How I Came to Write Male-Centric Erotic Romance
Hi my name is Spencer Dryden. I am the author of Tricks of the Trade, a new story from Fireborn Publishing. It is one of a series of works I have published with tradesmen as my male leads. I call my brand of fiction ‘male centric’. It’s not a recognized a a sub genre but I am trying to distinguish my fiction from other erotic romance. The principal difference is my point of view is strictly from the male character. Anything we learn about the women in my stories comes from dialogue and action. My typical trope is demonstrated in Tricks of the Trade, a slightly clueless guy is drawn into the orbit of a sexually assertive woman. it’s a big twist on the typical tale of the billionaire bad boy, ego maniac or self destructive alpha male who must be rescued from his destructive life style.
One of the most common author prompts suggest by blog hosts is to recount how you came to writing fiction. Here’s my story.
I turned sixty-five on Jan 8th, 2015. Three years ago, I started a new career in a field I never imagined I would be in back in my twenties—writing fiction—erotic romance to be precise.
I have been enchanted by female allure since the first time I started feeling that urge from down below at the sight of a naked woman—over a half century ago. I never imagined I’d be writing about it though. I come from a very sexually repressed background. I grew up believing that erotica was dirty, sinful, mind and soul destroying trash. Fifty years and Fifty Shades later I became aware of how many women, including my mother, were going straight to hell for reading it. Or were they? I don’t believe that any more.
Erotic Romance is monstrously popular as measured by sales, but reasonably well hidden, especially since the advent of electronic readers like Kindle. However, one gift of reaching your sixties is you start throwing off taboos like so much dead skin.
Unlike many of my fellow authors, I didn’t grow up with a life long love of words. In fact, I was terrible at reading and writing. Growing up, I rarely read fiction for entertainment. I started writing fiction at age sixty-two. The only fiction I wrote before then was the marketing reports I prepared for my bosses during my tenuous white collar career.
I came into writing by accident, during my white-collar years, learning the craft on the fly through composing business letters, proposals and reports. A mentor told me one way to stand out in a professional career is to speak and write. I am a natural at public speaking. I guess it’s like the gift many writers have for writing. From a young age I could stand up in front of a group and carry off clear and entertaining presentations. Thanks to the now nearly obsolete tool of the dictation machine, I found a writing voice. Having a secretary to transcribe for me hid my complete inability to spell and punctuate correctly. (Suzie, where are you now?) I wrote many articles for business and professional magazines.
As time passed, the visibility I earned from speaking and writing fostered aspirations of writing longer non-fiction works. After I became an at-home dad, I set out to be a male version of Erma Bombeck. That dream died under a pile of dirty laundry. I didn’t have Erma’s constitution. She rose early and wrote while her children slept. Mine never slept at the same time. I did most of my parenting under advance stages of sleep deprivation—not a condition conductive to creativity.
My forties turned to fifties and then sixties. I passed from a man at the threshold of middle age to a man on the threshold of oblivion. In the wake of my mothers passing in April of 2012, I spent a long time alone at her beach house. While walking the beach every day, my head started filling with ideas for stories. Eventually, I had one of those epiphanies, realizing that if I didn’t act on some of my dreams, there wasn’t going to be anything for anyone to remember at my wake.
I started scribbling little stories of erotic romance. A lot of it was therapy I guess, with plenty of fantasy thrown in. Fiction is a great vehicle for seeking revenge without the threat of jail time. Even better, in erotic romance, I can sleep with any woman I want and my wife could care less.
I broke through my taboos about writing erotica, but assumed a pen name knowing that family, friends and associates would drop dead in horror if they knew of my interests. I’m not ashamed of my new profession. I simply don’t have the energy to argue with them, but I don’t want to blatantly offend them either. I’m still in the closet and intend to stay here. My intention is to have poster sized reproductions of the tawdry covers from my books on display at my wake. That’ll give them something to talk about.
I’m as messed up as any man by the prevailing image of manhood and what women seek in men. My knowledge about pleasing a woman sexually was confined to guy talk and XXX movies. It has caused me serious harm.
I came into fiction with the advice to write the story I wanted to hear, the way I wanted to hear it. That’s what I’m trying to do. I am targeting a male audience, who like me, have grown up with distorted notions of manhood and what it takes to win and please a woman. I am trying to show, through stories, that you don’t have to be rich, famous, distant, abusive or even sexually polished to make it with women. My male characters are typically ordinary guys who are genuine, but often a bit clueless about sex. I have a lot of fun writing about them because I’m really writing about my own foibles. (Oh there’s a surprise!)
I dislike the terms we use to describe ourselves as writers of erotica, primarily the terms, ‘smut’, ‘porn’ and ‘stroke’ . I like to say I write stories about human sexuality from a male perspective, where an ordinary guy struggles with the conflict between love and lust, where lust is stronger. Through my stories, I want men to know that an ordinary guy can find true love. You just have to be genuine, and if you’ll open your heart, you’ll find a woman who will teach you what you need to know to please her sexually. That’s my story, but I had it wrong for most of my life. My stories are deliberately short. Like many men, I have the attention span of a fly.
I led men’s spiritual development groups for years and I can tell you men’s hearts ache for the blessing of their fathers and the appreciation of their wives. Often, they don’t get either, and they don’t know how to deal with it. Stories is how we learn about what we can’t articulate. What is the bible if not stories about how to navigate the journey though life?
I believe our brains are hard wired to acquire, retain and transmit knowledge through the power of story. I am hoping though stories, I might lead other men on to the path of sexual healing I have found. My story like all of ours is a works in progress.
Thanks for taking some time with me today. If you have questions or comments, please feel free to post them here.
PUBLISHER: Fireborn Publishing
RELEASE DATE: April 17, 2015
GENRE: Contemporary, Erotica
TAGS: Happy Ending, May/December
HEAT LEVEL– 3 Flames
CATEGORY: Short Story/Flash Fiction/Novelette
LENGTH: 69 pages
Twenty-something, sexually frustrated plumber, Will Last, is fascinated by an attractive age 40+ woman he sees in the plumbing fixtures isle of a big box store. When he casually strolls her way she strikes up a conversation and begs him to do some emergency plumbing repairs for her.
Mitzi Callahan soon has Will wrapped around her little finger. After showing her a plumbers trick for a quick repair, Mitzi reveals herself as a sex trainer and returns the favor by showing Will a trick or two in the bedroom.
Mitzi opens his world to the enchantment of older women and introduces him to one of her students, Lucy Park. Sparks fly between Will and Lucy while dancing at the club where they meet, but they must reach out across age and cultural barriers to find the romantic connection they both seek.
Spencer Dryden is a new writer, but an old guy on the threshold of draining any reserves left in Medicare and Social Security.
In real life he is a handyman, an at-home dad, inventor and web videographer living a quiet life in the frozen tundra of Minnesota (USA).
Like all writers he has a cat but they don’t get along well. He can be found at the usual writer hangouts:
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