Today’s Guest Post hails from Lilly Rose, sub and blogger, whose site can be found here.

I am a kinkster and am officially here to guide you through your romp into BDSM

First off, the obvious: every Dom is not rich, attractive, and generous.  A Dom is not going to show up at your door like some handsome Prince Charming.  The chances of that are about the same as the chances as in the non-kinky “vanilla” world: kinda slim.  

Now that we straightened that out.

Don’t hook up with a Dom and mistake sex for love

Please. Please. Please don’t make that hasty assumption. In BDSM it is very important to discuss the Dom’s intentions from the very start.  Is he looking for a play partner or something with deeper long-term implications?   Is he monogamous or does he have many subs with whom he shares time?   Is he polyamorousMany kinksters do not believe in monogamous love

Make sure you know what you want and what the beliefs of your play partners are.  Have open discussions about it.  Be honest.  People appreciate honesty. 

Kinky sex, if done properly, can be fabulous or can leave scars that last a lifetime on the inside as well as outside of your body.  You have to be more careful with kink as some fetish play can be quite dangerous. 

Pick your Kinky Fuckery

Do you like to be teased with a feather?   Do you like the idea of being tied up?  Do you like to pretend you’re a secretary and you’ve been a bad girl? Do you like the thought of being punished with a spanking?  Does watching porn where the girl is being humiliated get you hot? You go!  Those are your fetishes.  Embrace them! 

Now you Doms out there, if you like doing all that then get yourself a sub and go to town!  There are sites that advertise for subs and Doms as well as meetings where you can find people in your area who are interested in every type of kink fetish play.  There are also many informational blogs and seminars on kink/BDSM.  Some are erotica and others are chock full of information and experiences in the scene that can help you. 

Meet your playmates for coffee and see if the chemistry and feel is right

Make it consensual.  Now you don’t have to have your lawyer draw up a legal document.  Just sit down with your Dom or sub in a public space and discuss your hard/soft limits, your safe word, and safe action and aftercare.  Write them down on a piece of paper as a list. 

You can negotiate changes later.

What are Hard and Soft Limits and Aftercare?

Hard and Soft Limits

Hard limits are those things you absolutely will not do.  Like maybe you never ever want permanent scars from play. 

Soft limits are things you are not quite sure about.  Maybe you might like a flogging now or then you just may not know at the present moment.

Safe Words

“No” doesn’t cut it. Pick a safe word. That is the word you utter when you absolutely want the play to end.  We say “no” during sex all the time when we don’t mean it. Especially in kink play. Another word is absolutely necessary to let your Dom know when to stop.   

Safe Actions

You never know when you are going to be gagged or your partner decides to put his hand over your mouth.  Then you will not be able to say your safe word and you need a safe action!


Let’s talk about aftercare.  Aftercare is crucial!  Aftercare is your Dom play partner checking in on you and making sure you are ok after a scene.  This may range from putting ointment on your butt after a paddling, to giving you a bubble bath, or just plain cuddling. 

It is really important that he asks if anything upset you, especially if something made you feel unexpectedly uncomfortable during a scene.  This may happen with even the best planning and the best Dom.  That is why aftercare must always be done!

O.K. then, now that we have you on a more rational plane of thought, I can give you some real advice on how to proceed to get your kinky urges realized in a healthy, safe, delicious way!

Build Trust before you find your Inner Goddess

Feeling good the ultimate goal of any kind of BDSM play!  If planned well, you can have a vanilla orgasm times 100 in kink play that leaves you in a fantabulous trance.  Yes, there are subs who are pain junkies and love sadists.  They get off on it.  If you are that type of person more power to you. 

But as in all sub/Dom relationships, trust has to be built up before any kind of intense play.  This takes time.  You are not going to be jumping into that dungeon right away and being beaten with a belt.  That would be foolish for a beginner.  Never rush into a relationship with a Dom in the BDSM world. 

Be Safe!

Know and Express Your Limits

In the BDSM world, it is absolutely necessary for safety to be upfront about everything.  BDSM is about testing your limits and going beyond the edge.  The only way you are going to know if you are ready for kink play is by discussing your hard and soft limits, your safe word or action (you may be gagged and unable to say it), and aftercare.

Be aware of sadists who cannot control their urges

In BDSM this is a definite NO NO.  Doms must be in control of their urges at all times.  A Dom will always have the sub’s best interest in mind. If a Dom tries to push you into something you are not comfortable with set him straight or move on. There are plenty of Doms out there in all shapes and sizes each with their own individual style and with years of experience.  Some Doms are more impatient with newbies, others love them. 

