The Naked Male Form

30 Nov

Well. Now that I have your attention.

Romance writers share. We share a *lot*. We share common things. We share…intimate things. We share funny things. We share favorite books and favorite tropes and favorite characters and favorite men. And ladies too. But really, men. A bunch of years ago, when I helped coordinate the #ManCandyMonday hour (every Monday at 9 PM on Twitter) and its coordinating blog (now retired), we shared the menfolk images. Boy. Howdy. (This was back before MCM became “A Thing” and everyone and their BFF decided to run a ManCandy blog/meme. It’s tough being a trendsetter, I’ll tell ya. [Kidding. A little.])

Handsome Is

Yup. It surely is.

One of the best shares I had in recent weeks was to the Tumblr page, Handsome Is, a site that features photos of men–athletes, models, and others–in both candid and posed pictures and even selfies the subject has posted himself.


It’s a visual feast, I promise you. And given, as I’ve mentioned before, that I’m visually oriented…I pigged out.

Recently, I had the need to scroll through nearly a year’s worth of Handsome Is posts to locate the hero inspiration for my Sekrit Project, but I womaned up and took one for the proverbial team. Oh how I suffer for my art.

nekkid ibiza

Cheeky wave. From Dylan Rosser’s Facebook page. Click image to go to site.

Handsome Is is quite NSFW even though it doesn’t reveal the whole hog, as it were, (or at least not as far as I’ve seen), less so the photography of Dylan Rosser, though surreptitiously place stickers keep the goods from public view. This was another romance writer share, this time in my FB feed, that inspired a click-through to Rosser’s Kickstarter campaign (already fully funded and then some) for his upcoming photography book Naked Ibiza. (There’s a seriously NSFW Vimeo trailer on that link, so proceed with caution.)

Faced with all those manly (sometimes hairy), well-defined chests and abs and shoulders and Adonis Belts (Strewth!), I found it mildly unusual to peruse the pictures without feeling like it (the site, not the perusing) skirted the edge of pervy. Like with woman photography, male photography is as capable of skimming that fine line between admiration/celebration and exploitation. But both the Handsome Is Tumblr site and Dylan Rosser’s photography do something that still, to this day, is relatively uncommon (particularly in relation to its female counterpart): celebrate the naked male form.

Photographer Michael Stokes takes that concept and advances it to celebrate the “damaged” male form. Along with his other male photography, Stokes celebrates the naked (or nearly so) soldiers who have lost limbs or have other permanent physical injuries earned during their service. Their physical losses are so far from being a weakness, it doesn’t even bear association, their appearances instead a testament to their inner resilience, feats of strength many whole-bodied men (and women) could never dream to achieve. Stokes’ Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for both books was fully funded in an hour and a half.

Supply meet Demand.

Michael Stokes’ Always Loyal collection of Gulf War veterans (male and female) photographs is now available.

Always Loyal

Holy cats. Click image to buy. Great holiday gift!

I’m a fan of director/photographer TJ Scott‘s work too, particular his In the Tub series (proceeds of which benefit Breast Cancer Research in honor of his mother’s repeated struggle with the same) of male and female celebrities photographed naked in a tub in unique ways. His use of light and shadow particularly create often ethereal images celebrating beauty in intimate spaces.

kris in the tub 2

From TJ Scott’s upcoming In the Tub Vol 2. Volume 1 is now available. Click image to buy.

Not for the first time, I’m struck by how it’s still somewhat unusual to have professional photographers who focus on the naked male form. Our society continues to place more emphasis on naked women than men. Whether this is a (morally) good or bad thing and whatever your sexual politics, it’s yet far more common to see a naked female breast on TV and film that an unveiled penis and even then there’s some Greater Purpose or Reason than the mere titillation for which female nudity is usually employed. (For more on than, read my A Penis on TV post regarding that magical unicorn that keeps on giving, Outlander.) Even the Magic Mike “phenomenon” was treated dramatically different than, say, Striptease or Showgirls.

I know, I know, I’m revisiting a theme here…but it’s a *good* theme.

Romance writers share a lot of goodness both to each other and to others through their stories. We want to celebrate male and female beauty, the resilience and endurance of love and relationships, and the fact that every woman has the right to be the hero of her own story…and find her hero counterpart along the way.

After all, sharing is caring.

Follow Lady Smut. We share all sorts of good things.

I Put A Spell On You: Post Thanksgiving Blog Hop w Rachel Rawlings

29 Nov

Post-TDayBlogby Madeline Iva

Hello sugar plums! Chatting with Rachel Rawlings today.  We met at the Washington Romance Writer’s Luncheon last month, & our chat plus my chat with Caryn Moya Block are part of a blog hop from the even.  Links down at the bottom of this post. :)

MADELINE IVA:  You write about paranormal witchy mysteries — can you recommend anything that you really loved reading in the paranormal realm that’s super steamy or erotic romance?


