As it happens, Adrianna Luna and I grew up in the same neighborhood. We had mutual friends and, from time to time, we’d run into each other. A few months ago, I learned she started performing in porn and I was curious.
I wanted to know why, I wanted to know how it was going. I was interested in learning more about sex work and I was interested in learning more about her. I asked a mutual friend if Adrianna would maybe be interested in an interview.
On a weekend afternoon, I went to her apartment. She sat on the couch, painting her nails hot pink. She said, The thing I hate about this job is that I always have to paint my nails. She said it with her high-pitched voice and she said it sweetly. After I interviewed her, I realized she is sweet and vulnerable, too. I feel a tenderness for her that might be hard to explain.
The Rumpus: I’m wondering how you decided to start working in porn.
Adrianna Luna: Well, when I started, when I first met with my agent, I was under the impression–I didn’t know it was going to be porn–I thought it might just be nude modeling. I thought, I could do some stuff on the side, I could do that. Then, when I went to go meet her, she said, Yes, there is that, but it’s on set and you’d have to do porn. I was like, Oh. Oh, no. No way. She said, Well, what are you scared of? And she explained everything to me about the industry.
Rumpus: What did she say?
Luna: Well she asked if I was scared of diseases–and I was under the impression that you use condoms. They don’t use condoms in this industry. One company does. I haven’t shot for them. But she was like, You know, you go through really intensive testing every thirty days. In the state of California, they test a lot more than in other states. It’s a lot more regulated.
I told her, I just–I don’t know. That’s just something so private, I just don’t think I could do it. Maybe I could do solo or just with girls and she said, You know, I have a lot of girls right now that only do that and they would take priority. I can take you on and we can put you as that but I honestly don’t think we can get you a lot of work. You really have to do boy-girl. I was like, OK well, let me think about it and I left.
I thought, You know. I don’t know if it’s that bad and I met with a friend and I talked to her about it. I told her, I think I could totally do this but I don’t know. Do you think I’m crazy? I really have to think these things through. What about the consequences of doing this. It’s going to stay with me forever. My friend was like, If you want to, you should do it. I would accept you. I’m sure any of your close friends would too.
So I go to the agent and I say, OK. I’ll try one scene. What’s one scene? If I hate it, if it’s totally horrible, then I’ll disappear. I’ll never have to do anything again. So I went and it actually was a lot of fun.
Rumpus: What was your first scene like?
Luna: It was a lot more professional than I thought. I think a lot of people think that the industry is very dirty, very seedy, that there’s drugs and alcohol everywhere and that it’s not safe. It’s actually very professional, as much as it can be. It is porn, it’s sex. I kind of feel like it’s a uniform. When you go to a hospital, you see people in scrubs. When you go to a porn shoot, you see people naked. That’s what it is. That’s your uniform. But it’s very controlled. Everyone has their job and everyone makes you feel really comfortable. I was surprised how quickly I was just OK walking around naked my first day. I thought I’d be really shy.
Rumpus: How did you imagine your first scene would be?
Luna: I had no idea. Honestly. I don’t know. I never really thought about it. I never watched porn before getting into it. The night before my first scene I went online–my friend told me about these free sites–but honestly, the first thing I saw was very aggressive, like porn star punishment. I was like, Oh my God. I’m definitely not doing that.
Rumpus: What was it?
Luna: This girl was getting fish hooked, in her mouth, and they were pounding her from the back and she was all sweaty. It just looked like a mess.
Rumpus: That’s the first video you ever watched?
Luna: I was like, Oh my God. I definitely cannot do this. Then I saw another scene that was a lot more tame. But even still. Some of the stuff the girls were saying. I was like, Oh my God. I can’t talk like that. All the dirty talk they were saying. I just didn’t even think about you’re going to have to talk. I thought I’d just have to moan. All the stuff the girls were saying. I thought, What am I going to do? What am I going to say?
Rumpus: Wait, but–I mean, had you talked dirty in the bedroom before?
Luna: A little. But not like that. I’d never used the word cock before. Never. Now I use it everyday. Now it’s weird for me not to. Even in a normal conversation, I use the word cock and think, Oh…that was kind of vulgar.
Rumpus: When you were talking to your friend and she gave you the advice to go ahead and do it, she said your closest friends were not going to judge you. Is that something you were afraid of?
Luna: Yeah. In my head, I thought this is kind of bad but I’m intrigued. I want to try it but I didn’t know it was OK. And she said if you want to do it, you should just do it.
Rumpus: Bad, in terms of?
Luna: Bad, in terms of…Morally wrong, I think. Like this is bad. I guess I thought, What are people going to think when they find out? Even still I feel bad when I talk to my mom. I hope she never finds out. In my head I think she won’t. I don’t know. Most people say your parents are going to find out. I don’t know how I would respond to her if she found out. I’d just be really embarrassed.
Rumpus: Was there a specific person you were embarrassed to tell or you were afraid of telling and then told?
Luna: I was scared of telling my roommate, best friend/sister figure. I was for sure afraid of telling her but I knew I had to. Because she was going to catch on that I wasn’t going to work anymore, that I was leaving at odd times with a suitcase. You know? (Laughs)
Rumpus: Why were you afraid to tell her?
Luna: I didn’t know if she was going to be accepting of it. It’s kind of a shocking thing. It’s not something that everyday someone is going to say, Oh I’m doing porn. A lot of people have problems with it. It’s not openly accepted by the public.
Rumpus: How did you tell her?
Luna: We went out for drinks and I thought, OK. I’m going to need a lot of drinks before I tell her. Even then I almost didn’t. It was towards the end of the night, almost time to get the check, and my other friend was looking at me like, Do it, tell her.
Rumpus: So you were just sitting there? Thinking about how to say it?
Luna: Yes! We were having conversations and I was just not there. I was just thinking, Do it. Just do it. Do it now. And then I would say something else, get off topic. I’d get too scared. Then there was a random, silent moment and I said, OK. I have to tell you something. But don’t get mad, don’t judge me because it’s kind of bad. Once I told her, she said, Oh. I thought it was going to be something way worse. OK, she said and that was it. She was the hardest one to tell.
Rumpus: So you started in March, you’re new, relatively.
Luna: Yes, very.
Rumpus: I guess I don’t really have a concept of what being new means in the sex industry. How long is new, how long do women usually last?
Luna: Oh, right. The shelf life. Well, most girls get in and a lot of them are really bad, they don’t like it. It might be they don’t like having sex or they don’t like giving head or they just don’t like the experience, they’re just there for a paycheck. So they’re just kind of laying there and they’re not really giving anything and it’s just a really bad scene.
I think just because the industry itself is going down because of the economy and because of all this free porn now, people aren’t really shooting as many movies anymore. A lot of the companies have shut down and there’s not as much work anymore and they’re saying that most girls only work three months and that’s it and they’re done.
My agent says she’s had tons of girls and they start out and they’re shooting all the time. When you’re new, everybody wants to shoot you, so you could be working five, six days a week for a month, which is a lot. It takes a lot out of your body, too. You need breaks. One day to the next, she’ll stop getting calls for a certain girl and she just can’t book that girl anymore and that’s just it. They do two months and you’re out. Three months and you’re out.
Rumpus: So your agent told about you this before?
Luna: Yes. She said, You’re doing really well. You kind of made it over that hump. I’ve never gotten complaints about you. People really like working with you. They say you have a great attitude in that you honestly really enjoy it. And I told her, I do and she said, And it comes off. You’ve been in it six months and you’re just as busy now as when you started and she said that’s really good. I guess you can make it or you can’t and there’s really no telling. But she also thinks that it’s odd because of my age. My agent said, You’re a beautiful girl, I get why you get booked but normally, I probably wouldn’t have taken anyone your age. It makes no sense. No one should really want to book you so much, being new.
Rumpus: And you’re how old?
Luna: I’m twenty-seven. That’s old.
Rumpus: That’s old?
Luna: That’s really old. She says, You’re lucky you look really young and you have such a pretty face. That’s what is keeping you in. Most people don’t come in at twenty-seven and the people that are my age have been in for a long time already and they’re just a big name, so of course they keep shooting. But they’re more of that character or persona or whatever that might be. Everybody knows them. So, I don’t know. (Laughs) I’m like a rare kind of thing. I don’t know why it works but it works.
Rumpus: Well, how does it feel?
Luna: It’s nice. It’s flattering. For sure. It’s probably also because–she says, You don’t look your age. You look like your twenty-two or twenty-three. And the voice. Everyone loves the voice and the boobs.
Rumpus: How would you describe your voice?
Luna: My voice? The best way to say it is, a lot of people say that I sound like a cartoon. Don’t I sound like a cartoon?
Luna: Yeah! Like a dirty cartoon. (Laughs) Maybe like a South Park or something. It’s kind of bad though when they say, You sound like such a little girl and sometimes they’ll want me to talk really dirty, like a lot, just because of the voice, which is kind of pervy.
Rumpus: You say you like doing porn, you enjoy it. Through this experience, which hasn’t been that long, have you discovered you like sex more than before?
Luna: A lot more than I did before. Sometimes I look back and think, I don’t know how you’ve become more open and OK with a lot of things. I don’t know if that’s a bad thing. I mean, I’m still trying to grasp and get my head around this whole thing. What it is I’m doing and why am I doing it.
For me right now it’s just fun. I feel like I’m just having fun. And I feel like I have to take it more seriously. There’s going to be consequences and I really need to think about what I’m doing now and how it’s going to affect me later. But I just feel like I show up and I’m having a lot fun. I’m not feeling bad about what I’m doing. I don’t have any regrets about what I’m doing. But, I know I should take it a little bit more serious. It is my body. It is me. It’s going to stick with me forever.
I don’t know if becoming OK with so much is a bad thing, if it’s just making me numb to respecting myself, maybe? I don’t know because really quickly a dude would be like Um, Are you OK with swallowing and I was like, Yeah, sure. Why not? Or are you OK with doing group sex and I was like, Yeah sure, why not? Because I have fun with it, but I don’t know.
One time, somebody–I was having a conversation with my boyfriend and it was my first blow bang, and he said, You shouldn’t be doing blow bangs. I was like, Why not? I want to. I really like to give head so I thought, Why not? Four at the same time! I was excited about it. He said, No. If you want to make a career out of this or you want to stay in for a while, you shouldn’t be doing that. You’re too pretty. That’s something they’ll have just any other girl do. Or you’re too new to be doing this. You should wait. You just need to be more exclusive with yourself. I said, But I want to.
He said, How much are they paying you to do it and it’s not worth it, for all these people. It was the first time I actually said, Do I not respect myself? Am I degrading myself? What am I doing? I remember driving to set and I was talking to him and started crying. I thought, What am I doing, why do I think it’s a joke, why do I think it’s funny. He said, No, don’t cry. That’s not what I’m trying to tell you. It’s not bad. It’s great that you’re having fun with it, but he said I think you need to think about things more seriously.
And after that–honestly, I don’t know where this is going to go. I’m having fun with it at the moment. I’m in a phase in my life where I’m just trying to figure things out and this is something temporary that I picked up along the way. That was the intention of it when I got started in it and that’s still how I see it. I’m having a lot of fun with it and I enjoy it, but I don’t see it as something that’s going to be a part of me forever.