Sexy is the word

Sexy is the word

Andy Quan calls his writing literary and poetically charged. But he’d hardly be perturbed if readers’ interest was less than cerebral.

If people pick it up because they think it’s sexy and they’re attracted to it, and they’re hoping to get off, and they get off, then I’m happy with that, the Canadian-born author says of his latest book, Six Positions, which is launched tonight.

Quan’s cheery admission deserves a qualifier: Six Positions, a collection of short stories, is somewhat different from standard literary fare.

Billed as sex writing, the work blends fact and fantasy in exploring all manner of bodily pleasures. Its subject matter includes gay orgies, sexed-up surfers and fisting but, Quan insists, there is more to Six Positions than titillation.

I think there’s some sex appeal about this book that people will be interested in, Quan says.

But I think that just by the nature of the stories that there’s lots in there that goes beyond that. I’m confident in readers that they’ll find different things.

Six Positions also ponders the ideas of community and cultural identity that Quan explored in earlier works such as Calendar Boy and Slant.

I’ve always felt as a writer that to simply tell my story and to have Asian characters and to speak as an Asian man is something that will make a difference to gay culture, Quan says.

Yet shifting perceptions of race are not the only changes he is keen to document.

Resident in Sydney for the past six years, Quan has perceived evolving attitudes to sex, a theme that informs his latest work.

I certainly think there are some wild and out-there Canadians but I think Sydney’s got an amazing culture in terms of sex and gay sex and sexuality, Quan says.

Some people here have an amazing confidence and freedom about themselves that I admire and that has certainly inspired some of the writing here.

Six Positions is launched tonight (Thursday, 23 June) at Manacle, Taylor Square, at 6:30pm, and is available from The Bookshop Darlinghurst, $24.95.

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