Archives: anthology

Dancing With Myself Release: “The Solution”

Today is the release date for Dancing With Myself, an anthology of self-love erotica. What a beautiful phrase–“self-love.” In all it senses. Interestingly, one might argue that the protagonist of my piece in this anthology, “The Solution,” doesn’t have a lot of reason to love herself.

“The Solution” is a story that’s been on my mind for a while. Even with this, it’s still not fully purged; I suspect it’s one of those beasties that might turn into a novel one day. I starting writing it when I was reflecting on how several of my favorite erotic novels–everything from Megan Hart’s Tear You Apart to  Kate Chopin’s The Awakening–center around adultery.

What’s up with that?

I’ve got theories: not the lies, but the secrecy certainly touches on something in me, and I’ve always been personally a bit skeptical of monogamy. It’s definitely something more fun to read and write about than to do, but there is that fascination that always surrounds people behaving badly.

 

I wondered if Dom had ever worried about me, all the nights I’d been out late. Maybe he’d been glad to have his space, just as I was glad to have mine on those evenings he claimed to have meetings or buddies waiting for him at some bar. Once I figured out where he’d really been going, I claimed more than space. I took pleasure, I took control. That was what it felt like at the time, at least.

The story centers, then, around that headspace–the thrill of doing what you know is wrong, but feeling justified in it anyway. A place where selfishness isn’t quite the same as self-love. But it’s as much about the other people involved in these brief-lived affairs, some of them one or two-night infidelities:

Dirty, he’d called me when I showed him how to get me off. I’d grabbed his hand and guided it to where mine now was, riding his fingers and rutting against his palm. His wrist had twisted in my grip and he’d panted about my perversity. I’m not sure which part he found so perverse. When I’d gone further, grasping his cock to control how it slid inside me, he’d been able to say nothing at all. Had that been worth violating my marriage vows for? That, and Heather, and Claire and Matt, and Joshua’s lips wrapping around my nipples as his fingers cupped and kneaded my ass, and Scott’s grin as he followed me down the dim corridor…

It’s a story about memory, and having it all at once, and having none of it, and learning how to love yourself once again. After all, you’re the one person you have no choice but to be faithful to.

 

Dancing With Myself is available on Amazon and Smashwords. More updates will be added to “The Solution’s” story page as they come.

 

 

A Big Book Release

2018 is off to a great start in terms of gigantic book releases…

The one I want to point you to today is the Big Book of Submission Vol 2’s paperback release (on Barnes & Noble and Amazon)!

While each story is under 1,200 words, 69 of them add up to quite the package.

Speaking of kinky flash fiction and/or insights into power–weren’t we?–I also have a short but sweet piece up at Bare Back magazine:

I’ve always wanted to feel power. The thing itself, not its effects or trappings. The effects aren’t bad; like hell I’m going to protest getting what I want. But they’re not exactly what I want, if that makes sense. I don’t care so much about the symptoms, but I want the disease.
Power is a disease, as you always bring up at some point in our political-philosophical-spiritual conversations. I nod along to your sermon, which I do agree with. Power is killing the world with deaths of a thousand cuts, exploitation, extraction. But that’s not what I’m talking about when I talk about the power I want.
It’s not in the slinky black PVC dress, though it looks great on the model online, and neither is it in the fishnets barely visible under my thigh-high leather boots. The netting imprints a pattern on my skin for the rest of the night. I love how the boots gleam and hug my calves, but those heels—“Shouldn’t you be the one in a torture device?” I ask.
You’ve marched and signed petitions against torture, the real kind I mean, but our conversations never get lost in that particular labyrinth. It makes so much difference when it’s consensual that it takes an effort to connect the two meanings of the word. Also, you don’t preach half as much when we’re playing—fucking with power.
Your hands rub my aches away. There’s a special energy in that, in your hands moving warm and firm over my heels, my ankles, up to my diamond-stamped thighs. Your touch somehow reaches into my flesh, soothing and exciting at once, and all at my command.
Still, this was just costuming. Turning me into someone else, or at least the imitation of her. It can make me feel freer or more obvious, but it’s not a source of true power. True power I’ll be able to feel in complete nakedness. True power I keep searching for, and you let me mark and bind your flesh into a map.

I’ll have more fresh updates in the next week–the next episode of the Smutty Storytelling podcast, in which Betina Cipher and I discuss erotic genres and ‘sex languages”; and a unique story in the Dancing With Myself anthology of “self-love” erotica!

Book sale alert: Red Velvet and Absinthe

Book alert: the Red Velvet and Absinthe anthology is currently on sale at 10% of its original price (99 cents instead of $9.99)!

