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Posts Tagged ‘Jacqueline applebee’

The Telling of Tales: D.L. King and Friends Read to Me

Ever since Wednesday night’s readings at Sh! with D. L. King and friends, I’ve been thinking about the power of reading stories to each other. I was there to read a bit from one of my own stories, but more importantly I was there to sit back in a roomful of enthralled people and just listen to some of the wonderful authors who have stories in anthologies edited by D. L. King. I couldn’t have asked for more wonderful story-tellers:

Jacqueline Applebee (Where the Girls Are)

Janine Ashbless (Carnal Machines)
Jacqueline Brocker (Under Her Thumb)
Ciara Finn (The Sweetest Kiss)
K. D. Grace (Voyeur Eyes Only)
Remittance Girl (The Sweetest Kiss)
NJ Streitberger (Seductress)

The stories ranged from fem dom to vampire to steam punk. There was even a bit of mythology and voyeurism thrown in for good measure. It was a tremendous pleasure to see D.L. King again, and I felt very honoured to be included to read with some of my heroes in the world of erotica. I was literally transported by each story. The thing is, not only were the stories outrageously sexy and sensual, as you’d expect, but the stories were beautifully woven to pull in the listeners, to allow them to get lost in the tale. I was completely captivated.

Since Wednesday night, I’ve been thinking about how much I love being read to, thinking about why there’s so much more magic in a story read out loud. Some of my earliest memories are of sitting on my mother’s lap while she read to me. I didn’t care what she read. It was the sound of her voice, the way she made the characters come alive, the way the story made me wonder and think and try to picture in my little-girl head a world so much bigger than the Wyoming lumber camp we were living in at the time, a place where the Swiss Family Robinson were surviving and thriving on their lost island, a place where kids, not much older than I, rode gorgeous black horses and solved scary crimes and chased spooky ghosts.

When my mother wasn’t reading to me, my grandfather, who lived with us, was telling stories of his youth, of near-misses with rattle snakes, of catching the biggest catfish ever and of the horse that no one but he could tame. And my dad had his own tales to tell, of practical jokes played on siblings, of dogs that bit, of destructive tornados.

My family knew the magic of story, and they shared that magic with me. The magic of a good story, the magic that compelled our ancestors to sit around a banked fire and listen to the histories of the tribe, listen to the tales of the family, listen to the myths and folk lore collected over generations is a living, breathing magic that still makes my heart race when I think about it.

Unlike our ancestors, we have it all written down now. We have access to a good story anytime. And yet the magic is never more powerful than when the story is read out loud. The power of story spoken goes bone deep and touches parts of us that are much older than our physical selves, parts of us that have roots around campfires sat beneath a sky full of stars.

Wednesday night, we all sat in the bright pink glow of Sh! basement, sipping fizz and listening to sexy tales, tales that offered yet another layer of magic, the magic and the mystery and the celebration of human sexuality told in a thousand creative ways in a thousand intricately woven tales. We listened to stories of what moves us, what makes us squirm, what transports us beyond ourselves while at the same time connects us most deeply to our own flesh.

Perhaps I’m just shamelessly navel-gazing this morning, waiting for my coffee to kick in, but the D.L. King/Sh! version of gathering around the ancestral hearth to listen to stories being shared made me think again about those things that connect us most deeply to our humanity, the sharing of story by word of mouth and the celebration of our sexuality. It seems to me that sex and story go hand in hand, and the community that celebrates both is a community I’m very proud to belong to.

 

 

The Story Behind Jacqueline Applebee’s Anthology, ‘Bisexual Men’

I’m very happy to have one of my favourite people, and an amazing erotic author, the fantastic Jacqueline Applebee, as my guest this week. Jacqi will be telling us the story behind her hot new anthology, ‘Bisexual Men.’ Welcome Jacqui!

I wrote Bisexual Men because simply put, I’d hardly ever read about bisexual men as a subject or a group before.  I could find books full of erotic stories about bisexual women, where the men were strictly heterosexual; even in threesome stories men would never touch each other.  I knew that bisexual men existed, but in the realm of erotic fiction they were rarely seen.  This seemed to reflect the prevalent media image where men are either “gay, straight or lying.”

