Thursday, December 29, 2011

The accepting reader

Over the holiday break, I've been doing mostly reading, rather than writing. I've read several excellent novels, all very diverse...none of them kinky, I'm sorry to say.

But I've noticed something about myself as a reader that perhaps relates to those of us who read and write kink:

I am an accepting reader.

When I read out of my usual genre, or perhaps more surprisingly, when I read in my favored genre, I'm very willing to put away what I wanted the author to do and just accept the author where they're coming from. So the level of kink doesn't fall in my sweet spot? I'm okay with that. So the characters didn't make choices I liked? That fascinates rather than annoys me. So the ending was completely not the ending I would have chosen? Cool.

I call this being an accepting reader. On the Dear Author website this week, there was a big, mostly unrelated discussion about The Entitled Reader. It concerned price more than content, but I think as kinky authors, readers, and in many cases, practitioners, entitlement or demanding behavior is not so widespread in our little worldview. Most actual kinky practitioners have learned to be understanding of other's kink, even if it's too hard or too soft for our liking.

I know that's how I read. I would rather observe what the author was trying to do than wish for any particular author's work to fall into parameters of my own desire. I would rather be surprised by the author than soothed. Not just in kink literature...but in everything.

What type of reader are you? Accepting or demanding? Do you get annoyed when books are not what you hoped they would be? Or will you follow a good author just about everywhere?

(Of course I'm not talking about irritatingly clumsy and clueless authors who seem to set out to turn readers on their ears due to...who knows why. I'm talking about good, well written books that just don't go your way.)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Erotic adventures in pot scrubbing

Happy holidays everyone! Are you resting after the big blowout, or exhausted by thrashing your way through the Boxing Day sales? Or peacefully above the whole thing?

If you want a playful bit of Christmas kink and haven’t read As She’s Told, there’s a link to an excerpt here that you might enjoy.

I’ve been focusing on family and friends for the past couple of weeks, with no time for writing or even thinking about it. And frankly, I write so little that I worry that this blog is keeping me from getting anything done on Book Three. So, following up to that testing-the-waters fantasy of my last post, let’s see if I can come up with a scene while you watch. I’ll give you commentary on my process (how navel-gazing is that?) If I like it enough, it might even end up in the book in some form or other.

Okay, I’m digging around in my fantasy furniture warehouse… Edging, denial… My mind jumps to a Fetlife group called “Tantalism” and an exchange of posts about the apparently illogical love of teasing and denial. What I threw in was, “What teasing and denial do is prolong the whole experience. Sexual episodes aren't so much episodic as continuous. Orgasm tends to wrap things up and you move on to doing the dishes, you know? But constant arousal sexualizes everything. Even dishwashing.” (One person wanted to make a wall quote out if it.)

Shall I write a dishwashing scene, then? Why not? I’ll go ahead and see where it leads me.

Rachel leaned her belly against the sink and wrestled with a recalcitrant pot, feeling a warm splash soak her shirt and creep its way downward. Grumbling, she shifted her hips. A quick indrawn breath was followed by no movement at all. Hands still in the soapy water, eyes gazing blankly at nothing. All her attention was inward. Transfixed by a fine core of sensation, a stretched cord suddenly plucked.

I’ve been interrupted about ten times by my offspring. So you might as well suffer along with me. Where was I? Isn’t it odd how I keep writing about sensation lately, with almost no visuals?

She wrapped her perceptions around that small nerve bundle. Muscles drew in without volition and squeezed tight, Her eyelids drooped. The touch she wanted was almost palpable.

He liked to tease her. And he could keep it up for hours. It was well into the second day now. Her dreams had been painfully arousing. And chores had never been so erotic.

A step behind her gave a moment’s warning before hands slid past her ribs and over her breasts. She sucked in another fast breath. A couple of deft buttons, and there were fingers tweaking her nipples while a voice whispered in her ear. “Are you washing dishes or giving your hands a bath?”

She sucked in a tiny series of breaths. His own warm breath in her ear made her shudder. Nipples pulsed urgent new messages to Arousal Central. Her head sagged back against the shoulder behind her. She felt teeth at her neck, her earlobe.

“Do the dishes, babe,” he whispered. Slowly her hands took hold again and blindly scrubbed. One of his hands travelled slowly down, slipped inside her jeans and gently circled her public bone. Helplessly her pelvis pressed forward.

“Ah-ah. No you don’t.” The hand slid out from the tight squeeze between her and the sink, and helped the other one do up the shirt buttons.

A protesting whimper escaped from her, and she tried to turn around. His hands held her where she was.