Risk of Infection

Most of all, and I can’t stress this enough, if you want to try BDSM at any age, but particularly if you are young, BE SAFE.  Some BDSM activity involves group play (gang banging), anal play, scat (ingestion of feces), and intercourse—watch out for germs and diseases kiddies—that all involve your share of dangers.  So always use a condom and never, ever do anal-to-mouth or anal-to-vagina

I know I am going to get a lot of flak for saying that from anal players but there are a lot of infections you can get from that play and quite frankly that is why it is not recommended by most doctors.  As a compromise you can always wash before doing anal-to-mouth or anal-to-vagina (keep a sanitizer and wash cloth handy).  Any safe kinkster would recommend that.  Otherwise, you are pretty much playing a dangerous game of sexual Russian roulette with your life.

Do your research, know thyself

Want to know how to tie up your girlfriends breasts with rope?  Don’t know what fetish you may like?  There are literally hundreds of fetish sites out there.  Some Doms and subs can pick and choose from the menu.  It is all good. There is no judgment in the BDSM community.  

Don’t know if you are straight or gay?  No problem: you are pansexual or your sexuality is evolving.  That is fine too.  The BDSM community is very friendly and open to all types of characters.  Welcome to our silly, quirky world where all your kinky desires come true!

Are you a reader?

There are many books out there which are excellent documents on BDSM, and just as sexy as 50 Shades of Grey.  Pauline Reage’s Story of O is considered the bible of BDSM sub training by most Doms.  You may not like everything in it.  It is a quick read, very well written and worth downloading or buying.   There is a film version of it which is a bit dated but still quite good.

Now, good luck to all you new Christian Greys and Anastasia Steeles!  Do your research, hunt for your mates, get your adorable bods out there and have fun, fun fun!

And remember if you have any questions you can always visit my site.  It is informational as well as steamy and I love to help fellow kinksters.

Laters…babies J

Lilly Rose


To read an excerpt, click here.

Let's talk to Andy Steele, the hero of Sue Lyndon's Dark Without You novella. Andy Steele, drummer for the band Soul Smashers, is a commanding presence standing 6'7" tall, blessed with blond good looks and a quick mind which does not suffer fools easily. Masterful yet tender, Andy Steele exudes a powerful sensuality which few women can resist. He demands obedience in and out of the bedroom, something Alice Grove finds she cannot do without.

It appears that spanking is something more than an erotic adventure for you. Can you talk about the significance of discipline in your relationship with Alice?

Andy: I’ve known Alice since we were kids, and I think it’s safe to say I know her quite well.  I’ve always had an inexplicable urge to look after her, as well as an urge to punish her and make her see the errors of her ways when she’s been naughty.  Her rebellious streak intensified when her parents died when she was a teenager.  Her brother adopted her, but he never paid much attention to her.  I kept a close eye on her and often threatened her with a spanking when I caught her up to no good.  I never followed through with my threats until she was an adult and willingly in my bed.  Because of our history together, the element of discipline in our relationship came naturally.

What is it about anal penetration you find so attractive?

Andy: The extra dimension of submission it requires, especially for a woman as headstrong as Alice, appeals to me greatly.  It can be erotic only, or work as part of a punishment.

You describe yourself as old-fashioned and clearly will be the master in the house. Have you always felt this way?

Andy: Yes, I suppose I’ve always felt this way, but Alice brings out the ‘master of the house’ inside of me more than any other woman.  Before Alice, this aspect of my relationships sometimes felt a little too much like play, and I suspect it was because my past girlfriends were simply indulging me as far as they could.  With Alice, it’s 100% real.

What was the turning point for you in your relationship with Alice? What made your relationship shift from friend to lover?

Andy: She got locked out of her hotel room in Chicago when she came to visit the band.  She knocked on my door, and the rest is history.

I have a few questions for Alice Grove, the plucky heroine of Dark Without You. Alice has survived several tragedies and trials by fire in her young life and clearly is a strong-willed and intelligent woman. Vitally attractive to Andy, Alice is a heroine with whom so many readers would want to identify.

Alice, it is clear that you are new to spanking and discipline in a relationship. What made you agree to bring your relationship with Andy to this level of intimacy? How did Andy win your trust?

Alice: Andy won my trust over the years we were friends.  I knew I could count on him for anything.  At first I thought he was way out of my league and that his interest in me was purely friendship, but once I realized he reciprocated my feelings, I trusted him on an intimate level and was open to his desire to include spanking and discipline in our relationship.

