Email: rachelkramerbussel at


Lusty Lady

Watch my first and favorite book trailer for Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica. Get Spanked in print and ebook

Monday, April 30, 2007

In The Flesh happiness

In between the sometimes easiness and sometimes agony of writing, I've been pimping In The Flesh as much as I can. I am sparkling with ideas for it but will just have to settle for the monthly series for now.

Anyway...May 16 is a really unique night. We've got two novelists, Dana Vachon and Min Jin Lee, bringing you very, very different takes on Wall Street, and sex on Wall Street. Basically, an insider and an outsider. I'll save my Min Jin story for the 16th, but suffice it to say, I've been waiting for her book for almost a decade.

The brilliant and beautiful letter lover Samara O'Shea will be reading, I believe, from James Joyce's erotic letters. You've gotta buy her awesome book For the Love of Letters to read her own erotic letter, unless I can coax her to read it in the meantime. But what's even more noteworthy are her gigs post In The Flesh - Martha Stewart Morning Living the next day and a discussion about love letters and thank you notes at Papyrus on Spring Street in Soho on May 30th.

Samara's book just came out and would make a wonderful Mother's Day gift. I'm off to send a few copies myself.

I love bringing all sorts of disparate people together. I may even tape the event again if there's interest from the readers. And don't worry, I'll be reminding you again before the 16th.


Because a girl can never have too much Ms. Pacman in her life

Me playing Ms. Pacman at SXSW:

And now I want to visit Portland again just to play Q*bert at Ground Kontrol. I don't know if they fixed the machine at Barcade, but I still want to spend a few hours at Ground Kontrol at some point.

More He's on Top and She's on Top reviews

Over at Erotica Readers & Writers Association, Ashley Lister reviews both books.

He's on Top:

The thing that I most admired about this volume was the skill shown by the writers involved. Writing scenes of male domination and female submission is a difficult trick to pull off. The dangers of advocating misogyny in some form or another are inherent with every command the protagonist makes. In our current PC climate, any author who shows a man wielding power over a woman, and the woman enjoying that submission, runs the risk of being labelled clueless, sexist, bigoted or worse. Yet those issues are cleverly avoided in this volume as Rachel has included stories from intelligent authors who are sensitive to the motivations of the top and bottom in these exciting, erotic escapades.

She's on Top:

The quality of writing, as in all Rachel’s anthologies, is second to none. Rachel has recruited some of erotica’s top talent and produced a compilation of stories that can’t fail to arouse.

Teresa Noelle Roberts takes her readers to the cutting edge of female domination with "Mark of Ownership." Her story balances the credible relationship of a couple drifting apart but suggests that, hopefully, there are some things that might last forever. Kathleen Bradean, "City Lights," introduces a beautifully dominant businesswoman and reveals how easily a woman can manipulate her husband.

Lisabet Sarai, "Shades of Red," is a story of a lady wielding the whip in the Amsterdam red light district. Lisabet shines when she’s writing about the power play between strong women and the men who worship at their feet. "Shades of Red" shows she can combine an eloquent narrative with a streak of naughty fun.

Steven Hart gives what has to be the most thorough review any of my books has ever gotten at the new site Erotica Revealed:

Re: He's on Top:

Lisabet Sarai’s “Incurable Romantic” carries away top honors for entering the male head successfully and winnowing out how the hero rethinks and comes to understand the meaning of loyalty and trust as he thrashes back and forth between his beloved’s bottom and his lover’s rear end. When you are beating two behinds, what are the rules of fidelity? What sort of vote do those getting thwacked have in this case? Ms. Sarai has thought this out carefully and renders her answer with very plausible tenderness. She is one of the best in the field of erotica without question.

And re: She's on Top:

These are big, highly dimensional, playful girls. They take charge and get things done to their liking regardless of their physical size. They have a lot of down and dirty fun doing it, regardless of who is left squealing and begging for mercy (gratefully) in the process.

“City Lights” by Kathleen Bradean is the story most like conventional femdom fiction. As such, it is guaranteed not to disappoint. A dominant woman spanks and canes her ultra handsome, successful man with voracious abandon after a hard day at the office. The story is far more than that though because it captures how much she also loves and depends on him in the peculiar ways of their relationship. She does not “wear the pants” in the family. She doesn’t need to because she decides when the pants get taken down.

