August 31, 2010

Drabble #93

Prompt: Author's Choice
Inspiration: Joseph West

The open road is beautiful from a car, but even more so when you’re flat on the pavement. Come here at the right time of day, and you’ll be safe. Even if a car comes along, you’ll hear it with plenty of time to get out of the way. It’s worth the slight risk of auto accident, to feel your back against the hot asphalt, to feel the sunburn gradually forming as you stare up into the cloudless blue Texas summer sky. Nothing makes you feel smaller or more free. Nothing leaves you with such an overwhelming sense of possibility.

August 30, 2010

Drabble #92

Prompt: Author's Choice
Inspiration from Andrew Baron

When we dance, it’s not about precision. It’s about the sun, the ferociously beautiful summer heat, the joy of skin and sweat and movement. It’s about jumping for the sake of jumping, music for the sake of sound. When we dance, it’s about communal celebration of our city, our lives, our selves. We dance because we live, because there is nothing for us beyond aesthetic kinesthetics. Because every breath is given as part of the journey to find the connection of body and soul. Because this is when we are complete, when the mind works in tandem with the flesh.

ArmadilloCon Reflection

I spent Friday and Saturday of the past weekend at ArmadilloCon, a science fiction/fantasy writer's convention held in Austin. I'd never been to a writer's conference or convention before, and this was a fun first experience. I was a little reluctant to attend at first, as I don't actually write sci-fi or fantasy (though I LOVE good science fiction and have an entire bookshelf devoted to Ray Bradbury), but a few of my (both writer and non-writer) friends were going, and another friend of mine was actually a panelist, so I figured it would at least be a chance to hang out with people and support my friends.

Though attending a conference outside of my writing genre, I actually found plenty of useful panels. Every writer can benefit from attending sessions on working with small presses or doing research. There was even a panel on writing outside your genre! But I think I benefited most from attending panels that seemed to have little relevance to my own career. On Friday night, I attended the panel on alternate histories - something that doesn't seem at all useful to what I do. But it was an engaging and fun session, I took tons of notes, and by Saturday morning, I had developed the seed of an idea that I'll be writing during National Novel Writing Month this year. It's too new for me to want to talk about it yet, but it will be an alternate history, and though I'm kind of scared to embark on this new adventure, I'm excited, too. I stayed up late Saturday night compiling a reading list for research, and I've gotten started on it already.

And of course, I spent way too much money in the dealer room. Between buying books and winning a piece in the art auction, I blew my budget a bit. The art piece was actually not that expensive, but when you're buying a large quantity of otherwise-inexpensive things, that adds up. At least the auction was for charity - that ameliorates some of the guilt.

August 29, 2010

Drabble #91

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: New Orleans

She loves Bourbon Street at 2:30 in the afternoon on Tuesday, free to walk the streets with an open container, to be drunk at an hour when the rest of the world works, tends to children, or begs the tourists for change. When she’s here, this drunk, she loses her fear, gives the homeless people lucky days. At night, it’s a different story. She sobers up too quickly in the dull roar of the neon sprawling party. She’s conscious of the foul odors, the sweaty bodies, the well-off men who feel entitled to her. Afraid, she goes home early.

August 28, 2010

Drabble #90

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

Mortality is one of the things that gives me hope. I never want to live forever; eternity is nauseating. I like knowing that someday, none of this will matter; sooner or later, I won't have to have to deal with anyone. I like knowing that someday, I won't have to think or feel, won't have to decide, I'll simply lose consciousness for good, cease to exist. I like clear-cut endings, which is why I resist the possibility of life after death. It's terrifying to think even of paradise, of having to go on once I'm fed up with the world.

August 27, 2010

Drabble #89

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

I could have died in March, and if I had, at least those 25 years would have been enough. I'm grateful for each day that I've survived the crash, but at least if I'd gone then, I would have done so without fear or regret. The greatest lesson I ever learned was to not be afraid of the end, because even the best books have their final chapters. I learned that the day I learned to read: all stories have their conclusions. And mine might have been short, but Hemingway could tell one in just six words.

August 26, 2010

Drabble #88

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

What does it matter whether I’m a man or a woman, that I might be both or neither? We all sweat, and you love the way I smell, the way my skin tastes. We all have hands, and I’m using them to make you come before we even get to whatever is between my legs. We still have mouths, lips, tongues, teeth, and I have yet to find a way to use them that you don’t like. So it doesn’t matter what I am or am not at the moment; I still fuck you just the way you love it.

