SMUT 101 w/ Cam

August 5, 2017 Camila's Thoughts 5

“Sex, baby, let’s talk about you and me, let’s talk about all the GOOD things and the BAD things that may be. Let’s talk about Sex.”

Alright you guys, I don’t like to brag but I consider myself a smut connoisseur of sorts.  Sex is just about everywhere in the media but today we’re gonna talk about sex in books; YA and New Adult and Romance in particular.

Let’s start with a simple question.  When did you first learn about sex?

My answer is fanfiction.  Later on my mom gave me an extensive lesson with picture books and a list What Not To Do; I was eight years old.  Now that may seem a little young to most but I am forever grateful for my unconventional mother for teaching me these basics because something I have noticed is that A LOT of people, and some writers, have N0 idea how sex even works.

This whole discussion has come from a rather hilarious thread I wrote not too long ago about how I preferred books written by  queer authors and/or authors of color because of their accuracy and realness when it comes to writing a good sex scene. 

I’ll probably divide this into different and separate posts because I have lots to talk about.

I know we all want to be wooed off our feet with paragraphs describing mountain-shaking sex and being set (literally) on fire but I’m gonna have to break it to you guys.  That ain’t how it works, at least not in this dimension.  Just a tiny bit of shade to start my rant, nothing to cry about.

First off, what is crucial, at least to me, when writing a good Romance that will eventually include sexual intercourse ew, hate that phrase.

1. SEX POSITIVITY

Alright ladies and gents and fellow enbies, I think I can speak for all of us when I say we’re all sick and tired of any sort of slut-shaming may it be from the protagonist herself or the hero.  Also, shaming people for NOT wanting to have sex is rather insulting and played out; move on, authors.  Some people just don’t feel sexual attraction and that’s totally okay! They’re not broken or weird or robots; they just are the way they are.  Human beings with huge hearts.

In order for me to enjoy a good book with a piping hot romance, I need to see on text sex positivity.  I need to know this dude isn’t some egotistical jerk who thinks his magic dick is the only one who is allowed to grace the flowery entrance of his possible lover.  Blushing virgins who tear other women apart are also the bane of my existence.  Instead of focusing on other’s people’s sex lives that DO NOT involve you in any way shape or form, go ahead and take some pointers!  People who are open about talking abut sex are wonderful and give the best advice yet.  Drop your Cosmopolitans and listen to real women and men and enbies who’ve engaged in sex! It’s that simple!

People who own their sexuality are attractive, period.  I’d like to see more of this instead of that toxic shaming that usually goes on in books.

Something else I’d like to see more in YA mostly is masturbation as the norm.  Teenagers masturbate, its not a secret.  But when it comes to female masturbation we suddenly clam up and turn our heads away as if it weren’t sanitary or goddamn normal behavior.  Masturbation should become a topic discussed in YA just so kids stop feeling so ashamed of their bodies and their desires all the time.  Self-love isn’t a bad message to send out and we as part of a community created for the uplifting of teens and their voices should work hard to erase the stigma surrounding masturbation.  Let that sink in future and current authors.

2. GIVE US THE TRUTH, NOT EVERYONE IS A PORN STAR

Sometimes I find myself reading sex scenes in which the MC’s never sweat, the aftercare just magically happens afterwards and they DON’T SHOWER AFTERWARDS OR PEE OR EAT OR ANYTHING.  This sounds so whiny from my part but if you want us to feel like it’s real, you’ve got to show us the messiness of sex as well.  There are plenty of bodily fluids; not just sweat.  There’s saliva, there might be blood if the scene features period sex (IT’S THING STOP CRINGING).  Sex isn’t necessarily pretty!  Not everyone is perfectly shaved and oiled up when a one-night stand drops in unexpectedly.

People fumble with their clothes, they trip over things and fall out of things as well.  Seeing that in writing is more refreshing than authors think.  People get snacks after sex and they should hydrate themselves too that was some rigorous exercise going on.  Couples laugh and talk during sex, they even make jokes when nervous and/or comfortable with their partner.  It’d be nicer to see that kind of interaction that just plain rutting for pages and pages.

AND PLEASE, FOR THE SAFETY OF THE PEOPLE READING YOUR BOOKS, make your MCs pee afterwards.  That’s exactly how you get a UTI (Urinary Tract infection).  Not seeing these things may make your readers think they’re the ones doing something wrong because the sex isn’t the magical love-making you describe in your novels.

I’m not a huge fan of incredibly poetic, verging on purple prose sex scenes.  Not using the proper vocabulary to describe genitals is confusing and hard to picture for me plus it makes me want to laugh at how ridiculous it sounds.  “Rosebuds”, “Sweet Nectar”, “Velvet Steel”, “Meat Stick”, etc.  Don’t get too into that thesaurus, it’s a phallus, a dick; it’s a vagina with a vulva and a labia and a clitoris.  Just use the correct words and we’ll get the picture.

Please stop writing scenes without foreplay.  Foreplay is KEY for a good sexual experience.  You cannot just shove things in and expect everything to feel amazing because HONEY that is not how things work.  Whenever I read scenes like these I cringe and just feel bad for the poor person because there is no way penetration without some kind of preparation feels good.  Lube isn’t only for m/m sex and anal, lube is KEY in p and v sex as well.  Sometimes when I’m reading scenes and the woman is always instantaneously wet or “gushing like a fountain” I get so…confused.  Maybe there’s something wrong with my lady parts but it takes time for arousal to manifest in women.

Add some oral sex in there too for good measure; not just blow jobs but also good ol’ cunnilingus.  Not every smut scene you write has to include penetrative sex, trust me.  Its also very possible that the woman won’t come from penetrative sex alone! It’s actually pretty rare! Google it.  Also, sex toys!  It is time to break the taboo on sex toys and embrace them for a more fun and healthy sex life.  I mean this literally as in written in books and literally as in real life.

I hate that I have to explain this thing about condoms but here goes.  IF THERE IS A BLOWJOB SCENE AND THE MC DOES NOT USE A CONDOM DURING THE BJ, USING IT DURING PENETRATIVE SEX IS COUNTERPRODUCTIVE.  You can get STDs orally as well.  Syphilis, Gonorrhea, Chlamydia; all can be contracted orally.  So to “wrap things up”, wrap it up.

Now let’s talk about queer sex.  White allocishet women just love writing M/M novels without doing their research when it comes to male on male sex.  There’s little use of lube or condoms, spit is apparently a magical super lube great enough to make the sex pleasurable when YOU KNOW IT’S NOT BECAUSE THERE IS NO LUBE AND THAT MEANS EVERYTHING IS DRY AND THERE WILL BE PAIN AND PROBABLY BLOOD.  Sexy, right?  When writing your much loved m/m sex scenes please make your MCs use lube and condoms.  Condoms aren’t only for pregnancy scares ladies, they’re for preventing STDs and all of those lovely little monsters.

I want to expand and do more research before I write my thoughts on queer sex in lit so I’m gonna be stopping this rather abruptly!

Do any of you have any questions you’d like for me to answer? Are rants like these okay or is less more for you guys? Comment below!

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Camila (better known as Cam) is a 20 year old student/waitress who reads reads as a way of coping with the stress and complexities of life. She's also a huge diversity advocate and likes to partake in a fair share of social activism so expect tons of rants. Wow, it feels talking about myself in third person. Anyway! you can find me in all of my other social media linked down below. Feel free to message me if you have any doubts or just want to chat!