Marbles in Your Panties And Harry Potter with Multi Award-Winning Author Cecilia Tan

4 Sep

by Elizabeth SaFleur

The list of kudos, awards and testimonials for writer, editor and activist CECILIA TAN, if listed here, would break this blog. She has been inducted into the Saints & Sinners Hall of Fame for GLBT Writers, won a coveted RT Reviewers Choice Award in Erotic Romance, the Maggie Award for Excellence, and TAN herself was awarded the RT Career Achievement Award in Erotic Fiction and the RT Pioneer Award in Genre Fiction for Erotica at the last RT Booklovers Convention.

That’s the short list.

CECILIA gives us imaginative, heart-felt, well-crafted stories that’ll melt you like a latex body suit. After reading Slow Surrender, I have never looked at marbles the same way. If I ever re-read the Harry Potter series, I’d likely say the same about Harry after the Magic University series. (All good.)

Oh, and in addition to writing many books, she is founder and editor of Circlet Press.

“Cecilia Tan is simply one of the most important writers, editors, and innovators in contemporary American erotic literature.” ~Susie Bright

She has a passion for baseball (and has written several baseball nonfiction books) and TaeKwon Do and plays several musical instruments. She once was a professional ski instructor and taught mime and Spanish to elementary school kids.

Who else feels like an underachiever right now? <<Raising hand>>

But CECILIA also is really nice and approachable in person. She was the keynote speaker at the BDSM Writers Con two weeks ago, where her table at the book fair never went unvisited by admiring fans.

(My favorite quote from one of her many presentations at the Con: In “real” dominant-submissive life, “subs will endanger themselves to please their tops. Tops have to accept this irrationality about bottoms. Submissives fear disappointing their Dominants more than bodily harm.” For a writer that provides all kinds of fodder.)

Speaking of ideas and wisdom . . . CECILIA stops by today and shares with us what’s next, writing-wise, and how she got started — among many other insider anecdotes, such as how Slow Surrender was born. An amazing story.

Welcome, Cecilia! Thanks for talking with us at LadySmut. First, of all the writing genres you could write, why erotic romance?

Erotica and sexuality have always been my number one topics to write about, going all the way back into my childhood writing days. I always knew I was going to be a writer. I thought when I was growing up that I was going to be a science fiction writer, but when I started publishing professionally in the early 1990s it was clear the place where I really found my “voice” and the stories I was burning to write were erotic science fiction and fantasy. Erotica is still my main theme, whether it’s wearing the label of romance or urban fantasy or women’s fiction.

You write magical realism, fan fiction, science fiction, contemporary and more. That’s quite a mix! I might be making this up, but I sense a theme of “out of the ordinary.” Would that be an appropriate way to characterize your work? 

And cyberpunk and LGBT and high fantasy… et cetera. The main thing is all of them are erotic or exploring sexuality and sex in some way.

You liken writing Fan Fiction as “a professional ballet dancer going out to a disco or dance club.” Have you had any pushback from fans of the Harry Potter series when you published your Magic University series?

Not that I’ve heard. I’m deeply embedded in Harry Potter fandom, both online and in real life through Harry Potter conventions and regional meetup groups, and the reaction has been universally positive. Potter fandom is incredibly accepting of alternative sexuality and supportive of creativity, as you might expect from a book series that has tolerance and diversity as a main theme. (The final book in the series comes out next week–September 15!)

magic-u-forthcoming-banner

In your award-winning Struck by Lightning series, you have one very reluctant rock star/artist who begins an unconventional relationship with the heroine, a grad student/waitress. How did the series idea come about? Was there an “inciting incident” (I’m picturing you at a rock concert!) where the story just came to you?

The “inciting incident” was that my agent called me on the day that 50 Shades of Grey was on the front page of the New York Times. That was a Friday. She said, “Because of this, on Monday, my phone is going to ring off the hook because every editor in New York who has been telling me for 15 years ‘Cecilia Tan is too kinky for us,’ is going to call and say ‘get me Cecilia Tan right now.'” So she advised me to cook up a proposal over the weekend. I cleared my schedule, sat down with my laptop, and wrote the entire first two chapters–the meeting in the bar, the game with the marble down her panties, the walk down the Manhattan street while he watches from the limo–pretty much all in one day. I simply started with a blank page, heard Karina’s voice in my head, threw a mystery man at her, and we were off to the races! My agent was right: that book launched a three-book series at Hachette/Forever.

1578983991n6AN28TPL3ebfd6ba3ac3dc5f15b4e68b1945d282How does a book start for you?

