, maybe, but he doesn’t really know. Mostly, all Patrick knows is that whatever he’s doing, he wants to be doing it with Johnny.
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Post in question.

1. I hate editing posts. My perspective is that once you've put something out there, it's out there and you're stuck with it. However, I have edited yesterday's post to add a disclaimer I probably should have put on it in the first place. To anyone else I hurt by talking at you without making it clear that I wasn't saying, "You should do things this way": I'm sorry. :-( I feel horrible about it, and I hope the disclaimer helps make it better.

2. I've had that post in my Google Docs for months and months and months where I occasionally poked at it without making any substantial changes before I finally said enough is enough and posted it. This morning, it occurred to me that I can sum up that whole middle section about sex in one sentence: The issue I've been struggling with is how to write feminist heterosexual sex scenes that include more variety than I usually see in either the mainstream culture or fandom. I know it seems like the other things in the post are more important, but this is the point I keep coming back to and worrying at when I'm writing het.
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Edit: The comments have made clear to me that I have done something I didn't want to and written a post that made people feel talked at. So this is a belated disclaimer: This post is about what I think about when I'm writing and what I think about this particular discussion in fandom. This is not a prescription for what you should do. I do believe the fandom as escapism approach is absolutely valid and useful, and I also go through periods of wanting just stories and no meta in between periods of wanting to tell you everything I think about meta topics. /edit

A very long while ago, [ profile] inlovewithnight linked to a very interesting post about the question Why am I not writing the stories I say I want to read? In case you don't want to read the post, the question is specifically around the issue of saying we want more fic about women and poc characters but continuing to write slash about white men. ([personal profile] happydork phrases this entirely about her, but I'm using "we" deliberately because I think it extends beyond just her.)

For me, the one of her reasons that I'm actively changing in my own writing is the "habits of mind." She says, "There are comfortable ruts in my mind that any story I write can happily rest on. It takes me a long, long time to change these, and a lot of thought, insight and effort." But we can change them, and even if it takes a long time, you have to start somewhere. I've specifically, consciously been doing this around writing about women and gender roles. I'm sure I'm not always successful, but I have been making the effort. I specifically tried to avoid anything that referenced roles that were determined by gender in Fighting For (although I reread it somewhat recently and realized I missed one that needed to come out). I made an effort to make You Have My Heart (In Your Hands) pass the Bechdel test. When I edited A Great Idea to fix the sex scene, I also took out Andi's references to being "girly" as something she didn't want to be/like being.

Part of my resistance to editing my Gabe/Victoria accidental marriage story is that it's at least 40% about how Gabe doesn't sleep and Victoria gets him to - and I don't like the idea that a woman's role is to be in service to men. I've had people tell me that every relationship has its give and take, that if you have trouble sleeping it's easier with someone else in bed with you, and that one plot point is not necessarily a patriarchy-upholding pattern. And yet, I'm still uncomfortable with it. It may just be one plot point, but it's one plot point in the context of a society that tells us in a million other ways that women are supposed to serve men.

This got a little long, plus this part talks about sex and sex writing. )

There's one more point in this discussion where you might have figured out what I think but I'd like to say it explicitly. In a comment on [ profile] inlovewithnight's post, [ profile] mosca said:
I think there's an additional wrinkle here, which is that there's so much "We have to write more women and people of color!" talk, that when one actually writes about a woman or a person of color (especially the latter), it's often seen as a political move rather than an actual expression of fannish affection for that character.
There's an implication in [ profile] mosca's comment - and particularly in the fannish response it describes - that writing about a woman or a person of color as a political move is a bad thing. I don't think it is. Fandom isn't going to change unless we - the people who make up fandom - make that change happen. One way to make that change happen is to choose to tell stories based on the political change we want to make in combination with what interests us.
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Today I'm thankful for [ profile] airgiodslv's Stripper Music playlist. I was not in the frame of mind to work on my novel, and then I switched to this and wrote three hundred words in no time. Most of the sex scenes in the first novel would not exist if it weren't for this playlist.
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I was reading kink where the sub was kneeling with his hands behind his back and had to stand up, and his dom helped him. I've probably read similar things before, but this time it struck me: how hard is that, really? I took/have taken (I haven't decided yet if this is just a temporary break or if it's really time for me to move on) belly dance for almost five years, which means I can stand up from sitting or kneeling without using my hands while balancing a sword on my head, but I don't know how easy/hard that is for other people. So really, a two part question:

(a) How hard is it to stand up from kneeling without using your hands? (There's no need to guess on this; you can always kneel, clasp your hands behind your back, and try to stand up. Anonymous commenting is on if you don't want to admit to having tried this. I did try it, and it was easy for me.)

