Wish it was here:
But alas, I am visiting family in Maryland and Pennsylvania.
I’m happy to leave you with some reading.
Here’s five of my blog posts you might have missed.
In the mean time, don’t forget to subscribe to Lady Smut!
Wish it was here:
But alas, I am visiting family in Maryland and Pennsylvania.
I’m happy to leave you with some reading.
Here’s five of my blog posts you might have missed.
In the mean time, don’t forget to subscribe to Lady Smut!
By Alexa Day
I remember the night I encountered Vincent Bugliosi’s Reclaiming History for the first time. At the time, I lived across the street from a big box bookstore. (I should say that’s not an ideal situation for someone with a book addiction. I should say that, but I’m not going to.) One night, as I was making my rounds from Romance to Erotica to Literature to the clearance shelves, I noticed Reclaiming History on the corner of its shelf.
It’s hard not to notice it, actually, because it’s a big book. The unabridged edition is about 1600 pages long. The endnotes are on a CD-ROM tucked into the back cover.
It was soooooo big. I had to have it.
I played it cool and strolled around the store for a while, pretending I wasn’t interested in it, but I didn’t really have a chance. I took that weighty tome home with me, and Bugliosi’s exhaustive treatment of the Kennedy assassination has kept me company ever since.
Reclaiming History is not my first Great Big Book, though. I have a history with them.
I bought Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy because it was big. Sure, I looked at the jacket copy before I bought it. I played the same little game where I picked it up and put it back and walked around and picked it up again. But unlike my periodic dalliances with Bugliosi, Seth’s love story pulled me right in and wouldn’t let go. I turned the last page fully expecting to find more story. When there was none, I flipped back a few pages to make sure I hadn’t gotten a defective copy, something with blank pages where the end of the story should have been. What a strange feeling that was — after so much story, to want more of it. But that’s what a big book can do for you. I felt like I’d moved into A Suitable Boy the way a person moves into a house.
And there have been others. Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander Series was still just a trilogy of nice, hefty books when I encountered them in law school. I should have been reading all my neglected volumes of legal gravitas at the time, but the heart wants what it wants, and it did not much want contract law. The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George came later, when I needed to get lost in the tapestry of another woman’s history.
Today things have changed a little. I still have a couple of pretty big books around. Next to me right now are two books I bought because they were heavy for their size: Brad Meltzer’s The Book of Fate and Bernice Layton’s Mind Games. Wise purchases on my part – I’m enjoying both of them.
But I can’t sink into the giant books the way I used to. I don’t know if my day job is slowly destroying my attention span or if I’m not making enough sacred space in my life for reading or what. I’m learning to enjoy shorter works, but I certainly miss the Great Big Books. These days I daydream of an afternoon long enough to immerse myself in a long, long narrative. And maybe a little herd of employees to take care of the household while I’m reading.
I daydream big, too.
Follow Lady Smut. We do not believe in playing small!
By Liz Everly and the Lady Smut bloggers
Hello, Sexy! It’s a very special Saturday in the States because it’s the start of a long holiday weekend. But I think we should all celebrate today with some good reading from the blog-o-sphere. Have fun!
Drive-thru sex boxes in Zurich
100-year-old Sex Therapist Tells it Like it IS (We’ve posted this last week, but love it so much we posted it again.)
Porter Anderson on e-book cards.
No tops, please, we’re British. Actress Keira Knightley exposes breasts to join #freethenipple campaign.
Get out your wallet. Here are the 10 most expensive perfumes in the world.
Oh, the things you learn making a living as a porn banner designer.
Got some time on your hands (or maybe you just don’t feel like working!). Try to guess the classic first lines of novels written in emojis.
Dating naked works!
One young woman is 29 and one is 31. See if you can spot the difference.
Apparently ASK MEN knows us better than we know ourselves when it comes to WHAT WOMEN WANT IN A MAN.
This bookseller is talking about children’s books, but the study of selling diverse books is interesting nonetheless.
I know YOU know better, but here are five things your waxer wants other people to stop doing before Brazilians.
Who wants to field test sex coffee? You know, in the name of science.
C. Margery Kempe here to introduce a fellow Harper author, Zara Stoneley who’s got a sexy new title that mixes up horses, dogs, hot men and strong women in beautiful Cheshire. Welcome, Zara — and take it away!
Over the last two years I’ve had a few books published, erotic novels and erotic romances and I’ve noticed a trend. My muse has been edging me back closer to home. Persistently. And then, at the end of last year, my editor gave me the final shove and I found myself writing the type of book that a good friend of mine told me I should have been writing from the start.