August 25, 2010

Drabble #87

Prompt: Author's Choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

“Love is like a kitten. Feisty and stupid and oh my gosh awesome and you want like six more when that one gets old.” But you don’t want any more when that one dies. The other attachments you’ve formed flounder in your self-pity. You feel lucky for all the others not in your care, for they would suffer under your mournful neglect. You’re incapable of nurturing anything; handling yourself is enough work already. But you know one will fall into your lap, sooner or later, and if you are lucky you will love it as fiercely as the last one.

August 24, 2010

New Literotica Contest

The Literotica 2010 Summer Lovin' Erotic Story Contest is up! You can find my story here.

What I love about the Literotica contests is that you don't just have to vote for your favorite story; you can rank them all. I like that I don't have to feel compelled to vote for one, but can rather rate and comment on all the pieces I read. Definitely a lot of fun.

Confession Tuesday

I confess that one month post-breakup, I have not moved on as fast as I'd like, and I'm frustrated. I realize that you can't rush these things, that you have to let them heal on their own. I realize that I'm doing the best I can, that I'm doing healthy things to move on, but even so, I'm irritated that this isn't easier. Though I suppose if it were easier, the relationship wouldn't have meant so much to me.

I confess that even though I still struggle, it is refreshing to be diving back into projects and making to-do lists again.

I confess that there has been a great deal of progress in my writing life. Last week, a story idea came to me in a dream. By the time I woke up, I'd lost the dialogue and the twist ending, but at least my brain still retained the structure. This is the first non-erotic story idea I've had since I started writing (in fact, the piece borders on horror), and it's a little intimidating to be writing something outside my comfort zone. But I'm approaching this challenge wholeheartedly. I also finished the second draft of a novella-length work, and have an essay in development. Not many submissions lately, but a lot of new creations and revisions.

I confess that I've loved having days with nothing to do but work on fiction, but some freelance work has come my way and I'm grateful. I love my creative work, but I also love eating.

I confess that I hope I don't get selected as a juror. I have freelancing to do! I have stories that are in development and need attention! I don't have time for civic duty!

Drabble #86

Prompt: Author's Choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

The 31-year-old man dies in his sleep one night for no apparent reason. A healthy athlete drowns. We’re rarely taken from each other at convenient moments. But even when you try to control your death, there’s not much to rationalize. You can’t possibly believe you’re not going to hurt anyone when you go. The pain in your own life might end, but the world will continue in its cold way. Life, like death devoid of meaning, will go on without you. It’s best to live as well as possible, make your own meaning, tell the irreverent universe to piss off.

August 23, 2010

Meet the Lusty Literati Reading Series Readers!

I'm thrilled to announce the first round of readers for the Lusty Literati Reading Series. Check out their bios below!

Liz Belile
Liz Belile created the popular "Gynomite: Fearless, Feminist Porn" reading series while living in Los Angeles in 1994, which led to a CD anthology and documentary film. She ended up back home in Texas in 1997, where the series continued to gather accolades and led to her "Breaking the Cherry" porn writing and performance workshop for women, which she has taught since 1999. Belile edited the "Gynomite" anthology in 2000 and took a handful of feminist pornographers on the road for book tour around the country. She got married then had a baby in 2007, and has entered a new level of understanding of the erotic.

Reesa Brown
Reesa Brown is a writer of fantasy, science fiction, queer-themed stories, horror, occasional erotica, and whatever else she can think up. She lives just north of Austin, TX with her quirky family and small menagerie, and can be most easily found on the internet at

Buio Davinci
I'm a tech yuppie with pretentions of horniness, and have been a member in unsure standing of the Voluptuaries for about three years. I recently quite my cubefarm career of ten years, and will be earning
part of my income through erotic writing, photography, and theater. I'm polyamorous and currently involved with about 5 different lovers local and distant, and that's likely to be a focus of my work.

C. C. Major
I've been writing since I was 11, when puberty turned my world upside down and I discovered how fruitless pining was useless unless it gave birth to a work of art. A diary was my only audience for years until blogging became popular, and I was intrigued with stories about kink. I've written mainly fiction, inspired by my dreams or whatever emotion or question was pinging at my heart and head; I've done a couple of opinion pieces, a few poems, and erotica, into which I like to mix comedy.

