Are You A Good Witch? Or a BAD Witch?

23 Oct

Glindaby Madeline Iva

It’s October!  All hail Halloween! At this time of year I’m possessed–it’s like the spirit of some former corn harvest festival queen wakes within me.  I could happily spend this time of year with an armload of mums in one arm, and a pan of pumpkin cranberry muffins in the other. The season makes me feel all witchy-woman, and I glory in it.

Nowadays readers can find all kinds of paranormal good witches to read about with their ley lines kicking ass through various urban fantasy series. (I’m talking about you Anya Bast.) I’ve written about some great witchy book recs HERE.

Speaking of good witches, I have long been fascinated with Glinda the Good Witch from The Wizard of Oz.  The costume of Glinda in the movie will *forever* captivate me; I could stare at her all day.  Yet her character is actually rather irritating in the movie.  I mean, great voice, great opening line: “Are you a good witch, or a bad witch?” But it’s all downhill after that.  However, in the book series, (written around 1920) she’s all art-nouveau cool with this interesting little crown and all understated magic-y.

That said, I still find a huge amount of appeal in a bad witch.  Willow, for instance, on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, was never as fun as when she was being a bad witch.  “Bored now” became a refrain around our house, and I personally love that all black eyes look.

Certainly, when I was little I got into it — I’d go into the bathroom and make ‘potions’ for hours.  I’d start with water and some shaving cream in the sink and then dump in anything else green, blue, or otherwise fascinating from the medicine cabinet.  There was a garden version of this that involved mud, greenery, and the sacrifice of my poor grandmother’s favorite potted plants–especially those with unusual leaf shapes and flowers.

The love of potions continues to this day.  I still love animals, gardening, baking, and herbal teas. What is witchy-ness but a sexier version of botany, a more seductive chemistry, a bad-ass biology?  There is some innate curiosity I had as a little girl and still have as a writer today–a desire to pick up the corner of life and poke underneath it with a stick to see what’s happening amongst all the rot and decay.

DarkDesires

Click to pre-order.

Before paranormal had its way with modern readers,bad witches were always old hags.  Midwives, women with knowledge, and women who didn’t give a damn anymore–who let it all hang out.  Women who weren’t self-sacrifical. They offered their help, yes, but for a price.  That’s some potent ju-ju up the nose of the patriarchy.

At any rate, I invite you to ride off this fall across the harvest moon on your broomstick.  Unleashing ones inner hag feels glorious and slinky–it’s like slipping into a bed with clean sheets just after shaving your legs.  Yet this season is seriously unsung in terms of anthem songs.  To help you celebrate, I’ve assembled an ultra-cool list of songs below. Listen to these tunes and you’ll be ready to lament, wail, and summon up any creatures from the inky reaches of night that your rotten old heart desires.

We of course, are ready to array ourselves in full shiver mode, going through the final stages of getting our first anthology ready for release. Boo-ya! And our anthology is available for pre-order! Isn’t that exciting?

Let us put a spell on you–follow our Lady Smut blog of witchy women.  We’ll bring that old black magic every week.

Season of the Witch by Donovan

Witchy Woman by the Eagles

I Put A Spell On You by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins

Time of the Season by The Zombies

House of the Rising Sun by The Animals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Getting Your Ass Out There For The Sake Of Writing

22 Oct

Woman's legs and buttBy Elizabeth Shore

If you’ve never had the opportunity to attend the New Jersey RWA Put Your Heart in a Book annual conference, you really should think about it. In fact, how about right now. I just returned from attending it this past weekend and I have to say, it’s pretty amazing. Loads of helpful workshops, agent and editor pitch sessions, and best-selling authors giving keynote talks. The editors and agents often stay on long after the official pitch sessions, and chatting them up at the bar or in the after conference party is completely doable. Plus, it’s not a giant overwhelming mega-conference like RWA National where you can easily feel as lost as a mouse in a maze.