I’ve been active with various bisexual communities in the U.K for the past eighteen years.  I’ve heard many negative stereotypes and myths about bisexual people, but for some reason, bisexual men really bear the brunt of a lot of hate.  I decided that I could either be depressed by that or I could turn it on its head.

Bisexual Men contains a mixture of stories.  In some tales, bisexual characters are out and proud, but in others coming out is a slow and careful process.  As I wrote this collection, I knew that this was something different, important but still incredibly sexy too.  I’m not ashamed to say that the thought of two or more men together really turns me on!

Gender was something that has interested me for many years. I used to identify as mostly-female, but not totally.  It still took me some time to realise that there are more than two genders out there. One of my stories in this collection, ‘Recognition’ tells of a female to male transman who finds acceptance and satisfying sex at a party, but only when his boyfriend stops treating him like a delicate woman who needs protecting.

Another rarity in erotic fiction is when outwardly-seeming gay men decide to be with women.  ‘Invisible Me’ was inspired by listening to a bisexual man talk about his experiences coming out as gay, and how things changed for him when he started identifying as bisexual several years later.

‘David does BiCon’ is something I’d wanted to write for ages.  BiCon (U.K bisexual convention) is an event that I’ve attended every year since 2007. It is incredible to be in a space where bisexuality is the norm, and where you can attend workshops on subjects as diverse as BDSM for beginners, Bi people in Sci-Fi, and Bisexuals of Colour.  I’ve met a few of my partners at BiCon, and I’ve made a lot of good friends there too.  I think I’ve done a good job of summing up the crazy weekend of fun in this story!

One of the biggest challenges for me was to write so many stories from a male point of view.  I also wanted to have stories where the protagonist was someone other than a young white man. Writing Bisexual Men has been a real learning experience for me.  I think I’ve grown as a result of writing stories very different to my usual style.  I trialled a lot of the stories at BiCon, and I also gave them to a few men of different sexualities to read.  The feedback I’ve received so far has been overwhelmingly positive, which is something I’m really pleased about.  It is my hope that everyone who reads this collection will enjoy it.  I hope they will be more aware of bisexual men as a unique group, and of course, I hope they get turned on too!

 Short blurb for Bisexual Men

Bisexual men are everywhere—haven’t you read about it yet?  These fifteen tales celebrate the sexy adventures by men who really do go both ways.  They love soft feminine curves and hard masculine muscles—as long as the action is hot, nothing will spoil the fun to be had!

Excerpt from Invisible Me:

There are some things I will eternally be grateful to gay men for: rubbering up was never high on my agenda until I attended a sexual health workshop run by the Terrence Higgins Trust years ago.  Of course everyone there thought I was a homosexual until I took off my jacket to reveal a tee-shirt with the slogan, ‘bats for both sides’ on it.  The friendly smiles dried up pretty quickly when I did that, but I was younger then.  I truly didn’t give a shit in those days.

I squeeze out a ribbon of lube from the pump dispenser on the dresser.  I rub myself up and down, spreading the slick fluid over my cock.  Sylvia’s eyes grow wide, dark.  A ribbed condom goes on next with a single flick of my wrist.  I cup my balls, look down, and then gaze up through my eyelashes; a patented move designed to make my lover’s mouth water.  I may be older than most studs, but hey I’ve still got it, and what’s more, I know how to use it too.

I take my time moving to the bed.  Sylvia wraps her long legs around my waist once I get close to her.  I hold her hands, pinning them to the mattress.  I move my hips, teasing her with my cock.  She tries to get it inside her, but I move just so, barely touching her pussy.  Sylvia wrenches one arm from my grip, and then she pulls me to her, kissing me with fierceness so strong that I am surprised.  When she leans back, her lips are swollen, and her face is flushed.  I let go of her other hand.

“Turn.”