This anthology of Gothic erotic fiction is quite possibly the best book of erotica I’ve ever read. I’m not in it, but you might say it’s in me. Every piece is lush and dazzling, with a diversity of orientations, kinks, and dynamics between couples. Some stories lean more toward romance, some toward horror, some toward pure smut. There are classics like vampires and werewolves (reimagined in interesting new ways) and some stranger encounters with enchanted–or haunted–paintings, a hangman, and a dom who might be the Green Fairy herself.

Haunted is now out!

Haunted, Mofo Pubs’ latest volume of literary erotica, is out today–just in time for Halloween! Treat yourself to the eerie, sexy, chilling and thrilling:

 

A young man feels a peculiar hunger to be loved, one he can’t survive without sating in a series of vivid homoerotic dreams that blur the boundaries of fantasy and fact, desire and love. 

A hesitant dominant struggling with a recent breakup and the loss of her grandmother, finds a mysterious man in her living room with her grandmother’s rosary and an appetite for submission.

Years after a summer romance with a young male model, a woman finds herself driven to search through online porn for photos and videos that might feature him.

A man is tormented by the erotic demands of his soulmate—with whom he shares an intimacy so deep they can literally hear one another’s thoughts. 

A British soldier is haunted by memories of his lost lover and comrade in arms. 

A grieving woman moves into a basement apartment, which she discovers already has a resident.

 

 

Last week I wrote about music for making love to ghosts, and if that’s your thing, good news: Mofo editor Parker Marlo has put together her own playlist for this anthology.  Check it out on Spotify.

 

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

 

Get all the stories in Haunted:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

 

Music for making love to ghosts

A Walt Whitman poem says, “And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.”

I’ve always misheard that as “To die is luckier than any of us know, and stranger.

Because how could it not be?

I don’t pretend to have any insight into what an actual afterlife might be like, but when I’m writing ghosts, I try to keep its potential strangeness in mind. Not in a bad way, necessarily; it could be a lucky and fortunate strangeness. But I’m pretty sure sex with ghosts would be something very different from sex with human beings. A matter of odd geometries and invisible contours, the texture and taste of a non-biological intimacy. It would have to be at least a little scary, and probably wistful too.

A song that perfectly captures this mixture of whimsy and weirdness–incidentally, the perfect soundtrack to Bodies of Ghosts, even though it wasn’t released until after I had completed and submitted the story to Mofo–is Seeming’s “Phantom Limb”:

 

Incidentally, Seeming also has a song called “Stranger” that makes the process of becoming different sound pretty lucky (though it’s much more about life than death). And at times weirdly, wonderfully erotic.

And if you’re looking for inspiration for Mofo’s current call, Apocalypse (how would you fuck if the world was ending?), you might want to check out “Goodnight London.”

 

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

 

Get Haunted:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

 

Haunted: Free Fiction

Mofo Publishing’s fourth anthology is Haunted—a literary erotica anthology exploring the erotic charge of that which is persistently there. Tales of ghosts, memory, obsession.

A young man feels a peculiar hunger to be loved, one he can’t survive without sating in a series of vivid homoerotic dreams that blur the boundaries of fantasy and fact, desire and love.

A hesitant dominant struggling with a recent breakup and the loss of her grandmother, finds a mysterious man in her living room with her grandmother’s rosary and an appetite for submission.

Years after a summer romance with a young male model, a woman finds herself driven to search through online porn for photos and videos that might feature him.

A man is tormented by the erotic demands of his soulmate—with whom he shares an intimacy so deep they can literally hear one another’s thoughts.

A British soldier is haunted by memories of his lost lover and comrade in arms.

A grieving woman moves into a basement apartment, which she discovers already has a resident.

That last story is mine–and it’s available to read free, right now, as a MoFo erotic short.

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

Become Haunted:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

New Release: “My Body is a Haunted House” in MoFo Pub’s HOTEL

Click “Continue Reading” for an excerpt from the opening scene of “My Body is a Haunted House”

The stories in this anthology explore what happens in those most impersonal of private spaces—hotels.

Hotel. The very word conjures a sense of transience. Hotel takes you into a world without permanence. Between these pages, lovers meet and lovers part. Elegant, sensual prose takes you from grand ballrooms with lavish appointments to shabby heaps where you pay by the hour.

Sneak a titillating glimpse behind closed doors, where whatever can happen just might.

Transience, transgression, and transformation seem to be the order of the day–or night–in this anthology. My story, “My Body is a Haunted House,” links two women together at an occasion of transformation: their (ex-)husband’s funeral.

