A few weeks back we posted our review of Fifty Writers on Fifty Shades, a collection offering up fifty different perspectives on the 50 Shades phenomenon. Today we bring you 20 questions with sexuality writer and sex educator Midori, author of the essay “Fifty Shades Of Snark.” Midori’s piece looks at the kink community’s reaction to the 50 Shades phenomenon (which is quite critical) and tempers that with her own early adventures in the thrill of viewing erotica, creating a balanced and realistic view at the appeal of the series. Spend a little extra time with Midori in her amazing Midori’s Expert Guide To Sensual Bondage!
1. How (and when) did you get started teaching bedroom skills and sexuality coaching?
In the mid 90’s I volunteered as peer educator for HIV education and safer sex in San Francisco. Shortly after that, I began writing sexual advice columns for various magazine and papers—always with the objective of giving people permission to shed shame and have smarter, safer, and steamier sex.
Slowly I began teaching classes in the local area. Soon I discovered I had a talent for public speaking, coaching, and designing effective and entertaining classes to help people live fulfilling erotic lives. In 2001 I became a full-time traveling sexuality educator.
The past few years my weekend intensive programs, including ForteFemme: Women’s Dominance Weekend Intensive and Rope Bondage Dojo, have really gained popularity. Recently, Skype and other technology have made it easier for me to help my students with ongoing coaching. It’s unbelievably exciting to be part of people’s lives as they explore, blossom, and grow into living fully!
2. If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?
Adventure travel guide in exotic hinterlands, guiding people to achieve new peaks, experience fresh sensations, and see wondrous sights!
(Hmmm. Come to think of it, whether in the wilds of jungles and caverns or the wilds of bedroom adventures, I’m drawn to the same thing!)
3. What’s the best thing you’ve learned or best advice you’ve received from the erotic industry?
If it turns you on, someone else out there is turned on by it too!
4. What’s the funniest thing that’s happened while working as a sexuality educator and coach?
Conversations with TSA agents as they open my luggage and find my teaching props! Then they want to come to my classes.
5. What do you think is the biggest misconception about women in the adult industry?
A common misconception about women in the adult industry is that it’s an occupation of last resort. While it may be for some, for many it’s a chosen occupation providing an outlet for creativity, agency, and flexible hours.
6. What did you do today?
Taught a group of erotic rope bondage enthusiasts the joys of passionate movement and hot rope tricks.
7. What would you rather have done today?
A lot more of #6 and then go to the kinky play party happening tonight — and a lot less office work, like work coordination e-mails and answering 20 questions.
8. If you could do a movie with anyone (living or brought back from the dead) who would it be?
Veronica Franco, Michel Foucault, Freddy Mercury, Pharaoh Hatshepsut
9. Who is your favorite adult performer?
Nina Hartley, Sinnamon Love, Adrianna Nicole, Madison Young. Why? They’re my friends and I just think they’re wonderful people! I like hanging out them.
10. You’ve got 20 bucks left to your name; what would you do with it?
Make “stone soup” with my most beloved friends.
11. If you were president, what’s the first thing you’d change?
Reform the electoral college system, and make voting mandatory for all adults with fiscal penalty for failure to comply. Vote!
12. What’s the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done?
Having to read Fifty Shades on an airplane while researching for this book is one of the most embarrassing things I’ve done lately. I’ve read tons of sex-filled filth during flights, but nothing made me feel more uncomfortable than the possibility of people thinking I willingly chose to read this quality of writing.
13. Which is your favorite project that you’ve worked on?
ForteFemme: Women’s Dominance Weekend Intensive!
Creating an environment and program to help women discover and tap into their authentic power source within, and to find fulfillment in a mutually supportive experience has been deeply satisfying. Watching these amazing women blossom into their fuller potential—nothing like it. Not even chocolate comes close to this.
14. If you could have 1 superpower what would it be?
Cause others to experience deep and profound kindness towards others.
15. Meat or veggie?
16. What is your favorite book?
Like Water for Chocolate by Gabriel García Márquez
17. What is your biggest pet peeve?
Litter bugs. Such a simple act exposes a person as being deeply selfish and immature.
18. What is your best piece of sex advice for women?
Go ahead, be sexually selfish and ask for what you want! Put yourself first, everything and everyone else comes from that.
19. What is your favorite adult movie?
As a pre-teen in Japan I got a peek at Madame Emmanuel on late night TV. If I had to name a favorite adult film, it would be that.
I don’t have a favorite contemporary adult film, but some of my most favorite sex scenes are in these movies…
• Unbearable Lightness of Being
• Mr. & Mrs. Smith
• The Hunger
20. Tell me one thing you’ve never told anyone else.
I do not have one of those naturally beautiful faces and bodies. I accept that my physical “package” is ordinary. At the same time, I know that I have developed myself into an attractive person, and continue to do so.
Check out Midori’s essay in Fifty Writers On Fifty Shades of Grey and her work on the screen in Midori’s Expert Guide To Sensual Bondage!
And follow Midori on Twitter!
Also take a look at our interview with Fifty Writers on Fifty Shades contributor Marci Hirsch!