Posted at 10:27 on 22 Sep 2017 by Pandora / Blake
I've had great fun lately recording episodes for two excellent podcasts, which are coming out imminently - do look out for them! I spent some time in conversation with Dave Pickering for 'Getting Better Acquainted' a couple of weeks ago. The podcast is on Soundcloud and you can listen to previous episodes here. It's described as part-interview show, part oral history project and part autobiography through conversation. There's some really cool episodes out already - I recommend listening to the one with Meg-John and Justin, and the one with Sadia Azmat (like episodes of Friends, only more interesting and politically relevant). I find it stimulating and enjoyable; well-paced conversations with interesting people about interesting topics. I'm looking forward to catching up with more of the back catalogue.
Dave's a fantastic host; he really put me at ease and I felt very comfortable talking about all sorts of things with him. As a result I went into a little bit more detail with him about certain aspects of my life which I have not revealed before, so when this podcast comes out it will contain an announcement which I think will be news to most of you. My episode is coming out on 4th October - I'm not going to say any more about it just yet, just that there is something coming which will enable everyone to get to know me a little bit better :)
The second podcast I've appeared on recently is Story etc. It's a relatively new, high-production podcast of which there are six episodes so far, on the topic of fiction. Each episode has a theme - previous themes have been inclusion, myth, secrets, science, interaction, and music - and contains a mixture of original creative writing, and interviews with a number people who have got something to contribute on that topic.
Episode 7 should be out any day now, and - well, given they wanted to talk to me, perhaps it's not surprising that the topic was Sex. But although I talk about sex a lot, this offered me something new. I was asked to talk about Sex in Fiction from my perspective as a porn maker. It was really enjoyable talking about my work as fiction. I don't normally get the opportunity to do so; people are very interested in the reality of porn, talking about the politics of it and the conditions on set, but it's not often I get the chance to really just talk about it as make-believe, as fiction. Often I think porn isn't given credit as being fictional - people get wrapped up in the fact that the performers are having actual sex and so they treat it as if was a documentary (and of course docu-porn can be fantastic), but the power of porn is often in its creativity as fiction. In my work I'm creating a story world, populating it with characters from my imagination, and that is one of the things that makes it feel safe for me to explore darker themes.
So I found it affirming and liberating to have the fiction-ness of porn, and my porn in particular, acknowledged. We had a great conversation about what I'm trying to do with my work, and what I think porn as fiction can achieve.
We did delve into politics as well, of course - I mean this is me so it would be weird if we hadn't. We talked about how sex is portrayed in literary fiction, the boundaries between fantasy and reality, and where I think written erotica can do better.
All in all it was a fantastic conversation. I think we talked for about an hour, and the resulting interview snippet for the podcast is probably going to be edited down to about 10-15 minutes. I'm hoping to get a recording of the whole piece to release to you as exclusive content - I'll see what I can do.
About ten years ago when I first started working as a porn performer, blogs were the primary means of communication with an audience. I have been writing here since then, although these days I use it more for talking about political topics and activism than as a personal journal. It seems however that podcasts are increasingly becoming the medium du jour to create an intimate connection with an audience. There's something about conversation, making a recording in a private home, and then hearing it as a voice speaking intimately in one's ear, that makes the communciation a bit more personal.
I really enjoyed recording both of these podcasts; I think it's a really exciting medium that brings complexity and humanity back into online discourse in a way that is a refreshing antidote to the anonymity and brusqueness of Twitter. (Not to mention they are delightfully tricky to censor!)
I have to say I'm tempted to start my own, but of course I have limited time - and what opportunities I do have to work on political commentary is probably better spent wrangling with those in Westminster who could use some advice about how to not cock things up worse than they already have.
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