Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Conqueror Womb



Any friend of mine could guess the moment I decided to write a story for Conqueror Womb: Lusty Tales of Shub-Niggurath—the moment I heard of it. Now, this monstrous book is finished and ready for release on February 10. In the meantime, you can preorder it from Martian Migraine Press.

Here's what the publisher has to say:

Pulsing with some of the best writers working today in Lovecraftian horror (Wilum Pugmire, Molly Tanzer, Brian M. Sammons to name a few!) and mind-bending erotica (Shon Richards, Annabeth Leong, Jacqueline Sweet to name a few more!), plus a host of fresh talent! (Feel quite free to bow before the ToC, too, we won’t mind…)

Praise & Abundance! - introduction by editors Justine Geoffrey & Scott R Jones
This Human Form – Lyndsey Holder
That Hideous Thing – Ran Cartwright
Unsatisfied – Brian M. Sammons
Mater Annelida – Victoria Dalpe
The Potboiler Sigil – Luke R. J. Maynard
All This For the Greater Glory of the 7th and 329th Children of the Black Goat of the Woods – Molly Tanzer
Babymama – Kenton Hall
Our Child – Annabeth Leong
Boy – Don Webb
Pieces (2) for String Octet – Copper Sloane Levy
The Whisperer in the Vagina – Shon Richards
Obsidian Capre Aegagrus – Christopher Slatsky
Dirtymag – Jonas Moth
With Honey Dripping – Christine Morgan
In the Down Deep Down – Jacqueline Sweet
The Scarlet Scripture – Ambrosius Grimes
Within Your Unholy Pit of Shoggoths – Wilum H. Pugmire
Blossom – Rose Banks
The Conqueror Womb: Parsing Shub-Niggurath (essay) – Scott R Jones

I'm really proud of my story in this book. As is proper for weird erotica, I plumbed the depths of my personal nightmares for your disturbing pleasure. And, as a Valentine's Day release, this provides lovely balance for some of my sweeter work. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Sex and Romance in a Limited Time



Thirteen years ago, I spent two weeks in Hong Kong, and I've never forgotten the monasteries I visited while I was there. Whenever I've traveled, I've always most enjoyed religious sites, and this is partly because there's a wordless sense of communion in these places. Locals mingle with tourists and tourists from all parts of the world mingle with each other. Some people are there because the guidebooks told them to be, and others because they have sincere religious feeling, but I've never felt that these different purposes take away from the experience.

When I saw the call for Kristina Wright's XOXO: Sweet and Sexy Romance, which asked for very short pieces of erotic romance, I thought of travel right away. In so many fantasies, vacations unite these three elements—limited space and time, eroticism, and romance. As I began to ponder what sort of vacation would do the trick, vivid memories of Hong Kong came to mind.

I was 19 when I visited there, and I remember meeting a man who lived in the same state I did. We had a twenty minute conversation about how exciting it was to be "from the same place," and it struck me as funny. I knew I didn't feel general affection for every fellow resident of my fair state when I was at home. Traveling, however, changes definitions of same and different. The inherent time limit imposed by plane tickets also won't allow would-be lovers to dawdle or build up a slow burn.

I didn't take a new lover in Hong Kong—I had traveled there with my lover at the time, but I've hooked up while on vacation, and I recall the urgency and romance of it. I have always had the knowledge in the back of my mind that I can't afford to be foolish and lose sight of the fast-approaching end. When the vacation is over, I have never wanted to walk away with a broken heart. But my story in XOXO indulges the fantasy that this time it's different.

I didn't think the fantasy was enough on its own, though. I wanted to show why these two people were right for each other—why they needed to stay together beyond the vacation, when they would return to the everyday definition of common ground. I wanted the reader to believe it would be worth the five-hour drives required for them to hold onto what they found in Hong Kong.

First, I showed them traveling to a couple of the places I loved most.



The "Big Buddha" is near the Po Lin Monastery on Lantau island. (The picture here was taken by Mimihitam and posted under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license). It's a very touristy site, and what I remember most was the long, terrifying bus ride required to get there. My characters meet on this bus, and this is where they first feel a connection—a sense of joy and freedom that might be the vacation, but just might be the result of being together.



Once they've established that connection, they decide to continue traveling together, and they visit the Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery in Sha Tin. (The picture here was taken by CPJoseph and posted under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license). This is the most incredible place I've ever been. As you can see from the picture, the statues go on forever, and as far as I could see each is different. Each has its own lesson and story. I remember climbing the stairs to the monastery already aching at the knowledge that I would forget much of what I was seeing.

