Sex Advice From . . . Men’s Magazine Editors

Pin it

Sex advice...


Tony, 34
Editor-in-Chief, Sync

What are ten ways to satisfy my woman every time? Just kidding. Give me the top three.
I could give you ten, I could give you three, but my advice to any guy is really: master going south, and stay there forever. Or until she tells you she’s had enough and you need to go away.

What’s sexier — writing or editing?
Writing, by far. Editors tend to be relatively boring. Writers have this great life: a lot of travel, a lot of dirty hook-ups. They’re the ones who get in front of that model or celebrity and learn everything. The editor lives vicariously through everyone else.

When I was at Rolling Stone, I sent this writer to go do a crime story. His job was to go to this prison and interview this woman. Real sanitary stuff, straight-up hard news; we’re talking about a 5,000-word feature. The writer, this young sort-of-nerdy kid, was dealing with the criminal’s lawyer, and she was absolutely gorgeous. So they did everything he needed to do, went to the prison, sat in the dirty room, he and the lawyer and the convict. And afterward, he had this fantastic threesome with the lawyer and her best friend.

That’s not a conflict of interest?
I think it’s a HUGE conflict of interest. But at the end of the day, she was just that hot. And so was her friend.

What’s a gadget everyone should have on their bedside table?
Gadgets won’t get you laid. A phone has never closed the deal for anyone in history. But pick up the AlcoMate Digital Breathalyzer (, $130). That way you can test her after sex, just to reassure yourself that you didn’t get laid just because she was too wasted to see how ugly you were.

What’s one thing you should edit out when disclosing your sexual past to a new partner?
Whether or not you’ve got a shrink. I don’t think that’s first-date conversation.

What’s one thing you can’t edit out?
STDs. And a small penis, that’s for damn sure.

Even if you’d like to.
Even if you’d like to. I worked at Jane, which was all women, and to hear women really get down to brass tacks and tear guys apart on how small a guy can be — and how, at the end of the day, whether they really like him or not, they just can’t get past it . . . it was a real eye-opener. If you’re hung like a horse, you don’t need to go showing it off, but if you’ve got an issue downstairs, you can’t edit that out. You’ve got to get it on the table at some point, even just to break the ice, so you can say, “I told you so.”

I had two great dates with a guy, and then he suddenly went AWOL. How can I let him know I’m still interested without seeming overly available?
I think the old booty-text message is the way to go. If you want to hook up with this guy, and you send him a message on Thursday night at eleven, well, you’re gonna get your answer then. If he messages you back, there’s a good chance you can hook up or at least get the ball rolling again. I think it’s a relatively casual way to let a person know you’re thinking about them. If you don’t get a reply to that text message, call it quits and move on.

What should you write in a booty-text message?
Actually, in Sync we did a thing on booty-texting. The reality is, if a woman text-messages a guy at eleven o’clock, a guy’s eyes light up.

How can I make a handjob interesting?
All right, I spent five years in the Navy before I went to college. I’ve seen some women in other parts of the world do the most amazing things with handjobs. I’ve heard of women who can fool you into thinking you’re having sex with them. I can’t give you physical descriptions. I think you might need to go join the Navy and learn that for yourself. But it can be done in a fantastic way, and I’ve seen it. For super-cheap.

What sex-advice question would you have asked that I didn’t?
"How many one-night stands are acceptable for a person to have? And what’s the comparison between guys and girls?" Every woman I’ve ever met has said she’s had maybe two one-night stands in her life. But every guy in the world says he’s had at least twenty, and I can’t figure out the math.

What’s the best way to get an editor to go home with you?
Man, just show up. Editors are pretty desperate people when you get down to it. They sit at desks twelve, thirteen hours a day. Other than that, flatter the magazine. But you could say the magazine they work for is the biggest piece of shit, and most editors would still try to hook up with you.

Bart, 31
Music Editor, Details

What are three ways to satisfy my woman every time?
Let’s see. Don’t piss her off, first of all. Don’t talk too much. Hm, I’m trying to think of my most recent excursion and what I did right. I think I said I was sorry when I said something completely stupid. So apologize. And don’t be too quick on the trigger; be prepared to be long-suffering in the sack to make sure she gets her cookie.

Well, sometimes it is. Not in bad way! It’s just the fact of the matter is, [for men it’s] a lot easier to do our thing, and then we could be doing something productive.

That really sounds bad. This is why I got in trouble the first time.

I think you need to pull out one of those apologies.
Yeah. Well, it’s just that a guy can be in and done, and a woman takes a bit longer, so the man has to stick around longer than maybe he would want to sometimes.

