Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Diaries of the Dead

Among traditional and occult and New Agey folks there was always this thing called “The Books of the Akashic”.  There is an ancient belief that there are multiple worlds tiered above and below each other.  Somewhere immediately past this physical world there is supposed to be a spiritual realm where everything you’ve ever done is somehow recorded.  Psychics like Edgar Cayce claimed to go to this place and read the Book of Life, also called the Book of the Akashic.  If you’ve ever seen the Robin Williams movie “What Dreams May Come”, there is a scene where his spirit guide brings him to a gigantic library of thick books to find the story of his life.  I suppose now they would be a series of tweets.  As a book lover, I always wanted to go to that library and find out what the deal was with me.  

But the library is here, right behind me, piled on the floor.

I’m sitting upstairs in front of my old PC, a ten year old dinosaur I use mostly for archiving.  I’m waiting for it to load and maybe I’ll run another virus scan on it.

Boredom and horniness somehow always go together.  When I sit here idly, the mind wanders to a default position that often centers on sexual fantasy.  I turn around in my chair to see what’s handy on the bookshelf and on the bottom shelf, spilled out onto the floor is an untidy stack of my old diaries.

I pick up the one on top, which turns out to be July of 2005.  We were getting ready to move from Texas to Georgia.  I start thumbing through it.  An entry catches my eye in which I’m angsting about my cat Ronnie whom the airlines won’t take, my beloved old Audi which the movers won’t take and I’m expressing my loyalty to make sure they both arrive somehow.  In a sentence there is a long thought about the meaning of loyalty.

I’m thinking, I used to have more teeth in my head back then.  It wasn’t so long ago, what happened?

When you read an old diary, what stands out most is the sheer transience of things.  The people are gone and dead or moved on, or most of them have simply vanished downstream, these people you saw everyday and cared about.  What was their fate, what became of them?  These things that you were so monumentally worried about, which occupied your world in the moment, now you had forgotten they ever worried you.

Diaries are the only karmic record you’ll ever have.  There may be a library up in the sky somewhere but by the time you get to it, it won’t matter all that much.  It’ll just be an interesting story that doesn’t have any great consequence except what you attach to it.  The diaries in this world that actually do record your story and your karma, more than any other thing, tell you what you’ve lost.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

What have I been reading?

Books are one of life’s sexiest pleasures, right? The advent of ereaders and Kindle has liberated our reading, brought the world of literature swirling from the ether and right into our eager hands. Well, mine anyway. No longer do I need to bend back the spine of the latest helping of smut so as not to broadcast my questionable taste in erotic fantasy to the other commuters on the train. No longer do I need to use up precious kilos of baggage allowance to take a pile of essential books on holiday. Happy days.

So yes, I love my kindle. I’ve already worn out one and I’m well into my second. But nothing replaces the heady feel of an actual book in my hands though the joy of being read to comes a close second. I love audiobooks almost as much as paper ones.

Usually I listen in the car, on my own. And on trains. I can watch the countryside whizz past and enjoy a private moment with great and uplifting literature. Or not. Although I do have some smut in my Audible library I mostly go for other genres – modern romance, some paranormal, historical perhaps. Here are three very different sorts of stories that I’ve listened to and especially loved in recent weeks. They all have one thing in common - a feisty, intelligent heroine who knows what she wants and sticks to her guns as she pursues her goals.

Nora Roberts is one of my absolute favourites. I’ve never wavered over the years, despite her penchant for head-hopping. Currently I’m a few chapters into Dark Witch. This is the first book in a series so there’s lots more deliciousness to come. It’s a sensual flirtation with history, mythology and paranormal, wrapped up in a modern setting. Ms Roberts blends these themes so well and it never fails to draw me in.