“Be a good girl, now. Or I’ll have to spank you. And you know that just makes you hornier.”

She groaned.

“Finish up here. Just think of all the vacuuming there is to do.”


Less process than I expected, once I got going. What gives me pause is whether I’ve made the language flow, and that’s easier to go over and fix than to write about. It has to sound right to me, or I’ll just keep editing.

Okay, that’s it. Back to the eggnog. Happy New Year, all!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Very Kinky Christmas

Does that seem wrong? To mix kink with Christmas? Before Christianity came along and renamed it, the holiday was originally a celebration of the shortest day of the year, and the fact that from here on out the days get longer and we are getting closer and closer to Spring. So if you think of it that way, what better way to celebrate than by getting kinky with your loved one?  (Yes, I'm quite good at rationalizations... why do you ask?)

I know one of my gifts is coming from someone who makes BDSM toys, because I saw the charge go through our account. I just don't know what it will be. Or even if that charge was for one thing or two things or five things. I know I'm getting a corset, because we had to take measurements for it. Not a fancy schmancy one, but a realistic "wear it under your clothes every day" kind of corset. Not that I'll be wearing it every day, but he wants a way for me to feel bound under my clothes, without actually being bound. I'm pretty sure this will do it.  I bought him tech toys, mostly... nothing kinky at all this year.

Are you getting or giving any kinky toys this year? Do you have any kinky plans? Our girls are spending the night with grandparents tomorrow night, so we'll have a kinky pre-Christmas, though I have no idea what he has planned. I've suggested that maybe I should get my kinky gifts then instead of having to wait, but didn't get a response to that, which means I won't know until tomorrow night.

No matter which holidays you celebrate this time of year, I hope you and your family have a wonderful and safe holiday season.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Old Kinksters Never Die, They Just...

I was feeling a bit depressed this holiday season, and then I went to my husband's work Christmas party.  Now I'm not sure exactly what I'm feeling.

I'll start with the initial depression first.  This is the first time in my life that I've really felt my age.  My toes hurt, my left knee is stiff every time I stand, my right elbow won't straighten all the way, exercise is more and more worthless as a means toward losing weight, and getting a good night's sleep is kind of a hit-or-miss thing.  Oh, and I can't forget to mention that every hormone in my body is part of a vast conspiracy I will never understand.

Now for the Christmas party.  I tried to strike up a conversation with one of the senior managers, who looked over my shoulder the entire time I talked to him.  Another manager flat-out ignored me.  Yet another blurted out by the coffee and dessert table that his ex-wife "was a good wife until she turned into a whore."  The salesmen shook hands with each other too long and too hard, they patted each other on the backs a little too roughly, they exaggerated their southern accents, and threw in as many self-congratulatory atta' boys in their sentences as they could.  The party was so testosterone-filled that I half expected the salesmen to start peeing all over the house to mark their territory.

I really think I could have introduced myself to most of them by saying, "Hi! I'm Saundra.  I write BDSM erotica, and enjoy having my female characters bound and fucked against their will!"  And I think most of the salesmen would have nodded and asked if I'd heard about their 2011 sales record.

Let's just say that the rest of us had plenty of time to just sit back, have a drink and watch the show.

As I looked around at everyone, I realized I'll never again be one of the youngest women at parties.  My clothes will probably never be sleek or form-fitting like they used to be.  My hair will never again be long and thick, since so much of it ends up in the shower drain.  My hormones will probably never be in proper balance again.  I have to now admit that I'm your basic middle-aged, stay-at-home wife, and the mother of eleven dogs and cats.  I read a lot, I work in the garden and I write erotica.  I'm trying to be a better housekeeper.  I could stand to lose a few pounds.  That's my life now; it's the path I'm on.  It doesn't exactly make me the life of the party, nor do I need to be.

And the party made me wonder about a few things down the road.  What happens to our kink as we age?  Do our thinning skin, failing memory and frail bones ever require us to say, "ENOUGH!"?

So I spent some time at the party trying to recall stupid things I've heard over the years like, "Old fishermen never die, their rods just go limp."  And, "Old dentists never die, they just lose their patients."  But I can't for the life of me finish this one:

Old kinksters never die, they just...

Just what?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Romance and BDSM

Something is really, really wrong with me. When I read a book like, say, my novel Club Mephisto, I find romance in really warped things.

A master treating his slave with disdain and distance? OMG, that's hot. Pulling out the whip for the smallest infraction and making her cry? YES, MORE PLEASE. Ruthlessly denying her orgasms for a week or even longer? Just...unbelievably...hot.

I've decided this puts me at a disadvantage in the romance publishing business. When I wrote Comfort Object, the hero, Jeremy, was quite fond of verbally abusing his sub Nell. Calling her names, calling her a slut, etc. I found this just remarkably hot and sexy. Many of my readers, not so much. It's definitely a problem.

My solution has been to let up on the degradation/humiliation/sadism type of romantic interactions in my books, but every so often it still sneaks into my writing. I really wish sometimes I wasn't turned on by those type of things, so I wouldn't freak out my readers by including them. And by insisting they are romantic, but I really think they are.

Not sure what a pervalicious writer is to do... I suppose I'll have to compose some stern disclaimers in the front matter and hope for the best.

If you are a BDSM writer, do you find yourself editing yourself? If you're a reader, do you tend to roll with the kinks you're not into, or do they ruin the romance for you?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Guy and girl porn

I’ve been corresponding with an online friend who is a writer and a dom. As we all know, I’ve been very stuck on my new book, and have been looking around for help. In the course of giving me good advice, my friend also reacted to what he’d read. And as I digested this I was amused by the different reactions of men and women, or perhaps male doms and female subs to the same material.

My heroine’s fantasies are inserted into the story at intervals. Since my own tend to be world-creating with women owned and objectified, several are like that. But to change it up I also inserted a contemporary one that is much rougher and more direct. Here it is, for your amusement: still rough around the edges in more ways than one.

.........................................................................................

“Where the hell have you been?” The voice comes, deep and quiet, out of the shadows in the unlit living room. There’s an undertone I won’t listen to. But it’s raising my heart rate.

“Out,” I say mildly.

“It’s after eight.”

I turn away to hang up my coat. “So?”

“Where were you? Why didn’t you call?”

“Didn’t you get dinner? There are leftovers.”

Suddenly I’m gasping, gripped from behind, one big arm at my throat, the other yanking my wrist up behind my back. The growl in my ear is slow and full of menace.

“Answer me.”

“I was – ow! Marisa and I went out for dinner, that’s all!”

My arm’s pulled even tighter. My back arches and strains.

“Let me go!”

“Why didn’t you call? Or answer your phone?” Another yank.

“Stop! Let go! I forgot, okay?”

“You did what?”

“I forgot! What difference does it make? I don’t have to account to you!”

“Oh, you think not? Just what did we agree to, girl?”

“I’ve changed my mind!”

“Too fucking bad. I haven’t.”

And before the next word can come out of my mouth he’s in a chair with me over his knee. My arm is still cranked behind my back, my dress is up and my panties down. And that heavy hand lands like a two-inch thick paddle. Pain, more pain, on top of pain! I’m screaming and struggling but it’s no use.

Smack! “So you don’t think you –“ Smack! “-- have to account to me?” Smack! “You can do what you like –“ Smack! “-- and come home when you please?” Smack!

“No! Stop it! Not so hard!”

“Not even a call –“ Smack! “-- so I know you’re all right –“ Smack! “ – you bratty, inconsiderate little bitch!“ Smack!

“Please!” I catch my breath and begin to cry. “Stop! I’m sorry!”

He spanks me until I’m sobbing too hard to talk. Then I’m yanked up by the hair and shoved across the room and over a footstool. Thick fingers slide into me from behind, so easily I know I’m soaked. Then he’s got me by the hair at the nape of my neck and his cock shoves so hard into me my whole body shudders. He’s not holding back; he’s pounding so hard I can’t think. Words are uttered in a breathless growl at my ear.

“You’re mine, do you hear me?” He’s grinding my sore ass ruthlessly, panting. “You said it. We both know you meant it. Isn’t that right?” He pulls back and smacks my ass hard.

I let out a scream and then go back to sobbing. “Yes…”

My head’s yanked back by the hair. “Say it!”

“Yes, I meant it! I’m yours!”

“Then –“ he grinds out through his teeth, “-- what the fuck was tonight about?” He’s gone still inside me.

I moan and try to shake my head. My cunt is convulsing desperately around him. His body strains against me and he tightens his grip.

“Did you want to know --“ he growls – “whether I meant it?”

“Maybe….yes...I don’t know….”

“Got your answer?”

A primal groan comes from deep in his chest, and his hips are slamming me, his cock striking deep, striking gold, shattering me to find the ore that’s hiding, the beauty that’s all for him, and I’m sobbing, “Yes! Thank you! Yes!”

....................................................................................