So, Stable Mates is a bit different to my previous titles – it’s my first ‘bonkbuster’. The type of book I used to devour, but with a more modern twist. If you’re a Brit then the word ‘bonkbuster’ will probably make you think of Jilly Cooper, or Fiona Walker or Tilly Bagshawe. If you’re not…
Okay, so from the Oxford English Dictionary (where else?) we have the definition “a type of popular novel characterized by frequent explicit sexual encounters between the characters.” A play on the term ‘blockbuster’ and bonk, British slang for sex.
It’s been called a ‘romp through the English countryside’, and there is quite a bit of ‘romping’, but with this story you could take the sex out and it would still be a story (maybe not quite as much fun, but…) so I’ve gone sexy, as opposed to erotic…
This is no autobiography, but it’s a world I know and love – fit horsemen, fun people, gentle humour, laughs and the odd tragedy. Still naughty, but not taking itself seriously. My editor said it still made her giggle even on the third read through, and she loved all (well maybe not quite all) the men in it. And there are plenty. Mick is mine though!
‘It’s darker here, isn’t it?’ He looked up at the inky sky, lit with tiny pinpricks of stars.
They both stared up silently and then he stubbed the cigarette out slowly, and Pip
watched as he ground it round and round, smaller and smaller. ‘Do you think you’ll stay here,Tom?’
‘I hope so. This has to be better for Tabatha than what she had before.’
‘And what about for you?’
‘It feels like I belong.’ Even drunk, he instantly regretted the impulsive words. ‘Will you stay?’
‘Okay.’ One simple word. She stood up, held out a hand, smiling as he straightened up cautiously.
And as Tom slowly stripped her in the small cottage bedroom, chintzy curtains open so that the moonlight could slip into the room and caress her slim body with its silvery hue, he stared almost mesmerised at the round perfect breasts, at her unashamed naked stance.
And as her nipples hardened under his gaze, his cock stirred in response. He reached out, rubbed one rosy bud gently with his thumb. God, he couldn’t remember the last time he’d needed someone this badly. She slowly unbuttoned his shirt, slipped it from his shoulders and ran the point of her nail down over his chest until it slipped into the waistband of his trousers.
Tom felt the ragged breath leave his body. It was a bloody good job he was half-cut or this would be over the second he was inside her. And he so didn’t want that, for either of them.
A shiver ran over his body, a need, a want. It had been a long time since he’d been with a woman, much, much longer since he’d been with one who wanted nothing in return. Simple, straightforward pleasure, mutual need. And as he pushed Pip gently backwards so that she toppled onto the bed, he was sure that it was exactly what he was about to get.
Thanks for having me here today!
Bestselling author Zara Stoneley lives in deepest Cheshire surrounded by horses, dogs, cats and amazing countryside. When she’s not visiting wine bars, artisan markets or admiring the scenery in her sexy high heels or green wellies, she can be found in flip flops on the beach in Barcelona, or more likely sampling the tapas!
Zara writes hot romance and bonkbusters. Her latest novel, ‘Stable Mates’, is a fun romp through the Cheshire countryside and combines some of her greatest loves – horses, dogs, hot men and strong women (and not forgetting champagne and fast cars)!
She writes for Harper Collins and Accent Press.
Find out more about Zara:
Secrets and scandals, love and lust – when the ‘Cheshire Set’ are up against the ‘Footballer’s Wives’ the only common ground is carnal…
Flirting and fun seem the perfect antidote for Lottie’s battered heart, and where better to find them than back in tranquil Tippermere, home of sexy eventer Rory Steel, the smiling Irish eyes of hunky farrier Mick O’Neal, and mysterious newcomer, model Tom Strachan?
But when landowner Marcus James drops dead unexpectedly, and the threat of his waggish wife Amanda selling the heart of the village out from under them looms large, things look like they’re about to heat up in and out of the saddle.
With tensions running high, and the champagne flowing as freely as the adrenalin, is it any wonder that love catches more than one of them unawares?
Buy links –
Matthew Mcconaughey did not win the Emmy for his pessimistic brainiac role in TRUE DETECTIVE. He was robbed. Robbed I tell you.
Why do we care? Because Bryan Cranston’s win was Matthew Mcconaughey’s loss, and that’s just not right.
Although, Mr. TRUE DETECTIVE can’t exactly cry me a river can he? “So you won the Oscar, the Sexiest Man Alive and now you want the Emmy, too?” Harrelson quipped. “Isn’t that a little bit greedy?”
