Official Blog of Phaze Books, Digital First Publisher of Romance!

Monday, March 27, 2006


Hello all!

I'm just curious to know what others think about this.

I have recently met an erotica writer. Whether or not he's good in my opinion I will not say, but I will say he's a published writer (which doesn't necessarily mean he's good, but I digress...)

One thing he does in his writing is that he refers to the sex organs in different ways throughout his work, just for the sake of using different terminology. So in one paragraph it may be a "love nest", next time its a "love box", then a "pleasure tool", a "pulsing prop", a "treasure cave", a "chocolate stick" (or vanilla stick depending on the race in question), and on and on and on. Thankfully, I have yet to see him use "throbbing manhood". (And let me apologize to those of you who do use it, but I just think that phrase is abominable.)

Now I personally don't like this. I stick to the two to three fairly common terms for the sex organs, and don't get very creative beyond that. I am creative about describing activity, but I don't put my descriptive powers into renaming the hardware over and over and over. I just think its dumb, pointless, and makes the work sound kinda cheesy. And most books and articles I've read about writing erotica recommend that you do NOT re-name stuff just for the sake of variety.

What are your thoughts?


PS -- I posted this in The Starlight Lounge too, so if you answered over there, no need to do double work!


Nonny said...

"Love box"? "Pleasure tool"? "Chocolate stick"??


Speaking as a reader, it'd hit the wall. Nothing throws me out of a sex scene faster than silly euphemisms. And I'm sorry, but "chocolate stick" brings some really bad mental images to mind.

I like descriptive writing in sex scenes, but I don't want it to be "purple prose." If you're really deep in character POV, I suppose it could work -- but your character referring to it as her "treasure cave" damn well better be a spelunker.

I like sensual, explicit, description. This is neither.

Alessia Brio said...

Such variety within the same ... um ... slippery piece *grin* would be a MAJOR turn off. In context, I can ... um ... swallow *grin* the use of "throbbing manhood" (but DEFINITELY not in the context contemporary erotica). It all depends on the characters, really. If I'm writing from the POV of a man who really does think of his partner as his ... um ... blooming orchid *grin* then I just might (maybe) use the term.

Consistency is key.

Mychael Black said...
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Mychael Black said...

Trying that again...(thedevilsconcubine was from an old blog):

I'm with Nonny. I can't handle purple prose at all. Don't make it too clinical, but don't sugar-coat it either.

I tend to switch between two words for the male bits; have yet to write anything for the female parts.


Tula said...


I thought perhaps it was just me. I couldn't believe it when I was reading his stuff. At one point I actually started to count and he had 9 different terms and phrases for the male organ alone within a 4 paragraph span. I couldn't take it anymore after "engorged sword".

**shaking my head**

Tula said...

All of a sudden I just want to write the most trite, adjective consumed, cliche ridden piece of psedo-erotic dreck just for my amusement.


Mychael Black said...

Oh. Go here:

You *might* have to register to get to it, but at ERWF, we had an alpha male clench-off fest. Some priceless posts for this one. ;)

RobinSlick said...

Engorged sword?

That's hilarious.

Never once have I used euphemisms when I write. Or when I speak.

Hey, I know, I think I'll mutter that one next time I have sex. "Oh my heavens look at your engorged sword."

I'm sure thar will go over really well.


Tula said...

Mychael...checked out the link. Some of that stuff was priceless!

Robin, if you get around to working that engorged sword reference into...conversation, please let me know how it went.

M Barnette said...
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M Barnette said...

Oh my god... those are so bad.

Engorged sword? Ack.

Blooming orchid?

Feels a challenge coming on...

His pulsating rod of masculine prowess pierced her dewy petals...


eXtasy has a 'purple prose' story that's being written for April Fools. I should have gotten into that one because after this converstaion I think I would have done well.

And yeah, the Alpha clench off thing at Em's site is a hoot. I was dying laughing at some of that stuff.

Shayne Carmichael said...

Oh, lord. I can't stand the overly prosey terms either. Gargantuan throbbing manhood included. It reminded everybody of a gorilla.
Can't remember if I used that for my Alpha male challenge. I just remember the supremely masculine feet I fetished over. *snickers*