Flutterby™! : Lofting

Next unread comment / Catchup all unread comments User Account Info | Logout | XML/Pilot/etc versions | Long version (with comments) | Weblog archives | Site Map | | Browse Topics


2002-10-03 17:16:25+00 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

Finished Alma Marceau's Lofting[Wiki] on the subway this morning. The book starts out extremely strong, as a set of chat room transcripts, but once it started getting into the sex I lost the strong sense of characterization that it opened with. As the story progressed it certainly had some hot writing, but I felt that the sex overshadowed the stories and the characters, so that by the end I was simply being presented with a series of events, rather than a sequence of further revelations.

[ related topics: Books Erotic ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-10-03 17:21:56+00 by: Diane Reese

So you're saying that if I want you to read my novella after NaNoWriMo next month, I should keep the sex from interfering too much with the characterizations, is that right? Help me with this: what, for you, keeps hot writing from overshadowing the rest of the story? Sounds as if that's easier said than done (which may be why more of us aren't good novelists to begin with...)

#Comment made: 2002-10-03 21:47:43+00 by: Dan Lyke

I think the sex should enhance the characterizations. It's been a while since I've read his stuff, but I think Jordan Shelbourne does a great job of making the sex integral to understanding the characters and the story. Even though he says he writes the sex last, if you dropped the sex scenes from those tales the characters wouldn't be as strongly realized, nor would the conflict of the story be as powerfully resolved.

And this is no easy feat, I think that as Mary Anne Mohanraj's work has become better at characterization it's less able as stroke material, but she manages to get a hell of a lot hinged on a woman showing her breasts; I don't see the story I wanted to use to illustrate this point online, but one she read at the last Perverts Put Out[Wiki] that I saw her at, and I can't do justice to it in summary, but the entirety of the sex was just a lowering of a towel as an acknowledgement of feelings, and that one bit of story left us all gasping for air.

In Lofting[Wiki] the first sex scene is kind of mechanical, and in the entire two or three page sequence we learn essentially one thing about the narrator. And to my mind the major conflicts of the story raised in the first two chapters, questions about one of the secondary characters, aren't even resolved in the final scene. It reads more like Fanny Hill than, say, Lady Chatterly's Lover.