Dark Witch features Iona, who, when we meet her is a lonely, isolated character who craves a sense of connection, of being rooted. She arrives in Ireland on spec, brimming with optimism and enthusiasm, ready to take risks to find something she can’t even define. She’s a fascinating character from the outset, vulnerable yet indefatigable too. She quickly starts to discover much of what she wants in the wilds of County Mayo. This is a story about ancestry, connection, destiny across generations with a liberal dose of ancient evil thrown in. There are a host of strong characters hovering in the wings (promising much for the rest of the trilogy) and a truly evocative backdrop. Oh, and did I mention there’s a gorgeously sexy alpha male too?

My next pick is No Sex Please, I’m Menopausal by Stevie Turner. I met the author at a book signing and the audiobook was a promotional giveaway. It worked, Ms Turner is definitely on my one-click list. 

What I most loved about this one was the quirkiness of the main character, Lyn. Having reached a certain age Lyn has gone off sex. Completely. Problem is, her husband most definitely hasn’t. When Lyn discovers an unfamiliar pair of pink panties in their van she flips and leaves him to his nubile young love interest while she goes off to reinvent herself in Cornwall. There, she discovers a taste for independence, a business acumen she never properly gave herself credit for, and some weird and wonderful new friends who she meets via online dating.

I found myself admiring Lyn more and more as the story unfolded. She’s led a sheltered, narrow existence but discovers depths of tolerance, acceptance and humour in her newfound freedom. Go girl!

My third and final pick for today is The Taming of the Queen by the wonderful Philippa Gregory. I write historical novels myself, so I appreciate the depth of research needed to craft a truly authentic story. Ms Gregory is first and foremost a historian and she gets it right. She knows her stuff, but she’s also a story-teller and can bring her characters marching back across the centuries to astound us even today.

The Taming of the Queen is about Katherine Parr, the sixth wife of Henry VIII. She was the one who outlived him, but by the skin of her teeth. On a bad day the tyrannical Henry would have lopped off her head too. This book drips with the political and religious intrigue which was the hallmark of the Tudor court. Katherine navigates a perilous existence where the loss of her husband’s favour would be catastrophic. At the same time, she is a scholar, well-educated, with a yearning to advance the religious reforms of the time but is forced to defer to the King. Having a wife more intelligent than he is would without doubt cost her her head.

There is one particularly memorable spanking scene in the book, around which the title revolves. Henry takes a cane to his wife and considers her tamed as a result of his intervention. This is no sexy, erotic spanking. There is not the slightest shred of consent or caring in it. This is abuse, pure and simple, the actions of a sadistic and cruel man who genuinely believes himself to be infallible. Henry isn’t even above the law. He is the law.

Katherine submits, she had no choice, but by keeping her head down, and firmly affixed to her neck, she emerges the winner in the end because she survives Henry to marry the love of her life.

Monday, February 26, 2018

In Progress -- #amreading #erotica #literature

Bookshelf and Girl

By Lisabet Sarai

What am I reading these days? Too many books, perhaps. My reading feels fragmented, partially because I seem to have so little time to devote to it lately. That doesn’t seem to have stopped me from being partway through a bunch of different titles, ranging from erotica to literature.

Since our blog tag line emphasizes our sexiness (!), I’ll start on the erotic side.

From the blurb of Golden Shana: The Capture by A.P. K’Ory, you might conclude that this tale is your typical billionaire erotic romance, but you’d be very wrong. Roman Castell is every bit the arrogant, self-centered, dominant hero, but A.P. K’Ory is mostly interested in how he’s thrown totally off balance by his sudden passion for the exquisite and brilliant Dr. Shana Lindvquist. Shana is richer than Roman, more mature and self-assured, and just happens to have a lesbian lover. Roman must change in order to achieve his heart’s desire. 

Meanwhile, Shana is scarred by early experiences with an abusive lover. For her to trust a man is almost impossible, regardless of how powerful her attraction to him might be.

The author portrays the shifting emotions of the characters with delicacy and insight. Though the characters are extreme, their interactions feel genuine. Their nuanced and unconventional sexual interactions burn white hot, partly because the author treats sex as the natural extension of her characters’ emotions.

This is the second part of Roman’s story. You can read my review of the first book, Golden Shana: The Chase at my blog.

In the first chapter of Larry Archer’s novel Stripper or Nurse, a man has a heart attack in a strip club. Two mostly naked dancers perform CPR and save his life. When his up-tight wife visits the club to complain about the girls showing up in her husband’s hospital room, she finds herself French-kissing the MILF club manager and feeling up the nubile valet parking attendants.

How could you not love a book with this beginning?

Larry Archer writes lively, sex-positive, often humorous smut, simultaneously relaxing and arousing. I read an unfinished beta version of this but I’m rereading the published novel now to find out how it all ends. Okay, I know everyone comes, multiple times—but I’m curious to know Larry ties up the loose ends.

Sometimes you just need an escape!

I’m only a few chapters into Portia Da Costa’s Wild in the Country, but so far I adore it. Portia writes so well, really pulling you into her characters’ heads and hearts. This is a re-release of an older novel of hers I never had the chance read. Since she’s more or less responsible for my entry into publishing (having inspired my first novel), I’m reading this for a review, as well as for my own pleasure.

Seelie Kay is the pseudonym of a smart, sassy lawyer who writes about members of the legal profession getting down and dirty. Her Kinky Briefs Thrice is a collection of mildly twisted tales about lawyers, paralegals, judges and the like, getting into each other’s briefs...

The pieces in this book are well-crafted and fun to read, but a bit too abbreviated for my tastes, more like vignettes than full-fledged stories. That’s one reason I put it aside. I’m sure I’ll finish it eventually, though. Meanwhile, Seelie just released another collection, Kinky Briefs Quatro.

At a recent used book sale, I picked up a paperback copy of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. It happens to be a very light, compact volume, so it has become my current “travel book”.

I’m sure I read Mockingbird as a teen, but I don’t remember it well. Meanwhile, current political and social conditions make the novel’s concerns with racism, justice and our common humanity all the more relevant.

Despite the thematic density of this classic, I find I’m reading it mostly for enjoyment. The prose flows beautifully, easy and unobstructed, deceptively simple. Ms. Lee shows us the world through the eyes of a second-grader, with just the right mixture of confusion and stubborn certainty. Her view of her lawyer father Atticus Finch – old (in his fifties), without any exciting talents, loving but strict – deepens and ramifies as she and her brother watch him undertake the unpopular legal defense of a black man.

I’m not rushing this one. I want to savor every chapter.

For my birthday, a close friend gave me Han Kang’s slim, devastating novel The Vegetarian. “It reminded me of something you might write,” she told me. I have to say, I don’t see this at all, since this is an extremely dark and disturbing book that plumbs the savage depths of the Id, as well as exposing the cruelty and dishonesty of society. Still, I understand why she thought I’d be interested. I see many parallels between the way people react to housewife Yeong-hye’s sudden refusal to eat any animal products and my own experiences as an anorexic.

At the moment, this book is sitting by my bed, but I haven’t had the courage to pick it up again. Mostly I read before going to sleep; I’m worried that this prize-winning novel will give me nightmares. Still, I know I’ll return to it eventually. Even if it were not a gift, it’s too well written and insightful to discard.

(Maybe I should alternate chapters with something by Larry Archer!)

Finally, I’m making my way through Falling into the Fire: A Psychiatrist's Encounters with the Mind in Crisis by Christine Montross. I’m reading this slowly, too, mostly to savor the gorgeous prose and the challenging ideas. The author of this non-fiction book is not only a physician treating severely disturbed patients, but also a poet, a lesbian and a mother of two young children. She weaves her personal experiences in with the accounts of her often disturbing and frustrating patient relationships.

This incredibly honest book shatters the image of the self-controlled, emotionally-distant psychiatrist and admits that modern psychiatry is sometimes powerless to help those suffering from severe mental illness. Even more boldly, it questions whether we can always draw a clear line between “normal” and “abnormal” thoughts and behavior. Dr. Montross’s sincere dedication to her patients as well as her courage in being willing to ask difficult questions makes this an inspiring and satisfying read.

Seven books in progress! Sigh. 

