Reaching Out from a Mind as Dirty as All Outdoors

If you get lucky enough, I might post adult-only material from time to time, so be 18 or over, or please be elsewhere.

I'll be discussing erotica here, the writing of it and the people who write it, as well as what we've written. I find all these aspects stimulating, but if any of them bore you, feel free to skim. You never know what you might miss, though.




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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Helping Vampires to Save the World






Here’s what Lisabet Sarai has to say about Coming Together: In Vein, the new anthology she’s edited for the Coming Together charity anthology series. And at the end, I’ve posted an excerpt from my own story in the book, Jessebel, narrated by a transgender character in a western town a few years after the end of the Civil War. Sorry, all the sex comes at the end of the story; you’ll have to get the book for that, and so much more by the other terrific authors.

Now to quote Lisabet:

Let's face it. Vampires are sexy. Something about the undead stirs up our juices. Perhaps it's their irresistible power. Even when we know the danger, we're so very tempted to surrender to their all-consuming lust. Maybe we want to comfort them, to save them a lonely, bloody eternity. Maybe we secretly crave immortality ourselves.

Vampires are frequently portrayed as evil or at least amoral, viewing humanity from the jaded perspective of centuries. Now, though, vampires are doing their part to save the world.

Coming Together: In Vein is a brand new collection of vampire-themed erotica and erotic romance edited by Lisabet Sarai. All sales of this novel-length volume support Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières). MSF works in nearly 70 countries providing medical aid to those most in need regardless of their race, religion, or political affiliation. Right now, despite being barred from the country, MSF doctors and nurses are in Syria, working with patients from both sides of the civil war. They're performing surgery in caves and sneaking into refugee camps to distribute desperately needed medications.

You can help MSF in its life-saving mission, simply by indulging your passion for vampires. Buy a copy of Coming Together: In Vein in ebook , Kindle formator print.

Enjoy! Then help spread the word! Every copy we sell has the potential to save someone's life.

The list of contributors  includes many names you'll recognize. Every one of these authors has provided his or her work free of charge, to support the charitable aims of the project. Furthermore, the editor is giving away a free copy of her short story collection Body Electric  to everyone who buys a copy of Coming Together: In Vein. (For details of this offer, click here)

You'll find an excerpt below – just to whet your appetite.

Sink your teeth into Coming Together: In Vein. Help our vampires save the world.


JESSEBEL

Sacchi Green

“See there, Cap’n, ain’t she somethin’? Jezebel, they calls ‘er, but most likely she’s just plain Mabel or Hildy underneath it all.”
I looked through the drifting cigar smoke and shifting bodies. Maybe three or four of those figures were recognizably female—for damned sure not counting my own well-concealed form—but there was no doubt as to which one had sparked the old stable hand’s enthusiasm. I couldn’t see much; her back was to the door, and a rancher’s burly arms enveloped her in a most unchaste fashion as they danced, but even so there seemed to be a glow about her that drew the eye. Chestnut curls tumbled across slender shoulders, and emerald silk clung to rounded, swaying hips that promised the uttermost in carnal delights without sacrificing the least degree of elegance.
“Sure is, Bill,” I agreed, “but what’s a fine piece like that doing in a place like this?”
“Plenty of business, that’s what.” Bill elbowed me in the ribs. I only just managed to pivot enough to keep my bound-up tender bits from taking the full impact. When I turned back the girl swung around so that for a moment, before her partner’s bulk blocked the view, I saw her face, beautiful in spite of all its paint, not because of it.
The room swirled around me. The floor tilted. I clutched at the back of a chair, muttered an apology to the card player occupying it, and lurched back out through the swinging doors.
The last time I’d kissed that face it had been ashen, dirt-smeared, streaked with blood and my tears. The last time I’d held that dear body in my arms, life and warmth had seeped away.
The last time I’d seen her, she’d been dead.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

What Editors Look For

Writer and reviewer Ashley Lister has a new book coming out: How to Write Erotic Fiction and Sex Scenes. On the blog for his book, he's been posting daily bits of advice from writers and editor, and mine went up a few days ago. You can see them all linked from Ash's Facebook page, and I linked to mine from my Facebook page, but as a public service of sorts I'm re-posting it here. (We were limited to five suggestions, which was a good thing; otherwise I'd still be going on about it.)


1) Tell a story as only you can tell it. Be familiar with other writing in your genre, but don’t imitate anyone else. As an editor I look for an original approach and a distinctive voice; something to set a story apart from all the thousands I’ve seen before. Surprise me!

2) Make your characters so real that the reader can tell them apart just by the way they act and speak, even when you don’t specify who’s speaking.

3) Pay attention to the rhythm of your prose. Vary the length and structure of your sentences (unless, of course, you use short, choppy sentences or long, rambling ones to make a certain point or define a character.)

4) Don’t assume that grammatical constructions you see over and over must be correct, or should be used over and over. There’s no need for sentence after sentence, or even paragraph after paragraph, to begin with a participial phrase such as “Opening the door, she crossed the room.” Think about that. Is the room so small one could cross it while still in the process of opening the door? Even when there’s no such grammatical problem, overuse of “ing” looks amateurish (and is, obviously, one of my pet peeves.) There are other more varied ways of avoiding too many sentences that start with “she” or the character’s name.