What do you find sexiest about Andy? What makes you love him?

Alice:  Hmm…I do admire his expressive, dark blue eyes.  It’s hard to pinpoint what makes me love Andy or when it first started – I just can’t imagine life without him.  I’d say I love everything about him, but that sounds silly, right?  A part of me loved him when we were kids.  I had a major crush on him back then, and that crush grew into love when we were older and we spent more time together.

Can you tell us a bit about what it is like to submit to your lover so completely? What is so satisfying about submission?

Alice:  I can’t imagine submitting to anyone but Andy.  I love and trust him with my whole heart, and I get a lot of satisfaction out of pleasing him.  This probably sounds cliché, but I worship the ground he walks on.  Submitting to him gives me a feeling of fulfillment I’ve never experienced before.  I have a history of pushing people away and not allowing anyone to get close to my heart, but Andy won’t let me behave this way toward him, and I love him for it.

And now a question or two for Sue Lyndon, author of Dark Without You.

Can you tell us to what the title refers?

Sue: The title is taken from a line in the book when Andy is contemplating what his life would be like without Alice, but I also think the title works both ways to describe their intense feelings for one another.

What was the inspiration for the story?

Sue:  I remember Alice’s character popping into my head first.  The rest of the story followed after that, but nothing in particular inspired the story that I can recall.  Usually my characters pop into my head first and I imagine them in different plots until I come up with something I like.

What's next on your plate? Any tidbits to share?

Sue:  I’m working on a BDSM erotic romance series called Alien Warriors.  The first book in this series, Surrender, was accepted by Etopia Press and will be out in a few months.  I’m currently working on the second two books in this series.  

I also have another spanking romance novella set to release in a few months with Blushing Books.  It’s called Shana’s Guardian and I’m very excited about it!

Last but not least – the sequel to my erotic romance novella, Valentine Submission, releases this week.  It’s called Tessa’s Submission and it will be available on Amazon.

Dark Without You is available on Amazon US, Amazon UK, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance.

Fantasy Author Karen de Lange
From Karen's work-in-progress which is, so far, only referred to as "The Novel". Ok Karen, now that this is "live" you better start thinking on a title! -- Soph.

The Story:

Liam Colley has lived isolated and alone since his exile in disgrace from the Associated Sovereignties. His life is disrupted by the arrival of Aleysa, a young girl from a nearby town. Discovering the extent of her psychic powers, he realises that she might represent his ticket home and sets about gaining her trust, starting off by cooking a spectacular meal using the food she has mysteriously brought with her.


Liam cooked a feast for them. Corn cobs drizzled with melted cheese; chicken wrapped in bacon in a spiced tomato sauce; strawberries dipped in chocolate. What he didn’t use he stored carefully in the cool box; hopefully it would keep a day or two.

Both the beers had gone by the time they sat down to eat; he rinsed the bottles out and filled them with water, giving one to Aleysa. She flicked hers sharply, waited a moment for it to grow cold, then drank deeply.

They ate in silence, greedily, savouring the medley of flavours. Afterwards, they cleared up in near-silence, each moving around the other to wash, dry and put away as though they had been doing it for years. When the place was tidy, Liam put some coffee on to brew, shaking the jar to tip out the absolute last of his precious supply.

Aleysa looked up as the smell wafted over to where she was sitting at the table. ‘What’s that?’

‘Coffee.’ The puzzlement on her face made him realise that she might need some clarification. ‘It’s a bit like tea. But tea is vile, and this isn’t.’

She craned her neck curiously as he poured his mug and brought it over to the table.

‘Here,’ he offered. ‘Try it.’

Taking the mug, Aleysa sniffed it and took a tiny sip. Liam laughed aloud at the disgusted expression on her face as she handed it back, shaking her head emphatically.

‘It can be an acquired taste. And this is the last of mine, so if you do acquire a taste then tough luck.’

‘I could try and get you some, if you like,’ she said.

‘Aye,’ he said. ‘About that. Where did all this spring from, anyway?’

‘Temple kitchens.’

‘Temple kitchens?’


‘What temple?’

‘Temple of Sirona.’

‘Aleysa!’ She looked up at the suddenly harsh tone of his voice. ‘Help me out here, will you? I promise, I’m not trying to get you into trouble. I just need to know what I’m dealing with here. Is someone going to come looking for you? What about your parents? Are they missing you right now? Trust me, I don’t much care what the answer is as mostly it’s your problem, not mine. But there might be something that is my problem, in which case I do need to know.’