Lest you think I never finish anything, I will mention a delightful novel I did complete recently. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman provided both entertainment and food for thought. You can read my review here.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Therapy of Negotiation

A few years back, I had an interesting discussion a friend and fellow author. We were talking about the Fifty Shades phenomenon, and we both remarked how we thought it would be interesting to see a bit of a switch (no pun intended) in the Billionaire BDSM world. For surely, if someone has so much power and responsibility in real life, then submission would more likely be their boudoir shenanigans of choice.

From that, we formed a seed, and that seed grew into a three-book trilogy. We've since unpublished it, but she's very kindly given me permission to work the trilogy over and republish it under my own name. I'm still in the very early stages of doing exactly that, but one of the big hurdles at the start of the entire trilogy is getting our female billionaire, Christina Pocock, to accept her situation.

Let the negotiation commence!



Well, Mason. Thanks for a wonderful year. I cant tell you how much Ive enjoyed losing two valuable hours each week, all for nothing.
 If youd done the exercises as I instructed, youd have used six hours. He smiled congenially but the strain in his voice was apparent.
I dug my cellphone out of my Louis Vuitton Olive Monogram Antheia Leather Hobo. Which is why I didnt.
Which is why youve failed at therapy and why you are failing at life itself.
The deadpan delivery of those words shocked me. Taken aback, I sucked in a breath and, for a moment, considered throwing my phone straight at his stupid smiling face.
What the fuck did you just say? Have you seen the size of my house? My portfolio of investments? And Ive failed? If anything its you whos failed, Mason. Youre supposed to cure me.
Mason folded his arms. Christina, weve discussed this rudeness of yours.
Im not being rude; Im being efficient, getting right to the head of the matter, which is your lack of results.
Theres a difference between efficiency and rudeness, Christina, and you are being—”
I dialed Simons number. Bring the car around. Then snapped my phone closed and turned to leave.
Mason, I dont want to appear...efficient, but I have places to be.
He surprised me by rushing to the door. I was unprepared for such animation. Standing there filling the doorframe and blocking my exit, for a moment I almost took him seriously. But, in his khaki pants and black Oxford shirt, and especially with those blue eyes of his narrowed behind dark framed glasses, Mason looked as if hed just passed Door Security 101. So why are you still here?
The unfamiliar steel of his voice seemed to carry a lilt of taunting. I nodded at the hallway behind him. Im hardly going to climb over you.
You know what I mean. Why havent you gone to yet another doctor?
Because no-one else will take me. Because Ive carved a sharp-tongued path through them all. No way Id expose myself like that. Not to this nobody. He already had too much of me sitting in his notebooks. I pulled out my gold cigarette case and flipped it open. I really dont know.
Christina, you cant smoke in here.
I rolled my eyes. Tiny lives with tiny rules. Mason, my company owns this building. One of my companies, anyway.
He produced a business card from his pocket. This is it, Christina. Your last chance.
I glared at the card, but he didnt waver. Just held it steady as I blew a stream of smoke into his face. Finally I took the thing and checked it over.
Room 212
Master Sweet
I see your people are no better than mine. I should proof-read for you.
Sadly, he didnt rise to my taunting. He remained remarkably collected, delivering his deadpan statement. Master Sweet is not a room.
I tapped the ash from my cigarette into a potted plant by the door. So what is it? Candy?
Radical therapy. Ive tried the softly-softly, tell me how that makes you feel method. Its had no effect. Clearly you need a more hands-on approach. He tapped the edge of the card in my hand. And what youll find in that room will gel perfectly with your currentaddictions.
Why didnt he just come out and say it? I fuck a lot. So what? It was just another thing that no-one else could get right for me. Though I had to admit, any therapy involving sex might be worth a try. And how much is this radical therapy going to cost me? Time is money you know.
Hotel Alexander. One hour.
One hour? Youre cute, Mason, but you didnt answer my question. I stopped just short of pinching his cheek.
Im quite serious, Christina. Time and money are irrelevant.
Oh, god, youre a fucking hippie.
Christina. His voice was all cold steel now, which shocked me into an unfamiliar silence. All your wealth will not buy you your life back. You attend this session. Otherwise were done.
My first reaction was just to turn and walk. He had no power here. Half of his flea market office furnishings were paid for by my therapy sessions.
But the sharpness in my chest stopped me. The weight of all my responsibilities made it hard to breathe. All those investments. All those companies. The stocks, the properties, the...oh, what are they called? People, thats it. And the idea of spilling all my dirty secrets to yet another therapistif I could find one I hadnt sent blubbering into therapy themselvesactually gave me a flood of desperate affection for this earnest lummox in front of me. I stared at Mason, hoping to convey without wasting any more useless words, my utmost desire that he end this little game he was playing. But even after moments of near-awkward silence, hoping hed crumble, I realized he showed no sign of doing so.
Youre actually serious, arent you? Mason, I cannot simply blow off my entire afternoon. Even without all my other meetings, there is a stack of paperwork on my desk thats even taller than you. The thought of all the work piling up gave me heartburn. No one in my office could be trusted to do the job right.
He shook his head. His expression finally changed into one of hangdog sadness. Thats exactly the trouble, Christina. Youre the tightest-wound person Ive ever met. Socially or professionally. Youve carved out this worldview and you wont be swayed. But I assure you that the ulcer, the angina, and the panic attacks will not be tamed by condescension or...efficiency. What you need to learn is how to let go of control and allow others to shoulder some of the responsibility.
Fuck this little man and his microscopic life. If he wanted to call me weak, I could easily expose the same pathetic quality in him. I traced my fingers over the soft skin of my breast as I leaned forward and whispered straight into his ear. You know, Masontightness in a woman can be quite a desirable quality.
If my heavy breathing and display of cleavage had any effect on him, he hid it well. He just leaned against me and whispered back. Christina, Im your therapist. Weve talked about your childhood, your adolescence, and...all the things youve done to get where you are. Are you sure your current tightness isnt just a reaction to all your earlier...looseness?
I barely registered that Id moved, yet suddenly my palm was tingling and Mason was clutching his cheek, his glasses lying like a crushed insect on the floor.
A ball of unreleased scream sat in the base of my throat and made it almost impossible for me to speak, but I managed to strangle out a yell. You voyeuristic cunt! You get off on my exploits, dont you? I bet you finish every one of our sessions with a ten-minute jerk-off! I almost spat in his face. Or maybe you only last three.
Mason shook his head and rubbed at his reddened flesh. To my surprise he laughed. Was it something I said?
I closed my eyes and pushed a few stray hairs back behind my ear. I let a long breath seep out of me as I regained my composure. You be sure to send me the bill for those glasses, Mason.
One hour. Hotel Alexander. His voice faded slightly as I reached the elevator. No excuses, Christina.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