Click to buy.

RACHEL RAWLINGS: One of my favorite series in the Paranormal Romance genre was Katie MacAlister’s  Aisling Grey series. Another one of my favorites would have to be Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series.

MADELINE IVA: Why do you love it so?

RACHEL RAWLINGS: With Katie MacAlister’s Aisling series the steam factor might not be as high for the more avid erotic romance reader but for me it was a great combo of humor, action and romance. Plus it has dragons! And for Karen Marie Moning’s there’s just one word. Barons. That sums it up right there, lol!

MADELINE IVA: What’s the latest/greatest in the world of paranormal?

RACHEL RAWLINGS: I think the Fae are the next vampire or zombie. They’ve been featured in several popular series over the years but I feel like the legends and lore surrounding the Fae, the creatures and courts involved in the world building is making a resurgence. Vampires will always be at the fore front and so will shifters but I think there’s something new and complex for writer’s to explore and we’re going to see a lot more in the realm of faeries.

MADELINE IVA: Any fav witchy song videos on you tube?

RACHEL RAWLINGS: I absolutely love I Put a Spell On You, performed by Nina Simone. It’s such a great song.

MADELINE IVA: Yes! Love this song so much.  Thanks for visiting us, Rachel!

Lovely readers, find out more about Rachel’s Dark Paranormal/Urban Fantasy and Horror books by checking out her Maurin Kincaide Series at Find her on fb at: and twitter: @rachelsbooks. Rachel is also the founder of the HallowRead Convention for fans of Paranormal Urban Fantasy, Steam Punk and Horror.  Find more about HallowRead at
And visit the rest of our blog hop! Here are the links:

Nerd Girl Official:

Elisabeth Staab: Nov 27

Lynne Silver: Nov 28

Meredith Bond: Nov 29

KellyMaher’ Blog:

Lynne Silver, Nov 28

CelticBarb’s Blog:

Joanna Bourne, Nov 28

ReadLove Blog:

Cristin Harbor, Nov 28

Kimberly Kincaid, Nov 28


Elisabeth Staab Dec 15

Wendy LaCapra Dec 15Post-TDayBlog

Author Kresley Cole: When Dealt the Death Card You Roll With It . . and Then Hollywood Calls

27 Nov

by Elizabeth SaFleur

Today’s author guest needs little introduction, but I’m gonna do it anyway because it’s just so much fun to write Kresley Cole — a name you’re going to hear more from thanks to Hollywood finally, finally acknowledging her wonderful writing and stories with a television deal. Yes, that’s right. Her young adult Arcana Chronicles Series is going to screen thanks to Adam Shankman & Warner Brothers!

But just because TV land has called, Kresley doesn’t seem to be sitting on her laurels. This is one hard-working author. In addition to the Arcana series, she has given us an electrifying Immortals After Dark paranormal series, the erotic Gamemakers Series (sa-woon!), and five award-winning historical romances.  Her books have been translated into twenty foreign languages, garnered three RITA awards, and consistently appear on the bestseller lists, in the U.S. and abroad —  and all the way to the number one spot on the New York Times Bestseller list, baby. That is no small feat.

She took time out to talk with us, which means you get an inside look to what’s next from Kresley. Oh, and she’s offering a major giveaway in honor of her newest release, Sweet Ruin. Check it out below. Sweet.

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: Welcome to LadySmut, Kresley! Congratulations on the Arcana Chronicles being made into a TV series adaptation. How did that come about? And do you get to provide input into scripting, cast, etc.?

KRESLEY COLE: Thank you! I was absolutely over-the-moon excited. We had some TV/movie nibbles along the way, and then all the sudden we had serious interest from three companies. I don’t know how much input I’ll have since we’re still early in the process, but I love to dream cast!

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: We’re dying to know who gets cast, too. In the meantime, tarot cards are central to your Arcana Chronicles storyline. How did the idea of making each trump tarot a “character” with a good/evil bent come about?

KRESLEY COLE: The idea for the Arcana Chronicles came to me a few years ago when I was getting my cards read in Jackson Square with two friends. I was dealt the Death card (the one with a skeletal reaper/knight on a red-eyed horse). I asked my friends what they would do if they saw that guy riding down Bourbon Street. One said, “I’d run for my life.” The other said, “I’d buy him a drink.” I thought, “I can work with that.” As readers know, I love bad-boy characters, so Death was definitely a hero/anti-hero I wanted to explore. The Arcana concept grew from there.

download (1)

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: Shifting to your more erotic stories, do you write erotic scenes differently in paranormal than in contemporary?

