She Fingered Her Pearls; Snark on Erotica
I really don't think this post needs to be long. It's about writing erotica, and how different people write erotica. And it's not always simple to do because there are words that can either make or break a scene...and in many cases this all depends on the context of the scene.
Yesterday I saw a published author I follow on Twitter making fun of a new self-published author's erotica, and the way this self-published author wrote a few scenes. The published author I follow on Twitter was taking direct quotes from the self-published author's book, tweeting them, and making a joke out of them for the sake of pure snark. In other words, the published author is an asshat in the first degree.
Although no names were mentioned, I thought it was interesting that one author would actually do this mean girl thing to another, so I went over to Amazon and checked out free samples of the published author who was making fun of the new self-published author. I was certain the published author's work would be absolutely perfect. After all, only the most perfect criticize others that way.
And sure enough, this is what I found on the first page in one of her books on Amazon:
"She fingered her pearls..."
This was not erotica, or an erotic scene.
That's not a sentence I would ever use in a book...or anywhere. I would have written, "She touched her pearls," and kept it simple. I'm not a huge fan of words that have some very exact meanings. And when I think of something being "fingered," my mind tends to wander in one naughty, amusing direction. And when a female character is fingering something, I zoom in on one particular part of the female anatomy.
My point is that anyone can take an erotic scene out of context and laugh at it. That's called putting the spin on it. But to take this a step even further, anyone can take any scene (or word within a scene) in any book and laugh at that as well if he or she spins it the right way.
Maybe this is an August thing, because I actually wrote a long post about this almost a year ago, here, after a group of bloggers decided to laugh at erotica. And I gave a few of my own detailed examples of how anyone can put the spin on non-erotic romance, too. The unfortunate thing is that most who write erotica are not in a position to fight back because it's such a discreet genre. So they let things like this go and the mean authors get away with whatever they want.
I've stopped following the published author who laughed at, and tweeted about, the new self-published author.