I once described one of my most enduring romantic fantasies to my husband. The fantasy was that Mr. One-For-Me, the right guy would be right in part because he would notice me first. Specifically, I would be dancing, and he would be enraptured (!). I’m still too embarrassed to tell the fantasy out loud to anyone but a licensed psychologist with excellent credentials. (Writing about it does not count as “out loud.”)
Husband helpfully pointed out that no man would behave in this manner. With 25 years of observing this one man, I trusted this information. Despite the crushing, lost feeling it left me with, I believe it still. Plus, smut and romance are written exclusively by women, so maybe it’s DNA.
This does not mean I’ve ceased dreaming it. Because the fantasy had played in my head for so long, there is a deep corner, a bend in the electrical rivers of thoughts and feelings racing through my brain, where it stays. Like a bit of trash that gets caught in an eddy along the banks of a stream, it hasn’t budged in 40 years and isn’t going anywhere.
What a predicament, though. To have fantasies, highly detailed ones too, but no one but another woman author to enact for you by writing erotic books that you read daily. Desperately seeking a man to play the man part. Where are you, man? Man! Man man man maaaan!
Let us consider in more detail an excerpt from Highlander Unchained:
Say the word and I will give you more pleasure than you can stand.
Who talks like that? I must state baldly: no one. But how clever is Monica McCarty and everyone else writing romances with highlanders in them? Because more pleasure than you can stand could definitely be spoken by someone in a dialect that’s older than London’s sewers. And if a medieval highlander swain does not typically talk about giving you pleasure, exactly, there’s always the subtitles to imagine might appear under him as he speaks. He might be saying something about pleasure and someone, between the two of you, having it.