Once you read enough stories from an author, it becomes decently clear that they have a certain style and will default to writing from a certain perspective. In my opinion, erotica is where this kind of predictability bleeds through the most. Usually, after going through around three of any writer’s stories, you know the basic beats all of their stories will take.
Shortly after discovering this, I wanted to make sure I didn’t fall into that trap. I was halfway through writing Being More Social when I first had this thought, and after I started The Good The Bad and the Molly I looked for similar tropes. The Eerily Smart Girl, the Asshole Protagonist Who Is Self-Aware But Also Not, a world where romantic/sexual jealousy is noticeably weirdly absent, etc. I got frustrated with my own writing style for a long time there, which was why shortly after starting GBM I took a break from writing for about six months, which was definitely an attempt at career suicide in retrospect.
I feel like this is something I’ve had to be constantly aware of, and as soon as I forget, my stories fall back into the soup of sameness. Same types of characters, same atmosphere, same general outlook of the protagonist – after all, it’s written from the same author’s perspective, and there’s only a certain amount any human being can imagine another viewpoint. I don’t think any writer can fully successfully transform their thinking into someone else.
Is this a bad thing? I don’t really know. On the one hand, if you like those three first stories you read from a particular erotica writer, score. You basically have a guarantee you’re going to like every story of theirs unless you specifically like new stories. And a lot of people are on erotica sites to masturbate and leave. If you find a story by a particular author that you find hot, and you find the second story hot for the same reason, people aren’t thinking, “Oh, well, it’s the same type of hotness, I should jack off to something new.” No, they’re instead thinking, “Fuck yes.”
On the other hand, a lot of writers can write themselves into a corner. I’m trying to stay well connected in the online erotica writing world, and I know several authors who are known for writing supernatural stories or incest stories or mind control stories, as a singular genre. Plus, they’ve been doing it for years. If they start something different now, at best it’ll very likely be unpopular. At worst, people will get mad – I’ve seen that before and it’s not pretty.
So at this time, after basically saying in my last blog “if you’re a fan of me you’ll have to be patient,” I want to say in this one, to everyone who’s reading this or has supported me in one way or another: thank you so much. I feel a freedom to write in any way my mind chooses to go, and that doesn’t come easily when writing erotica online. It comes from having a very understanding and versatile reader base. I have you all to thank for that. I have an opportunity very few in this industry have, even if I could be doing “better numbers” if I successfully finished a piece every week and always made it about mind-controlled siblings or werewolves or something. I see you all, and appreciate you all. I might be late to respond to an email or a comment or something, but every response and sign of support leaves a mark on me that I can’t even fully express. Genuinely, thank you so much. I’ll talk to you all next week.