By Big Ed Magusson (Guest Blogger)
Hi, I’m Big Ed, and I’m a sex addict.
Hi, I’m Big Ed, and I’m a sex addict.
I also write porn.
Well, actually I haven’t considered myself an addict in over a decade. I did have a problem with compulsive sexual behavior in my late twenties, and I spent five years in twelve step groups working through it and getting beyond that behavior. I also learned to differentiate “acting out behavior due to psychological issues” from “high libido with limited outlet” issues.
The latter is where the “write porn” comes from. Writing erotica of all stripes provides a great libido outlet that harms no one. It might even provide some pleasure to my readers. ;-)
The compulsive behaviors were for me, and for many, environmental as much as anything. There’s a great study with rats that showed they were much more likely to become addicted to heroin if they were socially isolated from other rats (read more about it here). I was living in cities where I had few friends, doing the workaholic routine, and desperately wanting human touch, and in particular female touch.
Fortunately, or unfortunately, there’s a way to get that. It’s called a lap dance. Back then they could be had for twenty dollars a song, with the amount of touch allowed varying from state to state and club to club. I wasn’t spending my money on anything else so why not?
The problem was, it’s a slippery slope. When does the desire turn into a crutch? How long before an occasional fun trip becomes every Saturday, regardless of budget, regardless of other plans? And how does that seep into your soul?
I tried to capture this in my story, The Fix:
* * *
I usually start jonesing on Thursdays. This week, it starts Wednesday. Three long days before I can see her.
As usual, once the adrenaline rush starts, work becomes a blur. My pulse throbs. My skin crackles. The testosterone soaks into my soul. I don't give a damn about PowerPoint, not that I ever did. I mark time, desperate for the weekend, desperate for the relief.
It doesn't help that Wednesday is the staff meeting from Hell. Two hours of listening to my boss and his favorite flunky extol the virtues of their most recent shuffling of org structure boxes and the new software tools they've bought to quote 'streamline our efficiency' endquote. I tune out. I can already hear the music in my mind. Fortunately, before it’s my turn for 'around the table' reporting, my cubicle mate pokes me. My boss frowns when I explain the most recent code snafu that will delay me finishing the beautiful graphs for his European conference. I promise I'll have them Friday close of business, which seems to mollify him a bit. Just a bit.
Wednesday afternoon does not improve. The data scrolling across my screen doesn’t make sense. I do another line walkthrough of the code. I don’t see anything wrong. I try some hand calculations. They don’t match my screen. When the janitor fires up the vacuum cleaner, I give up and head out. Once again, I have nothing to show for my day.
At home, I pop a Boston Market Frozen Meatloaf Dinner in the microwave and turn on Entertainment Tonight. It’s mindless, but it’s better than the news, which is better than the silence if I turn the TV off. The distraction helps a little. After I've eaten and washed my fork and glass, my mind drifts back to her. I sit back on the couch, open my pants, and masturbate to my first orgasm of the evening.
It’s okay. I mean, it’s an orgasm, so how bad can it be? Other than the mess, of course. I throw my shirt in the laundry and look for a book to read. Preferably one that I haven’t reread so recently that I can remember it all. I take my time and settle on a dog-eared worn favorite. It fills my evening until it’s time for bed.
I can’t sleep, though. Every time I clear my mind, thoughts of her slink back in and my blood heats. I give up and throw back the covers and stroke myself to another orgasm. It’s not enough, so I go for a third. Finally, sheer exhaustion overwhelms me and I drift into dreamland.
* * *
This first story spawned a series of stories on addictive behavior (which is now available in an anthology ebook, details below). As I explored this corner of sexuality, I realized that most work on addiction focused on how destructive it was. Very little pointed out just how much fun addictive behaviors are.
For the dirty secret of addictions is that they’re enjoyable. We get addicted to things that bring us pleasure—not to doing our taxes or eating lima beans. The addiction comes when we choose the pleasure over the longer term consequences. Sex has one of the great pleasures. So shouldn’t serious sexual addiction discussions reflect that?
My story Sugar follows an older man funding a young woman’s college education. He describes his pleasure at her company in the following excerpt:
* * *
On the drive to Denver in my BMW, she’s her usual chatty self. She talks about finals and studying and the big party at the Student Union at the beginning of the week. I ask how her roommates are doing and learn the sordid details of their recent failed romances and adventures in overdoing the alcohol. She accuses me of rolling my eyes, but I remind her that I was young once too, and can recall when the most important question in the world was where we were going to score our next joint.
