Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I write about the paranormal, not porn

I was reading something recently, and was very offended at the language. (I won't mention names, so as not to offend the author or hurt anyone's feelings.) Now, I'm pretty open minded and I'm certainly no saint, but this language was foul. If there is dialogue in a porn movie, this is the kind you would expect. The book was marketed as a romance.


To me repeated use of the word "cock" is not romantic, nor is it erotic. It's not even creative, it's just plain dirty. I can understand saying something like this once in a while, but at least switch it up.


Sure, I like sex, and I write plenty of it. However, I don't believe there should be graphic language just thrown in for giggles here and there. I write like I speak and even though I do cuss, I'm not going to walk up to someone and use the word "pussy" on a regular basis. LOL


By the time I reached page 37, which is where I stopped reading, the "p" word had been used at least 50 times. There was also a gratuitous masturbation scene (pg. 33) that I really could have done without.


Don't get me wrong, I'm definitely not a prude. Anyone who really knows me knows that. This was just way over the top. What about you guys? Do you like graphic language to be prevalent in a book?

11 comments:

chez maddy said...

I agree with you! I like love scenes mroe than sex scenes, if you know what I mean, and although I don't really like weird and silly euphemisms for genitalia, I find some words crude and over used. using the same description is just plain boring at best and downright offputting at worst.

Kathy said...

I agree with both you and chez maddy. I don't like to read sex scenes with overly graphic, repeating work.Just to have sex for sex sake is dumb. I am so not a prude, but what I look for is a sex within a good love story. If I wanted graphic I'd buy porn...lol

Amy Gallow said...

To a writer, words exist only to allow the reader to experience the story. To the degree they achieve this, they are appropriate. I can imagine a character who would use gutter language in speech and in thought. The words could therefore replace the normal attributions of "X said" or "Y thought". Other than this example, there are situations where such language is appropriate to achieve a deliberate effect, or shock value.
Using it in place of more effective words is intellectual laziness and short-changes the reader who has paid good money to read the book.
In nine published books, I have yet to find adequate reason to use them.

Tracey H. Kitts said...

It would seem we are all in agreement. I was just sharing in the NCP reader group that I enjoy writing about sex, when it pertains to the story and character development.

But to me, and this is just my opinion, repeated use of coarse language is a distraction rather than a turn on.

Thanks for coming by, and thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Tracey

Meagan Hatfield said...

I cannot stand it when an author throws in some explicit words and thinks, voila - it's erotica now! WRONG! Unfortunately, a lot of authors do this. Most of the time it jars me because the words are so out of place with the characters - you can tell the author isn't comfortable using them and it therefore makes me uncomfortable.

Then again, there are a few authors who use the same language, do it beautifully and I don't even notice.

It all comes down to the story and the characters - if it's something they would say and do, and it's in the correct context then it's no problem. Gratuitous anything is always horrible.

Tracey H. Kitts said...

That's what I'm afraid happened with this story. The shame of it is, if they could have left out some of the language, it had a potentially great plot. The author was obviously very intelligent and had extensive knowledge of myths and legends.

I've also read authors who are comfortable writing graphic scenes and using a variety of language and it was HOT. This was just so out of place.

Here is an example, without using the exact text or revealing the book.

In paragraph one on page 35 we have two sentences and then the phrase, "his cock hardened." We then have one more sentence and the repeated phrase.

(I'm actually counting this right now.)We have three more sentences and the same phrase with the use of the word pussy twice as well as the "f" word three times.

Next paragraph, "his cock hardened just looking at her." LOL Ok, if this has been going on for more than four hours, he might need to call his doctor now. ILMAO

It continues like this for three pages before he has a very unemotional and unnecessary sex scene with a woman who hates him, though it isn't exactly rape. I quit reading here.

Tonni said...

For me personally I can take it either way. I'm an avid and also a reviewer. What I don't like about the graphic language if it's not use right. That's way you have books out there for people who don't like to read graphic language ex. Harlequin Blaze and their Spice line. I have question for your writers, how can you call some of your books erotic and/or erotica if you don't use the right language?

ksurbeck said...

As an author and as a reader, I want wording, context, emotion, and setting to be story appropriate. If the character would use those words, I have no issue with them.

angeleque said...

It all depends on the plot, story and characters.

I don't have a problem with it from a writer or reader point of view. Now having repetitious words and phrases is sometimes disconcerting to me and pulls me out of the story but that's just a pet peeve of mine and has nothing to do with the graphic or explicit language or sex scenes.

I don't write a lot of timid female characters. They tend to be bold and assertive and speak their mind and use foul or explicit language.

One characer would say "f%cked in an elevator" as opposed to "having sex/making love in a elevator" but it's appropriate for her.

Just like a character of mine (Differnt character) would say "Just because he has a big dick doesn't mean he knows how to use it" or she may "talk dirty" in bed because that is what she and the hero likes. But again it's appropriate for her and story.

So it all depends on the execution for me, I have no problem with graphic language or explicit sex scenes.

And for me, that's different than a gratuitous sex scene thrown in to raise the sex quota.

And Tonni - to me a book doesn't have to be graphically or explicitly described in vulgar terms to be erotic or erotica. For me - a book is erotic/erotica when the sex is essential to the plot and can't be taken out or ignored and the book still be understood. The sex scenes has to move the plot forward and develop the characters just like the other scenes do.

Tracey H. Kitts said...

Brilliantly stated, Angeleque, I feel the same way on the erotic/erotica topic.

One of the characters in a story of mine uses the phrase, “But how much fun is an eight inch dick with no brain attached to it?”

So, I'm definitely ok with the language, just when it fits the story and the character.

Tracey H. Kitts said...

In my sleep deprived state late last night while drafting an earlier response, I miscounted. Not that it matters that much, but the use of the "p" word in the scene I referenced begins on page 35, the f-word begins on 36 and is prevalent throughout the scene, as it is throughout the book.

His cock doesn't actually start to "harden" until page 37, it only swells on page 35. LOL

Sorry, OCD and my sick sense of humor wouldn't leave me alone about that one. My bad. I'll shut up now.