Bare Back Magazine:   I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for
interviewing with Bare Back Magazine. Can you tell us about your

Matthew Dyne:  I was a middle-class Jewish kid who grew up in Brooklyn. I went to a
public elementary school run by Irish Catholic women who seemed one step removed
from the sisterhood, and then I went to Stuyvesant High School, in Manhattan, a school
to which one had to compete to get in. I studied electrical engineering at Cornell
University, so, excepting elementary school, I had a world-class education.

Though I have no interest in organized religion, I am Jewish, and Jewish culture values,
sometimes pathologically, intellectual achievement. I have an autobiographical story
written by my great grandmother, translated from archaic Yiddish and Russian, in which
as she is going to meet her future husband for the first time. It was an arranged
marriage—not a woman’s right to choose—and she muses that she doesn’t care what
he looks like or how much money he has as long as he is learned. When her son, my
grandfather, was five years old his parents sent him far from home to be raised by his
grandfather, a famous rabbinical scholar. No wonder my grandfather was so screwed
up, but I’m probably lucky he was, because my father rebelled and became everything
my grandfather wasn’t—loving, self-effacing, and generous.

I wasn’t a great student—I once said to my mother that I was at the top of the bottom
third of my class—but Cornell, to its credit, recognized that I had a few things going for
me that were out of the ordinary. I had travelled, on my own, to Israel when I was
fifteen, and when sixteen I spent the summer in Provincetown working in my uncle’s art
gallery where I gained an appreciation for art and met many famous artists. In my
college admission essays I wrote about these experiences, and, apparently, I wrote well
enough that someone was impressed. I like to think Cornell’s decision was justified, for
in my career I twice achieved first place finishes in international electronic hardware
design competitions, and I am an inventor of a graphic arts patent that describes a
specialized form of data compression. In short, I am not academically inclined but
blessed with a good mix of right and left brain capabilities.

I went to college in the sixties and became a hippie and moved to northern Vermont
where I lived for nearly twenty years. During that time I met my wife, and we were
together for ten years and had two children before we legally married. Our children,
third and fourth graders, signed as witnesses on our marriage license, and we might
still be unmarried if it were not for the need to both have health insurance.

Eventually, for better schools and work opportunities, we moved to Massachusetts.

Bare Back Magazine:   How long have you been writing stories? And what was
the name of the very first story that you remember writing --what was it about?

Matthew Dyne: I wrote my first story at age fifteen when I was in Israel. Israel was, and
still is, a country at war, and men and women were, and still are, conscripted for military
service at age eighteen. Prior to that age some young people go on quasi-military
expeditions—hikes and overnight camping, and I went on such a journey. We didn’t
have great amounts of food or water, the terrain was rough, and the climate was hot
and dry. The experience was grueling, and the language barrier, though I spoke a little
Hebrew and the other kids spoke a little English, isolated me.

When we came back I wrote my first story, about these experiences, and later I wrote
other stories that weren’t fiction. My first college story also related something that
happened to me. It was about going on a car ride with a friend and his girlfriend. I was
driving and not drinking, but she was drinking and got so drunk that when we got stuck
in a bumper-to-bumper traffic jam in the middle of the George Washington Bridge she
got out of the car and started running down the highway. It took some doing to capture
her and get her back in the car before we might be noticed by the police.

This story got good reviews in writing class—it was an exciting adventure, but it was
pointed out that the story had a weak ending—we took her home and the tale petered
out. Learning how to write fictional stories and good endings took practice.

Bare Back Magazine:  How did you become interested in writing erotica?

Matthew Dyne: Before I met my future wife I lived in Vermont and worked on aircraft
electronics to avoid the draft and not get sent to Vietnam. When I was twenty-six I was
no longer eligible for the draft, I quit my job designing instruments of death and
destruction, and for a year I travelled. I briefly stopped in Japan, and then I went to
Thailand and lived for two months on an island on which I was the only nonnative. I
learned to speak Thai, in rudimentary fashion.

This was in 1973, the Vietnam War was still going on, and Cambodia was being illegally
bombed from at least one US base in Thailand. One day I met a bunch of GIs and their
Thai girlfriends. There was an unattached girl with them, and she spoke pretty good
English and invited me back to her bungalow that was near the American airbase. I told
her right off, “I don’t do sex for money,” and she assured me that that was okay with
her, she wasn’t offering sex and wasn’t asking for money.