Continue reading

Upcoming stories

My cup overfloweth. Contracts are signed, edits are underway, and I just discovered that I’ll be sharing the tables of contents in two upcoming anthologies with some very excellent people.

Your cup might overflow as well, dear reader, because in each of these anthologies I have two stories.

In MoFo’s third anthology, Religion (originally Sacrilege), my stories are kind of different from each other, but between them cover plenty of my Roman Catholic influences.

“Deliver Us” is about what happens when you get exposed to bondage through B-movies about exorcisms, and your girlfriend is an ex-Catholic who once wanted to be a priest.

(When your boyfriend did become a priest and you want to rescue him from his decision, you get A Last Touch of Grace. Comparing that story in 2016 to these stories in 2017 probably reveals something interesting about my spiritual journey.)

“Annunciation” is a semi-autobiographical novella in flash about growing up queer in the Catholic Church. Novella in flash might be a slight exaggeration, but I’ve recently fallen in love with the form and its cousins after reading Sylvia Brownrigg’s Pages for Youeven if I didn’t manage a “true” novella of the appropriate length and independence of the composite flash pieces, it was fun experiment. The format might also be influenced by the 5 + 1 fanfiction genre, in which case we have “Five times I* believed lies the Church told me about gender and sexuality and one time I figured it out,” I guess, or maybe “Five times I really missed the fact that I was queer and the realization(s) that put me right.” Not only was “Annunciation” fascinating to write (I said these stories “covered a lot of my Roman Catholic influences,” but what I learned most is how much is left to uncover), I also got a little angry. In “Deliver Us,” too. That seemed to fit MoFo’s call, which includes “a preference for Catholicism—the eroticism and hypocrisy are built right in.”

The narrator of “Annunciation” first identifies the androgynously-illustrated Gabriel as female, “So to me, the Annunciation was always a matter of two women together in a bedroom. “

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Embodied Hauntings–“The Bitterness of Flesh”

Continuing on my themes from the last week’s posts–hauntings, and also recent releases that didn’t get proper blog posts because my website was down at the time they came out.

“Would you like to see Cleo?”

This time the blush flamed to the surface of her skin, and the chill dove deeper, towards her heart. “I… Can I?”

Robert Fitzwilliam held out his hand. “There’s a statue of her down the hall.”

A statue. Of course. Had she been expecting a ghost? She pressed her palm to his again, felt long fingers close around it, followed the draw of his arm. The thick carpet drank in their footsteps.

“The Bitterness of Flesh” came out in Ever Dream of Mean anthology from Fantasia Divinity Magazine. It was inspired by two things: the Year’s Best Food Writing anthologies from Holly Hughes, and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. Of course, I was reading those at the same time, which is one of the best ways to cross wires for creative sparks.

Plot-wise, the story is not about a chef: I’m more interested in eating scrumptious delicacies than preparing them, so the Food Writing inspired me to notice and incorporate sensual details–and also an heirloom apple orchard. Honestly, I’m surprised there isn’t more writing out there combining culinary and erotic appetites, although Gael Green’s Insatiable and Ashley Warlick’s The Arrangement are both on my bookshelves (I hadn’t realized M.F.K. Fisher had a love triangle under her belt along with all those European meals!).

The core of the story is about a second wife, and also, of course, about the first one. I adore Gothic novels, but the atmosphere of “Bitterness” is a little lighter than most Gothics–more bittersweet than venomous. Its partial inspiration, Rebecca, is a book about jealousy and fear, love and obsession. And when the heroine gets that obsessed with Rebecca (aided not least by the tour Mrs. Danvers gives of the shrine made from Rebecca’s bedroom), it becomes almost–with more or less “almost” about it–sexual.

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“She knew what he’d brought”: Updates 4/19/17

The paperback of MoFo Pub’s Wanderlust anthology is now available from Amazon. That gorgeous cover will look great on your shelves (something about photography and hot pink lettering does things to me, okay?) and even better open in your lap. While you read it. Which you’ll thank yourself for.

This is the one featuring my story “Soft, Rough.”

But the MoFo goodness doesn’t stop there. “My Body is a Haunted House”–an f/f story that takes its title from C.S. Lewis, yes really–will be one of the stories in Hotel, the second volume of the Mofo Pubs Presents series. The ebook is currently available for preorder before its June 25th release.

If reading these stories gets your imagination going, MoFo has two current calls for submissions: Religion, closing April 30, and Haunted, closing August 5. Speaking, I guess, of C.S. Lewis and haunted houses (okay, I modified his quote–originally in A Grief  Observed, he compared his body to an empty house. The larger point stands. The larger point being that grief is a bodily experience as much as an emotional one, and also I hold nothing sacred).