Paige Roberts
Paige E. Roberts has published a variety of sexy stories in the US and UK on the fringes of reality and beyond: fantasy, science fiction, superhero, vampire, and shape-shifter, with D/s, SM, GLBT, BDSM, and other alphabet soup elements. She lives in Round Rock with her husband and two kids and is active in the local kink community, co-founder of the Voyagers group.
Bare Throat, Naked Hunger,” her anthology of erotic vampire stories was recently re-released with a new cover, and is available in e-book or print from , Amazon, or Fictionwise. Her sci fi interrogation scene story, “Caught,” is in the new “Best Erotic Fantasy and Science Fiction” anthology from Circlet Press.

Gwen Way
Gwen Way began her erotic writing career in 2006, when she took Liz Belie's “Breaking the Cherry” erotic writing course. Creative with movement as well as words, Gwen also performs as a principal dancer with the Body Positive Dance Company ( She recently completed her bachelor's degree in forensic psychology, and currently makes her home in Cedar Park.

Smut Marathon Update

The results from Smut Marathon Round 4 were published on Friday (I know, I know, I have been a lazy blogger). t'Sade's "Customer Service" won, and I was really excited to see that her story was the one that finished first. The piece made me laugh, which is so rare for erotic fiction. She definitely deserved first place.

I finished toward the lower-middle of the pack, about where I expected after seeing all the other stories. I struggled a bit with this prompt, though it was quite fun, and I enjoyed the somewhat whimsical nature of my story.

The theme for Round 5 is "Mystery," and I'd better get a jump on it. The story is due when I'll be out of town camping, so I have to finish early!

Fast Girls!

Welcome to my regular readers, and to new faces stopping by for this portion of the Fast Girls book tour.

When I was growing up, I was taught that being a "fast" girl was bad. I got that from my parents. I got it from a moralizing sex ed teachers. I got it from slut-shaming classmates who belittled girls for reportedly sleeping around. This, along with a number of other factors, contributed to fear, which led to a delayed development of my sexual identity. Part of me wanted to be a fast girl. Deep down, I knew that's who I was. But part of my was also unwilling to admit to this part of my identity.

When I was 21, I was fresh out of a bad (and boring!) relationship, and just starting to kindle the sparks with the man I would eventually marry. On our first official date, I knew he wanted to have sex - but I refused to go that far, even though I desperately wanted to as well. Every time I thought about taking my pants off, all I could think about was that if I did, it might make me a slut, and being a slut was bad - even after three years of college, I hadn't gotten that idea out of my head. So even though I wanted him, I waited. I made the both of us wait three weeks before I finally felt that we could fuck without me being considered "easy." Now, some people might enjoy the wait, but it was agony for both of us, especially me. I hated that doing what I felt I was supposed to do was getting in the way of the sexual and emotional connection I was developing with my boyfriend.

Four years later, I was married, and my now-husband and I were in the beginning of not just marriage, but also polyamory. I went on a first date for the first time since I met my husband. I'd met my date online and was so nervous that I got lost driving to a restaurant half a mile from my then-office. At dinner, we really hit it off. At the coffee shop, we hit it off even more. Then, he asked me back to his place. Those long-latent admonitions about being a slut, about being fast, suddenly sprung back to life. I decided to ignore them and accept his invitation. But once I actually got to his place, I panicked. While using the bathroom, I texted my husband and asked him to call my phone at a predetermined time so I could have an easy way out. Still, I was determined to overcome my fears. My date and I shared an awkward first kiss, but even awkward, it was still delicious, and soon we were making out. But I couldn't relax, I couldn't shake the fears of being easy. Somehow, it was fine if my husband and I were nonmonogamous, but it was still not okay for me to have sex with people on the first date. So when my husband called, I answered it, pretended there was an emergency, and despite the wonderful night, hoped he wouldn't call again so I wouldn't have to deal with the embarrassment of running out on him.

The resolution to that story is that he did call again, and I deferred on calling him back out of fear and embarrassment, but eventually I faced my fears and, before we even scheduled a second date, I asked for a lunch-hour bootycall and had what is still, and probably always will be, one of my top-five best sexual experiences. That afternoon proved to be a turning point. I had beautiful sex with a beautiful partner, someone I still hardly knew, and nothing horrible happened. In fact, my life only got better. That afternoon was crucial for me in shaking off what I thought it meant to be fast.

Reading Fast Girls was a fun experience, particularly because it's been only a year and a half since that booty call, and it's been interesting to reflect on how much I've changed as I read this. I see missed opportunities that I wish I'd taken advantage of when I had the chance, and wonder if I can make these fantasies realties anyway. Saskia Walter's "Communal," about sex in a dorm shower, brings back memories of wanting to fuck in my dorm showers, but never having the courage to do so. But despite the fact that I'm 4 years out of college, I'm now toying with the ways I can bring this long-lost fantasy back to life.

