Gillian Anderson Wants To Hear Your Fantasies As She Writes Book On Sexuality 

She’s played a sex educator on Sex Education, now Gillian Anderson is writing her own book on women and sexuality.

Though Gillian Anderson has played many an iconic role throughout her illustrious career, it’s her latest as Dr Jean Milburn in Netflix’s highly popular Sex Education that has endeared her to a new generation of fans. While the show has become one of the streaming platform’s most successful franchises with fans eagerly awaiting the upcoming fourth season, Milburn’s character has somewhat transcended the screen. With her disarming honesty, affable nature and quick wit, Dr Milburn is the sex educator we all wish we had. Where most of us grew up with the kind of sex education that reduced pleasure and consent to mere reproductive organs and monthly cycles, Anderson’s Milburn presents a holistic view of sexuality and wellbeing. 

In a role that Anderson has made uniquely her own, it’s not that surprising then that Milburn would come to influence the actor herself. Now, in a sense of life-imitating-art, Anderson is writing a new book which will chronicle the intimate lives of women from around the world. 

Anderson announced the new project and called for women to write to her personally with their own sexual fantasies and stories – some of which will be selected and published in the book. 

In her call-out for personal entries, she wrote: “The ‘Dear Gillian’ project will form a generation-defining book, compiling your anonymous letters to me to explore how women really think about sex. I am asking for letters of around 1,000 (but no more than 2,500) words, in any language, describing your most intimate, private sexual fantasies. Simply open your letter with ‘Dear Gillian,’ and let your imagination run wild. I will, of course, also share my own.”

She added: “Whatever your background, whomever you do or don’t sleep with, whether you’re eighteen or eighty: if you identify as a woman, I want to hear from you.”

While it’s hard not to imagine that Anderson took some inspiration from her Sex Education character, the actor expressed that it was actually when reading Nancy Friday’s My Secret Garden that the idea of such a project came about. Friday’s book also served as part of her research for her role as Dr Milburn. Speaking on the Women’s Prize for Fiction podcast, Anderson explained why the book had resonated so strongly with her. “[Here] women are sharing their deepest fantasies in an unfiltered, raw way…The interviews divulge something truly personal,” she said of the 1973 classic. 

For Anderson, she wants to reboot Friday’s work into something of a modern-day tale as she explores what the sex lives of women look like now, 50 years later. “As women, we know that sex is about more than just sex. But so many of us don’t talk about it,” says Anderson. 

“Our deepest, most intimate fears and fantasies remain locked away inside of us, until someone comes along with the key. Here is the key. I want to hear from you…Because when we talk about sex, we talk about womanhood and motherhood, infidelity and exploitation, consent and respect, fairness and egalitarianism, love and hate, pleasure and pain.”

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