The Nice Girl’s Guide to Talking Dirty by Dr. Ruth Neustifter, out this month from Amorata Press, is a solid foundational guide for women looking to gain comfort around dirty talk and sexual expression. I would particularly recommend it for a sexually moderate-to-conservative, cisgender female audience, and especially women who are in a long-term relationship or marriage and looking to spice things up or get more comfortable communicating with a partner. Though queer couples are mentioned as examples, especially towards the middle of the book, I found the beginning hard to read from a queer perspective. This is a manual that provides a helpful alternative to the ladymags, giving solid advice but not pushing the envelope so far as to scare off a newbie to sexual material.
The book relies on a number of foundational exercises to help women find their dirty talking style, along with a plethora of examples taken from Dr. Neustifter’s practice. The real meat of the book comes when readers are encouraged to find their personal style by choosing a wearable item to symbolize their sensuality and form the basis of their style of dirty talking. The burgeoning dirty talker need not be led any particular direction by this exercise–it is highly individualized, which is what makes it a good jumping off point for the rest of the exercises in the book. Whether the “nice girls” picking up this volume are drawn in the direction of shocking and nasty, sweet and sensual, or shy and boyish, this particular exercise allows the reader to find a comfortable starting place from which to explore dirty talk.
This post was originally published on the blog Sex Positive Activism, which has now merged to become the sex & relationships section of Queer & Now.