(b) Would being in subspace make it harder?
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I have a lot of confidence in my writing ability. I think even my ability to write physical descriptions (something fan fic doesn't teach you) has improved to an acceptable level. But there's still one area where I don't feel confident: kink.

I'd say this is because kink isn't something I have any experience with, but I've written all kinds of sex, relationships, and other situations that I don't have any experience with.

I don't know why kink is such a challenge for me. Somehow in my head I don't want to get it wrong. (And reading the comments on really good kink always makes me feel even more nervous about it. Try it sometime; you'll be amazed by how many people come out of the woodwork to say, "So many people get [some aspect of kink] wrong, but you didn't.")

I think I'm thinking about this now because I'm getting to the end of my novel and my plan for the next one is for it to be about a bdsm relationship. But even if I skip that and start in on my five-book series idea, I'm just postponing it because that series has one bdsm relationship and some other kinks as well.

I'm also thinking about it because I have two d/s stories in progress - one girl!Gabe/Victoria and one Mike/William - and every time I scan through them it hits me how little actual kink I've managed to write so far. I said to friends about the Mike/William story, "I don't care as much about the sex as I do about, say, Bill tying Mike up while Evie's at school." I've written about a thousand words of the aftermath of Bill tying Mike up, but the actual scene itself mostly has a lot of white space around a note to self and people reading the Google Doc that says only, "[rope]." The girl!Gabe/Victoria story doesn't even have anything approaching a complete sex scene, although there's the beginning of one where I know how it ends, so maybe I just need to write my way toward the middle - much like I'm doing with the story itself.

How do you write good kink? How do you know it's good when you're writing it? I will also take any other sorts of encouragement or advice on the matter, or interesting resources/blogs about kink or kink writing.
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Come join [ profile] romoerotic! So far there's an unrec from [ profile] schuyler and a things I would've made you fix in editing post from me. I, for one, have several other books to post about once I get around to writing about them, and I would love to see what you all have to say about other novels.
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This contains spoilers for "You Have My Heart (in your hands)," so if you have any interest in the story itself, you should read it before you read this.

Story Origins )

Women's Lives )

Real People, Fake Names )

Sex Lives of Fictional Characters )

The Hard Part )

Didn't Make It Into the Story )

My Favorite Source )

Things I Did That I Might Not Have Noticed

I love it when other people pick up things I didn't know I was doing. What did you notice in "You Have My Heart (in your hands)" that I didn't mention?
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I don't know how interesting other people's writing processes actually are if you're not them, so this might be one of those entries that's less for you to read and more for me to write. This does contain lots of spoilers for "Fighting For," so if you have any interest in the story, you should go read it before you read this. If you're not interested in the story, but are interested in the intersection of sci fi and feminist thought, you might still find the section on gender politics interesting.

Writing Without a Plot: Origins and Story Arc )

Sex Scenes That Don't Obey )

Gender Politics )

Credit Where Credit Is Due: Influences )

Things I Did That You Might Not Have Noticed )

Things I Did That I Might Not Have Noticed

One of the things I love about having other people read something I wrote is when they notice things I didn't even know I was doing. If you read "Fighting For," I'd love to know what you noticed in it that I didn't know I was doing.
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I'm writing a Chris/Steve space AU, and I made a character decision about Chris. It made sense that if space AU Chris likes heat, enclosed spaces, and higher gravity, then he would like being held down. And then I've continued that character piece farther into the story. I even changed the casting of one of the other characters to go with it.

A long time ago, there was thread on some X-Files fic list or newsgroup (I wasn't kidding when I said it was a long time ago) called "No Mary Sues for Alex?" which tackled the relative dearth of Krycek/Mary Sue fic. I remember the conclusion being that people tended to just make Krycek their Mary Sue. I've been thinking about that as I've been working my way through this space AU.

(This is an interesting intersection with my continuing doubts about writing Chris. I don't think my Chris is anything like real Chris. [I think there's only one or two authors writing a Chris who's anything like real Chris.] On the other hand, I have to listen to real Chris with the aural equivalent of peeking through my fingers, so I'm not sure I would want to read real Chris.)