As far as the story, I wanted the idea of unified difference to come through for the characters. And this is the location where they have their first kiss.

Soon, Amy, my heroine, knows she is falling for the hero, and begins to struggle with wanting more but knowing how naive it is to believe that this relationship can last beyond the trip. This is where I bring out the erotic aspect of the story. Together, these characters aren't just passionate, they're sweet and playful. Part of what I love about writing erotica is that I believe sex offers some of the best possible opportunities for characterization. It's my hope that seeing the way these two are in bed with each other helps the reader believe in them.

Often, writing involves taking fragments of my experience and remixing them in ways that seem surprising and mysterious when I consider what I've decided to throw together. "When the Vacation Is Over" is a good example of that process. Each part of the story, however, comes from something in my heart that's vivid and cherished. I'm so pleased to have been included in XOXO (this is my first time appearing in an anthology edited by Kristina Wright, and I'm stoked to be part of one of her excellent books).

***

This is part of the Won't You Be Our Valentine? blog tour for XOXO: Sweet and Sexy Romance.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The Universe Where Katie Lived



Like A Trip Through the Mirror: Lesbian Love in Alternate Realities
, edited by Kathleen Tudor, was recently released by Circlet Press, and I'm happy to tell you that it includes my story, "The Universe Where Katie Lived."

In this story, Genevieve has discovered that reality "slips" whenever she has an orgasm. Over the years, she has learned various ways of regulating herself to avoid losing Katie, the woman she loves. For some time now, she's been insulated from her fears because a spinal injury in her current reality has made it impossible for her to come the way she always did. Genevieve's determined avoidance of orgasm, however, is causing tension between the lovers, and Katie presses for the chance to please Genevieve, unaware of the potential consequences. Here's a snip:

Katie answered with a kiss that deepened into a wild, full-on grope session. For the first time in years, Katie slid her hand down to Genevieve’s waist. Genevieve twitched. This was the transition point between where she had feeling and where she didn’t, and the gentle stroking of Katie’s fingers burned and scratched one moment, then faded to a ghostly breath the next. She sucked her breath in between her teeth and clamped her eyes shut.

“Sshh,” Katie soothed, kissing all over Genevieve’s face and down the side of her neck. “Let me touch you.”

Genevieve focused on relaxing her breathing, and slowly the raw, quivering sensations around her waist made her upper body writhe. An ache she hadn’t known existed began in the interior of her belly. Her hand moved toward her clit in a long-forgotten instinct.

“Good,” Katie said. “Can I lift you into your chair and take you to the shower?”

“Why?” Genevieve moaned, frantic and confused.

“I thought hot water would feel good. Besides, I want to clean you up real good to get you ready for all the dirty things I’m going to do to you.”

“OK,” Genevieve said again.

But once they reached the shower, Katie had more surprises. She pulled off her dress to reveal a lace bikini, through which Genevieve could see her erect nipples. She turned the water on and washed Genevieve with painstaking care and sensuality, covering every part so thoroughly that Genevieve was panting by the time it was through, just from thinking about Katie’s fingers gently working her over from forehead to asshole to feet and back.

Cleaning accomplished, Katie rubbed her body all over Genevieve’s, and imagination or not, Genevieve was sure she felt flashes of the rough stroking of Katie’s lace-covered breasts rubbing her thighs, and maybe even a few moments of the stabbing pleasure of Katie’s tongue across her clit.

“You’re wet,” Katie breathed, in a tone of wonder.

“I’d have come seven times by now if I could,” Genevieve said helplessly.

“People say they can still come, even if they don’t have sensation,” Katie said between licks, reaching her fingers up to tug at Genevieve’s lips and probe into her mouth. Genevieve opened for them and gasped when she tasted her own arousal slick and tangy on Katie’s hand. Katie continued, working her fingers in and out of Genevieve’s mouth. “People say it’s different, but it’s still an orgasm.”

A finger of doubt rippled up Genevieve’s confused spinal cord. She didn’t want to stop anything or fake anything. Would it be safe to let Katie continue? If she came only in her mind, would that count, as far as the universe was concerned?

I did a lot of research when I was writing this story, and hope I've done justice to the sexual experience of people with spinal injuries. There's not nearly enough information on this subject. Most of what I found was about fertility, not pleasure, and I found many accounts written by people frustrated that sexual pleasure was such a difficult topic to bring up with many health professionals.

I hope you enjoy the story. You can pick up the full collection here.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Call for Submissions: More Smut for Chocoholics



Kev "Mitnik" Blisse asked me to share this call for submissions with you guys. I wrote for Smut for Chocoholics, and that book turned out to be one of the things I was most proud to be in last year. Why not try your hand at chocolate-themed writing, too?

Here's Kev:

Chocoholic needs your unctuous chocolate themed stories!


Do you love Chocolate?

Do you write Erotica?

Did you know you could combine the two into a decadent delight?

Last year lots of wonderful Erotic Writers did just that to bring you “Smut for Chocoholics

This year we want lots more of the same with “More Smut for Chocoholics” (you know one chunk is just never enough!) so we want your chocolate themed erotica, it can be from any genre even fantasy, sci-fi, historical or futuristic as long as it has an erotic twist and features chocolate somehow. We are looking for stories between 3,000 – 6,000 words. So have a few sticks of your choccy of choice and get inspired!
The rest of the information about the call for subs can be found here.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Review: Alison Tyler's Delicious Torment



Alison Tyler's Dark Secret Love had a happy ending. After a long search, the main character Samantha had found the dom who could truly satisfy her desires. But Tyler knows that an ending like that is actually a beginning, and so we are lucky to have The Delicious Torment, which follows Samantha and Jack's relationship as it develops and matures.

Falling in love is one thing. That's a story about a character saying, "I think this person might be who I'm looking for," and then concluding that the possibility is worth a leap of faith. Staying in love is something else. That's about figuring out what to do when the object of affection does stuff that makes you fear you've made a terrible mistake. It's about discovering unexpected truths and adapting to them. It's about never forgetting why you're in that bed with that person in the first place.

The Delicious Torment is that second story, and the title is apt in more ways than one. Of course, Jack finds many thrilling, sexy, and mind-bending ways to cause Samantha pain, but the characters also experience the delicious torment of learning how to live with each other.

This book reads as fresh and hot as the first. Samantha's reactions never dull. Humiliation still burns bright and clear across her cheeks (face and ass). Jack is unrelenting in his sexy menace, always throwing her off balance and keeping her guessing. Samantha is just as wild and exciting. Pain is sweet and constant. Samantha is monogamous at heart, but there are quite a few scenes that include additional players.

Like Dark Secret Love, however, The Delicious Torment is much more than a string of hot scenes. To properly explain why I loved and fed on this book, I'm going to have to talk about something I do not love, which is the concept of the True Submissive. The True Submissive was born to be enslaved, created to be taken by whichever dom comes along first. She never questions her Master. Once he finds her, she becomes the lowercase letter to his capital, disappearing sweetly into his controlling embrace. In the books that feature her, she is often discovered amid a chorus of awestruck whispers. "She's a True Submissive," someone says of a woman who has been "broken" in about five lazy minutes.

I have so many problems with this, it's not even funny. For one thing, I don't think this "True Submissive" is very realistic. For another, the things she's supposed to be—unquestioning, docile, and broken—don't line up with what I think BDSM is about.

Now I'm back to The Delicious Torment. At first blush, Jack and Samantha may appear to have this sort of relationship. He demands extreme obedience, and he expects to receive this devotion 24/7. I would argue, however, that Samantha is the refreshing antithesis to the myth of the True Submissive, and that the last thing Jack wants is a woman who is broken.

Samantha may obey Jack, but it's always crystal clear that it's her choice and for her pleasure. There may not be many explicit boundaries in their relationship, but she draws and defends them where necessary. In Dark Secret Love, she specified that her writing was her own, but The Delicious Torment largely concerns the exploration and drawing of other boundaries. What is the proper role of third parties in the bedroom? How should Samantha deal with signs that Jack doesn't trust her? And so on.

One of my favorite scenes in the book occurs when Jack asks Samantha to call another dominant "Sir."

"He's not—" I started. God, how to put this into words? "He's not you. He's not the same as you." Almost sobbing. "He's not your equal. I don't want to call him Sir."

Jack smiled at me, startling me. "Yet you're disobeying an order."

I didn't know what to say to that. I had no response.

"You'll say, 'Thank you, Sir,' after each blow."

"No."

...

I'm a stubborn animal when I want to be. I wouldn't say Sir. And Jack, after regarding me for a moment, seemed to realize that. His eyes took on a glow.

"Ten extra for disobedience."

I grimaced but nodded as Jack let Alex back into the room.

What I love about this scene is that the characters show each other ultimate respect and maintain their own power while never breaking out of their BDSM roles. Jack obviously loves that Samantha won't roll over to him, and yet he doesn't make any exceptions to the rules.