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"One Sex Worker Nation Under Dildo" opens May 1st

Originally uploaded by Audacia Ray.
The wonderful Audacia Ray and $pread magazine have been busy getting ready for Sex Worker Visions II, the art show by sex workers, and most especially, "One Nation Under Dildo." This photos is just one of over 40 dildos that will be on display at Arena Studios, 407 Broome Street, Suite 71, from May 1 through July 28th. See the rest of the dildo photos here.

From Monday's Metro article:

One contribution, “Platforms,” speaks to the perpetual danger faced by sex workers. Created by the Aphrodite Project, this pair of platform shoes has a global-positioning system and 911 panic button embedded in its 3-inch heels. Gallery visitors can try them on and feel what it is like to walk in a sex worker’s shoes, especially haunting in light of the unsolved murders of four Atlantic City prostitutes.

Ray, who’s completing her master’s in American Studies at Columbia University, knows both worlds. “The idea that ‘nice girls don’t’ is part of the stigma of the industry,” she said. “Some of the nicest, smartest folks I’ve met have been sex workers, and many of them are people you would never suspect of being involved in the industry.”

From Audacia, a list of contributing artists:

Annie Sprinkle

Genevive Zacconi

Molly Crabapple

Zak Smith

Vena Virago

Bella Vendetta

Jesse Cox

Dominic Vine

Stayc Saint O

Sarah Bleviss

Michelle Talich

Norene Leddy

Kaitlyn Tikkun


And speaking of sex work, worth reading is Melissa Gira's Sexerati post "Johns Gone Wild: The DC Madam's Gift to Sexual Health, especially re: former Deputy Secretary of State Randall Tobias:

Under his direction, USAID cut off all funds to organizations that did not sign a pledge to the US government that they opposed prostitution. Tobias is likely the choicest john offered up from any black book, period, and especially so for those who truly have the most to lose politically in this suit. By that I don’t mean the other abstinence-preaching Bush appointees and their hypocritical brethren, but sex workers...

No one should have to go down politically because they’ve hired a prostitute, and, newsflash, it’s not like johns don’t exist in Blue States, too. What’s frustrating is that sex workers have been going down, politically and literally, on these guys and their goons for aeons. If we can stop and remember what sex workers know from experience, that money and politics are so deeply embedded in sex as to be impossible to do one without doing the whole team, this moment could be a potential wake-up call for progressives to take on the promotion of sexual health as an agenda item every day, and not just when Ms. Palfrey Goes to Washington.

Felicia Sullivan memoir excerpt at HuffPo

My friend Felicia Sullivan's memoir The Sky Isn't Visible From Here is coming out early next year.

Read an excerpt now at Huffington Post

My interview with Baby Love author Rebecca Walker on Memoirville and Alternet


I didn't post about it here earlier, but I interviewed Rebecca Walker (yes, Alice Walker's daughter) about her new book Baby Love: Choosing Motherhood After a Lifetime of Ambivalence for Memoirville. Now it's gotten picked up by Alternet, with the requisite "wtf is this bullshit?" comments (it's not just Alternet, but almost everywhere with an abundance of comments).

Memoirville also published an excerpt from the book.

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

More True Sex Confessions from In The Flesh on YouTube

More In The Flesh True Sex Confessions, this time from the fabulous playwright Courtney McLean (watch her make out with herself is hilarious!) and novelist Valerie Frankel who opens with a Woody Allen quote as she reads from her essay in Paula Derrow's forthcoming anthology Behind the Bedroom Door. And who can forget comedian and former 30-year-old virgin Lianne Stokes's "What's up, bitches?" greeting.

You really need only look at the expression on Courtney's face below to want to watch her talk about "the s word." I think I will do another True Sex Confessions later this year, because it's such a crowd pleaser. More video sex confessions coming soon.