That’s pretty much my process described above. “Hey, Cecilia, write something!” “Okay.” I sit down with a blank page and everything that has been stored up coalesces into fiction. For the big publishers I do have to write an outline, but often I write very very sketchy outlines because I really do not know what is going to happen until it does. I don’t know the backstory of the characters, I don’t know their quirks, none of that. I know there are writers who make out very detailed character histories, and have photos of actors who look like them, and know what flavor of ice cream they like and what brand of car they drive and all that. That would absolutely bore me to tears and pretty much kill any interest I might have had in getting to know that character “in person.” In my MFA program they called what I do “writing for discovery.” In the romance writing world they call me a “pantser,” i.e. I fly by the seat of my pants. Discovering the story locked in my subconscious can only happen through writing the actual story. if I dig it out any other way, it comes up broken and flat and no fun to write. Writing is a joy for me.

I understand your consult Tarot cards when writing. What a fascinating way to access choices, plots and decisions. Do you use the Tarot cards for all your writing? How has it helped you?

I mostly used Tarot cards when writing the Magic University books, where the magic of the Tarot is a big part of the plot and a recurring motif. But if I get stuck on a character or a plot point, they’re useful All the Tarot do, like a Rorschach test, is force you to look at what’s inside your subconscious. That’s what writing is: revealing the story in your subconscious to your conscious mind. So it’s just one more tool for doing that.

What is your definition of erotic romance versus steamy romance?

Is there such a thing? I’ll confess I’ve never seen the label “steamy romance” applied to a book before. Erotic romance, to me, means a romance where the romantic bond between the characters is built up throughout the novel through sexual interaction. Thus a romance that has some graphic sex scenes but only at the very end might not count as “erotic romance” to me. I find romances where the characters fall madly in love before they’ve ever had sex to be unbelievable, though. I just can’t suspend my disbelief that much. That’s so opposite to my personal experiences of love, I can’t relate.

Do you have a favorite writing “moment?” 

My favorite writing moment was when I was writing the first Magic University book, The Siren and the Sword. Like the Potter books there is a mystery in each volume, plus an overarching plot that carries from book to book. As I was writing the big climax scene where our hero catches the culprit I have him holding hands in a group dance with two characters. One was supposed to be the culprit and the other an innocent bystander. WAIT, I thought, what if…the innocent bystander was the culprit all along? I ran with it and finished writing the book with that as the culprit and then I went back to rewrite, thinking well, now I have to put in all the clues that point to this new change I made. Right? Wrong. All the clues were already in there. My subconscious knew perfectly well who the culprit was, but just didn’t see fit to reveal it to ME until I actually wrote it. This is why I have learned to trust my subconscious and trust the “write for discovery” process.

What is next for you, writing wise? 

Well, for those who love rock stars, there’s more in store. Not only is my gay series Daron’s Guitar Chronicles continuing–we just released book eight in that series and book nine will be coming in November–I’m writing a followup to Struck by Lightning for Hachette that combines BDSM and rock stars again, too! The new series is called Secrets of a Rock Star, and the first book, TAKING THE LEAD, will be out in January. (Amazon already has it up for pre-order!)

download

Anything exciting you right now?

What’s exciting me is that now that the world is finally ready to read my sexy, sexy books, I get to be the rock star! Well, sort of. I get to travel the world and wear fabulous outfits from time to time and meet people and inspire their erotic fantasies (through my books). That’s as close to being a rock star as I’m ever going to get!

Thanks for stopping by, Cecilia. Best of luck with Taking the Lead. We look forward to reading what you come up with next!

Hook yourself up with some CECILIA TAN books:

The Siren and the Sword (Book one of the Magic University series)
Slow Surrender  (Book one of the Struck by Lightning series)
Preorder for Taking the Lead

Connect, Follow, Like, Share and Socialize with CECILIA TAN:

Facebook   Twitter   Instagram  tumblr   Google+  Pinterest  Goodreads  Web site  Amazon author page

The Hawt Men From U.N.C.L.E.

3 Sep
Lookin' good, Henry.

Lookin’ good, Henry.

by Madeline Iva

Is Henry Cavill the most beautiful man on the face of this planet? Probably.* I’ve talked about him before, and goggled over him in Superman, but this time Henry is in THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.** a movie I shelled out the big bucks to see while it’s still in the movie theaters, cause in the previews, damn, he looked hot.

I’m happy to say the movie *is* as fun and stylish as it looked.   Although I was a little surprised—not by Henry–though he totally delivers on stylish eat-me-with-a-spoon charm. No, I was surprised by Armie Hammer.  He seriously gives Henry a run for his money.

How many fake crows were abused in the making of this movie?

How many fake crows were abused in the making of this movie?

I’ve seen Armie Hammer in interviews and just lurv his deep voice*** but this was the first time I’ve seen him in a movie role. Did you watch The Lone Ranger? Neither did I. Let’s not discuss why, but I’m looking at you and that dead bird on your head, Johnnie Depp.

DH and I discussed the name Armie –which I thought was Arnie, but no, it’s not. It’s Armie which is short for Armand. As in Armand Hammer – yes, as in THAT Armand Hammer – who was a big deal businessman from long ago, and is Armie’s grandfather**** but is not the baking soda. Glad we got that cleared up.

So, during the previews it was all “Get that Lone Ranger guy out of the way, I’m trying to look at Henry.” While watching the movie, however, a few thoughts were rolling around in my head at the same time.  Yes, the movie is enjoyable.  Henry is amusing. Guy Richie is doing for Henry Cavill what Hitchcock did for Cary Grant, bringing out his polished gorgeous perfection in a deliciously droll package that will make women all across this great nation purr.  Yet as we got deeper into the movie, they brought out Armie Hammer’s role a little more.  That’s when I started noticing him a LOT.

He has very nice hands as you can see below. The rest of him isn’t so bad either. He’s very tall. He makes Henry–at 6’ 1”–seem short, he’s that tall.

The brooding Russian plays chess while the girl tries to get his attention with her mad dance moves.

The brooding Russian plays chess while the girl tries to get his attention with her mad dance moves.

Armie is playing a Russian. Is he believable as a Russian? No. Not particularly. Does it matter? No, not particularly.

In fact the movie is a bit meta, and one of the quirky things about it is that ever actor in this film is playing a nationality they’re not. Henry is British but he’s playing an American (He took over the role from Tom Cruise).  He has a very nice accent, but like most Brits, it’s overdone. He sounds like he studied some American 50’s TV episode for decades, but hey, this is a cold war period film, so it kinda works. The leading actress, Alicia Vikander, is Swedish.  Yet in the film she is playing East-German.  She’s very cute and adds a lot to the movie, (seriously, she’s one to watch, and can act circles around all the men) but her accent is a mix of British, German, and American. Meanwhile, the villainess is an Aussie playing an Italian. (And at 6′ 2″ is also making Henry look short. Poor Henry). I think Hugh Grant is the only one in the entire film who’s actually a Brit playing British. Maybe that’s why he looks so chuffed.

Don’t want to use spoilers, here, but I think Armie has the emotional hook for the film.  He plays a wound up Russian with daddy issues in a fake engagement with a mechanic-turned-spy-bait named Gaby. Is the engagement as fake as it’s supposed to be? See, that’s what starts to hook us into him, as he tries to find an emotional grip. In these scenes he’s really good at connecting with his eyes.  So maybe that’s why I found him a bit more compelling than Henry. Though I didn’t like the ‘mad violence’ motif they used for Armie’s character.  Was that in the original? Dunno. I wasn’t born yet when the original came out, and haven’t checked it out.  Friends say it’s only meh.

Nice hands, uh, Ilya.

Nice hands, uh, Ilya.

Armie or Henry? Henry or Armie? Or hey, why not both? Throughout this movie you just want to be the filling in an Armie-Henry sandwich, and that’s what makes it such a delight. ; >

Though for you m/m fans out there, one could easily imagine an Armie-Henry pairing where you know, you just get to watch, because in true Guy Richie’s style there is plenty of queer baiting going on here.

No, lean over more. More! That's it.

No, lean over more. More! That’s it.

Obviously there are supposed to be more Man From U.N.C.L.E. films in the future. Guy Richie is working it with his film style.With the Sherlock films, he was a little too in love with his own talents and killed the pacing. He started off with British gansta films, and this light caper film is close enough to that form to be in his comfort zone. Now he’s upping his game, and with a few nods to Tarrantino, keeps us plugging right along so that at the very end of the film I wasn’t  sure if there was going to be another act.  If there was, I wouldn’t have minded. Is that a recommendation? I think it is.

Here’s another rec: follow us at Lady Smut, where we’ll bring you much hotness at matinee prices.

Whew! I culled a lot of digressions from this blog post–want to read more? Here they are.

* Is Henry the most beautiful man on earth? I used to think Song Seung-heon from AUTUMN IN MY HEART, a Korean Drama, was the most beautiful man on the planet, but now I am willing to let Henry share the title with him.

Song Seung-heon is crazy beautiful. He and Henry can share the crown.

Song Seung-heon is crazy beautiful. He and Henry can share the crown.

**DH saw the movie with me and said Matt Bomer must be like: Hey! That was my role. While Henry plays a well dressed thief forced to work for the government in THE MAN FROM UNCLE – Bomer had a very VERY similar role in the television show WHITE COLLAR. When pressed by DH, I will admit that there is some physical similarity between the two actors. However, I feel they are miles apart in terms of chemistry. DH liked Matt Bomer in his TV show, but I’ve never cared for him, and was not at all surprised when he came out of the Hollywood closet. (Good for you, Matt.) Except for thinking “damn, that man can wear a sarong like nobody’s bizness” in Magic Mike XXL, he has never done it for me. (Though I know some would disagree. *cough* Kiersten *cough*).

He can rock a sarong, that Matt Bomer.

He can rock a sarong, that Matt Bomer.

***John Krasinski, who also is mega-tall and has a wonderfully soothing low voice must be hating Armie Hammer, thinking, “Hey, that was my role,” because they have a very similar warm, tall man charisma. Alas, I think Armie’s a better actor than John. Sorry, John. You know I still love you.

BTW, are you wondering what John’s been doing since The Office ended? Cause he kinda fell off the face of the earth. Welp, his much more successful British wife had a baby, and he seemed like he ate his way through the pregnancy while doing a ton of voice over work. Other than being so pleased with himself about the lip sync battles he did with Jimmie Fallon that he produced a show called Lip Sync Battle, (which has done quite well,) John hasn’t been acting much–if you can call lip syncing acting.  However, he is in a Michael Bay war movie called 13 HOURS. I saw a preview for it, and he does not speak one line.  : (13hours-1024x576

So, I don’t think war movies are going to be his thing, though I get the feeling he likes to rock the bushy beard. Poor John.

****Turns out Armie’s also from a super Christian background. Does that help, does it hurt? Dunno. I think at heart he’s a large, sweet guy.  Ring ring! Hello? Oh, Armie, that was the rom-coms.  They’re calling for you.

How I Drool Over Your Tattoo

2 Sep

By Elizabeth Shore

Remember those 80s romance novel covers? Of COURSE you do. Bare chested, long-haired, totally hot, ripped guys, arms wrapped possessively around the doe-eyed adoring heroine. To wit:

Enchanted Paradise Master of Desire cover

 

 

Then in the 90s there was some drastic backpeddling, with dully innocuous covers which were neitherParadise tantalizing nor told much about the content within becoming common fare. Check out Judith McNaught’s Paradise, for example. Pearls and petals don’t tell you much, but readers also didn’t feel the burn of shame by reading these books in public as some had with the bare-chested Fabio covers screaming ROMANCE NOVEL! SEXY STUFF WITHIN!

So now we’re in the … two-thousand teens? Is that what how we’re referring to the present time? In any case, jumping to present day, we’ve got ereaders, people. Yea! Now we can really really disguise whatever we’re reading. And with this newfound freedom, I see the covers reverting back to those of yesteryear – meaning the 80s – but with a significant difference. For one thing, we’re not always getting a woman on the cover standing aside our requisite stud. No siree. We’re keeping him all to ourselves. There are lots and lots and lots of covers with just a smokin’ hot guy posing solo without any pesky woman draped all over him. And there’s something else that stands out on many of today’s covers:  the male cover models are frequently tattooed. Oooh my. Is it hot in here?

I’ll say straight up – I’m a huge fan of tattoos. There’s something so sexy about them. Despite the fact that even cool grannies are sporting ink these days, there remains a bad boy element to a guy with tats. Like maybe he’s done some time. Or belongs to a motorcycle gang. I also like the permanence to them. It’s a commitment to get a tattoo, because unless you want to sit through painful electrolysis to get it removed, that tat’s staying put. It’s also not for the faint hearted. Having a couple of them myself, I can say with authority that getting a tattoo hurts, at least some of the time and in certain places on the bod. But yet … but yet. When I see a guy sporting tattoos, my interest meter definitely amps.

There’s a whole thing with tattoos in Kit Rocha’s dystopian erotic romance Beyond series. Our own Kiersten Hallie Krum, Madeline Iva, and I are all fans of the series (check out Kiersten’s blog on it here, and Madeline’s here), and tattooing is featured in it. Once someone is finally allowed into the main clan of the series and becomes a part of it, they “take ink,” and get tattooed to show their permanent allegiance. I like that. I also like that tattoos tell a story about the wearer. Not to say there aren’t people who just walk into a tattoo shop and decide to get a butterfly slapped on their ankle with no real affinity for butterflies other than they’re pretty. But more often than not the tattoo is chosen carefully and has meaning behind it. Those with tattoos frequently come up with the idea on their own and the artist’s design stems from that idea. So learning about why someone has a particular tattoo, why something is so meaningful to them that they made the decision to immortalize it on their bodies, is interesting, fascinating, and definitely downright sexy.

