Superlative Speculative Erotica

Welcome to the summer of 2018? Dear Reader, I hope your summer is going well…. the state of things in the USA, unfortunately, leave much to be desired.

This isn’t a political blog — except queer voices are political. Diverse sexuality is political.

So I’m thrilled to announce that Superlative Speculative Erotica: The Best of Circlet Press 2012-2017 is now available.  My story, “Deflowered”, is included.

 

The Circlet staff put together a short list, and then Circlet’s Kickstarter and Patreon supporters voted for which stories to include.  So it’s really an honor (and a boost to the ego) to be included alongside authors I like and admire such as Annabeth Leong, Michael M. Jones, Nobilis Reed, Julie Cox and so many others.  I’ve been reading this collection, and it’s amazing.  I’ll have a full review for you soon, but if you’re looking for a hot, diverse and entertaining collection of stories, I guarantee you’ll enjoy Superlative Speculative Erotica.

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“Deflowered” Blooms

Dear Readers, it’s been a while.  I hope 2018 is treating you kindly and you are remembering to treating yourself with kindness, too.

While I was digressing, my story “Deflowered” came out in Circlet Press’ anthology A Beastly Affair.  The other stories in this very fun, sexy collection vary from Annabeth Leong’s “weird west” adventure “Bete Noire” through science fiction and urban fantasy, with a couple fun, gay re-tellings of the familiar fairy tale before getting to my tale.  I’ll quote editor J. Blackmore’s description of “Deflowered” from the introduction:

“It’s silly and hot and it definitely, definintely, takes place in the Disney version of the Beast’s castle, but with one very major, and critical difference.”

Deflowered” was also selected to be read as part of Circlet’s partnership with the Nobilis Erotica podcast.  Read by the amazing Veronica Giguere, I’m honored to be in company with Julie Cox, Thomas S. Roche and so many others. (They’re rapidly approaching episode 400!)  If you enjoy audio stories, check out the Nobilis Erotica Podcast site!

Finally, “Deflowered” was selected to appear in Circlet Press’ most recent best of anthology. Superlative Speculative Erotica: The Best of Circlet Press 2012-2017, will be out within a month.  Circlet supporters via their Kickstarter or Patreon campaigns voted on which stories to include, so it’s even more on an honor to know that people are reading and enjoying it.

“Deflowered” started as a pansexual romp paying homage to and tearing up references to fairy tales that are related to Beauty and the Beast, with, yes a dose of Disney.  It’s super exciting that it’s had such a great reception.

Decompress from Halloween with a Sweet, Sexy Ghost Story by Terry Poole

Had enough of spooks but missing the Halloween vibe already?  Seeing is Believing by Terry Poole is a sweet, sexy M/M paranormal romance ghost story that I enjoyed quite a bit.

Romance writer Max Cooke is celebrating a movie deal for his books when he witnesses an attack on a stranger in an alley.  After calling the police, he rushes to check on the stranger — who dies in his arms, leaving him inexplicably heartbroken.

The murdered man was a police detective, Nick Horvath.  The next day, Nick turns up  in Max’s bedroom and the two begin a delicate dance as they navigate the reality of Nick’s special state of existence and the bond he has with Max.  Nick is only solid when he touches Max, convenient as they overcome initial misunderstandings and learn their attraction is mutual.

Poole doesn’t linger on the angst; while Nick has some trouble adjusting to his semi-corporeal state it isn’t long before he’s making a move on Max.  Max meanwhile, is scarred by his experiences with an abusive ex and takes some gentle coaxing to realize the handsome former detective wants him for himself and not just for convenience.  Once the couple get together, the sex scenes are hot and varied and show the couple’s growing affection.

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Like a Spell – Fire — and Building a contemporary fantasy world

Passage, Performance, Passion,” out now in the Like a Spell 2 — Fire — anthology, is my third story set in the same urban/contemporary fantasy world.  It’s been a lot of fun building a world where the species and rules are consistent, even though each story stands on its own.

A note on terminology:  People are more familiar with the term “urban fantasy”, but my stories aren’t focused on a particular city so technically they don’t fit into that sub-genre.  Contemporary fantasy, as they are fantasy stories in the contemporary world, is more accurate.  

 

I digress. On the occasion of the third story published in this world, I thought I’d share a little bit about the history of the world’s creation, what ties the stories together, and some ideas for the future.  

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Like a Spell 2 Out October 12th — and a Circlet Press Kickstarter!

