January 21, 2010

Crowdsourced Sex: Coming & Crying

Books, Culture, web No Comments

“It’s not the business of all sex writers everywhere to solve the world’s sex problems.”

Written by tech and sex writer and sex educator Melissa Gira Grant, this statement would become the premise of the book Coming & Crying: real stories about sex from the other side of the bed. Using crowdsourcing to fill the book with real stories, Grant and Meaghan O’Connell recently completed the first round of pledges to have it published.

(In fact, demand is so huge, they doubled the amount of money they initially set as a goal in the first three days.)

Unsurprising, especially once you read Grant’s development on the original premise:

Sex writing within the limited scope of “erotica” has been unfairly burdened with rehabilitating sex in public. We as writers have to turn in work that exalts sex, always treats sex like the hottest, the most revelatory thing two (or however many more the CFS required) bodies can do together.

Sex within “real” “literature” doesn’t fare much better, where even if only a very tiny group of writers insist we write in a “post-sex” world, the rest are left making sense of how to not just fade-to-black on fucking.

Or worse than all of that and certainly within that, sex is never treated as a site of inquiry in its own right. Sex stands in for “freedom” or “cultural disintegration” or “womanhood” or whatever. Sex is asked to be too much, and “sex writers” are expected to answer to all of it. Oh, and make it really hot, too.

For some reason, the internet gives sex writing the room to breathe and be more than someone else’s platform to sell a thing or be a thing, anything but what it is: storytelling from a raw and flushed and necessary place. Sex, as commercialized and stupid as it gets online, is also still ours. The continuous partial disclosure of blogging (as in, you would never maybe say this much if you had to do it all at once) makes writing sex even more human, gives us nigh infinite space to say what needs to be said and not have to worry about how well it will do on a rack at the airport.

If we’re successful, we’ll have a beautiful, crazy, lovely book and before it even hits our shelves, a whole lot of people will have let us know how much they want that, too.

Watch the book trailer:

Now go get a copy.

Image from Coming & Crying. Information via Melissa Gira Grant.

AV Flox

Your humble editrix-in-command.

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Sex and the 405 is what your newspaper would look like if it had a sex section.

Here you’ll find news about the latest research being conducted to figure out what drives desire, passion, and other sex habits; reviews of sex toys, porn and other sexy things; coverage of the latest sex-related news that have our mainstream media's panties up in a bunch; human interest pieces about sex and desire; interviews with people who love sex, or hate sex, or work in sex, or work to enable you to have better sex; opinion pieces that relate to sex and society; and the sex-related side of celebrity gossip. More...