The Problem with Praise

Today’s guest blog post is by C.J. Forrest, a fellow British erotica author with an equally (if not more so) filthy mind. I’m telling you, we breed ‘em dirty over here!

The problem with praise

Erotica has one really big advantage over every other form of writing. Whilst you can love a thriller, or be under whelmed by the latest Booker prize winner, it’s all somewhat relative. It’s all experiential, and it can be very difficult to analyse and assess that. Yes it made me want to set fire to things, but then again I did finish it.

It’s not really a pass/fail thing.

Unless you’re talking about erotica.

I once heard a description of the wonderful Anaïs Nin’s work as “good, but not quite wankable.” And that’s where the gauntlet lands: is the stuff that has been written – plot and character and prose aside – wankable?

I’ve read things that, really, truly aren’t. Short stories where, when it comes to the crucial scenes, the writer seems to have written it with their eyes closed and tried to get it over and done with as quickly as possible. I mean, isn’t that what real life sex is for?


By the same token I’ve read pieces where I never get to the end, no matter how many attempts I’ve made. There are books in my collection that I’ve pored over dozens of times but would be unable to even guess what happened after the first few chapters.

It’s important stuff, and for the discerning erotica reader it’s the difference between what feels like a waste of time, and something to be kept and cherished for years to come.

But nobody talks about it.

There’s no section on Newsnight Review for erotica, no special column in the Metro dedicated to this weeks best short erotic releases.


Why, when it’s the qualifying factor in a story is it so difficult to say? Why is it so difficult to even admit that we masturbate to written words?

I mean, by most measures the person who masturbates to erotica should be held in higher regard than the ones who just look at X-Videos right? It’s ethically sourced, fair trade, and usually your money goes to struggling individuals trying to make a living. I can read erotica and take the moral high ground… roughlyfrom behind

I think part of the problem comes from the fact that we’re too polite as a society. Many people (myself included) go for the principle that you shouldn’t say something behind someone’s back that you wouldn’t say to their face.

And therein lies the problem.

You see whilst I could walk up to Dan Brown and tell him his books are clichéd pulp of the lowest order, if I walked up to someone who writes erotica and tell them I’ve wanked over something they’ve written it’s at best a little creepy, at worst sexually aggressive.

Which is a shame because there are some brilliant writers out there who I wish I could tell, in the best and most positive way possible, I love your writing, it’s really wankable.

About the Author

Charlie is a London-based writer of erotica and erotic romance. He specialises in writing stories about BDSM, bondage, humiliation, submission and public sex.

He tries to bring a flavour of the British countryside into everything he writes, although any description of sunny weather or functioning public transport are pure works of fiction.

In his free time he pursues the twin impossible goals of the perfect cup of tea and trying to get the cat to stop sitting on his laptop and do something about the mice.

Charlie’s website:

Find Charlie’s books on Amazon:

Follow on Twitter:

One Comment:

  1. And this is where the internet makes things just that little bit easier. I would probably freak out if someone came up to me in real life and told me they’d wanked to something I’d written, but I’ve had more than a few comments online from unabashed readers saying just that, and it’s absolutely fine. Fantastic, in fact, because I know I’ve done my job ;)

Leave a Reply to vamp Cancel reply