I finished WOLF GIRL on Jan. 3, 2012, which was about three days later than I had hoped. Not too shabby, and the word count ain’t bad either. I expect about 20k of that to be cut out, but I’ll also flesh out some areas and make better word choices in 2012 summer edits, so it’ll probably even out at 90k or so.
I have some thoughts about writing WOLF GIRL, some of which I may have touched upon in the comment section of each NaNoUpdate.
This was probably one of the straightest things I’ve written in a while. I managed to get a infinitesimal bend in at a spontaneous orgy, but hardly enough to be called queer. It was weird, and I missed the variety that a bisexual character offers me in a story. However, forcing queerness into it would have just been awkward, so I just let the story go where it wanted, which I find it usually the best thing to do, unless you want a boulder of a writer’s block.
In FRIGID BITCH, I was always so very careful not to tread the non-con line. That’s not the kind of story I wanted it to be. Also, even though I enjoy reading certain kinds of non-con, writing it in such a way as to make it more erotica than horror makes me feel a bit like I’ve walked into an algae-coated bog that smells like shit. One of the arguments again non-con porn is that it perpetuates violence against women, perpetuates Rape Culture, like the existence of fantasy gives explicit permission to engage in the reality. I think that more than using rape for shock value, using non-consensual sex for erotica blurs the line between permissible and forbidden, because it’s inciting the feeling of excitement with the forbidden rather than the feeling of horror.
However, like I said, I enjoy reading certain kinds of porn that walk the line between dub con and non-con. I’ll read straight-up non-con in horror/thriller kinds of genres, but I get a different kind of thrill from it in erotica. I’ve always had a good grasp at the difference between fantasy and reality, but there are enough people who think that one leads to the other and enough people who do lead one to the other that I cannot be blind to what writing it, liking it, and encouraging others to read it and like it might mean.
As a writer, I am sometimes torn between the integrity of the story and my integrity as an ethical person. I’ve always been someone neurotic on the ethical level, but sometimes I wonder whether that makes me a better writer or not. When I’m writing, I try to let the story drive itself rather than burden it with what it might mean in real life. I view that nagging, neurotic little conscience as a self-censor, and since I don’t believe in censorship, I only hope that trying to address ethical dilemmas in respectful but candid ways makes up for what I leave in print.
Because WOLF GIRL is technically non-con. The plot isn’t original, although I hope it’s engaging; WOLF GIRL is one in the line of many female sex slaves in pages of erotica stories. The desire for someone to give in to your every sexual whim … it’s heady, and if you have the power to do it and none of the moral boundaries to stop yourself, then it’s not out of the realm of possibility that you’ll do it. You’ll get yourself someone to get your rocks off whenever and however you want. You might have a regular high-class prostitute on your schedule; you might blackmail someone; you might build a robot; or in the case of Erik Nye, make yourself a vulpine Bride of Frankenstein and make her love you and love sex.
That was my concession between horror and erotica. In order to make it acceptably erotic within the non-con fringe of the erotica genre, I made it so that Erik created her in such as way that she really, really, really loves sex. Does that make me like Erik, to titillate myself and an audience by creating my protagonist to enjoy her subjugation? Does it help that she isn’t real? To some people, that makes all the difference; to others, there is no difference. Should I care?
What I do know is that I enjoyed writing WOLF GIRL, it sometimes turned me on, and that Erik Nye, while not as evil as I usually write my villains (since that’s how I like them), is not held up as a paragon of virtue to be emulated whenever you get the power, fame, money, or magic to transform your fantasy into reality.
Meeting new characters
In addition to the characters I’d planned on: Erik, Tora, William Delaney, and Erik’s friends, I met a few others that surprisingly ended up hijacking a few places in the second half of my novel. Cast of unexpected characters includes:
Henry Jackson: A multimillionaire who specializes in prosperity magic and whose mansion doubles as a sort of informal embassy for traveling mages.
Matteo Rios: Head of the Coven Council, a man who is very good at his job but shadier in his personal dealings than I anticipated him to be.
Inna Oleneva: Bodyguard and assassin for the Coven Council. She’s not a witch herself, but she’s completely immune to magic.
Henry Jackson popped up because I needed a wizard with financial resources, and I confess, like many people I have a fantasy love affair with the obscenely wealthy. It gives you a wonderful setting to work with. He also ended up being more of a father figure to Tora, which as a sex slave was important for her.
Matteo Rios started out as straight as arrow as they come and ended up morally ambiguous when Inna Oleneva came onto the scene. I left their back story vague but ominous, but it’s possible they may inspire a short story or even a novel. Although if it’s a novel, I’ll probably have to do research, which is probably my least favorite thing to do when I’m writing. Some people love it, but I really don’t.
Repetitive words for sex
When I was writing, I was just trying to get everything done, as much as I could as fast as I could. But even I was weary of repetition by the end of the novel, and I don’t remember being that weary of it after FRIGID BITCH, so I imagine I’ve got a lot of work to do on the word choice front this summer. Oh, I’m so looking forward to it. /sarcasm
Glad to be finished
I’ve been doing well with a story needing to be written. It helps my mind feel busy and useful and exercised. It’s overall good for me, but even so, sometimes one can just have too much of a good thing, and two straight months of devoting my time and energy to one project has taken its mental toll. I was so happy to be finished and not have to think about it until June that I did not even feel sad that it was over, bereft at having lost people I’ve lived with for two months. I started feeling it the next day, and maybe this post has something to do with bringing my characters out and about with me, like little children shut away, missing that time together. But even I know better than to open WOLF GIRL and try editing it now. I’d burn out faster than a miniature match. Better to wait for awhile before starting up on something as ambitious as a novel again.
Thanks for hanging around with me on this one.