Soon after the release of erotic anthology Licked, I chatted to the anthology’s editor Jillian Boyd. She asked me to talk about my story Wet Satin Plaything: one of seven stories featured in the anthology and my thoughts on the rather slippery subject of the anthology’s theme: oral sex.
Jillian: What would you say your story is about?
Adrea: My story Wet Satin Plaything started off as several scenes of hot oral sex and intense, somewhat kinky sex, where a generally non-dominant woman is driven to a point where she finds her Inner Dominatrix. It centred around a man and woman in relationship, the man is very into the act of cunnilingus, and gets off on all things associated with it – a woman’s sexual scent, lingerie, wetness, squirting. Seeing how many times he can get his lover to orgasm and assisting her to go deeply into that altered space of sexual pleasure.
…as I wrote those scenes, I realised something darker and more complex was trying to come out – an actual story where I wanted to explore the dynamics of something like addiction
But as I wrote those scenes, I realised something darker and more complex was trying to come out – an actual story where I wanted to explore the dynamics of something like addiction – addiction to sex with a certain lover. It’s not addiction in the textbook sense of the term, but it gets close. It clouds her judgement about the behaviour of the man and the healthiness of the relationship. It starts to change her behaviour and feelings about herself. Classic sex addiction is something only a small proportion of people experience, but a sexually compelling, yet emotionally dysfunctional relationship that we get caught in, and find really hard to disentangle ourselves from? I think many of us have been there.
She succumbs to it just like a need for a hit, and it feels impossible to leave the source of the hit, even though she questions his love and knows his behaviour is emotionally abusive. As time goes on, the high from the sex becomes more short-lived, and other problems start to crowd in on her. Just like a substance addiction. She realises she has to do something drastic to break the cycle, to free herself. And although the story is told from her perspective, it seems like he may have a kind of addiction too – to cunt, to being in control, to being needed sexually. I’m never quite inside his head – so these things are all possibilities!
J: What made you want to write a story for Licked?
A: It was one of those convenient synchronicities – I was drafting this story, and saw the submission call for stories that centred around the theme of oral sex. It made me realise a lot of my stories do feature oral sex scenes. Having the deadline definitely helped motivate me to get the story written, so I thank you for that.
J: My pleasure. What was the inspiration behind your story?
Apart from the theme of sex addiction, I wanted to explore how a woman might extricate herself from an emotionally abusive relationship; how she reclaims her power. And initially, I just kept seeing a scene in my head where a very assertive, somewhat controlling man, only lightly restrained, is psychologically subdued by a woman who knows him well enough sexually to appeal entirely to his particular ‘kinks’. She manages to subdue him so effectively that he doesn’t see what’s coming until he’s in a situation entirely unfamiliar and quite terrifying, with a woman he’s (supposedly) very familiar with.
I’ve always been fascinated by femme-fatale archetypes like Lady MacBeth.
I’ve always been fascinated by femme-fatale archetypes like Lady MacBeth.
Back when I was acting and directing in independent theatre, I created an entire theatre piece around the theme. Does every woman have this archetype inside them? I’m not sure, but I am sure if you are wounded by the masculine in some way early in your sexual development, a woman is more likely to have this aspect somewhere inside her. So, what kind of situation might bring it out? Well, here’s one in Wet Satin Plaything.
J: Well, as I told you when I accepted the story for the anthology, the opening sentence packs a fucking great punch that draws you in.
A: Thanks. Yes, that line came quite quickly – as soon as I knew I wanted to turn my scene in to a story.
J: When did you first become aware of oral sex being a thing people did?
A: Early – maybe too early! I think I would have been five or six when I first encountered a description of a guy getting a blow job. I was one of those precociously bright children with a very high reading age. I was voraciously reading everything I could, and I had a habit of randomly taking books from the top shelf of the family bookshelf and reading from them – whenever my Mum wasn’t around.
In this case it was one of those steamy paperbacks popular in the seventies – set in Hollywood, and about a male porn star called Toby – I even recall his name. Put it this way – a child is sexual from an early age. I felt guilty as hell, but I scoured those pages looking for the “rude” scenes – and let me tell you, I was well rewarded in that book! I remember being both fascinated and kind of horrified. I knew what a penis was, but it was for peeing, so the fact that women were described putting one (well, several) in their mouths was pretty shocking for me.
I don’t think I realised that such an act existed in regards to women until much later – maybe when I was 13 or 14. Depictions of it, even in illicit media I might have stumbled upon, wasn’t as common as that of fellatio back then – and my Mum, surprisingly enough, didn’t include it in her “how babies are made” talk when I was around eight.
Pheromones and sexual instinct, the archaic programming in our limbic brain to want to get close, and closer, to push ourselves up against and into someone we are attracted to when we smell the scent of their arousal, their sexual juices. It can over-ride our more refined taste-buds. We salivate over what isn’t clearly sweet or salty or bitter, but a little of everything.
J: What’s the best oral sex scene you’ve ever read / seen (in any form of prose or film, not just erotica or pornography)?
A: From memory, I think the French cinema classic Betty Blue (the Director’s cut) has at least one hot, intense scene where Beatrice Dalle’s character Betty is being treated to some incredible cunnilingus by her lover Zorg. What I love about this film is how apparent it is that Betty adores sex, without any shame, and gives herself to it with utter abandon. Diary of a Nymphomaniac, a Spanish film is up there too. And so many of the stories from Nin’s Delta of Venus depict oral sex, in all its variations and hues so evocatively.
A: Do you think oral sex, in all its forms, gets fair coverage in the media? Or do you feel it’s still something that people need to reconsider their attitudes about?
A: I don’t think there are anywhere near enough depictions of women being given oral pleasure in M+ rated cinema. And why? Because it’s mostly about a woman’s pleasure? It frustrates the feminist in me. Oral sex is pretty common as a sexual activity these days in bedrooms across the globe. Why not depict it more often as part of sex scenes in films?
I don’t think there are anywhere near enough depictions of women being given oral pleasure in M+ rated cinema. And why? Because it’s mostly about a woman’s pleasure?
I think it’s hard these days to just say “the media” and for everyone in the conversation to be on the same page. Social media, blogs, and being able to personalize what information we receive and tune into has changed the conception of mainstream media considerably. For example, I’ve not read a “women’s magazine” in at least 15 years that I myself have bought. Oral sex, giving and receiving for both men and women, is definitely getting more positive and informed coverage in alternative media, and amongst sex-positive communities. There are many fantastic sexuality and relating educators, such as Barbara Carrellas, Cyndi Darnell, David Deida – putting inspired and informative articles, workshops and seminars out about overcoming shame, body issues, and embracing our genitals as pleasure centres beyond just conventional penetrative sex. If a man wants good information on how to orally pleasure a woman, all he has to do is Google it, to be inundated with an outpouring of information, and vice versa.
The uptake and spread of schools of thought around sexuality, such as Tantra, and the fact it has very positive attitudes towards oral sex, is also contributing to increasing shifts around previously-held perceptions of it in the dominant culture. On the whole, yes, I think there is more openness and acceptance of oral sex. Hopefully sales for Licked will reflect this!
J: Do you like incorporating variations of the act into your stories? Or was it something you wanted to try specifically for this anthology?
A: I love incorporating oral sex into my stories. There’s very few without at least one scene, imagined or actual. The first piece I ever wrote, which was immediately accepted for publication, described oral sex in very lush language – lots of ocean metaphors. The second piece I published called Feast, was all about cunnilingus. I’m a writer who likes to draw my readers in by focusing on the sensory aspects of sex, and oral sex intensely involves every sense; touch, taste, sight, smell, even hearing if you count the sounds of pleasure, but also of juices slick against tongues, against skin. In my story the female MC recalls the first sighting of her boyfriends’ cock, and how its physical presence compels her then and there to take in into her mouth.
I’m a writer who likes to draw my readers in by focusing on the sensory aspects of sex, and oral sex intensely involves every sense; touch, taste, sight, smell, even hearing if you count the sounds of pleasure, but also of juices slick against tongues, against skin.
It’s also something about the taboo aspect, I think, that draws me back to it. Aside from the feelings of guilt that Catholicism and other religious doctrines impose upon any sexual activity that is solely or mainly for pleasure itself, for me it’s more a delving into the taboo; it’s the mouth to genitals thing, isn’t it? Where we eat meeting where we excrete? My five-year-old self instinctively comprehended the taboo-ness of that. It’s what we see dogs do. It reminds us that we too are animals, driven by instinct and scent, and sometimes we struggle to accept that part of our humanity – the animal part.
Calling it “oral sex” also totally disguises the part our olfactory senses play. Pheromones and sexual instinct, the archaic programming in our limbic brain to want to get close, and closer, to push ourselves up against and into someone we are attracted to when we smell the scent of their arousal, their sexual juices. It can over-ride our more refined taste-buds. We salivate over what isn’t clearly sweet or salty or bitter, but a little of everything. Combined with texture and taste, and the more elevated desire to give pleasure, or even the need to debase ourselves (depending on one’s attitudes to oral sex) that’s a powerful cocktail. In Plaything, I really wanted to explore the power of scent in oral sex. How it can act as a kind of binding spell.
J: If you could ask your main character one question, what would it be?
A: “Now you have found your Inner Dominatrix / Femme Fatale, what will you do with her?
(That question would be met by gleeful, slightly disturbing laughter from my character.)
J: What’s your favourite euphemism for oral sex, if you have one?
A: Hmmm … I once had a guy ask me if he could ‘worship at my temple’. We’d met, very briefly, at a Tantra workshop. Though the phrase was used slightly self-consciously, he wasn’t self-conscious at all when it came to the actual worshipping! Not my favourite euphemism, though. I like the simplicity of “going down”. It’s easy to put in dialogue if you need to.
I also am rather a fan of the word cunnilingus – etymologically it’s so rich – with associations derived from the prefix Cunnus – meaning vulva (or cunt), but also linked to words meaning writing and knowledge in different cultures. Cunning, connotation, ken… The suffix lingus, from lingere which means “to lick”, but it also suggests the word for one who studies language – linguist. It’s fascinating to deconstruct and put back together, inviting primal associations: cunt-tongue, or a meeting of feminine knowledge and language.
And metaphorically “going down” connotes the Underworld: descending beneath. Basements, underwater caves, places of darkness and mystery… Venturing into the unknown, we yearn for a little bit of danger, a little bit of adventure, but sometimes also treasure, and discovery.
…metaphorically “going down” connotes the Underworld: descending beneath. Basements, underwater caves, places of darkness and mystery… Venturing into the unknown, we yearn for a little bit of danger, a little bit of adventure, but sometimes also treasure, and discovery.
For a sneak preview of Wet Satin Plaything , come with me.
You can read Wet Satin Plaything and get your own copy of Licked via Amazon or All-Romance Books. Links below: