In our contemporary society, many people have preconceived notions about the art of writing erotica. Erotic literature has become a taboo theme because of its peculiar prurient qualities. It has become an object of scorn, and it’s a scathing attack on entire literature. And the bitter irony is that some supposedly educated people, or better put, some acclaimed literary pundits also have deep-seated contempt for the refreshing literary genre—erotica!
‘Erotic literature’, as defined by Wikipedia, ‘is (in a broad sense) any literary or artistic work that deals substantively with subject matter that is erotically stimulating or sexually arousing but (in a strict sense) is NOT considered to be PORNOGRAPHIC[emphasis is mine]. It further asserts that, ‘Erotic art may use any artistic form to depict erotic content, including painting, sculpture, drama, film or music. Erotic literature and erotic photography have become genres in their own right’.
The definition above is a simple explanation of what erotic art entails. However, it remains the most misunderstood genre because of the lack of the ability of some people to differentiate it from pornography. Some people still think erotic art and pornography are the same. But, with absolutely certitude, I put it to you that erotic art portrays the sexual bliss of people—and to also bring to the fore—the aesthetic appeal of eroticism.
Writing erotica is an art. It is artistic sexual ‘telekinesis’: you use your pen to pursue the beauty of love, and perhaps also use your pen to make some sexual acrobatics. You create a sexy atmosphere with your pen, while the beauty of the art is still intact. There are clear semantic dissimilarities between pornography and erotica. In porn, there are DVDs and websites that show naked people and sexual acts in order to make people feel sexually excited. In order words, the key aims of porn are immediate titilation and arousal. Porn is also a commercial art, while erotica is primarily concerned with the sensual creation of human beauty, artistically!
In porn, there’s objectification of women thereby reducing women to mere sex objects whose primary goal is to satisfy man’s lustful needs.
To add verisimilitude, telecasting pornographic visuals, and in sexually explicit language are pure pornography. Debauchery, sensuality, and wild lust are the features of pornography, not the elements of erotic art!
And to those complaining that I use sexually explicit terms while writing erotica, I want you to understand that you can’t use a hammer to eat rice. All genres of literature have their appropriate registers. As fears, mysteries, ghosts, demons, gore, cannibalism, satanism, etc. are to horror genre, so are kissing, pecking, cuddling, and other sexually explicit lexical items to erotic literature.
Writing Erotica is not easy, and if it were easy, prostitutes would have been the best erotic literature writers. So, with this, I think you should know that writing erotic contents is not based on one’s level of lewdness, but a natural flair. Furthermore, we have many brilliant marriage counsellors that are not married. I know many of them. That’s to once again affirm that writing erotic pieces doesn’t require a sex maniac; it requires a person with high-octane imagination!
The whys and the wherefores of this undisguised contempt for erotic literature and erotic art writers remain unsolved mysteries. And the icy contempt for this orgasmic genre called erotica has reached its intriguing crescendo as many people keep describing me with demeaning epithets. And those that understand that it’s just a mere piece of work of art, that it’s just a figment of my imagination, that I am not as lewd as my erotic contents portray, accord me great respect for such literary prowess. And some even motivate me through financial inducements, and also describe me with epic epithets for my nascent erotic art flair!
Cyclically, I’ve faced a potpourri of pain, rebuke, and subtle marginalization on this street of Facebook, because I write erotica. My erotic contents are wittingly or unwittingly misunderstood, and that’s why I stopped writing erotic poems lately. A man I respected greatly unfriended me. According to him, my erotic poems threatened his sanity, and I had to let him go because friendship is one of the sociological phenomena that you can never force its continuity. In this life, you fraternize with people that your philosophies are in sync with theirs. Many people have unfriended me, but I’m not even bothered!
Just for the record, I’m a highly disciplined person. I know my dreams, and I’m assiduously working towards their actualization. I know where I came from. I know my people, and I will never clutch to irrelevancies in this life. I know where I’m going, just forget that I play here. I’m not a sex maniac; I only write erotic literature. I appear ‘unserious’ here, but none of you can know what I diligently do behind the scenes.
One of the reasons I won’t worry unduly over people’s bitter, icy censure of my personality is that, in this life, whatever you do—good or bad—some people will never appreciate it. Lie down for people to tread on you, they’ll still blame you for not being flat enough. Sadly, such is life.
Mark writes from Damaturu, Yobe state.