Erotic literature is a great way to explore your sexual desires, whether you’re going solo or you’re with a partner. There are a number of advantages to erotic literature over classic video pornography, and it can unlock levels of desire you never knew you had!
What is erotic literature?
Erotic literature takes a few forms. All of them feature exciting written descriptions of sexual encounters.
Novels with erotic themes. These are novels or stories which feature detailed and graphic depictions of sexual activity, but that’s not the only thing that happens. A classic example is Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence, which was considered so ‘obscene’ at the time of publishing that it was banned in several countries. While the sex scenes are extremely graphic (especially for the period), there are also several other plots running through the novel.
Erotic romance novels. These are novels or stories that place romantic and sexual encounters at the centre of the plot. Gena Showalter is a bestselling author in this category.
Sex guides. These are more practical works of literature that give the reader tips and techniques to improve their sex life. The most famous example is the Kama Sutra. In these books, written descriptions of sexual techniques are often accompanied by illustrations.
Why read erotic books?
There are lots of benefits to reading erotica. It’s suggested that women in particular find this form of erotica the most stimulating because women’s sexual desires tend to be more narrative-driven, and more focused on relationships and personalities. But that’s not to say this genre can’t be enjoyed by men too. And if you’re in a couple, it can be fun to read together!
You can leave something to the imagination
Let’s face it, there’s nothing subtle about video pornography. It lays everything out for you to see. Which can be fun to watch, but also removes all of the mystery. By contrast, written porn leaves a lot to the imagination. No matter how graphic the encounter, there is still plenty of room for the reader to put their own spin on it. You control how the protagonists look in your mind, what they sound like when they whisper dirty nothings into each other’s ears, how much is revealed and concealed when they get down to action, and so on. Your imagination can be a powerful turn-on given the right level of stimulation.
You can take it at your own pace
One of the greatest ways to achieve a mindblowing orgasm is to regulate the pace at which you go - pausing, slowing, teasing, then speeding up to reach climax. If you’re watching video porn, you kind of have to go at the pace of the video - you can pause it, sure, but that kills the mood - and once it’s over, it’s over. With a book, you can read a bit, set it down while you play, read a bit more, re-read the most exciting passages - all without ruining the moment. Dip in and out as much as you like to get the most out of the experience.
You can do it in public
The reading part, that is! You can take a book or e-reader anywhere. Enjoy in the library, in the coffee shop, waiting for a friend, and just generally when you have time to kill. It’s much more enjoyable than scrolling through social media, trust me. Plus it’s good for your brain!
There’s a community of fans
Chances are, if you watch and enjoy video pornography, you don’t tell many people about it. It’s a secret thing, and perhaps something you feel embarrassed about (although you shouldn’t!). But erotic literature is a genre that invites open discussion. There are hundreds of internet forums where people discuss their top sexy reads, swap recommendations and chat about their favourite characters. The community is welcoming and friendly, and while there are trolls everywhere, you’re much more likely to meet genuine people who just want to talk about books. Check out the Lush Stories forum as a starting point. Who knows, you might meet someone special!
Erotic literature is great for gals
I touched on this earlier, but it’s worth talking about more. Erotic literature is great for women, partly because the pacing of it is so much better suited to most women’s sexual process. Women tend to need some form of stimulation to get aroused, and can take a while to reach full arousal. They also tend to take longer to orgasm than men, and can experience multiple orgasms over longer periods of time. The pace of an erotic story or novel fits this perfectly, building up gradually to the climax and usually featuring multiple climax moments.
In addition to this, erotic fiction tends to portray women in a more realistic way. The women we see in porn are so idealised that this can be a turn-off to many women (porn is mostly aimed at a male audience, after all). Also, a female character in a porn movie is usually objectified to some degree - the whole thing is from the male perspective. In erotic literature, the stories are often told from a female character’s point of view, and portray characters that more closely resemble ‘real women’. Don’t get me wrong, there are still a lot of heaving bosoms and fluttering eyelashes, but overall the experience is much more welcoming to the female reader.
Getting into the story can be a huge turn-on
There are little to no plots or character development in video porn - it’s usually just straight to the action. In erotic books, part of the enjoyment comes from getting to know the characters and getting involved in their relationships. Maybe there’s a forbidden love story, with secret meetings and stolen glances - maybe there’s an action-packed space battle that makes the survivors really horny - all of these narrative elements add to the reader’s enjoyment of the sexual encounters.