I've also been thinking of my favorite quote about writing about sex. It's from Tony Kushner, who says, "It is impossible to talk or write about sex without revealing too much of yourself. Whereas conversely it is possible I think to have sex and reveal nothing of yourself whatsoever."

I had an interesting experience with this. [ profile] norwich36 and I exchange fic recs all the time. A lot of them are things with interesting plots or that are amusing, but a fair number of them are about things that are hot. We also had a relatively involved discussion about BDSMy stories way back on my post about the first J2 stories I read. She's also read some of my fic. I give you all this background so you know that we already talk about this kind of thing all the time. Then we started talking erotica ebooks over email, and I wrote a long email to her about the ebooks I've read. I was reading it over before I sent it, and I thought, "It's a good thing she knows me pretty well already, because this is pretty revealing." It was almost uncomfortably revealing. I think there are two things that made it so uncomfortable. First of all, ebooks take more of an investment than fic. They cost money, and you're stuck with them, so you have to choose carefully. Secondly, it was startling to look at the list all at once and see the pattern, especially in the things I bought myself (as opposed to the things I got from other people). Almost all the things I really liked, and a large number of the things I bought were BDSM or BDSMy. And yet, I've written a fair amount about kink, so I'm not sure why this particular email made me feel quite so exposed.

A Confession

Oh, no, wait, maybe I do at least know why I keep thinking/talking about this now. It's been weeks since I last wrote anything on either of the novels I'm supposed to be writing because I quit my job to be a writer. I've only admitted that to maybe two other people. If I tell the truth about my penchant for kink fic, does that balance out my not-telling about my writing?
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I keep meaning to write something about the movies I've seen so far this year (Children of Men, Smokin' Aces, The Queen [which may yet get its own entry about how the Royals were my first fandom], Pan's Labyrinth, and Breach), the awesome concert I went to (The Chieftains; you should also go if their tour is coming anywhere near you), and the completely frivolous book I totally want (The Science of Sexy by Bradley Bayou), but I don't think I'm going to get to it. Instead, I bring you the important parts of my Escapade 2007 experience.

Flavor Flav is much shorter in person
Flavor Flav was on the same plane from Sacramento to Burbank as [ profile] amatia and me. As the section heading says, he's much shorter in person. He also actually wears the clock. It looks like one of those plastic kitchen clocks you can buy at Target for two dollars, and it's hanging from a gold chain amongst other bling. I have no idea what he was doing in Sacramento.

Non-famous people we encountered
When we went out for milkshakes on Sunday afternoon, we went to a small coffee shop which was mostly empty. The only people in there were the barista and a guy with his dog at one of the tables. Molly immediately chatted up the dog. I had this whole thing in my head about how the guy and the barista were in love and he was just hanging out with her while she was at work. And then she asked him for a dollar so she could make the tip jar an even 20, and he said something about having to tip his girlfriend. It was very cute.

Fangirl or Scientist? You decide.
Like last year, there was a science conference ending as we arrived at the hotel. Fangirl or Scientist is a pretty easy game to play. There were only two people we saw who could be either. We also easily spotted [ profile] norwich36 and [ profile] paraviondeux in the airport, and not just because they were near the rental car counters where we had agreed to meet.

Hot Girl's identity revealed (but not to you)
You may remember from last year's con report that we were trying to identify a woman we referred to only as Hot Girl. This year, we discovered who Hot Girl is. And, no, I'm not going to tell you. (She seemed vaguely alarmed when I felt compelled to confess that we'd referred to her as Hot Girl.)

I will, however, tell you two more things:

1. I sent Molly an email last year speculating that [Hot Girl's LJ username] might be Hot Girl, which goes to show you that my instincts are good.

2. We had talked early in the weekend with other slashers about how we wanted to find out who Hot Girl was. Later in the weekend, we had this discussion with one of them:

Other Slasher: [Hot Girl's name] is the hot girl you were talking about, right?
Us: Yes.
Other Slasher: I knew exactly who you were talking about. I just didn't know her name.

Yes, I attended panels. More than I expected, actually.

Panels I led
The femslash panel gets its own post with transcribed flip chart notes.