I really don’t know how I feel about this little scene. Something in me is raising an ironic eyebrow as I read it. I was worried that my friend would see it as rather silly. But this was the scene he thought was the hottest; the others he described as more romantic, suitable for women readers!

Now, my books have both tended to go to extremes that many erotic romance readers find hard to take. Women in particularly are far more likely to be upset by what I write, whereas I can think of only one male reviewer who said I went too far. Perhaps not surprisingly, men can take more, or empathize less, or something that allows them to stare down total power exchange (with added humiliation) without blenching, and without having to put the book down and take a walk around the block.

Granted that in this case it’s doms doing the reading, I still wonder if men are better at keeping up their boundaries and not being personally affected by books or movies. My husband can watch movies that I can’t bear, and will blithely point out the cinematography in a torture scene. It’s a movie; it doesn’t hit him where he lives. I don’t have those sorts of boundaries.

So is there any more to this than the men = porn, women = erotica stereotype? Is the scene above best read by women or men or both?

Friday, December 9, 2011

My Kink

I have discovered my kink...well, not so much discovered as confirmed my suspicions.


Last weekend I was away in Charlotte, NC attending a BDSM conference (LeatherFET). It was a wonderful experience for me. Very eye opening and informative. I wish I'd been able to attend the classes... not that I couldn't, I simply didn't. But that tends to be my habit, I go to a conference the first time to get a feel for what it's like, and the second time I actually get learning accomplished.


The people were wonderful and willing to answer questions. The vendors had some awesome items for sale. It was a toss up for me whether it was Dr. Clockworks the violet wand seller or the guys from Mayhem for Men with their cool corsets that interested me most.


As for my kink, I learned just how much I like the whip. Being used on me that is, not me using it. I'm way too much of a spaz to ever wield a whip safely. I missed the class on bullwhips (which I could kick myself for) but it was fascinating to watch the gentlemen who was handling the whips work. I didn't get the courage up to try it until another person I knew did it. But once I did...oh, my, I really didn't want it to stop.


I guess you could say I'm a bit of a masochist, but I now fully understand how my character, Vance, uses the pain to focus his emotions. I've always known I had a high threshold for pain, but it wasn't until I was on the St. Andrews Cross that I realized I could actually enjoy it.


Even better...I have an entire scene floating around in my head. Just have to find the right book to put it in.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

E Readers

Someone loaned me a book to read a few weeks ago. An actual paper book. It was also a hardcover, which made it way heavier than my Kindle. I was so frustrated with it -- I couldn't change the font, I couldn't just flip the cursor down to look up a word, I couldn't switch to my tablet at night to read in the dark, I couldn't put it in a ziplock baggy and read it in the tub, and I had to scrounge for a bookmark when I stopped reading for a while. And it weighed a ton in my purse. Oh, and everyone at my daughter's dance class knew what I was reading and felt the need to ask me about it (or talk to me about it if they'd already read it) while I was trying to read. I've read regular paper books for the vast majority of my life, but to go back to them now is frustrating. And awkward. You have to hold it with one hand and turn the pages with another. I mean, seriously -- how did I survive that for all of those years?

Do you use an e-reader? How do you prefer to read? Paper book... e-book?

Long before e-readers were mainstream, I had a small laptop (that we now call a netbook, but back then I just called it the baby laptop) that ran on Linux. E-book readers cost almost as much as my netbook did, at the time, but I could do everything on my netbook that I could do on a full size computer. Years later I bought a tablet netbook that ran on Windows XP -- it was a netbook with a screen that flipped around flat, and the screen was a touch screen.  When the third generation Kindles came out I got one of them, mainly because when I was traveling for work the battery on the netbook crapped out while I was doing actual work and unless I could find a place to plug back in, I couldn't read once I'd finished working. After a six hour flight where the netbook died thirty minutes into the flight, the idea that I would only need to charge the Kindle once a month (ish), was a huge selling point for me. But then I got it, and it was so light weight, and so easy to turn the page, I was hooked even without taking the battery life into the equation.

I now have one of the new Droid tablets - an Acer Iconia, which I love. I won't be taking it to the bathtub with me, like I do my Kindle (inside of a ziplock baggy, just to be safe), but still, it's another way to read. The best thing about the netbooks and tablets is that I can read in the bedroom after my husband is asleep without  having to turn a light on. Between the Kindle for sunshiny days and the tablet for low light settings, I'm set.