I still say Mccaunghey deserved the Emmy over Bryan Cranston. I’ll admit BREAKING BAD had the most engrossing–if confounding–father/son-ish bromance going on, but after all the years of all the other Emmy wins, did they really deserve to sweep the Emmy’s again? I think not.
But my real tears are reserved for MASTERS OF SEX. I’m glad Allison Janey won, because she’s wonderful. All the acting in this show is quite excellent. Almost everyone plays a bit against type. The show is full of richly layered characters, in a Mad Man-esque sort of way. It features my favorite fantasy: smart women paired against very attractive, if somewhat tortured men.
Yet I am probably most impressed with Michael Sheen. For Michael Sheen to go from chewing the scenery as King of the Lycans in UNDERWORLD to this uptight and repressed product of his time, who is still earnestly curious about how sex really works is wonderful to behold. I mean, my lust for Mcconaughey’s body aside, Sheen is the one who really deserves an Emmy. Hell, I’d give him an Emmy just for his exceptionally good taste in dating Sarah Silverman.
Now I know other folks may not appreciate the show. Some (including my husband) have pointed out that the show is nothing but talking heads interspersed with some artful moaning by a naked women on a bare table having another orgasm.
My response is So??? What’s wrong with that?
MASTERS OF SEX is about the revolution of women. Did we really think women could become equal to men while still sexually hobbled?
The show reveals the evolution of sexual enlightenment in the modern age, and that’s something to celebrate, people.
It’s a show that’s all about authoritative societal repression vs. bacchus — and bacchus almost always wins.
The show is an advocate for of the good side of sex that empowers people–especially women–no matter what form it takes.
To my mind it deserves as many Emmy’s as they’ve got.
Meanwhile, if you want to stimulate your happy zone, follow Lady Smut. We’ll give you pleasure every day of the week.
Maybe I’m late to the party, but I had no idea there’s an app that will put virtual condensation on my phone screen so I can doodle on it like a steamy bathroom mirror. So useful! Or an app that’ll make fart noises I can play for my friends. Sure to make me the envy of all! Yet for all the crazy apps out there, I came across one the other day that made my Lady Smut antenna perk up with interest. It’s called Peppr, and it allows potential johns to easily hook up with available “ladies of the night” in their area. It provides pertinent info such as physical descriptions and price lists for offered services, and then for a small booking fee the appointment can be made. It’s simple, it’s discreet, and … oh wait. Only available in Berlin.
Prostitution, and the advertising of it, is completely legal in Germany. Whatever the underlying circumstances, if one chooses it as a profession there are methods in place to try to make it safer than, say, just turning a blind eye to women walking the streets and hoping for the best. Germany’s Prostitution Act of 2002 was designed to make it possible for prostitutes to get health insurance and social security, along with improving conditions under which they work. The idea was to treat it like any other job and allow the workers measures of protection as well as the ability to save for retirement by paying into pension schemes. And legal apps like Pepper ease away from the sex trade the need for pimps.
Given that there’s no way we’re never not going to have hookers around, why not try to regulate it, right? Or so goes the thinking. After all, estimates have been made that the German legal sex trade is worth a staggering 16 billion euros a year. But is the approach there working? Depends on who you ask. Human rights advocates estimate that 90% of sex workers are forced into the trade. Yes, you read that right. 90 percent. Women from poorer eastern block countries like Bulgaria and Romania have flooded the German sex trade market and caused prices to tumble. Many of them are also willing to undertake risky sex acts – such as not requiring condoms – making it tougher for those who balk at it to get business. Yet there are women who willingly enter the business and who hunger for the opportunity to do so legally. Hmmm. So what’s a prostitution-supporting country to do? Perhaps try the Swedish approach.
In Sweden it’s not legal to sell sex, but it is illegal to pay for it. So if a john gets busted, it’s only he who’s in trouble, not the one offering the services. This approach is gaining traction in other European countries, most notably France. But see, here’s the problem. Germany’s building huge mega brothels right along the German/French border. So if France gets tougher on those in the sex trade, willing clients just make a quick trip across the border and presto-chango! German workers willingly – and legally – await them.
With prostitution, as with many things nowadays, the internet has changed the way business is conducted. The Economist recently published an interesting article about the business of the sex trade, citing the app Peppr that I referenced earlier, as well as talking about chat forums where sex workers can ask questions of one another about anything from cleaning sheets to finding quick childcare. Prostitutes are maintaining their own websites, learning about SEO, and for the most part functioning like any other freelancer. Their expertise just happens to be sex.