5) And speaking of pet peeves, particularly when dealing with erotica, PLEASE be sure you know whether your character’s movements and actions are physically possible. I’m not talking about superhuman endurance, or strength; I’m just considering logistics. Remember whose various parts are where, and don’t tie the reader’s (and editor’s) mind in knots trying to figure out how what was up is suddenly down, and why what faced one direction (and was, in fact, tied that way) is suddenly available for full frontal play. This sort of thing can apply to any scenes of concentrated action, erotic or otherwise, but interrupting the flow of a sex scene is especially, well, frustrating.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Next Big Thing – Writers Discuss New Work




As part of ‘The Next Big Thing Blog Hop,’ I was tagged by the wonderful writer Sally Bellerose in her post this week. http://sallybellerose.wordpress.com/2012/12/05/the-next-big-thing-writers-discuss-new-work/  The purpose of this hop is to expose folks to writers and their work that perhaps they haven’t heard of, whether a new release or a Work in Progress (WIP). This is week 25.

According to the rules of the hop, I will be answering some questions (the same ones for every other blog hopper) about either my newest release or my WIP and then at the bottom of the post I’ll listed authors who will do the same thing in their blogs next Wednesday Dec 19th.


What is the working title of your book?

I’m cheating here right away. My anthology releases this year were Girl Fever: 69 Tales of Sudden Sex for Lesbians (edited for Cleis Press) out in June, and Heiresses of Russ 2012: the Year’s Best Lesbian Speculative Fiction (co-edited by my alter-ego Connie Wilkins with Steve Berman for Lethe Press) out in October. My next anthology, Wild Girls, Wild Nights: True Lesbian Sex Stories (edited for Cleis Press) will be out next June.  But I’m going to discuss a short story just out in November in Kristina Wright’s anthology Duty and Desire: Military Erotic Romance (Cleis Press) and being reprinted in Radclyffe’s Best Lesbian Romance 2013 (Cleis Press) in February. The story, “Sergeant Rae,” is quite short, but sticks in my mind, and I might yet expand it to novel length. Maybe.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

I’ve never served in the military myself, but the concept of women (especially lesbians) serving under all the constraints and tensions of such a situation has fascinated me for many years, and I’ve written several short stories about women soldiers from WWII to Vietnam and on to Iraq and Afghanistan. All that research still simmers in my subconscious, and this time an irresistible pair of characters bubbled to the top and demanded that their story be told.

On the off chance that you might be interested in more stories about lesbians in the military, here’s a list of mine:
“To Remember You By” in Hanne Blank’s Shameless: Women’s Intimate Erotica, 2002, Seal Press, reprinted in Maxim Jakubowski’s The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica, Vol. 3, 2004, Mammoth Books, and reprinted again in my own collection for Lethe Press, A Ride to Remember, 2011. (In WWII London, a WAC nurse meets an American woman pilot who ferries planes for the RAF. This one is also posted for free on my blog, temporarily, if you scroll down far enough and search for it. I wrote a sequel with the same characters 30 years later, but by then they’re no longer in the military.)

“At Liberty” in Ultimate Lesbian Erotica 2005, edited by Nicole Foster for Alyson Press, 2004 (An Iraq War vet with PTSD climbs Miss Liberty.)

“Dietrich Wears Army Boots” in Wicked: Sexy Tales of Legendary Lovers, edited by Mitzi Szereto for Cleis Press, 2005, reprinted in my collection A Ride to Remember, Lethe Press, 2011. (Fictional treatment of Marlene’s actual service entertaining the Allied troops during the Battle of the Bulge in WWII.)

“Lipstick on Her Collar” in Lipstick on Her Collar and Other Tales of Lesbian Lust, edited by Sacchi Green and Rakelle Valencia for Pretty Things Press, 2008, reprinted in Best Lesbian Erotica 2009, Cleis Press (In Vietnam a WAC jeep-jockey shows a woman reporter the ropes of being In Country.)

“Danger” in Lesbian Lust, edited by Sacchi Green for Cleis Press, 2010 (An Army nurse and a WAC, both just back from Vietnam, meet accidentally on the scene of the Stonewall Uprising.)

“The Gift” in Best Lesbian Romance 2011, edited by Radclyffe for Cleis Press, 2011. (A British soldier in Afghanistan has a dream encounter with the lover she left behind her.)

What genre does your book fall under?

Both anthologies that include my story are classed as erotic romance, and that’s a good fit. Duty and Desire is mainly heterosexual in emphasis, with a few LGBT pieces like mine. Best Lesbian Romance is, obviously, filled with lesbian stories. To be most specific, my story “Sergeant Rae” is lesbian erotic romance, but could fit easily in an erotica book as well.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

That’s a really tough one. For the younger, vulnerable-but-tough-as-armored-tank-treads Jenny, I could see someone like a younger Sissy Spacek, if there’s such an actress out there. For Sergeant Rae herself, my vision is so specifically of someone I’ve known very well, but is not an actress, that I can’t think of any professional actress who could handle her.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

An injured army tank mechanic and a paraplegic sergeant find love and healing in the aftermath of war.