He tried to conceal the twist of desperation inside himself. So much rested on this. Watching her carefully to try and gauge her reactions, he nearly missed the slight spark that kindled in her eyes. ‘Well?’ he prompted.

She cast her gaze down to her hands clasped in her lap, but he was almost sure that the reticence was an act. She hadn’t been shy about anything else so far.

‘Will you let me show you?’

Liam frowned. ‘What d’you... oh.’

Aleysa had brought one hand up and laid it, palm up, on the table.

He swallowed, turning over the possibilities. If he did this, would he be opening himself up to her? And, if he refused, would she just tell him what he wanted to know? Or would she leave? I don’t have much choice.

He laid his own hand – rough, large, fair – in her small dark one.

Had it not been for the moment he had discovered her emotions inside him, he would not have been prepared for what came next. He didn’t see her life laid out before him like a stage play; he heard no voice narrating her story. He just knew. Knew, as though he had lived it himself.

The day her grandmother had taken her to the Temple of Sirona – a place where the old and infirm were sent to die, no place for a young girl, but the only place that would have her. Her mother dead, her father unknown, her grandparents wanting nothing to do with her. Or maybe, as she realised now, afraid of her. At first, her days spent tending the sick, her education curtailed, but finding a small measure of satisfaction in the way she could soothe their pain, blocking it from their conscious minds. But then, so gradually, how the sisters of Sirona had seen that something was awry with her, something not quite the same as everyone else. A couple of slips on her part, revealing that she knew things she had no earthly right to know, and they were afraid of her too.

Banned from tending the patients, sent out of every room she entered, becoming invisible. Discovering that she could sneak out when she pleased and nobody would miss her. Hitching illicit rides on goods trucks leaving the town, just for the sake of going somewhere. Happening on the steep pass cutting through the ridge to the lake. Getting back whatever time of night she pleased, because nobody cared.

And the sly pinches, and the bruises, and the whispers, some that she was not meant to hear, some that she was. Half-caste witch, whore’s bastard and night-demon’s daughter.

He pulled away from her, making the table rock, pushing down the growing sense of exultation, hoping it didn’t show in his eyes. Keeping his voice even. ‘What do you want from me?’

She met his gaze steadily. ‘I want you to take me away from here.’

Today's Q & A is with author Cara Bristol

Could you explain to our readers just what is "domestic discipline"?
Domestic discipline is a lifestyle in which spanking occurs for punishment, rather than erotic sexual play. Typically, a husband and wife assume traditional sex roles: the man serves as the leader of the household  and the woman supports.  What’s most important for readers to know is that domestic discipline is a consensual practice – both persons agree the husband has the authority to spank. 

For some, it’s an extension of their natural Dominant/submissive personalities. Some couples even practice DD as part of their religious faith, citing biblical context for the practice, but for most, it’s simply the way they’ve chosen to define their relationship.  People may spank only for discipline, only for erotic enjoyment or both.  DD is a private practice (except when couples blog about it!) and many couples go to great pains to hide it from their vanilla friends. Even the children don’t know that daddy spanks mommy.

I actually found the secret lifestyle aspect of domestic discipline intriguing. The “what if” that authors play kicked into action.  What if spanking wasn’t private? What if, within a closed society, everyone knew about it and could talk about it openly? Thus I created the fictitious Rod and Cane Society. It’s a secret organization, but within its mansion walls, the members are free to discuss the “fact” that the men spank their wives to maintain discipline.

In Unexpected Consequences, the first Rod and Cane Society novel, a naïve, somewhat spoiled bride marries a member of the organization. He’s told her he will spank her if she disobeys, but she doesn’t really consider what that means. When she gets her first spanking,  it throws her world into turmoil.

Here’s the aftermath:

“I wish I hadn’t had to spank you,” Jared’s voice rumbled in her ear. “I expected more from you than to sneak behind my back. If you had a problem with my request, you should have discussed it with me.”

“I’m sorry,” she whispered, her head still bowed. “I’m sorry for going against your…wishes and buying the shoes.” She could see how spoiled and immature she’d acted, but how did a spanking solve anything?

He raised his hand as if to touch her, but let it drop. Relief and disappointment warred within her. She wanted to crawl away, to be alone with her thoughts, but perversely, she wanted Jared to hug her, show her with his touch their marriage would endure.

“It’s over now, Melania,” he said gently. “It won’t be an issue again.”