What I Know About Negotiation ( #BDSM #HardWonKnowledge )

by Annabeth Leong

My first experiences with BDSM, I think I’ve said before, happened in a context with no negotiation. I was so young and naive that I didn’t know negotiation was possible. And I was really turned on by what happened, but I was also harmed by it, and I had no tools to make the key distinctions this reality required.

Later, older and wiser, I learned about safewords and negotiation and playing responsibly and all that sort of thing. But I also learned how hard it is to live out the ideals people express about that stuff in BDSM communities.

I’m not as good at negotiation as I would like to be. I don’t always know how I’m going to feel about something in advance and I don’t always know how to account for that ahead of time or how to react to it when it comes up. Sometimes, I feel really ashamed about this. It feels like a really bad thing to have to admit something like I should have used my safeword and I didn’t. In my experience it’s hard to find honest conversations about those sorts of problems.

Here are some things I’ve figured out, for what they’re worth:

If someone dismisses the idea of negotiating or wants to gloss over it, watch out.

I’ve been burned by this enough times that I feel embarrassed to say so. The last time I let someone get away with it, it turned out that the person in question was angling for a threesome that was definitely not on the table for me, and huge drama resulted. It can feel like I’m the uncool bore insisting on negotiation, but I’ve been so sorry the times I let people rush me through it or talk me out of it.