So, sexies, I leave you with tattooed heros to get you through your day. You’re welcome. :-)

Shadowing Me Rock With Me Denying the Bad Boy Ink Lust Fighting Destiny

Incandescent

Fear the Walking Dead: Is This the Way the World Ends?

1 Sep
I know, Alicia. I'm bored, too.

I know, Alicia. I’m bored, too.

By Alexa Day

I’ve spent two weeks trying to figure out why I can’t get into Fear the Walking Dead.

I mean, I love the original TWD all to pieces. I’ve hung up on people when their phone calls threaten to overlap with those precious first few minutes of the show. I treasure my Twitter time with the rest of the viewership. My iPod is jammed with music from the show and the promos.

I worship Richonne and I do it proudly.

TWD has moved me (“It’s for you”), shocked me (“Look at the flowers”), cracked me up (“Motherdick“), and generally filled me with hope for the future of television.

So I really wanted to enjoy Fear the Walking Dead. For one thing, it was going to get me through the long, long summer hiatus until Season Six of TWD starts in October.

Looks like it’s going to be a long six weeks.

On the bright side, I’ve figured out what the trouble is. I guess there are going to be spoilers, if that matters to you.

In theory, Fear the Walking Dead should work the way Titanic worked.

I know. Bear with me.

We all went to see Titanic despite the fact that we know how the story ends. Right? I think we did that for two reasons. Either we wanted to see what James Cameron did with such a large-scale disaster from an artistic perspective, or we wondered what would become of the characters we’d come to care about. Or both. Both is another option.

Fear TWD should have similar appeal. We already know that Fear TWD‘s civil unrest and confusion will end with the zombie apocalypse. I know I started watching in the hope that the folks who brought us TWD would bring the same artistic firepower to the beginning of the end. But I also know that the only way to keep folks watching is to give us characters we care about.

Sadly, Fear TWD is falling short on both counts.

I was under the impression that Fear TWD would show us how the apocalypse started, but it’s pretty clear that the infection has taken a pretty solid hold of society before the first episode starts. We are now two episodes in, and we still don’t know what actually caused the zombie apocalypse. (My guess, though, is something to do with the flu shot.) We have no Patient Zero. We just have fewer zombies. If you spend any time on Twitter during TWD, you know that fewer zombies is not the way to hook fans.

The larger problem, though, is these characters.

TWD works so brilliantly because it’s a story about the sort of people who would never have met each other in the pre-apocalypse, each of whom has become a completely different sort of person in the aftermath of destruction. Add in the larger questions of how far people will go when faced with the collapse of their civilization. What you get is something deep and powerful — characters asking themselves and each other who they were and who they are with none of the distracting nonsense of 21st century society.

And then, of course, we get plenty of zombie-related violence on top of that. You know, just to keep things moving.

Fear TWD has given us a blended family drama. That’s right. We’re going to face the zombie apocalypse with teen angst, angry exes, and a harried mom trying to hold it all together. If someone made TWD into a Lifetime movie, this would be the result. Two hours of “Stop it! Don’t you say that to him! Because I’m your mother! Get down from there! Don’t touch him! That’s not what the custody agreement says! He’s not answering my phone calls! Just because! I hate you! You promised!”

It’s enough to make a person cheer for zombies. Yes, they are relentless undead killing machines who will cheerfully tear you into bite-sized pieces with their hands before cramming you into their decaying gullets. But they aren’t whiny, pouty bundles of high-voltage family resentment.

The worst part is that better choices are available.

During Sunday’s episode, two of our super-troubled teens are trapped indoors (Nick is going through withdrawal and his sister Alicia is in the role of Responsible Sibling/Caretaker). A moment before, we hear that the family across the street has planned a birthday party for a nine-year-old girl. We know that the little girl’s parents don’t expect anyone to come because everyone seems to be sick lately. We also know that another neighbor is looking very unwell.

What happens at the party? We don’t know.

How long did that unwell neighbor hold out before this mystery illness finally finished him? We don’t know.

How did he get into the house across the street? We don’t know.

Did the birthday girl make it? We don’t know.

Here’s what we got instead. “I don’t care! You let Mom do it! I’m going anyway! I hate you! We all know what you need!” We get to spend this part of the episode watching Nick sweat, vomit, and complain his way through withdrawal instead of actually watching the genesis of the zombie apocalypse. His sister isn’t even interested; why should the rest of us be?

Fear the walking dead? We haven’t really seen the walking dead. We did get to see a genuine L.A. police riot, but (forgive my cynicism) haven’t we kind of seen those before?

