Sunday, April 11, 2010

Dealing with the S-E-X Word

I have just written a book that I know many members of my own family are going to dislike.

There is cussing in this book, which is bad enough. Worse, there is S-E-X. Between people who aren't married! With multiple partners. Even that dreaded M word - masturbation.

I have always found our American attitude towards sex to be mystifying. Today I came across this article that explains the bi-polar relationship with sex and passion in modern America.

So, as authors do we cave to the puritans or the flirt with the hedonists?

This world is nothing if not diverse. There are people in all parts of the world making decisions every day that I may or may not agree with. People are comfortable doing things to their bodies that horrify me, worry me, turn me on and make me curious. Sexual pleasure is taken in forms familiar and unthinkable, frightening and intriguing.

When it comes to my writing, I have decided to allow my characters to dictate their own behavior. This means that sometimes they shock me and other times their prudery annoys me - at least it is as honest on the page as I can make it.

I can look my family in the eye and say "this is the book I intended to write and my characters act true to themselves."

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