Bad Sex Awards

How not to write a sex scene

From the Guardian, The Bad Sex Awards.

Now in its ninth year, the Bad Sex award was set up to “draw attention to the crude, tasteless, often perfunctory use of redundant passages of sexual description in the modern novel, and to discourage it”. At an annual ceremony, London’s literati gather to hear the shortlisted passages read out by actors during a boozy evening dinner. If the winning author actually turns up, he or she receives a bottle of champagne. Surprisingly, the Bad Sex award is an accolade many novelists claim to be proud to receive. When AA Gill picked up the award in 1999 he said, “I would far, far rather win this than the Booker.” Last year’s winner, Sean Thomas, described it as an “an enormous honour” to receive the award, for his comparison of a woman’s body to a Sony Walkman

For fans of the truly bad, this article is a must read. A few of my favorites:

The thing inside her jerked and threshed, a rising salmon, plunging home to spawn.”Yes!” she shouted, relishing the scarlet pain in her knees as he kept grinding them against the barnacled surface of the groyne.

Barnacled? Thankfully, I’ve never run into one of those.

It was wet and warm down there, which was only to be expected, but she might just as well have deposited my hand on a pizza for all the effect it had.

Hold the anchovies, please.

He was kneeling at the feet of his chaise and sniffing its plush minutely, inch by inch, in hopes that some vaginal tang might still be lingering eight weeks after Melissa Paquette had lain here. Ordinarily distinct and identifiable smells – dust, sweat, urine, the dayroom reek of cigarette smoke, the fugitive afterscent of quim – became abstract and indistinguishable from oversmelling, and so he had to pause again and again to refresh his nostrils.

I’m sorry, but that’s just too much information for me. These passages were meant to be stimulating? I think many novelists need to get out more often.

1 thought on “Bad Sex Awards”

  1. hehe that was good. you know i once knew a guy who actually spoke like that in bed, to me, for fuck’s sake. all flowery and over the top. i told him to please shut up and go home. hee hee.

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