This is a view into a real, empowered submissive. Samantha submits. She craves pain. And yet she makes real, constant choices about her submission.

I also love a scene in which Samantha refuses to take an extreme action that Jack wants.
He didn't even hesitate. He simply said thank you to the employees and led me down the stairs. There was no anger in his face, no pressure to 'do it for him.'

This view of submission is desperately needed. There is so much misinformation out there, so much pressure to prove oneself a "true submissive." I once wrote a piece about my own BDSM relationship, and found myself criticized online for "all the complaining" I did (which was how certain people described my efforts to give my dom information about how I was feeling). I have heard too many stories about subs getting hurt because they get caught up in the moment and don't remember that they can speak up. Alison Tyler's Samantha gets caught up in the heady sensation of the whole experience, but she never loses herself, and I love that about her.

Jack and Samantha explore the boundaries and dynamics of obedience and rebellion, but another major theme is how they deal with Alex, an employee of Jack's who has developed a complicated relationship with his boss. I loved that this involved trying out kinks outside of Samantha's comfort zone.

Tyler writes, "See? You can be dead sure that you are into one thing, focused on that concept solely, and then be demolished when something else turns you on."

As before, I'm so happy to read Tyler's experienced and energetic voice and to be guided through Samantha's relationship as it progresses. This is a wise and fascinating story. As I get deeper into the series, it's ever clearer to me that Jack would not be the right dom for me, but the thing about an honest voice is that it elicits an honest response. On more than one occasion while reading the book, I trotted out of the bedroom to find my partner, my collar in my teeth, dying to practice our own version of this drama—the one that's right for me. Ultimately, that's what this series is about in my view: Samantha is on a journey to find the most honest way to live out her sexual desires. That's the journey I want to be on, too. It won't end in precisely the same place, but how could it?

My only complaint is that the next book isn't out yet. If you'd like to see my review of Dark Secret Love, it's here.

***

I was offered a review copy of The Delicious Torment, but insisted on buying my own because I'm weird that way. I'm honored to be part of the blog tour for The Delicious Torment. You can see all the stops here.

This is the official blurb:

Alison Tyler has been hailed as the best BDSM fiction writer of today. But wait a minute—is her work really purely fictional? Blurring lines between memoir and meta in The Delicious Torment, Tyler dares to expose in prose that pulsates off the page. Raising all bets that began in the critically acclaimed Dark Secret Love, this coming-of-age story sees Samantha entwined with an older man, a bondage connoisseur and her equal in every way, as she explores the deepest recesses of her master’s desires and her heart.
A Story of O meets 9 1/2 Weeks, The Delicious Torment is fueled by lust, longing and need.

And Alison Tyler's bio:

ALISON TYLER has made being naughty a full-time job. Her sultry short stories appear in more than 100 anthologies, and she is a prolific editor of bestselling erotic anthologies like The Big Book of Bondage, Sudden Sex, and Down and Dirty. In all things important, she remains faithful to her husband of 15 years, but she still can’t choose just one perfume. Find her at alisontyler.com and alisontyler.blogspot.com

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Devout

I've signed a new contract with the fabulous Storm Moon Press, this time for a story that will come out in Devout, an anthology they're putting out centered on m/m priest stories. My story, "Never Not a Priest," explores what happens in a diocese grappling with new marriage-equality laws. Fr. Paul Lyman, a gay Anglican priest who has maintained a secret five-year relationship with a local adjunct professor, finds himself prompted by his conscience to give up his shadow existence and bring his lover into his real life in the parish. Many more details to come.

Odd side note: I seem to be developing a personal "religious erotica" subgenre. I've got several stories now where I include sincerely religious characters who are also sexual beings (and, as is my own experience of being a religious and sexual person, they're not very good at abstinence and have various feelings about whether they should try to be). If this interests you, Run for Your Love and One Flesh are out already. "Never Not a Priest" and "The Miracles of Dorothea of Andrine" are on the way.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Heated Leather Lover



This is the cover for my next Ellora's Cave release, Heated Leather Lover, which is due out in early June!

When Tam Bouie rides into town on her motorcycle, she finds the welcoming committee of her dreams, the beautiful femme Yasmin Miller who seems to have been waiting for a leather-clad butch to come and sweep her off her feet.

The two waste no time acting on their passion, but when Yasmin discovers that Tam isn’t just passing through, she panics. Yasmin fears that Tam’s new hometown will prove far too small for comfort if their love affair goes sour. Her resolutions to stay away from Tam won’t mean a thing, however, if she can’t manage to keep them.