I just heard the news and had to share it:  Like A Spell 2, containing my story “Passage, Performance, Passion”  is due out in less than two weeks.

Publication date is October 12th! 

It’s been a long journey for this story, but I really love it!  It’s also set in the same universe as “Drink to Seal the Bond” from the Coffee: Hot anthology.  Will the characters in these two stories ever meet?  Time will tell!

To keep the diverse and sexy stories like those in Like a Spell going, Circlet Press is running a Kickstarter campaign to fund it’s 2018 run of anthologies, including a 25th Anniversary anthology.  Please check it out:

The Building Magic of “Like a Spell”

By Celine Nadeau, https://www.flickr.com/photos/celinet/52894295/ Used under Creative Commons License (CC BY-SA 2.0)Magic and eroticism go hand in hand, don’t they?  In late 2015, Circlet Press put out a call for submissions for Like a Spell, erotic tales of magic.

Is anyone surprised that they got a lot of submissions?  They got so many submissions, they decided to publish them as four books.  Like a Spell: Earth, covers lesbian (f/f) encounters, and it’s out now!

My story, “Passage, Performance, Passion,” will be in the Like a Spell: Fire volume covering gay (m/m) stories, and should be out in October.  I read the first scene for the Nobilis Erotica podcast when he covered Circlet’s #porncamp in 2016 (my reading is about 20 minutes in).  The remaining two volumes, Air (heterosexual encounters) and Water (multiple partners) will be out at the end of 2017 and in early 2018.

I’ll tease more as the Fire release gets closer, but a reminder that supporters of Circlet Press through their Patreon campaign will get the books early!

 

Photo credit:  “Fire” by Celine Nadeau
Used under a Creative Commons License (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Misunderstood Monster: A Meditation and a Giveaway

Happy Spring-ish time!  In honor of the Beauty and the Beast movie, I’m giving away a paperback of Forgotten Menagerie. Skip to the end of the entry on how to enter.

Disney’s live action “Beauty and the Beast” opened on March 17th to mixed reviews but a strong showing at the box office and it’s still doing very well. I haven’t seen it yet, so take my thoughts in that context. A review I read balked at the added exposition and at giving more back story to the characters. I’ll leave it up to those who’ve seen it to decide if Disney’s approach worked. But it’s vital that the Beast be not just a monster, but a misunderstood monster, so that we can better accept Belle’s affection for him.

There are many applications for the concept of the “misunderstood monster.” Labeling the “other” a monster has a long history (is perhaps older than history). Recognizing that stereotypes and propaganda don’t paint a reliable picture inspires us to understand the monster — usually recognizing that they’re not really a monster at all.

On the flip side, the misunderstood monster could be someone who appears legitimately evil from our vantage point but who considers their motives or purpose to be noble, to be misunderstood. Learning about their purpose doesn’t mean we have to accept or agree with their actions, but understanding them may help predict their actions or be useful in understanding them in other ways. Again, taking away the monstrous and understanding the human workings beneath is required to form a rational analysis.

Wait, am I adding political subtexts to Beauty and the Beast? Why shouldn’t I? Fairy tales often included lessons, and probably had more subtext than was realized even at the time.

In researching Beauty and the Beast for Circlet’s A Beastly Affair anthology, I learned that some of the pre-cursor tales were cautionary tales warning women about abusive relationships — and offering hope that they could survive and rise above their circumstances. (Others, and other interpretations, suggest these stories were offered as hope to young women destined for arranged marriages.) The personal and political have always been entwined, and love has never been as uncomplicated as Disney’s tales would have you believe. Understand the monsters around you; reject the stereotype; never fear to speak your own truth so that other may understand you.

I don’t have more information on A Beastly Affair yet, but I’m offering a giveaway of a paperback of Forgotten Menagerie to tide you over. In this book you’ll find tales of unusual shifters. In my story, “Mirrors, the Moon and the Boy,” the protagonist thinks himself a monster, and it takes a very special young man to show him he may have misunderstood everything.

Leave a comment to enter the giveaway. On April 20th I’ll put all the email addresses in a hat and I’ll pick one. I’ll contact the winner to get your mailing address. Until then, look out for — and seek to understand — the monsters around you.

Images from The Graphics Fairy

Resist by supporting GLBTQ authors (and other news from my life)

So, Trump…  I can’t even…

This isn’t a political blog per se, except in so far as writing, writing about sexuality, and writing LGBTQ characters are inherently political acts.  Sadly, they may become even more so if the current administration has its way.