What I'm getting around to saying is that I've got a lot of experience with different ways to read e-books. I'm usually not a fan of dedicated devices that do only one thing, but the Kindle is an exception to that rule for me. It's lightweight, intuitive to use, and it lasts practically forever between charges (when compared to most other devices). From what I understand, the Nook is pretty much the same as the Kindle, whether you choose one or the other would depend on where you prefer to shop, what most of your friends have (so you can lend to each other), and which your local library supports.

For people trying to decide between an e-ink device and an LCD device, you'll need to look at when and where you'll be reading the most.  You literally cannot read an LCD in the sunshine, and you can't read an e-ink device in the dark. You can increase the font so you can read in lower light than you could with a regular book, but that only goes so far, and probably isn't good for your eyes. Speaking of which, if you know someone who is older who loves to read but who has a hard time finding large print books, or who has trouble reading because of arthritis in their hands, an e-ink device would be a great gift for them. I let my MIL borrow mine while my husband was in the hospital (I read my netbook while she read my Kindle) and she fell in love with it for both of those reasons. She doesn't have a computer, or internet access, so we had to get her a 3G version.

What did you first start reading ebooks on? What have you read them on over the years? What do you use now? Are you lusting after one of the new e-readers or tablets?

Friday, December 2, 2011

ACCEPTANCE

I've been thinking about Candace Blevins' blog post of November 23, in which she asked whether we, as a society, are moving toward acceptance.  I hope you will read the post again, as it is well-written and thought-provoking.

Like Candace, my husband and I also live in the bible belt, and I can pretty much attest to the feeling that anything deemed "outside of the ordinary" is looked upon as the devil's work, and I used to be one of the people pointing fingers.

I wasn't only Christian, I was seminary-trained.  I not only studied the bible, but studied it in the original Koine Greek.  I'm not saying this happens to everyone, but I very quickly stopped thinking for myself, and it wasn't exactly going to serve me well to question too much or contradict what I was taught.  I simply accepted that the people teaching me knew much more about the subjects than I did.

I've now become one of the people I used to judge.  I'm divorced, I write BDSM erotica, and I've walked away from the church.  My lifestyle is discussed only on this blog, and I write under a pen name.  As many of you know, it's a tremendously odd feeling to keep so many sides of one's self a secret, but there is much I feel I need to hide.  I've lost so-called friends with whom I shared too much.

Here's some food for thought:  A University of Minnesota study found that atheists were the most reviled and distrusted minority, and "the group most Americans are least willing to let their children marry."  Atheists scored worse than Muslims, homosexuals, recent immigrants, conservative Christians and Jews.  (Why leave out addicts and felons???!)

How do you think your lifestyle would figure into this list as a category?  What if sadists were a category?  Add transsexuals.  The polyamorous.  Cross-dressers.  Dominants.  Masochists.  How would society score you?

I don't know about you, but society pretty much tells me I'd better just keep my new attitudes and lifestyle to myself.  I found more acceptance from society as a self-righteous accuser and judge of others.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Butt...I thought you liked it!

Hmmm...yes. It's true. I'm posting today about that thing we call sodomy. Anal sex. Taking the dirt road. Breaching the puckered hole. Taking the back alley, so to speak.

Okay, I fully admit it. I'm into writing anal sex scenes between people in love. I just personally find it hot, and I personally find it very kinky. Talk about power exchange! A vulnerable, easily damaged little orifice being made to submit to a power much greater than itself. The potential for fear, and anxiety, and disaster. Just...HOT!

Add the pain and suffering angle for the masochists, and the lovely opportunity for tearful whimpers for the dacryphilia pervs. And that perpetual and strange conundrum...do we like anal, or do we just like that we don't like it and are coerced/guilted/seduced into doing it anyway?

A woman in my writer's group hates anal sex scenes in her romance novels. I thought of her as I barreled through my latest work-in-progress, where the hero dom is sodomizing the heroine sub at every turn, and even lending her out to others to be sodomized for her own good. Oh God. Yep, it's hot.

But I know my friend won't enjoy reading this particular book, and that makes me kind of sad. I mean, I understand that some people don't find anal sexy. I have no judgment about that. In fact, I suppose it's pretty normal. But for me, there will always be something about characters doing it "the hard way" and trying to fit that cock where it's not really supposed to fit, at least without a whole lot of effort and discomfort.

Anal sex is pretty accepted, though, generally, in erotica. But mainstream romance... I can't remember very many where anal was involved, unless it was something the bad guys threatened to do to the heroine when she fell into their evil grasp. I think that's a shame, but I doubt it will change anytime soon.

So what's your opinion on anal sex in the erotic or romance stories you read? Like or dislike? Turn on or turn off?