Monday, June 18, 2012

Four Ways We're "Allowed" to Talk about Sex

It's time for another installment of "All About Pleasure" over at the Erotica Readers and Writers Association blog.  In this month's "Erotica Writers in Bondage," I was inspired to call out the ways the media and publishing industry constrain the discussion of sexuality to keep society safe from the disruptive dangers of carnal lust.  If you dutifully conform to any of these safe-sex approaches, you won't threaten anyone and your work will find its place in the proper category.  However, if you try to break free of these bonds in some way, people are going to be uncomfortable and upset.  But isn't that the mission of the serious writer?  Let me know what you think!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Bound By Lust in a Magical Setting!

This is why I love being an erotica writer.  This past Wednesday, on a lovely June evening, my husband and I scooted across the Bay Bridge in his vintage MR2, pulled into the garage at Mission and Fifth, and walked right into the Good Vibrations downtown store (very convenient if you're in Union Square and need to pick up a rabbit for the folks back home).  There was something so magical about the setting--sleek, jewel-colored dildoes on the wall, a fabulous collection of erotic books, rhinestone, encrusted silk handcuffs--already I was transported to another world, where people can speak freely and supportively about sexual desire.  That was, in fact, the reason I was here, to participate in a reading for the spanking-new BDSM romance anthology, Bound by Lust.

As I drew near the signing table, draped in a sparkly cloth that looked like a belly dancer's veil, I spotted the book's editor, Shanna Germain, looking every bit as lovely as she does in her film noir photos.  I've always been a big fan of Shanna's stories, which are always beautiful, risky and super hot, so it was a real thrill to meet her in person.  As the start time approached, the chairs were filled with the perfect San Francisco crowd.  You could tell from their eyes they were smart and open-minded!  Shanna began by reading Alison Tyler's lyrical foreword to the anthology--which starts off with a provocative quote by the most fun Founding Father, Benjamin Franklin:  "Lust knows not where Necessity ends."  Indeed.

I went next, reading the first two sections of my story "Spring Training."  The male partner is a baseball fan and sets up a special workout for his girlfriend.  References to the World Champion San Francisco Giants abound, and the audience was very appreciative.  Indeed it was the perfect setting in which to read the story as there's also reference to shopping for dildoes.  Then Shanna read from Sommer Marsden's intensely moving "Reclaiming Spring"--in keeping with the late spring theme of the evening.

Next came the Q & A, which can be a little unpredictable on occasion, but this group was great--lively, interested and supportive.  We finished off with a signing on the sparkly tablecloth.  The writing process can involve discouragement and struggle, but evenings like this, when I can connect with other writers I admire (erotica pioneer Thomas Roche was in the audience as well) and celebrate erotic storytelling, are what keep me going with a smile on my face--as you see in the photo above!