What is the longer synopsis of your book?

Sgt. Rae saved Jenny when their convoy hit a minefield. Jenny gave Sgt. Rae, more drastically wounded, a will to live through months of hospitalization and therapy. Now they work to heal and make a life together in rural New England. 


Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

All my work so far has been short fiction in books from established publishers, but if I expand it into a novel, who knows? 


How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

A couple of weeks. But it’s quite a short story.


Who or What inspired you to write this book?

All the history and memoirs I’ve read about women in the military, as well as stories I’ve been told, inspired me.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Besides dealing with women in the military, the story addresses the aftermath of wars, disabilities, gay marriage, and a certain psychological element of the need for kinky sex.

Here’s snippet that might pique the reader’s interest:

Sgt. Rae was so strong she could carry me at a run through gunfire and smoke and exploding mines. Two years later, she’s that strong again. With just one hand she can hold me from getting away, no matter how hard I struggle. Even her voice is enough to stop me at a dead run, so it doesn’t matter that she can’t run any more. And anyway, I’d never want to run away.
I’m smaller, but I’ve got my own kind of muscle, even if it doesn’t show. A mechanic in an armored tank unit has to be strong just to handle the tools you need, and if you’re a woman doing the job you need a whole extra layer of strength. I’m not an army mechanic any more, but I can still use tools; Sgt. Rae isn’t an army Sgt. any more, but she’ll always be in charge. At the town hall where she’s the police and fire department dispatcher, they tell me she’s got the whole place organized like it’s never been before.
In our house, or in the town, I’m supposed to just call her Rae these days, and mostly I remember. I’m just Jenny. In the bedroom, we don’t need names at all, except to wake each other when the bad dreams come, and whisper that everything’s all right now. Or close enough to handle, as long as we’re together.
 


Next Wednesday check out these author’s blogs to find out about their Next Big Thing:

Jove Bell: http://jovebelle.wordpress.com/

MJ Williamz: http://mjwilliamz.wordpress.com/

Teresa Noelle Roberts: http://www.teresanoelleroberts.com

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Special Deal on Heireses of Russ 2011 and 2012




Both volumes of the HEIRESSES OF RUSS: the Year's Best Lesbian Speculative Fiction series (2011 & 2012) are available as e-books for 9.99 through the end of this year. Two for the price of one!
--terrific tales of lesbian fantasy and science fiction
The links are right on Lethe's splash page: http://www.lethepressbooks.com/

My alter-ego Connie Wilkins is co-editor of the 2012 volume. We've had terrific reviews from Publisher's Weekly, Lambda Literary Review, Tor.com, and The Future Fire. The reviews are nearly as much fun to read as the stories.

Lambda Literary review:
http://www.lambdaliterary.org/reviews/09/11/heiresses-of-russ-2012-the-years-best-lesbian-speculative-fiction-edited-by-connie-wilkins-and-steve-berman/ 

Publisher’s Weekly:
http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-1-59021-159-5

The Future Fire:
http://reviews.futurefire.net/2012/08/wilkins-berman-edd-heiresses-of-russ.html

Tor.com:
http://www.tor.com/blogs/2012/10/various-and-fun-heiresses-of-russ-2012-edited-by-connie-wilkins-and-steve-berman


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Hear Me Read from Thrones of Desire

I finally figured out how to make audio files, so I joined other contributors to Mitzi Szereto's Thrones of Desire: Erotic Tales of Swords, Mist and Fire in reading excerpts from our stories. I' not sure I can bring myself to listen to mine, but I'm definitely going to check out the others! (That cover girl looks quite a bit like my point-of-view character in my story, "Flesh and Stone.")

http://mitziszereto.com/thronesofdesire/author-readings/


Sunday, October 28, 2012

A “Cheeky” Change of Pace



For a change of pace, I’m blogging about a book I didn’t edit, Cheeky Spanking Stories, edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel for Cleis Press. I didn’t even contribute to the book, although I’ve written at least three spanking stories for Rachel in past years. (One was even more or less nonfiction, about a lesson in this particular form of cathartic diversion at the knee of a charismatic master of the art.)

At least ten of the twenty-three authors in Cheeky have also written for one or more of my own anthologies. Their work here is, as always, excellent, and in this case particularly (and appropriately) striking. I decided to concentrate on the five pieces with a lesbian point of view, since that’s what these writers have done so well for me. When it comes to spanking, though, I think gender takes a back seat to focused physical and emotional factors that transcend binary sex, so whatever your physical equipment and your orientation, you’ll feel the impact of these stories right where it counts.

As an extra change of pace, I’m not going to describe them. Instead, I’ve asked the authors to share some background about how they were written. Inspiration, frustration, state of mind, imagery—when you read the stories, they’ll speak for themselves, but right now you get the extra gift of a look into the minds that created them.


I love Teresa Noelle Roberts’s “Mermaid” for the way she writes, and also for using rope bondage to create a human "mermaid," a concept so logical that it seems obvious, except that I’ve never come across it before. And yes, the rope does leave enough vulnerable territory for spanking. Here’s what Teresa told me about the origin of “Mermaid.”