My lover turns over, positions herself on her hands and knees.  I take in the long planes of her back, the fine hairs that start at her spine, only to disappear into the dark shadows of her arse.  I smell sweat and arousal.  I see her puckered hole twitch and relax.  I step back to the dresser, find a latex glove beneath the pile of condoms in their little silver packets.  I work the glove over my fingers, and then snap it on completely, making Sylvia jump slightly on the bed.  She is beautiful, but she is also the best kind of slut; she spreads her legs wider for me.  The squelch of the lube on my hands makes me shiver.  One finger delves to my lover’s arse, gently pressing until the muscled ring of flesh gives in to me.  I feel, rather than hear Sylvia moan; the tremor moves up my arm.  A second finger joins the first.  My lover pants and shudders beneath me.  My cock is so hard; just one touch could set me off.  I push inside her slippery pussy, feel consumed by this woman.  My fingers are rapidly being squeezed and pressed whilst my cock is sucked and massaged.  I steady myself, thrust in deeper.  I want to make Sylvia scream.

If gay men gave me an appreciation of rubbering up, then lesbian literature gave me all the knowledge I’d need about g-spots.  I know I’m on target when Sylvia’s voice drops an octave.  She thrusts back against me, harder and harder.  She comes shaking, clenching around me.  I carefully remove my fingers from her arse, and then I speed up my thrusts in her pussy.  I squeeze my eyes shut as I come; whisper her name.  We both collapse onto the bed in a sweaty heap.  I hold her as tightly as I dare.

I want to pull out, and then take her up the arse, even if I won’t be hard again for a while.  I want to be rougher with her than she’d let me.  I want to bend down, kiss a shaven head, and run fingers over a flat chest.  I love Sylvia, but I feel the little flame bend and twist inside me.  I don’t want my fire to go out.  I hold the base of the condom, slip out of her, and then I tie a knot in the rubber.  She doesn’t see me as I move.

I don’t stay the night.  I’ve got a presentation at work the next day, and I want to practice my big sell some more.  I can’t concentrate though; nothing makes sense.  I fluff my lines each time I try.  I give up, and go to bed thoroughly pissed off.

I wake up in the middle of the night; my cock is hard, and my mind is racing.  I dig out my old faithful: a gay trucker DVD.  Large muscular men grab arses, pound into sweaty flesh.  The screen is full of sucking, fucking, bad-ass truck drivers.  I haven’t hitchhiked in over fifteen years.  I never met any truckers like those onscreen during my travels, mores’ the pity.  I wank to the sound of digitised groans, and come into a handful of tissues I keep by the sofa.  I finally fall asleep feeling spent and satisfied.

Where to buy Bisexual Men

eXcessica http://www.excessica.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=456

Amazon.co.uk http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bisexual-Men-ebook/dp/B005OSIWOY/

Amazon.com in print. https://www.createspace.com/3535782

Amazon.com as an ebook http://www.amazon.com/Bisexual-Men-ebook/dp/B005OSIWOY

About Jacqueline Applebee

Jacqueline Applebee is a writer who breaks down barriers with smut. Her work has appeared in Best Women’s Erotica, Ultimate Lesbian Erotica, and many other anthologies.  She has written several novels, details of which can be found on her website (http://www.writing-in-shadows.co.uk)

Jacqueline can also be found online on her bisexual blog (http://j-applebee.tumblr.com), her polyamorous blog (http://howbigisyourheart) and on Twitter (http://twitter.com/applewriter)

‘Bats for both sides’ is one of a range of bisexual themed tee shirts available at the Bisexual Index (http://www.bisexualindex.org.uk/index.php/TheShop)

 

Thanks for stopping by, Jacqui! You nearly melted my monitor with this hot excerpt. Hope my Kindle can handle the heat!

 

Rachel Kramer Bussel Showcases Smut for All Occasions At Sh! Hoxton

I pile out of the over-heated tube at Old Street Station with my rucksack strapped to my back and my trusty google print-out of the directions to the Thistle City Barbican Hotel, the place I was lucky enough to find on lastminute.com just before desperation set in when every place else was full. The hotel is only the intermediate stop to my true destination, Sh! Women’s Emporium, Hoxton and the smut-reading highlight of the summer.

Yep, another fabulous reading! I’ve been looking forward to this one for ages. Aside from the obvious, that the reading is at Sh!, and I never miss a chance to visit Sh! there are several other reasons why this reading is special. Rachel Kramer Bussel is going to be at this reading, and she’s bringing cupcakes and reading smut! Even better than cupcakes, I get to read with her! Not only do I get to read with her, but I also get to read with some of my heros in the erotica firmament – Kay Jaybee, Jacqueline Applebee, Janine Ashbless, Justine Elyot, and Carmel Lockyer. So you can understand why I’m excited.

Like a woman with a mission, I manage to find the hotel without even one false turn, and I don’t even let the very large, rather disgruntled hen party in queue to check in ahead of me dampen my sweaty spirits. Once I’ve change, freshened up, and put on a bit of slap, I meet up with Kay Jaybee, who is in the same hotel, and we head off to say hi at Sh!, then to the Bluu Bar, which has become the meet-up place of choice for smutters before a read. Kay and I barely get settled in before Jacqueline Applebee arrives smiling and glowing from marching with Pride, earlier in the day. She’s traded in her Doc Martins for cool sandals and a summer dress, and that little twist of a smile she offers tells us we’re in for a treat tonight – nothing less than we would expect.

We’ve just commandeered a very large booth when we’re joined by the Lovely Lexie Bay, and the charming Mr. Bay, followed immediately by the fabulous Victoria Blisse down from Manchester, and this time she doesn’t have to take the last coach home! We’ve all just settled in when we’re joined by a yummy woman in black, who introduces herself as Justine Elyot, whose outrageously hot writing as well as online wit and charm we’re all familiar with, but until tonight we’ve never been able to put a face to a name. Tonight we even get to meet Mr Elyot.

I’m in smutter heaven chatting and laughing, talking writing and sex surrounded by so many great writers. And just when I think the company can’t get any better, a lovely redhead, dressed in green, and looking a bit like a wood nymph, stops at our table. ‘Excuse me,’ she says, ‘but you wouldn’t happen to be writers would you? I’m Janine Ashbless.’ And I’m over the moon!

Though I’m the odd one out with my American accent, we pretty much have England covered, with representatives from Devon, Doset, London, Yorkshire, Manchester, and Brighton, then there’s me representing Surrey by way of Oregon and Texas. Such an international world, the world of erotica!

At last we head over to Sh! where Renee greets us with a glass of fizz and Jo, looking angelic in white is busy putting out cupcakes. Downstairs Sh! is a hot pink Smutter’s Paradise, a place many of us have fond memories of previous readings on previous festive evenings. And for those who have never had the pleasure of a Sh! reading before, we know what a treat they’re in for. The exquisitely wicked Lucy Felthouse is not only there ahead of us, but she’s let her hair down for the occasion. She’s in the company of smutter extraordinaire, Rebecca Bond and the delicious Parv Roopray, who can always be relied upon for fab photos of the fun. They’re chatting with the one and only Ruby Jones, living up to her name in a hot red frock.

While Parv snaps photos with tenacious focus the rest of us sip fizz and eat cupcakes, catch up on the latest and wait for Rachel. I’m happy that Rebecca and Parv are both Smart Phone Divas, especially tonight since Raymond couldn’t be there, and I’m certain these two lovelies have already sent a quick photo or two off to Facebook for him to see from Louisiana.

While I’m slipping into my ‘make love to me naughtily’ shoes – made for reading, not walking, I meet the final author of the panoply, the stunning Carmel Lockyer, and the sly, knowing look on her face already tells me that she has a very hot read to share with us.

There’s a stirring in the crowd as a half a dozen people straight from Pride with face paint and sparkles join in the party, and the feeling is electric, as we wait. Suraya  Sidhu Singh, editor of the terrific magazine, Filament, is among the crowd, as is fantastic erotica writer and my very good friend, Scarlett French. And just when it’s beginning to feel like if one more person crowds into the luscious Sh! pinkness, the place will burst at the seams in a colourful explosion of collars and whips and knickers and lube, and naughty books, suddenly, there she is, Rachel Kramer Bussel! And wow, she is a fabulous mix of sparkle-goddess and little girl excitement, in a totally approachable package that instantly puts us all at ease, and makes us feel like SHE is actually there especially to meet US!

After Renee makes introductions, Rachel opens with an edgy story called ‘Belted,’ from her anthology, Orgasmic. It’s a story that’s hot and squirmy in an owchie sort of way.