She knew he meant her disobedience and dishonesty. Those “issues” might be settled for him, but for her, the “issue” had just begun. The spanking upended everything she thought she believed, thought she wanted in her marriage. She’d vowed to love, honor, and obey for better or for worse, but she’d never considered the worse part. She needed space and time to figure out her next steps. She had to get away to think.

“You’d better fix your face and finish getting ready. Our guests will arrive soon.”

In False Pretenses, the second book in the series and my new release, Emma Dupree (introduced as a minor character in the first book) has gone undercover at Rod and Cane to expose the organization as a kinky group of pervs and make a name for herself as journalist. But she meets Dan, a member of the organization. Though their spanking starts out as erotic, he begins to see that she could use some discipline.

What do you say to detractors of spanking and domestic discipline?
What seems to give some people heartburn isn’t erotic spanking, but domestic discipline. I’m not going to try to convince anyone to accept it or try it if they’re opposed to it. However, I’d like to make two points. First, it’s consensual. Even when the spanking is done to punish, the person who is disciplined agrees to it. Second, excuse the pun – different strokes for different folks. You don’t have to like it or participate in it, but that doesn’t mean that someone who wants it shouldn’t engage in it.

In False Pretenses, Dan Tanner, the hero, has a strong spanking fetish and has begun dating Emma Dupree. He raises the subject of spanking over dinner.

Dan tilted his head to the side. “So what about adults spanking adults?”

“What about it?” Emma squirmed and pressed her thighs together. Just talking about spanking caught her in a strange emotional tug-of-war, jerked her between discomfort and excitement. She wanted to both slam a lid on the discussion and rip it wide open. Oh, the stories she could tell! The urge rose again to confide in him about the Rod and Cane Society and her friend Melania, who was spanked regularly by her husband and who not only consented to it, but relished it. 

“Do you approve, disapprove?”

“I don’t get it.” She pursed her lips. Even after interviewing dozens of Auxiliary wives, she didn’t have a clue why a woman would allow a man to rule their home, let alone permit him to apply a hand to her backside. She had flaws, but she’d dedicated herself to improving them. They didn’t give a man the right to order her around, to enforce his will by inflicting physical pain. “Spankings hurt, don’t they?” Her imagination flashed a scene of Dan smacking her ass as he fucked her from behind, and her heart went crazy in her chest.

Can you discuss the various spanking tools of the trade?
There are wooden paddles, leather-covered paddles, floggers, many different implements made specifically for spanking. There are various kinds of spanking benches used to position the spankee.  However, many other non-spanking items can be used: hairbrushes, wooden spoons, old fashioned rug beaters, rulers. Many spankos see implements in common items that vanilla people would never think of.

In False Pretenses, Dan notices the potential of Emma’s hairbrush right off. When he spanks her for the first time, that’s what he uses (but he warms her up with his hand first).  In this scene, Emma has agreed to be spanked, but is getting cold feet:

She heard a drawer close in the bathroom, and moments later, Dan reappeared.

“Dan, I think—” Her words fell away at the sight of the brush in his hand. Of all of them, he’d chosen the acrylic one with the wide, flat head and short rubber bristles used for detangling. Nervousness broke through the dam of bottled emotions and erupted in a burst of laughter. She clapped a hand to her mouth as her shoulders shook.

“What’s so funny?”

Tears welled in her eyes. “Th-that’s called…that’s called…a paddle brush!” 

“I guess I picked the right one, then.” He smacked it against his thigh.

Her laughter died. The words to tell him there would be no spanking clogged in her throat when he set the hairbrush on her coffee table. She gaped at the object she used every single day as if she’d never seen it before.

Here’s a playful, erotic spanking scene in Unexpected Consequences involving a wooden spoon:

Before she could blink, Jared lunged and grabbed the spoon out of the rack with one hand and her wrist in the other. As he dragged her toward a counter barstool, she dug in her heels, but her sandaled feet had little traction, and she slid across the tiled floor. He sat down and hauled her over his lap, then flipped her skirt over her waist.

She heard him suck in his breath, imagined his hands shaking as he smoothed his palms over her bottom, caressing each rounded cheek slowly, almost reverently. He sighed heavily, mockingly. “It’s a shame that such a gorgeous ass is wasted on such a naughty girl.”

“I am not naughty. It was your fault the cookies burned,” she protested. “And my ass is not wasted on me.”

