Tag Archives: Harlequin

It’s RT Week and the Sexy Is High

1 May

by Kiersten Hallie Krum

The RT Booklovers convention burns through Atlanta this week, a hot time in the old town tonight. This is an inauguration year at RT for Lady Smut, and, in true Lady Smut style, we’re kicking it off with the “Never Have You Ever, Ever, Ever” special reader event filled with crowns and swag…and sexy confessions. Later in the week, those of us here at Lady Smut who are not blessed enough to be attending with share a few naughty confessions of our own with you lovely readers. So be sure to keep checking in with Lady Smut as we work to bring the sexy all week long…in Atlanta and beyond.

While our intrepid bloggers are winging their way southward to the RT convention, I’ll be headed to the Great White North for a long weekend in Toronto. Speaking of Toronto, how in the WORLD did I miss these hilarious ads from Harlequin? What ads, you say? I’m glad you asked…

They may not be Ellora’s Cavemen, but a  Toronto-based advertising company has put together these fantastic ad campaigns for Harlequin Books featuring every woman’s current favorite hero: the viking and the cowboy. Have you ever wanted to go bowling with a six foot six viking? Or have a romantic mid-day lunch with a hot cowboy–horse and all? Well, these ladies are living the dream.

The ladies are professional actors who are in on the joke–and comfortable with improvising–but it’s the expressions on people’s faces as they watch the date unfold that kill me, especially when the viking lifts the woman’s leg up to put on the bowling shoe. And the looks they get when they start making out after Viking man bowls a spare? I giggled, I won’t lie.

Or maybe your dream has been to ride down the middle of a major metropolitan city on the back of a horse, arms wrapped around you cow-poking honey, who comes complete with chaps and a lasso? Rope ’em, cowgirl. When he flips the coat check girl at the swanky urban restaurant a quarter to stable his horse, I cracked up. Most of the lunchers in this one are women, so the looks our romantic couple garner here are much more of the envious variety. And really, who can blame them?

Want more Make A Date with Harlequin action? Head over to the “Make a Date with Harlequin” event at RT this week on Thursday morning from 8:30 to 9:45 AM. This is a chance for readers to meet their favorite Harlequin authors, but who know? Maybe there’ll be a viking or cowboy making a romantic appearance! Come back here to Lady Smut and tell me/us who showed up to make your morning!

This isn’t this ad agency’s first foray into the fields of romantic tropes on behalf of the romance novel publisher behemoth. Last year’s campaign was about how you could carry a myriad of romantic heroes in your moderately sized purse, helpfully sprucing up the hours of your humdrum life. What will they come up with next year? Paranormal in the boardroom?

The marketer in me is tickled purple by the campaign. The feminist in me has issues, and not only because these women think girly giggles are the way to go here. I’m not thrilled with the stereotype that women who read romance are on the plump and/or homey side of attractiveness, nor do I adore that the idea is that this romance is fantasy and not that romance is feminist fiction (because, it is). But I’m amused and entertained enough to let my feminist pique take a Diet Coke break.

Whatever direction you’re headed in this week–north or south–be sure to stick with Lady Smut all the way. If you’re at the RT conference, check out our Never Have You Ever, Ever party…and bring along your naughtiest confessions.Win crowns, fetish toys, books and more! Goodybags to first 100 people in line! Wednesday, May 3 at 1:30.

Writer, singer, editor, traveler, tequila drinker, and cat herder, Kiersten Hallie Krum avoids pen names since keeping her multiple personalities straight is hard enough work. She writes smart, sharp, and sexy romantic suspense.

Now available exclusively from Kindle. Click image to buy!

Her debut romantic suspense novel, WILD ON THE ROCKS, has been nominated for InD’Tale Magazine’s prestigious RONE award! Visit her website at www.kierstenkrum.com and find her regularly over sharing on various social media via @kierstenkrum.

Seeking Sexy Stories

6 Feb

SONY DSCWe write a lot on Lady Smut about romance and sex. We like it, we read about it, we write about it, we talk about it. But it occurred to me that we may have a “can’t see the forest for the trees” kinda thing going on with our own blog. What I mean is, because we’re so entrenched in the industry, we’re also very familiar with where one can go to download hot, sexy stories. But such may not be the case for our readers. While it’s easy enough to do a search on Google, what you get back may very well be nothing more than  information overload. There are a lot of publishers of romance and erotic romance out there. But which ones are good? Which ones really put their writers to the test to offer up quality stories and not just poorly written, cheap schlock that’ll make you regret ever opening chapter one. How does an interested reader wade through the morass?

Fear not! Lady Smut is here to help. Here we offer some suggestions on where to find quality erotic romance for the most discerning reader (and a couple of places to avoid).

Carina Press is the digital arm of Harlequin. They publish both erotic romance and erotica. Carina says their digital focus allows them “greater flexibility” (according to their website) in the type of stories they acquire. The flexibility, one assumes, is from the mothership of Harlequin itself which likely has more rigid criteria in what its editors can bring in. Carina has the benefit of the Harlequin marketing machine (and $$) behind it and produces high quality books. The erotic romance stories are definitely hot, but if you’re looking for truly scorching reads, there are a few more publishers for your consideration.

Founded in 2000, Ellora’s Cave is a well-established publisher of erotic romance. They feature four imprints: Romantica, their own trademark blend of erotic romance; Exotica, where the emphasis is on the heroine’s sexual journey instead of the development of a relationship; EC for Men, featuring hot stories from the man’s point of view;  and Blush, Ellora’s Cave’s “traditional” romance imprint with less emphasis on sex. Ellora’s Cave has been around for awhile and offers a large variety of lines within their imprints to suit an array of tastes.

I would be remiss for failing to mention my own publisher, The Wild Rose Press. TWRP will be publishing my contemporary erotic romance, Hot Bayou Nights, later this year. Their tagline is “where romance blooms,” and their hot line, the Scarlet Rose books, are “where passion burns.” TWRP publishes in both electronic and print and has a variety of erotic romance stories ranging from “traditional” male/female to menage, BDSM, and homosexual.

Some other reputable, established erotic romance publishers include Samhain, Loose ID, Phaze, New Concepts, and Carnal Desires, which says they publish “sophisticated erotic literature.” A peek at their site, however, does state that romance must be central to the plots so I’m including them here.

Several publishers feature BBW (big, beautiful women) stories. Resplendence Publishing is one of them. They have a nice looking, easy-to-navigate website with BBW right at the top. Draumr Publishing seems to have a very strong emphasis on BBW romance, although their website leaves something to be desired.

If you’re looking for gay romance there are a lot of good publishers to select from, including Torquere Press, Ravenous Romance, and ManLove Romance.

Lastly, I mentioned a couple of places to avoid. Because we at Lady Smut are erotic romance writers, we would never recommend publishers who’ve been listed with questionable dealings with their authors. Among them I would list Red Rose Publishing (not in any way to be confused with The Wild Rose Press); Noble Romance, and Naughty Nights Press.

I’m hopeful that I’ve introduced you to at least one or two new publishers. Give these presses a chance. Check out their websites and the books they offer and pick up some hot new sexy stories. Enjoy!

%d bloggers like this: