My First Smut

My First Smut: “I love the satisfaction of knowing an HEA is waiting at the end”

My First Smut is a recurring feature where we talk about our formative smut experiences. These short confessionals may include such details as: What book did you read? How old were you? Were there other people involved? What made the experience special? What role does smut play in your life?

This week, author Renee Wilde talks bodice rippers, sexytimes, and happy endings. And the patriarchy.


First romance novel you read:

The Flame and the Flower by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss

How old were you (or what life stage were you in)?

12 or 13. I think 7th grade

How’d you get your hands on the book?

My grandma had a million “bodice rippers” that she got from yard sales. I was a huge reader and out of books, so I combed through hers.

What was the reading experience like?

Sexy! I was in rural Missouri and the daughter of teen parents… I had no sex Ed to speak of but had certainly been “feeling things.” Reading that it was normal (and healthy, and beautiful, and even fun!) to be horny was an absolute revelation to me

What made the experience special?

First of all, I loved history and historical things… Little Women was my favorite book (then and now!) and I was just starting to get into more grown-up classics, like Jane Eyre and the works of Austen… but I loved fast-paced plot driven stories. So discovering the Romance Novel as a genre opened a whole new world to me.

What role does smut play in your life?

It is my go-to comfort read. I love literary fiction (I’m a high school English teacher with a degree in English from Yale) and genre fiction equally, but for vastly different reasons. I love the romance genre’s unapologetic centering of female voices and desire. I also love the satisfaction of knowing an HEA is waiting at the end and discovering how it happens. I don’t want all the books I read to have happy endings, but I love knowing that I can always turn to a selection that does.

Any final thoughts?

Just want to add that romance reading and writing is a fundamentally feminist act of resistance to the patriarchy. ✊


Keep an eye out for Renee’s debut Regency Romance, coming soon! (We certainly will, since someone who knows that the best way to resist the patriarchy is by reading romance is clearly a kindred spirit.)

In the meantime, you can find her on Instagram and Twitter.

Have an early smut experience you’d like to share with us? If you’d like to see your story featured, send us an email or fill out our questionnaire and we’ll post it in an upcoming week.

2 thoughts on “My First Smut: “I love the satisfaction of knowing an HEA is waiting at the end””

    1. I also have fond memories of Woodiwiss, even though her books are completely bonkers. I keep meaning to revisit and write up The Flame and the Flower. Someday!

      Like

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