Tag Archives: Shoreditch

London by Accident, or the Long Way to Get to the Sexy Summer Reading at Sh!

shoreditch2Friday night we ended up in London by accident. That’s right, by accident. Oh we knew where we were going and we had a plan. We were going to hear Justine Elyot and Kristina Lloyd read at Sh! I was so excited. I love it when I get to sit in the audience and listen to my favourite authors read from their works. I’d been looking forward to this event for weeks. Now as you might imagine, I can find my way to Sh! from my house with my eyes closed, I’ve been there so often. It’s the place I love to go for a good time and a friendly natter and a cuppa. That meant, we hopped the train without checking for directions, times. Or DATES!

I had it in my head that I would work on the train both coming and going to London. Oh, I was going to enjoy listening to the readings and being at Sh! and having some catch-up time with some of my favourite people, but I’ve got a short story that I need to write and another novel that needs to be mapped out. I quite often work on my BlackBerry and email the results back home. I was confident I could accomplish a lot and then get back to work on the final rewrite of The Exhibition after we got back home. All business-like — that would be me. Anything to eke out a few more minutes writing or PR time. A writer’s work is never done.

We were nearly to Clapham Junction, enjoying a relaxed ride on an uncrowded train when an email exchange with Kay Jaybee in which I mentioned what we were doing resulted in her email equivalent of clearing her throat and saying, ‘Sweetie, I don’t want to alarm you, but the Sexy Summer Reading event at Sh! is tomorrow night.’

Shoreditch 1imagesEeep! Noooo! Surely I couldn’t have made such a stupid mistake, not super-anal me! But oh yes! I f*cked up majorly! My long suffering husband only offered me a lazy smile and said, ‘Well it’s a good thing you didn’t decide to get a hotel room for the night.’

The Shadow is responsibe! I have no doubt. Anyone who knows a tidbit about Jungian psychology knows that the shadow is the part of our personality that bites us in the butt when we’re taking ourselves too seriously. Well, all I can say is that I have huge bite marks all over my backside!

We were almost there, so the question became what to do when you find yourself accidentally in London on a Friday night? We tubed it up to Leicester Square to check the half-price ticket booths and found nothing that really jumped out at us, nor was there anything at the cinema that we really were dying to see, so we tubed it on over to Shoreditch in spite of the definite lack of a reading at Sh! that night. There’s a kebab place just around the corner and up the street a bit from Sh! that serves the best kebabs this side of Turkey, and I have to admit it, I love a good kebab. We’ve been there often enough the owners always recognize us and greet us with a smile and yummy food. A chicken donner kabab, baklava to die for and a double espresso later and I’m not feeling quite so stupid.

Sh!We decided to drop by Sh! anyway and say hi to the lovely Renee and the delish Jo, who were very busy with the Friday night rush and very sympathetic and kind to the crazy woman who showed up a day early. They were sorry they couldn’t offer us accommodation for the night in the yummy Sh! basement, a place we both agreed would be great fun to be shut up in overnight.

With no real plan in the works and an exquisite warm night ahead of us, we decided to wander about Shoreditch for a little while, especially since I have plans to set another novel there. Then we’d find a nice pub for a pint. If you’ve read my novella, Kinky Boots, then you’ve got a flavour for Shoreditch on a Friday night. Vibrant is the single word I’d used to describe it. Here’s a bit of description from Kinky Boots.

Still, she was in Shorditch on a Friday night. If she were going to end up alone, she couldn’t think of any placeKinky_Boots she’d rather be. It was easy to get caught up in the excitement along the streets lined with bars and clubs and interesting shops. She loved the higgledy-piggledy architecture that often involved glass and steel in the personal space of very accommodating Victorian brick and stone which had already gone through who knew how many marriages of convenience before. All around the concrete ugliness of the sixties groped and nuzzled solicitously at streets that could have come straight from a Sherlock Holms novel. It was a great patchwork of a place, heaving with frenetic humanity all bound and determined to enjoy the hell out of every last drunken, chaotic, celebratory second of the weekend. She was jostled by the enthusiastic spill-over of people with drinks and fags in front of Juno. A hen party pushed past into an off-license. People on the busy pavements crowded onto the narrow side streets impeding the odd taxi or limo.

