Monday, January 4, 2016

On My Settings

Alright, so who wants to read a long-winded, rambling monologue about my creative process? Nobody? Great! Let’s get started!

So, after half a decade of writing my particular strange brand of femdom erotica, I’ve built up a decent backlog of stories, captioned images and even a few novellas. The vast majority of these have been set in my Sex Mage World setting. But that was hardly my first setting, and probably won’t even be my last. However, it has far and away been my primary focus over the years, since its inception.

Some readers have lamented this, and even I had, on a few occasions, decided I was done with the Sex Mage World, and intended to quit using it in favor of new settings or returning to older ones. And yet, when it came down to it, I kept coming back to the Sex Mage World time and again, while other settings gather dust.

I guess for me, the Sex Mage World so well encapsulates my personal fantasies, that it’s difficult not to set any given fantasy I have in it, now that it’s been conceived. And of course, my stories come from those fantasies. Or, even if my fantasies aren’t set in the world of Sex Mages, the women in my fantasies are almost always have Sex Mage powers. My inspiration for erotica stems from my libido, and my libido is obsessed with the Sex Mage concept. It always as been, really, even before I had the official idea of what a Sex Mage was or what a world full of them would be like, so it makes sense I would remain fixated on it. Frankly, at the end of the day, I just can’t get into my other erotica settings the way I can the Sex Mage World.

Also, at this point, Sex Mages have become my “brand” of sorts. It’s what most people think of when they think of my work, and its what most new readers encounter. It’s at the point where some people assume or mistake my older, pre-SMW works as being SMW related, when they distinctly are a different setting.

And I suppose that brings me to another reason I keep doing the SMW; for as much as I like switching up the formula, I also like the idea of having a single setting I can just point to that encapsulates most of my ideas. The SMW, although it’s become complicated enough that describing all the nuances may take a little while, still has a basic concept you can sum up in a sentence: “The Sex Mage World is a version of Earth where all adult women gain sexual psychic and magic powers that let them directly control men’s genitals and libidos.” You can extrapolate a lot from that point, but it’s an easy pitch that needs little build up. My style of writing is very much a “get to the goddamned point” mode of storytelling. I want to get right into the action, the drama, and not have to spend large paragraphs up front expositing about the setting before hand. Being able to just say “It’s been X years since all women gained the power of Sex Magic” is a quick and easy way to get everyone on a common ground, regardless of whatever else is going on in the story.

Maybe it’s just lazy of me, I don’t know. Obviously anyone brand new to my work is still not going to get the full picture just from that description. But it’s an easy start, a ground rule description for the world that anyone can latch onto, suspend disbelief on that one idea, and run with. And in this setting, the story isn’t going to throw any more weird supernatural shit unrelated to Sex Magic out of nowhere to throw the reader off. Contrast that to my other settings, and, well, things aren’t so simple or easy to slip into.

Now, of course, the Sex Mage World setting has its own issues from a writing stand point. Some stories of mine just don’t work from a character or dramatic standpoint if every woman on Earth has the magic. A different kind of story needs a different power dynamic, and some of my earlier works definitely don’t work unless super powers are a rare thing that can occur in both genders from a variety of sources. But this leads to yet another point:

The Sex Mage World, for whatever else it has going on for it, is solidly focused on the erotica element. Whether I actually pull that off effectively or not is up to the reader’s taste, but often times, my erotica work in other settings has little to do with actual erotica, and tends to just be a different kind of story with lots of sex and sexualization.

My true passion for stories is what I’d like to dub “heroic fiction.” Be it adventurers, superheroes, or other such archetypes, my creativity tends to always fall towards this theme of writing, regardless of the type of story I want to write. I’ve tried different genres. Horror, mystery, historical fiction, space opera. All inevitably start turning into a basic “good guys vs bad guys” plotline of the cheesy comic book variety. I can’t tell you why this is; it just keeps happening as I write. Erotic writing has really been my only successful break from the pattern, and even my earlier works kept trying to turn into wannabe superhero adventures, if I didn’t just start them out that way. Hell, even today, most of my attempts at longer stories will start going that route if I let the story keep writing itself past the first couple chapters.

When I was still working on the early SMW, I even made connections between the Sex Mage World and my other two major settings, the Centurions Universe and the World of Civero, setting up yet another comic booky multiverse. And while part of me still thinks the idea is kind of fun on some level, lately I find myself just wanting to make the SMW it’s own thing completely separate from anything else.

Now there’s not necessarily anything wrong with mixing the elements like that, but then again, I think the majority of my readers are more interested in the sexual themes of my erotic work than wanting to read about superhero battles and space wizards fighting trans-dimensional demons. One of the reasons I slowed down writing for a while was that I found myself constantly wanting to turn the SMW into yet another sci-fi/fantasy universe with superheroes emerging to battle monsters.

