Authors have been writing the words of hook-ups for centuries. If you don’t believe me, read Shakespeare’s Sonnets. That is one sexy collection. So that got me thinking: I can’t be the only one who’s been in love with someone’s words, a character, or an author, and according to the Books are Sexy survey, I’m not. 65% have received a love poem and 30% of us have quoted authors such as Michael Ondaatje, Aristotle, Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Frost, and someone “quoted some Buddhist stuff” to a guy in a theory class “because he was hot.” Whatever works.
Some of us have fantasized about authors too. Saul Williams, Ken Follett, Jonathan Kellerman, Virginia Woolf, and our very own Pinch of Salt-ers Michael Crummey and Chad Pelley made the list.
Disappointed, one reader commented that “based on this question, I think I need to meet more authors.” It’s not about the fit of someone’s jeans or how cute they look in glasses, it’s about connecting with the words or the work, feeling like what you’re reading is meant for you. One reader hit the G-spot of the argument when s/he thought it was “definitely sexy to imagine the author paying attention to little ‘ol me.”
We don’t just fantasize about authors, we lust after characters too: Edward Cullen (Twilight), Ashlar (Lives of the Mayfair Witches), Jamie Fraser (Outlander), Nikki Fuller-Smith (Porno), Jacob Black (Twilight), Bram Shipley (The Stone Angel), Eric Northman (Sookie Stackhouse Series), Audrey Flowers (Come, Thou Tortoise), Holden Caulfield (The Catcher in the Rye), and Seth (Wicked Lovely) to name a few.
When asked the question, “if you could date any character or author who would it be?”, the answers varied from wanting to have a deep conversation to taking someone home. One reader would like to simply share a meal with Douglas Coupland and another wants a casual chat with Eckhart Tolle. The handsome Joseph Boyden got a nod because he is “smart and looks good”; character Michael Curry (Lives of the Mayfair Witches) because he’s “sensual, strong, manly yet sensitive and loyal.” My favourite response: the Gunslinger from the Dark Tower Series but only “if he had both of his hands.”
The smell of books, the stories they tell, the feel of them, it’s pretty sexy stuff, am I right? And the next time you’re at a bookstore, library, or classroom, take a look around. 80% of those surveyed said they have fantasized about having sex in a bookstore, classroom or library. 30% have lived that fantasy.