Sex and Violence in Your Fiction

Kevin, Justin, and Stephan discuss the issue of sex and violence any how it works in fiction, or doesn’t. When should you show it, or should you ever? Should you avoid the topic altogether? Does including sexual violence downgrade your story or have affect our society in negative ways, or is it more important to stay true to the art and characters? Would Game of Thrones be the same if Ramsay didn’t do all his horrible stuff?

Though calls! We have our advice on how to tackle it. Let us know what you think. 


Something To Think About Before Writing That “Edgy” Rape Scene

Why are you writing a rape scene?

Rape Scenes Aren’t Just Awful. They’re Lazy Writing


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30-Day Author by Kevin Tumlinson and Creative Writing Career 2 by Justin Sloan and Stephan Bugaj


4 thoughts on “Sex and Violence in Your Fiction

  1. I wish you guys would have included some varied voices for this one. It’s an important topic and I was really hoping to hear a new debate.

    I think it’s important to remember everything that appears in media is entertainment. Including rape. Just as some people prefer to feel horrified by horror, some people prefer to feel violation, pity, rage, or perversion, depending from what perspective a rape is portrayed. I think that just as some people steer clear of horror fiction because they don’t want to be afraid, we should expect the audience to self-select on whether or not they’ll read a book featuring rape. I think the big problem–and why we don’t have people up in arms over graphic horror–is that we haven’t codified perversity into a genre, so it often comes as a surprise to readers.

    As to if a given writer should write rape (and writing it well), it should be up to the author to answer two questions: 1) Is it necessary? 2) Does it hurt to write it? Because if you aren’t willing to embody the character experiencing the rape, you aren’t sensitive enough to expect another to read your depiction of it.

    All that said, I wholeheartedly believe the more people want to hush up a subject, the more important it is for artists to explore it. Artists exist to expand the boundaries of public perception. In that sense, I appreciate you guys turning the debate from whether we should write about rape to why we should.

  2. Haha, yes… I get where people are coming from, so not a big deal for me – I don’t like watching a lot of horror, because I just don’t want that stuff in my mind EVER. Probably the same idea.

    Oh, and thanks for the interest in the book 🙂 Hope you love it and leave an awesome review.

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