KRESLEY COLE: For me, paranormal and contemporary love scenes share commonalities. Regardless if I’m writing about Lykae, Vampires or humans–at heart, we have two beings sharing intimacy. One of my favorite things when writing is to show the growth of my characters through the love scenes.


ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: And we love how you write those scenes! We also love book covers at LadySmut. Yours are beautiful and sophisticated. Do you have much input on them?

KRESLEY COLE: So glad to hear you guys like them! For the last few books and the Immortals After Dark re-releases, I provided detailed character and setting descriptions as a starting point. From these, my publisher’s wonderful art department comes up with a few options, which are then narrowed down until we’re all happy with the final product.

[ Below is one of my personal favorite Kresley Cole covers. We’d love to hear in the comments section your choice for favorite Kresley cover.]

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: Do you have a favorite writing “moment?” Perhaps something just came together or a character you love just appeared?

KRESLEY COLE: Clicks! That’s what I call that moment when I finally solve a particularly troubling plot conundrum, because things finally shift and click into place. But these clicks come with a hefty price, usually only revealing themselves with some sort of physical exercise. At times, I’ll noodle a particularly gnarly scene for days only to visualize it mid-row or mid-step.

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: Can you share what’s next for you, book-wise (or, now, TV-wise!)?

KRESLEY COLE: Sweet Ruin, the next Immortals After Dark installment, is out December 1st. (Pre-order here!) I’m thrilled with the early feedback, and can’t wait to hear what you guys think of Rune & Josephine.

I’m currently working on both the Arcana Chronicles and the third book in the Gamemaker series. I don’t have the release dates yet, but will share online and in my newsletter as soon as I know.

[[Ooo! Ooo! A new Gamemaker book. I’m panting already.]

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: We often wonder where romance readers find authors these days….online or in person. I was fortunate to see you at the RT Booklovers Convention. But where else can fans find you? Do you have a preference where fans can interact with you?

KRESLEY COLE: It was wonderful seeing you at RT, too! I love that convention. It’s such a great venue for readers and writers to come together and share our passion. I don’t get out and about as much as I’d like (deadlines, ugh), but when I do, I LOVE meeting readers. This year, I’ve made a commitment to attend more conferences. I’ll also be sending out more newsletters, so that would be the easiest way to keep up with me.

I’m also on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr.

[Oh, and you can sign up for text message updates from Kresley’s camp. How cool is THAT?]

ELIZABETH SAFLEUR: Is there anything you’d like to tell readers that I haven’t asked?

KRESLEY COLE: I’d like to thank you and Lady Smut for having me! I’d also like to give a shout out to my readers for their amazing support. IAD readers rock! Seeing your messages, reviews, and blog entries makes all those hours at the desk worth it!

Stay in touch with Kresley:    Web site     Facebook     Twitter    Tumblr     YouTube     Instagram

BIG BONUS! Enter the Sweet Ruin pre-order giveaway that runs through Nov 30th  here! Great prizes await, including an iPad with all the IAD audio editions, autographed Sweet Ruin copies, and signed IAD backlist titles etc.  Any format of Sweet Ruin pre-order counts (hardcover, ecopy, or audio).

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ELIZABETH SAFLEUR is an erotic romance author and recovering public relations practitioner who writes, tweets and posts under a pseudonym since her former business clients might be shocked at her new career choice. She wrote the Elite Doms of Washington contemporary erotic romance series after a thirty-year career serving D.C. clients. Oh, and guess WHAT? The first Elite Doms book, Lovely, is only 99 cents (for a short time only)!

Happy Thanksgiving & Kresley Cole & Blog Hop

26 Nov

Pieby Madeline Iva

FROM: all of us at Lady Smut

TO: all of you out there maturely tolerating enjoying your families

We wish you the happiest of Thanksgiving Holidays with as much togetherness and pie as any sane person can handle.

Come visit us Friday when KRESLEY COLE will be here. (!!!!!!!!!)

And on Sunday, Lady Smut is hosting authors for a post-Thanksgiving blog hop. Post-TDayPromo


Fatal Attraction: Why We Love Romance w Danger at The Movies

22 Nov
Can you name this 'fatal attraction' movie that turns the sub-genre on it's head?

#1. She uses his sexist assumptions as a tool to manipulate him.

by Madeline Iva

Hi sweeties!

First off all: HAPPY THANKSGIVING WEEK. We’re taking a short holiday break at until Thursday. In the meantime…

Second: Below is an amazing conversation I had with @Charlotte_Stein and @writerggandrew on Twitter.  We talked about “Fatal Attraction — why we love danger with our romance at the movies.” 

