Once upon a time there was a woman who longed for male attention and affection. Instead of going out to find The One – she wrote a bunch of erotic novels instead.
The story itself began as fan-fiction, paying homage to the teen sensation Twilight, using character names Bella Swan and Edward Cullen as the root of her story. When the ideas kept flowing, James decided to tackle it as her own piece of work. After releasing her trilogy of stories as an e-book there was high-demand for a printed version.
And this brings us to Australia. Victoria to be exact, where the novels – nicknamed “Mommy Porn” by some news outlets – are practically falling off the shelves of bookstores and into ladies shopping baskets, beating bestsellers like The Hunger Games.
But why are people getting so antsy?
According to a number of reviews, the trilogy of books surrounding the sexual affair between the handsome billionaire Christian Grey, and the naive graduate Anastasia Steele (could the names be any more obvious?) are a jolting and dreadful bunch of words thrown together with nothing but the alluring promise of sex to keep you turning the pages.
Well, excuse me for one minute while I race out and buy a copy.
According to The Herald Sun, this paperback success is a bit of a mystery. The idea of a woman sitting across from you on the train reading romantic erotica on her way to work is an odd one. With its booming success, we all know what 50 Shades is really about, at least with the privacy of an e-book they might not get such awkward looks.
But perhaps that’s what it’s all about? Maybe this 21st century Mills and Boon creation is literary empowerment for women, giving them a chance to say “I want this, and I don’t care who knows.”
Could the evidently innocent Miss Steele be the voice of a new generation of women?
With more than 10 million copies sold, and the promise of a film adaptation, this could be true.
Whatever the case, James will be laughing all the way to the bank, with her explicit imagination making her just as wealthy as her smouldering lead male, how ironic.