I get to read second, following belts with mirrors and weight rooms and a little girl on girl fun from the Smooth anthology and my story, ‘Muscle Bound.’ From the Gotta Have It anthology, Jacqueline Applebee delights us with ‘Not a Bang, but a Whisper,’ a threesome story that has an outrageously yummy twist. Kay Jaybee regails us with ‘The Advantage of Working From Home,’ and Carmel Lockyer entertains us with the hottest fitting for a bridesmaid dress ever in ‘Crushed Satin Organza.’ She reads it while standing up because she says that’s how she wrote it. Both Kay and Carmel’s stories are also from the Gotta Have It anthology.

After a break for more fizz and cupcakes and mingling among smutters and audience and whips and lingerie, we get to be the first group ever to hear the phenomenal Justine Elyot read from her hot story, ‘The London O’ in Rachel’s Surrender anthology. I certainly hope it won’t be the last time we hear her read, because her delicious story about vibrating, remote control knickers had us all squirming in our seats.

Then Janine Ashbless took us for a little historic bondage romp with a hotter than hot coming-of-age twist in ‘The Ingénue’ from Best Bondage Erotica 2011. Oh my! And finally Rachel closed with another Gotta Have It offering by Heather Linn, called ‘Seven-letter Word.’

After the reading was done, Rachel opened up the floor for questions. One question asked was what Rachel found inspiring, to which she answered that she was inspired by ordinary things. I could see all the erotica writers nodding in agreement. What makes a good erotic story is finding the erotic in the ordinary because that is the place where it’s the most unexpected, which makes it the place where it’s the hottest.

Though Rachel was unable to join us, the party continued at Pizza Express at the table which has, by default become the smutter’s table over the months of reading and attending readings at Sh! I’ve never been too proud to elbow my way in at a seat closet to the middle of the table where I can talk with as many of the group as possible, and there were ten of us. The talk was all on the topics that never get old, the topics we keep coming back to over and over again: writing, sex, creativity, the process that consumes us and makes our lives, as erotica writers, such an interesting dance.

For the most part, we write in delicious isolation, creating a space to work in the midst of real life that takes up the lion share of our time. Though we’re now all connected to each other via the magic of technology, it’s the pleasure of meeting, in the flesh, other people who are also writing stories about connecting on the most basic, most human level that adds to the party atmosphere. That flesh and blood contact makes us feel connected in ways technology just can’t manage, makes us realize that though we may work in sweet isolation, we’re a part of something much bigger, something much more powerful.  And for the few hours we’re together we bask in the energy of it all.

When the night’s over and we return to our real lives, when we seek out our little bits of isolation and the stories that have to be written, we take some of that energy with us and translate it into hot, steamy, vibrant, sometimes dark and gritty stories. But at least for a few hours, we understand that we’re a part of a collective, and it’s an amazing vibrant creative hothouse of a collective that makes our isolation all the more delicious.

 

 

Sexy Friday Night

Wow! Check this out from Scarlett French. Am I going to be in amazing company or what?!

“Are you already sick of ‘Jingle Bells’? Fancy a bit of subversion to make you feel normal?

Then come to Sh! Women’s Erotic Emporium (Hoxton Square, London N1) for a bit of pre-Christmas aural porn – this Friday, 18th December, 7pm.

Scarlett French and K D Grace will be reading from the recently launched Best Women’s Erotica 2010

Jacqueline Applebee will give us a little taster of Best of Best Women’s Erotica, due out early next year.

In addition to these consummate pleasures, I have great delight in announcing that we will have with us the sublime Violet Blue, author of many bestsellers including The Ultimate Guide to Cunnilingus, The Ultimate Guide to Fellatio, The Ultimate Guide to Adult Videos, and How to Kiss. She is also the editor of the Best Women’s Erotica series and many other erotic anthologies. She is a high profile blogger and tech personality and can found at www.tinynibbles.com (and at Sh! this Friday!)”

The venue is limited to thirty people, so if you want to come, please call Joanna at
0207 613 54 58.

Neighbourhood: Haggerston
57 Hoxton Square
London N1 6PB

www.sh-womenstore.com

 
© 2017 K D Grace
The Romance Reviews

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