Saturday, April 28, 2007

Kinky Virtual Book Tour update

A quick update before I bury myself in words. The KinkY Virtual Book Tour is going quite well, save for the two stragglers who have yet to post, but hopefully they will soon. Today's turn by Ms. Naughty was particularly thoughtful:

He’s On Top got my vote because - in the end - the submissive woman’s orgasm becomes a focus. And female pleasure has always been the top priority for me when it comes to defining porn for women.

He’s On Top features a wide variety of stories involving BDSM and games involving sexual power. The men always have control and they all take great pleasure in wielding that control. At the same time, though, their attention is on their female partners. They are acutely aware of how much pleasure and pain the woman is experiencing. Her orgasm is a focal point, and often, a necessity. Even if she is just a tool for the man’s pleasure, she is still consenting and thoroughly enjoying herself...

The beauty of erotic fiction is, of course, the ability to portray the relationships between people and thus enrich the sexual experience far beyond the mere mechanical act of cock-in-pussy. No doubt it’s difficult to capture the subtleties involved with such a blunt tool as a camera.

In any case,
He’s On Top offers a thrilling glimpse into the special kinds of relationships involved in dominance and submission… and it is pretty fucking hot to boot.

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Friday, April 27, 2007

All about publishing

Because I often get asked questions about erotica, publishing, agents, etc., and don't always have the time and, more importantly, the answers, here are a few links that should be of interest to writers:

J.A. Konrath's A Newbie's Guide to Publishing is a must-read. Here's three recent, amazing posts:

Review Redux

In the spirit of this post, if you review He's on Top or She's on Top on your blog or Amazon (or both!), send me the link at rachelkramerbussel at and I'll send you a Moo card. And since I still have tons of them here, anyone who wants a She's on Top postcard, email me at the same address with "postcard" in the subject line by May 13th (postal rates go up May 14th to 41 cents for a regular U.S. domestic letter and 26 cents for a domestic postcard and you can also stock up on Forever stamps, effectively capping your postal rate at 41 cents if you buy enough to last until the end of your life). Thanks!

Faking Confidence

Happiness and the writer

Why the brilliant Dr. Sketchy's Official Rainy Day Colouring Book author Molly Crabapple is everywhere you look

Falling Through the Earth author Danielle Trussoni on "How to Reconstruct the Past in a Memoir"

Excellent Litpark interview with the awesome Future Tense publisher and author Kevin Sampsell

Why did Jessica Valenti dedicate Full Frontal Feminism to Miss Magoo? Find out

How to tell who's a smart agent and who's not from Pub Rants

The Punk Marketing press kit

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a note about Flickr

another one
Originally uploaded by rkb1.
Just a quick fyi to those who check out my Flickr stream. I've been having some issues figuring out how to moderate the settings to keep the photos safe, so for those who are seeing blank images when they try to look at my pics, if you change your settings to, I believe, "safe" and have me as your friend, you should see them. Possibly not. Violet Blue and some other Flickr users have given me some great advice, I'm just on a major deadline for the next little while so will look into it when I'm done, but I wanted to let you know that I know. You can still view my photos (and that setting is being applied to all my photos, even the cupcake ones), you just have to click through and say yes to the warning, but that will be taken care of soon (I hope). Anyone with any relevant advice, please let me know at rachelkramerbussel at and just sit tight, cause once I finish up with my deadline and get this sorted out, I am SO going to be doing more photos.

SheNANNYgans that move me to tears

Sometimes I worry that this blog is too schizophrenic. For who, I'm not sure, but I'm sometimes tempted to make an all smut/sex blog and then an all everything else one. But as much as I love the niche blog, this one's ultimately about me. And my seemingly infinite interests that may go from, say, sex and sluttiness, to mommyhood and beyond, in an instant. So feel free to click away or skim or skip as you desire. And since my main interests in life are pretty much babies, cupcakes, Boggle, books, feminism, high heels, sex and smut, well, you're gonna get a mix. Those who get it, get it; you know who you are.

One girl who gets it, who I will post about here every day if I have to (but just add her to your rss reader, why don't you?), I love her blog, and her, that much, is Rebecca Woolf. I met her at a party at SXSW and was so glad to have the chance to just say hello. In a huge understatement, her life is very different than mine. She's 25, I'm 31. She lives in LA, I live in New York. She's a married mom, I'm neither. But...we get each other. And her blog makes me cry from joy and cry from just sheer overwhelming emotion.