“’Mermaid’ started with the setting. Ogunquit, in southern Maine, is one of my favorite places to spend time, and a place that's taken on special meaning to my husband and me, and to our self-chosen family. The name means "beautiful place by the sea" in Abenaki, and while the area's first inhabitants wouldn't recognize the quaint shops, art galleries, and restaurants, they'd find the magnificent sandy beach--one of the best in New England--refreshingly unchanged, especially far from the village center. The far end of the beach is unlit, undeveloped, and largely deserted at night when it's not high summer. My husband and I have a tradition of walking that part of the beach in the dark. The roaring ocean and the stars and the sense of isolation create a romantic atmosphere that's hard to resist--and I admit we haven't always resisted, though we've never done anything as elaborate as the scene Mallory and her "mermaid" act out.

The mermaid imagery grew naturally from a combination of the setting, and the fact that I may or may not have reason to know something about the joys of seaside spankings. (Tries to look innocent and fails miserable). The characters were influenced by the setting as well. It was easy to picture them on my favorite beach because I saw "them" enjoying Ogunquit each time we did. Ogunquit prides itself on being GBLT friendly, as well as family friendly, elder friendly...a comfortable, welcoming place for all. It's not a party scene like Provincetown can be, and there's not a sex shop or leather bar to be found, but the atmosphere is sure to inspire romantic feelings. And for some of us, romance involves kinky erotic experiments.”



Kiki DeLovely’s “A Game of Numbers” is, in a way, set more inside the head than outside, without ignoring in the least the intensity of physical sensations. Here’s how she describes her process.

“Sapiosexuality. Who doesn't love an intellectual hard-on? That plus a dominant personality pretty much does me in. And out of those two elements my two characters in ‘A Game of Numbers’ were born. I wanted them to have a fiery passion between them but the kind that's sustainable over a long period of time. I wanted them to be a little bit older, to have an everyday sort of comfortability within their relationship, yet that spark that means they always keep each other guessing. (Hence, the very unexpected twist at the end -- the character herself is even surprised by her newfound desires.) I wanted them both to get off on each other's intelligences. And they do all that and more, in an incredibly sweet, loving, and sadomasochistic manner.

I love writing erotica that's explicitly queer but I also appreciate some ambiguousness in characters such that a myriad of vastly different types of readers can see themselves in my characters. So in this story I specifically left it open to interpretation whether the couple was queer or not. In my mind, they obviously are. But a straight couple could just as easily see themselves in these roles. That's actually why I usually do very little physical description of my characters. I want readers to be able to get sucked in and quickly put themselves in their shoes. More than anything I hope that readers get sucked in by good writing, an unconventional and enticing story, and the heat between the characters!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Free Story from Thrones of Desire on Cliterati


My entire story from Thrones of Desire (edited by Mitza Szereto for Cleis Press) appears to be posted here. Go for it! Flesh and Stone--gladiators, submission, magic, f/f sex, m/f sex--what's not to like?

http://www.cliterati.co.uk/2012/10/book-extract-thrones-of-desire/

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

PDF Version of Heiresses of Russ

Here's a link to an alternative way to read the anthology on your computer or e-reader:

http://www.bitmenu.com/widget/offer.html?offerId=4314&share=linkedin-twitter-google-pinterest-facebook


My Introduction to Heiresses of Russ 2012


Here's the closest you can come to finding out what's in this anthology, short of reading the reviews on Publisher's Weekly and Lambda Literary Review and The Future Fire.

