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How to Write an Erotic Novel

Copyright 2017

Claire Aspiras

All rights reserved.

ISBN : 9781370719570


"What's wrong with you, Peyton? I told you to get it done at the end of the month but you're giving me this half-baked story?" Mr. Gregory Williams threw my draft on his table, his face getting redder by the minute.

"I'm really sorry, Mr. Williams. I just need time. I promise I'll get back on track once I regroup myself. I just felt awfully out of sorts and having writer's block. I'm really sorry."

"Need time?" My boss glared at me across his executive chair. "You just came from your one-month vacation. I gave it to you expecting a good result since you've been away from stress and all the shit your work's giving you but you still need more time? How much time do you need to make a good book? Five years?"

I bit my lip as I continued fidgeting in front of him, tempted to just sprint away from his intimidating fat self and go home. At least there, I'd have the time to think. Think more. That's what I've been doing the last month I was away from work. To think. Apparently, when I thought back what were the things that crossed my mind during that lulling days, I couldn't somehow remember. Only to realize that I actually spent my vacation in my house, cleaning my apartment and did all the chores that've been neglected since I worked for the Williams' Bookshelf.

It was a publishing company that supported freelance and aspiring writers such as myself to have our works printed and sold out. They also provide e-book copies for the readers that opted on reading with their phones or kindles. Publishing the books was given for free for the writers but we signed contracts with the company that the commission would be split into seventy-thirty. Of course without the need to explain, the bigger portion goes to Williams while the rest goes to the writer.

As a broke twenty-two-year-old girl back then, I grabbed the opportunity and signed to be Gregory's employee and agreed to give him a story one every three months. At first he'd been so happy with me. I actually became part of Williams' Bookshelf’s success. Since my very first publish, people immediately took notice, bought and read it and my books went into a massive hype.

Whenever I walked by a bookstore, I always looked for my paperback if they'd sold out and indeed they have. I even asked the attendant how was Peyton Baker's novel going on. He then would answer me "sold out so fast, I'm having trouble keeping up with the demands." That would put a wide grin on my face, it'd be so hard to wipe for days.

I've been working for Gregory for two years now but something changed in the air. People's preference shifted, my fans began to get thinner and my books didn't sell out that much anymore. Gregory informed me about this but I already noticed the difference on the market. When I walked by the bookstore going home, Peyton Baker's books aligned in the shelf, its pages hanging open like they're thirsty for appreciation. No one's buying them anymore.

Gregory have at least ten writers in his contract but I was his favorite so the pressure was focused on me. Because I had the most number of fans, my books were phenomenal, I brought him more money, I worked fast and hadn't lapse with deadlines. Just recently.

I was four months, two weeks and three days late on the deadline. Because whatever position I put myself on my house, how fast and crazy I tossed and turned around my bed, I couldn't somehow think of a better plot. It seemed that I'm out of stories anymore. After two years and fifteen books, Peyton Baker's ink dried up from writing. And Gregory wouldn't like this if he ever found this out. In fact, seeing his red face right now, I could tell he's about to blow his temper even if he hadn't known it yet.

"You know what you need to do?" Gregory asked, his jaw ticking.

"Yes. I'm going to make a better book and finished it on or before the time frame."

"That's already given!" He snapped before adjusting his tie. "Besides, you're already way too late on the time frame."

"OK." I nodded and shifted on my feet.

Gregory blew out a large breath. "What you need to do, Peyton is to change genre."

"Huh? I uh... I thought because November is approaching, a horror book would be so timely. I'll make sure to finish it before trick or treat."

The draft I gave him was a fiction story with a lot of thrill, of vampires and bloody hunting and witch burning. I thought it'd be trendy and people would go lining up the counter once again, grabbing for my books to read during the night with the lights off, under their blankets with hot choco on their night table.

"No. You see Peyton, people change. Everything changes. Now their preference changed as well. They're not so thrilled with stupid magical stories anymore. We're not publishing children's books, for fuck's sake! We need to embrace this change. We have to innovate. To blend in with the trending taste."

