Here’s an author interview with Rob Matthews. Take it away, Rob…
- How did you start writing erotica?
My wife, Tina, is American and we live in the US for most of the year. But I also teach in a language school in London. I started writing her erotic letters while we were apart. I became fascinated by erotica because it’s a very difficult genre to write in. It’s as hard to write as good comedy. People falling over all the time is not enough to make something funny. And lots of throbbing members and thrusting buttocks do not automatically make something erotic. As George Orwell said, ‘If there were easy money to be made out of dirty words, a lot more people would be making it.’
- What’s your favourite published work of yours and why?
I’m very happy with Come Home With Us. It’s the story of a married couple, Rob and Tina (guess where I got those names from). They love each other very much but Rob can’t satisfy Tina in bed. They’ve always enjoyed fantasising about Tina having sex with other men. Tina has her eye on the gorgeous Steve in her office and sees the chance to make it happen in real life. They soon discover that fantasy and reality are two very different things. I like it because it’s about real people with real feelings. They go through the full gamut of love, excitement, jealousy, anger and sadness.
- What erotic authors do you enjoy reading?
Alex Hathaway is great. Her From Housewife to Cuckoldress was a big inspiration for me. She understands the importance of character development in making a story erotic. It’s not enough to know that two people are having sex. We need to know who they are and why they’re having sex. That’s when the real eroticism starts.
- Do your nearest and dearest know what you do, and if so, what was their reaction when they found out?
I was worried about telling my family, but I couldn’t keep quiet about a three book deal! My dad said, ‘Congratulations.’ My mum said, ‘When can we read them?’ to which my answer was, ‘You can’t.’ Don’t get me wrong, I’m very proud of Come Home With Me, but there are some things you can’t share with your eighty year old parents.
- What was your ideal career when you were a child?
It changed all the time. Whenever I learnt anything, I immediately wanted to do it professionally. When I learnt tennis, I wanted to win Wimbledon. When I learnt the guitar, I wanted to front a rock band. But I had to face the fact that I’d never be Pete Sampras or Johnny Marr. So I decided to be a teacher and a writer – two things I believe I can do at a high level.
- How do you get yourself in the mood to write?
A few years ago, I spent four days in New Jersey, having my power within unleashed by Tony Robbins. One of the techniques he taught us was how to get into a peak state. If you’re feeling tired or out of sorts, crank up your favourite music, jump up and down, punch the air and shout, ‘Yes! Yes! Yes!’ Your neighbours will think you’re having sex, but that’s okay. Do that for five minutes and you’ll be in the mood to write or take on any other challenge.
- What’s the best writing tip you’ve ever been given?
I’ve always liked the Ernest Hemingway quote, ‘The first draft of anything is shit.’ I remember this every time I start thinking, ‘Why am I even bothering? This is rubbish.’ I would say to all writers: keep going, get the first draft written and then start polishing it. It’s in the rewrites that the magic happens.
- If you get writer’s block when you’re writing, how do you get around it?
Taking our dog for a walk always clears my head. And sometimes, I take five minutes off to watch something on youtube. My favourite is a film reviewer called the Nostalgia Critic. Watching him is a break from writing, but it’s also useful. When he hears tin-eared dialogue in a movie, he shouts, ‘Who talks like that?’ If I hear this line in my head while I’m writing, I know I’ve done something wrong.
- Which author, erotic or otherwise would you love to meet and why?
Can I cheat and choose a dead writer? I’d love to meet PG Wodehouse. His Right Ho, Jeeves is the most perfect book I’ve ever read. It tells an intricately constructed story in a series of brilliant comic scenes. It sounds like the narrator is just rambling on but really not a single word is wasted.
- What are you working on at the moment?
Come Home With Us is the first part of A Cuckold Odyssey. I’m working on part two at the moment. It takes the jealousy to a new level as Tina realises she might not be the hottest wife in town anymore.
- What’s the biggest writing challenge you’ve ever taken on? Did you succeed?
Last September, my editor at Fanny Press asked me if I could deliver part two by the first of July this year. Getting a whole book written, re-written and ready to submit in less than a year is proving to be a challenge. Did I succeed? I’ll let you know on the second of July. But it’s going very well so far and everything’s on course.