Spanking 101: Could you give us a bit of insight into spanking as a sexual activity? Why do people enjoy it so much? For some it is a guilty pleasure which they never seek out, while for others it is integral to their sexual relationship.
I think there is a range from those who just want to fantasize about it to those who engage in the practice. I’m sure motivation varies from individual to individual, but for many people, it’s the act of surrendering or handing the control over another that is a turn-on as opposed to the actual spanking itself. The degree of trust that it takes to surrender creates intimacy. For women, emotional intimacy stirs physical intimacy. Many people who get involved with spanking were drawn to it very early in their lives.

In False Pretenses, Emma is in denial. She assumes she’s vanilla. But when she decides to allow Dan to spank her as “research” for her story, the circumstances prove otherwise.

She wiggled on Dan’s lap, but he clamped his arm across her back and yanked down her panties. Her breath hitched in her throat. She’d never felt so vulnerable, so…connected?

How was that possible? Her pussy throbbed along with her ass.

Cool air grazed her naked skin, but then Dan slapped her cheek, and the temperature soared. She had no protection from his stinging hand, no defense against her rioting emotions. She wanted to hate it, to loathe every painful second, but…she didn’t.

Each spank seared the point of contact before morphing into ripples of confusing yearning. Pain…pleasure. Pain…pleasure. Twin sensations danced within her in a baffling tango.

She dreaded every punitive kiss, kicking and writhing to escape.

She craved each one, lifting her hips to meet every smack.

Tell us a bit about other discipline scenarios
I’m not exactly sure what you mean, so I’ll toss a few darts at the question.  Some couples employ corner time with a spanking or might use “anal discipline,” i.e. plugs or ginger figging to make the other person uncomfortable. One common practice is “maintenance” spankings in which a person is spanked on a regular schedule. The purpose is to reinforce and remind them of the Dominant/submissive roles.

I address maintenance spankings in Unexpected Consequences. To her shock, Melania finds out that her dinner guests are all spanked wives.

She looked at Candi. Perky, smiling, seemingly happy Candi with the husband who liked to clown around. “How…how often do you get spanked?”

“Well, I’m on maintenance, so we agreed on at least once a month,” she answered.

“Maintenance?” Melania frowned.

Candi bobbed her head. “I get regularly scheduled spankings.”

Melania blinked. “You’re kidding. He spanks you for no reason?” Being punished was bad enough. Getting a spanking when you did nothing to deserve it was crazy. No—it was all crazy.

“There is a reason,” Candi insisted. “It’s good discipline. It reminds me to watch my mouth, show respect, and it reinforces that Tucker is in charge. It’s akin to exercising every day instead of only when you want to lose weight.” She grinned. “Or like eating fiber. It keeps me regular.”

Is there a difference between male versus female spanking? For example, do men spank differently or for different reasons than women in a typical--if one can use such a term--male-female relationship? Is it different for male-male or female-female
I haven’t really explored male-male or female-female spanking; I write about men spanking women (although I may soon write a woman spanking a man story). My personal opinion?  The motivations are the same.

What is the safe way to spank?
I’m not an authority on this, so I advise anyone looking to spank to do their research. But: you need to avoid hitting the lower back. Stick with the buttocks and the “sit spot” at the top of thighs. Begin with a hand spanking. Go light at first. If you do use a paddle, “warm up” with a hand spanking. Stop the action when you need to. Remember spanking is consensual: although the   “top”  may appear to be in control, it’s the “bottom” who really is. Be sure you can trust your partner.

What do you think of calling spanking a taboo sexual act or relationship?
A taboo is whatever society says it is. That doesn’t make it wrong. I personally think that American culture has a rather Puritanical view toward sex in general. Remember the uproar over Janet Jackson’s Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction? Good grief! So she flashed a little boob. It floors me that people would even care! However, making something taboo only entices people to want to try it. People want what they can’t have or are told they’re not supposed to have. So maybe I should tell them my books are taboo! LOL Thank you so much Sophie for having me today! I enjoyed your thought-provoking questions.

Author blog: http://www.carabristol.com

False Pretenses on Amazon.com

False Pretenses on Amazon UK

False Pretenses on Barnes & Noble

All Cara Bristol books on Amazon

Click here to view A S Fenichel's page.

Blog entry by A S Fenichel

Sophie is so wonderful to have asked me to be her guest here today. We spent a few emails trying to agree on a subject for my guest piece. She is quite open to anything. Evidently not even Obama Care is off limits. However, I will leave politics to someone better suited to the subject. I’ll bet you’re all sighing with relief.

