A non-fiction collection of inside insights about writing dirty, the power of words, taboo language, the freedoms and limitations of genres, fulfilling your creative drive, and the business of writing, this behind-the-scenes companion piece to the author’s erotica and romance novels takes readers inside the process of writing and selling flirty-dirty stories.
Part coming out story, part creative manifesto, all subversive, RDC connects readers to creative resources in off-the-wall ways, examines the absurdities of publishing convention, and will leave you vibrating with the desire to fall in love, have out-of-this-world sex on a mountaintop, and write a smutty story or two of your own.
FROM THE INTRODUCTION: "Managing Expectations: I'm writing for you, but I'm a liar"
This collection of essays-confessions began as a gift to my amazing beta readers—you—who wanted to know the story behind the story—and whether it was true that the most contentious negotiating point in my first publishing contract really centred on the word ‘cunt.’ ... Along the way, what was supposed to be an honest-(mostly)-but-amusing story of how a (dirty) novel gets published and sold in this Brave New World morphed into a coming out story of sorts and then a personal-and-professional manifesto about why I want to write filthy, dirty books, and, by extension, why you should read them… or, better yet, write a few of your own.
As you’re reading, there’s one thing you need to keep in mind. Everything a writer gives you to read—even if she claims it’s non-fiction, memoir, and nothing-but-the-truth—everything she gives you to read is a crafted narrative.
(Never forget that.)
...I want you to treat this story as a dialogue. I wrote it for you, after all, and I’m telling it to you—just to you. If you have a question—if you need a clarification—ask me, and I’ll do my best to answer.
And I promise to lie only when it’s absolutely necessary.
Because I am trying to be truthful—you have no idea how hard that is for a fiction writer—most of the chapters are structured as Confessions. But there are a lot of interruptions. Questions. Interjections.
Every single one of them is your fault, by the way.
But we’ll get to that.
Let’s manufacture a beginning to the story, shall we?
Note: Originally published as CUNT versus PUSSY: an incomplete confession in rough draft, this edition omits the fiction teasers, and comes with a title and cover that won’t offend your in-laws & children.
|Publisher:||GENRES were made to be BROKEN|
|Product dimensions:||5.00(w) x 7.99(h) x 0.59(d)|
Table of Contents
Managing Expectations: I'm writing for YOU but I’m a liar
So I write this dirty, dirty book...
You tell me the title really sucks
And then, I get hit by a truck (it’s a metaphor)
Six days crafting a five sentence bio
Irving Layton on poetry, orgasms and academics
The first pitch
A bad synopsis can be a decent pitch
Mail it out, throw up—repeat
OMFG she knows a publisher?
I don't get an agent
Rejection blows goats
The writer’s “FU” impulse by Erica Jong
“If at first you don’t succeed, you shouldn’t try sky diving”
I fall in love by the river and stop being crazy
Susan Sontag and Ernest Hemingway in a conversation about sex (and writing)
The results of five (actually, two) hours of research
Was Sigmund Freud a Gemini?
How NOT to write a synopsis
Breaking rules works
“So… may I see some more?”
Indulge me: I really want you to read his entire “I Want You” email, ok?
Social realist erotica: a collaborative definition from Julia Cameron and me
My excessive attachment to the c-word
A really bad contract
I can't find any typos
He likes it, he still really, really likes ME!
I almost forgot to tell you about her (my) name...
I’m not real
I’m not real... but I can create myself—and also, let me whine, Dad!
Wait. What happened to that woman...
Rantings of a Mad Girl turned into a business plan (sort of)
I try to create a vision
On second thought: Maybe Sylvia Plath shouldn’t be my role model
OMFG not another creative visualization
Art, sex, imagination
Periods are over-rated; also, most people sext with one hand, not two
Hyphenating “g-spot” and other ways to make a grown man cry
My parents still love, although they’d love me more if I had written something they could show to their friends
I need a blurb but divorce is a buzz kill
Leslie McIntyre on having it all
A picture is worth a 1000 words
The way to hell is paved with the best intentions
Isn’t it their job to sell it?
Instead of really preparing myself for the launch, I wrap myself in Persian Poetry
How do you criticize someone’s sexual fantasies, exactly?
Squirming with embarrassment, and not at what you might think...
And then, everything falls apart
But surely there’s a purpose to all this
Wait, I lied
He was teenie weenie, and that’s why you should read Anne Lamott
I’d really like someone to blame, but...
He loves me! He loves me again!
I go to Cuba and write another book
Do you think this is true?
I come back from Cuba and have an identity crisis
Let us make one thing easier for you
Reading Sylvia Plath when you’re existentially angsting is a TERRIBLE idea
I decide to do nothing
When all else fails, consult Cheryl Strayed
I don’t have a clue how to do that
Steve Jobs gives me some advice on being naked... and dead
I hate writers
Why we like having sex with artists
What do you mean you want instructions?
You know what I just realized? This is also my coming out monologue
So then I go to this conference and everything changes...
Gloria Steinem told me...
BONUS: Why writing and reading erotica and romance is important
A VERY USEFUL APPENDIX
Priorities, baby, priorities—or, ‘I don’t’ as an answer to ‘How do you do it all?’
Meditation for writers, ‘Mom! I need you!’ and struggling to stay on that tightrope