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Stone and Silt
by Harvey Chute

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Kindle Edition published 2013-08-14
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Big Al's Books & Pals 2014 Readers' Choice Awards: Young Adult Nominee

A ruthless murder and a stolen shipment of gold.

At school, sixteen-year-old Nikaia Wales endures the taunts of bullies who call her a “half-breed.” At home, she worries about how her family will react if she reveals her growing feelings for the quiet boy next door.

Those are soon the least of her troubles. Nikaia discovers a hidden cache of gold, and when police find a corpse nearby, her father becomes a suspect. Worse, Elias Doyle is circling, hungry to avenge his brother’s death.

Nikaia desperately searches for clues to save her father. In her quest to find the killer, she learns about the power of family, friendship, and young love....

Author Topic: Promiscuous Heroines  (Read 6010 times)  

Offline Going Incognito

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #100 on: September 12, 2017, 03:08:12 PM »
Sex sells, but if you can get it for free it's a bonus.

Download the app today!

Oh, it's never free, lol. May wanna read the small print on that app first.

Online Usedtoposthere

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #101 on: September 12, 2017, 03:10:28 PM »
Probably crappy and stereotypical of me but I'm surprised at Utah. As much as you hear about polyamory there, I figured that would be higher. Tho maybe not if say the sister wives each only sleep with one partner, that would greatly bring down the average of that one partner sleeping with multiple partners.
Fundamentalist LDS is VERY small compared to the LDS population (with which, I hasten to add, it is NOT affiliated other than historically), and it's often not even in Utah. Colorado City for ex is in Arizona.

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #102 on: September 12, 2017, 03:12:21 PM »
However, according to Wikipedia, however correct their article may be, it is a very recent concept and not steeped in any kind of original lore. Which ties in with my own reading experience, and I've been reading vampire stories for over four decades now. The first time I came across it was with Stephenie Meyer. Right along with sparkly vampire skin.

Nic, if you poke around in gaming wikis, you'll find references to the kill-the-mother trope kathrynoh and paranormal_kitty are using. Leveling an accusation of intellectual theft based on paranormal_kitty's one-sentence description of her book's use of the trope doesn't seem right to me. Let's please put this topic to rest from here on out.

Offline Colin

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #103 on: September 12, 2017, 03:19:21 PM »
Oh, it's never free, lol. May wanna read the small print on that app first.

Quite right. It always comes (no pun intended) with strings attached. Ask any promiscuous puppeteer.

Offline Going Incognito

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #104 on: September 12, 2017, 03:19:39 PM »
Fundamentalist LDS is VERY small compared to the LDS population (with which, I hasten to add, it is NOT affiliated other than historically), and it's often not even in Utah. Colorado City for ex is in Arizona.

True, true. Good point.

Offline Going Incognito

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #105 on: September 12, 2017, 03:21:20 PM »
Quite right. It always comes (no pun intended) with strings attached. Ask any promiscuous puppeteer.

Lol

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #106 on: September 12, 2017, 03:27:52 PM »
Quite right. It always comes (no pun intended) with strings attached.





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Offline Going Incognito

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #107 on: September 12, 2017, 03:36:22 PM »
It would be interesting to see the raw data on the averages. You'd guess that the individual responses would run the full spectrum, but from what Ive personally observed I'd be curious to see if the responses are more like lots of 15's and lots of 1's, which still end up averaging that 5-7, depending.

Offline EC Sheedy

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #108 on: September 12, 2017, 05:49:38 PM »
What are your thoughts on female characters who sleep around? How do readers react? Do you write them, or do you have favorite examples?

Not a fan, either to write or read. Other readers mileage may vary. Promiscuous means indiscriminate, casual, uncaring about sharing ones self/body with another. It's a loaded word--or used to be. It has nothing to do with female empowerment. Yes, a character can have more than one partner, but not carelessly or indiscriminately--if she is to be a hero. Unless, of course, she considers past promiscuity a fault in her past that she wishes to overcome.
 

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Thou shalt not is soon forgotten, but Once upon a time lasts forever."   ― Philip Pullman

Offline Lilly_Frost

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #109 on: September 12, 2017, 07:08:48 PM »
Not only would they not be happy, they would be actively angry unless there were serious extenuating circumstances--like his sex partner just got shot by a home-invader and needed to get the hospital ASAP, lol

Personally, no guy I know would be happy if he didn't have an orgasm virtually every time,

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Offline WasAnn

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #110 on: September 12, 2017, 07:47:09 PM »
I took one of those surveys.

I totally lied.

Online Tilly

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #111 on: September 12, 2017, 07:53:52 PM »
Not a fan, either to write or read. Other readers mileage may vary. Promiscuous means indiscriminate, casual, uncaring about sharing ones self/body with another. It's a loaded word--or used to be. It has nothing to do with female empowerment.

This ^

Maybe its a UF thing (like the expected snark) but I don't equate a strong woman with sleeping around, rather the opposite.

Online Paranormal Kitty

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #112 on: September 12, 2017, 07:58:45 PM »
I don't think the strong woman characterization is dependent upon sleeping around or not sleeping around. A strong woman could do either, depending on her personal choices.

Offline Crystal_

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #113 on: September 12, 2017, 08:01:32 PM »
One reason that some women reading more realistic romance might not be able to relate to a heroine who had a lot of casual sex is a ... well, matter of realism in how satisfying such sex tends to be for men vs. women. One of my sons (aged 30) said recently that when he was younger, sexual satisfaction was more of a binary thing. "You checked a box. I had sex? Ding. Box checked." Whereas, since somewhere around 75-80% of women require more stimulation than intercourse provides to reach orgasm, and different women require different types/amounts of such stimulation, orgasmic sex requires a partner wiling to put in the effort to discover what works for her.

For my audience (not all audiences, even in romance), which happens to be looking for more realism (and is reading for romance), they probably aren't going to think of a heroine who has tons of casual sex as powerful, because they're going to think that sex probably isn't all that physically satisfying. A lot of the appeal of romance, especially of the steamier variety, is the idea that she's got a guy who cares about her both physically and emotionally and who takes great pleasure in giving her great pleasure.

Which isn't every guy, especially every hookup from a bar.

I'm sure people will chime in about how physically satisfying casual sex can be for women, but I'm relying on the ample statistics available on how often women orgasm and what they need to do it. Personally, no guy I know would be happy if he didn't have an orgasm virtually every time, and I'm not either, so that's a big factor for me in my reading. If my thought is, "Really? She got off from that?", it's not gonna be a real sexy book. And a LOT of romance-and-other is still written like that. Written the way a guy thinks is hot sex and that most women aren't going to be satisfied by.

That's a nice thought, but I don't buy it. I think it's more garden variety slut-shaming and internalized misogyny. We're all (US, other countries too, to one degree or another) members of a society with serious double standards about sexuality. Everyone internalizes then to some degree.

Online Ava Glass

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #114 on: September 12, 2017, 08:25:05 PM »
Not a fan, either to write or read. Other readers mileage may vary. Promiscuous means indiscriminate, casual, uncaring about sharing ones self/body with another. It's a loaded word--or used to be. It has nothing to do with female empowerment. Yes, a character can have more than one partner, but not carelessly or indiscriminately--if she is to be a hero. Unless, of course, she considers past promiscuity a fault in her past that she wishes to overcome.

Question: do you apply this view equally toward male protagonists?

I ask because in the romance genre it too often is not. You'll find books where the hero has sexual relationships with lots of women at the beginning, but the narrative treats those women as trash. Trash to be tossed aside for the virginal "treasure" that is the heroine. The authors don't even see those women as human. But the guy who slept with them all...he's fine.

Eff slut shaming. It is such a blight on the romance genre.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2017, 08:36:36 PM by Ava Glass »

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #115 on: September 12, 2017, 08:26:58 PM »
I don't know that casual sex is any less satisfying than sex in a long term relationship. A lot of women stay with guys who don't satisfy them if the rest of the relationship is good.

I also don't think multiple partners necessarily means casual sex. There's a lot of ground between a one night stand and a long term monogamous relationship.  One of the big differences between UF and romance is that in UF the female MC might be putting her life on the line constantly. She's got no time for a serious relationship.

Online Usedtoposthere

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #116 on: September 12, 2017, 08:48:53 PM »
I don't know that casual sex is any less satisfying than sex in a long term relationship. A lot of women stay with guys who don't satisfy them if the rest of the relationship is good.

I also don't think multiple partners necessarily means casual sex. There's a lot of ground between a one night stand and a long term monogamous relationship.  One of the big differences between UF and romance is that in UF the female MC might be putting her life on the line constantly. She's got no time for a serious relationship.
The OP was specifically asking about "promiscuous" heroines, which seemed to be casual sex rather than simply multiple partners. I don't think, outside of sweet romance and the specific niches of virgin-type romance, that multiple partners in one's past are any issue for romance readers. If you don't like it, write something different. The audience for it is out there. "Be the change you want to see in the world" and all that. Including writing about how a great guy takes his time and figures out how to satisfy his woman really well and really often. Which could encourage women in real life to have a talk with those guys "who don't satisfy them" and see if they can change that. Men have orgasms every time. Why the heck shouldn't women expect that?