Anyway, if the next episode isn’t much more engaging, I’m going to have to find another way to wait out the summer hiatus. I didn’t sign on for a weekly dose of Anxious Moms Yelling and the Teens Who Love to Hate Them. I came to see the world shuffle slowly to a stop.

Is anyone else barely hanging on to Fear TWD at this point? Join the rant in the comments.

And follow Lady Smut for all the stuff and thangs.

Fire Me Up: A Review

31 Aug deacons emblem enlarged

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

Fire Me Up by Rachael Johns is the second book in Loveswept’s The Deacons of Bourbon Street MC erotic romance series featuring authors Megan Crane, Rachael Johns, Jackie Ashenden, and Maisey Yates.

Travis “Cash” Sinclair values only two things from his days with the Deacons of Bourbon Street: his prized Harley Davidson and the man who gave it to him. But now Priest Lombard is gone, and Cash has inherited the Deacons’ clubhouse—not to mentions its unexpected tenant. She’s exactly the type of woman he tries to avoid: all incense and art, with a sharp tongue that promises trouble. So why does Cash want to push aside those flowing skirts and lose himself between her legs?
 
Billie Taylor fled a bad marriage to start a new life among the grit and glamour of the French Quarter. She refuses to let another man distract her from her dreams, especially an outlaw biker with nothing to offer except hot sex and an eviction notice. Cash is dangerous, with an untamed streak he tries desperately to conceal. He drives Billie wild, sending her too close to the edge for her own good. And she won’t fall under his spell—or into his bed—without a fight.

Fire Me Up

Click image to buy.

Cash is the first of the once-exiled Deacons to not want to be back in New Orleans. Called back by Ajax in Make You Burn, he only plans to stay long enough to honor his dead MC president, Priest, and then scoot right back to his life in Florida as a security analyst. His plans go awry when Priest’s will names him as one of four heirs. Now Cash is stuck in New Orleans indefinitely until the inherited properties can be sold, including the offensive bohemian art gallery that now lives in what was once the Deacons’ prized clubhouse.

Billie barely survived an abusive, domineering ex-husband. Her art gallery in New Orleans is her second chance: a new life for a new Billie. Now that sanctuary is threatened by Cash’s plans, especially after he decides to move back into the former clubhouse and be her roommate for as long as he’s there. Billie doesn’t like feeling powerless again but increasingly finds it difficult to set boundaries with Cash when the longer he’s there, the more she wants for him to stay.

Cash and Billie are sharp contrast to the high-octane Ajax and Sophie who debuted the Deacons of Bourbon Street in Make You Burn, though they are no less intense. Billie is the first outsider to this MC world and it’s not an easy adaptation for her, especially given the abuses of her former marriage. She’s afraid to object for fear of pushing Cash and the Deacons to a decision she doesn’t want, but can’t give up her gallery, her home, without a fight. Cash is dealing with some serious emo issues and fighting it every step of the way. Cash is pretty much pissed at everyone and his trust issues are a mile wide–which makes them a few yards shorter than Billie’s. He made a life away from the Deacon’s out of necessity, one he’s come to value quite a bit, but the old pull of what was once the most important thing in his life, the club, once again has its claws in him. His relationship with Billie makes him confront his past too and particularly the deed (and the person) that set him on the path to the Deacons in the first place. Billie is sweet and has a slow burn to find her feet but with a great payoff. She’s necessary too, a needed palliative to all the MC attitude swinging going on around her. Cash’s presence and the uncertainty that the changes happening in the Deacons MC brings to her door shakes up the comfort zone she’s been hiding in since arriving from Australia. The sexual tension between her and Cash and the shades of similar and different between him and her ex force Billie to figure out who she wants to be in this new life of hers and just what she does, or doesn’t, need from the man who’s dramatically become a focus in it.

Fire Me Up is available on September 1st. Click on the cover image above to buy. Check out the Lady Smut review of Make You Burn and see out The Deacons of Bourbon Street series began. And be sure to listen in to the podcast interview with all four Bitches of Bourbon Street, authors Megan Crane, Rachael Johns, Jackie Ashenden, and Maisey Yates.

Follow Lady Smut. We’ll keep you fired up.

 

Spent from Blushing, Ready for Tuesday!

30 Aug
Nothing refreshes like a long weekend of handling implements. *sigh*

Nothing refreshes like a long weekend of handling implements. *sigh*

By Alexa Day

I have been in the nation’s capital this weekend, where I presented a workshop on Writer’s Self-Confidence at the Passionate Pen conference, hosted by Blushing Books. What a party! Is there anything better than hanging out with the sort of folks who discuss the Oxford comma, the mysteries of Amazon and its algorithms, and the relative merits of floggers and canes?

