Since the beginning of my sexual awakening (or when my high school boyfriend put his hands down my pants), I loved sex. I love having it, discussing it, learning about it, advocating for it, and the list goes on. It fascinates me. I wouldn’t say I reach any kind of nymphomaniac levels but my libido and sexual curiosity and enthusiasm are all pretty high.
Along with sex, my other interests are TV shows, movies, and books. There is a particular workplace sitcom that I adore and almost exclusively write fanfic about. The bridge between these interests is not a long one, and soon I was writing erotic fan fiction.
I don’t know how familiar you are with erotic fan fiction (think Fifty Shades of Grey except good, and starring your favorite fictional characters) or what it looks like or how it plays into your life. But from what I can tell, from the other fabulous writers and readers I know, it is kind of a private, secret thing. As for me, some of my friends know I write it. But no one in real life reads it or knows how much it means to me or how involved I am as much as my husband.
Yes, after (a little) personal deliberation, I told my husband that I was a fan fiction writer.
First, I told him I was doing it. Then, I asked him to read over one for typos and editing reasons (he’s also a writer) and then I had him do it for another, and then some more stories. He was my backup editor when my regular editors (or betas) were busy, or offline, and I was getting too antsy. After that, I didn’t mind him knowing just what I was writing — positions, trope-y circumstances, characters involved — and soon he was just as a part of the process as any of my online friends. We discussed plot devices I was having a hard time getting through, character POV struggles, canon gaps I needed to fill believably, how characters would say certain things, etc.
He was involved but I don’t think the switch in our sex life really happened until he read My Really Long Fic, which was around 75,000 words (to give you a point of reference, that is about as long as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone). This story was long, yes, but the plot, dumbed down of course, is basically that two characters from said workplace TV show were fuck buddies who fell in love, so there was lots of sex. Lots and lots of sex. Angry sex, vulnerable sex, “I don’t know if I like you” sex, “I think I do like you” sex, “I like you” sex, break up sex, “let’s get back together” sex, “I love you” sex… the list goes on and on. This was a huge for me and I owe a lot of thanks to this fic, and its readers and encouragers. But I also think handing it over to my husband to read changed something between us, too.
There are lots of big and small things that aided that shift, but here are the big four:
It took a lot of fucking guts to tell my husband I did this. It could have gone one of three ways. One: He could laugh at me and tease me endlessly about it. Two: He could ignore that I even said anything, and it would never be brought up again. But he went with the third option: Supporting and encouraging me. He was the cheerleader for me among a “fan base” of the faceless. There is something to be said for someone who loves you and them showing they love you unconditionally over and over again.
Trust lends itself beautifully to having a fantastic sex life. It doesn’t hurt all the non-sexy things in marriage either.
While I have a lot of sex, there are still things I write that I haven’t done. And after I handed over some sexy writing, it suddenly seemed safe and okay to try new things. Everyone knows after six plus years of sex with the same person, things can get routine (I would argue, though, never boring) so it was kind of interesting to see how things kind of shifted.
Suddenly, there was more talking during sex, there were new positions and longer minutes dedicated to the act in general. I am not saying anything literally jumped off the page for us (while I think role play sounds awesome, I just can’t get into it), but there was a change. I think we both were more aware of how sex makes us feel, how it can be shared, where hands can be placed and legs be thrown. It was freeing and it was like a want we never had to discuss because I wrote it, he read it, and we suddenly knew it would be worth a try.
3. Upswing in libido
This is pretty self explanatory. Four hours a day, I am basically reading and writing porn, and using memories and spank bank material to get words onto a page. I need a release, right? And after reading it, so does he. Once I shared this thing with him, we both suddenly needed to have a lot more sex.
And we do.
4. Stimulation (of the mind, pervert)
As a writer, you are more alert to the world around you. You need to study your surroundings so you can describe it later, you need to make note of how leather feels under your fingertips so you can explain it, you need to smell something gross so you can use words other than “disgusting.” This is also true of sex when you are writing a lot of steamy scenes.
This made me a much more alert sexual partner. I was studying where my hands felt the best, how friction felt, what happened in my body during climax. I asked my husband how it felt to get certain sexual favors done because I didn’t have a penis and sometimes I wrote from the point-of-view of a male and could use some help.
Sex wasn’t just a hot house of physical pleasure, it was also a time for me to become super-aware of myself. It made me a better sexual partner — hyper-aware of my partner’s reactions and breaths. And because I was more aware of what I liked — what motions made me feel the best, and exactly how I felt right before my orgasm was going to start to build — I could easily communicate my wants and needs to my husband. And as a special bonus, my mind was being stimulated with my body and I was very, very aware of how being loved made my body feel. Which goes to show, self love is liberating for the avid erotic fan fiction reader, as well (no partner required!).
Frankly, I think that is just bad ass.
I’m glad I threw caution to the wind and shared out what kind of things I was up to behind the computer screen, because my marriage is better because of it. Would we be fine without it? Would we still be together? Would we still be having great sex? A million times yes. But, I will take the extra boost anywhere I can get it.
And you can get it, too. For free! Happy reading.