I woke up this morning thinking the time is now right to get my women's erotica business finally up and running.
That may seem an unusual statement, and one might wonder what dreams I had last night that led me to this decision. As I do every night these days I dreamt much overnight, but none of it related to this. Rather I woke feeling restless and impatient, tired of waiting for things to shift in my favour and wanting to do something for myself. The erotica business sprung to mind immediately, fortuitously in some ways. In the years since I first came up with the idea the technology to make it so has become simpler and more common, and the world itself I think moved in a direction more favourable to such a notion.
The original idea was this: erotic stories written for and addressed directly to women. The stories were told in the first person by the male protagonist, but spoken to the recipient - their lover - as if in a letter, or a remembrance, or a long monologue, X rated in parts like a Mills and Boon with the naughty bits left in. The hook was that these stories were to be recorded and personalised to the customer - say someone called Emma ordered a story then she would be delivered a recording in which her name was spoken and her blonde hair and blue eyes would feature. The idea was to create an intimate bond, and the market lonely or bored housewives looking for adventure and the touch of the exotic.
It was a winning concept. I wrote half a dozen stories without too much difficulty, all well received by my focus group. I created a website and did some pre-advertising, which returned very promising results. The problem I found was finding someone to record the stories. Some of it was my embarrassment - I felt pretty awkward asking these characters to recite these stories. The few guys who actually agreed to it were all wrong for it.
The stories had to be intimate and conversational. Not a story really, and not told as a conventional story would be. It was more a reminiscence, the free flowing thoughts of someone recalling a moment or a relationship, spontaneous and real in the way that people are. I didn't want a pristine performance of it - as some tried to give me - but rather the sort of naturalistic flow you get recalling something over a bottle of wine, or murmuring into your loved one's ear.
To that end I also knew the type of voice I wanted - educated, but colloquial Australian. That's how the stories were written, that's how they had to be recited. Of course I had much grander ambitions than that. Most of the respondents to my advertising were American, and clearly that would be my biggest market should it take off. While many would likely swoon imagining some handsome Hugh Jackman or Eric Bana whispering in their ear, the reality was that I would need American voices too.
That was the idea, but none of it came off. I couldn't get the voices and I struggled to find the technology to manage what I promised. The project was regretfully shelved.
Seven years later and times have changed. I doubt the personalisation - such a great idea - is viable even still, but much else has changed. I still need to get voices, but I can outsource much of that. The website is simple, the stories are written - though I'll probably need to write another half dozen for variety.
Bedroom voice is making a comeback. Maybe.