Dispatch from the Razor's Edge, the Blog of Michael Stephen Fuchs
Premature Ejaculation (On Chesil Beach)

Ian McEwan's now-no-longer-quite-new book, On Chesil Beach, is, it turns out, is an entire short novel, in the classic English pastoral literary mode, about a wedding night premature ejaculation. All else in the story – her patrician upbringing in Oxford and driven study of classical music, his disadvantaged youth and tragically brain-damaged mother, their class-crossed courtship on the tennis courts and in punts on the river – all of it is in service to the premature ejaculation scene.

That scene, however, it must be admitted, does comprise the most compelling, starkly well-written, and utterly unforgettable (not in a good way) premature ejaculation, if not in all of literature, then certainly in this reviewer's experience:

In horror she let go, as Edward, rising up with a bewildered look, his muscular back arching in spasms, emptied himself over her in gouts, in vigorous but diminishing quantities, filling her navel, coating her belly, thighs, and even a portion of her chin and kneecap in tepid, viscous fluid. It was a calamity, and she knew immediately that it was all her fault, that she was inept, ignorant, and stupid. She should not have interfered, she should never have believed the manual. If his jugular had burst, it could not have been more terrible…

…now she was incapable of repressing her primal disgust, her visceral horror at being doused in fluid, in slime from another body. In seconds it had turned icy on her skin in the sea breeze, and yet, just as she knew it would, it seemed to scald her. Nothing in her nature could have held back her instant cry of revulsion. The feel of it crawling across her skin in thick rivulets, its alien milkiness, its intimate starchy odour, which dragged with it the stench of a shameful secret locked in musty confinement – she could not help herself, she had to be rid of it. As Edward shrank before her, she turned and scrambled to her knees, snatched a pillow from under the bedspread and wiped herself frantically…

She snatched her shoes from the floor and ran through the sitting room, past the ruin of their meal, and out in the corridor, down the stairs, out through the main entrance, round the side of the hotel and across the mossy lawn. And even when she reached the beach at last, she did not stop running.



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about
close photo of Michael Stephen Fuchs

Fuchs is the author of the novels The Manuscript and Pandora's Sisters, both published worldwide by Macmillan in hardback, paperback and all e-book formats (and in translation); the D-Boys series of high-tech, high-concept, spec-ops military adventure novels – D-Boys, Counter-Assault, and Close Quarters Battle (coming in 2016); and is co-author, with Glynn James, of the bestselling Arisen series of special-operations military ZA novels. The second nicest thing anyone has ever said about his work was: "Fuchs seems to operate on the narrative principle of 'when in doubt put in a firefight'." (Kirkus Reviews, more here.)

Fuchs was born in New York; schooled in Virginia (UVa); and later emigrated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he lived through the dot-com boom. Subsequently he decamped for an extended period of tramping before finally rocking up in London, where he now makes his home. He does a lot of travel blogging, most recently of some very  long  walks around the British Isles. He's been writing and developing for the web since 1994 and shows no particularly hopeful signs of stopping.

You can reach him on .

THE MANUSCRIPT by Michael Stephen Fuchs
PANDORA'S SISTERS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
DON'T SHOOT ME IN THE ASS, AND OTHER STORIES by Michael Stephen Fuchs
D-BOYS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
COUNTER-ASSAULT by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book One - Fortress Britain, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Two - Mogadishu of the Dead, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : Genesis, by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Three - Three Parts Dead, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Four - Maximum Violence, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Five - EXODUS, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs

ARISEN Book Six - The Horizon, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Seven - Death of Empires, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Eight - Empire of the Dead by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : NEMESIS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Nine - Cataclysm by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Ten - The Flood by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Eleven - Deathmatch by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Twelve - Carnage by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Thirteen - The Siege by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Fourteen - Endgame by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : Fickisms
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