Here is my first, and probably only, sex column. Ideally, sex is about pleasure. Two people (we’ll leave it at two) get together and seek pleasure. This feels good, that feels good, now this, and that – no not that – but yes that, and that, and that, and—

Baby. Which is to say, creation. That it doesn’t always make babies, or sometimes can’t make babies, isn’t the point. The point is that to make a baby, which is one of our most fundamental creative acts, we seek pleasure.

But humans are geniuses at taking the pleasure out of things, even sex. Sex can be no fun at all, and we can still make a baby. Or maybe it isn’t even sex but something quite awful that happens to look like sex, and still we might make a baby. That’s just how creative we are.

In this way, sex is a giant, red, blinking, garish, neon sign of a clue about the true nature of creativity: It is supposed to feel good. To make a baby, we seek pleasure in one another. Why do we think writing, or drawing, or talking, or cooking are any different? What better way to create a world that pleases us than seeking pleasure in what we create?

I understand that to finish a book you must be able to treat your writing like a job, which is something adults have, and adults can’t bother themselves forever with fun and pleasure because we’re busy, busy, busy and if all we cared about was pleasure, well, we sure as Hell wouldn’t do this, would we? Oh, but I think we would. Life itself is our first and last partner. Life would deny us no pleasure unless we asked it to in the name of preventing death. Meanwhile, pleasure pulses within every moment, ready to awaken with the first touch of thought.

9781935961994-Perfect_CS.inddWrite Within Yourself: An Author's Companion. "A book to keep nearby whenever your writer's spirit needs feeding." Deb Caletti.

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