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xoJane message received! I'm here to learn!


"But truly my sincerest defense of seduction lies in how desperately I wish someone would seduce me. I am really a very simple puzzle to solve, but very few people actually pay attention." I saw a post card a couple of years ago that was meant to be ironic, it said "Oh my God, I think I'm becoming the man I wanted to marry." I had a light bulb moment and realized if I couldn't get my ideal man I should strive to become him (the female version at any rate). In the process, I met someone really awesome who fell in love with the updated version of me. I agree with you, seduction can be a tool to grow, become self-secure and learn to be wholly unselfish toward someone else. Like any tool it can be used for evil too. I've had crazy-girl syndrome throughout my dating life, not quite getting it, feeling anxious and and emotional klutz over 100% of the time.To gain that security required owning up to so many failures and equally a willingness to learn. Your book speaks a truth too many women aren't willing to accept out of laziness and insecurity: that they have to be active agents in their romantic life too instead of 'waiting' for prince charming.


I think your point about insecurity being selfish is pretty dead-on. I've often called low self-esteem reverse narcissism. Sure, they may not come off as an arrogant douche bag or rotten prick, but they're still preoccupied with themselves, thereby depriving someone else of....them. And, I've always found, when things do work between two people, it's usually because they've gotten out of their own way and are intent on the happiness/contentment of the other person. Cool.

B. Adu

Not sure what the problem with what you were saying was. It seems perfectly rational to do something about an area of your life that you're unhappy with.

The kind of thing you are talking about causes much unhappiness and frustration.


I've been a longtime fan of your work, but I have to take serious issue with your pejorative use of the word "selfish" over and over and over in this post. Ascribing virtue to "selfless" action is a self-destructive practice, and further, it literally plays right into the hands of all of the criticism that you received for your essay.

In my opinion, your message would be more digestible if it was reframed as empowering the selfishness that is behind the motives of undertaking a seduction. It is in fact possible for something to be selfish and win-win for both involved parties. Clearly this is what you are saying, but it seems from my perspective to be self-contradictory for you to on the one hand say that it is okay for one to go after what she wants and on the other hand say that being selfish is negative.

My $0.02.

Arden Leigh

Geoff - I have a feeling we are debating semantics, because I agree with the majority of what you wrote. Point taken though.

Sent from my iPhone


It might be semantics; my philosophical ethical egoism bias always raises flags when the word selfish gets used in a negative way.


I just have to say, this is an incredible breath of fresh air. I go to xoJane exactly because I can be introduced to artists and thinkers like yourself. I am floored by your intelligence, insight, and self-awareness and your application of it to an area which is frankly under-appreciated for the honesty at its heart. You are so well-spoken and I can't wait to read more of your work! I had no idea there were female pickup artists, and I'm very eager to read more through your voice :)

Alex Nicole

I think I like this even more than I liked the xojane article.

Arden Leigh

Alex - I had a greater word count here ;)

Sent from my iPhone


I just discovered you via xojane article and immediately bought your book. While I certainly can't call myself a seductress, I couldn't have written this paragraph more accurately about my dating life than you did:

"...I wish someone would seduce me. I am really a very simple puzzle to solve, but very few people actually pay attention. They see what's on the surface of me -- a sexually confident, conventionally attractive, successful, self-sustaining woman who lives by the principles of getting what she wants -- and they assume I don't need/want them."

I appreciated what else I read as I jumped around your site, and I'm looking forward to getting to know you better.


This is fascinating how you have contrived to totally unfold the topic which you have picked for this particular entry of yours. BTW did you use some similar blog articles as a source of ideas to be able to complete the entire situation which you published in your entry?

Arden Leigh

Kate -- You cant call yourself a seductress... yet. Keyword: yet. ;) ;)

Sent from my iPhone


"What sets the seducer apart is that she goes out of her way to make it happen for her loved ones as beautifully as possible. She assumes the burden of potential rejection in order to further the chances of happiness for both herself and her target."---- I love this paragraph and I am saving it. I have sometimes felt active seduction, especially when it becomes easy with practice, is somehow predatory and manipulative just by its nature. I work in an adult business that requires it and sometimes feel conflicted about where to draw the line both professionally and in my personal life with "tactics." This quote really helped me reframe seduction as a loving gesture, because it brings pleasure and removes pressure from the other person.


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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBIL2sdfoVc Chen Lizra said it well on TED talks in defense of seduction: "Seduction is like money, it gives you power. But wether you are going to use it for good or for bad, it depends on who you are".


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I found your blog via the xoJane article and just wanted to say you have great writing and advice here!

I completely agree with there being 2 kinds of pickup—one based on deception (which will only work as long as the alcohol has deactivated the bullshit detector) and one based on genuine self-improvement, making ourselves worthy of the partner we would like to have.

I think you hit the nail on the head with the post about mediocrity and how self-improvement is a dirty word these days. Some people don't want to work to be fit, attractive, accomplished, worldly, interesting people, and then they accuse the entire other gender of misogyny/misandry for not loving them the way they are.

The problem is, love and attraction don't work like a charity. We are attracted to what we can admire. Pity is the antithesis of romantic love (to quote Shoshanna from Girls, "But sometimes I love you the way that like, I feel sorry for a monkey. They need so much help and they're in such an ugly cage, you know what I mean?")

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