“How to Write a Dirty Story” Book Review

October 24th, 13   •   Posted by Mistress Kay   •   No Comment
How to Write a Dirty Story

Showing the front cover

“How to Write a Dirty Story” by Susie Bright is a book about reading, writing, and publishing erotica. The book includes 300 pages along with nine different parts/chapters. The book takes about 3 hours (if not longer) to read from cover to cover, and it takes long if you stop to do the writing exercises that are included in the book. The book, aside from the cover, is discreet enough to read in public.

This book is actually an interesting set-up. The first third of the book is basically about what erotica is, what erotica isn’t, and the history of erotica. The second third is about actually writing erotica including some very basic do’s and don’t’s. The last third is all about editing and publishing your novel. I thought this was a really odd set-up for a book called “How to WRITE a Dirty Story”. I was expecting the book to focus mostly on the idea of writing the story and how to refine it.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’ve read some of Susie Bright’s work before, and I really do love some of her books. Herotica is an amazing series, and Susie Bright really did give us a head start into the world of mainstream female erotica. However, as someone who was really hoping to learn how to hone her erotica writing by reading this book, I feel like I’m left very disappointed.

I know a lot about writing is just practice. I know that. I have been practicing quite a bit, but to be honest, I was hoping this book would help me know some of the best ways to get started. I was hoping it would talk about how to tread that fine line between too vague and too crass. I was hoping it would talk about the best ways to describe a sex scene or how much sex was too much sex. I was hoping it would talk about how to make your story more sensual or how to make it less sensual if there was too much sex. Mostly, I was just looking for help on the lingo though; I always find myself having difficulty describing sex acts during sex.

I just didn’t get that in this book. There’s a lot of practical advice about erotica, why you should write it, and how writing it will effect your life, but I feel like the chapters that talk about the writing itself could have used more detail. I must say, though, that I really like that six or seven writing exercises that Susie included in the book. Those exercises are very helpful to getting rid of writer’s block and to get you in a writing mood.

How to Write a Dirty Story

Some of the inner pages

That’s not to say that this book is bad – it isn’t. It just doesn’t focus much on the writing portion of writing erotica. However, if you were looking for a book that covers the whole shebang really nicely, this book does it. If you wanted to know about the history of erotica and how it has been censored, this book will cover it. If you wanted to know about some of the basic dos and don’ts of writing erotica, it’s in here. The book also includes a lot of no-non-sense information about the publishing and editing process of erotica that will get you far. Susie Bright doesn’t glaze over the details with those chapters, and if you want to know details about editing, publishing, or selling your book, she does a good job of giving you the details while still telling you reality. Her sections include information about book tours, how to find a good editor, how to get along with your editor, what your editing process should include, and lots of other good information.

An interesting part of this book is how much this book focuses around Susie herself. She writes a lot of the sections based upon personal experience, and as such, a lot of the sections talk about her experiences and how she overcame or deals with it. She talks about how she edits her novels, what things work best for her, and the books she’s written. That’s an interesting look into what has worked for one author, but like anything else, do remember that everyone has a different experience with pretty much everything.

Overall, I like “How to Write a Dirty Story”, and it’s a good book, but I feel like the title is very misleading. As I was only interested in the process of improving my writing, the other two thirds of the book, while great information, were not anything like what I expected to get out of this book. If you want information on the full erotica writing, editing, and publishing process, this book is definitely worth reading, but if you want information just on the writing process, it isn’t too focused on that. I picked up my erotica book at Amaon for my How to Write a Dirty Story review.




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