My next all new anthology, Dirty Dates: Erotic Fantasies for Couples
, is being published either on my birthday, November 10th, or 6 days later on the 16th. Either way, I'm calling it my 40th birthday book and am so proud of and excited to be ushering in such a big birthday with a sexy new BDSM erotica book that I'm giving away 40 copies to Amazon.com reviewers
- so be one of the first 40 who sign up! Questions about this promotion? Email dirtydatesantho at gmail.com.
That's it: just visit this form
and leave your name, U.S. mailing address and a link to a previous review. Yes, those are all required, and the first 40 to sign up will get a free copy the minute I get my hands on them, probably sometime in October. I will send you a signed copy, and you just have to leave a review by December 31st sharing what you thought of it. U.S. only (sorry, if I ever win the lottery, I will happily send free books abroad!). If you want some more info, read on. Want some other ways to support the book (and my career as an anthology editor)?
Add it to your "want to read" list on Goodreads
Like the book's Facebook page
Follow dirtydatesbook on Tumblr
About the book - table of contents and introduction:
Introduction: Kinky Is as Kinky Does
The Corset Dorothy Freed
The Swap Jade A. Waters
Slow Burn Morgan Sierra
The World in My Pants Valerie Alexander
Lying Down Kathleen Delaney-Adams
The Rabbit Trap Nik Havert
Closing Time Elise Hepner
A Thousand Miles Apart Tilly Hunter
Switch Mina Murray
The Birds and the Bees Giselle Renarde
Potluck Alva Rose
Magic Words Emily Bingham
Polka-Dot Dress Erzabet Bishop
Baby Steps Justine Elyot
On Location D. L. King
Well Lit Sara Taylor Woods
A Soundproof Room with a View Leigh Edward Gray
Recipe for Punishment Jacqueline Brocker
Cry to Me Skylar Kade
Needles Kathleen Tudor
Admitting It Is the First Step Rachel Kramer Bussel
Introduction: Kinky Is as Kinky Does
What does it mean to be a “kinky couple”? Does it mean both partners hit the dungeon every night—or have one in their home? Does it mean wearing a collar? Does it mean a 24/7 BDSM lifestyle? Yes, yes, yes—and no.
The truth is, like so many aspects of sex, “kinky” is in the eye of the beholder. One half of a couple may be kinkier than the other—in fact, those kinds of stories often yield extremely powerful transformations.
If you were to pass some of these couples on the street, you might peg them immediately as a little bit naughty. Others, you’d stroll right by, without any sort of erotic antennae tuning in. Many of them take pains (pun intended) to hide their kink—or exult in the thrill of maybe, possibly—hopefully—getting “found out.”
The thrill here, what makes these dates “dirty” in the best sense, is the tension between tops and bottoms, doms (and plenty of dommes!) and subs, those craving control and those who desire nothing more than giving up control. Actually, there’s a third category of sub, one who teeters on the edge between giving up and exhorting his or her own control. That fine line is teetered upon perfectly in “Switch,” by Mina Murray, when narrator Cass notes: “He smiles, a sly look that does nothing to warm his eyes. That’s when I start to get nervous.” Keeping a sub on edge is all part of the kinky fun, but Murray makes it clear that this dom’s mastery comes from the heart when he tells Cass of her new chains: “‘I had them made especially for you. With padded cuffs, to protect that creamy-soft skin of yours. See how much I love you?’”
These couples act out their kink in many ways—some at play parties, some outdoors, some long distance. Some do it with bondage, spanking, service, a corset, a look, a location—for many, their instrument of choice is words. Emily Bingham takes one extremely charged word in “Magic Words” and lets readers know exactly what the prospect of saying it does to her character: “The shame is a scalding tickle that takes over every cell in my body. Looking down at his lap to hide from his gaze, I feel more embarrassed than in any naked-in-front-of-a-crowd nightmare. It’s the one word I promised myself I would never say, yet he has managed to make even this taboo titillating, something I want to explore with him. I’m annoyed at myself for being so aroused by this lone, little word.”
What is that magic word? You’ll have to keep reading to find out. There’s a sensual beauty to these stories that I believe will speak to those who practice kink in their lives and those who don’t, because in some ways the tenderness, the charge, the power shifting back and forth between partners, transcends kink. It speaks to ideals of worship, wonder, adoration—from both sides. Even the most sadistic men and women whose worlds you’re about to enter clearly value those they are asking to give them their bodies, their minds, their words, their beings. They are living out their most vivid fantasies with the person they most cherish. I hope you enjoy their dreams, fantasies and explorations, and that they inspire your own.
Rachel Kramer Bussel
Red Bank, New Jersey
A little backstory: I'm seeing a lot of doomsday musings about my publisher, Cleis Press, regarding the recent changes in personnel, and those make me sad. I pour my heart and soul into creating the best anthologies I can, always including new authors I've never worked with before, and striving to push my own boundaries and the genre's to offer readers, whether they've read erotica or not, a variety of sexy stories, the types that, hopefully, will stay on their shelves for a long time (or their e-readers). I just unpacked hundreds of books from my move, and seeing my erotica library made me even more proud to contribute. I've been reading erotica since long before I tried my hand at it, and Cleis was home, along with the now defunct Alyson, to my first story, "Monica and Me" (which was published in both Best Lesbian Erotica 2001
So I want to do all I can to ensure I get to keep editing, keep publishing new authors and ones whose work I've already enjoyed, for a long time to come. Hence, this promotion. Rather than naysaying, I'd love to see readers and authors supporting all kinds of writers and editors, whatever their publishing path. Here's a way to do so that's absolutely free. Your review can say anything you want (as long as it doesn't have curses or otherwise run afoul of Amazon's review policies), you will just need to post it by December 31st. These first 40 reviews are important to potential readers and to Amazon's algorithm, which helps more people see the book and consider it in their shopping choices (kinky holiday gift, anyone?)
Hearing which stories were favorites of readers is also a great way for me as an editor to boost my authors and give them some extra attention and encouragement, plus it's a way for me to see what readers are responding to so I can note that in my future editing. So it's a win/win, in my opinion: you get a free book, I and my authors get feedback, and you help push this book just a little closer to being a success.
Labels: bdsm, BDSM erotica, career, Cleis Press, couples erotica, Dirty Dates, Rachel Kramer Bussel