It can make you better at sex
Erotic guides, in particular, are a great way to learn more about sex and develop your techniques. Even the fictional books offer plenty of tips for spicing up your love life. Books like the instructional The Joy of Sex transformed people’s sex lives back in the 1970s. It challenged the idea that sex was primarly for male pleasure, and that missionary was the only position. It’s no coincidence that the book spent eleven weeks at the top of the New York Times bestseller list.
Books like She Comes First: The Thinking Man’s Guide to Pleasuring a Woman are packed with fascinating facts that will genuinely make a difference to your lovemaking. These books are a much better way to learn about your own sexual desires and those of people you partner with than the somewhat unrealistic representation of sex depicted in porn movies. Also, you can go back to them again and again to top up your knowledge and learn new things.
What’s the best way to enjoy erotic literature?
There’s no right or wrong way to enjoy erotic literature, that’s the beauty of it. You can read it casually, just to pass the time. You can read it alone to turn yourself on, and continue reading while masturbating. You can read it together with a partner to turn each other on. You and your partner can recreate scenes from the book you’re reading.
You can even write your own erotic fiction. There are plenty of sites where writers can publish their work for free, from fan fiction to original creative works. There are plenty of tips and guides out there for writing your own work of sexy fiction. If you’re not feeling super confident, why not team up with a friend or partner to create something stimulating?
I’m sold, but where can I find erotic books to read?
You might be surprised how easy it is to get hold of erotic literature. For a start, just try searching for ‘erotic fiction’ on Amazon. If you’d prefer to be led by reviews, this guide from Esquire might help steer you in the right direction.
If you’d rather try before you buy, there are plenty of free resources on the internet. If you’re worried about privacy, use a private browser window. Check out Refinery29’s list of free erotica websites.
Not in the mood for browsing? Want to dive straight in? Cosmopolitan are featuring a full-length story, ‘A Fresh Start’ by Alicia Fox, on their website, available for free.
We stock a wide range of erotic guides and books here, too. Here are my personal recommendations.
Tantric Orgasm for Women - £12.49 - Tantric Orgasm for Women offers women a fresh look at the ecstatic bliss possible within their bodies, using knowledge and approaches from the sensually cultivated traditions of the East. With this in-depth book, you can explore Tantra from the female point of view with the pioneer of the Slow Sex Movement, Diana Richardson.
She Comes First: The Thinking Man's Guide to Pleasuring a Woman - £9.99 - Did you know that the clitoris has 8000 nerve endings, twice as many as the penis? Now that we’ve got your attention… She Comes First – The Thinking Man’s Guide to Pleasuring a Woman is an entire book written strictly for the pleasure of women by a man which includes everything you've wondered about the female orgasm and how to make it happen.
Open Her: Activate 7 Masculine Powers to Arouse Your Woman's Love & Desire - £10.39 - Looking to engage with your partner on a deeper, more intimate level? Open Her: Activate 7 Masculine Powers to Arouse Your Woman's Love & Desire will inspire a man to embrace his masculinity and come to understand the power it holds to open a woman to ever-deepening states of pleasure and love.
Kama Sutra: A Position a Day - £11.49 - Enjoy 365 days of pure pleasure with Kama Sutra: A Position A Day – a daily calendar of passionate positions to ignite the passion. This handy erotic guide is ideal as a gift for sophisticated lovers, or as a tantalising treat for yourself and your sex partner to enjoy a full year of pleasure.
Urban Tantra: Sacred Sex for the Twenty-First Century - £14.49 - Urban Tantra: Sacred Sex for the Twenty-First Century is the perfect beginner's guide for those who are interested in Tantra. You’ll learn all about sexual energy – what it is and what to do with it as you wake up your body, calm your mind and free your spirit. You’ll learn how to use sex magic to relax and relieve stress and so much more.
I’d love to hear about your literary adventures, so don’t forget to share your favourite reads with me. I hope you enjoy exploring the potential for sexual pleasure that lies between the covers of a book, and that delving into this great genre opens doors for you that were previously closed.
Lovingly, Victoria xoxo