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On Writing Sex and Taboo

Aug 20
Aug 20
9:30AM - 12:30PM CST
Loie Rawding
The Porch HQ, 2811 Dogwood Pl., Nashville, TN 37204
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“On its own terms, sex is information,” writes Alexander Chee, and yet time and time again talented, hard-working writers shy away from scenes of sexual content and taboo. Effectively writing the erotic is, indeed, one of the most difficult tasks in our craft, but its consideration is essential if we hope to achieve our most honest and important work. How do you write a consensual scene of sexual pleasure? How do you approach sexuality and gender, or pain and pleasure? In what ways can you push the boundaries of what is considered safe, exploring emotional and physical truths in the social and cultural context of our time?

In this workshop, we will look at literary erotic encounters and criticism from Audre Lorde, Natalie Diaz, Melissa Febos, Raven Leilani, and others. We will perform writing exercises to broaden our horizons and support each other with intimate discussion. Sharing any personal material in completely voluntary. Open to all genres.

Note: This class is scheduled to take place in person at Porch HQ. You must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to participate, and we will enroll a maximum of 10 participants. Masks are not required at this time, though we will revisit this policy as needed. Check our website and this listing for details before you attend class.

Loie Rawding grew up on an island off the coast of Maine. After studying dance and theater in Boston and New York, she received an MFA in Fiction from the University of Colorado. In 2020, Loie's debut novel, Tight Little Vocal Cords, was published by KERNPUNKT Press. The book was a Finalist for the Big Other Book Awards, as well as featured in Entropy’s Best Books of 2020-2021 and one of Lambda Literary’s Most Anticipated Books. Other writing has been featured in SAND (Berlin), 3:AM Magazine, The Ekphrastic Review (Toronto), Heavy Feather Review, The Wanderer, and Map Literary, among others. For more information, you can find her at:

What Our Students Say

“Loie was a terrific instructor. She built a strong rapport immediately with her students and led reflective discussions. Her written reviews are thorough and it is clear she puts a significant amount of time into the organization of the class. I was inspired and challenged by her comments and with each session.”

“Loie was wonderful. She treated everyone's work with equal seriousness and insight, fostered a supportive atmosphere among the group, and really motivated us to do our best work. I'll absolutely recommend her classes to others.”

“Loie is so supportive. She forced us all to really dig deep into what story we were all trying to tell in our first drafts. I’m thankful for all the feedback and advice on how to pursue publishing that she was able to offer. I’d love to take another class from her again!”

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