I haven’t written much erotica lately. I’m generally a private person, plus I was raised in an emotionally repressive family, so admitting publicly to any weakness is extremely difficult for me. But I’ll admit that personal stress is just about killing me. I know other writers who are going through much worse times now, so I feel a bit like a whiner even mentioning the death in the family, the company I worked at for so many years closing its doors, a bit of a health scare, and other family drama on top of all that.
Misery isn’t a contest. We’re all winners at this race to unhappiness, and at the same time, things could always be worse. That’s what keeps you up late at night, tossing and turning. It’s the great monster that eats up the hours of darkness and makes you watch them disappear with eyes wide open– that things could always be worse. And you have imagined every possible variation on worse, haven’t you?
Sometimes, don’t you wish you could hang a sign around your neck that says, “I’m really fragile right now. Please be gentle with me.” So that when you start daydreaming at a traffic light about the list of things you must do that you’ve never done before and start panicking a little about ‘how on earth am I going to take care of this’ and don’t see it turn green that the person right behind you wouldn’t sit on their horn. Or that you didn’t feel such crushing shame for breaking into tears because some little frustration like the market carts being stuck together overwhelmed you?And wouldn’t it be nice if the entire world would just pause while you deal with your troubles so that you don’t have to run to catch up later?
So many things can stop your ability to write. It doesn’t have to be extreme grief or one of you worst fears coming true. Things can be going great and you can still be blocked. The stories, they’re always with you. The technical skills, the craft of writing, that’s in your muscle memory now. But the desire to write? That’s the thing that eludes us when we’re blocked.
It may be worse for erotic writers because how do you write passion and desire when you don’t have any? My emotions have practically flatlined from the strain at this point. I cant summon it no matter how hard I try. So if your writing portfolio is fat and sassy right now, if seduction twinkles from your fingers like rubies from a maharajah’s rings, and you pass me on the street looking dispirited and unstoried, spare an ounce of desire for me, won’t you? Because I’m tapped out.