If you haven’t seen it, Karley Sciortino, the writer of the Slutever blog and a regular for Vogue magazine, has a Vice TV video documentary series (also called Slutever). In December I went to NYC for an erotica reading they were filming that fit this week’s episode’s theme, Women and Monsters.
Check out this preview featuring me, Laura Antoniou, Lori Perkins, and a couple other folks who were at the reading! “Women Who Love Monsters” was the reading theme, and by the end of the evening, Lori, who is director of Riverdale Avenue Books, had decided to put out a call for an anthology. That book is launching this week as well, to coincide with the ViceTV air date. I have a brand new story in it–the one I wrote for the reading specifically to coincide with the theme.
Interestingly enough, while the male-gaze pleasing Hollywood conceptions of Beauty & the Beast, The Shape of Water, and King Kong tend to make the pairing “monster and human female” it tuend out I had never written that in a story. Whenever I had merfolk or cat-shifters or such it was always the female character or *both* characters who shifted/were monstrous. So I had to write one on the train on the way down, and it came out fantastic. Nothing like a deadline to motivate me, eh?
Funnily enough, most of the stories at the reading had female monsters, and when I mentioned this to J. Blackmore, the editor of the “Beauty and the Beast” themed erotica anthology A BEASTLY AFFAIR, she mentioned that was true of many of the stories in that book as well. (Now I’m editing an anthology on a similar theme, though not limited to female characters at all, entitled “Fantastic Beasts and Where To F*** Them” and I am seeing more of that trend. Methinks erotica writers write more about sex as transformation, and in fiction the main character has to have agency, rather than centering on a passive role.)
A snippet of the segment I’m in:
You can tell the reading took place in a bar (The Daisy) because of how red my face is–that’s what happens when you put alcohol into the fine-tuned machine that is my body! *smile*
At Heliosphere we had a screening of the whole 6 minute segment at the reading and Vice did a fantastic job of capturing why so many of us find writing erotica about monsters empowering. A friend recently binge-watched all the Slutever episodes and I’m probably about to do the same! Thanks, Karley, for including us on your journey through 21st century women’s sexuality!