Sexy Writing Humans

If you are a human reading this, there's a pretty good chance you have an interest in sex. Hell, even if you are a bot reading this you may have an interest in sex, what with advances in artificial intelligence and all, but for now I am considering the humans. I don't have reason to believe readers of this blog are somehow more libidinous than others. I simply realize the overwhelming majority of us humans look at sex with something between mild interest and blazing enthusiasm. To say that sex sells is a cliché, of course, but it's an encouraging cliché.

One of the challenges to writing about sex is that we tend to not talk about the sex we would like to read about, leaving a vacuum of the imagination. My experience has been that we all either hope or fear everyone fantasizes like we do, but that is little guidance to the aspiring writer.

Into this information void, Mark Allen Thornton has stepped up to slip the data into whatever your favorite sexual allusion may be. The intrepid Thornton applied some fancy analytics (umm, not necessarily SFW) to figure out who is writing what kind of stories on a large online erotica site (most definitely NSFW).

For a lot of reasons, Mr. Thornton's results may not be generalizable (he had a big sample, but only from a single place on the interwebs), may not be indicative of what people want to read (he was limited to examining what people wrote), and may not even be indicative of who is doing the writing (would you believe that some people lie online?). Even more importantly, just because something is popular doesn't mean every author should try to write it--many sub-genres identified defy even my ample imagination.

All disclaimers acknowledged, though, Mr. Thornton's analysis is the best view of the demographic and topical intersection of sex and literature available. If you aren't at work or sitting next to your grandmother, give it a read.

Heck, your grandmother is probably interested in the study, too; you would just will feel weird reading it beside her.