Introduction

Joanna Russ, writer, feminist, keen-edged satirist and out lesbian, claimed many rights for us, among them the freedom to write about women who are the central actors in their own stories. Lesbian, straight, or bisexual, they can be fully-realized characters, not defined exclusively according to their gender.
Russ herself expressed suspicion of feminists who were not angry, as she certainly was in her seething and satirical The Female Man. Her own fiction, though, ranged widely, and also included The Adventures of Alyx with its blend of swashbuckling action, time-travel, science fiction, and complex layers of metafiction.
We know that there are still repressions to be fought. LGBT folks (and women in general) find ourselves facing continuing battles as well as some wars we thought had already been won. But Russ and other feminist writers have paved the way to a modern culture where there are bright areas of true progress, and speculative fiction is a primary example of this. We are not obliged now to be limited by anger, but can explore the strange and wonderful mazes of our imaginations wherever they may take us.
The focus of our Heiresses of Russ series is lesbian speculative fiction in short story form, and our mission is to highlight the breadth and quality of what has been published during the past year. We saw so much excellent work, in fact, that a single anthology couldn’t possibly contain it all, in so many styles, voices and far reaches of creative minds that the true uniting theme of our book turns out to be variety. This too is a gift from those who went before us, a breaking down of limitations and expectations.
The writers in this book portray being lesbian as a vital component of their protagonists, but not to the exclusion of all the variation possible for any characters in speculative fiction. Their plots may or may not hinge on the lesbian factor, but they are also about much more, with the unrestricted inventiveness and well-crafted prose of all good work in the genre.            
As a writer and editor of lesbian fiction, I often see new writers asking whether there are many markets that will consider work with lesbian or gay characters. I tell them that any publication these days worth considering is open to good writing, regardless of sexual orientation issues. This may be an overstatement, but not by much. Any relic of the dark ages who rejects a story with a horrified, “No, that’s pornography!” just because lesbian or gay characters are included—yes, I’ve had that happen in the past—does not represent a publication worth reading.
Take a look at the list of first publication for the stories we chose. Asimov’s; Realms of Fantasy; Strange Horizons; Expanded Horizons; Welcome to Bordertown (edited by Holly Black and Ellen Kushner;) Supernatural Noir (edited by Ellen Datlow;) Like a Treasure Found (from Circlet Press.)   If you’re familiar with science fiction and fantasy, you’ve seen these names. And then there are the anthologies specifically for lesbian work: Girls Who Bite from Cleis Press; Hellebore and Rue from Lethe Press; Steam Powered 1and 2 from Torquere; and Women of the Mean Streets from Bold Strokes Books. If you’re familiar with lesbian and gay fiction, you know these names. There are many more presses out there who accept, and in many cases solicit, stories with LGBT characters, as well as a few, like Lethe Press, whose primary focus is our own queer community.
We humans have a compulsion, possibly perverse, occasionally useful, to categorize everything. To say our theme is the wide variety of lesbian speculative fiction being published today doesn’t do much to let you know what you’ll find in Heiresses of Russ 2012. The only way to demonstrate what’s in store for you is to introduce the stories themselves, and for that, sorting them into categories familiar to readers may have its uses after all.
Most speculative fiction is divided into science fiction and fantasy, which is not to claim any universal agreement as to the definitions or differences. Our table of contents includes three clearly science fiction stories: “Feedback,” Lindy Cameron’s hard-edged novella of far-future technology, crime, and law enforcement; “God in the Sky,” An Owomoyela’s story of an unexplained astronomical phenomenon; and Sunny Moraine’s “The Thick Night,” in which African villagers in need of aid are sent automatons instead of Peace Corps workers to help them farm their land. But the last two can be read on different levels, with an automaton coming so close to personhood as to suggest something beyond the workings of science, and the mysterious light in the sky inspiring reflections on family, humanity, and religious traditions.
The remaining stories all have elements of fantasy, but in varying ways and degrees. Three fit under the broad tent of the Steampunk movement, combining retro-science with fantasy. Katherine Fabian’s “In Orbit” deals with the construction of orreries as balance wheels for the creation of golems. “Amphitrite” by S.L. Knapp solves the problem of mermaids in the Caribbean who lure men with their songs, and then devour them, by permitting only female submarine pilots. And in “To Follow the Waves,” Amal El-Mohtar’s protagonist imbues crystals with dreams-made-to-order by means of the traditional art of gem-cutting.
At least one piece could be read as urban fantasy. David D. Levine’s “Tides of the Heart” features a plumber who possesses superpowers when it comes to water in pipes, and rescues a figure from classical mythology (with the aid of new laws on same-sex marriage.) Another, Emily Moreton’s “Daniel,” is firmly in the traditional pirate-tale corner, with weather-magic thrown in. Desirina Malkovitch’s “Thirteen Incantations,” with two teenaged girls who sample magical memory spells formulated into exquisite (and exquisitely described) perfumes, could easily be included in a YA anthology, although it would be a shame to limit it to that audience.
“Out of the Strong Came Forth Sweetness” by Lisa Nohealani Morton is harder to categorize. There are elements of biblical allegory, made clear by the title; far future science fiction, with spaceports and law-enforcement “Angels” wearing technological wings and laser eyes in a repressive dystopian culture; and witchcraft, with a protagonist who gains strength from the hair she cuts and styles so skillfully for her customers. Then, in “Ours Is the Prettiest,” Nalo Hopkinson creates an aura of desperate carnival gaiety and an “other world” that may fit into what Delia Sherman, one of the editors of the Borderland series of anthologies, terms the “interstitial” mode, falling between, rather than within, familiar boundaries.
The vampire story subgenre is represented in “La Caida” by Anna Meadows, with traditional tropes left behind in this story of a fallen angel and a family of sisters in Mexico with their own tradition of using their inherited taste for blood to punish the evil rather than corrupt the good. This could have been classed as horror, but is instead, in its own idiosyncratic fashion, sweet and uplifting.
This brings us to the actual supernatural horror department. Two of our authors contributed pieces that are arguably horror, but their similarity ends there. Laird Barron’s "The Carrion Gods in Their Heaven” fits into the werewolf subgenre, achieving its effect with a brooding atmosphere and an accumulation of details creating a sense of impending and inevitable doom, while Steve Berman in D Is for Delicious wields a superbly keen and macabre wit to show a retired schoolteacher’s discovery of the benefits of being a witch. One story evokes shivers of foreboding; the other induces guilty laughter combined with visceral shudders.
So there you have the bare-bones tour of the stories in all their complex variety. The quality of the writing itself is even more impressive. Lyrical or somber, mannered or transparent, lush with imagery or stark in effect, witty, poignant, realistic, seductive, even numinous at times; whatever their stories demand, these writers supply with skill and creativity.
You may have noticed that I included “seductive” in that list. Yes, there are a few erotic elements, although most are subtle. Lesbian themes don’t automatically involve sex, but they certainly don’t preclude it. Several of the stories also include elements of romance, no more nor less than can be found in speculative fiction in general, and not by any means the “cookie-cutter” variety so often attributed, rightly or wrongly, to lesbian fiction.
What Joanna Russ and our other feminist forbears might find lacking is political content, but I think they’d catch the subtle metaphorical references. I was struck by the fact that when repressive societies were depicted in these stories, they tended to be obsessed with railing against witchcraft and magic to the near-exclusion of getting hot and bothered about lesbian relationships. If they noticed them at all, they considered them part of the evils of magic. With our real-life history of women who transgressed societal boundaries being persecuted as witches, the symbolism is clear enough.
For all my talk of variety and writing skill and freedom from outdated constrictions and expectations, the fundamental purpose of fiction is to be enjoyed by its readers. Our worthy mission was to highlight the breadth and quality of lesbian speculative fiction published during the past year, but our even higher purpose has been to provide a book that any readers with a taste for quality science fiction, fantasy, horror, and all their permutations will enjoy.
A special note for all the lesbians who tell me how hard it is to find literate, engrossing speculative fiction stories with fully-developed lesbian characters:
Here you go. I hope you enjoy the trip.

Connie Wilkins
Amherst, MA
Summer 2012


       

Monday, October 1, 2012

Now for Something Completely Different...


(Cue the gratuitous Monty Python intonation.)

Seriously, I'm thrilled that one of my alter-ego's kid's stories from way back is being reprinted in an anthology raising funds for a wildlife refuge for big cats in Arkansas. There are actually two anthos, Wild at Heart 1 (for adults) and Wild at Heart 2 (YA), and mine is the lead-off piece for antho 2.

http://www.brindaberry.com/1/post/2012/09/revealing-wild-at-heart-covers.html


Friday, August 31, 2012

Excellent Reviews for Heiresses of Russ 2012

Two very nice reviews (so far) of Heiresses of Russ 2012, coming out October 1.




"Heiresses of Russ 2012: The Year’s Best Lesbian Speculative Fiction
Edited by Connie Wilkins and Steve Berman. Lethe, $18 trade paper (302p) ISBN 978-1-59021-159-5
The second installment of this annual series is high on adventure and lyrical storytelling, and low on identity angst and feminist politics... Showcasing a mix of authors, from superstars like Nalo Hopkinson to promising newcomers like S.L. Knapp, this solid, well-chosen collection will be enjoyed by genre fans of all genders and orientations." (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/27/2012


And another review on an sf/f site worth following. It's very nicely detailed, and gets more favorable as it goes along.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Interview with Disability Blogger Sharon Wachsler




Sharon Wachsler, one of my favorite writers, has just interviewed me on her disability-themed blog. We talked about my views as an editor about stories including characters with disabilities, and ranged widely over other aspects of writing and editing erotica. I had fun, and I hope you'll take a look. Sharon contributed two stories to Girl Crazy, and we've appeared together in various other books.

http://sharonwachsler.blogspot.com/2012/08/interview-with-sacchi-green-editor-of.html

Friday, August 17, 2012

Wild Girls, Wild Nights Coming Next Spring


There's a while to wait, but Wild Girls, Wild Nights: True Lesbian Sex Stories will be in the Cleis Press Spring catalog, so sometime between next March and May you'll get to read the lovely, poignant, gritty, witty, and utterly sexy stories by the writers in this Table of Contents.

Polvo de Hadas Anna Meadows
Hot Desert Nights Dawn McKay
The Daddy I Didn’t Know I Needed Angel Propps
The Corruption of the Innocent Pornographer Destiny Moon
Foxy and the Ridiculous Lesbian Orgy Allison Moon
Nurse Joan Cheyenne Blue
Ring of Roses Giselle Renarde
Cockadoodle Doo Dawn Mueller
Threesome H.M. Husley
Delinquents Catherine Paulssen
Risking It All Lynette Mae
Are You My Mommy? Danielle Mignon
Lost Batteries Jasmine Grimstead
Odds Catherine Henreid
Higher Learning Charlotte Dare
Kat’s House Mia Savage
Guise and Dolls Allison Wonderland
Tamago Anna Watson
Auto-Complete M. Marie
Insatiable Travel Itch Evan Mora

When I finally have a cover image to show, I'll post my introduction, too, to give you an idea of what's in store. Writers continue to amaze me, in the very best of ways.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Girl Crazy Reviewed

A terrific review of Girl Crazy! Go on, check out which stories made Harper Bliss's top ten (out of 69.) My writers will be especially interested. http://www.harperbliss.com/tag/sacchi-green/ 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Big plans for Women's Week in Provincetown in October!



October on Cape Cod can be lovely. On the other hand, it's often cold and rainy. Either way, I'm planning on being there for a couple of days, and doing the reading/book signing thing, along with more than a dozen other writers, including Girl Fever contributors Nat Burns and MJ Williamz.

The Golden Crown Literary Society Presents Our First Annual Event
Provincetown, MA, Women’s Week 2012

The Sage Inn 336 Commercial St in the Heart of Provincetown

Friday October 12th 11am-3pm

Authors in attendance: Lynn Ames, Karen Badger, Marianne Banks, Nat Burns, Sacchi Green (2012 Goldie Winner), Karen Kallmaker, Renee MacKenzie, Bev Prescott, Laurie Salzler and Joan Timberlake [and I hear six more have just been added.]

The authors will be available for a meet and greet, panel discussion with Q&A, and book readings and signings.

Refreshments will be served.

We will have a special appearance from our friends at Bywater Books in the afternoon: Georgia Beers, Sally Bellerose, Fay Jacobs, 2012 Trailblazer Award Winner Marianne K. Martin and 2012 Goldie Winner, Mari SanGiovanni.

Book signings will also be held at Women’s Craft on Thursday October 12th and Sat October 13th Details to follow.

Who's coming to Women's Week?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Dragons Are Forever

I have a story in Delilah Devlin's new lesbian shapeshifter anthology, She-shifters. I've just posted a blog on the site, sharing excerpts from my shapeshifter story, "The Dragon Descending," which is a prequel to my pirate story in Like a Treasure Found from Circlet Press, "The Pirate from the Sky." Go on over and post a comment to be entered to win a Kindle copy of my new Girl Fever anthology.

www.she-shifters.com

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Heiresses of Russ 2012

Heiresses of Russ 2012: the Year's Best Lesbian Speculative Fiction, edited by Connie Wilkins (my alter-ego) and Steve Berman, is all set to be published on October 12. Here's our line-up:


Heiresses of Russ 2012
Table of Contents

In Orbit---Katherine Fabian
La Caída---Anna Meadows
The Thick Night---Sunny Moraine
And Out of the Strong Came Forth Sweetness---Lisa Nohealani Morton
Daniel---Emily Moreton
Amphitrite---S.L. Knapp
The Tides of the Heart---David D. Levine
Feedback---Lindy Cameron
To Follow the Waves---Amal El-Mohtar
The Carrion Gods in Their Heaven---Laird Barron
Thirteen Incantations---Desirina Boskovich
D is for Delicious---Steve Berman
Ours is the Prettiest---Nalo Hopkinson
God in the Sky---An Owomoyela

And here's our cover!

When the publication date is closer, I'll post my introduction to give you a tour of all the wonderful stories.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Free Books for Review

In addition to my free book drawing for Girl Crazy, I'm offering free copies to the first three people who contact me at sacchigreen@gmail.com and state an intention of reviewing it online, Amazon, Goodreads, anywhere, for better or worse. The folks who came to our reading last Wednesday in NYC seemed to be getting a huge charge out if it.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Girl Fever: Free Book Drawing, plus NYC Reading

I'm giving away two free copies of Girl Fever: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex for Lesbians. Just comment here, or on my Facebook post, (Sacchi Green), or my Live Journal, (sacchig), and you'll be entered. I'll draw the names on June 15.

AND


On Wednesday, June 6th:

D.L. King, editor of The Harder She Comes: Butch/Femme Erotica is getting together with fellow editors Sacchi Green (“Girl Fever: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex for Lesbians”) and Sinclair Sexsmith (Say Please: Lesbian BDSM Erotica) to bring you a night of essential lesbian erotica. Join them and other favorite authors as they read from some of their hottest offerings to date. In the immortal words of Sinclair– “Is it getting warm in here?"

Readers will be Evan Mora, Rachel Kramer Bussel, Sinclair Sexsmith and DL King for The Harder She Comes andSacchi Green, Cha Cha White, Jennifer Baker and Dena Hankins for Girl Crazy.

http://bluestockings.com/events/

Girl Fever: The Writers Speak


Now, as promised long ago, I'm posting the lo-o-o-ng list of the author's bios, since there was no room in the book for that essential information. (A few have chosen to remain seductively silent.)

Girl Fever Is Here, and Spreading Fast! Catch It!

It's a book! Girl Fever: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex for Lesbians is now available on Amazon.com Girl Fever, and soon wherever you're lucky enough to have book stores with good taste.

The stories are short, but packed with sexy goodness. I posted the TOC and my introduction so long ago that I'm repeating them here, after a cut (except that cuts don't seem to be working.) In my next posts I'll give you writers' bios and news about a free book drawing.

Monday, April 30, 2012

The Harder She Comes is Comin' On Hard!




D.L. King's The Harder She Comes: Butch/Femme Erotica is at the top of the list of books I wish I'd written a story for, so I'm thrilled to host the first installment of its blog tour. Not only that, but there will be a reading from the book in NYC on June 6 at Bluestockings Books, and my new anthology Girl Fever will be sharing the fun.

 First up, of course, is D.L. herself.


You Are Here


Welcome to day 1 of the blog tour for The Harder She Comes: Butch Femme Erotica.