One thing Sophie asked me in our email chat was, “Why Mayan is sexy?” This captured my attention. I’ve given it a lot of thought. I believe that part of what makes Mayan interesting is that the Maya people still exist. They are a Pre-Columbian culture that managed to escape the fate of so many others. The Maya peoples never disappeared like so many other Mesoamerican cultures. They survived the Spanish conquistadores and the subsequent Spanish colonization of the Americas. Today, the Maya and their descendants, form sizable populations throughout Central America and continue with a distinctive set of traditions and beliefs. They merged their pre-Columbian traditions and post-Conquest ideas and cultures. The language, Achí, is still spoken by millions of people. This is quite a feat while their world was in decline.

So why write about the Maya? Good question. Where else can you find, religion, mythology, folk lore, sacrifice and a fascinating culture, all in our own backyard, so to speak? Okay, so I obviously love this stuff. I admit that it’s a little geeky. Honestly, it was one of those moments when all the stars align.

1.      I was a Humanities and Social Science major. That means I spent a great deal of time (a long time ago) studying all of the Pre-Columbian cultures, including the Maya, Aztec, Olmec and Toltec.

2.      I had a crazy dream about a thief rescuing a woman from inside a bolt of lightning. (Everyone has those dreams, right?)

3.      I saw a call for entries for stories about the End of Days.

To most people these may seem like three totally unrelated events. To a writer they are like manna from heaven. The seed of a story is born in just this way. Then, if you have time, you let it stew for a while in the darkest part of your brain. If not, you start plotting, writing or researching.

I didn’t have much time on that first book. The call was only a month away. I had to write it and fast if I wanted to have a critique partner look at it before it was too late. I do work with a loose outline and miraculously Mayan Afterglow (my first End of Days themed book) pretty much stuck to the program.

And then, in yet another test of my humility, it was rejected immediately. This turned out to be a blessing because it forced be to submit elsewhere and Ellora’s Cave has been a wonderful group of people to work with.

I think I just got off topic. Oh well, Sophie did say I could talk about anything.

Sophie also asked me if there were any other areas, locations or times I want to explore in my writing and what inspires me. In fact, I am writing a time travel at the moment and I have a historical in the works too. I love to weave a tale around some bit of historical fact. Every history book and Discovery Channel episode is chocked full of inspiration. I love a good romance. That’s not entirely true. I even love a bad romance. Happily ever after are the words that started me reading fairytales and keeps me coming back for more. Sometimes, a simple kindness is enough to spark my imagination. My book shelves are packed to overflowing with a bevy of romance novels, science fiction and the classics. The lower two shelves carry the weight of Different Mythologies from Greek to Norse, travel guides, history, costume and fashion and an entire section about magic both dark and light. Discovery channel, The History Channel and National Geographic can all be wonderful sources of both inspiration and research.

Nothing that happens in my life is safe from my imagination. Every character starts from either a self-portrait or someone I know before they evolve into their own person. Most plots spark from something in my life. I am terribly afflicted with motion sickness. I thought that I’m lucky I don’t live in 1801 and the seed of a story was born. It turned out to only be used in the first scene of the book but an entire story sparked from building a character who has terrible seasickness. I hope to have that book published early next year.

Recently my second book, Mayan Craving was published with Ellora’s Cave. The inspiration came from Asher Dove, a secondary character in Mayan Afterglow. He was very young in the first book, but I always thought, give this kid five years and he’s going to be something else. So that’s exactly what I did. I also gave him Nancy Jones and her stubborn, impulsive behavior to contend with. I threw in the return of the Lord of the Dead and I had a story.

Thanks for taking the time to visit with me today. You can find more information about Mayan Craving on my Web site http://www.asfenichel.com. For anyone who’s interested, here are some buy links.

Ellora’s Cave: http://www.jasminejade.com/p-10057-mayan-craving.aspx

Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/Mayan-Craving-ebook/dp/B0080K3E00/

Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mayan-craving-as-fenichel/1110608660?ean=9781419939181

Kobo: http://www.kobobooks.com/ebook/Mayan-Craving/book-WzQKs8KmCUmY7m4-WB1zkQ/page1.html?s=HoybZBJlqE2RVLnOaEGGYw&r=1

Here are some other ways to reach me:

Blog: http://www.asfenichel.com/Blog--Mayan-Mentions.html

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/A.S.Fenichel

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/asfenichel

The lovely and talented Paula Tiberius
Guest Post by Paula Tiberius, author of The Cowboy Singer

An interview between Paula and your intrepid hostess (Sophie) can be found by clicking here.