One of the keynote speakers this year was the wonderful Susan Mallery, whose work has appeared repeatedly on the New York Times bestseller list and who has thus far in her career sold over 25 million books. That’s a shitload of books. How has she achieved thiat kind of success? Susan, in her presentation, told us eager listeners that she’d share her secret. Ooooooh, goody. We all leaned forward, like people in an E.F. Hutton commercial, eager to catch every word. Then Susan told us. The secret to becoming a bestselling author, she said, was to do one thing and one thing only. Show up.

Wait … what? Show up? That’s it? What about just writing a great book? That’s what we keep hearing over and over. Write a great book. Well, of course, this whole writing thing starts with having a great book. That’s a given. But let’s face it, there are a lot of writers who’ve written great books. There are a lot of great books out there that will never see the light of day. They’re collecting real or virtual dust on the shelves, never having earned the acceptance of an editor who says she’s buying it. The problem, according to Mallery, is that the writer hasn’t done enough showing up.

There are variations on the theme of Mallery’s statement, such as “you’ve got to be in it to win it,” but the essence of the meaning is clear. Yes, you have to have a product to sell and promote and get yourself on a best seller’s list. Without that you have nothing. But showing up in many ways is much, much harder, particularly for writers who, by nature, are often raging introverts. Show up? we might sniff. As in, like, talking to people? Eeeeewwww.

But yes, as in talking to people. As in going to conferences, signing up to do workshops, attending book signings, chatting up your readers. There’s also, Mallery pointed out, virtual showing up. We all know we need to be active on social media. We know it, but so many of us don’t do it, at least not to the extent needed. We’re busy. We have jobs We have families. We need time to write. It’s all true, but making yourself visible is nowadays not a nice-to-have luxury, it’s a make-it-or-break-it fact of the writing life.

New York Times best selling historical romance author Madeline Hunter echoed Mallery’s statement about showing up when she pointed out how important it is to put yourself out there as an author. Not only do you need to build a fan base of readers, but Hunter made a rather sobering statement about the state of the industry when she said that nowadays slow sales can tank a career, even if it’s on a first book. The expectation on us authors to promote promote promote is a given, and if a publisher sees an author less than eager to become a one-woman marketing machine, they can easily move on to someone else who is.

So there you have it – the secret to publishing success. Get your ass out of the chair and show up. Go to events. Give talks at libraries, sign books, talk to strangers in line at the grocery store. Keep your Facebook up to date, Tweet, Pin, write your blog. It’s not easy, but if it were anyone could do it, and you’re not just anyone. Right?

Here at Lady Smut we show up seven days a week with new posts, so be sure to hit that follow button and come along with us. And if you’re in the mood for a dark and sexy read, reward yourself by pre-ordering a copy of The Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires.

Click to get in line for release day!

Click to get in line for release day!

 

 

 

Dark Desires: A $3,000 Orgasm

21 Oct

By Liz Everly

A few weeks back, when Lady Smut held a pre-launch party for our book THE LADY SMUT BOOK OF DARK DESIRES, sex toys were given out as door prizes. They were from the lingerie store Derriere de soie, where we had the party. (You can check out their line of sleek, ahem, TOYS, from their online store HERE.) Such a fabulous and generous store. In any case, it was an odd sensation to be sitting with a group of women talking sex toys and passing around these rather intimate objects and testing them in our hands.

Photo by Bahia Noticias

Photo by Bahia Noticias

I don’t think my mother would approve. And that suits me just fine. Grin.

I don’t think this is something I could have imagined doing 20 years ago. I wasn’t embarrassed and it didn’t make me the least bit uncomfortable, even though many of the women there were people I barely knew. It helped that many of the women there were as comfortable as I was.

But we were all women of a certain age. Most of us have had children; none of us were virgins. All of us had probably had more than one lover in our lives. So, what’s to be embarrassed about with a little vibrating sex toy?

I won the most expensive and probably most interesting sex toy there. It’s the Olga by Lelo. It’s metallic and doesn’t vibrate. It’s much heavier than one would think you could have use for as a sex toy. I thought if I didn’t have kids I might use it as an interesting paper weight–you know it would be a great one for an erotic romance writer.

But then, I looked it up online.

It’s weight is supposedly one of it’s many benefits–as when it’s inserted, it presses right on the g-spot in most women. The other thing it’s very good for is holding temperature. If you put it on ice, it will remain cold—or you can heat it in the microwave and try the warmed-up version. I’ve been sending pictures to my friends and one said, “Now that I’ve seen it on ice, I admit–I kinda want it.”

Well, too bad. It’s mine. ;-)

Here it is on ice:

Unknown-3

If you’re interested, there are more toys here.  On the olga website there is a gold-plated toy available for over $3,000. That’s right. A gold-plated dildo. That, my friend, must be one hell of an orgasm. But if you can spend even more, I’ve seen toys for $7,000 and $13,000. Here is a good review of the Olga. 

In any case, between the new toy I won, and the lovely toys LoveHoney recently sent me, I’m flush with sex toys. Which is not something I’d ever imagine myself saying or writing. But there you have it.

P.S. Please don’t send me any more sex toys. (More words I never thought I’d write.) If you have an itch to send me something, fine chocolate, champagne, jewelry, lingerie will do.  For the price of one of these luxury sex toys, I’d rather take a trip to Europe or a tropical island, where I could, indeed, indulge in all of my new toys.  That’s what’s at the top of my I’ve-been-a-very-good-girl list.  Grin.

In the mean time, if you like historical fiction where dildos ARE NOT included, check out my latest : Tempting Will McGlashen, featuring Scottish blacksmith and an innkeeper’s daughter.  Meanwhile, can we tempt you to follow our blog? ; >

Click to order!

Click to order!

 

Kiersten Hallie Krum Is Away Today….

20 Oct

But will be back next week.

Enjoy this eye candy — our new anthology cover. :)

DarkDesires

Take Me Away: F Coupes and Fantasies of Abduction

19 Oct

 

That's nice, isn't it? It'll be his turn soon enough.

That’s nice, isn’t it? It’ll be his turn soon enough.

By Alexa Day

I love this year’s line of Jaguar commercials. The ones that reassure us that Brits make the best villains. I think they started during this year’s Super Bowl. I remember watching Mark Strong driving that gorgeous F coupe around. Between his sinfully sexy voice and the delicious growl of the engine, I’d have bought whatever the television told me to. It’s probably best that the base model F coupe costs $65,000, or I’d be living in it now.

I lost sight of the ads for a while, until I heard bits of breathless praise for one featuring Tom Hiddleston. Tom doesn’t do anything for me. I’m sure he’s a lovely person; I just don’t find him attractive. As a result, I didn’t pay loads of attention to what people were saying.

Tom Hiddleston … something something … Jaguar … something … bag in the trunk … something … what’s in the bag?

Here’s how it really goes.

When I finally watched it, my first thought was that the bag was too small. I had envisioned a large bag, made of silky black fabric, with a sleek length of rope to fasten the top.

You know, something big enough for me.

I’m not saying that I fantasize about being dropped into the Jaguar’s luxuriant trunk by Tom Hiddleston. I’m not attracted to Tom. If Mark Strong wanted me in the trunk of the F coupe, however, he wouldn’t even need the bag. I’m not just going to hop in because he says to, mostly because I enjoy listening to him talk. But I would offer him only token resistance. I might bite his hand just to see what sort of sound he made, but my plan is to end up in the trunk like a good girl.

The abduction fantasy has been one of my favorites for many years, at least since high school. I’ve long indulged thoughts of being carried off by strong, powerful men who needed me for something they knew I would not surrender willingly. The fantasy’s politically incorrect surface discourages most people from examining it further. I think people struggle to understand that it has no correlation to actual abduction, and I think they struggle with this more than they do with a lot of other sexual fantasies. Because I enjoy the abduction fantasy and its permutations so much, though, I don’t mind studying it from time to time. Themes of power, surrender, control of self and control of others pop up in my writing fairly often. I just think that sort of thing is hot, and I like experimenting with all those boundaries.

The abduction fantasy wears many faces. I maintain a mental shortlist with a rotating cast of fantasy kidnappers. (And they are all mine. Not sharing them.) Some of them are good-looking sophisticates, guys like Mark, who want something I have. A state secret. Launch codes. Passwords. Knowledge of arcane languages. They’re endlessly patient and wonderfully seductive, and this flavor of fantasy is more about power than about sex. I mean, until I give up the launch codes or whatever, the plot for world domination is at a standstill, right? I’ll get to see just what this person will do to get what he wants from me. That’s a nice train of thought.

Click to get in line for release day!

Click to get in line for release day!

And sometimes I’m dealing with a rough character with baser interests. These guys look more like Jason Statham, accustomed to the use of force. They might deliver me to someone who wants the launch codes, but along the way, any number of inappropriate things might happen. This one’s about power, too, but not in the same way. It’s about being desirable enough to erode a man’s self-control. It’s about driving a man beyond regard for consequences. In a world where successful single women still hear that men are “too intimidated” to approach them, the rougher abduction fantasy, starring men who are not at all afraid of women, will always have a place.

I’m so tempted at this point to get into the family of fantasies featuring us women as the abductors of men. If you’re following my author page on Facebook, you’ve already seen occasional pictures of hot shirtless dudes tied to beds, showerheads and the like. I think that sort of thing is stimulating. But it is perhaps another story for another day.

For now, I’m going back into the trunk of the imaginary F coupe. I’m going to look at the trunk release handle — because a $65,000 car certainly has one — and I’m going to wonder just what Mark Strong is going to ask me for and whether I’m inclined to give it to him today.

As for you, get your own F coupe! Preorder your copy of The Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires for more hotness.

And follow Lady Smut if you know what’s good for you.

Sexy Saturday Round-Up

18 Oct

By Liz Everly and the Lady Smut Bloggers

LS Fb squareHappy Saturday! We’ve got a great line-up of blog posts for you this week.

From Liz:

Barbara Freethy into print, keeping all digital rights.

A new twist on the dangers of sex in the ocean. 

But what was she wearing?  Why it doesn’t matter.

From CMK:

Cosplay is NOT consent: the creepy things guys say

Gone Girl and Why We Need Female Villains (spoilery)

If I were locked in a bookstore, I’d be in heaven; this guy, not so much

From Madeline Iva:

Science has found the Cure For A Broken Heart.

Oh No!!! Oh yes –It’s the annual Wife Carrying Race.

This from Romance University: cultivating cruelty as a romance writer.

This from Romance Beat.com: 10 Ways You Know You’re Not Living In A Romance Novel.

From Alexa:

This problem is not limited to the Sexiest Woman Alive stories, but it’s worth considering anyway.

The primal forces behind sex and terror have held hands for a long time. Here’s why.

Maya Rodale gives us this list of things romance novels teach us about life. Check out 10, 26 and 27 in particular.

A Tempting Man

17 Oct Spinning Gold by C Margery Kempe - 500

Tempting Will McGlashen by Liz Everly - 500by C. Margery Kempe

This week we’re spotlighting Liz Everly’s latest, Tempting Will McGlashen, out now from Tirgearr. In case you need a reminder, here’s the blurb:

Mathilde Miller wanted to be a good daughter and marry the son of a long-time family friend, Joshua Bowman. But she didn’t want to be the wife of a Pennsylvania farmer. She loved her life, cooking on the Virginia frontier at her family’s ordinary. The minute blacksmith Will McGlashen walks into her kitchen, her restlessness focused on him. Fresh from Scotland, with a voice “like a song” and thick coppery hair, her heart belonged to him. Was it possible for the daughter of a Pennsylvania German to marry a hired man from Scotland? What did she really know about Will McGlashen and his secret past?

