Like a lot of things it happened while I was trying to do something else. My goal at the time was to find women to have sex with. A goal that didn’t meet with much success. But slowly my priorities changed and I began to enjoy corresponding with women about sex just for the sake of the intimate revelations.
Sometime in the early 80s I began answering, and placing, ads in swingers contact publications. I’d been aware of these publications for several years before then but was more interested in reading the ads, looking at the pictures, and fantasizing about meetings.
I don’t recall exactly what spurred me to take the next step but I began answering some of the ads that seemed especially appealing.
I was doing this as a single man. Single men in the swinging lifestyle have difficulty finding women interested in meeting them. The main problem is that there are so many other men, single and otherwise, beating around the same bushes. And it doesn’t help that single men have a reputation for being pushy, socially inept, and rude.
Personally the social inept shoe fit me pretty well. Still does, to some extent. So I started out with the odds against me.
I persevered and ended up answering a lot of ads, hundreds I’m sure. And after very limited success with answering ads I began placing my own; it seemed like there would be less work involved if I knew from the start that I was responding to someone who’d already expressed an interest in me. It was, in fact, less work. Very few women expressed any interest in meeting me.
But there were those, most often some distance away from where I was living, who wondered if I would like to be their penpal. They had secrets. Secrets they wanted to share with someone. Someone they could feel safe with because we were never going to meet.
Slowly I began to focus on these women; answering their ads and publishing ads directed at them. I connected with about a hundred women over the course of nearly fifteen years. As the Internet evolved I sought correspondents there. Some of these exchanges lasted for only a letter or two; others lasted for years.
I learned a lot about the secret lives of women. They told me about affairs they’d had or were having. About early sexual experiences or abuse. They shared their feelings of clandestine joy, hidden pain, surreptitious wonderment at their own newly discovered sexuality, suppressed anger at those who abused or constrained them, and, sometimes, the buried guilt of having to hide so much from the people close to them.
At first my primary interest was in learning about their real-life experiences and sharing mine. But after a while we were sharing our fantasies as well. I found myself imagining what it would be like to enter into a particular woman’s fantasy and writing her about my ideas. Some wanted me to continue and create more elaborate scenarios. This is how my erotic writing began.
The conventional wisdom about women’s fantasies is that women prefer their erotica to be less than explicit, almost fluffy; the stuff of popular romance novels. This was not my experience. I don’t know how representative my correspondents were of women in general but they quickly became impatient with my “sensitive guy” approach and requested more explicit language with edgier scenes. As I mentioned in an earlier post one of my most popular stories, based on a correspondence I had with a woman in Georgia, involved a situation very close to rape.
This was an extreme case. But many did involve behavior that, no doubt, would have shocked my penpal’s friends and family; public sex, multiple partners, Black men, bikers, and incest. To name a few.
That’s how my correspondences started and gives you an overview of the subject matter. I’ll explore this theme further in future posts.