THIRD: I’ve posted great film stills from 10 movies about a ‘fatal attraction’ throughout this post.  They’re all numbered. Try and guess the films down below in the comments section and I’ll give one of you a prize. 

Our discussion was part of the British Film Institute Love Fest—#BFI LoveFest–an online movie & romance festival sponsored by Harper Collins, Avon, Mills & Boon, etc held this weekend.

NOTE: Trying to pin down the conversational threads of a fast and furious twitter exchange can feel like discovering a worm hole in time.  You loop round through tweets and replies, eyes crossing. So this attempt to cobble together the no-holds barred twitter commentary into a coherent dialogue is not completely authentic to our chat experience, but I did the best I could. :)

#2. "Oh, you're good, you're very good."

#2. “Oh, you’re good, you’re very good.”

I did not even attempt to include the comments from the peanut gallery who were DM-ing me during the hour we were on.

Sam Missingham, aka @samatlounge, is the organizer of #BFILoveFest for British Film Institute and Harper Collins, Avon, Mills & Boon, etc. She started us off.

@Samatlounge: Welcome @madelineiva & @Charlotte_Stein to #BFIlovefest. Tell us about yourselves.

@MadelineIvaI’m your host, a romance writer & blogger. @ladysmut1 is a daily rom. blog where we revel in this smexy stuff.

#3. A surprizing dancing Ted Dansen has a supporting role in this film.

#3. Can’t you feel the heat between them?

@MadelineIvaOur guest author is @Charlotte_Stein. Author of 33+ erotic romance books & stories, she’s also a film fanatic.

@Charlotte_Stein: I am indeed!

@MadelineIvaYaz! Me too, but I don’t think I’m on your level…

@samatlounge: Wonderful. Charlotte, tell us more about your books.

@Charlotte_Stein: I’m an erotic romance writer who loves sexy and/or romantic thrillers. And I’ve written one myself: Intrusion.

@MadelineIvaWith me today, is my partner in crime, G.G. Andrew. Hi G.G.! Check out our blog here: .

@WriterGGAndrewIntrusion was GREAT. Enjoyed that read. Darker, but with so much emotion.

#4 This film was based on true events. Not exactly a thriller but still with a solid body count at the end, and SO tortured and sad and hot.

#4 Based on true events. Tortured, sad, and SO hot.

@MadelineIva: Let’s talk about our fascination with this noir subgenre. Chime in, peeps, but don’t forget to add #BFILoveFest so we can see your reply.

@MadelineIvaWhy do we revel in dangerous love that betrays our ideas of romance?

@Charlotte_Stein: I don’t feel like it’s a betrayal of romance at all. I think darkness and danger HEIGHTENS the romance.

@MadelineIvaWhy do we love this genre, Charlotte?

@Charlotte_Stein: I’ve just always loved what I like to call early nineties style thrillers…though only recently did I realize why.

@MadelineIva: Why?

@Charlotte_Stein: BECAUSE they have a big romantic/sexy element. It just ups those stakes, you know? It makes everything much more tense and sexy.

@Charlotte_Stein: The element of danger, of not knowing motivation – just as in straight forward crime drama – adds so much.

@MadelineIva: Unpredictability is constant, consequences completely ignored.

@MadelineIvaI think it has to do with throwing off repression—even if one pays a price.

#5 This one is a total gimme.

#5 Bunny.

@Charlotte_Stein: Exactly! Yes definitely. That element of living for right now and taking chances comes into play.

@Charlotte_Stein: I thought I just liked thrillers, but what I’m a sucker for is the mixture of erotic/romance and those dark plots.

@MadelineIvaI kinda love when you don’t know if the guy DOES love her or not…

@Charlotte_Stein: Yessssss! Like in modern US/UK, there are so few true impediments to romance. It’s hard to build those stakes.

@MadelineIvaAnd you’re left hanging there…til the very end.

@Charlotte_Stein: Keeps the viewer/reader guessing. That’s why I loooooovveee Jagged Edge too. No idea until the end!

@MadelineIvaCompletely addictive!

At this point we started talking about a movie called IN THE CUT, AKA MARK RUFFALO ON A STICK

Mark Ruffalo, dirtier than you've ever seen him before or since.

Mark Ruffalo, dirtier than you’ve ever seen him before or since in the movie IN THE CUT.

@Charlotte_Stein: One of my fave romantic thrillers is In The Cut, and literally for half the film she thinks the hero is a killer.

(I hastily look it up on google, because the title didn’t sound familiar to me.)

@Charlotte_Stein: I love it so much. Mark Ruffalo is amazing in it!

@WriterGGAndrewMark Ruffalo? Sold!

@MadelineIva: Oh I did see this! This is where Mark Ruffallo first slayed me…

@Charlotte_Stein: Honestly, he’s the sexiest he’s ever been. Hot moustache, really raunchy talk…yum.

@WriterGGAndrew: I’m fairly anti-mustache, but I will allow it on him.

@MadelineIva: I really loved him in SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS…too! Such a puppy.

@WriterGGAndrew: (referring to IN THE CUT) Ooh, this is not one I’ve seen, but that is a tasty premise. Adding to the Netflix queue ASAP.

@MadelineIvaMeg Ryan gets nekkid in it. Weird, but I went with it.

@MadelineIva: Why do we risk everything for an attractive stranger?

@Charlotte_Stein: I thought I just liked thrillers, but what I’m a sucker for is the mixture of erotic/romance and those dark plots.

@MadelineIva: Me too!

They're watching someone they think is watching them. Or *is* he?

#7 Watching someone they think is watching them. But *is* he? The plot hinges on it.

@Charlotte_Stein: I think I just like the extra frisson you get from something dark and deadly!

@MadelineIvaPart of it is no limits, no boundaries. Dangerous lovers exhibit total desire, need & commitment to over coming all obstacles.

@Charlotte_Stein: They can get away with things your standard heroine or hero might not.

@MadelineIva: Ahhhhh! No room for goody-goodies in THIS sub-genre. ; >

@Charlotte_Stein: Plus you’ve no idea what they might do next! Ellen Barkin in Sea of Love naked under her coat in the supermarket!

@MadelineIva: Sounds like it’s all about risky boundaries — is that why Mr. Nice doesn’t have a chance?


What propels us to overlook nice men in favor of Mr. Wrong?

@Charlotte_Stein: See I don’t know if this true! I don’t think it’s about overlooking Mr Nice. I think it’s often about finding…

#8 Never has so much depended on such bad poetry.

#8 Never has so much depended on such bad poetry.

@Charlotte_Stein: …a Mr Nice underneath something dark and deadly. He unexpectedness of heat, love, desire with someone atypical.

@MadelineIvaYES! YES! That’s why I like it when we just don’t know about *him*.

@writerggandrew That’s the best kind, a nice guy under a dangerous veneer. Because bad underneath…is just bad.

@MadelineIvaWELL, but sometimes he has REASONS for being kinda sexy yet evil. (got I’m so perverse.)

@Charlotte_Stein: I loooooove that kind of hero! I love just plain evil too but that glimmer of goodness…

@MadelineIvaSometimes all ya need is a glimmer. ; >

@Author_JuliaAsh Perhaps an enticing cocktail of the forbidden mixed with the excitement of taming him???

@MadelineIvaOh! Oh! I was just going to say…

@MadelineIva: Diving into a passionate affair w a stranger creates a cocktail of passion & volatile excitement. YES!

@MadelineIvaWhat are some films that turn the “Fatal Attraction” theme on it’s head?

(Earlier, I had posted these same movie stills here on Twitter before our chat. That’s what I’m talking about below.)

@MadelineIva:  Some of you out there have been guessing movie titles-any movies you’d recommend for Fatal Attraction fanatics? Chime in.

@writerggandrew: A little hokey, but what about Mr. And Mrs. Smith?

@MadelineIvaI think that’s valid — and turns convention on it’s head too, cause they’re BOTH deadly.

@Charlotte_Stein: Yessss great suggestion! It’s not my fave film, but I do love the way it plays with those tropes!

@carollclaudia: I’d suggest Twilight.

#9 Tortured lovers in technicolor splendor.

#9 Tortured lovers in technicolor splendor.

@MadelineIva: So perverse! I love it that what makes him so attracted to her is his yearning to kill her.

@carrollclaudia: Agreed! And yet (*spoiler alert*) it all ends quite happily.

@MadelineIvaIf it doesn’t end happily, then I really gotta have a big bang with the super-evil stuff.

(This is when Sam Messingham came back at the end of the night.  after hosting the facebook version on the same ‘fatal attraction’ theme.)

@Samatlounge: Hey @madelineiva @Charlotte_Stein feel free to chat more, but I’ve had enough romance and erotica for one night, off for a cold shower xx

@Samatlounge Many thanks to both of you @madelineiva @Charlotte_Stein you’ve been marvelous.

@MadelineIvaThe time flew by! Thanks for hanging out & blowing my mind! Last question: Top 5 movies!