Well, we know how easily I am tempted by a Scotsman ;-) And a blacksmith, too — think of the muscles in those arms! I’m sold, but then I love Liz’s books. She has a way of capturing sensual scenes with perfect attention to the right details and great dialogue, too. I’m looking forward to catching up with Mathilde and Will as they fall in love.

I’ll admit it’s not my favourite time period for historicals: my alter ego Kit Marlowe writes stories set in the medieval period, the 19th century and the roaring 20s. I only got American history in my schools and was sick to death of pilgrims, colonists and revolutionary war. But you know, all it takes is the right story to get me interested in something again. There’s so much potential for adventure, too. We forget how much of wild place Virginia is in that time period. It’s really on the edge of wilderness and the colonists are interlopers in another country.

You don’t want to miss the chance to find out what happens — and hey, look what I’ve got coming soon: a medieval M/M romance, Spinning Gold. At Lady Smut we do what we can to please you. Follow us if you don’t want to miss a thing.

Spinning Gold by C Margery Kempe - 500

Rogues, Romps & Revolutionaries!

16 Oct

By Madeline Iva

delectable 18th century fashion

delectable 18th century fashion

I heart the messy frosted wedding cake fashions of the last quarter of the 18th century. It’s not just period in time, but a spirit of change — the dawn of Romanticism, the era of enlightenment and chaos combined.

Perfect for kicking off while you're on a swing.

Perfect for kicking off while you’re on a swing.

What a great time – what glorious panache the people had.  A great big mix of good, bad, saint & sinners, cosmopolitian intellectuals and nature loving stewards of the land.  Humanity was just about to raise her skirts and take a big step out of the muddle puddle of misery we’d been languishing in since the dark ages.498EL MONTE-  71.

There was a stiff side to things, to be sure, but also what I call a Wild Child Enlightenment.Fop me Wild child enlightenment

Modern science was embryonic, Mary Shelley was having nightmares of monsters. Western culture began chugging along on steam while great minds reflected on our animal desires and our inner nature.Fan me

Poets and philosophers made love with each other and planned utopian visions high on opium.

Fop me now.

Fop me now.

Freedom fighting revolutionaries took their politics and passions to the streets, wrapping it all up in a bloody red American bow.betsy-flag-crop-main

Tempting Will McGlashen by Liz Everly - 500

Click to buy it now.

Tempting Will McGashon is a romance about that time. With title you can roll around on your tongue and a Scottish hero you’d happily invite into your bed, Liz Everly combines nature worship, small town coziness, and a hot Scot with big troubles into a revolutionary historical that will tingle your toes.

Check it out—and follow Lady Smut.  Alba gu bràth!

If This Cover Was a Man, I’d Have Sex With Him

16 Oct
DarkDesires

If you want a review copy, you blogger/review writin’ gal you, just email me at madelineiva@gmail.com. We’ll hook you up.

by Madeline Iva

It’s here, it’s here!  Just in time to celebrate the second anniversary of our Lady Smut.com group blog is the cover for our anthology THE LADY SMUT BOOK OF DARK DESIRES.

Pre-order it now from Barnes & Noble.  Or let Amazon notify you when you can grab this puppy all for your own.  Word on the street is that it’s releasing November 6th.

I really like the cover.

It’s edgy — like our anthology.

Hot — like our anthology.

Mysterious — you get the idea.

Here’s a blurb:

Uncanny moments mix with steamy romance in these four adventurous tales. 

  • When a vampire materializes through her computer, Brenna Bang finds herself marked for inescapable passion with a tech savvy bloodsucker.
  • Jenny needs to unravel the mystery of what she does at night and whom she does it with in order to subdue the sexual demon inside her.
  • A young woman tries to figure out how to unlock her grandmother’s wardrobe and uncover what happened all those years ago when the goblins came to offer their sensuous erotic fruits.
  • Locked in an abandoned mental asylum, an ambitious filmmaker soon discovers she’s trapped with a Dionysian god.  He offers her a glimpse of astounding future artistic success—but there’s a price. 

