Despite the success of E.L. James' bestselling erotic novel "Fifty Shades of Grey," British author Jilly Cooper says that sex in fiction has generally lost its appeal for women. The reason? “Women don’t want to have sex anymore,” Cooper said at the Cartier Queen’s Cup Final at the U.K.'s Guards Polo Club, the Telegraph reported.
Cooper, who has written a number of romance novels, also said that women’s busy schedules are to blame for their dwindled interest in sex, the paper reported:
Doctors’ waiting rooms are absolutely brimming these days with women suffering from low libidos. Ours is now a terribly under-sexed society. I have talked to a lot of young women about this and they just don’t seem to do it any more. Honestly. I suppose it’s because we all have so many other demands on our time now.
Cooper also told the Telegraph that “Fifty Shades” is helping to bring sexy novels back into fashion: “Porn was terribly out of fashion before that book came out,” Cooper says. “While I have heard that it is quite poorly written, I am delighted that it’s giving a new lease of life to the genre.” However, the fact that all three books in the “Fifty Shades” trilogy currently top the New York Times’ bestseller list, could be part of a larger trend -- one that says more about the readership than the books themselves. In May 2009, Harlequin Enterprises Ltd., a publisher that specializes in romantic fiction for women, reported 32 percent growth in sales over the course of a year, and overall romance novel sales were up about 2.4 percent.
All of which suggests that women may not have lost interest in sex -- in fiction or in life. A recent MissTravel survey found that 40 percent of women in their 20s had engaged in a one-night sexual encounter during a vacation -- 10 percent having had five or more sexual partners over the course of one week. And Match.com’s 6,000-person survey of American singles discovered that women are actually more likely than men to consider bad sex a relationship deal-breaker.
Whatever the reality is, Cooper said she is taking advantage of the “Fifty Shades” hype and aiming to include a whole lot of sex in her next novel. "I am really working hard to get more sex into it than usual,” she told the Telegraph. “I’ve got jockeys jumping on top of jockeys and horses jumping on top of horses.”