Sex is going to happen, and people are going to pay for it. Are new ways of thinking about the sex trade industry and available opportunities on the ‘net for those in the biz a positive step forward or a path toward disaster? Sound off below and follow us at Lady Smut. We’ll keep you thinking.
By Megan Morgan
I became a writer at fourteen. ‘Became a writer’ sounds as though I burst upon the literary world, educated and adroit, with a masterfully-penned bestseller in my hands. This was not the case.
You’re going to laugh. It’s okay.
I was ‘that’ teenager, the Gothy, morbid one that loved horror movies and horror novels. Anything scary and scream-y and bloodcurdling, I was there. I was a fan of the top horror writers at the time–Clive Barker, Anne Rice, Tanith Lee, Stephen King–especially Stephen King. That was why, at the tender age of fourteen, I decided I would be the next Stephen King. Nay, Stephen King times ten.
This was quite the delusion of grandeur, to claim I would be Stephen King’s nemesis, especially since I hadn’t so much as written an entire short story up until that point. But hey, it gave me a place to start.
For most of my teens and adult life, I wrote horror–apart from a brief spate in my early twenties when I became uncharacteristically religious and decided it no longer lined up with my world views. Then I wrote sci-fi and fantasy.
One thing I definitely didn’t write was romance.
I was caught up in the notion held by certain literary echelons that romance and erotica are not ‘real writing.’ That, despite holding for decades the largest share of the bookseller’s market, producing more titles, authors, and bestsellers than any other genre, raking in millions in revenue, and having books made into movies and translated into all languages, romance is the bottom of the literature barrel: the dregs, the scum. The fluff no one takes seriously.
For me, who tried in vain to keep romance from leaking into my work (and stomping my foot when it wouldn’t go away), it was a case of the lady doth protest too much.
The literary world is still full of people who don’t believe romance and erotica have any merit. We will probably never change these people’s minds. However, we can laugh at them. Laugh, because, they’re either floating on a sea of delusion or drowning in a lake of double standards.
Love and sex are everywhere, in everything. Why do romance and erotica writers garner ridicule for putting it center stage?
Love seeps into every form of entertainment we consume–movies, TV shows, books. Love stains every ‘proper, respectable’ archetype, from the bitter action hero who goes on a rampage to avenge his wife’s murder, to the warlord who saves the princess, to the misunderstood villain trying to save his family. In real life, it’s even more intense. Most people spend their lives in pursuit of love and sex: find a partner, find a mate, find someone to grow old and have children with. People move mountains to protect the one they love. Life is a romance novel. If you’re lucky, life is an erotic romance novel.
Three years ago, I finally gave in. I became a real writer. I discovered in the process I’m much better at writing about matters of the heart and matters beneath the sheets than I am about vampires. Oh, wait–I still write about vampires, they just get it on now. As vampires should and would.
I haven’t given up horror though, as I write urban fantasy as well. Same flavor, but with a little dash of love and sex, the stuff I always tried to keep from creeping in.
I’m sorry, Stephen King, it looks like we won’t be fighting to the death after all. However, if you want to go, Nora Roberts, come find me.
Megan Morgan is a paranormal romance, erotica, and urban fantasy author from Cleveland, Ohio. Bartender by day and purveyor of things that go bump at night, she likes her fiction scary and sexy. She’s a member of the RWA and trying to turn writing into her day job, so she can be on the other side of the bar for a change. Currently published with House of Erotica, she is also the author of a three-book urban fantasy series coming soon from Kensington Press.
by Kiersten Hallie Krum
I spent most of my weekend writing a strip scene for my work in progress. Well, not a standard strip scene; my heroine has a burlesque act that is key to how she expresses her sexuality.
Originally, when I was mentally mapped out the skeleton of this book, I’d envisioned her as a straight-up stripper–erm, erotic dancer–but my friend and critique partner made this face when I suggested it. You know the face. Yeah, that one.
I’d envisioned an empowered heroine who took her clothes off not in some inner city titty bar or in a skeevy road house, but in a classy club where she turned the whole potentially debasing experience into an expression of her sexual power. When I told my CP that, she made The Face. “You’re going to have a hard time selling that.” See, my CP has had a very, very eclectic life, one which somehow involved getting to know a group of strippers (I’ve yet to get her to drink enough red wine to tell me the whole story.) If she says it’s not gonna fly, I believe her.