What sexual characteristics would you attribute to someone who writes:
Personal essays?
Probably lots of insecurity. As you can tell, he runs his mouth too much and says stupid things at inopportune times.
Investigative reports?
He’s probably pretty pervy. He looks through her underwear drawer and spies on her frequently to get to the bottom of her psychosis.
Short fiction?
I mean, isn’t it obvious?
What about music reviews?
Well, that’s kind of obvious too, because you have to have great music. There’s this band I like, their name’s Elbow, and the highest compliment I ever got was when during the act, three songs in, the girl stops and says, “What is this music? It’s so good.” And that was better than an orgasm — to get complimented on the music in the middle of everything. Actually, maybe it was something against me, because she was concentrating on the music. Um, music is key.
What’s sexier: writing or editing?
Oh, writing. I’ve gone both ways. But writing, you’re out there doing stuff. Editing, you’re sitting in a cube, hashing over nouns and verbs. It’s just going to be boring.

I recently started an email correspondence with a flirtatious acquaintance, only to discover she can’t spell. I found myself so obsessed with mentally correcting her mistakes that I barely got the message that she wanted to hook up. Am I being petty? Or do I deserve someone who won’t misspell “deserve” three different ways in one email?
It’s definitely not just you. Once I went out with a girl who always misspelled “separate,” and it basically drove a wedge. I mean, I misspell, that’s what spell-check is for, so goddamn it, use spell-check. Yeah, “separate” was the big one for me. It’s always the little things that grow into bigger problems. It starts with a little misspelling, and the next thing you know, she’s fucking your best friend.

Interesting that it was the word “separate.”
It was foretelling.

What’s one thing you should edit out when disclosing your sexual past to a new partner?
How good he or she was. From personal experience, no matter what [a previous partner] did, in the early stages of a relationship, lie about it. Because a guy wants to hear he’s the best she’s ever had. So absolutely lie about numbers, how big their dick was, how great it was, everything.

What childish “I like you” move (like teasing someone on the playground) still works for adults?
The fail-safe, at least for me, is the mix tape. It’s a CD now, of course. But it almost can’t fail. I’ve hooked up with girls by giving them mix tapes. I’ve also hooked up with a girl by just talking about mix tapes.

What’s a classy way to say “thanks for a good time” after an amazing night?
I think of "classy" as doing a little soft-shoe and giving her flowers, having a top hat and cane or something like that. I don’t think we’re classy people; I think we’re nice people. A phone call is nice, even if you don’t want to see them again ever.

I become a complete idiot every time I run into a particular attractive acquaintance. I’m really quite interesting, but we can barely speak to each other without my pants getting tight and my mouth getting stupid. Any tips?
This is what I was taught: when you’re talking to someone, look at their nose, so it looks like you’re looking them in the eye. Don’t look at their boobs or their eyes. That’s really what I do.

I enjoy the company of two men who are friends with each other. I feel like each flirtation is coming to a head, but I don’t know which of them I prefer. Is it first-come, first-serve? Should I make a pro-and-con list?

I’ve been in this situation before, and I always regretted it: “What would have happened with the other one?” Go with your loins in this case. Which one turns you on more?

What’s an often-ignored tip for keeping a long-term relationship fresh?
I think it’s a lot about hair. Growing a beard, not growing a beard, shaving it into a mustache. I go from Grizzly Adams to porn star to getting carded at a liquor store in a week. It certainly helps in keeping things fresh around our house. For women: hair color.

What sex-advice question would you have asked that I didn’t?

Why do I always seem so much better in bed when I’m drunk?

What’s the best way to get an editor to go home with you?
Tell them how great their writing is. Nothing gets a guy going like an ego massage. “I like your style. I like the way you write a lede.” Anything like that, my ears perk up.

No matter what the career, the answer is always flattery.
It’s true. We’re really simple beasts. We’re silly little animals, and it’s all about our egos, sadly.

Dan B., 26
Associate Editor, Stuff

What are three ways to satisfy my woman every time?
Don’t act like a porn star. Don’t have an orgasm. Don’t ask her to do anything.

What sexual characteristics would you attribute to someone who writes:
Investigative reports?
Will use the best condoms.
Short fiction?
Be careful of the twist ending. If you think the girl is single, she’s married. If she says she’s married, she’s really just desperate. If she says she’s desperate, she’s probably really a figment of your imagination.
Sex advice?
All talk. Sure, she can tell you what brand of sex toys last longer and how a girl can initiate a threesome, but don’t expect her to act out the advice. It’s like a world-famous chef who eats Easy Mac when he’s at home.

What’s sexier — writing or editing?
Writing is sexier. There are no rules. You can do whatever you want. Want to put a verb here? Go right ahead. Want to misspell the word “leprechaun”? Be my guest. It’s free and fun. Editing is too much like school.

What’s one thing you should edit out when disclosing your sexual past to a new partner?
Names. Unless it’s her roommate, she won’t care that you dated a girl named Sally Johnson. But whatever you do, don’t omit any celebrity encounters. That’s why you slept with a celebrity in the first place!

I’m an editor with an alternative quarterly. I recently started dating a great guy, who, you guessed it, is a writer. He submitted some fiction to my publication and it was terrible. How can I let him down easy?
Get an outside opinion. It can’t be THAT bad. You work for an alternative quarterly. Don’t you publish just about anything?

What’s a classy way to say “thanks for a good time” after amazing sex?
Woman, you can say whatever you want after sex. Recite the Twenty-Third Psalm, sing the Golden Girls theme, it doesn’t matter to us. We just appreciated your help. For guys, you shouldn’t “thank” her. Just say something like, “That was amazing.” If you want to class it up, say, “That was amazing. Let’s go to the opera.”

I’m twenty-one and almost exclusively interested in older women. Most of them brush me off as a child. How can I get an older woman to take me seriously?
Stop inviting them to keg parties and Arcade Fire concerts.

Two weeks ago, I hooked up with a girl in a club and left without getting her number. I’ve been thinking about it ever since. Is there anything I can do about it now? How much effort can I put into this without looking crazy?
First, call the police. Tell them that some girl attacked you at a club. Describe her in detail and have them check for fingerprints on your clothes. Now, play the waiting game. If the police end up with no leads, you’ll have to exaggerate your story a bit more. Say she was also carrying a gun, and was telling you all about this cool terror training camp she goes to on weekends. They’ll find her. Then drop the charges and live happily ever after.

How can I make a handjob interesting?
Use your vagina.

My friends don’t like my girlfriend. What’s worse: she senses it and is upset. They just don’t think she’s interesting. How can I subtly bridge the gap between them?
Take everyone on a paintball trip. Your friends will get all their aggression out, and your girlfriend will finally have an interesting story to tell. You can get similar results from orgies.

What sex-advice question would you have asked that I didn’t?
What’s the purpose of the female orgasm? I don’t have an answer to that, but it’s a mind-bender. Guys have an orgasm to shoot their seed into a woman, right? But what’s the point of a woman reaching climax? Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for women getting their rocks off. But scientifically, I’m curious what God was thinking.

Richard, 26
Articles Editor, Giant

What sexual characteristics would you attribute to someone who writes:
Personal essays?
They’re probably pretty selfish in bed.
Investigative reports?
They’re probably really tough on the woman parts.
Celebrity gossip?
In and out. They’ve got places to go, they’re busy people.

What’s sexier: writing or editing?
Oh, editing, for sure. It’s all about control.

Can you start an open relationship with someone you’ve had a long exclusive relationship with?
You most certainly CANNOT. It’s a sink-or-swim situation. Like Woody Allen said, relationships are like sharks.

What childish “I like you” move (like telling a friend to tell their friend that you like them) still works for adults?
I’m no longer single, but speaking subjectively, the passive-aggressive ignoring still seems to work pretty well. Men especially love the hunt.

I haven’t been in a relationship for months and don’t really want to be in one anytime soon, but I’m getting a bit frustrated. Who can I ask to mess around with me? I’m not sure if I’m attracted enough to any of my friends, and I’m reluctant to put in the effort with a stranger.
Well there are some nice people online on Craigslist. Folks just like you looking for a good time, no judgment.

How can I make a handjob interesting?
By not doing it.

No? Too middle school?
They’re so 2003. Over-the-pants-hand-jobs, what a friend of mine calls “OTPHJ,” can be remotely interesting if done in public. However, you’re sort of in the waters of puberty. Assuming you’re not fifteen and horny, I’d avoid them at all costs.

What exactly are second and third base?
That is an excellent question. Well, there’s obviously a second base, which is feeling up under the bra. And then there’s third base which is . . . well, I don’t know what you’d call it. But then there’s “sloppy seconds,” which is when you give the breasts the oral treatment.

What are three ways to satisfy my woman every time?
Tell her she smells good. Tell her she looks good. And tell her she tastes good.

What’s the best way to get an editor to go home with you?
Compliment him.

On his editing?
On anything. We’re all extremely narcissistic.  

Interviews by Kate Sullivan. Sex Advice From… appears on Thursdays. Do you have questions for the general public? Send them to

Previous Sex Advice


©2005 Kate Sullivan and, Inc.