I spent three days with her, we did have sex, and I did wind up giving her some money,
for room and board, not for sex, and I learned something about life on a US military
base in a foreign country during wartime and about how local women are affected.

I wrote of this experience, which was minimally erotic, but the story and the reality were
much more complicated than soldiers simply buying and fucking prostitutes. The first
question I ask is: was I rationalizing, or did I pay a prostitute for sex? Then I explore:
who is or isn’t a prostitute is not simple—even in wartime the forms of relationships
between soldiers and local women are varied. Not all are unhealthy. I also point out that
the effect of soldiers on a foreign culture can be profound—the scene I describe and
its financial success, for men, not women, was what precipitated Thailand’s sex trade,
sex tourism, and the abduction and sexual slavery that persist today.

My Thailand story has never published, and though it is about sex and relationships I
don’t consider it erotica. It is closer to journalism, and it’s well written. I just don’t know
where to put it.

Doing a good job raising children put a hold on my writing, and though I wrote a few
short stories and some travelogues it wasn’t until 2003 that I once again felt the muse. I
started writing a short story, and it turned into a novel. I spoke to an agent, but he said
that the chances of an unknown writer publishing a novel were nil, and I believed him. I
didn’t pursue publishing this work, and in retrospect the novel is crap.

Though I didn’t publish my first novel I wondered how good a writer I was, and I decided
to submit some writing, somewhere, to see what kind of reviews I’d get. I looked around
on the Web and discovered that more erotica was being written and published than any
other kind of fiction. I wrote two stories, put them on Literotica, and got scores of 4.6
out of 5.0.

Though my scores were good, I didn’t consider them true marks of recognition. For true
recognition I wanted someone to pay me for my writing. I discovered the Erotic Readers
& Writers Association and its Call for submissions page:

Using this resource I went about picking a web site to which to submit a story, and I
decided on has high standards, and the nice folks
there accepted my story, which was about five guys who lived in Vermont, had finished
a hot day of haying, and went to a quarry, a well known skinny-dipping spot that really
exists, to swim and, hopefully, see some naked girls. Needless to say, a couple of
young women appear and strip. There was no gang bang, but the girls, one lesbian,
one bi, had a good time with each other and let the guys watch. Ruthie’s editors
characterized my story as having “a delightful innocence.”

Bare Back Magazine:  Do you see yourself writing as a career on a full-time

Matthew Dyne: I’ve been an electrical engineer for forty years, and my work is creative,
and I’m well paid for it. At my age I’d better stick with it. I would like to publish a novel in
print, and if it became successful I’d try to do it again, but engineers are good
estimators, and I assign success as a novelist a low probability.

Bare Back Magazine:  Would you like to write a different genre than you do
now, or sub-genre?

Matthew Dyne: As a writer of erotica I wanted to know the truth behind the stereotype
that men are always willing—anyplace, anytime, with anyone—and women are more
sexually reserved. I know that many of you women will laugh at that, at least at the part
about women being sexually reserved, but do you know the real answer to the
question?  Masters and Johnson, in their book Heterosexuality, say that on average
men and women like sex equally, but how much one is interested in sex varies greatly
among individuals. I can see the truth in that. I know men who don’t seem especially
interested and women who can never get enough.

I’ve always had a high interest in sex—doing it and writing about it—and I’m sure my
arousal, on some level, will continue to inspire me to write sexy stories. However, there
is a limited market for sexually explicit writing where one, at best, can earn more than a
dollar an hour. As far as other genres, I have some irons in the fire, but I’ll get to that.

Bare Back Magazine:  How do you find the time to write, especially since you
have another career outside of writing? Is it difficult to find a muse?

Matthew Dyne: It’s not difficult to find a muse. We’re bombarded with sexual thoughts
and images, soft and hardcore fantasies are but a click away, and I have a lifetime of
experiences to draw from. I find coming up with ideas for stories easy.

For example, I know a little bit about art, and I took the following as a starting point and
wrote Leslie Loves Lavender.