Yes, there's a double standard, but I don't think it's as extreme as some people think. I've found that if I have a hero who I show as having had a bunch of casual sex, I have to give him a good reason for not wanting that anymore, or it has to be in the past. And monogamous heroes and guys who haven't been with anybody for a while are generally more popular for me. Like I said, if he is having casual sex, readers want him to be respectful and decent about it. I know there are "bad-boy" trends with jerk guys who treat women like used Kleenex until they meet The One Pure Woman For Them, but that's not the whole market.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2017, 09:04:18 PM by Usedtoposthere »

Offline Going Incognito

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #117 on: September 12, 2017, 08:55:08 PM »
Not only would they not be happy, they would be actively angry unless there were serious extenuating circumstances--like his sex partner just got shot by a home-invader and needed to get the hospital ASAP, lol

Even then he'd probably want to finish first.  ;)

Online Tilly

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #118 on: September 12, 2017, 09:36:11 PM »
I don't think the strong woman characterization is dependent upon sleeping around or not sleeping around.

You asked about promiscuous heroines. "Promiscuous" is defined as having or characterised by many transient sexual relationships (ie: sleeping around) and demonstrating an unselective approach to or indiscriminate/casual sex. Many UF authors try to show their heroine is "strong" by having her be promiscuous. As someone stated more elegantly upthread, its like the author tries to prove she approaches sex like a man which must make therefore her strong, when it doesn't.

Online Rosie A.

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #119 on: September 12, 2017, 10:10:08 PM »
Question: do you apply this view equally toward male protagonists?

I ask because in the romance genre it too often is not. You'll find books where the hero has sexual relationships with lots of women at the beginning, but the narrative treats those women as trash. Trash to be tossed aside for the virginal "treasure" that is the heroine. The authors don't even see those women as human. But the guy who slept with them all...he's fine.

Eff slut shaming. It is such a blight on the romance genre.
I feel you here. This is something I've noticed a lot. It annoys me, too. I just recently read a Renaissance romance where the hero dumped his long time flame for the heroine before even meeting her and referred to the other woman as temporary. This isn't the first book I've read where that's been in there. It's something I avoid in my own books. I know it's not a perfect world but I don't believe in double standards (or promiscuity for that matter but that's besides the point). 

Online Ava Glass

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #120 on: September 12, 2017, 10:36:03 PM »
its like the author tries to prove she approaches sex like a man which must make therefore her strong, when it doesn't.

What is having sex like a man vs. having sex like a woman (other than ridiculous sexism)?

Offline EC Sheedy

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #121 on: September 12, 2017, 10:44:51 PM »
Question: do you apply this view equally toward male protagonists?

I ask because in the romance genre it too often is not. You'll find books where the hero has sexual relationships with lots of women at the beginning, but the narrative treats those women as trash. Trash to be tossed aside for the virginal "treasure" that is the heroine. The authors don't even see those women as human. But the guy who slept with them all...he's fine.

Eff slut shaming. It is such a blight on the romance genre.

You made me think--and my answer surprisingly is yes. I neither write, nor like, sleep-around, promiscuous heroes. But then I like sexy, confident, (even arrogant ) heroes who have some standards (wobbly or not) and think before they choose sex with a woman.

I notice, too, that in books where the hero is "promiscuous" and has a lot of women in his past, it's not always portrayed as a positive characteristic but rather one he needs to, uh, get over. He's often been screwing around because the poor boy has been disowned, has family issues, or has not been able to connect emotionally. Enter heroine aka love everlasting.  ;D

You're right about how many romances appear to trash/denigrate the women in the hero's past. Unfortunate. Probably more because of page-real estate than malicious intent. Such women are generally backstory. But it is something we should think about more often. Good point.
 

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Offline Doglover

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #122 on: September 12, 2017, 11:06:11 PM »
Probably crappy and stereotypical of me but I'm surprised at Utah. As much as you hear about polyamory there, I figured that would be higher. Tho maybe not if say the sister wives each only sleep with one partner, that would greatly bring down the average of that one partner sleeping with multiple partners.
I thought polygamy was now illegal, in every state.



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Offline Doglover

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #123 on: September 12, 2017, 11:57:39 PM »
This ^

Maybe its a UF thing (like the expected snark) but I don't equate a strong woman with sleeping around, rather the opposite.
I agree. It has nothing to do with religion either, or with a fear of STDs. We used to have something called morals; don't they have those any more?


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Online Ava Glass

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Re: Promiscuous Heroines
« Reply #124 on: September 13, 2017, 12:17:52 AM »
We used to have something called morals; don't they have those any more?

What we have now is the wacky notion that slut-shaming is wrong. Imagine that.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2017, 12:22:22 AM by Ava Glass »