But You're A Slash Fan! started out with a large number of people raising their hands in answer to "Who likes SGA but just can't see the McShep?" We had a little bit of interesting discussion about whether or not it's socially acceptable in fannish circles to be a slash fan and a het fan. And then it somehow devolved into a discussion of newspaper content in the 19th century. I then suggested that slashers are the Basques in Spain while het fans are the Basques in France. I'm not sure that made sense to everyone.

Panels I attended
Quest for *Guh* - Writing Powerful Sex Scenes was worth attending. It almost hit my limit for amount of time to sit still and listen, but it was good, despite the fact that one of the attendees had a tendency to dominate the discussion and two others were a bit overheated. The handout is great, and available online. There was something Aristide/Mairead said that was particularly good, and now I can't remember what it was. Perhaps I should have taken more useful notes over the weekend.

Is It A Crowd - Or An Orgy? was about how the ensemble show has replaced the buddy show as a staple of TV. Someone mentioned Martin/Danny (Without a Trace), and I said, "," and people just laughed at me. Hmpf! I also tried to bring up comedies, and no one wanted to talk about that. What was most interesting to me was what we didn't talk about: Why ensemble shows have replaced the buddy show. I think there's something there about how ensemble shows are a way to put women on TV without alienating audiences who want (or who content producers/marketers think want) to watch men on TV. The other most interesting thing was the woman across the room with the drop spindle; I could not stop watching her. (I think we stayed all the way through this one, but it's possible that it actually belongs on the list below.)

I'd never been to [ profile] minotaurs' Sex Tips for Slash Writers panel, so this year I went. (I liked it that they put both sex panels on the same day.) Apparently the prostate feels like the tip of your nose. I found the whole panel highly entertaining and informative.

Panels I started to attend
As you may remember from years past, Molly and I have a habit of ducking out of panels that take a sour turn.

I really liked the idea of Cops, Spies, and Secret Agents. The reality, not so much. One of the moderators was disorganized, and the other one admitted straight up that they'd suggested this panel as a way to shoehorn a Pros panel into the schedule in case the actual Pros panel didn't make it. I'd never seen most of the things they brought up as examples, so I left early.

We went to the Mystical Bonds panel, but then it wasn't as interesting as advertised, so we left.

We intended to go to the Fueling The Fires of Genderfuckery panel, but we were hungry and based on the panel leader and the people gathering, it looked like it was likely to be all HP, so we went to lunch instead.

We also intended to go to Writing Race and Alien Characters, but it didn't sound very interesting at the beginning and I was restless, so we went to have milkshakes instead.

The Party and other social things
Many people we're usually excited to see weren't there this year ([ profile] j_crew_guy and [ profile] elekdragon, [ profile] dine and [ profile] sorchar, [ profile] meaganola, [ profile] mousewrites). I also noticed that there weren't as many men there this year, and [ profile] typhoidk observed that there weren't as many folks who aren't white.

All was not lost, however. We spent some quality time hanging out with [ profile] hederahelix and crew ([ profile] typhoidk, [ profile] reccea, and [ profile] kuwsi_dilla), and even stuck out way more of the party than we usually do (primarily because we were at a table with those folks). I also met another slasher from my town, so we're talking about starting up some kind of fannish gathering here.

We went to He-He after we left the party, and stuck out two rounds before I reached my limit of spending time with other people. That was, however, the only time the whole weekend that I was fed up with other people. Molly and I decided that having only the two of us in our room worked really well.

Mal and other acquisitions
In addition to the aforementioned milkshakes, we had a lot of good food. In fact, the only bad food we ate all weekend was in airports. If you're ever in Ventura, I highly recommend Full of Beans (coffee shop with excellent muffins and yummy milkshakes), Cafe Bariloche (South American food), and Nature's Grill (healthy and yummy, with excellent smoothies).

For the past couple of years, the con has given away 4x6 photos with the name badges. This year, I got someone I didn't recognize (from Supernatural, I think). Because I didn't even know who it was, I was willing to trade for just about anything. Someone wandered by and traded me for Rodney (from SGA). I was then able to trade Rodney to Molly for the Mal picture she got.

I then bought way more Mal in the dealers room: a Serenity crew photo (8x10), a Firefly cast as themselves photo (8x10), a different Firefly cast as themselves photo (8x10), a racier variation on one of the Firefly cast as themselves photos (4x6), a hot Mal photo (4x6), a photo of Mal and Jayne with guns (4x6) (I'm not a Mal/Jayne person at all, which is a subject for another day, but it's a great photo) (4x6), and a Serenity postcard that's the movie logo. The 8x10s are going over my bed (possibly with green matting or frames) and the postcard is going in my office at work (in an orangish wood frame). I put the hot Mal 4x6 and the Mal and Jayne 4x6 on the fridge, but I have no idea what to do with the other 4x6s.

