Thursday, May 31, 2012

Call for Submissions: The Other Man (Gay Non-Fiction: Sex/Deception/Love/Betrayal)

This particular call for submissions caught my eye because it's looking for essays about "The Other Man."  Having spent a solid 10 years of my life as "The Other Woman," I understand the complexities of adulterous relationships and the like.  I think they tend to get painted much blacker than they deserve.

Anyhoo, here's the call:

*** Anthology Submissions Call ~ Permission to Forward ***


EDITOR: *Paul Alan Fahey
*DEADLINE:* August 31, 2012

*PLEASE NOTE:* Publisher has final right of refusal on all submissions. Payment made upon publication. Publication date is May 2013.

JMS Books LLC is seeking submissions of short personal essays from gay writers on the subject of "the other man" for an upcoming anthology entitled *THE OTHER MAN: 22 WRITERS UNCOVER THE TRUTH ABOUT SEX, DECEPTION, LOVE, AND BETRAYAL*.

Submissions should be non-fiction, previously unpublished, written in the first-person POV, and between 3,000 and 5,000 words in length. Shorter essays of exceptional merit will be considered. Essays should focus on the theme of "the other man" -- either being the other man, suffering the other man, or having their lives affected in some way by infidelity. The other man experience can also be a positive one that, in some way, makes a committed relationship even stronger after he passes through.

All types of stories are welcome, from light-hearted to serious. Authors selected to appear in the anthology will receive *$100* for their submission as well as *1 free copy* of the final book in both electronic and print formats. A portion of all profits (75%) will be donated to the IT GETS BETTER charity.

Established authors and newcomers alike are welcome.

Send completed essay and short bio (150 words) to the editor, Paul Alan Fahey, at *paul1189@sbcglobal .net*. Electronic submissions only. Final decisions will be made by the editor no later than November 2012. Publication is slated for May 2013 in both e-book and print formats.


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Elton John Glasses: Just For Fun

Remember lying in bed at night and listening to Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me back when you were too young to wonder if the title had a double meaning?  Remember the sweet snap-crackle-pop of vinyl as you closed your eyes and imagined dancing at your wedding with your new husband Elton John?  In matching silk gowns with white feathers boas?

What?  You didn't have that fantasy?  Huh.  Uhh... yeah, me neither.

Anyhoo, here are some awesome Elton glasses.  Just for fun.

(I tell you all my secrets, darlings. Don't go breaking my heart.)  

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

How Do You Measure It?

I originally wrote this post for one of my guest spots at Romance for the Rest of Us, which is Torquere Press' blog, but after breaking yet another mug (one of the blue ones--I only have one left in that set now) I figured it was a good time:

Remember that song from the musical Rent? 

Five-hundred-twenty-five-thousand-six-hundred minutes, Five-hundred-twenty-five-thousand-six-hundred moments so dear, Five-hundred-twenty-five-thousand-six-hundred minutes, How do you measure, measure a year?

I find myself singing that song in the kitchen.  Always the kitchen. Never the shower, never anywhere else, just the kitchen.  When I got to asking myself why, the answer was pretty obvious.

It's my dishes.

Every time I open the cupboard and look at my mish-mash of assorted bowls and dinner plates, I get feeling old.  Weird, right?  I guess I could have titled this blog post "What Makes You Feel Old?" but... it probably wouldn't have the same draw.

So, why do my dishes make me feel old?

Because I've been through so many sets.  I really don't feel old enough to be on my third (plus) set of dishes.  Part of the problem is that I'm a klutz and I've never owned a dishwasher.  I tend to drop dishes while I'm washing them.  That's the problem.  And when enough plates get broken... well, what's a girl to do?  You buy another set.

I bought my first set of dishes when I was a teenager, in anticipation of moving out of my mother's basement.  The set was called "Italian Bistro" and they cost me $9.99 at one of those kitchen stuff stores.

The second set, I bought in my twenties.  They were blue with kind of a raku-inspired glaze.  I think I got them at Sears and I think they were $39.99?  Something like that.  Almost all of those pieces have since cracked or chipped.

After the blue ones, I gave up buying sets.  Instead, I bought pottery from local artists.  That's why I have way more bowls than anything else.  Bowls are more common and usually cheaper than plates, when you're buying from potters.