We spent a little time exploring Shoreditch Box Park – the world’s first popup mall, which was heaving with after-work revellers enjoying the warm night, the gorgeous summer sky and myriad alcoholic beverages. Then we wandered past the intriguing mix of old and new buildings to end up in the Water Poet Pub with a bazillion other Londoners who were enjoying the summer night. We actually found a table and had a pint of Truman’s wonderfully hoppy ale while watching people come and go. People-watching in London is the best, especially in a pub in Shoreditch on Friday night.

box parkimagesFrom there we wandered down the Crown and Shuttle Pub, ending up enjoying a pint of Best Bitter out in the heaving beer garden that was surrounded by a vertical history of Shoreditch in brick and stone. We both decided we needed Kay Jaybee to give us a little industrial archaeological tour of what we were looking at in the mish-mash of bricked up windows and replastered stone walls and the spaghetti bowl of wrought iron stair cases and balconies hanging above us. It was standing room only, and we found a place next the foosball table, leaning against an aging brick wall with a strange blue door that was locked and bolted. It conjured all kinds of speculation on just what might be hidden behind. We watched people and listened to the music and laughter and clinking of glasses as everyone celebrated the beginning of the weekend. Not the night we’d planned, but as we crawled onto our train back home, sleepy and smiling we both decided maybe this was a situation in which the Shadow’s nip in the hiney was well worth it.

If you’re worried that I missed a fabulous evening with Justine and Kristina last night, don’t be! Last night, reassured of dates times, travel cards, venues, and shoe size, we made it to Sh! just in time to celebrate with Justine, Kristina, and the amazing new talent, S. M. Taylor. You may remember a short story competition Black Lace ran last year with The Daily Mail, well it was S.M. Taylor’s wonderful short story, Forbidden, which won the competition. Portia Da Costa, Kristina, and Gillian Green were judges in that competition and S.M.’s story is now published at the end of Kristina’s new novel, Thrill Seeker.

Sh! was fabuouls, as always, and last night was even better because not only were Renee and Jo there but so was the totally awesome Shelly. It was almost like a Sh! family reunion, complete with the indomitable Renee thwarting a shoplifting attempt during one of the readings. Seiously, the Sh! women are a stunning combination of goddesses and super heroes. Move over Wonder Woman!

The evening started with a special guest appearance from Primula Bond, who read from her new novel, The Silver Chain, then romped on with Kristina reading some fabulously evocative and sexy scenes from Thrill Seeker. Then Justine made the room warmer still with two very fun, naughty readings from her collection, Seven Scarlet Tales, spanking stories extraordinaire.

Oh yes! It was SO worth another trip to London! And what have I learned from this adventurous weekend? 1) If one trip to London is good, two is better! 2) Always double-check dates of events. 3) Some things are worth coming back for. 4) Life is short. Take time to play.

Hope you’re all having a playful weekend!

Kinky Boots: Sexy Possession Coming Soon!


Of course I had to set my petite novel, Kinky Boots, in Shoreditch! Where else in London could possibly have that sexy, slightly mystical, more than a little raunchy, have-a-good-time feel to it? Yes, I know I might be a little bit prejudiced. I have so many fond memories of Shoreditch because Sh! Women’s Store is there, and that’s my favourite place for launch parties and celebrating all things sexy.