Unwilling to give up easily (surprise!), I turned instead to burlesque. I like burlesque; I enjoy me a good show especially one with a flair for the dramatic. Burlesque manages to turn the tawdry into deliciously naughty. It’s classy and sexy and fun. Painted with the tones of old circus shows crossed with vaudeville and dance halls and decadent turn-of-the-20th-century clubs like the Moulin Rouge, burlesque is a damn good time. Added to that, yes, it is empowering. I’ve watched documentaries on modern burlesque shows, current burlesque classes, and the history of burlesque. I’ve seen testimonials from women recovering from emotional and sexual conflict and abuse who cautiously are re-learning how to value their selves and their bodies through burlesque. I can’t possibly understand it fully, but I find it fascinating and inspiring.
It’s a sad state of society that male striptease doesn’t bear the same stigma that accompanies women strippers. Certainly, the successful movie Magic Mike painted the male revue as a fantasy for the women patrons, the boyfriends they never could have in real life. I’m interested to see how and if the recently released the documentary by actor Joe Manganiello, La Bare, a behind-the-scenes feature on the lives of male strippers, supports or disproves this image. (It also features model Ruben, stage name “Angelo”, who was an Ellora’s Cave Caveman cover model and who was gunned down while defending another man outside a Dallas club in 2012.)
But until then, I vicariously burlesque.
Do you think there’s a difference between stripping and burlesque or are we just kidding ourselves? Will Romancelandia be able to handle a heroine in non-erotica/erotic romance who takes her clothes off for money and doesn’t apologize for it?
Follow Lady Smut. We never lose our flair for the dramatic.
By Alexa Day
It’s been almost a year since I joined this merry bunch, and I think we’ve come to know a little about each other. So you know that I’m not a prude. I probably don’t have to keep insisting that I’m not a prude, right? You know about my stance on robot sex (yes, please) and airport sex (yes, please) and all the rest. You’re smart, discerning folks; you get that I’m not a prude.
I’m all in favor of the dirty talk, for instance. I like writing the sort of heroine who doesn’t mind a little of the coarse language, the kind of woman who’s okay with all the various words used to describe all the various parts and acts that come into play in erotic fiction. My typical heroine is not easily shocked, unless it’s by the depth of her emotions for the hero.
Having said that, I find that my genre’s comfort level with coarse language has given rise to a disturbing trend. I think characters are starting to get a little too comfortable with profanity, dirty talk, and general vulgarity.
I know that sounds a little prissy. Bear with me here.
Let us briefly consider the humble f-bomb: f*ck.
As is the case with so many words, there is absolutely a time and place for the word “f*ck.” If you’ve watched something you value fall through space toward the floor, the ground, or the swirling waters of a newly flushed toilet, you know what I’m saying. But as much as we need the word “f*ck” for those purposes, there are just as certainly places we don’t need it or don’t need quite so much of it.
I don’t think we need so much “f*ck” in bed, but then, I don’t think we need so much dialogue in bed. One of my friends called me on this during an impromptu reading over drinks in her living room. “We just don’t do all this talking,” she said. “I mean, do people do all this talking?”
I also think men are less likely to use “f*ck” when they’re with a woman they’re starting to care about. Men are such strange creatures. The more they care about a woman, the more they’re inclined to clean up their mouths, unless they’re in the throes of it. In other words, it makes more sense to me that a man would find himself chanting, “f*ck f*ck f*ck,” on the way to climax than whispering, “F*ck, I love you,” during the postcoital cuddle. A certain reverence attaches to a declaration of love, particularly in a romance. Doesn’t “f*ck” dilute that?
And I have to wonder about those fictional men who open up with the explicit dialogue right after meeting the heroine. I mean, I get that we’re living in a world of frank speech, and I did just say that my heroines have no problem with that. But I think a girl has to be particularly DTF before she’s open to hearing about a man’s cock and his plans for it right after being introduced. The dance of seduction has more than one step, after all. What we might lose in ballsy initiative, we’d gain in anticipation. Subtlety doesn’t kill confidence. Subtlety amplifies confidence.
I don’t want to come down too hard on one side or the other. So much of this is just a matter of taste. I just think people in real life use the word “f*ck” in real conversation a hell of a lot less than it seems to appear in erotic dialogue. Maybe part of it is an author’s eagerness to make sure her men don’t sound like women. Maybe it’s an effort to sound edgy — every “f*ck” means this isn’t your mom’s romance novel. But I think there’s a point where f*ck-heavy dialogue starts to sound like that teenager at camp who’s trying too hard.
I would know. I was that teenager.
So what do you think? Am I, despite my protestations, a prude? Let me know in the comments.
And follow Lady Smut, for f*ck’s sake.