A women works as an art restorer and is sent, by her employer, to a conference in
Cannes. Just before she goes a new employee is hired as an assistant, and both
women get to go to Cannes. The teaser is: Katie’s boss warns her about the
conference in Cannes, “Business first, then you can have fun.” Katie replies, “Trust me.
I won’t get into any trouble.” Then, along comes Leslie…

Once I have a premise I begin to develop characters and plot. I imagined Katie as
worldly and sexually experienced. Her mother and grandmother both loved sex and
weren’t shy talking about it. To develop sexual tension I decided Leslie should be
inexperienced. Why was she inexperienced? Because, I thought, her parents are
fundamentalist ministers. That, in turn, led me to make Leslie an expert in religious art,
which is why she was hired.

Leslie was sexually repressed, at least until she went to art school. If her parents knew
what art school was like they never would have allowed her to go. When she goes to
her first drawing class and has to draw a nude male model… She couldn’t bring herself
to draw his penis, but her instructor made her, and the floodgates burst. That day she
brought herself to her first orgasm. Then, later…

The professor was an old guy, definitely past his prime. Maybe he couldn’t get it up at
all any more, but, whatever his reasons, he liked to titillate, and he especially liked to
titillate the women. The fourth week of class he introduced a collection of slave
paintings; by Gerome, Rosati, and others, and then he got the life drawing teacher to
talk one of his models into being tied and displayed in a mock slave market, completely
naked. They raised her arms and tied her stretched between two pillars. The professor
outlined an imaginary scenario: he had the model turn to look over her shoulder,
petrified with fear of an imaginary crowd of men approaching her, led by her master,
accompanied by a slave master carrying a fierce whip. It was the kind of modeling Katie
would have loved to do.

Leslie runs home and really learns how to masturbate, which she was getting the hang
of after drawing the male model.

The women are abducted by a bunch of bad men, but in my stories there is never any
rape, though the women are forced to put on a show for The Sons of France, an
organization associated with a fundamentalist church. What this story is really about is
the blossoming of love between the two women. At the end, Leslie, previously meek,
uses her formidable skill as a religious scholar and as a preacher, learned from her
parents, and she becomes a messenger from God. She turns into a powerhouse of
righteousness—the reincarnation of the only female prophet, Deborah, and the tables
are turned in an explosive finish.

In my stories the men may be nasty or nice, but the women are always smart, hard
working, competent, and they always come out on top, figuratively and sometimes
literally, in the end.

When I write I know almost as little about where the story will go as the reader. I may
have general ideas, and I sometimes know, in advance, my ending, but for the most
part the characters and plot unfold and are reveled, paragraph by paragraph, chapter
by chapter, starting at the beginning and progressing to the end. I never skip around—
leaving holes makes me nervous. Linear thinking is how I design electronics, too.

I made a quick count, and almost half my stories have main characters that are women,
almost half have main characters that are men and women, and only a few have main
characters that are men. I like writing about women, and that parallels what arouses me
in real life. In real life I’m much more aroused by giving, to women, than receiving. A BJ
may be nice, but giving a massage makes me much harder.

How do I find the time to write? I write in the evening, instead of watching TV, and on
weekends, though I have responsibilities and other pursuits, and I don’t like to abandon
my wife, though we both take time for ourselves. Also, I am at work ten hours a day,
and I can take an hour or even two for myself if I don’t abuse the privilege.

Bare Back Magazine:   What kind of stories do you enjoy reading? And who are
your favorite authors?

Matthew Dyne: Above all I want to be entertained, and when I write that’s what I aim for.
Heroes and heroines falling in love and villains getting their just desserts are my cup of
tea. Love, mystery, sex, violence, and revenge are good. Escapism? Yes. Highfalutin
thinking I’ll leave to others, but give me quality, always.

Favorite authors? Here are some that come to mind:
•        Annie Proulx, who wrote The Shipping News and Brokeback Mountain.
•        Norman Mailer, who, for all his faults, won two Pulitzers and wrote the first erotic
story I ever read—The Time of Her Time.
•        I liked Hemingway when I was a young man, not as much any more, but he wrote
with great skill.
•        Tolkien, who wrote the greatest fantasy adventure ever written.
•        Frank McCourt—Angela’s Ashes is an entertaining biography, and Teacher Man
takes place in Stuyvesant, my high school, a few years after I left it.
•        Richard Feinman, Nobel Prize winning physicist. His biographical stories are a
riot, and he’s a great scientist with a knack for making the complicated simple.
•        Carl Sagen and others who write about the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.
•        Robert Parker—pure and simple escapist detective fiction.

