Today’s post is gonna be a getting to know J. Marie mish-mosh. I hope ya’ll can handle me! At least I gave ya’ a couple … um … stimulating (?) pictures. At least I think they are ;). You can judge for yourselves. Before you read too much farther, I need to forewarn you, I do get a little graphic in this post (As if you couldn’t tell by the picture). Without further ado, on with the blog!!
A friend of mine posed a question and suggested that maybe I could answer it ‘in my own words’ within this blog post. The question was: Why do people like pain mixed with their pleasure?
I really wasn’t surprised by this question, especially since I’m writing about a BDSM club in the novel I’m currently plugging away on. I admit I had to think about it for a little while; even though I knew my answer right away. I just struggled with how to put it all into words without getting so damned clinical!
Well, here’s my answer … ‘Cause some people just do dammit! Who doesn’t like a little hair tug, a spank, a pinch or a pull while in the midst of some hot monkey sex? I mean, am I the only one? I highly doubt it!
Truth is, at the height of passion, a little pain just enhances many people’s pleasure. Why? Quite simply: Dopamine. It’s our ‘pleasure chemical’. It acts as an interface between stress, pain and emotions, or between physical and emotional events, and apparently, it’s activated with both positive and negative stimuli.
Interesting, right? It’s a wonder why some of us have our signals all mixed up …
Just like many of us seek out that visceral reaction (fear, pain, sadness, pleasure, intense happiness, relief, etc.) while we read, write, or watch something, many of us seek out that ‘high’ we get from the natural dopamine in our brain with great sex mixed with a little pain.
It’s like a drug … no, it is a drug; albeit a naturally produced drug. Like a pain pump, you get that extra ‘bump’ when that special someone slaps your ass or tugs your hair at the height of pleasure. It’s addicting and when you get that release, you just can’t get enough. At least I can’t 😉
Please bear in mind, this is only my opinion. I am, by no means, a ‘sexpert’. But, I do know what I like. You don’t have to agree with me at all. In fact, I know that many of you will disagree. And you know what? I’m totally cool with that :D. A little pain during intense pleasure is NOT for everyone.
Recently, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by a fellow Writing.com member for the website’s Horror/Scary Newsletter. I’d like to share a few of the questions and my answers here:
“We all have a little darkness hidden within, I just choose to let mine out every once in a while on paper.”
– J. Marie Ravenshaw
“This month, my victim is J. Marie Ravenshaw who is widely known as a talented author and leader of her own horror group called, Horror, Inc. I encourage you all to check out her group and the items below we’ve featured. I hope you enjoy getting to know her as much as I did.”
Brooke- Why do you think readers want to “escape” with a genre that stimulates fear and anxiety as it considers horrible events?
J. Marie- I obviously can’t speak for everyone that chooses to read horror. However, I can tell you why I do. In my opinion, horror elicits visceral reactions that many of us do not experience on a regular basis. Those of us that read in the horror genre regularly, tend to crave those reactions. A well described scene can make your stomach drop, a chill run up and down your spine, and your hair stand on end. I think we all seek a visceral reaction when we read- whatever that genre may be. A horror story just tends to elicit more reaction than others.
Brooke- If you could be invisible for a day, how would you spend the day?
J. Marie- Hmm … wow! What a question. Well, I’d probably study people because they fascinate me. Many times people only show you what they want you to see. So, just think about what they’d show you when they think that no one is looking! I’d study their nuances, memorize each facial expression; I’d just enjoy analyzing everything about them. After that, I’d probably rush home and write something. Hopefully, it’d be worth the read.
Brooke- There is a strand of thinking that sees erotica as liberating, as subversive, even a radical gesture towards freedom etc. How far does this kind of thinking inform what you do? Do you see yourself as subversive or radical?
J. Marie- I don’t think that Erotica- as a genre- is either, ‘subversive toward the government’ or ‘radical to the status quo’. As a matter of fact, I’ve never related my writing erotica to ANYTHING political. I just don’t see it that way. I write erotica simply for its entertainment value. I may be seen as a radical for some of the things I choose to write about- BDSM being one of them- but, no, I do not see myself as subversive or radical.
After writing a few stories and learning the ropes, I started to look at writing erotica as a wonderful weapon in my writer’s arsenal. When I first started writing again, I had a horrible habit of ‘telling’ my readers what was going on in a particular scene. Learning how to write good erotica helped me to learn how to ‘show’ my reader what was going on. So, for me, knowing how to write good Erotica has been liberating- it really has seemed to set my writing free. For any writer that has trouble ‘painting the picture’ I highly recommend giving erotica a try.