I had the basic storyline in my head for Kinky Boots long before I put the first word down. I knew all about Jill Hart and her sexy new boots that came with something extra. I knew all about Finn Masters, the owner of Demon Heels, the quirky all-night shoe store where Jill buys her kinky boots. And I knew all about Eleanor, the lust demon who moves right in and makes herself at home — in Jill, that is. What I couldn’t quite decide was where to set Kinky Boots.  Raymond and I were in London for the weekend. Friday night at Sh! there had been readings from Best Women’s Erotica 2012, and we were staying on for the launch of Kay Jaybee’s great BDSM novel, The Perfect Submissive the next night. On  Saturday afternoon after a delish kabab at a local shop, Kay, Raymond and I decided to go for a walk in the July sunshine. And I was hooked! In front of Shoreditch City Hall, a lesbian wedding party were posing for pictures, the place was buzzing with shoppers, and I found not one but three quirky shoe shops on Shoreditch High Street, any one of which would perfectly suit my story.

In daylight, I was totally taken in by the wild blend of ultra modern glass and steel right up in the personal space of Victorian brick and stone,Kinky_Boots snuggled in close to streets that looked as though they came straight from a Sherlock Holmes novel. All of that was mixed up with industrial ruins and modern make-overs that made for an architectural orgy perfectly suited for my story. Kay, who had studied industrial archeology, gave me the low-down on what I was actually looking at.  I’d already done enough launch parties in Shoreditch to know that the streets on Friday and Saturday night are alive with people who won’t settle for less than a great time, and that was all it took. Voila! Kinky Boots was set in Shoreditch, starting with a botched girls night out at the Bluu Bar across from Sh!, a night out that ends with sex in an all-night shoe store, hot new boots, and posession by sexiest lust demon ever.

On the 24th of January, Kinky Boots, published by Mischief Books, will be officially available for possession! I’m very excited to share just a little peek of the wickedly naughty fun to come. There’ll be a blog tour and more updates as they happen. In the meantime, here’s just a sneak preview of what happens when mild-mannered Jill Hart meets lust demon extraordinare, Eleanore.


After a sizzling encounter in DEMON HEELS, a quirky all-night shoe store, with the store’s hot owner, FINN MASTERS, JILL HART walks away in the most gorgeous boots ever. Her new boots come with an unexpected bonus, a sexy demon named ELEANOR, who’s looking for a good time. All she lacks is a body, and Jill’s will do nicely.

Jill quits her dead-end job and, not knowing what’s come over her stops by the nearest pub intent on doing tequila shots until she falls off the stool. Instead she does FINN MASTERS in the beer garden, unwittingly participating in her first ever threesome. The boots were the bait, the timing was right and Eleanor has new digs. It’s Finn job to prevent Eleanor’s misbehaving. His failure means he’ll have to ride shotgun and do damage control until Eleanor moves out at the next full moon.

With Eleanor in residence, Jill’s bolder, sexier, willing to take risks. But is she a whole new Jill, or is it just demon courage? And how will Finn feel about her when she’s just plain Jill again? Will the maddeningly magical ménage make Jill’s dreams come true, or will it break her heart?


Jill returned to her flat feeling pretty chuffed with the events of the evening. Nice place, Kinky Boots. Really nice. And the bloke who ran it – hotter than hot. There was something else about him, something strangely familiar, almost like if they sat down together over a cuppa they’d discover that they’d always known each other. She smiled to herself at the thought. She really couldn’t imagine them getting through a whole cuppa together without her ripping his jeans off and shagging him senseless. Even with his clothes on, it hadn’t been hard to tell that he was very nicely equipped for the task. She looked down at her lovely new boots, boots she’d left without paying for. It was the perfect excuse for going back.

* * *

shoreditch2Under the circumstances, she figured she’d be too hyped to sleep, but she did so almost instantly.

And before long the room was awash in mist that floated and swirled around her bed. Had the weather turned while she was sleeping, bringing the fog? Had she forgotten to shut her window? A sudden gust of cool wind cleared the mist just enough for Jill to catch the first glimpse of the woman at the foot of her bed, pale and translucent, lit with way more silver light than even the full moon could provide.

Strange, as she approached the bed, the curvy, feminine shape of her was clear, as though her thin clingy robe were made from the mist itself, but the woman’s face remained out of focus, as though Jill were viewing her from underwater.

She sat down on the bed next to her, and still Jill couldn’t make out the details of her face. But her voice was rich and silky, and Jill had the urge to wrap herself in the caress of it. ‘I’ve waited a long time for you, Jill Hart. Finn is such a spoilsport, not letting me play. But you’re different. He likes you, and he’ll warm to the idea of the two of us. You’ll see.’ She rubbed her hands together in anticipation. ‘Now then, sweetie, let’s have a look. Let’s see our lovely new body.’ As she reached out to smooth Jill’s hair away from her face, Jill was suddenly unable to move.

It was a dream then, surely a dream, Jill thought; one of those where someone important is at the door, but you’re paralysed, lying there in the bed, and, no matter how hard you try, you just can’t move.

The woman leaned down and kissed her on the mouth, and her breath was winter-cold but sweet and hypnotic with its icy in and out, in and out.

With a flick of her wrist she threw back the duvet and sighed her delight. Jill was surprised to find herself naked. ‘Oh, my darling, how I’ve Shoreditch town halllonged to bear the weight of breasts again, to feel the hardening and puckering of their arousal.’ She brushed cold fingertips across Jill’s nipples and they rose to a touch that was irresistible. Jill would have arched up against the cool feathery caress if she’d been able. Instead she lay unmoving, her chest rising and falling faster and faster, her nipples pearled to hard beads begging for the woman’s attention.

The woman continued her explorations. ‘Oh, the delight of belly and hips, and, ah, yes, such softness down there.’ She trailed her fingers down Jill’s tummy and cupped her mons, caressed and fondled her tight curls, and the sound that escaped Jill’s lips was a kittenish mew.

The woman smiled knowingly. ‘The pleasures of the flesh, my lovely, how we shall share them, how we shall revel in them, you and I. It’ll be so delicious for both of us, I promise you.’ Then, with the flat of her hand, she opened Jill’s legs.

Jill was helpless to deny her access, even if she’d wanted to, and she didn’t. It was only a dream, she told herself, and sexy dreams should come as no surprise after her encounter at Kinky Boots. And anyway, it had to be a dream because she was too shy even to undress in front of Vivie, and here she lay practically willing this woman to check out all that she had … down there.

‘Let us see, my darling,’ the woman cooed. ‘Let us see you.’ Jill watched helplessly as the woman forced her knees up and wide until Jill felt herself exposed, butter-cream slick and heavy.

Shoreditch 1images‘Yes, my love. That’s it. Let me see what we shall have such delight in sharing. Oh, yes, lovely. So lovely.’ With one hand still resting in Jill’s pubic curls the woman lowered her face for a closer look. Then with a scoop and a twist she trailed fingers up between Jill’s cleft and brought them to her lips as though she were tasting her favourite dish. ‘Mmm,’ she whispered. ‘Oh, Finn’s going to love you.’ She lowered a tongue-flick of a kiss onto Jill’s hard clit, and Jill came. The electrifying power of her orgasm raged through her paralysed body to every nerve ending, every blood cell, every synapse, raging out in all directions, then returning in a hot rush of energy to the hardened node of her clit before settling deep inside her. She could neither writhe nor buck. All she could do was moan and quiver.

‘Oh, yes, my darling, you are delightful, the way your lovely pussy muscles tighten and convulse when you come. How wonderful it will be to have a body with such libido, such hunger. Oh, how Finn will ride you. I think that –’

The woman was interrupted by the call of a man. ‘Eleanor? Eleanor, are you there?’

She put a finger to her lips. ‘He’ll find out eventually, dear Jill, but when he does it’ll no longer matter.’ She brushed a kiss across Jill’s lips, and for the first time Jill got a clear view of the woman’s face. She recognised it well because it was her face. Before she could dwell on the strangeness of such a revelation, the woman lay down in her arms, nuzzled in tight against Jill’s breasts and pulled the duvet up over both of them. From a distance Jill could still hear the man calling for Eleanor, but that was the last thing she remembered until morning.

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