Writing stuff down beforehand can help

It really helped me to make a list of my own thoughts about what I did and didn’t want to do. Not even necessarily to give the other person, just to know what I actually think and feel. I’m pretty susceptible to the temptation to say what I think the other person wants to hear. The list helps me stay honest, and it gives me a foundation to work with when someone takes me by surprise.

Hard no is important, but so is hard yes

Negotiations often focus on what a person doesn’t want. I think it’s fun, exciting, and important to also talk about what they do want. It’s a radical act for me to say, yes, this is what I want sexually. It also keeps the negotiation from feeling like a boring chore.

Negotiations should recognize flexibility

A huge innovation in my own negotiations came when I made a distinction between hard and soft limits. There are hard lines for me like, I don’t even want to talk about this, I am definitely not comfortable doing it. But there are other things that are more dependent on the situation, the people involved, the mood I’m in, etc--but I don’t want to do them generally. I started playing around with stuff like, these activities are not first date activities for me, but I’m not saying they’re totally off the table. I felt like recognizing flexibility helped me express myself more clearly.

Things are going to get fucked up and confused sometimes

I wish this wasn’t true, but it just is. Man, it sucks. But being able to deal with it is a key part of relationships, I think. I don’t think it’s possible to have an airtight negotiation that foresees every single thing that could come up. And it’s important to accept that, roll with things as best you can when things do go sideways, and try to be kind to yourself and everyone else involved about it.


So those are a few things I’ve learned about sexual negotiations. And I’ll also say that this is a place where I feel chemistry, too. I have good “negotiation chemistry” with some people, where I feel like we get each other and it’s easy for us to communicate about this sort of thing. That’s good to watch for, I think.

I want to get to “the fun stuff” as much as the next person, but I also know it’s super worth it to spend the time on the negotiation, too. BDSM can involve playing with some pretty volatile stuff. It’s foolish not to recognize that, I think.

And I do try to write about the fun stuff in my stories, too… ;)

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Power of Consent

 by Daddy X

As I’ve mentioned a number of times on these pages, I abandoned coming on to women back when I was a boy and the women were girls. I couldn’t handle the aftereffects of rejection, so I learned to wait for a girl to show interest in me.

I started going to weekly school dances (called ‘canteens’ in my area of Bucks County Pa.) in 6th grade. I still remember my first time. I came home in a state of rapture: I could actually hold a girl in my arms! I found these to be wonderful, if confusing, encounters unless someone said ‘no’ when I asked for a slow dance. That rejection would smack me down to the point where I wouldn’t have the confidence to approach another girl all night.

In my experience it was always the girl who held all the power. I’m talking power of consent. Even as a teen, I could never imagine forcing myself on a girl. Isn’t the whole idea to achieve an equal sharing of intimacy, along with any and all physical pleasure? It certainly was how I viewed  sex at the time—and for that matter, now. Let’s face it, the most ideal expression of desire is when it goes both ways. I wanted to be wanted. For me, mutual desire was the sexiest part.

The method worked well when I became a partner in a bar/restaurant. It was the women employees who came on to me, rather than my taking advantage of anyone by wielding increased power. For the first three years I worked at the place, not once did I have sex with another employee, but after making partner the waitresses (and some customers) began virtually throwing themselves at me. The same thing happened at another bar when I became manager after working there nearly a year.

So these days  I read that it’s really men who exert all the power. Even now, I can’t imagine how bringing a woman home and masturbating in front of her is any kind of come-on. (Unless it’s what they both want, and allude to before the fact.) Clearly those guys are thinking only of themselves.

Thinking one step further, and considering recent consequences for company executives who manipulate underlings, what future does this hold for women who want to fuck their way to the top? They’d simply be using their assets. Shouldn’t a slut have an equal shot at success? Over the years, some of my favorite people have been sluts.

And if I was more of a prick, maybe I’d have gotten laid more.