Saturday, July 31, 2010

Emotional Safewords

Love isn't easy. We all know that.

In a committed relationship with a long-term partner, we know there are ups and downs. There are days when we're madly in love, there are days of ambivalence, and there are even those days of anger and frustration.

Of course, everybody's love life is different, but there are a number of commonalities. That's how we can relate one to another.

So, here's what's on my mind today, relationship-wise: Sometimes my girlfriend Sweet and I have arguments. You got me! We do! And if you follow me on twitter, you already get to hear all about them. LOL

But there are some arguments, even some conversations, that are just too hard to handle. There are places you and I and she and everybody knows, "I just can't go there." There are some things you can't talk about, even with the person closest to you. Maybe it's just in the moment. Maybe the moment will last for years. Either way, as a partner, one must be respectful of the other's wish for psychic and emotional space.

Sweet pushes me. Oh, does she ever! She has this constant need and desire to be right inside my head. I remember, after our very first date, thinking to myself, "Why does she need to know what I'm thinking at every moment?"

And now, finally, after all that build-up, I get to the topic of today's musings:

I'm not a BDSM practitioner (sorry to disappoint) but I do know a lot of people who live the BDSM lifestyle or work as professionals in the community. You know one thing I admire most about BDSM practitioners? They have safewords.

Says Wikipedia,
A safeword is a codeword or series of codewords that are sometimes used in BDSM for a submissive (or "bottom") to unambiguously communicate their physical or emotional state to a dominant (or "top"), typically when approaching, or crossing, a physical, emotional, or moral boundary. Some safewords are used to stop the scene outright, while others can communicate a willingness to continue, but at a reduced level of intensity.
So here's my idea to save my sanity (and yours too, if you're interested in retaining it): Emotional Safewords! A word partners can introduce when they arrive at a boundary in argument or conversation to bring the discussion to an immediate close.

Is it just me, or is this a kick-ass relationship idea? Is it juvenile? I need some feedback on this one. I shared the idea with Sweet, of course, and she looked at me funny before saying, "Sure, we can try it, but..." (The "but" part went on and on. I won't bore you)

Sweet's main concern is that I'll overuse our safeword. And, hell, that's a fair assessment on her part. I did mention she lives inside my head, right? She knows me pretty damn well. Even so, I think my emotional safeword idea deserves a chance.

"There's a difference between discomfort and pain," Sweet said at one point.

What comment could more perfectly draw us back to BDSM? Yes, there is a difference between discomfort and pain. That's where trust comes into the conversation. BDSM play requires an incredible amount of trust. Romantic relationships involve an incredible amount of trust. In order for my emotional safeword idea to work, Sweet and I need to trust that neither will use the word unless we're at a breaking point. It can't be used frivolously.

So, it's decided: I want to try out this emotional safeword idea and Sweet's willing to give it a go. Now all we need is a WORD! Sweet pitched Rumpelstiltskin, but--sorry, babe--I don't think so.

Many of this blog's readers are writers too. You know lots of words, right? I'm in need. What should Sweet and I use as our emotional safeword?

Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Attention Authors: Call for Submissions! "Uniform Behaviour"

Hello my lovelies! I came across this call for submissions from fellow author Lucy Felthouse and, with permission to forward granted, figured I'd pass it along! The following comes directly from her blog:

Uniform Behaviour
Steamy stories about men and women in uniform

Editor: Lucy Felthouse
Publisher: Um… me!
Deadline: 30th September 2010
Payment: To be determined – details below

I’ve wanted to edit an anthology for some time, but the right opportunity has never presented itself. So I thought, what the hell, I’ll do it myself! And what better subject matter for this erotic anthology than uniforms? It’s one of my favourite fantasies, and one I know many share.

I’m looking for heterosexual stories about men and women in uniform to be put into an eBook anthology. I want all kinds of uniforms, in varying scenarios. There can be one character in uniform or many, just as long as your story is erotic! I want to get seriously hot under the collar whilst reading your submissions. That’s it, really. Let your imaginations go wild!

Please stick to the usual rules, i.e. no underage sex, no non-consensual scenes, incest, bestiality and other yucky stuff. No poetry, please.

I will to select 25 stories for this anthology and then split the proceeds equally, dependent on what I receive from each outlet after they take their cut. I’d also like to donate money to Help for Heroes, a UK charity set up to help those wounded in current conflict. I see this working by effectively making the charity a 26th person. They’ll get the same cut as everyone else, which I’ll pay to them when the cash has hit a certain threshold (similarly to how authors will be paid).