Which makes this as good a time as any to announce that I’ll have a story in the Circlet Press anthology A Beastly Affair (erotic retellings of Beauty and the Beast).  I just found out so I don’t have a publication date yet, but this might be my favorite of all my stories.  I’ll let you know the details when I have them.

Last month was my annual attendance at local science fiction convention, Arisia. Friday night included a panel on the genius and creativity of gay erotica author and satirist Chuck Tingle. While he started with gay dinosaur porn and erotica featuring animated inanimate objects, Tingle has branched out into erotic political satire (for example, Pounded by the Pound: Turned Gay by the Socioeconomic Implications of Britain Leaving the European Union.) U.S. politics are also subjected to his unique style as well. In online forums, Tingle spreads a message of love and inclusion to his internet followers. This entertaining panel discussion included the reading of an email from “Dr. Chuck” himself, and I was left feeling the love and appreciating this unique talent even more.

Saturday, I had a wonderful afternoon hanging out with other Circlet Press authors and then attended an amazing panel on “LGBTQ  SF/F/H Authors You Should be Reading.”  Read on for the extensive list of publishers, authors and other resources that will keep your reading list full.

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Post-Halloween Post

nasa_spooky_sunHappy Post-Halloween! I hope you had all the tricking and treating you desired. If you’re still lusting for hot, spooky stories, head on over to Circlet Press’ website where they ran a series of erotic Halloween microfictions.

Sadly, I wasn’t able to submit anything. I’m planning some fun for this winter though:

  • I’m writing up my review of Starstruck. I’d love to read yours, too!
  • I’ll be interviewing the talented and amazing Annabeth Leong about MakerSex, the anthology she edited for Circlet Press earlier this year
  • I’m working on an experiment: a crazy little story where you get to choose the ending

luna_jubillee_image

Also, I don’t have a publication date yet but I do have a story accepted into Circlet Press’ Like A Spell Volume 2: Fire. It’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever written, and I look forward to sharing more details
with you soon.

photo credits:
1. Sun photo: Boo! by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center  . Used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license – https://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/15498245665/
2. whatcha think? by Luna Jubllee. Used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license –
https://www.flickr.com/photos/lunajubilee/22498591525/

The Ruby is available!

The Starstruck anthology is available, including my story, the Ruby.  I wrote about some 5702026863_7b3ceb87fe_zof the inspiration for the story in a guest post on Annabeth Leong’s blog.  (Thank you to the talented and generous Annabeth for posting it!)

Here’s a snippet from the story:

Already seated, chestnut hair falling over his face like a pony’s forelock, was Toby Rodriguez. He rose as they approached, eyeing Ezra from behind his fringe.

“Pleasure to meet you, Ezra, holder of the Ruby of Radiance. Please call me Toby.”

Toby’s fingers were warm and slightly sweaty. His eyes were a friendly light brown, framed with thick dark lashes over sharp cheekbones and full lips. A few improbable freckles broke out against his light brown skin. He wore khakis and an orange T-shirt showing a mountain goat riding an old-fashioned bicycle. The shirt had shrunk until it clung to him.

“Pleasure is all mine,” Ezra said, letting go a bit too quickly. His palms were sweating again.

“I ordered some bruschetta to start,” Toby added as they sat down. “Patti said you were okay with gluten and all that.”

Patti had arranged everything with ruthless efficiency. Ezra wondered if she was lurking somewhere nearby, ready to rescue her normally reclusive boss if things got too weird.

“Bruschetta is great. I was so excited when the Gremlin Mines expansion came out. I’ll try not to get all ‘fanboy’ on you, but I was determined to get the ruby so I could tell you how much I love it. The attention to detail—I swear I could smell the stale underground air.”

“Yeah. Ahh. Great.” Toby squirmed. His cheeks flushed, nearly matching his T-shirt. “I’ve been instructed to not talk about the game until the main course is served. So maybe, umm, tell me about yourself?”

Ezra felt his cheeks warm in response. “Me—um. Me?” He took a deep breath. “I work as a graphic designer at Hawes College. I have an ancient tabby cat named Sasha. I play Weird West a lot—why aren’t you supposed to talk about it?”

“I’m supposed to pretend to be well-rounded.” Toby’s cheeks were still red, but he sat up straighter, tossing his hair out of his eyes. “Fuck it.”

 

Photo credit: Rubies by John Morgan https://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/5702026863/.  Used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/