I see in these stories gradual developments in my sexual identity. Lolita Lopez's "Fireworks" brings back memories of when I finally put my fears aside and fulfilled my desire to have sex outdoors. Suzanne V. Slate's "Panther" was doubly delicious as I recalled my own initial experiments with public displays of sexuality.

And in one of these stories, I see a reflection of myself. Cherry Bomb's "That Girl" blew me away not just because of its emotional intensity or its hot sex, but because I could related to the narrator so well. As I experimented with my hurried sexuality, I discovered the extent to which deep emotions, and often love, were inextricably linked to sex. Like the narrator, I'm "emotionally reckless"; like the narrator, I don't just want sex, I want the whole package of emotion that comes along with it. I fall in love to fast, I fall in love when I'm not supposed to, I make messes and push emotional boundaries in my quest for connection. When I want someone, I want their body and their heart at the same time. Or, as the narrator says: "I am excruciatingly devoted; if you let me in, my heart will never let you go, and all I want is everything."

When you grow up with a definition of a "fast girl" which (in addition to being negative), portrays fast people as those wanting sex devoid of emotion, it's difficult to reconcile the fact that you want to be a fast girl and yet you are deeply emotional. As you begin to grow into your fast girl identity, the majority of images and stories you confront are still about women who want sex without emotion. When I have seen portrayals of fast women having emotional sex, it's typically in the context of established relationships; these stories demonstrate that being fast isn't incompatible with long-term partnerings. But I rarely see stories about women like me, who get into bed and then give everything right then and there. I was thrilled to find myself in these pages, even in a fictional representation.

Sometimes, the fastness that Cherry Bomb writes about and I experience makes things complicated, messy, and confused. But that hasn't stopped me from being fast. This is who I am, and I won't apologize for my sexuality, or for the emotions that come with them.

Fast Girls is available for purchase on Amazon, as well as independent bookstores in your area. For more information, check out the Fast Girls blog.

Drabble #85

Prompt: Author's Choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

Even slowing down doesn’t work. I thought iif I just paced myself, this would go away, I would feel better. But living slowly doesn’t work. If I go too fast, I start to burn up. If I go to slow, I get bored, I feel like I’ve lost my essence, I don’t see the pint in going on if I’m not racing through life at a million miles an hour. I either go on feeling like this forever, or I stop completely. I either keep going on, perpetually unsatisfied, or I quit. But I make the same choice every day.

August 22, 2010

Drabble #84

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

We’re never safe. I don’t just mean terrorists, muggers, drunk drivers. I mean infidelity, unrequited love, broken hearts. I mean that sometimes, we’re not safe from ourselves. I don’t see the point in living in fear of hijackers when the people who have done the most damage to me are the ones I know. I don’t see the point of fearing friends and lovers if fear means I never get to experience love before its inevitable loss. I learn to love myself to survive in the face of pain. (Besides, the indifference of nature will destroy us in the end.)

August 21, 2010

Drabble #83

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

I let my library books linger so long that the fines topped $100; I don’t read anymore. I let my medical bills go to collections. I never bothered getting those cavities filled. I started writing only unpublishable stories. I quit my job, I gave up my passion. I quit cooking, quit cleaning, developed a television addiction. I lost my ability to be alone. I stayed in therapy but I still don’t seem to be moving on, still seem stuck flat on the pavement. I don’t even care enough to reach out for help. I’m still here, but what’s the point?

August 20, 2010

Drabble #82

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

I’m such a perfectionist I’ll never be able to kill myself. I can’t leave before I’m sure everything in my life is up to my standards. I have to perfect my downward-facing dog. Make an omelet that doesn’t fall apart. Get my avocado tree to bear fruit. Win a prize for my writing. Find god. Swim in the Pacific Ocean. Fuck that guy from graduate school. Be honest with my mother. Make amends with my father. Host the perfect Thanksgiving dinner. Tell you I love you. Tell you I love you. Get one more tattoo. Tell you I love you.

August 19, 2010

Drabble #81

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

Hurt so bitter and so sweet, the best pain I’ve ever had. Like the majesty of a motor crash, where you hit the pavement and for a split second wonder if you’ll walk again, and then you do, because you have no choice but to keep going, even with the split lip and fractured tailbone. If you give into the pain you don’t survive, so you carry it with you; the load dissipates over time. At least there aren’t any scars with this one, just beautiful tattoos that I’ve selected to illustrate a history that everyone but us has forgotten.