Go ahead, tell us what you think below — and win a free copy. :)

For more fall frolics, follow our blog –believe me, the adventure has only just begun!

No Sex, Please – I’m Cuddling

15 Oct
Cuddling, tattooed man

Let’s just cuddle

By Elizabeth Shore

Right around this time last year, big brouhaha was afloat in Madison, Wisconsin over the proposed opening of The Snuggle House, a go-to place for reaping the benefits of “touch therapy,” to help us feel connected in our disconnected world. So cozy! The very thought makes me feel like the fabric softener bear with the squeaky voice. Except not all Madison councilman were snuggling up to the idea, many expressing concerns that The Snuggle House was a cozy front for not-so-cozy prostitution. After much dickering among the owner, a bevy of lawers and a multitude of politicians, The Snuggle House at last opened its doors. For three weeks.

Alas, The Snuggle House is no more. Dang. So what’s a person to do nowadays who just wants an honest-to-goodness snuggle? Or cuddle? Is there no hope? Well, of course there is, silly. All you need to do is download Cuddlr. It’s like Tinder but without the sleazy casual sex association. Cuddlr, according to its website, is a location-based, social media app to find people who are up for a cuddle. And that’s it. Errr … right?

Perhaps I’ve just been around the block a few too many times, but I have to confess, I have … concerns. Am I truly to believe that two strangers meet, hug, and then go their separate ways, a balance of peace and harmony restored in their lives from their quickie cuddle? Maybe if it really, truly worked as the app developers envisioned, then maybe. Maybe. But here’s the thing: if I just need a hug, I can get one from my true friends. There aren’t sexual expectations from them. We’re friends. We love each other as friends, support each other as friends, and give each other hugs as friends. If there’s someone out there who can’t get a hug from his or her friend, is that person I myself would want to be hugging? Or, worse yet, cuddling?

I have visions of using Cuddlr to get myself a nice dose of oxytocin through the warm touch of a stranger, only to have said stranger start groping me. Maybe his arm “accidentally” slips a little too far down as we cuddle and suddenly my ass is getting grabbed. Or I feel his stiff “member” pressed not-so-cuddly against my butt. What then? According to Cuddlr, they’ve thought of that. You can report on the cuddlyness of your cuddler by rating him or her after the encounter as “successful” or “unsuccessful.” Too many bad ratings aren’t likely to get one repeat cuddle requests, and Cuddlr says it bans anyone consistently using the app improperly. I suppose I could, as a  woman, decide only to cuddle with other women. Cuddlr doesn’t allow users to filter for things such as age or gender, but you could just keep declining cuddle requests until you get one from someone you think looks OK. Except all you really have to go on is the cuddle requestor’s Facebook picture, and we all know how accurate those can be. Another disagreeable side effect of the app is that, without warning, a map appears documenting you and your potential cuddler’s whereabouts. Hope you’re not caught up in privacy concerns!

As earnest as the developers’ intentions, the biggest problem with Cuddlr is that it doesn’t take the awkwardness factor into account. People in today’s world are lonely for good reason. It’s hard to meet and connect with people on an intimate basis, even if you don’t intend for the intimacy to be sexual. So an app attempting to address the loneliness factor is conceptually a fine idea, but technology isn’t going to help us overcome how weird and awkward it is to simply start spooning with a stranger.

For a better, safer, and much more rewarding cuddle, I recommend Liz Everly’s wonderful new historical romance, Tempting Will McGlashen. We’re celebrating its release this week, so why not give yourself a good ol’ self cuddle and get yourself a copy. And while you’re at it, be Tempting Will McGlashen by Liz Everly - 100sure to follow Lady Smut. We’ll wrap our virtual arms around you and we promise not to grope.

 

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 12,665 other followers

%d bloggers like this: