Does Erotic Romance Still Hold a Stigma?

Allie Ritch, author

“Oh, you write those kinds of books.” Many romance writers, and those who write spicier works especially, have run into comments like that over the years. Since romance is predominantly written and read by women, this could be a carryover from when literature was male-dominated and the “scribblings” of the softer sex were considered fluff. The truth is there’s probably the same proportion of truly brilliant books to not-so-brilliant in the romance genre as in every other genre, heat level notwithstanding. In a modern society that has also brought us R-rated movies, thongs, and Viagra, I suspect the population of prudish readers has diminished. I’m curious, though, to know if erotic romance still holds a stigma. My personal answer would be yes, but it’s diminishing over time. I posed this question to some author friends to get their take on the issue, and here is what they had to say:

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