My top five dangerous romances:

  • Jagged Edge, because a) Jeff Bridges and b) The way it keeps you guessing.
  • Sea of Love, for the electric chemistry and the willingness to explore the sexy alongside the thriller plot.
  • BFI LOVE FESTSleeping With The Enemy, for having all those dark and deadly elements but a sweet romance too.
  • In The Cut, because it’s gorgeous, and it really goes there in terms of the sex and the gritty romance.
  • And finally Blue Steel, because it feels like a wonderful gender switch of those “psycho girlfriend” movies.

@MadelineIvaThanks Charlotte for hanging. We *lurv* you so hard! People, check out her books — they’re awesome sauce!

@writerggandrewWould love to get this watch list! Though now my brain keeps thinking of sexy evil dudes on Tv…

@MadelineIvaAnother discussion for another day but one we MUST have!

@Charlotte_Stein: You can find me at

#10 There are movies with twists, and then there are movies that are so twisty they're corkscrews--that's this film with it's jail-bait duo.

#10 Brilliant job by jail-bait duo.

@MadelineIva: Fabulous! Don’t forget BEYOND REPAIR folks — Movie fanatic meets semi-drowned movie star in her beach house.

@Charlotte_Stein: (kissy face emoti-con)

@MadelineIva: And lovely people — thank you to my partner in crime, @writerggandrew from @LadySmut1 for joining me today!

@writerggandrew: Thanks, this was fun!

@MadelineIva: Meanwhile, find me and @writerggandrew at

and on twitter: @LadySmut1.

Sexy Saturday Round Up

21 Nov

SSRUHello fellow foodies! Gearing up for Thanksgiving next week? I can smell the apple pie already. Today we’re feasting on fabulous stories from around the blog-o-sphere.  Behold links to the latest and greatest out there in the world of smexy.

From Madeline:

The holidays are coming! The holidays are coming! Here’s The Meanest Thing A Parent Has Said About Your Looks.

You seeing this Lexi? You have an unfair advantage with dating apps if you have a certain name.

Keep yourself safe in the city with the Bloody Meat Cleaver Purse.

Ever tried the whirlpool? 11 Mildly Kinky Things to Try With Yer Guy 

From G.G. Andrew:
Getting over it online: Facebook unrolls new features to make breakups less painful.

With the Star Wars premiere one month away, check out some of the weirdest theories of what’s going to happen, from the theory that Luke actually went to the Dark Side to the crazier one showing how Jar Jar may have been an evil mastermind.

And in other nerdy news: Spokane man attacks neighbor with a Klingon sword.

From Elizabeth Shore:

Apparently America has an anal sex fetish.

Wanna know how smart your kid is? Use this simple raisin test.

More sex makes you more happy – to a point.

Before you gear up for your after-Thanksgiving savings bonanza, check out these Black Friday horror stories.


Why I believe in sexy stories for everyone

20 Nov

by Rachel Kramer Bussel

As you probably know from Dirty Dates week here on Lady Smut, my latest erotica anthology Dirty Dates: Erotic Fantasies for Couples was published last Tuesday, on my 40th birthday. While here we focused on the “dirty dates” part of the title, today I’m going to talk about the subtitle and why I believe that sexy stories, be they erotica or erotic romance or porn, are for everyone, not just women or couples.

Dirty Dates: Erotic Fantasies for Couples (but really for anyone who likes sexy smut!)

Dirty Dates: Erotic Fantasies for Couples (but really for anyone who likes sexy smut!)

But first, a word about that subtitle. As one Dirty Dates reviewer wrote, “Dirty Dates is labeled as erotic fantasies for couples but it works just as well if you are not part of a couple!” They are absolutely correct. While the stories in Dirty Dates do all feature couples, anyone who’s interested can appreciate them. I’ve edited many previous anthologies that had the words “for women” in their subtitle. Does that mean I truly believe that only women can will enjoy or “get” them? Of course not. That’s marketing, and that’s part of publishing a book: doing everything in one’s power to make sure as many people as possible read it. And let’s be honest: if the subtitle were “Erotic Fantasies About Couples,” it just wouldn’t have the same ring.

One of my missions as an erotica and erotic romance editor is to craft books that both newcomers to the genres and seasoned readers will appreciate. This is sometimes a challenge, because no matter what you write, you will never please all of the readers all of the time. Yet broadening the reach of your words is something I stress to my writing students all the time. If you are talking about a highly specific fetish or practice, define it, so those who may never have heard of it will understand. Or even if you’re talking about something that seems obvious, like, say, the erotic appeal of Brad Pitt, still, you should define it for that character, because my take on Brad Pitt’s sexiness may be very different from your character’s.

That’s not to say any particular sexual kink should be dumbed down, but that I want the words in my books to be accessible. In the case of Dirty Dates, I want single people and couples to find something that speaks to them in the stories. I decided to focus on couples because I’d already edited lots of other types of kinky books, and I think the introduction of a couple creates its own set of drama. You don’t necessarily have the meet cute or the when-will-they-hook-up-and-fall-in-love element, but you do have the ability to explore how the passing of time influences how each half of a couple perceives themselves, each other, and the relationship.

Just as romance isn’t only a genre “for” women, and plenty of men are reading and writing romance, I want Dirty Dates to appeal beyond its official target market. Do I think couples will get a lot out of reading from it together? Of course. But my aim in putting out a book of erotica about couples wasn’t to exclude anyone else.

Similarly, I just wrapped up my first anthology of 2016. The title? Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 1. It’s my first time editing this long-running series, and as per its history, it was only open to women authors. But in no way do I think “women’s erotica” means “only women can read it.” In fact, I think men will both appreciate and gain insight into the minds of women by reading work geared toward women; and let’s please keep in mind that “women” is a gigantic category of people who cannot be boiled down to any single book or genre.

We have to be realistic about the fact that, according to Romance Writers of America (citing Nielsen Books & Consumer Tracker), 84% of romance novel buyers are women. I don’t know of any specific statistics regarding erotica. However, through my own mailing list and marketing efforts, I know I do have plenty of male readers, but I believe the majority are women. Both can coexist. But those kinds of numbers are why books get labeled “for women.” It’s a business decision, not one meant to dictate who’s reading.

Also, the idea that women can and should only target women with their writing, or that men’s points of views will only appeal to men, is limiting for everyone. I want to make it clear, in case it wasn’t, that I encourage new voices, whether they fall into what’s traditional or not. I’d love to see more men involved in erotica and erotic romance, in addition to the many talented ones already writing in the genres, giving their spin on male love and lust, not as a cash grab, but as a way of offering a different spin than what many of us may be used to.

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with knowing your main audience and catering to them. But I always want to leave the door open for the audience I might not expect, and I hope, in turn, readers leave themselves open to enjoy stories they might not expect either. I’m not saying “ignore my book title,” but I am saying that the subtitle in this case is a suggestion, not a mandate.

Fatal Attractions Chat W/ Charlotte Stein on Twitter #BFILoveFest

20 Nov
So crazy. So good.

So crazy. So good.

By Madeline Iva

Hey Kittens! This afternoon, on Twitter at 3:30pm, you’re invited to come chat with me, our very own G.G. Andrew and Charlotte Stein about our love of fatal attraction in movies and literature.

We’re a part of the British Film Institute’s salute to romance — #BFILoveFest.  If you want to register to get the list of programs for the entire weekend on Twitter and Facebook, go HERE.

We’ll talk about the movie Fatal Attraction, of course, but ALSO other movies and films that have great dangerous romance aspects.  Join us by going on Twitter and using the hashtag: #BFILoveFest.

Our chat starts at 3:30pm (Eastern Standard Time) which is 8:30 pm in London (be warned–the schedule lists London times, or Greenwich Mean Time GMT.)BFI LOVE FEST

Throw Me To The Wolves: A Quick Chat with Caryn Moya Block

19 Nov
Have a favorite wolf character? Do tell.

Have a favorite wolf character? Do tell.

by Madeline Iva

Hey puppies! Life is exciting this fall.  I’m drafting my latest WIP. waiting for edits  on Wicked Apprentice which comes out February 1st.  I’m also hosting a Twitter Chat in TWO DAYS (eep!) for #BFI — an online festival celebrating movies & romance. My chat is going to be all about fatal attractions/dangerous liaisons in film.  Whew!

So this week I just had time to grab a quick chat with Caryn Moya Block who was at the Washington Romance Writers luncheon for Bloggers & Readers back in October.  Caryn is such a sweet woman, as well as a very successful romance author.  She currently has three series, but by far her most popular is her wolf shifter series. 
The latest reboot of Teen Wolf. This ain't Michael J. Fox.

The latest reboot of Teen Wolf. This ain’t Michael J. Fox.

MADELINE IVA: you write paranormal stuff — can you recommend anything that you really loved reading in the paranormal realm that’s super steamy or erotic romance?

CARYN MOYA BLOCK: I just read Kate Douglas’s DARK WOLF from her new Spirit Wild Series. It is both steamy and erotic. I loved it!

MADELINE IVA:Why do you love it so?

CARYN MOYA BLOCK: It celebrates love and I think that is hugely important. The love between mates and between friends, no mater what the gender. I hope that one day the world will be able to do the same.

