January 12th, 2009

Having recently called it quits on my cybersex column and blog, I’ve been thinking about new ways to present adult chat transcripts to the skeptical world. I’ve also been thinking about how many friends — admittedly, most of them male — have confided that they find my transcripts with Dr. S. intensely arousing. All that gets me wondering: why don’t more people publish cybersex, which is essentially an act of collaborative writing, as erotica? As I see it, it would come with a number of benefits:

1) Because the writing process is shared, the onus of infusing a text with passion doesn’t fall on one author. The sexual interplay that occurs between two partners becomes part of the story.

2) Cybersex erotica, while less readable in format that a traditional story, has the bonus appeal of voyeurism. It lets you watch, retrospectively, as a scene unfolds between two people.

3) Quality transcripts, when shared with a wider audience, have the potential to change the way people think about cybersex. Most people I come in contact with still think of it as juvenile and shoddy — a quick online grope in the dark. Get two quality writers together though, each with active fantasy lives, and the truth quickly comes out.

My question is, would you read cybersex erotica? The trouble I see, besides getting people to believe in its potential, is that my transcripts tend to be pretty hardcore (meaning, stereotypically, they’d appeal to men), while the typical reader base for erotica is largely female.

Also, what would be the best format for this kind of publishing? An online compendium of encounters would keep true to the medium, be highly accessible, and allow multiple people to contribute. Print, on the other hand, would do interesting things to solidify and validate the online writing experience. While you ponder, a few examples for your reading pleasure:

Transcript: Open office hours with Dr. S.
Transcript: Halloween cybersex with Dr. S.
Transcript: A meeting in the library with Dr. S.

Tags: Blog

14 Responses to “Reading cybersex as erotica”

  1. Punning Pundit Says:

    While you’re right that Cyber does give that voyeuristic charge, reading someone else’s sessions misses much of the “story” element that I rather like about good erotica.

    So: I’m sure you’ll find an audience for your transcripts (you have!), but I’d probably not read them…

  2. Anon Says:

    I don’t want to sound like a jerk, but if you’re interested in ‘publishing’ your erotica, you might work on making it actually legible or compelling first. There’s no reason why “cyber” (blech) can’t be at least as compelling as a harlequin novel, but come on. Be honest with yourself. Re-read your logs and ask yourself if they sound like anything more than a couple of horny teenagers one-hand cybering over AIM. Frankly, other than the saddest, sorriest dregs of humanity (or the one person in the world who doesn’t know you can get porn on the internet yet) I can’t think of a single person who would want to read through something like that. It has impact for you because it’s your stuff. That’s fine, but it’s not exactly mass market appeal.

    There are honest to goodness roleplaying communities out there where people play out sex scenes where responses are more than eight words, and aren’t surrounded by *s to denote actions. There, people actually write in complete sentences. Paragraphs, even! If I were looking to popularize cybersex erotica, I’d probably go there first.

    I’m sorry that I’m probably coming off as pretty dickish, but I think some self-reflection is warranted here. No one can tell you what you’re allowed to enjoy in the privacy of your own home, but when you start wanting to bring it out in public, claiming to be its new champion, that’s when shit’s gotta stop. I don’t really think ‘cybersex’ needs mainstream approval, and I CERTAINLY don’t think writing of the quality those logs suggests is the way to get it there anyway.

  3. Moo Says:

    Contrary to what Anon may suggest, it’s been pretty clear for a really long time that “intelligent discourse” isn’t usually what the masses are looking for, regardless of the subject. All you need to do is look at the type of programming on TV or visit the comments section at some of the more popular websites to see that there isn’t much intelligent thoughts out there.

    Cybering isn’t about creating a story in text that can be revised and edited. Expecting perfection from it is unrealistic. It is about the moment, what is happening now. And what is happening now isn’t always clean and well thought out. Also, you may have noticed, people don’t even speak in complete sentences, let alone think that way. With cybering being a dump of thoughts and desires coming from an as-it-happens type of scenario, it’s difficult to conceive of it being written well, like a novel or other story.

    Ultimately, whether you can get it published online or otherwise, will depend on how many people you can inspire to participate.

  4. 340mps Says:

    Leaving aside lazy stereotypes (“the masses”? Seriously?) and criticisms of your transcripts, it’s clear that there is a historically-proven market for romantic exchanges between couples: epistolary literature is a pedigreed genre and there’s no reason you can’t put a contemporary spin on it.

  5. Cybersexy Says:

    Bonnie, may I make a suggestion? Personally, when I have one of my own cybersex transcripts that I like, I edit it and put it into prose format. If I decide to read it again (and if it’s hot enough, I will), it becomes far more readable that way.

    For your purposes (publication on the internet), it would also help. By editing it, you remove things like typos and grammar errors, as well as being able to make the story flow more smoothly (what you assume while doing cybersex may NOT be what the reader assumes).

    Think of cybersex as a rough draft to a really hot story. ;)

  6. Cybersexy Says:

    P.S. If you’d like me to contribute to your transcript website, I will as long as you let me contribute the edited versions. ;)

  7. SusanC Says:

    I don’t think cybersex transcripts work very well as erotica. The main appeal is that it’s personal – it’s something that your partner, who knows you, has written specially for you – and that it’s real-time – it’s like playing a game where you have to write a film-script really, really, quickly. You wouldn’t get this from someone else’s transcript. It’d be like watching a video of someone else playing a video game, rather than playing it yourself.

  8. - Says:

    Bonnie,
    I admit to have read your transcripts with Dr. S and I have enjoyed them very much. I am a woman and I read erotica occasionally. I found your transcripts just as if not more arousing than erotica. Thank you for sharing them.

  9. VickShy Says:

    Hi I’m increadably interested in what you have going here as i have something similar going with a Cyberbuddy of my own and am curious as to why you have called it quits.

    I would love an email so we can discuss this further if you wouldnt mind its nice to find a like minded person

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  11. Griff Says:

    I have been publishing cybersex transcripts on a blog.

    I don’t know why it hasn’t caught on more. So far my audience is mainly people I chat with.

    It seems like publishing cybersex transcripts should catch on. But maybe they are significantly less interesting to people who weren’t participating. “You had to be there.”

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