Lovings

Lovings is a collection of autonomous single-sentence fictions that aims to include within a single text (and context) a multitude of erotic experiences. Whereas most erotic writing is about one thing, this is meant to be about everything. Periodical editors are invited to select the ones they wish to publish. These individual stories can then be run in whatever order an editor prefers. Please allow in the design and typography sufficient space (or distance) to establish that these are separate stories, with no particular connection to one another, other than common subject. My own recommendation would be that the designer use different typefaces for adjacent stories and, better yet, that blocks of type be floated in the space of the page (or the magazine column). Another suggestion is that a periodical interested in using a good deal of the text consider publishing their selections as a kind of serial, with, say, a dozen or two dozen stories in each successive issue, the whole thus functioning as a continuous feature to which readers would immediately turn as they open each new issue. Stories from Lovings may be published as well as a book of similar design. Beyond that, these Lovings could, with the aid of a sophisticated character-generator, also become the content of a cable television program or the base of a feature-length film. (Producers interested in this last possibility should contact the author for more specific details.)

At all costs I wanted to avoid any resemblance with a love story. My conviction is that the well-made love story, with a beginning, an end, and a crises in the middle, is the way society proposes that the lover should reconcile himself with the language of their great Orpheus. . . . So, it's a discontinuous book which protests in a small way against the [traditional] love story. —Roland Barthes, in an interview (4 April 1977)