August 18, 2010

Drabble #80

Prompt: Author's Choice
Inspiration: A Softer World

I can make a list of all the ways in which things are easier, create diagrams and spreadsheets that prove you right, but I never had the stomach for office work, logic, or proof. All I know is that I don’t sleep better after all, I’m am insomniac with or without you. I need to fill those too-dark too-early too-late hours with something to shake the side effects of permanent wakefulness. I set out in search of adventures, make intentional mistakes because there’s nothing wrong with learning a lesson twice, but I would rather be awake all night with you.

August 17, 2010

Drabble #79

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: Her Circle Ezine

It never failed to surprise her when new places looked like the old ones. Strip malls filled with the same chain restaurants and department stores, landscaping cultivated with an eye for the bland and placeless. The world was a blur of identical billboards and drive-thrus. She found you really needed to look to find the heart of a city. She became an anthropologist of the local, studying the quietly-kept souls of places. Fortunately, participant-observation was a viable option for fieldwork, because she couldn’t just sit on the sidelines while the locals came to play, came out to embody their home.

August 16, 2010

Smut Marathon Round 4 is Up!

Check it out! Smut Marathon Round 4 is now up and open for votes! You have until midnight Pacific time on August 20th to get your votes in. Enjoy!

Drabble #78

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: Her Circle Ezine

She rode her mother’s giant steel cruiser bike from 1975, and while she loved its bulk, its vintage feel, its inefficiency, she’d always lusted after the sleek, light, easy-to-use road bikes designed for commutes around the city. He’d promised she could have his bicycle when he moved, but that had been a year and a half ago, during better days, on better terms. She wondered if that promise was still valid. She wondered if he’d leave without saying goodbye. She wondered if she’d wake up one morning to find it on the porch, waiting for her, a silent parting gift.

August 15, 2010

Drabble #77

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration: Her Circle Ezine Weekly Writing Prompt

When she moved, she missed Ohio itself more than the people she left behind. You can’t write letters to geography, can’t call it on the phone. But the landscape was in her blood, and she ached for the first snowfall, for the turn and fall of leaves in autumn, for the magic of spring after a long winter. Still, after two years, the Texas hill country started seeping into her bones, and she realized that if she ever left this place, she would spend years pining for the baking heat, the summer-resistant washed-out shrubs, the undulating landscape, the cloudless sky.

August 14, 2010

Drabble #76

Prompt: Author's choice
Inspiration from the Her Circle Ezine Weekly Writing Prompt

Part of her wishes that this house would stay empty forever. That it would never fill up with the baggage of her past or the clutter of her present, that the future would always be this blank, expansive, and open. That when the time comes to leave (the time always comes to leave), she can just disappear, with no trace and nothing to pack. But she has no choice. Taking out the boxcutter, she rips open the brown packing tape and takes her life out, piece by piece, memory by memory, hoping that there will be room here for everything.

August 13, 2010

Drabble #75

Photo prompt: swimming

The bad grades, the shaved head, the tattoos, the piercings, the bisexuality - these disappoint her parents. But these rebellions are less frustrating than her inability to swim. They spent seven years and hundreds - probably thousands - of dollars on lessons, and she never progressed beyond the beginner level. She learned the strokes well enough, but hated the way they taught her to breathe; she refused. “It doesn’t feel good; I won’t do it.” They tried dozens of teachers, hoping each new one would somehow have the magic ability to make her learn. But their daughter is too stubborn.

August 12, 2010

Drabble #74

Photo prompt: sunbathing in snow

They’d saved for months for this Hawaii vacation. It was the middle of summer and should have been deliriously hot, a sexy, steamy paradise with an ocean available for cooling down. But there was an unprecedented snowstorm - and not just that, a snowstorm in August. The beach was covered with sugary snow rather than bleached sand.

Maya was undeterred. Grabbing a bucket lying around the beach house, she started digging. Liz had no choice but to join. After an hour of work, they were hot and sweaty. Maya spread out their towels, and they splayed out in the sun.

August 11, 2010

Review: Got a Minute? Edited by Alison Tyler

Got a Minute? 60 Second Erotica
Edited by Alison Tyler
Cleis Press, $14.95

Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested
- Sir Francis Bacon

When I was a kid, my mother had a bookmark with Bacon's quotation printed on it. As an avid reader, the phrase has always stayed with me. My mother fed me a steady diet of good books, my AP courses in high school had me exposed to the majority of the white male western canon, and my undergraduate and graduate literature programs allowed me to explore great works outside of the establishment. Even if I didn't always like what I read, I very rarely got the sense that I had been exposed to something only worth tasting. Almost everything I read was at least swallowable.

Then, a year out of graduate school, I began reading (and writing) erotica. With no parents, teachers, mentors, or well-read friends to act as a filter, I encountered a great deal of smut that was not even taste-worthy. Through trial, error, and the help of my local feminist bookstore, I eventually figured out which editors and writers I enjoyed, and used those guidelines to expand my reading selection. Still, as someone who had spent 25 years raised on a diet of Literature, I struggled to find erotic stories that I felt were really digestable - heck, I had a difficult time finding those I could really swallow. I read through collections and would remember very few details about stories or authors.

Then, I found a used copy of Herotica 3, and read "My Date With Marcie." This was exactly the kind of erotica I was looking for. It made me laugh, it made me cringe in just the right way (a story about high school students having sex would just not seem realistic without a cringe moment or two), and it turned me on. I imagine that, even in ten years, when people ask me about my favorite erotic story, I will still be saying "My Date With Marcie."

What I'm getting at with this lengthy introduction is that Got a Minute? is the kind of collection where you're going to digest all the stories. They're all short works (1,500 words max), but their brevity does not inhibit their sexual, emotional, or intellectual impact. When I look back at the end of 2010 and think of the most memorable stories I read this year, I have a feeling those at the top of the list are going to come from Got a Minute.

"Transformations," by Jen Cross, is a story that has been haunting me ever since I finished it. It's a lesbian love story with gender play and perhaps the only example of shapeshifting I've ever seen that has nothing to do whatsoever with the paranormal. It has a quality of magical realism about it, a quality that makes it really stand out as literary smut.

Andrea Dale's "From Bitter to Sweet" is snappy, sexy, and a little sarcastic - and the best piece of breakup erotica I have ever read. A little angry and very hot, Dale's smart narrator makes her way from a breakup to new love, and it's an edible journey the entire time (and exactly what I needed as I deal with my own emotional upheaval).

I could write a praise-filled blurb for every story in this collection, but there are 60-some stories in here, and I just don't have that kind of time. So in closing, I'll summarize the book this way: Got a Minute? is the most memorable collection I have ever read. There are straight, lesbian, and gay stories; there are vanilla and kink stories; there are stories that last only a paragraph and those that take a few pages. This book has the honor of being one of my favorite collections.

Drabble #73

Photo prompt: Shooting star

For some reason, she truly believed they were going stargazing. Her friends all took it to be a euphemism, an excuse to get away and have some sexy private time under the stars. But she was convinced he didn’t want her, that they were actually going to spend the night staring at the sky. So she was surprised when he spread out the blanket, set up the telescope, and then kissed her. At first she didn’t know what to do, but then her instincts kicked in, her animal nature shone forth as she moved her hands down inside his pants.

August 10, 2010

Drabble #72

Photo Prompt: Shell

They didn’t get up to the beach that often, but she was an indiscriminate collector, so she just grabbed whatever shells she found, not caring that they were tiny, or boring, or broken, or that she already had three of the same kind. She didn’t care about identifying the species that had once lived there, had no sense of aesthetics, just wanted a big box full of shells. She was so unpretentious about it that she was happy when her father ordered mussels at dinner and brought her back those hard, fragile casings to add to her increasingly erratic collection.

August 9, 2010

Drabble #71

Photo Prompt: Sandcastle

She never understands how other people’s sandcastles turn out perfect. She’s careful not to build too close to the water, to sculpt her design with cups and shovels. But hers always look juvenile, nothing like the ones in photographs. And when she tries to collaborate, it’s even worse - other kids just want to have fun, they don’t care that their work isn’t perfect, or whether the waves sweep it away before they’re done. Eventually, she gets so frustrated that she gives up on them entirely, spending her beach days with a trashy novel rather than playing in the sand.

August 8, 2010

New Erotica Venture:

I remember being really excited when I first learned about TingleMedia. It's a site where you can order erotic stories to be delivered in small chunks to your cell phone/mobile device. I think this is an absolutely fantastic idea, and I think it's going to take off. I have a freelance check coming in this week, and once I deposit it I'm going to buy some stories for some sexy reading on my phone!

One of my stories was put up for sale on the site on Tuesday, and I've been grinning about it all week. I always love participating in new ventures, and I'm honored to be a part of Tinglemedia's beginnings.

