Friday, November 21, 2008

Bad Sex in Fiction

It’s time, once again, for the Literary Review’s Bad Sex in Fiction award. This year’s shortlist is reported in the Guardian along with several of the offending passages. Many of the examples are both terrible and hilarious. For example, novelist Paulo Coelho in his novel Brida describes sex in a way that makes it sound like a bad nature documentary:
At last, she could no longer control the world around her … her five senses seemed to break free and she wasn't strong enough to hold on to them. As if struck by a sacred bolt of lightning, she unleashed them, and the world, the seagulls, the taste of salt, the hard earth, the smell of the sea, the clouds, all disappeared, and in their place appeared a vast gold light, which grew and grew until it touched the most distant star in the galaxy.
The other examples are worth checking out for a good laugh.


Anna van Gelderen said...

Wow! I had no idea Coelho's writing was this bad.
And thanks for the link: it was great fun. My vote goes to the 'weeping orifice' with the 'whiffs of onion soup'. Who would ever have thought of combining the two?

Stephanie said...

If we're going to talk terrible sex scenes, I'd like to point you all towards a book called Project Chick, by Nikki Turner. Never in my life have I been so appalled and turned OFF by bad writing about sex.

Link to my review, which includes a few God-awful quotes: