Thursday, January 1, 2015

Left Off the Page

by Annabeth Leong

The first time we hung out alone, I took off my clothes so she could draw me.

I still have the picture she made, but it seems lifeless to me. The page couldn't contain the scent that wafted from between my legs as her brightest lamp heated my body and I felt the attenuated caress of her pencil tracing my curves.

I kept taking off my clothes. She continued drawing me. Nothing changed except the way I felt about it.

The last time, I'd been hoping she would suggest it. I trembled as she looked at me, sick to my stomach with visions of possibility. I tried not to squeeze my thighs together because I knew she'd notice the flexing of my muscles.

That night, I dreamed of crawling from my cot into her bed, wrapping my arms around her at last, asking for the touch of her hands rather than her eyes. In the morning, her cold blue gaze sliced from beneath her dark bangs. "You must have had intense dreams last night. I heard you moaning."

14 comments:

  1. Oh my this is hot! Thanks for lifting my spirits on a cold dark New Year's Day.

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  2. I agree. This is lusciously sensual, despite the undercurrent of frustration. Beautiful!

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  3. A super flasher, Annabeth. Full of tension and desire. Enables the reader to grab the possibilities and run. In my former capacity as flasher editor @ ERWA, I'd definitely want this little gem for the gallery.

    Lifted more than my spirits. :>) Thanks for that.

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  4. If I were doing an anthology of lesbian 200 word flashers, I'd definitely want this one. (On the other hand, i'd go crazy editing as many stories as it took to fill a book. Just getting all the contracts sent and returned...argh!)

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    1. If they were all this good, I'd sure buy it.

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  5. Thanks so much to all of you. I'm enjoying Flash Fiction Fortnight. I'm really happy you all like this piece.

    Sacchi, I can just imagine the paperwork involved for that anthology. I wish there was some way automation could help because I would love to read that book...

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  6. Who knows, maybe the requirements for paper contracts (or signed and then scanned ones) is already outdated in some places. My publisher used to just require editors to have the signed contracts in our possession, but then, after an editor (not me) screwed up and a writer complained that she hadn't signed a contract (after the book came out), requiired us to send them the original contracts, retroactive to our last few anthologies. I learned to ask the writers for triple copies instead of double ones. The 69-stories anthology fell into the retroactive group, so I had to make copies of 69 contracts. Now, however, my publisher has been sold, and there's no telling yet how the new owners will want us to handle contracts, or if they will even care. Or publish our books at all.

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  7. Annabeth, this flasher is a great reversal of the traditional artist-model story. (Artist is usually male, model is female, he wants her, but he must put his Art above his baser needs.) I love this line: "Nothing changed except the way I felt about it."

    Sacchi, I'm sure the paperwork is a nightmare. An earlier edition of Maxim Jakubowski's Best New Erotica came out with an editor's note at the end of a story. It seems the editor couldn't find the writer, no one had signed any contract, and editor was hoping the writer would contact him. That looked to me at the time like a lawsuit in the making, but that was a few years ago, and I haven't heard naything further, so I hope it all worked out.
    An editor in the UK once wanted me to sign and mail back a paper contract by a certain deadline, & I learned that this would cost me $40 Canadian in postage! I explained this to editor in an email, and she said never mind -- I could send the actual contract by a slow boat, and meanwhile, my consent in an email would serve as a temporary contract. That worked for me, and all went well. However, I suppose publishers who run a tighter ship run less risk of legal complications.

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    1. These days there are several electronic contract services that work very well. Totally Bound uses EchoSign. Excessica uses a different one (I can't remember the name.) They take a huge amount of work and frustration out of the process.

      In fact, I pioneered on-line contracts when I edited CREAM (2006). I had more than forty authors. So I wrote a script that let authors fill in a form on the web. The script then generated a customized contract for their name and story, which they could print and sign.

      No electronic signatures back then ;^( but it still saved me a huge amount of time.

      Actually, we just scanned all those signed contracts (we're on a campaign to reduce the huge volume of our paper records). Funny to see all those names. Some of those authors are still around, but many seem to have disappeared. But maybe they're just using different pseudonyms.

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    2. I have several publishers who use electronic contracts, and I feel good about them. I've never educated myself on what exactly the legalities are, since I had other publishers who wouldn't take them. But with stuff like EchoSign, I assume the legalities are worked out... So, uh, go for it Sacchi? ;)

      Also, thanks so much for the comment on the story, Jean!

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  8. Hi Annabeth!

    Recently a friend told me she had once had nude pictures taken of herself many years ago and we laughed about it a little. But privately I thought - wow. Those are out there in the world somewhere, what would they look like? I sometimes try to imagine what it would be like to be a famous, world class artist and offer to paint interesting women that I knew in the nude. If you don't know the woman, the emotional connection is shallow and all fantasy. But its a powerful thing emotionally to see the nude image of a woman you actually know in real life. It's almost a religious experience for a man, like the revelation of a mystery.

    Garce

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    1. Hi! I also think it's interesting to see how the artist sees the person. In my experience, the way an artist paints/draws a nude reveals both people, not just the subject.

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