I can’t tell you how proud I am of this book.  I say that, and then I think, but what do I have to be proud of?  After all, I didn’t write any of the stories.  I just collected them and put them together.  So, it’s not so much that I’m proud (although I really am); it’s more that I feel privileged to have been entrusted with these stories; to have been given the chance to read them and gather them together for you.  And seriously, I’ve read each of them several times.  Now, all I have to do is look at the title and think to myself, oh yes, oh god, that one – I love that one! Or, that’s the one about the camping trip, it cracks me up.  Or, oh yeah, the one about the tamales, it brings tears to my eyes even after reading it as many times as I have. And, ooh, the Valentine gift, that one is so fucking hot – well, you get the picture.

These stories are important; they’re about us.  They are hot and sexy; they’re sweet and shocking; they’re all about heart and home and heat. You will find yourself between the covers of The Harder She Comes and you will be in awe of yourself and that, that is why I’m proud of this book.

D. L. King
NYC April 2012

Here’s the table of contents, and yes, you want this book.  I’m just sayin’…

1  Speakeasy * Evan Mora
2  Winner Take All * Andrea Dale
3  It’s So Peaceful Out Here * Elaine Miller
4  Manchester, 2000 * Stella Sandberg
5  Good Girl, Bad Girl * Sinclair Sexsmith
6  The Bucket List * Charlotte Dare
7  Happy Ending * Rachel Kramer Bussel
8  Tamales * Kathleen Bradean
9  Valentine * River Light
10 Birthday Butch * Teresa Noelle Roberts
11 Born To Ride * Beth Wylde
12 Channeling Charles Bukowski * Aimee Herman
13 Tits Down, Ass Up * Crystal Barela
14 Pound * Shanna Germain
15 Farmhand * Miel Rose
16 A Date With Sharon Tate * Valerie Alexander
17 Bienvenido * Anna Watson
18 This Is What I Want * CS Clark

Get your copy of The Harder She Comes: Butch Femme Erotica anywhere good books are sold.  To make it easier, you can get it from Amazon  or directly from Cleis Press .

Check out who’s coming up on the tour:

May 1  D. L. King  http://sacchi-green.blogspot.com/
May 2  Anna Watson  http://dlkingerotica.blogspot.com
May 3  Evan Mora  http://donutsdesires.blogspot.com/
May 4  River Light  http://sapphicplanet.com/index.php
May 5  Sinclair Sexsmith  http://www.sugarbutch.net/
May 6  Crystal Barela  http://kathleenbradean.blogspot.com/
May 7  CS Clark  http://bethwylde.wordpress.com/
May 8  Valerie Alexander   http://pomofreakshow.com/
May 9  Andrea Dale   http://lulalisbon.wordpress.com/
May 10  Beth Wylde  http://adrianakraft.com/blog/
May 11  Kathleen Bradean  http://cyvarwydd.blogspot.com/
May 12  Teresa Noelle Roberts  http://lisabetsarai.blogspot.com/
May 13  Shanna Germain  http://lantoniou.blogspot.com/
May 14  Charlotte Dare  http://madeofwords.com/posts/
May 15  Rachel Kramer Bussel  http://lustylady.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Even More Good News

Now I've learned that A Ride to Remember is also a finalist for the Golden Crown Literary Society award. I'd hoped to make it to their conference in June, but I have two readings and an awards ceremony coming up in the first week of June in NYC, and one in May, so I don't think I can be away again so close to those. My 92-year-old mother is in deteriorating health, and I spend a good deal of time going to help my father cope so they can stay in their home. As it is I'll have to line up extra help while I'm gone. More news about the readings soon, though.

And in even more good news, thanks to all the folks who voted for my story "Pirate from the Sky" on the Circlet Press poll. It worked! The story will be included in Fantastic Erotica: The Best of Circlet Press 2008-2012, due out in October. Nice nice nice! Thanks again!

As an aside, I'll mention that I wrote a prequel to that story (with much more dragon action) which will be in Delilah Devlin's She-Shifters (lesbian shapeshifter erotica) coming out from Cleis Press in July.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lambda Literary Award Finalists

Two of my books made the finalist list. In the same category! The ways of the Lambda Literary Awards are mysterious indeed. I am...overwhelmed. And amazed that several books I was sure should be finalists weren't.

For Lesbian Cops (Cleis Press) all the credit is due to the wonderful contributors. For my collection A Ride to Remember (Lethe Press), I'm hugely thrilled to have my own writing recognized.

The winners won't be known until the ceremony on June 4th in NYC, but however that comes out, I'm feeling, well, overwhelmed right now. I do think I'll make the trip to the city for the event, especially since I already have readings scheduled there for June 5th (for Kristina Wright's anthology Lustfully Ever After) and June 6th (for my newest anthology Girl Fever: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex for Lesbians and D.L. King's The Harder She Comes: Butch/Femme Erotica.) Both of these readings will be at Bluestockings Books, and you can be sure I'll be posting and prodding closer to the events.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Steamy story, humor, and free book drawing!

This is my big day on the Coming Together: Share the Love blogbash. Come on over to see my contribution to this excellent series of anthologies whose proceeds benefit charities. The middle half of my story "Seafood Cocktail" is posted as an excerpt, and I'm holding a drawing for a copy of any of my Cleis anthologies, so please come and comment. Even if the story squicks you out. But don't worry; I stopped the excerpt just short of any oyster abuse. http://lisabetsarai.blogspot.com/2012/02/sex-humor-and-oysters.html