"I am." I nodded. "I'm innovating. You see, these vampires aren't really vampires but the result of the scientist's failed projects..."

"Stop!" Gregory barked which made me jump from my spot in the middle of his office. "I've heard that one before. In fact, they've already made it a movie. That's not how innovation works. That's not a change at all. Christ!"

Gregory rubbed his hands over his face as if he could erase his entire feature with it. While I’ve already calmed my fidgets to minimal at this moment, I still felt like running out of that room. Away from people and just think. Think. Why did I ever wanted to think, I could never guess. And as to what, I still didn't have an idea either.

"You've proven yourself good with your action books. You're at your best when you're being JK Rollings for your magical and fiction stuff. I couldn't even begin to fathom how that beautiful mind of yours works when you do your twists with your horror, sci-fi and thriller. But you see, you're missing something."

Gregory paused as he watched me closely, as if waiting for me to understand what he's trying to say. But I just stared at him, never felt dumber my entire life. I bit my lip and fiddled with the hem of my blouse.

"Peyton..." Gregory momentarily closed his eyes like he was trying to control himself from punching my face. "You've never written a love story. People are shit crazy about that. It never gets old. They're sap like that, believe me. It's a modern fairy tale for big girls and boys out there even if they won't admit it and insist being cool. I mean who doesn't like a book with a couple, caught up in a tangled romance, falling in love. Having their happily ever after."

"I..." I licked my lips, feeling nervous more than ever. "You want me to write a romantic genre?"

He might as well fire me now. Jesus, how will I write something I've never even experience myself? This book would be a disaster even before I write it.

"Not just a romance book, Peyton. Have you read EL James' work? The one they put on big screen? I want you to make like that one. I don't mean you copy the plot nor have the same story line. You're creative so make some twist in it and a good story. I trust you can pull this stuff."

EL who? I didn't even know who and what he's talking about. I think I might be doing some researching once I return home. I swallowed hard.

"Ah... So OK... Romance, huh." I chuckled drily. "How much time do I need for this?" I hope he'd say one year.

"I'll give you two more months and you gotta give me nice results this time since you've lapsed for two sets already. By this moment, you already owed me two books but since you're going to start over again, I'm reconsidering. Get the book ready two months after today. Now you're dismissed."

"OK... Thanks!" I quickly ducked and sprinted out of his office, breathing a relieved sigh to finally be free from his negative vibe.


What the! I flipped the book to another page, determined not to read that part which made me uncomfortable on my seat, hairs standing up and face burning. The next chapter was fine, at least in the beginning when the characters were talking and Jesus! They're doing it again! Was this novel all about sex? Gregory read this? And he wanted me to write a book like this?

I was already in the middle of the book Gregory suggested to me, the chapters were mostly read by scan of my eyes. When the paragraph went to enumerating the look of the living room, I just skipped it and went straight to the next stanza. I mean why would other authors got the need to describe how a place looked like or what the person was wearing? Even the tiniest detail such as lint or dress sequence was put into words. What a waste of space!

With a frown and troubled heart, I finally put the book down and laid on my bed. The book was so suggestive with a lot of sex scenes. Gregory told me to make like that for my next book. Not just a romance novel but an erotic romance genre. Erotic. I didn't even know how to spell that one out. Erotic? What's the origin of that word? Erotic. Eros? Love? If it's love, shouldn't it be talking about the heart? Of the person's emotions and not on their flesh?

God! I groaned deep in my throat, rolling to my stomach as I thought about my own plot. Erotic. Romance. Love. The things I never had. Jesus! This was an impossible mission! I wouldn't be able to write anything at the end of this.

I sat up and reached for my phone on the night table before dialing a friend's number. The phone went to voicemail when no one answered. I pouted but tried again. After the third ring, it was finally picked up.

"Hey, bitch! Where the fuck have you been? Didn't think I'll hear from you this early! It's not even Christmas yet!"

"Yes, I know right. But I'm feeling the Christmas season right now."

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