This month we caught up with the uber-talented author, writer, illustrator and sexpert Flo Perry. Her first book, How to Have Feminist Sex: A Fairly Graphic Guide, written from her perspective as a bisexual female, is our new bible for navigating modern sexual experiences.
It’s a light read that is at once witty, explicit, cheeky and honest. It’s a gloriously visual look into the bedroom and between the sheets of Millennial and GenZers alike that will have you laughing out loud and whatsapping pages to your friends.
Here at Nonchalant we love talking about sex. Why? Well, firstly we are totally over the prudish British default mindsets once and for all. Secondly, we want to put to bed (no pun intended) to those niggling insecurities that have been limiting both the conversation and hours/days/a lifetime of the glorious, pleasure-filled and joyful sexual experiences we all deserve. The book talks about the sexual utopia that could be possible in an era after #metoo, ghosting, libido dips, faking orgasms, pubic hair and the unrealistic expectations of body image and what you should be doing set by the porn industry.
So thanks Flo for writing the book we all needed. It is great, go order it now. Obvs once you’ve read the interview though babes.
So, tell us a bit about yourself, how did you get into writing?
I was the publicity officer for my university FemSoc. Through that role, I was talking to the student paper a bit and they offered me a column and I loved it!
What advice would you give to any aspiring illustrators/writers?
Do it because you love doing it and not because you have a fantasy of success in that field. If you’re already drawing and writing everyday then great try to make money out of that. But if you’re not then maybe you won’t enjoy it as much as you think you will. Success is like 85% luck in most cases. Also don’t compare yourself to bitches like me with famous parents who managed to publish a book at 27. I probably would not have been able to do that if I didn’t come from such a privileged background. I also graduated university in a boom time for online journalism where it was much easier to get a job. And even with all that success and luck I still earn less than minimum wage some years.
Sorry for being a Debbie Downer. But I think it’s important to acknowledge that you can be really talented and work really hard and still not get a book deal. Saying that if you love writing and drawing definitely keep doing it, if it makes you happy then you are a successful writer or illustrator – whether or not you’re making money from it, and put your stuff online and maybe someone will notice it.
Who are your role models and why?
Alison Bechdel is my idol. She does thoughtful, beautiful, funny graphic novels. And they made a musical of her life.
East London or West London?
I only visit West London if someone is paying me to.
An obvious question from a lesbian magazine, are you seeing anyone at the moment?
Yes! I live with my girlfriend. I love her and we are very happy.
If you could use a magic telephone to call yourself at 15 years old what would you say?
Don’t worry babes you’re gonna lose your virginity in like a year. Also virginity is a social construct and doesn’t matter at all.
Who’s your favourite writer at the moment and why?
I am going through a real off-phase with reading. My girlfriend just read me Talking to My Daughter About the Economy by Yanis Varoufakis. And although I still don’t understand government debt fully it really opened my eyes about how I’m not too stupid to understand economics it’s just that THEY don’t want the masses to understand economics. Sorry if that’s a boring answer, but you know dismantling the capitalist patriarchy can’t always be as fun as chatting about whether you can re-gift a vibrator.
Who’s your celebrity crush and why?
I was really into Crystal from the most recent series of Drag Race, but I think that’s because I have positive transference to all people with mullets because my girlfriend has one. More historically I have a cliched deep desire for Katherine Moennig Also wouldn’t say no to Tilda Swinton, Harry Styles, or Zoe Kravitz.
Why do you think Brits are so bad at talking about sex?
SHAME! We are scared of being sincere and vulnerable and unfortunately that’s exactly what you need if you’re going to have a good conversation about sex.
If you were in charge of the mainstream porn industry, what would you keep? What would you change?
I would immediately handover my title of Porn Queen to a community nominated panel of sex workers from all branches of the porn tree. I would give them the keys to pornhub HQ and tell them they can do what they like with it. Then I would go home and immediately subscribe to all of their onlyfans, even if I didn’t fancy them just because I’m nosey, then I would masturbate for hourrssss.
You say in the book that feminist sex is the sex you want to be having not the sex you think you should be having. What do you think is the main barrier standing in the way of everyone having great sex?
SHAME! Shame about how our bodies look. Shame about our true desires. Shame about masturbation. Shame about fear of rejection if we show our true selves. Humans are ruled by shame and fear of shame and it’s horrible and we all have to work really hard to shake it off.
What are your top tips for improving anyone’s sex life?
Talk about sex more! Most importantly with the person you’re having it with, but also with your friends. Tell your partner what you masturbate about. Really think consciously about your sexual fantasies and how you can incorporate them into your sex life. If not the fantasy exactly, see if you can recreate the feelings you experience in the fantasy.
You can find Flo’s book online or in store now. If you want an extra fix of sex-positive reading check out Come as you are by Emily Nagoski. Find Flo on Insta here. or check out her website for some more of her work.
So there you have it, thanks Flo… happy reading and cheers to us all having better sex.
Check out our other interviews with more inspiring lesbian, queer and bisexual women, and let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.
Team Nonchalant xxx