Her post today about SheNANNYgans, the new section of her blog written by her nanny, made me and many other readers cry. It defies everything that the word "nanny" brings to mind. It's as far from the Upper Anything Side and The Nanny Diaries as you can get:

Today, watching Lauren chase Archer around the park, it is impossible to believe that three years ago she was bedridden. That she had tubes in her chest and couldn't walk or expose herself to any kind of light. That she couldn't eat or feel her feet, numb and paralyzed. It seems like the whole thing was a dream.

Finding someone to trust enough to be with Archer is almost impossible, but having him in Lauren's care is such a blessing. I don't know if there is someone I would trust more.

Read the whole thing

And we'll both be at BlogHer in July! I so can't wait.

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"On my 31st birthday, I gave my boyfriend two blowjobs..."

Hear me read what comes next in my essay "Where Sluts Fear to Tread" from Lisa Solod's forthcoming Seal Press anthology Desire: Women Write About Wanting at True Sex Confessions Night, April 18th, 2007, at In The Flesh Erotic Reading Series. I've pulled out a few choice lines here, and will of course remind you when the book comes out (I'm assuming later this year or early 2008)). For now, we have this video excerpt.

Does it mean I’m not marriage material if I’ve not only given many blowjobs, but enjoyed most of them as well?

Sometimes I do things "for my career," or whatever. This is one of them. I'll be adding some of the others' videos once I get their approval. It's really, really surreal to hear and watch myself like this, reading a piece that I have no problem seeing in print, one I wrote during the last few weeks of my last relationship. But I'm putting it up despite whatever embarrassment I may feel both as a way to promote In The Flesh, as a way to give myself an accurate sense of how I speak in public. I know I shake, my voice is higher and squeakier than I think I normally sound. I know I get nervous, and I was really uncertain while reading this, trying to read it with the same passion that I wrote it, but knowing that was impossible. I'm different, my life is different, but that's the thing with's momentary. The minute you put words down they change, and you change. They change you. That's the beauty and also the...darkness. It's why, say, a blog, is so of-the-moment. It's ephemeral and yet eternal (thank you, Google). It's important to me to capture those moments even if, I'll admit, there's plenty of my words online and around that I wish I could erase, not so much because of the writing quality, as because I'm not there anymore. But I was, and to me, this kind of personal writing remains powerful becaues it captures feelings that really only stood out to me as I fleshed them out in writing. It was this a-ha moment of weirdness. A sex columnist in a monogamous relationship worried about being too slutty? WTF?

...'If you seem like a pro, you might be a ‘ho.’”

But, and there's always a but...that was/is me. It's a line I (and, I'm sure, plenty of other women) walk and the reason I think that essay resonates, for me anyway, is that it's not about him, but about me. It's about issues that I have with my sexuality, it's about an uncertainty I certainly still face, perhaps even moreso now than then. And for me it's pretty new; I think in some ways I was more carefree about sex in my twenties and now sometimes I want to act all "Sex? Me? What? I'm all about cupcakes and babies." Okay, not really, and my writing career is infinitely sluttier than I am, but it gets confusing, especially with lovers you want to impress, lovers you want to feel the same way about you as you do about them. I have my own inner good girl who sometimes dukes it out with the more real me. I wish I could say I never think about these things, but I do.

...there are slutty demons that lurk in the far reaches of my mind, waiting to capture me in their clutches.

I threw out on here that it was about "blowjobs and nipples," and yes, on the surface it is. But what it's really about is sexual freedom and the tricky ways that freedom plays itself out, the ways women judge ourselves, our bodies, our sex lives, the really insidious roots of the word "slut." It's about wanting to be passionate but not being sure how. It's about showing love and lust and not knowing what you'll get in return. I'm not going to say it's universal, but I know it's not just me and it's not that it's an altruistic thing, it's more of a "throw it out there and see what happens" thing.

I don’t necessarily think of it as a skill like typing 100 WPM or being a whiz at Boggle.