Okay, not the kind of content you’re thinking of…unless you get off on talking about writing about sex.

I’ve been thinking a lot about sexual content since this whole Fifty Shades of Grey mania. Last week the trilogy captured the first, second, third, AND fourth spots in the E-Book Bestsellers list in the New York Times Book Review. Wow. 

Most erotic writers I know are also writers of other things, and they usually use a pseudonym for their ‘purple prose,’ saving their real names for everything else. Why is this? I’m not being judgmental – I’m included in this category. But it is strange. Why do we feel we have to pretend to be someone else as soon as vaginas and penises come into the picture, unless of course they come in small doses as in romance, and sometimes literary fiction?

Sexuality is a huge part of who we are as people and, let’s face it, primates, so these walls that we’ve constructed around what’s ‘decent’ is quite laughable, really.

I had an interesting conversation with my cousin who is a Mormon. She loved my book and asked if I might be able to take out the sex scenes (which she skipped over) so that she could recommend it to other Mormon women. I’m still scratching my head over this. On the one hand, I get it. Sex is something between a husband and wife only in many religions, and my characters aren’t married. But another part of me thinks – really?? Doesn’t it seem completely absurd that two adults would have a passionate courtship with no sex?

I realize I’m not going to unlock the chastity belt of puritanical Christianity in this blog, but I will say that I can’t pooh-pooh it altogether, because I too have my limits. They happen to include a lot more tolerance for getting down and dirty, but they are still limits.

For example, when I write sex scenes, there has to be context. In fact, I believe that this is the primary reason erotica is so popular with women. Women like context. We like emotional perspective. We like build-up – not necessarily foreplay, but a developing excitement of the other person and what they signify. Even if it’s just a one-night stand, or an anonymous quickie in a public bathroom, there’s still something that compels us to choose that person, that situation. Maybe he looks like her ex. Maybe she smells like roses from his childhood garden– who knows? But it’s not just some anonymous guy banging away with no nuance, or details. That would be…porn.

I think the Fifty Shades phenomenon definitely speaks to a zeitgeist, but it’s not what you think. The revelation is not that women are suddenly discovering erotica, hot sex, or even their own sexualities. It’s that they’ve made it clear (through sheer dollars) that it’s about time it’s ‘outed’ into the mainstream.

It reminds me of the movie Deep Throat, which became quite mainstream for a porn film, mostly because society was ready to be sexually liberated and wanted to express itself by supporting something naughty, calling it avant-garde. But of course the 1980’s were fast approaching, and the advent of home video quickly subverted all this exciting cross-over potential for porn to become mainstream. In the end, the actors and filmmakers were marginalized to the point of tragedy.

In a sense, with Fifty Shades, the opposite has happened. Never mind the home video revolution – now every piece of media is at our fingertips in seconds within the privacy of our own phone (home.) We don’t have to go to the bookstore to buy this new erotic book trilogy, so there is no issue of stigma. The books crossed-over to mainstream by first being a hit behind closed doors. The sheer sales and popularity could not be contained or marginalized.

I’m fascinated to see how far this tide washes up on the beaches of popular fiction, and in what ways the lines between romance and erotica will blur. For those of us writers who enjoy putting truly erotic sex scenes within the context of real stories, it’s a stimulating prospect!

Paula Tiberius will be here July 7, 2012 to talk about her first novel The Cowboy Singer.

Paula's site can be found here.

In her own words:

I wrote and directed the award-winning feature film Goldirocks, which came out theatrically in 2004 and played on Pay TV and cable in Canada. I travelled around the world with Goldirocks and my three hot producer gals – to Montreal, Cairo (yes we rode on a camel) and Brazil (yes we drank caipirinhas). You can read all about our debaucherous yet super-productive adventures at www.goldirocks.com.

In 2005 I moved to Los Angeles from Toronto and started writing screenplays like my life depended on it (oh wait, my life did depend on it) and I now have several brilliant scripts, some in bona fide stages of development.

My big recent news is that I have a brand spanking new book agent for my romance novel – very excited about that. I’m also pitching a children’s book, which I think all writer’s who have kids do at one point or another. I sing and play guitar and drums – you can read about my former bands on my site.

I’ve been honored lately to sing on my husband’s fan-fucking-tastic record which you can listen to on my site. We have a toddler daughter who likes to test our nerves all day every day in various ways, like all perfect geniuses. What else can I say? Read my blog.

You can e-mail me at paula<at>goldirocks.com if you are missing any vital information.