Author Interview #2, with Malcolm J. Brenner!
NOTE: Malcolm's novel is of a controversial theme. Please read THE DISCLAIMER, which is in accordance with Google/Blogger's content policies. It's only realistic/honest to present a realistic/honest account. This has been the case with Mr. Brenner and I hope you will find this interview interesting.
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Jess: Why do you write erotic-themed material?
Malcolm: Because it's what happened to me and changed my consciousness, i.e. the way I look at the world.
Jess: How do you differentiate quality erotica (as an art form), from pornographic writing?
Malcolm: As some feminist once said, "Pornography is the literature of dominance." Porn exploits sex for commercial purposes, whereas erotica celebrates the pleasure and joy of consensual sex.
Jess: Totally agree with that definition of 'porn'. ;) I shall now ask how you would respond to the following statement:
“I am very put off by the notion of 'literate smut', as if any porn is intellectual, that erotica needs to have a high and low art distinction. I think this is just a pretentious way for people to excuse their taste for pornography.”
-- originally posted on http://www.barbelith.com/topic/925
Malcolm: I would say the person who made that statement is a prude who feels threatened by his or her own sexuality, but I might be misreading the statement, taken as it is out of context.
Jess: Your diplomacy at giving said person the benefit of the doubt is admirable. What inspired you to write erotic stories/poems/etc.?
Malcolm: I fell in love with a dolphin and ended up making love with her at her insistence.
Jess: Do you always follow the "safe, sane, consensual" credo?
Malcolm: Very little about my life has been safe or sane, but if it's not consensual it's rape.
Jess: Indeed (I always like it when a person is clear-minded about consent). What do you think readers will find most notable about your book(s)?
Malcolm: The fact that it is well-written and appears to have a rather widespread appeal outside the zoophile community (such as it is). I tried to write the story in such a way so that even readers who are not attracted to dolphins or other species would be able to relate to, and empathize with, the plight of the protagonist. Judging from the feedback I get, I succeeded.
Jess: In order to write on certain experiences, you would have to either research or live the life. Which describes you as the writer?
Malcolm: I have no talent for fiction or plot so I have to write about what happens to me.
Jess: Do you think erotica caters to a male or female market (or does gender of the target audience not matter)?
Malcolm: I think men are more stimulated by visual depictions whereas women seem to prefer sensual descriptions. I am surprised that my novel of human-dolphin love, Wet Goddess, seems to sell equally well to women and men. I thought it would be mostly men who were interested in it.
Jess: Are there any topics you will NOT tackle, with regards to sexual behaviors and attitudes?
Malcolm: Since I am writing now about my own molestation as a child and getting pissed on by a dolphin, I guess the answer is "no," but come to think of it I wouldn't write Lolita, either. Then again I'm not Vladimir Nabokov.
Jess: (YEAH, Nabokov--the stylistic storyteller!). Please share with us a short excerpt and blurb of your work (10-100 words).
“Elaine…” I whispered, “Elaine…”
“Do you want to… make love?”
The question hung on the wind for what seemed like an hour.
“Yes… no… Oh God, Zack, I don’t know,” she said, and grabbed me, toppling us to the sand.
-- from Wet Goddess, of a remarkable female dolphin who convinced the narrator that dolphins have every bit as much, if not more, awareness and intelligence as human beings.
Jess: Share an excerpt of your favorite author’s work (10-100 words):
"I was determined to have done with conjecture and discover the truth, even if, as I believed it would, the truth proved incomprehensible."
-- Stanislaw Lem, from Solaris (1961). It is the only book I have ever read that kept me up all night reading, because it relates so strongly to my own experience of another, non-human intelligence.
Jess: Please let readers know where they can find out more about you/your work.
Jess: Thanks so much for sharing your views on the art of erotic writing :)!
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MALCOLM J. BRENNER:
When Malcolm J. Brenner graduated from Riverview High School (of which he has no fond memories) in 1969, he attended New College of Florida, where the events on which WET GODDESS is based took place.
At an early age, Brenner was sexually molested by an "orgonomist" (orgone energy doctor) trained and certified by Wilhelm Reich--the notorious post-Freudian psychiatrist--to work with children. Brenner plans to document the terrifying child abuse he experienced in a forthcoming autobiography, Growing Up In The Orgone Box.
Of his work, Malcolm J. Brenner says, "I'd rather write fiction, but I have absolutely no facility for plot. Nothing I can imagine is as weird or as unlikely as the things that have actually happened to me. So I just write honestly about my life, which simply reads like fiction." His website is http://wetgoddess.net/
JESS C SCOTT:
Jess is the author/artist/non-conformist behind jessINK (her indie publishing division). One of her specializations is erotic literature.
If you are reading this and you write, in whatever genre, and would like to share your views via a similar Q&A, just check out/fill out the form at Author Interviews. Jess will email you with the link once it is posted.
Jess is available for Q&A's too. Drop her a note at missfeyATgmailDOTcom :)