Here’s an author interview with S.S. Barry. Take it away, S.S…
How did you start writing erotica?
Well, I come from a third-world country where premarital sex is quite a taboo, and due to my personal circumstances and other personal reasons, I’m still a virgin. As an alternative to having sex, I dabbled into online, textual roleplaying (also known as cybering), and eventually got hooked to it. Around the same time, I also came across online erotic fiction on websites like Literotica, and I had already written a few casual poems and short stories.
That was when I pondered over the idea of combining my two hobbies into one by writing erotica, but I never really picked up on it at that time. A few years later, after having watched a certain sex scene from a softcore erotic film several times, I wasn’t satisfied with how short the scene was and the fact that it was not ‘hardcore.’ Inspired by that scene, but also discontent with its brief length, I decided that I should start writing erotica with ‘hardcore’ sex scenes that would read like ‘porn on paper.’ That is how I ended up penning my first erotic short story.
What’s your favourite published work of yours and why?
As of now, I’ve only written and published one erotic short story, and another general short story that is published under my real name. However, I don’t think either of them are my favorite. I feel that I’m still growing, so is my writing and there is a lot more that I hope to and shall be writing. So, maybe I’ll be able to pick a favorite at a later time in the near future.
What erotic authors do you enjoy reading?
I’ve read a lot of erotic fiction on Literotica and other such erotic websites. One particular erotic book that I enjoyed reading quite a lot was Masters of the Shadowlands by Cherise Sinclair. My literary idols include Henry Miller and Anaïs Nin.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I wish I were able to draw inspiration from my own personal experiences, but unfortunately, I have none, yet. Instead, I primarily draw inspiration from personal fantasies and my own ever-growing list of kinks and sexual interests. Additionally, I am often inspired by films, TV shows and even pornography.
Do you have any unusual writing rituals?
I don’t think I have any usual writing rituals, per say. However, I do often end up getting turned on while writing sex scenes, and then have to deal with that. *chuckles* I’m not sure if other erotica authors experience the same, I assume they do, but for me personally, it makes writing those scenes all-the-more fun yet trickier.
Where’s your favourite place to write?
Honestly, I’ll write just about anywhere, whether on a desk or in bed, as long as I have a computer, the Internet, and some privacy. Usually though, I find it more convenient to write erotica on the laptop while lying in bed.
Who is your favourite character from one of your stories and why?
As of now, I don’t think I have written a character yet that I could call my favorite. As I continue writing and publishing more, hopefully I might be able to pick a favorite.
Do your nearest and dearest know what you do, and if so, what was their reaction when they found out?
My parents don’t know about it, and I’m secretive about it with them. The only thing they know is that I write, and have published a few short stories. Just a few of my online friend know that I’ve gotten into writing erotica.
What was your ideal career when you were a child?
As a child, the first time I spoke about something career-related was when I told my parents I wanted to become an archaeologist. That kept on changing over the years until I finally realized that I was meant to be a writer.
How do you get yourself in the mood to write?
I don’t think I really have to get myself in the mood to write, unless I’m feeling lazy and am procrastinating. It’s more about having a worthwhile idea and the time to write it down.
What’s the best writing tip you’ve ever been given?
Since I’m still learning, I don’t think I’m in a position to give tips yet. However, I can pass on a tip that I’ve come across often, which is to write as much as you can on a daily basis. While I’ve not been able to write every day myself, but I am aspiring and hoping to do so.
If you get writer’s block, how do you get around it?
It tends to happen, every now and then, and currently, I just decide to take a break and wait until I feel inspired to write again, or I just search for inspiration. As of lately, my periods of writer’s block have not been too long.
If you could bring one of your characters to life, which one would it be and why?
So far, the protagonist of my first story was female, and the one of my second, upcoming work is also female. I wouldn’t mind bringing either of them to life, for selfish reasons. *chuckles*
Which author, erotic or otherwise would you love to meet and why?
Oh my, there are quite a few actually, neither of whom I can meet, sadly. Henry Miller would be at the top of the list, I guess. I just assume it would be quite interesting to meet and get to know him during the prime of his writing career. Others I would have liked to meet include Anaïs Nin, Lawrence Durrell and Gerald Durrell, and perhaps some even older ones would include Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald.
What’s your favourite genre within erotica and why?
Again, I don’t think I can pick a favorite, mainly because they all increase and I have so many kinks. If I had to pick, I’ve been a bit inclined towards writing cheating- and interracial-themed erotica.
What are you working on at the moment?
Last year, I started writing an erotic, interracial-themed novella that was going to be set in Saudi Arabia, revolving around an African American man and a married, Muslim woman, the wife of a sheikh. However, I had to put it on halt after having written just one chapter.
At the moment, I am working on another lesbian-themed novella that is set in Paris, which started out as a short story. It has relatively more plot and dialogues compared to my first short story. Slowly and steadily, I have also been working on my very first novel that I hope to publish under my real name via a publisher. It’s more like a journal in which I share my own personal beliefs, opinions and thoughts on sex and how it is perceived in my country.
What’s the biggest writing challenge you’ve ever taken on? Did you succeed?
The biggest challenge that I am struggling with is to juggle my freelance ghostwriting career (I work as a freelance writer to earn my bread and butter) and my creative writing pursuits. I hope to succeed at pursuing the latter as a full-time career and having enough time to thoroughly indulge in it.
What’s your biggest writing achievement? Why?
So far, the fact that I managed to publish and sell some copies of my first erotic short story has seemed like a tremendous achievement, simply because it wasn’t something I wasn’t entirely expecting.