Interview with sex and adult entertainment journalist - C.J. Asher
In today’s interview series, We have C.J. Asher, a journalist who covers various subject matters and trending topics related to human sexuality.
C.J. is the guy behind Blog C.J.Asher.com. Monthly it's getting over 6,000 visitors. On his blog, C.J. covers all areas of human sexuality: gentlemen's club, adult film, the LGBTQ+ community, the BDSM lifestyle, sexual health.
C.J. has given a good amount of time in answering my interview questions. I’m really thankful to C.J. for accepting my interview request and for his time in answering my interview questions.
Marta M.: How did you become a journalist/blogger, and what first made you decide to become an erotic blogger?
C.J. Asher: I first started out blogging as a way to promote my debut erotic novel, Quarter Past Midnight, which I wrote several years ago. After I had written the novel and was trying to promote it, the marketing person who was helping me out suggested that I start a blog to help build an audience for my novel. I was initially rather hesitant, as I wanted to focus on fictional writing, but as I started to write more and cover the adult entertainment industry CJAsher.com grew and grew, now to over 6,000 monthly visitors. I’d consider myself a journalist more than a blogger now – as most of the content on my site is reposted and covers a variety of different topics – but I still share the same passion about sending a sex-positive message and educating everyone about human sexuality.
M.M: Tell us a little about CJAsher.com. Why the sexual topic? What is the idea behind it?
C.J. Asher: CJAsher.com started out as a blog to promote my debut novel, as I mentioned. The site started out as a few random postings on topics related to human sexuality, such as prostitution and gentlemen’s clubs, along with some gentlemen’s clubs reviews and interviews. My first big break came when I interviewed Dennis Hof, followed up shortly by Joanna Angel and a number of other celebrities within the world of adult entertainment. Over the years, as I interviewed more people and experienced more things, I slowly began to learn much more about the positive and enjoyable parts of human sexuality, but also many of the negative things, such as society’s stigmatization of sex workers, sex trafficking victims and the mistreatment of the LGBT community and their fight for equality and acceptance. While the “idea” behind CJAsher.com was to promote the enjoyment of sex and adult entertainment, my goal for it has evolved into having CJAsher.com be the best sex-positive news organization that promotes, supports and covers all areas of human sexuality: gentlemen's club, adult film, the LGBTQ+ community, the BDSM lifestyle, sexual health and everything else you can imagine!
M.M: What is the best part of your work?
C.J. Asher: I’d have to say it’s meeting so many amazing and inspirational people who are the antithesis of what society proclaims them to be. Whether it be someone as famous as brothel baron Dennis Hof or my friends Caroline and Jessica Kaplan, a married lesbian couple and entrepreneurs with their art website http://jcaress.com, I’ve been honored to meet people from all walks of life who have faced seemingly insurmountable challenges and can hold their heads up high to society’s pressure to change or conform.
M.M: What is most challenging about it?
C.J. Asher: Time and money! Human sexuality is constantly evolving; take, for instance, the rise of the transgender community’s efforts for acceptance and how much news coverage there has been over the past several years. There is so much news happening daily and so many amazing events to cover that it’s impossible to be able to do as many things as I’d like!
M.M: We can see that you write also books, from where did you draw inspiration for “Quarter Past Midnight”?
C.J. Asher: Back around ten years ago – way before CJAsher.com was even conceived – I found myself spending a lot of time (too much, if you ask my friends) at a local gentlemen’s club around Philly, Club Risqué. I developed the idea of writing a novel loosely based upon an exotic dancer. A lot of the subject matter in the book is inspired by real dancers and stories that I heard from dancers at that club and others.
M.M: What is it about?
C.J. Asher: Quarter Past Midnight is about a young woman named Kate who starts working as an exotic dancer at an upscale fictitious gentlemen’s club called Silhouettes, in order to make some money while looking for a white-collar job after moving to Philadelphia to leave her cheating boyfriend behind. After a particular rough day for this “rookie” dancer, her boss, the club’s manager, suggests that she go work for an eccentric older woman named Gretchen, who runs a lingerie shop from her home. It doesn’t take Kate long to realize that Gretchen’s lingerie business is a front for a high-end escort service. Kate slowly finds herself being pulled into the business – with its allures of money and power – and must decide how far she’ll get into it before she passes the point of no return.
M.M: Why did you start writing erotic fiction?
C.J. Asher: Honestly, before Quarter Past Midnight I’d never written anything longer than an essay in college! Once I committed to writing Quarter Past Midnight, I brainstormed the characters and concept for a while. I didn’t think I’d get past the first page… then after that, I didn’t think I’d get past the first chapter. About a month or so later, the 77,000+ manuscript was done! I have ideas to two sequels in mind; now I just need to find the time to write them!
M.M: Do you think sex sells?
C.J. Asher: Oh, certainly! Sex hasn’t sold as much as it did years ago – with scantily clad bikini models promoting everything from motorcycles to calendars to beer and even chicken wings (referencing Hooters, of course) back in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. There is certainly a lot of sexualization of women, such as sexualized young female singers that still draws people to consume products and services, which isn’t necessarily a good thing… take the sexualized violence against women that has given great ratings to Game of Thrones or pressure placed on young women to have the “perfect body,” leading them to eating disorders, for instance.
M.M: Anything else you would like to say to our readers?
C.J. Asher: Be happy with who you are, your body and your sexuality. If you aren’t, do something about it, but do it for YOU! If you need help or are struggling with these issues, there are people, groups and organizations out there that will help you. This may not seem like the most “fun” statements, but in a world where people are still fighting for their rights to live as they want regardless of sexual orientation, alternative sexual lifestyles, and gender identities, we need to be more accepting of people’s differences so that everyone can enjoy sex and their own sexuality without hatred or judgment.