Friday, February 1, 2013

Phallic Friday - Affairs

Oh my goodness... Friday snuck up on me! I guess because Sunday was Tuesday, I'm all out of whack!

So... today's discussion... affairs.

Are affairs something interesting to write about? Or do you feel cheated by the cheating spouse?

I guess if I'm writing erotica, affairs are okay. But for erotic romance... affairs are cheating on her love, and not romantic (unless the partner is gone pretty quickly and the partner is a true horror, and even then die-hard romance fans might still raise their eyebrows).

I was talking to a friend about the book, The Bride Stripped Bare. She was saying how shocked she was to read that book because the woman got braver and braver and did more and more wicked things. My reaction wasn't like that. I'd been told how wicked it was before I read it, and I remember thinking how tame it was. Maybe I need to re-read it and not think about "tameness" but think about it as a story.

Most of the stories I can think of about affairs are usually the man having the affair, not the woman. I'd like to write one about a woman playing up. I think that would be much more fun.

So, how do you feel about affairs? Would you read about a woman playing up? How horrid would her husband have to be to allow you to enjoy it/buy into the story? Would you just think she's a bitch?


  1. Cate, there is a Dick Francis novel (the title escapes me at the moment), and okay, it's not a romance, but the husband has an affair even though he is desperately in love with his wife. His wife is incapacitated physically. They go through a few traumas but at the end of the book the wife accepts she still has her husband, while he might seek physical release somewhere else. The husband is the 'hero' in this story and I really enjoyed the book.

    So I guess you can have an affair, but it has to be handled carefully so you don't alienate the reader.

  2. I guess an incapacitated wife makes the husband immediately sympathetic. I can see how that would work and how you could bring the wife around to the idea.

    Thanks, Anita, for your thoughts.

    Cate xo

  3. Interesting case, Anita. I'd totally accept that although the whole time I'd be bawling my eyes out for the wife and how she would feel. Would certainly add more emotional depth to a story.

  4. I agree with Anita too. I think making the motivation solid and strong enough to make sure that readers buy in to it (and don't think she is a bitch) is key. Maybe if the affair also makes her stronger in some way? Maybe if the affair is only temptation but she doesn't act it out?
    Because we're reading for heroines, while we want to see real life echoed, we don't really want to see the heroine fall... (like we might!)

  5. Thanks Lily and Lou for your comments. I had an idea ... and then I started reading Kate Belle's new Bloom... and I think it's done! LOL.

    Anyway, many more things to do... like re-writing about 4 partially edited things ... and many more ideas no doubt!

    Thanks for the thinking.

    Cate xo