MADELINE IVA:What’s your fav paranormal movie?

CARYN MOYA BLOCK: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s’ Stone

MADELINE IVA: Any fav wolfie stuff to share?

Hello Mr. Wolf.

Hello Mr. Wolf.

CARYN MOYA BLOCK: I have been coveting one or two of these wolf statues.

MADELINE IVA:What’s the latest/greatest in the world of paranormal?

CARYN MOYA BLOCK:  *LOL*, I have seen bigfoot and yeti romance, which might be fun to write. Also Zombies seem to be huge, but decaying flesh is not romantic to me, so I don’t get it. The nice thing about Paranormal is that it includes everything out of the normal. That covers a lot of topics.

MADELINE IVA: Tell us about your latest book.

CARYN MOYA BLOCK: My Newest Release is HERE. SHADOW MATE: Book Eleven in the Siberian Volkov Pack Romance Series, as well as a Cross-Over Book to the Shadow Walker Tribe Romance.

Sergei Sokolov, Siberian Lycan, is surprised when the mating bond snaps into place and connects him to a woman being attacked in Moscow. Knowing he may lose his destined mate sends him running to rescue her.

Lindy Quiet Thunder, Shadow Walker, is investigating strange lapses of lost time in a team of Marines. While taking the unit to Moscow for a little R&R, Lindy is attacked. As she loses consciousness her mind connects to her mate. Who is behind the attack and will her mate find her in time?


Thanks so much for the chat, Caryn! :) That’s all for now, puppies! Follow us at Lady Smut where we’ll dress like little red riding hood and howl at the moon.

Descending Into Twerking Hell

18 Nov

By Elizabeth Shore

I have a confession.

I recently tried learning to twerk.

And failed miserably.

Here’s the thing. Before you start wondering whether your intrepid Lady Smut writer has lost her ever-lovin’ marbles, let me set the scene. First, it’s important to know that I’m not a fan of exercising. I do it, grudgingly, not because I like it or it’s fun or I get the “runner’s high” that so many rave about (frankly, I still doubt its existence). I do it because we all know it’s good for you and makes you feel good (after finishing, mind you). And, well, you’re just supposed to exercise. It’s a painful but necessary fact of life. Like a lip wax. But it’s such a draaaag! I kick and scream my way through every workout. So I had this idea, see? Where I thought I could make exercising fun? Which is how I landed on twerking.

Twerking is actually quite good exercise for your core. It makes your stomach strong. And probably flat, if you do it enough. And, well, Miley Cyrus can do it, so how hard can it be? Buoyed by this thought, I donned my exercise clothes, fired up YouTube, and found Keaira LaShae, who promised in her video to teach me how to twerk, booty pop and body roll.

(Interesting side note: although booty popping seems to be fairly similar to twerking, purists argue that twerking actually includes (or even requires) that the glutes move independently of one another. Which, frankly, looks a little freak of nature-ish to me. But I digress.)

So. OK. I watch the video, then hit play to re-watch, this time with me attempting to pop my booty right along with Keaira. It’s then that I’m smacked in the gut with a sad, harsh reality. Twerking is hard. First of all, my hips don’t seem physiologically able to move the way they’re supposed to. I could get them to go forward OK, but the backward thrusting motion went nowhere fast. My hips felt as brittle and stubborn as an old retired mule. And when I did manage to coax them into something at least suggesting a booty pop (in truth, more like a flail than a pop), my lower back let forth a wail of protest. Egad!

I decided I needed to take a step back and start with the fundamentals. In the video, Ms. LaShae demonstrates something called a hip tick. This, for unknown reasons, was something I could get a handle on. Progress! However, when she morphed the tick into one continuous motion (hip roll, people), this again became more complicated. I just cannot swivel my hips that quickly. It’s as if my ball and joint sockets are in serious need of some WD40. *sigh*

I have no aspirations to go clubbing anytime soon. As in never. But even if I did, as a female of the caucasion persuasion, I’d be under no peer pressure to start shaking my booty, neither tickin’ nor poppin’ nor twerkin’, oh my! But still. That’s not the point. It was exceedingly frustrating that I actually couldn’t do it. Suddenly I felt old. Used up. Washed out. Like a down-and-out former pro basketballer who drools more than dribbles. I felt as if I should be able to conquer this twerking business but my booty business was having none of it. It was humiliating, I tell ya. Humiliating.

Still, there’s a silver lining in all of this. I can’t twerk, so I don’t have to twerk. No more being painfully humbled by Ms. LaShae’s expert twerking ability, and no more getting the stink eye from my cats when I attempt that which I clearly should not.

Maybe I should consider pole dancing.







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