Now every time I look into my cupboard, I don't just see dishes--I see a history.  I see years of buying and breaking, of disposing and accumulating until all I have to show for myself is an eclectic mess.  

And that's me in a nutshell--an eclectic mess.  I measure myself in mismatched dishes, in Band-Aids of various shapes and sizes with yellowed paper casings coming apart at the seams, in odd socks and old underwear, in books I've read and books I've written. 

How about love?
Seasons of love...

How do you measure, measure a year... or a life?

Giselle Renarde
Canada just got hotter!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

What's Up and What's Down in Book Promotion?

Quick question for all the authors in the house:

Compared to this time last year, how are you promoting your books differently?  Are there promotional efforts you made a year ago that you've since backed off?  Which efforts have you made for the first time or ramped up this year?

Here are my answers to the questions above. This is NOT marketing advice by any means, it's just on my mind at the moment.

What's down?

  1. Chats. I used to participate in a lot more chats than I do now.  As much as I love them, I find I spend all my time blabbing with other authors.  That's fun, but it eats up my entire day.  Also, truth be told, I often forget when they're happening, even if I put them on the calendar. My bad.
  2. Author interviews.  I would do more, but I have this sense (which is probably way off base) that everyone who ever wanted to interview me did so four years ago.  I also feel like I'm repetitive and boring and repetitive in interviews. ;-)

What's up?

  1. Twitter.  #OMG the time I spend on Twitter!  This should probably go in the blabbing with other authors category too, but let's look at marketing holistically for the sake of this post and say that online presence is in some way promotional.
  2. Blogging.  I post here at Donuts & Desires just about every day, which is up from maybe three or four times a week last year.  As for guest blogging?  I think I do more of that too but I haven't kept track.
  3. Spending Money!  Holy Mackerel, it's something I thought I'd never do (I am cheap as store brand ramen, people) but I decided to purchase a membership at Manic Readers.  It was affordable, so I thought what the hell, give it a go.  
  4. Being Organized.  I have a promotions checklist I go through every time a new book comes out. I have checklists for just about everything submissions-related as well, and it's making me feel much more on the ball than usual.  Now if somebody could just sort my mail for me, I'd be set. 
  5. Contacting Libraries.  I have a few mainstream titles (ebooks) available through Overdrive (Nobody Gets Lucky, Ugly Naked People, Love Again, and very soon Dennis and Dad), so one thing I did recently that I've never done before is write to libraries all across Canada (so far).  I just told them a bit about my titles and asked if they would like to carry the ebooks in their catalogues.  

That's all I can think of off the top of my head.

Your turn.  What's up, what's down?

Comment to your heart's content!
Giselle Renarde 

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Call for Submissions: Short Short Orgasm Erotica

The second you finish reading this post, start writing.


Because the deadline for this call for subs is June 1, 2012--and, trust me, you want to get in on this anthology edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel.  Well... I do, at least.

But I think you will too, because Rachel has mentioned on twitter (@raquelita) that she needs stories AND that she wants to devote 36 available slots to NEW authors.  (I'm pretty sure that's what she said--if I'm misquoting her, you all have my permission to mentally kick me in the shins)

I know a lot of yet-to-be-published authors get really frustrated, thinking they'll never catch a break.  If that's where you're at, or if you're past there and in the I'll-never-be-a-writer-so-fuck-it stage, why not try for this one?  Some authors get all huffy about our market being super-saturated, and it is, but I don't want new writers feeling dissuaded by bad attitudes.

Why not write something up for this call?  Rachel is looking at up to three stories per author.  Short shorts.  Nothing to lose.


Short Short Orgasm Erotica Anthology Call for Submissions (title TBA) Edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel
To be published by Cleis Press in 2013

Orgasm…let me count the ways! Editor Rachel Kramer Bussel is looking for short short stories of 1,200 words or less focused on the theme of orgasm. The more creative, varied and hot, the better. While these are extremely short stories, I still expect character development, exciting plots, and as many types of orgasms as possible. Surprise me! (For an excellent example of an offbeat orgasm story, see "Chemistry" by Velvet Moore in my anthology Orgasmic.) Sex toys, group sex, outdoor sex, masturbation, BDSM, roleplaying, dirty talk, anal sex, oral sex, exhibitionism, voyeurism, quickies, vacation sex—the sky's the limit. Orgasm should be either the focus of the story or play a major role. For an idea of the kinds of short stories I enjoy, see my previous anthologies Orgasmic and Gotta Have It: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex. Final book will contain a very wide range of types of orgasm, motivations, scenarios, etc. All genders and sexual orientations welcome. All characters must be over 18; no scat, incest or bestiality. No poetry. Original, unpublished stories only. 3 submissions maximum per author.

How to submit: Send double spaced Times or Times New Roman 12 point black font Word document (.doc or .docx) with pages numbered OR RTF of 1,200 words MAXIMUM. Note that this is a hard maximum and theme of the anthology and stories that are over 1,200 words will not be considered. Indent the first line of each paragraph half an inch and double space (regular double spacing, do not add extra lines between paragraphs or do any other irregular spacing). US grammar (double quotation marks around dialogue, etc.) required. Include your legal name (and pseudonym if applicable), mailing address to orgasmantho at If you are using a pseudonym, please provide your real name and pseudonym and make it clear which one you’d like to be credited as. You will receive a confirmation within 72 hours. I will get back to you by November 2012.

Payment: $20 and 1 copy of the book on publication

Deadline: June 1, 2012 (earlier submissions encouraged and preferred) 
(Hi guys, it's Giselle again.  I should mention this call for subs is reposted with permission, AND there are other calls at Rachel Kramer Bussel's website: 'K bye!)

Monday, May 21, 2012

FREE READ: Brand New Erotica~Before Goodnight

I make a huge effort to provide you darlings with quality FREE erotica, because I'm the sort of person who likes to get something for nothing every once in a while.

So I wrote this new story called "Before Goodnight" and it's available for you to read at Oysters & Chocolate.  It's never been seen in print or online.  From my brain to your... well, wherever.

Kim has moved back into her parents' house to save money for a down payment when she and fiance Elson buy their own home.  It's really put a cramp on their love life, considering Kim's parents truly believe she's still a virgin.  Yeah, there's phone sex.  This is how I do vanilla:

Before Goodnight. Read it now:


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Curvy Girls and Me

Today's post has been percolating ever since editor, erotica writer, and cupcake maven Rachel Kramer Bussel asked me to be part of her "Curvy Girls" book tour.  

I jumped at the opportunity to review Curvy Girls.  My girlfriend is self-proclaimedly "fat" and I love every delicious curve on her body.  I tend to be attracted to quirky curvy geek girls and artists.  I like curves.

And maybe that's because I don't have very many.

Even though I tend toward sex-bloggerism, I never writing about my body--about its response and action yes, but about its basic form? No.

And there's a reason for that.  In fact, I'm sharing thoughts and feelings with you today that I've never shared with anyone else.  Why?  Because even in my head it seems so "poor little rich girl."  I hope it doesn't sound that way to you.

As I waited for my review copy of Curvy Girls to arrive in the mail, I got... the fear.  I don't know if you're as generally paranoid as I am, but I have this ever-present fear that people are going say things that hurt or offend me.  So when I constructed in my mind what Curvy Girls was made of, I started to wonder/worry that maybe its method of elevating big women would be to denigrate small women.  

I am small.  I'm short.  I'm skinny.  I have the body of a 14-year-old boy waiting for a growth spurt.  I get the idea a lot of women who are bigger envy my body type, but throughout the years a lot of people have managed to make me feel really crappy about the way I look.

I've been told (repeatedly, by one of my sisters) that I look like a crack addict.  Others have told me my cheeks are too sallow, my belly curves the wrong way, they're grossed out by my ribs and my spine.  I look homeless.  I look like a kid.  I look anorexic--or better yet, I'm told that I am anorexic.  Or, "Are you anorexic?  So-and-so said you're anorexic. Are you sure?  All the girls in the lunchroom say you're anorexic." Sometimes it's phrased as a compliment, which I can't get my head around, and sometimes as an insult, and sometimes with grave concern for my health and well-being.

Even though none of these "well-meaning" (or not) jabs are true, guess what I see every time I look in the mirror?  A homeless anorexic 14-year-old crack addict.  I hate this shame I feel for a body I should rightly treasure.
"It just isn't healthy to have a body like yours."  

I bet that's one thing curvy girls and I have in common--the number of people who have decided we are not healthful.  They're so concerned about us, because our bodies aren't right, aren't normal, aren't aligned with their standard.

I know that's a lot of backstory for a book review, but it goes to show what deep emotional reach Rachel's book had for me.  Even before I'd laid eyes on the thing, it had already brought up this stir, and even the trepidation that I might encounter those familiar jabs about my body's inferiority.

The book arrived in the mail, and I dove right in.  The cover is gorgeous and I really like the typeface, paper weight and especially the black lace impression in the corner of the page at the start of each new story.  Aesthetics is important in a book.

And so is content.  The foreword by April Flores started this collection off eloquently and powerfully.  Her very first line spoke to the heart of me, as you'll understand after having read my preamble above: "For the longest time, we have been told the lie that being thin equals being beautiful, happy, and desirable."

Sommer Marsden's "Runner's Calves" is fun and fast (it's about runners, after all!), setting up what becomes almost a theme pairing throughout the anthology of a bigger woman with a thinner man.    

"Before the Autumn Queen" by Angela Caperton is sensual and literary, followed by the sexy threesome story "Champagne & Cheesecake" by A. M. Harnett, which made me laugh right off the bat with its mention of "victory tits."

"First Come, First Served" by Lolita Lopez is expertly voiced, and happens to speak to my fetishes for 1st person erotica and lines like "Would you come on my tits?"  Umm... yes, please.  "Small Packages" by Tenille Brown is infused with appreciation, worship, and lust for the curvy form.  

"Decadence" by Satia Welsh tripped me up a bit. Its multiple POVs, even during sex scenes, felt head-hoppy despite the section breaks.  The voicing in Nina Reyes's "Excuses" is excellent (I'm a sucker for 1st person present tense), and its impromptu photography session provides a playful backdrop for a cheeky and sly story.

"Recognition" by Salome Wilde and Talon Rihai is so relatable, so human, and lives up to its title so well my queer heart had to forgive the head-hopping.  By that point in the anthology, I needed some lesbian action. *smirk*  Speaking of relatable, Gwen Masters's character talking to herself in the mirror in "Passing the Time"? Spot on.  I've had many mirror conversations with myself.  Such a great story of frustration.

"First Date" by Louise Hooker was engaging as hell.  I love anything involving a webcam.  "At Last" by Jessica Lennox is letter-style lesbian confession erotica. The sparse dialogue was so apt and excellent I wished there had been more, though the ending was a little abrupt.

"Wenching" is brave piece by Justine Elyot, and took me where I wanted to go: to the heart of shame, the fire of it, and the phoenix rising (and in costumes!), all while confronting MY personal fear of being cast as: "Mean. Insufficient. Meager. Miserly."  Perhaps I ought to take offense, and instead I took each of those words as deserved slaps because, true or not, I've allowed myself to believe my body is my fate.

Starting with the title, "What Girls Are Made Of" by my fellow Torontonian Evan Mora reminded me of a story I once wrote called "Painted Nails and Puppy Dog Tails," with its strong butch/femme dynamic.  Of course, Evan's work kicks WAY more ass than mine.  This story... wow, truly a pleasure to read.  Just what my queer heart was begging for!

"Appetite" by Elizabeth Coldwell is relatable from the get-go (I hate it when other customers stare at my groceries and then look at me like they're in deep analysis mode--makes me so self-conscious!).  The piece uses fat and cheap fabrics assertively, saying "this is sexy" like it's challenging us to disagree.    There's fire here.  And then... then it's time for the BIG treat.

Kristina Wright's "In the Early Morning Light" hit me with its sheer honesty.  This is my favourite sort of writing.  This is literary erotica at its best: engaging on the very deepest level, plain-spoken, wonderful.  The next time I hear someone bad-mouthing the genre of erotica, I will refer them to this story because it is quite simply perfect.

"See and Be Seen" by Arlette Brand takes everyday eroticism and pushes it to the boundaries of comfort, bringing up questions of "should" and propriety.  Rachel Kramer Bussel's "Big Girls Do Cry" takes a theme of "wanting" and makes you squirm while you wait, setting up a promise of kink, of spankings to come.  I was lying on my couch reading this story, and it actually made my toes curl and my feet kick against the cushion because I wanted that promise fulfilled.  That's what a good spanking story's all about.

Isabelle Gray's "Marked" is artful, but I'd have loved to feel more pain in a story about new tattoos.  And at the end is "Happy Ending" by Donna George Storey, a story I found relatable on the "guy" side--the jealousy, possessiveness, lust, and utter inability to articulate how attractive I find my girl in a way she can properly hear.  Ultimately this story, and I think the book as a whole, describes a journey toward acceptance.  For Ellie it's about learning to love her "big ass," for me it's learning to see my Self in the mirror instead of a crack addict, or any of the other names I've been called. 

What I took away from Curvy Girls was the idea that we pretty much all have things about our bodies we'd like to change.  We all cater to our shame, and the best way out of it is to celebrate what we have--without disparaging the bodies of others.  

Because there are people in those bodies too. 

Follow the Curvy Girls virtual book tour at 


Friday, May 18, 2012

Erotica, Volume 12: Sex in Public / Voyeurism / Master and Slave

So, I've mentioned I have stories included in some of editor Barbara Cardy's new "Lesbian Erotica" mini-anthologies (published by Robinson--the "Mammoth Book of..." people), but I don't think I told you I contributed to the "Erotica" series as well.

Erotica, Volume 12: Sex in Public / Voyeurism / Master and Slave / (a Mammoth Erotica Short) includes my story "The Big Reveal" which is one of those cute and funnies that also happens to be full of public sex:

Product Description
When her car breaks down during the hottest day of the summer Faith Ellis is forced to take a slow train to her destination. Realising too late that she has left her purse at home she is saved from the humiliation of being thrown off the train by a handsome stranger. But how will she be able to repay him?
GERTRUDE by M. Christian
Quite naturally, his neighbours didn't like Beethoven blasted out at full volume, so our police officer heroine is sent to deal with what should have been a routine noise complaint. Noting some rather rude magazines and a well used whip, she's asked if she likes to play . . . Now, assaulting a police officer would normally get you into an awful lot of trouble . . .
THE BIG REVEAL by Giselle Renarde
A romantic, but very sexy story for Marisa and Tariq. Falling in love at first sight (although both have very different versions of when that was) and with their first baby on the way, Marisa's hormones are soaring, in the elevator, in the park . . . Will Tariq ever be able to satisfy her needs . . .      

This mini anthology is only $0.99. Seriously!  You can't lose.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

New Anthology: Tricks For Kicks

I'm really bad at keeping track of when anthologies come out.  Apparently (according to the Amazon page), Tricks for Kicks was released over a month ago.  Well, I guess I slept through April, because I didn't know.

Tricks for Kicks is an erotic anthology that focuses on prostitution.  If you like a good sex-for-money story... well, here you go!  Here's the blurb:

Sometimes, the best sex comes with rewards...

Ever had the urge to pay for your thrills? The characters in this collection have, but it’s not just money that changes hands when these lovers go all the way. Pimps and prostitutes, gigolos and gold-diggers are all to be found enjoying Tricks For Kicks. And let’s not forget the boys and girls of the vice squad, whose intentions are often just as dishonourable as the hookers they’re arresting.

From girls who’ll do anything for that special piece of jewellery to the confessions of the woman running the best little whorehouse in town, here are twenty tales of sex for money – and other benefits.

Sex sells – and just look who’s buying ...

So that's what this anthology's all about.

But here's what a duh-duh-duh I've become lately: I looked this antho up on Amazon, and as you'll notice, my name isn't listed under authors.  So I was like... wait, did I contribute a story to this book?  I think so... YES, because they PAID me... so I guess they ran out of space under authors (maybe there's a limit to how many they can add on the Amazon page, I don't know) but it was still driving me nuts that I couldn't for the life of me remember WHICH story of mine was included.

This happens all the time these days.  Somebody mentions an upcoming Cleis or Xcite antho and I think "Oh yeah, I have a story in that" but do you think I can remember off the top of my head what story of mine appears in it?  It's bad!  I have to look it up every time.

So I looked up which of my stories appears in Trick for Kicks, and it happens to be a really snarky, bratty, hot BDSM "Mercy" story.  Mercy stories are pieces featuring Mercedes and a man named Simon--he's married to someone else, and Mercedes used to hang out with him or whatever (if hanging out=sex) but now she's engaged to another guy and Simon is so desperate for her luscious body he's actually paying her for sex.  And sometimes, man, does it get crazy!

Show No Mercy:

Mercedes and Simon's sex life was never this good back when they were a lovey-dovey couple.  Now that he's paying her for the pleasure, Simon knows what he wants and isn't afraid to demand it.  Mercedes kind of detests his entitled arrogance, but it arouses her to no end.  When Simon muses that he always wanted to see Mercedes with bigger boobs and insists she fill her camisole with two giant water balloon, she does as she's told.  When she sees herself like that, with humungous fake breasts, and feels their warm pressure against her flesh, she's ready for anything.  

To make a short story long (as my aunt always says), Tricks For Kicks DOES include my story Show No Mercy, and the anthology is available now from Amazon:


Saturday, May 12, 2012

Sweetheart Rolando has a New Cover, Xcite Books has a New Site

If you've enjoyed other erotic comedies I've written (like Goose Girl or Narcissist Seeks Narcissist), you might be interested in a strange little ebook called Sweetheart Rolando.

Sweetheart Rolando's been on the market for a few years, quietly sitting on the shelf, waiting for you to love it.  Now it has a brand new cover (above).  Cute, right?

Sweetheart Rolando
A humorous erotic fantasy by Giselle Renarde.
When Lily's wicked stepmother tries to chop off her feet, she must flee with her sweetheart Rolando. To outsmart the witch, Lily transforms into the flower that shares her name. But Rolando and the witch share a secret so shameful he leaves his lily to rot. Luckily, a passing shepherd brings her home only to discover her mysterious sexual abilities. Who will be wed when this story ends? Lily and the shepherd? Rolando and the witch? Or Lily and her sweetheart Rolando?

When I went to check it out on the publisher's website, I realized that Xcite Books has a new website as well.  Remember it used to be like erotica-romance-something?  Now it's --which is going to be a hell of a lot easier to remember, actually.

Looks like some of the Cocktales books got new covers, too.

The link to Sweetheart Rolando is here, if you're interested in checking it out:

And here's the Giselle Renarde page:

Xcite publishes quite a lot of my stuff and they're great to work with.  If you're an author you might want to check out the "Write for Xcite?" link at the top of their site.  They publish a lot of anthologies, both ebooks and print.


Monday, May 7, 2012

When the Day Starts Off Shitty...

You know those days when you roll out of bed in a dizzy haze and you think, "I didn't clean out the litter box yesterday."  And you feel like your cats are going to think you're a total jerk (though, hell, they probably already do--they're cats, after all) so you go straight to the box and start scooping. 

Now that you're holding a little bag of congealed cat waste, you remember that you washed out all your garbage cans last night and they're drying on your balcony and you're not going out there in your skimpy pyjamas because your neighbour often drinks his morning coffee on his balcony.

Right, so you put the little bag down on the bathroom tile just as StupidCat (everyone with multiple cats has one of these, I think) comes to check out the freshly cleaned litter.  You go to the bedroom to put on some real clothes, listening to StupidCat raking around in the litter with those nails you really must cut more often but you don't because he bites you when you try.

You've thrown on clothes, you're heading to the balcony, when StupidCat gets wind of where you're going.  Because, you see, there are baby pigeons on the balcony and he's desperate to get at them.  So you're walking through your living room, your cat streaks through your legs, tripping you up enough to feel badly for accidentally kicking him in the head, though not enough to actually fall.

When he races ahead of you, that's when you notice it: StupidCat didn't finish up in the litter box before getting distracted by the prospect of pigeon babies for breakfast.  He doesn't seem to realize it, but he's trailing poops and they've landed on your carpet and... oh, for the love of god... good thing you put on a pair of socks.

Some people hate cat stories, some people hate scat stories.  This one has it all.


Saturday, May 5, 2012

What I've Discovered About Planning Dates

My most recent discovery is that it's tricky to get the word out about a fundraiser benefitting LGBT youth when your primary promotional vehicle (namely Yahoo Groups) is acting screwy all week.

But that's not what this blog post is about--I just wanted to get a blatant plug in for my whole "$1 from Nanny State and Secret Confessions going to LGBT Youthline between May 1st and 7th" thing before I really got going.  (Click here for details!)

Moving on...

Tuesday was my four year anniversary with my girl Sweet.  My girl was working all day and I always do volunteer work Tuesday evenings, so we delayed gratification celebration until today.  (Yeah, that "gratification" needed to be crossed out, because we actually got gratified twice this week when we only had a little bit of time together. But I digress...)

In our relationship, it's my job to make plans.

Okay, I HATE making plans.

I get so stressed, but I've embraced both the "planner" role and the "payer" role in our relationship for complex reasons.  I have this mindset of "only the best for my girl," but there are times when, realistically, I can't afford the best.  Or maybe "the best" doesn't suit Sweet's taste.  We're both big theatre goers, but I love opera and she... uhh... doesn't.  I'm a symphony-aholic and she... uhh... isn't.

Beetlejuice was a seriously stupid cartoon.
Why am I citing it? 
Here's a super-random (lame) reference: Anyone remember that episode of the Beetlejuice cartoon series where Lydia's trying to teach Beetlejuice the whole "do unto others" idea, so he fills her room with beetles (I think?) because that's what HE would want someone to do for him? And, of course, Lydia freaks out because her room is full of beetles, but he doesn't understand why she's upset?

Yes, you ALL know exactly what I'm talking about.  You ALL dressed up as Lydia for Halloween two years in a row.  Right?  Or was that just me?

Anyway, my point is (yeah, get to the point Giselle) that what I want to give my partner isn't necessarily what she wants to receive.  Or maybe she would on a different day, in a different mood.

Beetlejuice the movie, on the other hand, kicked sandworm ass.
Is there anybody out there who DOESN'T want to make sweet love to Winona Ryder?
When Sweet got to my place today, I had all these windows open on my computer: we could go to Buddies in Bad Times (there's a strip spelling bee after hours!), we could check out a film down the street or a qu├ębecoise play at the Tarragon, or hot docs, or there's a gay Tennessee Williams play on Bloor West... there's so much to do in Toronto!

But Sweet sat down on my couch and "rested her eyes" because she'd had a tiring day.  I sat beside her head on the back of my couch and watched the pigeon mama and her two little chicks in their makeshift nest on my balcony.  I gave her a whole laundry list of options for the evening, but she kindly said no to everything.  

And for the first time since I started my "planning" frenzy, I actually relaxed. 

We ended up taking a long stroll and then walked up my street until we arrived at a restaurant we'd been to before.  We both have this weird "new is scary" quirk when it comes to restaurants, so sitting down at a familiar table and a known menu was just heaven.  Nothing we did was planned, nothing was pricey, and it was perfect.

So what have I discovered about planning dates?

When it feels like you're pushing it or making things way too complicated or spending too much money, you probably are.  Dates should be fun, and stress isn't fun.  Be fluid.  Things may not work out as planned, but never let the plan overshadow the person you're spending time with.  More than that, there are wonders in your own backyard. 


Thursday, May 3, 2012

Guest Post: The Harder She Comes Blog Tour with Evan Mora

First off, my thanks to Giselle for hosting me today! I think it’s especially fitting because, you know, she’s Canadian and I’m Canadian, and the Butch Femme Salon that’s the setting for my story Speakeasy is right here in my backyard (so to speak) in downtown Toronto.

When I saw D.L’s call for submissions, it didn’t take me long to figure out what I wanted to write. As far as inspiration goes, the awesome folks who organize the Salon and the equally awesome folks who attend the events provide it in spades. They’ve had themes ranging from Film Noir to Nerds & Jocks, from Leather & Lace to Fit for Duty (they’re on facebook – you should look ‘em up). And while my story is a work of fiction, I remember walking through the doors of the roaring ‘20’s edition of the Salon, and this much, at least, is true:

It feels illicit, even though it’s not. It feels like secret passwords and shady alleys, like I’m crossing the threshold into a throwback blending of a prohibition era speakeasy and a lesbian bar from the ‘50s. But even that doesn’t begin to describe the deliciousness of a scene where every masculine-of-centre flavor imaginable – butches, Daddies, papis, studs, aggressives, trans-folk and bois – are all dressed to the nines in their suits and ties, their wingtips shined and their fedoras creased just so. It’s enough to make a femme heart flutter.

It did, it does, and all of the stories in The Harder She Comes: Butch/Femme Erotica, will make your hearts (or other parts of your anatomy) flutter too. I’ve got my favourites, and in an anthology that showcases so many tremendous writers, you’ll no doubt have yours. So pick up a copy – you really, really should.
Here’s another excerpt from my story:
There’s a single unoccupied black leather armchair tucked deep into the shadows in the corner of the room, and Jay leads us unerringly toward it. Somehow I’m not surprised; although every other space is occupied, she strikes me as the kind of person who is used to having whatever she wants, whenever she wants it, and I thrill at the thought that right now, she wants me.
Jay sinks into the soft leather, looking up at me with an enigmatic smile. I dither a little bit, because I’m not entirely sure how I’m supposed to arrange myself across her lap. No matter what she may think, this isn’t something I do every day, let alone in front of an audience.

“Why don’t you straddle my lap, babydoll?” She says, and a blush steals into my cheeks, though I know she can’t see it in the low crimson light. I cast a glance around the room; there are three or four other couples kissing and petting on the sofas, and no one’s paying us the slightest attention.
“Don’t you worry about them baby,” she says, “they’re not worried about us.”
She’s right, and I know it, and she looks so goddamned sexy sprawled in that chair in that moment that I don’t think it would matter even if every eye in the room was on us, I’d still do exactly what she wanted me to do.
My knees sink into the warm leather on either side of her hips and I lower myself delicately onto her, all too aware of the heat emanating from between my thighs and the substantial bulge tucked into her well-tailored pants. This Daddy has come to the party packed and ready to play, and I stifle a moan against her shoulder when her hands settle on my hips and guide me more firmly on to her just as she rocks her hips upward beneath me.
“You see what you do to me, babydoll?” Jay whispers in my ear, her tongue swirling around the sensitive shell and then retreating, sending shivers down my spine. “You made your Daddy all hard.”
Jay’s hands are on the move, rounding the curve of my ass, squeezing tightly, venturing lower, to where my ass meets the tops of my thighs, and where the hem of my short flapper dress has come to rest. There’s an inch of creamy skin exposed above the tops of my garters, and Jay groans as she discovers both the flesh and the stockings.
“You’re a dirty little girl, aren’t you Evie?” Jay’s mouth is just beneath mine, and I have an almost obsessive need to kiss her, but I wait, like a good girl, while she strokes me with her hands and her words.
“Dressed up all nice and pretty on the outside, but underneath…” Oh fuck, I want to kiss her so badly… “Underneath, you’re just a little slut, aren’t you?”
My pussy feels heavy and swollen, engorged with blood and slick with the need to be filled.
“Hmm?” She’s prompting me.
“Yes…” Oh God, yes, I feel like a slut.
“Yes what?” She’s going to make me say it.
“I’m a slut, Daddy.” Why does it feel so much dirtier to say it out loud? “ I’m your slut, Daddy.”

Buy the book! Follow the tour! Here’s where it’s going next:
May 4  River Light
May 5  Sinclair Sexsmith
May 6  Crystal Barela
May 8  Valerie Alexander
May 9  Andrea Dale
May 10  Beth Wylde
May 11  Kathleen Bradean
May 12  Teresa Noelle Roberts
May 13  Shanna Germain
May 14  Charlotte Dare
May 15  Rachel Kramer Bussel
And don’t forget where it’s been:
May 1  D. L. King
May 2  Anna Watson

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Rainbow Socks are the Best Thing about this Video

Remember high school or university (or maybe even elementary school, if you were a procrastinator back then) when you'd pull an all-nighter working on some stupid project you knew you were going to fail anyway?

No?  Maybe that was just me.

Anyway, I was reminded of those long-ago days last night when I stayed up until 5 in the morning to make this video promoting Sweet's and my current fundraising effort.  I think of book trailers and the like as an automatic fail, because nobody really watches them.

So why make this little video?  I don't know.  I guess I just want to do everything in my power to promote our effort to raise money for LGBT Youthline.

Maybe you'll watch?  It's kind of fun: