Two women are spicing up World Book Day by encouraging you to get up close and personal with a genre of literature recently over-shadowed by a ‘certain book that shall remain nameless’.
Award-winning erotica authoress Victoria Blisse and Emily Dubberly, who founded the women’s sex website Cliterati, are hosting a Facebook party to get people and erotica writers talking (dirty) from 7pm tonight.
The ladies have organised loads of saucy giveaways, from expensive sex toys to a trip to the Brighton Fetish Weekend, and will be launching an anthology of 22 short stories, by different authors, to get you hot under the collar titled An Intimate Education.
All profits from the sale of the anthology will be going to Brook, a charity providing sexual health services and education to young people across the country, in the hopes it will ‘have a real positive effect for lots of different people, not just the authors and readers involved’.
— Madeline Moore (@MsMadelineMoore) March 3, 2015
Victoria, originally from Stockport, told MM: “Emily thought it would be a good idea to focus in on erotica because, well, a certain book that shall remain nameless – everybody is focused on that certain book and that certain trilogy, at the moment.
“Everything else is sort of forgotten and pushed to the side, unfortunately, But there’s a whole genre out there full of brilliant books and Emily and I wanted to celebrate that.
“There’ll be a chat and there’ll be general mayhem going on, but it’ll all be fun! I’ve done a Facebook party before and it’s absolutely manic but it’s great fun and it’s really interactive.”
The wife, mum and editor of several Bigger Briefs collections thinks events like the upcoming Erotic World Book Day Party are important because they get people talking openly about sex and realising they’re not weird for having fantasies and desires.
It is for this same reason Victoria feels erotica itself is a genre to be taken seriously rather than ‘taken the mickey out of’.
I HAD A DREAM: Victoria’s career started when her husband encouraged her to write down her sexy dream (© David Woolfall, with thanks)
“I think erotica or sex is an integral part of everybody and it’s an integral part which is pushed away, especially in Britain with the ‘no sex please, we’re British’ and everybody’s just left to their own devices. Nobody knows whether you just can’t speak about it,” she said.
“There are issues there from a health point of view because everyone’s just so uptight about it but also from an emotional and spiritual point of view.
“It is very important for people’s wellbeing, even if we don’t talk about it. Erotica brings a way for people to access their sexuality, their fantasies, their dreams – in that way that they can read it on a page.
“It makes it slightly less scary sometimes to read it and think, ‘Oh somebody else thinks like that too’. It’s a good way to bring people together and make them realise that they’re not on their own and they’re not weird.”
Victoria said that the party wasn’t to be taken as a joke and that erotica is a ‘serious’ genre.
— Tabitha Rayne (@TabithaErotica) March 5, 2015
“This party is all about sex positivity and talking about sex and making them acceptable parts of our everyday lives. For one, it’s fun, so why not?,” she said.
“Let’s enjoy and let’s celebrate this and let’s actually not treat it like a bit of a joke, like the old Fifty Shades.
“A lot of people do just take the mickey out of us all the time but let’s show that it’s a real serious genre, but also let’s embrace the fact that everybody’s got their own sexuality and that’s fine. Let’s celebrate it all.”
So how did Victoria, who also owns the company Smut UK with her husband, get into the erotica industry?
“Well, this is the point where I blame my husband, I always blame him. This is also the less known ‘I had a dream’ speech,” she said.
“I had a dream… it was a sexy dream and I didn’t know what to do with it so my husband suggested I write it down, which I did, and then he suggested I publish it on a website called erotica.com.
“It all went from there really. People really liked my writing and I discovered that I really enjoyed it.”
In 2006, Victoria had her first story published in an ebook and since then has released some 60 short stories and novellas so she’s ‘been around the block fiction-wise’.
The couple’s company Smut UK produces various anthologies and runs ‘physical’ events – they’re even hoping to bring one to Manchester in October.
— She Who Reads #EWBD (@OleanderPlume) March 5, 2015
The Manchester United fan said: “They’re author and reader get-together. They’re very social with workshops and erotica tombola that everybody loves to have a go on because you never quite know what you might win!
“And there’s various different stalls and things and it’s just a really relaxed and laid back day for people to get together and talk about erotica and books and ready and not have people look at you a bit weird, because that’s what happens sometimes.
“So that’s how I’ve come to get involved with Erotic World Book Day as well because Emily knows me via my writing and through Smut UK and because through that we did our own Facebook party a while back, which she joined in with and really enjoyed.”
While Erotic World Book Day is a brand new idea from Emily and Victoria they hope to turn the event into an annual one from here on out.
Victoria added: “We will hopefully have Erotic World Book Day every year on the same date.
We are looking forward to doing more events w3ith it in the future so that’s something to look out for!”
To mingle with all the other sexy people at Erotic World Book Day Party, starting at 7pm, click here.
— Tabitha Rayne (@TabithaErotica) February 25, 2015
Main image courtesy of Guy Jaques, with thanks.