Molly's friend Kellie Lynch (like the namedropping?) was in the dealers room with a booth for her company, Iris Print (possibly not work safe). Molly gave me A Strong and Sudden Thaw for Christmas, and I loved it, and I told Amazon that, so Amazon started reccing me the other Iris Print titles. I'd been thinking about buying Connections, but I wanted to look at it first. This gave me the perfect opportunity, and the book was my only non-Mal dealers' room purchase.

We pulled two items for Sky off the swap table, and they'll be in the mail soon (since I didn't do it this morning). I also got two items from the swap table for myself: a hugely long King Arthur promo poster I want to put over my bookshelves (preferably in a red frame, but I'm never going to find something the right size [21x50]), and a tape labeled "Twitch City #1."

Torchwood is apparently the hot new fandom, and Life on Mars also had some buzz. There was also lots of talk all weekend about SGA and Supernatural, and BSG amongst the people I was hanging out with. I spent a large portion of the weekend and at least half of the two panels I led having no idea what people were talking about. I'd never even heard of Torchwood or Life on Mars before they started showing up in proposed panel descriptions, and I've never seen SGA, BSG, or Supernatural. I kept looking at pictures in the dealers room and saying, "I don't know who this is." I did manage to pick up that the guys in Supernatural are Sam and Dean, that one of the actors is named Jenson Ackles (And it's entirely possible that someone will appear to tell me I've gotten the name wrong. I could look it up, but that feels like cheating in this context.), and that one of the actors is very, very tall while the other is not.

Yay new friends!
I've gone on a post-Escapade friending spree (when you friend one person at a time after months of contemplation, four people counts as a spree), never mind the fact that half the people I friended didn't even go to Escapade and half of those half wouldn't be interested in Escapade and may, in fact, mock me for attending.

That's all folks!
At this point, I don't think I'm going back to Escapade next year. Admittedly, I did have a lot of fun: I got to spend a whole week with Molly, had some fun times with the people mentioned in the social life section above, got to be my fannish self unrestricted and unmocked, attended some good panels, and acquired fannish items. Having said that, I don't think Escapade is my crowd anymore. A lot of the people I would usually hang out with weren't there, I was put off by how late and disorganized the panel scheduling was, there's something of a "you kids and your internet" feel about the con, I'm not particularly fannish about anything specific these days, and I sometimes *gasp* actually like the canon het relationships on a show.

I am planning to go to BASCon this year since I rolled over my membership last year (or at least I sent them a letter saying I wanted to; no one ever sent me a confirmation), and Molly and I are seriously thinking about going to WisCon in May, so you may yet see me at a con. And, of course, if you're the fannish sort and you're in the Chico area, I'm always happy for some fannish fun. (I got horrified looks and possibly some sympathy when I explained to a table full of fangirls that the only friends I actually spend time with on a regular basis are not just men, but straight men.)

Femslash recs are in the femslash panel post.

I love The Class, and I kept trying to rec it to people, without much success. I really like the het relationships. There's a canonically gay character who hangs out with one of the straight men, especially when his partner's out of town. Palmer (played by Jaime King) hits on one of the other women. It's completely compelling, and one of my can't miss shows. (I also started watching partway through the season, so you don't have to watch from the beginning to get it.)

I also recced Keri Arthur's Riley Jenson novels to, uh, someone. I used to not like werewolf or vampire novels, but now I read a lot more of them, and I really like this series. (I finished the book I was reading [Princess Academy] this morning and promptly went to Barnes and Noble for Tempting Evil, which came out this week.) I think the reason I was reccing them is that there's a whole lot of really hot sex. The downside to this is that I can't take the books to work. But I don't really mind reading a whole book over the weekend.

I again recced moonwhip's "Childish Things," a lovely Mal/Kaylee story. I think I only mentioned it to Molly.

Things I forgot
I'm sure there are some (even with all the things I've remembered to include over the last five days that I've been working on this), but as I've forgotten them, I don't know what they are. I do know Molly and I had a discussion about something (possibly a Vin Diesel movie) and she said there might be some at Yuletide. Not knowing what it was, I can't really go looking for it.