The Year 100 story is a good example: it’s about a group of Sex Mage Special Forces soldiers and a young man who gains magic powers of his own, teaming up to battle terrorists transformed into half-demon monsters who were trying to use city-wide massacres as part of a dark ritual to summon a demon god from another dimension.

This was supposed to be a fun, playful universe about women using psychic blowjobs and orgasm blocks to tease the shit out of their boyfriends and husbands as part of their bedroom play. How the fuck did that turn into an apocalypse story with virtually no sex or even seduction and a body count in the tens of millions? Well obviously because when looked at seriously, the SMW is a horrible nightmare universe, but I’m talking about focus and tone here, and really, Year 100 wouldn’t have come into my mind except for my inability to not turn every story concept I had into a superhero punch-up.

Now, I’m not saying there isn’t merit to something like the Year 100 story for the Sex Mage World. In fact, I still mostly consider it canon, despite no intention of ever writing it. And dark elements and bloody history have indeed added depth to the setting. But that’s not what the SMW is really supposed to be about, despite how much the darker implications may freak out some readers. That’s not what my overall erotica was supposed to be about.

It’s true I could blend heroic fantasy with my erotic fantasy. Plenty have writers have done so, professional and amateur, creating fully fledged fantasy worlds that also have tons of sex. I’ve managed it: “Violet vs Sarah” I still think managed to blend my sex power fetish fantasies with a basic hero vs villain plot in a way I haven’t managed to capture as well since. Even “Feel Girl” did it pretty well, I think. But I don’t want to just rehash Violet vs Sarah and Feel Girl over and over again.

Weirdly, sex and heroic adventure are pretty separate interests for me, despite my mixing it in some of my works. I’ve never really gotten into those adult fantasy stories I mentioned above, where a superhero adventure or a fantasy adventure happens, and sex scenes are thrown in to make it exciting. I’ve never gotten into porn parodies or ecchi/hentai adventures. I’ve never bothered watching a whole movie just to get the context of the three-minute sex scene that occurs that may or may not have anything to do with the character development, when I can just skip to the sex scene and insert my own context. Ergo, when an adventure story goes on long enough that I get into the adventure itself, I usually get annoyed when the sex pops up, because I don’t care about the sex, I want to see what happens next in the story.

Look at it this way, if you have an 80 page story billed as erotica, and the only erotic element that occurs is a half-assed sex scene forced in at page 70, and the rest of the story is about fighting demons or stealing a pirate’s gold or whatever, well, then why even have the sex scene in the first place? Wait, wasn’t this supposed to be an erotica? Why am I writing some schlock pulp adventure that has nothing to do with what I originally intended to write, when I don’t even like schlock pulp adventures?

And that’s ultimately what’s happened with the World of Civero and the Centurions. As the settings actually developed into their own solid concepts for heroic adventures, every story I tried writing in them with the intent to be an erotica started turning into some cheesy adventure story. I have over a dozen quarter-written stories I’d intended to make into erotica ebooks, that I realized weren’t even erotica, and trying to make them such would only feel disjointed. And then my interest in continuing the story would usually die, because my interests in actually writing superhero and adventure stories has it’s own rather considerable mire of hang-ups and set-backs. But that’s a rant for another time.

So, will I ever write another Centurions or Civero story again? I honestly don’t know. I do notice I have this weird tendency that whenever I declare I’m finished with something, suddenly my muse stops by just to prove me wrong so she can giggle at my making an ass of myself again. But I’m not sure that trick will work this time. Certainly, I’ve managed to do some stories in those settings that don’t fall into the above mentioned traps. “Kat’s Boytoy”, “Sami”, “Sheila”, they all manage to maintain an actual erotic plot without devolving into a schlocky adventure story. But such things seem a rare inspiration to come by.

So I guess, for now, I’m stuck with the Sex Mage World for my erotic outlet. Maybe I will manage to get another successful sex-adventure fusion story going again. Or maybe I’ll manage to come up with another successfully erotic-focused setting with a different power dynamic and theme than the SMW. I do have some ideas for both. But as usual, only time and my muse’s capricious whims will tell.


  1. Hi,
    just to say i'm a regular french reader but not very good at writing in english excuse my mistakes.
    And I was saying to myself that the Sex Mage World would be a great background for a role playing game. That' all :)
    Please go on with your fantastic stories and captions.

    1. Haha, I've considered half-assing a PDF for a Sex Mage World RPG, but I could never figure out a good system to use for the game. I figure you can just "roleplay" freestyle well enough! ;)

      I did actually use the World of Civero as an RPG once. Didn't work out too well, but I think the setting can work well for a game with the right crowd.