This article at at the Guardian made me see red:
Ebooks roundup: Fifty shades of new erotica and roll the dice for a price
Populist titles tick the genre boxes, publishers get creative with eshort tasters and price-setting takes a new twist
I love how the author manages to get her web-hits by name dropping FSOG while not actually bothering to read any of the books she’s pissing on:
Meanwhile, explicit tales of erotic entanglement are legion as publishers chase the market opened up by the runaway success of Fifty Shades of Grey, still dominating the bestseller chart. This month sees the launch of Beth Kery’s Because You Are Mine, to be published in eight weekly instalments (Headline, ￡£1.49 each); Destined to Play by Indigo Bloome (HarperCollins, ￡£1.99); Marina Anderson’s Haven of Obedience (Hachette Digital, £3.99); Diary of a Submissive by Sophie Morgan (Michael Joseph, £2.99); and three collections of erotic short stories by Tobsha Learner titled, with unashamed camp, Quiver, Yearn and Tremble (Hachette Digital, £2.99). The plots involve – well. Do you really need to know the plots?
Yes, Ms Page, we DO REALLY NEED TO KNOW THE PLOTS.
It is the height of hypocrisy, in the digital age, that these literary arbiters will gladly get web-hits from the mention of a best selling erotic novel, but won’t actually stoop to read one.
Here, for what it is worth, was my response:
“The plots involve – well. Do you really need to know the plots?”
Yes, I really need to know the plots. That literary critics have felt it so beneath them to critique erotic fiction has certainly contributed to the sad reality that few writers within the erotic fiction genre have developed the sort of storytelling skills of other fiction genres.
If, as Iain Banks eloquently said, the genre of science fiction examines how humans deal with change, then erotic fiction examines how humans deal with desire. Within those parameters, there is a great deal of scope for theme, story, character and conflict.
Every year, the Bad Sex Awards come along and the Guardian posts yet another article on how sad it is that no one writes sex well in novels. Not terribly surprising — when literary luminaries think it so beneath them to actually read any well-written sex, or can be arsed to critically review novels in which the good sex writing appears.
Sexual desire is a fairly universal experience and yet the literary world is still stuck in the grip of Aristotles’ insistence that no rational thought is possible under its sway. If ever there was an unquestioning, uncritical acceptance of dogma, this has to be it. It’s been 90 years since Lady Chatterly’s Lover was written. Could you please get over it?
There are wonderful stories out there about how humans navigate the storm of desire. Presidents court impeachment, the great and good are brought low by it. And the literary world’s response, for the most part, is to tiptoe around the reality of those tempests like parsimonious prigs picking their way down a shit-strewn alley.
When some adventurous writer doesn’t follow that banal path, it’s labeled ‘porn’. Which only goes to show what sheltered little lives most critics live. Because if you did consume any, you’d be able to tell the difference between porn and erotic fiction: no one in their right puts conflict into porn.
If you are an erotic fiction writer or reader, I urge you to take your digital ass over to the Guardian and give them what for. The attitude is patronizing and the tactic is blatantly opportunistic.