You Never Forget Your First Time

Remember what it was like?  The excitement, the guilt, the vague sense of embarrassment…not to mention the potential to get caught, which was an aphrodisiac in and of itself.  Maybe you were in bed after lights-out or hidden away in a closet, but you were probably alone with no one but James or Edward or Rex.  Maybe you weren’t quite sure what was going on, because you were twelve years old and still didn’t understand why you weren’t allowed to watch all of Dirty Dancing, but you knew you’d never be the same again.

Um, I’m talking about your first romance novel, of course.  Sheesh.  What were you thinking?

My first romance novel (that I can remember) was Heather Graham’s “Sweet Savage Eden.”  I have no idea how it came to be in my possession (although I suspect I used my allowance to buy it at Haslam’s in St. Pete during one of our many family trips to the bookstore), but the novel opened my eyes to a lot of things.  A lot of big things.

A lot of big, bulging things.

Basic plot?  Boy mistakes girl for prostitute, deflowers her, marries her, knocks her up, falls in love with her, all in that order.  The late 80’s/early 90’s were the dying days of the classic bodice-rippers, when “no” meant “yes” and the women learned to love it by the dawn’s early light.  Don’t take my word for it.  Check this out:

Get Yer Bodices Ripped Here

I’m not going to go so far as to say that everything I know about about sex came from romance novels, because that would do Judy Blume, Cosmopolitan and HBO a great disservice, but I certainly didn’t learn the really good stuff from sex-ed via the public education system.  Although if belted sanitary napkins ever come back in style, I could probably hook you up.

I think I’m off topic…and no doubt any guy who was reading this has now checked out.  All I was really trying to say is that that first romance novel leaves an impression, whether you fall in love with Mr. Darcy or with Fabio.  For me, it inspired an entire career.

So, being a naturally inquisitive person, I’m always interested to hear about other people’s experiences.  Even if you didn’t end up writing romance novels, you had to have at least picked one up at the store and flipped through it at some point.

C’mon.  There’s a first time for everyone.

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2 thoughts on “You Never Forget Your First Time

  1. Maggie says:

    Oh, I’m in love with this!! My first foray into ‘grown-up’ romance was Victoria Holt’s Menfreya in the Morning when I was 11. It’s historical fiction, secrets and lies and an old manor house. She wrote tons of those style books, with governesses who fall in love with the lord of the house, jewels that are cursed, etc.
    My first steamy bodice ripper? I can’t remember the title, but I remember the embarrassment. My mom gave it to me; I must’ve been 14 or so. I’ve been reading them ever since. I need the escape!

    Oh, and I totally am ready to hook you up on the belted sanitary napkin, too. One of my favorite books as a kid. I can’t wait until my girls are old enough to read it!

    1. krieli1 says:

      Victoria Holt was the queen!

      Lol – maybe we should try to get the belts back in style! Who needs super sleek tampons and paper thin pads when you can strap the equivalent of a phone book around your waist?

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