I can’t think of anything. Not just now.

While I’m recovering from my trip, why don’t you enjoy clicking through some of my favorite posts from the last few months? Don’t worry. I’ll be back to provoke your thoughts in just two short days — I will be sliding over onto Tuesday starting this very week!

See you there.

In the dust-up over “female Viagra,” I think we lost sight of the “male Pill.”

I really hope the whole dadbod thing is over by now.

How do *you* feel about your Number?

And I think I’m still a little put out about this guy who was outed.

Get to clicking! And follow LadySmut. We know how to party around here.

Sexy Saturday Round Up

29 Aug

SSRUHey beach bunnies!

Happy Saturday — anyone out there wiggling your toes in the hot sand? If you’re trapped inside with the A/C instead, here are the Lady Smut authors with some sexy, smexy, interesting links for you to peruse at your leisure.

From Madeline:

Is it ever okay to ASK FOR IT? Romance for Feminists blog looks at Lilah Pace’s rape fantasy novel.

Boys Tell All at WeWomen: What they think of women who put out on the first date.

Famous singer dedicates love song to her vibrator.  Really.

Bitch magazine posted a hilarious comic about a couple’s first time at a swinger’s party.

NPR hops on the romance bandwagon w/ 100 Swoon worthy Summer Romances–including erotic romance!

 

LAWYER UP: I Fought The Law n Then We Had Kinky Sex

28 Aug
You know you want it. Click to buy!

You know you want it. Click to buy!

by Madeline Iva

What are you doing this weekend?  I think I might be rolling around with a juicy little book called LAWYER UP by Kate Allure.  Three stories, three steamy erotic romance encounters with smart men in suits.

I don’t know about you, but there’s just something about a guy in a tie that gets me all hot n bothered.

Love the cover, love the reviews that it got–going to see if Kate will stop by the blog some time.

Meanwhile, buy it kittens!

“This trio of hot and steamy tales is escapism of the richest, most decadent variety.”-RT Book Reviews

“Readers will cheer on these strong women as they take the initiative, seeking (and finding) both sexual satisfaction and emotional fulfillment.”-Publisher’s Weekly

50’s Spankity-Spank-Spank: Guest Post by Cara Bristol

27 Aug

Season4-betty-peggy-joanby Cara Bristol

“Educating His Bride” from CORRECTING THE COEDS

Never much interested in her studies, Margaret Atwater attends college hoping to graduate with an Mrs. degree instead of a bachelor’s. When she catches the eye of English Professor Henry Thurston, she’s thrilled to marry him, drop out of school, and begin a new life as a married woman and faculty wife. However, Henry is a kinky man who has much to teach his eager young bride—in and out of the bedroom. As Mrs. Henry Thurston, Margaret’s education has just begun.

When I set out to write an erotic spanking romance set on a college campus in the 1950s, I wanted it to be historically accurate. I didn’t want to slap a poodle skirt and a pair of saddle shoes on my heroine and then put her in an otherwise modern scenario. I wanted the story to be true to the values and culture of the time.

Jayne-MansfieldBut how do you write a kinky sex story set in a decade that epitomized wholesomeness? The 1950s seems as clean-cut as a starched white shirt. Even “I Love Lucy” would have you believe married couples slept in separate beds. The emphasis was on family and conformity. Girls were not supposed to have sex before marriage and a girl who did quickly earned herself a bad reputation as a “loose” or “fast” woman. This was the time before birth control pills (the first oral contraceptive wasn’t approved in the US until 1960), so with sex came the problem of unwanted pregnancy.

Couples in the US married at a younger age than at any other time in US history. In 1950 and 1960, the average age of first marriage was 20.3 years for women and 22.8 years for men, compared to 2010 when it was 26.1 for women and 28.2 for men, or 1890 when it was 22.0 for women and 26.1 for men. But sex, it was a happenin’. What people professed to do, and what they actually did behind closed doors were two vastly different things.

For instance, the term “sex symbol” came into usage in the 1950s, the decade that produced sexual icons Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield, Brigitte Bardot, Raquel Welch, and Elvis “the Pelvis” Presley. Founded by Hugh Hefner, Playboy magazine debuted in 1953 with Marilyn Monroe as its first nude centerfold.

Biologist and sexologist Alfred Kinsey got people “all shook up” with his reports Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) and Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1953), which discussed taboo subjects like homosexuality and BDSM. According to Kinsey’s reports, heterosexuality was not as “exclusive” as people believed it was.

That great scene in Masters of Sex where he has to spank her--if only for the sake of science.

That great scene in Masters of Sex where he has to spank her–if only for the sake of science.