That being said, taking a reading out of the context of that bar, that audience, the food, the crowd, the atmosphere, means it's lacking. Those readings are special in part because of the attentive audience, the energy in the room, the eager anticipation which, I've been very pleased to say, isn't pervy so much as curious, friendly, fascinated. I have no idea what the YouTube crowd will make of it. I have my own qualms but it's worth it, I think. I hope. Let me know what you think. I almost wrote "be gentle," but I'm a big girl, I can take it. More YouTubing from True Sex Confessions Night TK.

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Betty Dodson tonight in Seattle

Mistress Matisse interviews Betty Dodson for her Control Tower column:

Do you think of yourself as a sex worker?
Yes, in that I'm doing hands-on teaching with women clients. Although I no longer run the Bodysex Groups, my private practice is basically a workshop for one. However, my friends who are sex workers providing male clients with oral sex or intercourse do not feel that I qualify as a sex worker. They don't think my risk factor is as serious as theirs. There has never been a (legal) precedent set for a surrogate partner in a therapeutic setting.

Betty Dodson appears Fri April 27 at the Little Red Studio, 750 Harrison St, 328-4758, 9 pm, $20.

One of my favorite Voice columns was the one where I interviewed her. Those were the days; I do miss that kind of writing and hope to get back to it sometime soon. Betty is amazing and I urge you to go see her if you can; she's so gracious and brilliant and inspirational.

In The Flesh on YouTube

Coming soon (like, hopefully, this weekend) are videos from True Sex Confessions Night at In The Flesh! (You will be able to hear what comes after "On my 31st birthday, I gave my boyfriend two blowjobs..." from my essay Lisa Solod Warren's forthcoming anthology Desire: Women Write About Wanting.) In the meantime, here's me and a few other readers from a very early In The Flesh, as well as Marcy Dermansky reading from her novel Twins on October 19, 2006 at In The Flesh. Enjoy!


New smut!

Yesterday I got my contributor copies to two new anthologies: Sean Fisher's Dorm Porn 2 with my gay male college story "Friday Night Video" and Alison Tyler's Got a Minute? with my voyeurism story "Hired Hunk" and my sweat fetish story "The Perfect Season." Always fun to get dirty books in the mail. I don't write too much gay male erotica but once in a while I do. Joel A. Nichols also has a story in Dorm Porn 2 and Got a Minute? has many names that will be familiar to readers of my anthologies.

Got a Minute? Sixty Second Erotica

Dorm Porn 2


Thursday, April 26, 2007

Blogs, cupcakes, fashion

The freelance workload is kindof insane right now, in a good way. I'm motivated like I haven't been in ages, all bubbling up with ideas for fiction, non-fiction, a little bit of everything. Of course I'm sad that I can't go to every book party, especially the bonanza of them this week (How Sassy Changed My Life, She's Not the Man I Married, Full Frontal Feminism), but I am at least trying to get things done.

A few unrelated links:

Battle of the Blogs- vote for your favorite

Is bringing cupcakes to work a good career move? Of course I'm in favor

Violet Blue interviews Margaret Cho: in her Open Source Sex column and on her Bloggers Undressed podcast (which I am so gonna do next time I go to SF-I'll even literally get undressed for it) - also, how fucking awesome is this news that Violet is speaking at Forbes's Internet Leaderhip Forum? As I signed off on an email to her today, "You rock."

Speaking of Forbes, my super-awesome friend Hitha Prabhakar is taking their style coverage to a whole new level. I'm so not a fashionista but I love what she's doing over there.

Speaking of friends and fashion coverage, Carly Milne at AOL Style Blog looks at how to have a "green" wedding.

And more fashion: The Fug Girls stand up for televised transgender fashion rights on All My Children.

And in what I think is the best of New York magazine's sex and love issue, Ariel Levy (yes, Ariel Levy) writes about her lesbian not-wedding.

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Masturbation haiku contest from Early to Bed

Chicago sex toy store Early to Bed is celebrating Masturbation Month (May) with a masturbation haiku contest:

Haiku Contest for Masturbation Month!
Send us haikus on
Self-love and masturbation
Top 10 on our blog!