Brooke- What do you like best (or least) about writing?
J. Marie- I like the release. Yeah, I know that sounds bad. But, I assure you that this is very true for me. When I finish a story, I feel relieved, lighter, sated. It’s as if the weight of the day has been completely lifted off my shoulders. It’s downright therapeutic for me.
Brooke- If you could have a dinner party with four authors you admire (famous or not), who would you invite?
J. Marie- Only four? My goodness, I don’t think I can narrow it down. So … I think I’m gonna cheat. I would have to say my favorite authors … Laurell K. Hamilton and Charlaine Harris. Then I’d have to go ahead and say all the wonderful author friends that have spent endless hours with me talking about writing and other random things via Writing.com chat, Skype, FB, and Twitter. You all know who you are. I don’t know what I would do without you.
Brooke- Tell us something you hate doing and why? (Not writing related preferably)
J .Marie- Oh, this is easy. For those of you who know me, you know there is one thing that I absolutely HATE dealing with. You might as well cue the laughter now … I cannot stand boogers or mucous. Yeah that’s right, I said boogers. I work as a nurse in real life and I have no problems with ANY other body fluid … just respiratory secretions. I’m completely cool in the patient’s room as I am suctioning them. However, as soon as I leave their room, I’m gagging. So … um … yeah, I HATE suctioning.
Brooke- What is your writing technique? Do you create an outline, or do you just come up with an idea, start writing, and see where it takes you?
J. Marie- With my short stories, I tend to start with an idea and run with it. With novel writing, I prefer to use an outline. It’s just nice to have direction for a longer piece of work. But I do have to say, I have been flying by the seat of my pants without an outline as I’ve been writing my current book, L’Escalier du Diable. What a wild ride it’s been so far …
Brooke- Are you a morning person or a night person?
J. Marie- I am most definitely a night person. I work the graveyard shift at a local hospital. Even when I’m not working, I’m up all night. I tend to write the most at night. It just seems to be when my muse decides to ‘let ‘er rip’. That also just happens to be the only time my house is completely silent.
Brooke- Do you think marketable horror fiction is really more about shock value than telling a good story?
J. Marie- I definitely think that ‘marketable’ horror fiction is more about shock value. But it’s the well written stories that really stick with you. I think a good horror story is more about messing with your mind. It’s the horror story that keeps your eyes glued to the screen and keeps you wondering what’s going to happen next that gets my heart pumping.
Brooke- As a woman writing in the erotic genre, are you comfortable with men working at the genre, and is there a difference between erotica written by men and that written by women? And related to this, do you think gender makes a difference to the way it is read and if so how?
J. Marie- This is a LOADED question if I ever saw one. Whatcha tryin’ to do Brooke? Kill me? Just kidding. I’ll try to answer as best as I can without sounding like a total moron.
For the first part of the question, of course I’m comfortable with men writing in the erotica genre. I think the true question is: are men comfortable with women writing erotica? I mean, it wasn’t that long ago that a woman writing about graphic sex was considered a ‘no-no’. We’ve just started to make our voices known in the genre. Any woman that says she has never thought about sex or fantasized about the act is bold-faced lying in my opinion. Why not write about it?
Honestly, I don’t think I can pinpoint any consistent differences between men and women writing erotica. Many have said that men focus on the physical while women focus on the emotional. With the erotica that I have read, written by both sexes, I really can’t say that is 100% true. A good fictional story should be written in the voice of the characters you create- not the masculine or feminine voice of the author. But, then, I guess you’ll really have to make that decision for yourself.
As far as gender making a difference to the way it is read … mayhap it does, mayhap it doesn’t. However, I really think that maturity level plays a big role in how erotica is read. If you truly do not know the difference between erotica and porn and you just see it as another way to ‘get off’, then I feel sorry for you. There is just so much more to erotica than just the act. Pornography has no artistic value at all. It’s simply a tool to get off. Erotica, written well, doesn’t just stimulate your … ‘parts’; it should stimulate your brain as well.
If you’d like to read the interview and some of the featured stories from myself and a few of my great friends feel free to visit: http://www.writing.com/main/newsletters/action/archives/id/4921-Kidnapped-JMarie-Ravenshaw-Speaks.html
Well, that’s all I’ve got … for now. A little glimpse into the blackened mind of J. Marie …
Until next time … have a ‘Spanking’ good time! As a matter of fact, have a ‘tug’ on me. Oh, and … make it hurt real good 😉