Thursday, April 03, 2008

Erotic Romance:The Good, The Bad,The Ugly

Hi all, Tambra here

There's a debate going on in the romance writing community about erotic romance.
I don't think readers care what's going on. They want a good read, erotic romance or not.

Erotic romance is giving women readers what men have had for years. A choice.
Some women are saying their marriages have improved by reading erotic romance. My guess is they are finally speaking up to their partners about fantasties they have and would like to try.

Erotic romance has detailed love scenes and the language is plainer in what the body parts are called. We do not degrade our heroines and our heroes. Read any of my titles. ALL of them are romance. In fact, all of my publishers have guidelines for their erotic romance lines and they all specifically state, it must be a romance.

It is a fact that women who read romance give their husbands more sex than the women who don't, so I can see how the erotic romance readers would certainly fall into this category.

Women appear to be enjoying this newfound freedom because our sales prove they want to read it. The readers are showing with their pocketbooks what they want.

Am I a bad person because I write erotic and sensual romance? No.
Am I prostituting myself to get published? No, again. My first published romance short didn't even have a love scene in it. I let my story dictate the best way it should be written.

Commercial fiction is all about entertaining the reader. Some readers desire to read stories where the bedroom door is open and want more than what traditional romance offers.

The problem the erotic romance writers are having is other writers accusing them of writing porn and prostituting themselves by writing in this genre. Professional jealousy? Perhaps. Are they threatened by the elements we incorporate into our stories? That's another possibility.

Number one, the accusers should do a little research before they start calling people names. It helps to know exactly what pornography is and does.

Here is what Pornography is: Pornography degrades and exploits women and represents them as nothing more an object for sex, not a fully functioning human with feelings.

Erotic romance writers stories do arouse and there's no doubt about that we who write it won't argue that point. But just because our stories are sexually stimulating doesn't make it porn.
We also have well developed characters and plot just like traditional or sensual romance.

Has any of these people read more than one erotic romance? I've read a number of books that were not up to standard, yet if I stopped there and proceeded to paint all the genre with a black brush would that have been fair? No. It would not.

There is plenty of room in the romance genre for all us. If you don't like what we write, then don't read it. It all comes down to choice.

Time will tell if this area of romance will be accepted by those within our ranks. What matters most is whether or not the readers decide if erotic romance is good, bad or ugly. If sales are any indication, they think erotic romance is a wicked good read.

Hugs to all,
Tambra Kendall
posted by Tambra at 4:22 pm


Well said Tambra. I'm not a big erotica reader but I do like a nice spicy story now and then.

I work in a bookstore and it drives me crazy hearing people that put down romance books. Especially when they have never even tried them.

I do love the fact that romances have branched out into so many sub genres. It has something for everyone.

I really get a kick out of someone telling me they hate romance books and then asks for an author that writes romance. It happens all the time and when I tell them that this is a romance author they are dumbfounded. Their expressions can be priceless. I love expanding their knowledge.

6:18 pm  

Hi Leah,

That has to be a satisfying aspect of working at a bookstore.

It is nice that romance has branched out to the point if I want to read romantic suspense one day and a hot historical I can.

The freedom to choose is a wonderful thing.

Thanks so much for posting!

6:34 pm  

The fact isthat erotic romance in any form likeany other genre is goingto take flack. We who write it know why it is we write it. The readers are HUGE fans of our work and to suggest we prostitute outselves out is ridiculous. I am a high paid call girl LOL!

Great post Tambra :)


8:49 pm  

Great points all around, Tambra! I write stories first. As far as the creative process goes, for me, the character relationships and conflicts seem to dictate the heat levels.

8:57 pm  

Thanks Sascha,
I totally agree with your comment.

Thanks so much for stopping by!


12:35 am  

Hi Liane,

You are so right about the character relationship and conflict coming first and then the heat level is determined.

I'm the same way when I write my stories to.

Thanks for taking the time to post a comment!


12:37 am  

Well said Tambra!

3:52 am  

Thanks Michelle!


11:16 pm  

The greater irony being, the folks who liken erotic romance to porn-lit have probably never read it. Anytime you get a person with a disparaging comment about an entire genre it tends to come from those who've never read a single story let alone enough to form an intelligent opinion.

1:23 am  

Tambra, I see the benefit of reading romance to strengthen my marriage. As long as a good plot goes along with the romance, I enjoy reading it.

I have a happy husband. :D More men should read romance books so they can figure out what to do.

Hugs, JJ

8:33 pm  

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