Drabble #70

Photo Prompt: Sailboat

She never realized how tiny those cabins could be, until he took her down below and snuggled her into the bunk. She didn’t know how they’d have room to move at all - fucking didn’t even seem possible. But he’s flexible and quick, and before she knows it her legs are in the air, feet bracing against the low ceiling. They’ve been flirting on the deck all afternoon and she’s already wet; he slides in easily and despite the cramped quarters, thrusts effortlessly. But they have to keep their voices down, mindful of the others up on the deck above.

Sunday Pleasures

It's been a rough two weeks, though I'm doing my best to stay positive, active, and keep working as I grieve the loss of a relationship. Things are getting better. Writing has been going slowly, and some days are more frustrating than others, but there have been many things in my life keeping me happy.

Last Sunday, a friend and I decided to get out of Austin and visit Krause Springs, about 40 miles outside the city. I wish I had known about this place when I first moved here! Nothing against the local swimming establishments, but Krause is absolutely adorable. We swam, we drank beer, we talked - it was a lovely afternoon. And before we left Austin, we got breakfast tacos at The Screaming Goat, which has the best tomatillo salsa I have ever tasted. I am still craving more of it a week later.

Furthering my quest for adventure, on Thursday, two friends and I went out to Fredericksburg. Well, first we drove out to Enchanted Rock and climbed it. In 100+ degree heat. And I'm on antibiotics for an infected cartilage piercing, so I had some issues with the sun. And we were all sore the next day. But the views were just spectacular. This is something I plan to do again when it's not quite so hot out. In town, we got some yummy German food, got to taste various delights at the Fredericksburg Winery, tasted as much as our stomachs could hold at Rustlin Rob's (where I spent way too much money on jalapeƱo peanut butter, beer jelly, red wine jelly, garlic and champagne mustard, and Scorned Woman hot sauce), and then rounded the afternoon off with beers at the Fredericksburg Brewing Company. We also stopped in at the Pioneer Memorial Library, which is a lovely building. We didn't have the time (or energy) to see everything we wanted, but the drive isn't terrible, so I know we'll be making excursions again.

Yesterday was a shopping excursion with another friend. I'm in the process of cleaning and rearranging my room, and decided I need a nice box for my sex toys. I found just the right box in the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store. It's just the right size. There are a few cracks, but nothing that can't be fixed with a little wood glue. It's also unfinished and unlined. An artist friend is going to paint it for me, and then I'm going to get some cool fabric and line it myself. I'm so excited! Also at the thrift store, I found a vinyl copy of The Sounds of Silence, in good condition, for a dollar. Squee! And I found a casserole dish that's part of the set I have that used to belong to my grandmother. I didn't need this particular size, but it was fifty cents and they don't make this set anymore, so I had to get it. Then we went to check out Ten Thousand Villages, where I got a bracelet and scoped out some candles I want to buy when my room is done - but only after my room is done. They're my reward for finishing this project!

I have a new favorite restaurant in Austin! Last night, my husband and I decided to try a restaurant we'd never been to before. We settled on Blue Dahlia Bistro, and it proved to be a great decision. My goat cheese tart was divine, and they have a great wine selection. I also appreciate that Blue Dahlia has a good mix of vegetarian and meat options. I feel like I can eat there frequently without getting bored. After dinner, we decided to go bowling at Highland Lanes. Although neither of us is an avid bowler, we both played better than we ever have. Perhaps all that Wii Bowling is actually helpful.

Today we'll have brunch at El Arroyo, and hopefully I'll have time to visit a friend before going to see 8: The Mormon Proposition. This evening, my husband is off with his new girlfriend and I am looking forward to a free evening. Maybe I'll get some writing done. Maybe I'll go dancing. Who knows?

August 7, 2010

Drabble #69

Photo prompt: Return to sender

He never considers it his fault. Even after every ignored text message, after every phone call forwarded to voicemail, after every unopened letter returned. After every email gets an automatic response that she programmed to send to anything from his email address: “I told you never to contact me again.” It’s always her bad attitude, her problem, her issues she needs to work out. She’s ungrateful, never appreciated what he gave her. Never once does he consider that he shouldn’t have walked out. Never once this does he ever consider he should have been a better father to his daughter.

August 6, 2010

Drabble #68

Photo prompt: jumping off a pier

It seemed that no matter where their lives took them, or what paths they chose, no matter how out of touch they fell, they would always wind up in this same town during the same week every summer.

One year, after a particularly large distance had spread between them due to careers and thousands of miles, they were swimming as though nothing had changed. And then he held her around the waist, kissed her neck, slid his fingers inside her bikini bottoms. She felt him go hard against her back. After all this time and separation, they finally came together.

August 5, 2010

Drabble #67

Photo prompt: palm tree

December 30th. The plane lands in Austin and Amanda can only begin to imagine what the coming year will bring. Jess is waiting at baggage claim, they step out into the warm December, and Amanda sees her first palm trees lining the shuttle route. On the cab ride to the apartment Amanda cranes her neck, taking in every non-midwestern feature. After a rest, they head to South Congress. She looks to her right and sees more palm trees, an expanse of road, and the Capitol Building at the end. Little does she know how far this road will take her.

August 4, 2010

Drabble #66

Photo prompt: red balloon

When she was born, her parents gave her a balloon-themed room. Balloon wallpaper, sheets, blankets, lampshades. And there were balloon bouquets at every birthday, every celebration. Now, she suspects maybe it was childhood overstimulation that caused her to hate balloons today. She can’t even remember a time when they made her happy. Instead, she dislikes them for the same reason she dislikes flowers: they always wilt and wither away. They remind her that so few things survive. There are enough things in her life that die, fade, wilt, or disappear. She finds joy in what little permanence she can grasp.

August 3, 2010

Drabble #65

Photo prompt: Life Preserver

At the lake, everyone swam out to the buoys, leaving her behind. She’d never learned how to do anything but dog-paddle, and was always too nervous to float. So not only was she slower than everyone else, but she had to lug her giant inner-tube out with her. By the time she met up with her friends, they were already halfway into a conversation or a game. Sometimes it occurred to her to ask someone to pull her out, but she was much too stubborn about her independence. It was less embarrassing to deal with her lack of ability alone.

August 2, 2010

Book Review: Alison's Wonderland, edited by Alison Tyler

Alison's Wonderland edited by Alison Tyler
Spice Books, $13..95

Alison's Wonderland, an erotic collection based on fairy tales and myths, has officially earned a spot on my list of favorite erotica anthologies. In fact, this book is one of the few erotica works I own that has managed to keep me hot story after story.

When I think of my favorite collections, the best are those that are diverse - many different sexualities, the inclusion of both kinky and vanilla pieces, and in particular, the ways in which the stories reflect the theme in different ways. Alison Tyler has created a collection in which such variety exists. While I would have liked to have seen a few more gay/lesbian pieces, Ms. Tyler does showcase threesomes that require characters to slide along their Kinsey scales. We also get a good blend of kink and vanilla, showcasing both the sweet and sadistic side of things.

Best of all, these stories interpret the theme of fairy tales in delightfully different ways. Some, such as Janine Ashbless' "Gold on Snow" and Georgia E. Jones' "The Walking Wheel" are true fairy tales, with more sex thrown in. Most of these stories take fairly tale themes and adapt them to contemporary settings and situations. "The Three Billys" by Sommer Marsden and "The Midas F*ck" by Erica DeQuaya are particularly excellent examples of these. And some stories simply take the supernatural/fantastic elements of fairy tales without creating a direct analog from old stories to present ones. Bryn Haniver's "Mastering Their Dungeons" and A. D. R. Forte's "Moonset" are my favorite examples of these.

I always try to come up with some constructive criticism when doing a book review, but I'm hard pressed to think of something I didn't like about Alison's Wonderland. This collection is impeccably selected and edited. Two days after finishing the book, the only real criticism I have is that in "A Taste for Treasure," T.C. Calligari has a character who goes by the name of "Jimbo." And when the only complaint I have is with a character's name, that really isn't much at all.


Drabble #64

Photo Prompt: Glass of iced tea

The gallon jug of cold-brewed iced tea was sweating on the countertop. Jack had a pot of red beans and rice and a pot of jambalaya going at the same time. Ashley pulled the fresh French bread out of the oven and set it on a rack to cool. The sink was full of shrimp tales and sausage casings. The doorbell rang, and Ashley went to greet the first group of guests while Jack started frying up greens.

Thank god the tea is unsweetened, she thought, as she went to the door. Otherwise, people might think I’d become a southerner.

August 1, 2010

Drabble #62

Photo prompt: Dropped ice cream cone

She swears the gulls are staring at her.

“Damn creepy birds,” she mutters, taking a bite of ice cream.

Then she’s convinced they’re following her. Her friends would shake their heads, say she’s paranoid. But as she glances over her shoulder, she realizes they are following her. And they’re getting closer. She breaks into a run, but they speed up as well. When she sees a few lift up into flight over her head, she panics. She tosses her ice cream cone over her shoulder in hopes of either taking one out or distracting them as she makes her escape.