You’ll have to bear with me on the nitty-gritty, as I haven’t done anything like this before, but I’m very excited about the project and can’t wait to see it come together. I’ll be submitting the eBook to Smashwords (and as a result will be pushing this out to Apple’s iBooks, the Sony Reader Store, Kobo and Barnes & Noble) 1RomanceEbooks and Amazon Kindle. If any of you have any other suggestions for sites which sell independent eBooks, please let me know on your submission email. I will endeavour to submit to them all. Naturally, the more outlets, the better!

When the eBook is released, any help on marketing and spreading the word will be gratefully received. I’d like to make this a success, for the sake of the lovely writers who are contributing, and for the brave servicemen and women who are currently at war.

How to submit: Send double-spaced Arial/Calibri 12 point black font Word or RTF document. Your story should be 1,500 – 4,000 words. Please indent the first line of each paragraph half an inch. Please include your word count, real name, pen name (if applicable), and 50 word or less bio in third person. I’ll also require the email address you use for your PayPal account, as this is how I will be paying you when I have myself received funds. You can submit as many stories as you like – within reason!

Please send your completed story to lucy (at) lucyfelthouse (dot) co (dot) uk. In the subject line, please write Submission for Uniform Behaviour, along with the title of your story and the uniform/s involved. I look forward to reading your stories! Closing date is 30th September. Providing I’m not totally swamped with stories, I’ll do my best to come back to you by the end of October. Any questions should also be directed to this email address.

ALSO: Please spread the word! Feel free to post this call on your own blogs/sites, Tweet about it, Facebook it, anything! The more the merrier!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Quick Six TNG with Vivian Vincent

1. Hi Vivian! First question: What does "vanilla" mean to you?

Safe, sweet romance with minimal explicit detail. More sensual than erotic love scenes.

2. Is there any moment from your life that you remember in slow motion?
Oddly enough, I remember when I was 3, I was hit by a car on Easter Sunday. We were at my great grandmother's house before going to my aunt's house for Easter dinner and my mom and dad told me and my brother to head to the car. We'd both been taught to stop and look both ways before crossing the road. Of course, I did, but (and I forgot to mention this) it was pouring down rain so visibility was limited. Heck, I was only 3 and the car I saw I thought was parked, but it wasn't. Thankfully he was moving slow enough to only give me minor injuries (and ruin my brand new Easter dress) on my chin, arms and legs (still got a scar on my right elbow!) My parents were hysterical, but what parents wouldn't be? I do remember the driver apologizing profusely, worried I'd been hurt worse and accompanying us to the hospital. Yeah, that whole event still replays in slow motion in my head to this day and it was nearly 40 years ago. (Oops, I just gave away my age! haha)

3. What's the most unsettling movie you've ever seen?
Leaving Las Vegas. Yes, an unusual choice, but I found myself yelling "ENOUGH ALREADY!" to Nicolas Cage's character quite a few times throughout the movie. Also, the first Final Destination movie. I saw that one in the theater and I found myself constantly looking over my shoulder afterwards.

4. If you had to get a tattoo on your face, what would you want it to look like?
If I HAD to? Well, I don't know. Something small (and hopefully relatively painless) Maybe a rose or something simple.

5. How many monkeys jumping on the bed?

None at the moment, I just tossed some bananas to them if they promised to behave! :)

6. Which of the books or stories you've written is your favourite?

Timeless Love Book 1: Reflections of a Stranger. (


Kenny Rosnoski finds himself having dreams of a beautiful young woman. He feels a connection to her and can't explain it because he's sure they've never met.

When he inherits an old house from his grandmother after her death, he decides to renovate it and discovers an old mirror in a room he'd never been in. After he sees the same woman from his dreams in his room, he goes to investigate, only to discover the mirror is a portal to another time and the woman is most definitely real--and living 150 years in the past!

Annica Miller was treated more like a servant than a daughter by her own mother. She spends time in her room to try and escape her mother's harsh treatment. When she discovers the magic of the mirror in her room, she uses it as a way to hide away from her own life. Little does she know she'll meet the man of her dreams--a man who lives 150 years in the future!

Thanks for the interview, Vivian! A significant number of authors have mentioned a car accident in answer to the "slow motion" question. Evil cars! ;-)

I hope you're enjoying great sales with "Reflections of a Stranger." It sounds like a great book! The blurb reminded me of a novella I wrote called "The Rococo Room" about a girl who enters the world of a painting and finds the man of her dream inside. Mine doesn't come out until...hmm...May of next year? Oh, it's so long to wait!

Thanks again!
Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

NEW RELEASE! Ugly Naked People

Get ready to be shocked when I say that my new release, UGLY NAKED PEOPLE, is not a work of erotic fiction.

Well, with a title like UGLY NAKED PEOPLE, maybe that's not so surprising after all. I mean, who wants to read about ugly people going at it? LOL This new e-book from Untreed Reads is, in fact, the very first non-erotic story I've had published. Sure, I've had a few LGBT "romance" stories published, but this one is a whole 'nother kettle of fish. It's lesbian literary fiction.

So, if UGLY NAKED PEOPLE isn't about an ugly naked beast with two backs, what is it about?

Ugly Naked People

By: Giselle Renarde | Other books by Giselle Renarde
Published By: Untreed Reads Publishing, LLC
ISBN # 9781452443492
Word Count: 2,661

Categories: Lesbian Literature Short Stories

Rave is concerned about her girlfriend Astrid's rapidly declining weight and health. As Astrid's eating disorder begins to take its toll on the couple's relationship, Rave hopes that a dramatic move on her part will save both Astrid and the future they could have together.

You can buy UGLY NAKED PEOPLE now from just about any reputable seller of ebooks, including Smashwords, AllRomance ebooks, and many others.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Quick Six TNG with Barrie Abalard

1. Hi Barrie! First off, what does "vanilla" mean to you?

Boring, missionary-position only sex, "tab A into slot B". Not that the missionary position is bad... just that I don't like to be limited to it, or limited to sex where there's no BDSM, spanking, chocolate syrup, risk of discovery, etc. ;-) To me, limitations are vanilla.

2. Is there any moment from your life that you remember in slow motion?

My bad car accident in 1996. I will never forget it, though at times I wish I could. Contrary to popular belief, my life did not pass before my eyes. I was simply pissed that I thought I would die without having lived to do everything I wanted!

3. What's the most unsettling movie you've ever seen?

Kubrick's "A Clockwork Orange." Brilliant, but quite disturbing. A great commentary on violence in society and "the government giveth, the government taketh away..."

4. If you had to get a tattoo on your face, what would you want it to look like?

Umm, a beauty mark? Something as small as possible! (I don't really want a tattoo on my face--I prefer a more private location, like maybe under the fold of my butt...)

5. How many monkeys jumping on the bed?

None. Once monkeys are jumping, they'll start throwing excrement at any time. Though monkeys can be fun at times. (Cue Jonathan Coulton's "My Monkey." Coulton's one of my faves.)

6. Which of the books or stories you've written is your favourite?

"Love on the Air", possibly the world's worst title but I never could think of anything better. (Sometimes I suck at titles, LOL.) I love the characters, especially Warren, the radio station's engineer. Now there's a hard man who would be good to find! It's told in a somewhat disjointed fashion on purpose (I was trying out an edgy story-telling technique--I like avant-garde, so sue me), but I still love it. Writing it was pure joy--it has geeks and radio in it, two of my favorite things, along with lots of spanking and anal play, some of it quite harsh, merging into pain slut territory. Not your traditional erotic romance, but I love writing quirky tales.


Anne Bailey is recovering from twenty-plus years of unhappy marriage to Harold Leibovich, the man whom she'd thought was her soul mate back at MIT. After Anne relocates from Boston to work at Georgia radio station WTPD as its program director, she finds plenty of spanking, submission, and love-making with software guru Ron Gibbs, a man with his own sad romance in his past. But Anne's fellow employee Warren Clay, WTPD's funny, brilliant chief engineer, manages to work his way into Anne's heart, even though loving him means one of them will have to work elsewhere. Will Anne choose Warren (who has his own secret past), Ron, or Harold, the ex who shows up on her doorstep with a proposition?

Mature subject matter for adults only.44,390 words.

OMG I suck at titles too! (Though "Love on the Air" doesn't sound sucky to me) With titles, I find I either have to have the brilliant title before I write the story (often before I even conceptualize the story) or else the brilliant title never comes. It really is defeating to write fifteen, twenty, forty thousand words and not be able to find those two to five perfect words to sum it all up. Argh!
Also...three cheers for spanking and anal play!!!
Thanks for the interview,

Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Bed of One's Own (or A Room of One's Onion)

Today I got back from two weeks away and GOD am I glad for the solitude!

This past week, I vacationed with family. Siblings...parents...that sort of thing. You know what I remembered as I spent twenty four hours a day, seven days a week with my family? I remembered why I do not live with, in, on, around, or in the vague vicinity of my family. Don't get me wrong--I do love them! I do...but...but...well, there's only so much family I can handle. This week, I went a little overboard and now I'm feeling the consequences.