While Kinsey relied on surveys and self-reports for his data, William Masters and Virginia Johnson observed people having sex in their studies, which began in 1957. In the laboratory, they watched couples having sexual intercourse and masturbating, their research debunking some commonly accepted “facts” about female sexuality and revolutionizing sex therapy.

Against this backdrop, I wrote my story, “Educating His Bride” for CORRECTING THE COEDS a spanking romance collection, which includes stories by Sue Lyndon, Celeste Jones, and Renee Rose. This story is about a young woman’s blossoming sexuality and introduction to kink under the tutelage of her much more experienced husband. It’s hot, erotic, kinky—and as historically accurate as I could make it. ;>

Multi-published, Cara Bristol is the author of more than 20 erotic romance titles. She writes spanking romance, contemporary romance, paranormal, and science fiction romance. No matter what the subgenre, one thing remains constant: her emphasis on character-driven seriously hot erotic stories with sizzling chemistry between the hero and heroine.Correcting the Coeds - Final Medium 600X900

Buy Cara’s latest work, CORRECTING THE COEDS, a 1950s spanking romance collection here:

Click on her name to go to her website — Cara Bristol

Look for her book coming Sept. 22 – STRANDED WITH THE CYBORG, a science fiction romance.
Get notified when this books releases! Sign up for Cara’s New Release Newsletter

Those Cheatin’ Hearts and the Ashley Madison Hack Attack

26 Aug

Young Beautiful Blonde Woman Gesturing for Quiet or Shushing

By Elizabeth Shore

It’s been a victorious few weeks for those in the public shaming biz. Ever since extramarital affairs hookup site AshleyMadison.com was breached by hackers, we’ve seen an outpouring of articles, news feeds, and blogs about how many people had signed up on the site (numbers range anywhere from 32 to 40 million) and how many prominent or well-known folks are among those numbers. Government employees, some with sensitive congressional jobs, have been ID’d. And reality TV star Josh Duggar, upon being outed, has hung his head in shame for being, in his words, “the biggest hypocrite ever.

We’re good with this. Right? They were cheaters, after all. Lowest of the low. They violated marital vows and the trust of those to whom they’d supposedly commited unwavering fidelity. Good thing well-meaning hackers were able to bust into the site and expose those loathesome creatures so that the rest of us pillars of moral rectitude can point fingers of shame. And having the world connected on the net makes it so easy. It’s virtual stocks and pillories to make certain those cheaters are properly called out. If only we could spit on them and throw rotten vegetables in their faces for good measure.

To be clear, I don’t condone cheating. Committing to fidelity is just that – a commitment. A vow that you’re going to be loyal to one person and not go running around having sex on the sly with lots of others (or even one other). If you make the promise of fidelity to someone, you darn well ought to keep it. But here’s where I struggle with the Ashley Madison story. Breaking your commitment is a bad thing. It’s painful, it’s wrong, and you shouldn’t do it. But it’s not illegal. Hacking into a computer site and stealing protected data is. Yet for all the stories I’ve read about this, the focus is almost exclusively on the people registered on the site and not at all on the hackers who exposed them.

When hackers breached the Target Corp’s site back in 2013 and obtained the data from some 40 million credit cards, people were in an uproar. Their personal information, such as email addresses and phone numbers, were compromised. Target ended up paying out $10 million to settle a class action lawsuit by people upset over the data breach. The same is true in the Ashley Madison situation. But rather than hearing public outcry over the hackers who illegally broke into the site and compromised subscribers’ data – or outcry over Ashley Madison not keeping their damn data more secure! –  the condemnation has been over the subscribers themselves. They’re the ones receiving the criticism, the shaming, the virtual vegetables in the face. How we’ve been able to out these people seems not to matter, the focus is solely on what they’ve done. It’s a classic example of the ends justifying the means.

I have to admit, I find this unsettling. The hackers who went after Ashley Madison weren’t doing it to obtain financial data, as in the Target breach, but rather solely because they wanted to expose activity over which they objected. If a bunch of people broke into a bookstore, stole every last book of erotic romance they could find, and then built a public bonfire to burn away those books, would we be cool with that? After all, the activity would have eroded something that some people don’t like. For me, this isn’t OK. We all don’t like everything. I’m not a fan of hunting, but it’s not my place to bust into the homes of hunters and steal their rifles because I don’t like what they do with them. I equate this example with the cheaters. You don’t have to like what they do, but stealing their personal information and deciding to be judge and jury of their activity is not only illegal, it’s wrong.

One thing that’s not wrong is for you to voice your thoughts in the comments below. We love to hear from our readers. And follow us at Lady Smut. We’ll never steer you wrong.

 

 

 

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