As a believer in the positive benefits of watching ethical porn with a partner, I feel like we should also keep our imaginations lubed, alive and ready for action. Enter the world of written erotica – stories to tease, arouse and create shared intimate experiences. Our lives are dominated by the fast consumption of well…just about everything. Why not slow it down with your partner and get back to the beauty of the written word?
Let’s get lit with sexy literature…
Erotica – what are we reading?
Most people go straight to the 50 Shades series, but erotica has been alive and well way before Christian Gray hit the bestseller list. Like, loooooooong before. Written around 2CE in India, most agree Kama Sutra is OG erotica. More than just a collection of sex positions, the Kama Sutra explores pleasure, relationships, love and intimacy. Fast forward to more modern times, and we have classics such as Lady Chatterly’s Lover and the undeniable tour de force of Anais Nin.
Written erotica can span the downright dirty details of sexual forays to the more subtle stylings of sensual encounters. From confessionals to fully developed narratives, you can find whatever tickles your fancy. But what about actually reading erotica ALOUD with a partner? Why, you might ask? That sounds so…old or boring or dated. Stay with me…
Benefits of reading erotica together
Body and Mind Friendly – Written erotica can offer a more nuanced experience with lower ‘stakes’ than visual porn. By this I mean there’s less of a set up to compare our physical bodies and performance with the characters because we can’t actually see them. Yet, erotica can be VERY explicit to arouse and guide us into desire, lust, romance, kink…whatever the flavor of pleasure. Again – love me some ethical porn, but written erotica offers an alternative where partners might feel a little less intimidated or self-conscious. Could be great gateway into watching porn together, or just another way to turn on.
Intimacy! Intimacy! Intimacy! – One of my fave images is this black and white photo of a woman in a bubble bath with her partner sitting nearby and reading to her. She’s slightly leaning towards him, as he leans in with the opened book. Shall I say more? Okay, I will then. Reading to one another pretty much relies on active listening, slowing down, throwing technology to the side (unless of course, you’re reading from your phone) and creating space together with a third element – the power of storytelling. You can giggle, sigh, talk, respond or even discuss the sex, positions, characters and so on. Together.
Expanding Sexual Repertoire – Sometimes you don’t know you crave something until it’s served to you on a golden dish. Same for your partner. Maybe as they read a particular scene out loud, you notice their voice changes, or perhaps your breath quickens. Erotica can be as wild as you want, yet totally safe to dip your proverbial toe into some kinky, wacky, naughty ass stuff.
Foreplay on Fire – Wonderful tool for getting in the mood. Pro tip: Explore reading erotica to each other out of the bedroom. Elevate a picnic at the park, roadtrip, bath time or simply on the couch. The mere act of creating erotic spaces outside the usual can create a sense of adventure and excitement.
And of course, the toys! Using the remote or We-Vibe app, let the partner being read to take control of sensations. Perfect for this being We-Vibe’s Moxie, their wearable panty vibrator. Imagine trying to read sexy scenes whilst your partner serves up delicious sensations…
Erotica – Where are we reading it?
Literotica: A popular online platform with an extensive collection of user-submitted erotic stories, covering a wide range of themes and genres.
Refinery29: Their guide offers short erotic stories written by different authors to choose from for your mood and taste.
Cleis Press: A renowned publisher specializing in erotic fiction and non-fiction, offering a selection of high-quality books that cater to diverse tastes.
Goodreads: An online community of book lovers where you can find curated lists and recommendations for erotic literature, as well as connect with fellow readers.
I also put together a list of erotic novels and short story collections in this article celebrating an embodied summer.
Now get to it! Here’s to an erotic summer…