And now that I've posted this, I can meet the boys for lunch, and then go read other people's con reports.
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I only care when it's about me.
I've been skimming every con report in Elke's list. I went to any panel I was really interested in, so I fully admit that I really just page down until I find something that's about a panel I led or was in.

The quality of writing.
It occurred to me on my way home from work last week that Jay/Silent Bob fic is remarkably mediocre. I don't think I've read anything Jay/Silent Bob that was too horribly bad, but I also haven't read anything that was fantastically brilliant.

Why I like ritualized violence in a sex scene.
Charlotte brought up humiliation at the end of the panel; earlier someone mentioned betrayal. Both of those things will make a scene really unsexy for me, and I figured out how to articulate that. I'm something of a control freak with some trust issues. The idea of someone trusting another person enough to willingly giving up control of their body to that person is what's really hot in BDSM fic.

Making new friends.
In the beta panel, one of the suggestions for finding a beta was to start by talking to writers whose work you admire. Brenda Antrim said that people always tell her they're afraid to talk to her.

As you probably know from my history of fannish troublemaking, I'm not particularly afraid of people. What I am wary of, however, is the trend I've noticed. Generally speaking, I don't like the authors whose fic I like. Conversely, I have liked people whose fic I don't like.

My point here is that I have trouble finding people I like whose writing I also like. This means making fannish friends is difficult for me.

Slash fandom as gendered space.
In his con report, [ profile] elekdragon said, "I just don't pass well, and having people who are VERY gendered staring at you makes things uncomfortable." I've been mulling this about. I don't know that I have a point, but I have been thinking about slash as gendered space. My first instinct is to say that one of the things I like about slash fandom is that it is a community of women. On the other hand, one of the things I don't like about slash fandom is the way we're increasingly exclusionary. (I mean this in a larger sense. I may stay in my own little corner and take a really long time to make new friends, but I'd like to think that I'm not going to immediately dismiss anyone new just because they're not already part of the group. Without knowing anything much about it--I stay away from fandom wank and my friends list is fairly small--the sense I get is that slash fandom at large is rejecting new folks just for being new.)

Terminology issues.
In the sex writing panel, someone brought up the fact that "dick" is rather uncommon in the UK, and someone else said it's very common in some branch of the US armed forces. I realized use "cock" and "cunt" because they're what I like, not necessarily what the character would use. I have some sense of what's appropriate for female anatomy for varying types of characters, but no idea about male anatomy. So here's my question for anyone who (a) is male or (b) knows men who've shared such things with them: What do men say? Dick? Cock? Prick? Man-meat? Something I haven't thought of?
rsadelle: (Default)
If you've looked at my webpage and read the FAQ, you would know that I identify myself as a slash writer. That becomes more and more of a misnomer as time goes on. You see, I really like writing heterosexual sex. Not only is this weird because I used to be a slash writer, but it's also weird because I'm not heterosexual.

I think part of my current obsession with het is due to the fact that I'm trying to reassure myself that it is possible for there to be a feminist way of writing heterosexual sex.

In November, I went to hear women read from Gynomite: Fearless, Feminist Porn. I was horribly disappointed because although it was undoubtedly fearless porn, it was not feminist. It was the same old porn, although some of it was rather clever, written by women. Just because something is done or written by women doesn't mean it's feminist.

With much of the het I write, I keep that in mind. I consciously attempt not to fall into the same old ways of treating women's sexuality that appear in porn and romance novels. However, a few days ago, Nette and I wrote Jason Newsted/Britney Spears in chat. That in itself is nothing too remarkable, but it ended up being very porn-like. Now, part of the point was to underscore the power dynamics involved in an older man/much younger woman relationship, but the way we described her, and the way Jason talks to her, in the story makes me a little uncomfortable. It ended up being sleazy and dirty, which are fun, but it also seems to play into the usual "big, strong, virile man takes small, slutty, willing woman" dynamic. On the other hand, we did talk about her clit, but I'm not sure that's enough to make it even semi-feminist.

I think I'd feel more comfortable if I could articulate what makes a piece of smut feminist. As it is, I'm just stumbling through on instinct. I won't let my characters do anything I don't feel comfortable with them doing. I try to make the women assertive, desiring as well as desired, sex subjects as well as sex objects. Until I can work out a better system, that's the only way I know of to write anything even approaching feminist smut.


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Ruth Sadelle Alderson


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