When browsing Craigslist for writing jobs, it’s not uncommon to come across “internships” that sound like a pretty bad deal for the intern, but this one really takes the cake.
42-year-old erotica author Chad Leslie Peters is seeking a young woman to act out his last erotic novel with him in real time and help him write a second erotic novel about it. There’s no mention of pay (it’s an “internship job,” after all) but it should no doubt be a thrilling opportunity for exposure.
Here’s the ad in full (with annotations):
Author needs female participant for affair (for book project):
My name is Chad Leslie Peters and I am the author of the Amazon bestselling [self-published] novel, The Affair: a Thirty Day Experiment in Love, which reached the top twenty in the Amazon erotic category last year [current Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,668 Paid in Kindle Store].
The novel told the story of a 30 day erotic affair between an older man and his much younger lover. The “affair” began on the campus of a university much like USC and played out over several torrid weeks. You can find the book at Amazon by searching for “The Affair by Chad Leslie Peters”. You can sample it for free at the site. I will also send you a free copy if you like. [Or you can save some time and take my word for it that it reads like a less sexy version of 50 Shades Of Grey.]
I am preparing to write the sequel to “The Affair” and I need your help. I plan on writing a non-fiction version of “The Affair”. The book will detail every aspect of a mutually-agreed to [not rape!] romantic affair between myself and a young FEMALE lover (perhaps you), experienced over 30 days, as in the novel. The difference between the first book and this one will be verite: everything in this new volume will be the truth as both participants see it. If you agree to participate in this project, you will keep a diary of all of your thoughts, impressions and memories of the thirty day affair that we will share. I will then combine your written thoughts with my own to present the reader with two versions of the same erotic story. One love affair, as seen separately by the man and woman. [You will receive none of the ~$10/year I will make from Amazon Kindle sales.]
I am a serious writer; this project is meant to be taken seriously by the participant that I choose and by the readers, who will be able to read the fictional version beside the non-fiction story that we present together. This has never been done before and I am very excited at the prospect and possibilities. [We will be the first two people in the history of the world to have sex with each other just so we can write about it.]
If you are interested in applying to assist me on this book, which will be available through Amazon and possibly later on, Barnes and Noble.com, please write to me immediately.
I will make the selection based on a brief email correspondence with you. [Emails that are TL;DR will be deleted without reading.] After that we will speak on the telephone and I will furnish further details. Then we will meet for coffee to discuss the project further. I am looking for someone who is a very good writer [but not so good that you expect to be compensated for your work] (your writing will appear in the book) and preferably an English or writing Major. Please practice safe sex if you want to participate. You must be at least 20 years old to take part in the project. I hope I’ve piqued your interest and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Is it just me, or is this guy doing things backwards in every way possible? There are plenty of books about sex based on sex the author has already had, which, well, fine. I have written about my sex life, too. And there are plenty of other books based on some old perv’s fantasies, which other old pervs then enjoy. But to write a book based on a true story based on a book you’ve already written, based on your boring ass fantasy of fucking a 20-year-old girl? That, mister, is where I draw the line. Have we really fallen so far as a society that each self-styled “serious writer” cannot at least limit him or herself (and I’d like to point out it’s a him this time) to one incredibly narcissistic book per specific kind of sexual act?
There is also a huge missed opportunity here, because I would probably not mind reading a non-fiction book written by some crazy person who decided to try to recreate a work of literature that was actually good. Is The Affair really a more interesting candidate for documented cosplay than, say, Madame Bovary or A Farewell To Arms? I hold that “Looking for an intern to fall in love with me during wartime, reunite with me against all odds, escape to Switzerland and ultimately die in childbirth” is a far more interesting premise than “Looking for an intern to act out the very clichéed man fantasy I was initially too sensible/ugly to act on, so I wrote a book about it instead, but now that my ego is bigger I want a do-over.”
That said, perhaps this will provide a much needed reality check for Mr. Peters, starting with the part where, unlike the protagonist of The Affair, he does not find a willing and nubile participant five minutes after waltzing into the Student Union cafeteria. (This really happens!)
And this goes without saying, but I think unpaid internships are bullshit even when the intern is not being asked to have sex with her boss and do half of his work for him. If you want to do an unpaid internship, come work for me. There are always healthy snacks in the fridge, and I promise not to make you touch my genitals.