She looks a bit abashed, and I chuckle. She’s never admitted to doing drugs, but sometimes her stories have convenient gaps in them. I don’t call her on them. I’m her lover, after all, not her father.
The restaurant valet gives us the usual double look. As usual, she ignores it, and as usual, it bothers me just a bit. I shake it off as we head inside.
The conversation continues its pleasant ramble over dinner. The only dissonant note is when I ask about her job search. She haltingly says there’s been no change.
“The offer’s still open,” I say.
She shakes her head. “And the answer’s the same. I can’t work for you.”
“It’d be good experience. And the company would pay for your MBA.”
She gives me a pained, pleading look.
I drop the subject. When she talks about her roommate’s job offer from Ernst & Young, I tell her about a consulting job they did for us a decade ago. We talk the nuts and bolts of business well through dessert, and she hangs on my every word.
I’m feeling like a king as we leave. She tucks her arm into mine and nestles close. When the valet brings the car, she smiles at him, and then gives me a kiss on the cheek. The valet can’t hide his envy.
Eat your heart out, kid.
I could float home.
Instead, I take the drive slow, savoring it. A beautiful young woman in a BMW, after a fabulous meal. Does it get any better than this?
At home, by unspoken understanding, we head up to the master suite. She grabs her overnight bag and excuses herself. While she’s in the bathroom, I turn back the sheets, undress, and get out the condoms. I stretch out on the bed and casually play with myself while I wait for her.
When she appears, she’s stunning. As usual. She’s in black thigh highs, a sheer robe, and the tiniest bra and g-string she owns. The necklace hangs at the top of her cleavage, a sparkling star against the tan of her skin and the black of her lingerie.
She smiles, confident and pleased at my reaction. She raises an eyebrow, silently acknowledging my appreciation. Then she slowly strolls forward, each foot placed precisely, each sway of her hips and her breasts fighting for my eyes and attention.
At the foot of the bed, she gestures toward my erection. “Is that for me?”
She kicks off her heels as she crawls onto the bed. With a lick of her lips, she gingerly takes my cock in one hand and sweeps her hair back. She looks me in the eye and then lowers her mouth.
* * *
As I wrote these stories, I realized that the growth in self-awareness was as much a part of addiction as the acts themselves. In The Fog of San Francisco, the narrator returns from an amazing lap dance in a seedy club:
* * *
Back in the hotel room, late that night, I realized that there was only one thing I wanted to do. I wanted to go back to the club with a condom and have Melani cuddle me while my cock nestled inside her.
I also realized that there was one thing I absolutely could not do. I couldn’t go back to the club with a condom and ask Melani to fuck me. You don’t pull the goddess into the gutter. You don’t suck the feast into the filth.
Which... which is what I was.
Sandy knew it. I knew it. Melani knew it—but didn’t mind.
And that broke my heart.
I couldn’t be the pathetic loser who talked about how tight a stripper’s ass was while he fucked her. I couldn’t be the guy who lived for handjobs under the table. I couldn’t be the one who emptied his wallet yearning for just a caress...
I couldn’t go back.
Somehow I got undressed, curled under the blankets in a fetal position, and cried. I cried until I fell asleep.
Morning brought blinding sun. Once again, I’d forgotten to close the curtains. I woke groggy, but when I stood my head was clear. I paused in front of the window. The fog had gone and the sun glittered off the Bay. Blue, beyond what I thought blue could be. Clean, as if God had wiped the grit from the air. As I stood there, breathing deep, a sense of warmth filled my body.
Church bells pealed, and I followed the sound to see a small Catholic church near the hotel. I smiled as I watched the happy people gathering in the square outside.
I threw my clothes on and headed down. I could slip into a back pew and have breakfast after. It felt like a day for, well, as cliché as it is, it felt like a new day.
* * *
Ultimately, I think the real challenge in addressing addiction in literary erotica is that it goes straight at the contradiction I opened with: is there a contradiction between being a former addict and a porn writer? I.e., do erotic and addictive story elements mix?
Hopefully, with these excerpts, I’ve shown that they can.
* * *
More of Big Ed’s work and stories can be found at BE’s Place, www.besplace.com, and BE’s Place Books, www.besplacebooks.com. His Addictive Desires anthology is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords.
by Big Ed Magusson
There’s a richness of experience where desire and addiction collide, rarely explored in literary erotica. The twelve stories in this collection portray individuals dealing with addictive desires in both blatant and subtle ways. From a man obsessed with checking online porn, to one who doesn't understand why his sugar baby wants to move on, some are stories of cluelessness. Others are stories of redemption--due to love or simply grown self-awareness. They each capture the depth of desire mixed with a need for more than simply sex.