It feels a lot like a hangover.

The week before last, I stayed at my girlfriend's house. I love her too. I do...(can you see where this is going?)...and I can spend much more time with her than with my family before I peak in annoyance...but...but...well, Sweet's house is very much her house. It isn't my space. If I'm loading the dishwasher the wrong way, I'm going to hear about it. And, "Why are you chopping the onion like that? No, no. Give me the knife. I'll show you how..."


I do know how to chop an onion. I've done it before, with relatively minor consequences. I'm in my own home, where I can chop onions however I damn well please and load the dishwasher...well, actually, I don't have a dishwasher, so I don't need to worry about that part. But the point is that I'm back in my own space, and not a moment too soon.

I love the people in my life. I love my friends, my family, and most of all my pernickety girlfriend who must have onions chopped just so. Even though I love all these people, I don't want to live with a single one of them. Call me a hermit, but I would go crazy without my solitude.

Virginia Woolf had her room. I have my bed. Yes, I do share it with cats, but cats are much less annoying than people. I'll tell you a secret--I've never liked sharing a bed with anyone. I much prefer sleeping alone.

Waking up beside Sweet is pleasant. I do enjoy watching her dream. Her face is so perfectly beautiful when she's at rest. All the same, I could do without the snoring, the excess body heat, and the ridiculously bad music they play on the radio station she insists on waking up to.

Lone wolf...hermit...crazy cat me what you will, but I believe in having a bed of one's own.

Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Promo Opportunity for Authors

Hi Authors!

We're all constantly in search for the next promo opportunity, right? Well, look no further!

***** Permission To Forward Granted *****

FREE Promotional Opportunity for all ROMANCE authors.

D. Renee Bagby Presents First Chapters

This blog is dedicated to showcasing the first chapter of romance from every
sub-genre. Also included in the post are the cover, the author's URL, a
short blurb, and buy links.

All lengths, heat levels, and relationship types are welcome. Simply follow
the guidelines to submit:

Please please please, remember to read the submissions guidelines so I can
post your chapter as quickly and painlessly as possible. The above link also
features a FAQ that should answer most every question an author could have.

Wait... there's more.

Each month is a contest to judge the best cover, the best first line, the
best last line, and the best overall first chapter of the previous month's
posts (ie - vote for April's posts in May). Voters are entered to win prizes
and the winning authors in each category have their cover showcased (with a
link back to the chapter post) in the sidebar of the blog for the entirety
of the month following the contest.

All this and it's free too. :)

I look forward to hearing from you,

------------ ------
D. Renee Bagby
Building New Realms of Passion...

Zenobia Renquist
Discover Different and Unique Romance

********* Permission to Forward Granted ***********

Attention Authors: Call for Submissions! "Oil & Water"

Hellooooooooooooo Authors!

Another Call for submissions I saw and thought I'd pass along:


Oil and Water...and Other Things That Don't Mix Anthology

All proceeds from the anthology will go to a designated, registered
charity (or charities) dedicated to help areas directly affected by the

We are looking for pieces that run the gamut of styles and emotions.
This may be a disaster, but all is not lost. Pieces can be thought
provoking, but we also want pieces that can bring a smile and be uplifting.

Although this anthology is to benefit the Gulf Coast clean up,
submissions do not have to take place in the South—but it doesn’t hurt!

THEME: Conflict. Things/people that don't work well together. Resolution
is optional.

NEEDS: Short stories, essays

GENRE: Any (non-erotic) . Non-fiction, fiction, from humor to horror and
everything in between. We want the best example of what you can do
within the theme.

Authors with items accepted into the anthology will receive a contract.

For original works, we are asking for 6 months exclusive use from the
time of publication.

We can take reprints ONLY if the author provides written proof that they
have the right to submit the work into the anthology and will give
credit to the original publisher/publicati on.

WORD COUNT: up to 5,000.


PAYMENT: 1 contributor copy. Additional copies can be purchased at discount.

Please include with your submission your:

Legal Name
Pen name (if applicable)
Mailing address
email address
blog and/or website(s)

Include a short bio (50-100 words max.)

Include the following statement in your email submission:
“I declare that [TITLE] is my original work, and I have complete
ownership and authority to submit this work to LL-Publications.”

Please send your submission to: anthology(at) ll-publications. com

Zetta Brown
Editor-in-Chief, LL-Publications
http://www.ll- publications. com
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