Bare Back Magazine:   What do you enjoy doing in your spare time (besides
writing and reading of course)?

Matthew Dyne: I work on my house, mostly woodworking but also stone construction,
which is a ball-buster, but along with swimming it keeps me in shape. When working
with stone I don’t use concrete. I do what is called dry stone construction, and the stone
makes exceptionally beautiful walls that will far outlast me and my writing.

I’m musical—I play the clarinet and sing pretty well—not at the same time, and I recently
learned to play guitar in a classical or finger picking style. I usually play over morning
coffee. Then I pack my lunch and go to work.

Bare Back Magazine:   Do you have any up and coming projects that you would
like to tell our readers about and what can we expect from any of those

Matthew Dyne: Erotica is fun, but it’s not the kind of writing I can freely share, for not
everyone I know wants to read my sexual fantasies, and neither do I don’t want them to.
Recently I wrote a fantasy novella named Elf Girl. It’s aimed at young teens, and it has
no explicit sex though there is romance, a scene with nudity, a reference to touching,
and a young couple, girlfriend and boyfriend, in bed together though only to sleep. It is
also a story with delightful innocence.

In Elf Girl there are two special elf girls, but we don’t find out about the second one until
later in the story. The novella is currently 55,000 words and is a complete story with a
dynamite ending, but my intention is to add a second half and to try to find a fantasy
publisher to put the novel into print.

On the erotic side I am just finishing the most sexually arousing story I have ever
written. It is about a woman who cheats, but only one time, for the purpose, she says,
of sex therapy. I’m going to try to sell it, maybe to Harlequin as a Spice Brief. If
Harlequin won’t take it then I may give it to RuthiesClub.

As far as selling erotica to larger and better paying outlets, here’s a brief tale. I wrote
about a young woman who helped her neighbor put flashing around the foundation of
his house. He was around forty, and she was in college, but she never had a father, he
was good to her, and she was attracted. At night she came back to his house and said
she was a virgin and asked the man to be her first. He was somewhat reluctant, but he
felt honored and, well, you know—there was no way he could resist. He had experience
and was a nice guy, kind of like me, and he knew that the key to good sex, especially
with an inexperienced woman, was building trust, relaxation, and lubrication. He gave
the girl a bath, they took their time, and they made love. There is a surprise ending that
I won’t give away.

Bare Back Magazine:   Let's talk about your story Lily and The Vine Oaks; how
you came up with the concept for the story? In a few words, what can readers
expect from the story?

Matthew Dyne: RuthiesClub was planning a theme week and asked its writers for Fairy
Tale stories. I didn’t think I could write a good Fairy Tale, but I was looking, online, at
illustrations of two artists, a couple living in Argentina who had illustrated a RuthiesClub
story of mine. When I saw the following set of drawings I got the idea for Lily and the
Vine Oaks.

Note that in this set of drawings the girls are not having fun, but in Lily and the Vine
Oaks, though Lily has a moderately unpleasant first experience, when she is taken by a
mean vine oak, she later comes to fall in love with a tree boyfriend and what he does
for her.

What I wanted to do for readers is to create a believable make-believe world and
introduce them to an entirely new sexual experience. And, as usual, I wanted to titillate
and entertain.

Bare Back Magazine:  How do you see yourself in five to ten years?

Matthew Dyne: In a few years I’ll retire from engineering and get to spend more time on
my hobbies—woodwork, stone walls, writing, music, visiting art museums, travelling,
and maybe a little engineering on the side. Also, in August I’m expecting my first

Bare Back Magazine:  Thank you Matthew for interviewing with Bare Back
Matthew Dyne is a savvy native New Yorker with very humble beginnings. He is a Cornell University graduate.
and now resides in Massachusetts, where he works full time as an electrical engineer. Matthew has also found
success writing stories on a part time basis. His story, Lily and The Vine Oaks is featured in Bare Back
Magazine's anthology,
Fairy Tales Can Come True.

Matthew's interview is quite interesting --you will learn a lot about him and what makes him so unique.

Check out the interview...
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Interviewed by Natasha
© August 2009