Also-- Prizes for the top 3!
1st Prize $40 Gift Certificate to EtB
2nd Prize: Copy of our new movie, Special Delivery
3rd Prize: 100ml bottle of Liquid Silk lube

Due by May 15th--limit 5 per person! Email to haiku(at)
Use whatever name you want published online!

Pitching an Agent interview with Esmond Harmsworth of Zachary Shuster Harmsworth

I interviewed literary agent Esmond Harmsworth of Zachary Shuster Harmsworth for Mediabistro's Pitching an Agent series

He's looking for: High-concept fiction, literary fiction, mystery, women's fiction, memoir, business, research-based psychology, politics, international affairs, "quirky pop culture"

I found Esmond via his client Joyce Hanson, of Bad Girl Blog


Too ridiculous not to share

Via Hello Hilarious:

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Sexy accents

I'm writing a piece on "sexy accents" - it's in quotes because that means different things to different people. If you have some hot story of hooking up with someone who spoke another language or get off on hearing certain kinds of accents (either in the U.S. or abroad) OR have an accent you hate and find totally unerotic (especially if it involves someone you dated/slept with or came close to), I want to hear about it. I can use a pseudonym if you'd like. Email me at rachelkramerbussel at with "accents" in the subject line by Friday 4/27 at noon and tell me the story along with your name or pseudonym, age (over 18 only), occupation and location. I'll be in touch with more info (and will post here) about when/where this will be published soon. Thanks!

Am I a Gaping Vagina?

I just found an entire community on Vox against GV. What's GV, you ask (as I did)? Well, I'll tell you: Gaping Vaginas.

Now, the big question for me this brings up is (the admittedly self-centered): am I a Gaping Vagina? Yes, I heeded the Carly Simon siren song allure of the blog post's title.

You're sexy! You're putting you and your sexuality out there because "that's just how you are". You have guts! You're so crazy! Right?

In Susan Brownmiller's words,

"You think you're being brave, you think you're being sexy, you think you're
transcending feminism. But that's bullshit."

And it is bullshit. And the women around you that you try so hard in every which way imaginable to "beat" and "use" and "be like" will look at you like how I LOOK AT YOU.

And that is with a disapproving, raised eye brow, as I take a sip of my double, Absolut Better-Than-You cocktail and think to myself, "What a god damn Gaping Vagina."

As will every single other woman, and hopefully, man in your life because it is too difficult to keep up all those lies and shows at once. You will burn your own bridges. They will from both ends and turn to ash.

I just hope by the time you are stranded on your own lonely island with nothing but a bunch of fishnets and "Lip Venom" left will you have finally figured out what your problem is?

Or will we have a new TV program called "GV and the Island" where you sit on your laptop and video blog about the trials and tribulations of masturbation and how horny you are all by yourself on that god damn island.

It's unclear from their definition, and, perhaps not surprising for someone who calls Ariel Levy's Female Chauvinist Pigs her "bible" (oh wait, that's crossed out and it's just one of her favorite books) the amount of vitriol leveled against people who are, last I checked, still women, frightens me. I'm not saying there's not plenty to critique, but when women are "chauvinist pigs" and "gaping vaginas," I can't help but think that just adds to the name calling. And while I've been critical of Abby Lee over anonymity issues, the harshness with which she's treated in these posts seems uncalled for (though the final Lindsay Lohan line here did amuse me). It reminds me of this post where I asked "Is your vagina a sexual turnstile?" Which brings me back to the same question I've had every since I read Female Chauvinist Pigs, which is who are we attacking? The Paris Hiltons/Judith Regans/strippers/bikini waxers themselves, or the supposedly ubiquitous raunch culture? That line gets very fuzzy indeed and is a large part of why I took offense to so much of Levy's book. To my reading, these critiques put readers on the defensive, so they have to try to "prove" that if they, say, sometimes like to take their clothes off or they do sex work or they write a sex blog or they act in any number of ways they are somehow being disingenuous and not "true" to themselves and some essentialized version of womanhood and I just can't buy into that. I think these critiques will only work if we stop playing Big Sister and acting like we know what's best for other women, like there is one single answer. There's just not.

I'm not saying I think Paris Hilton (or anyone else) is above criticism. I am saying that I personally take offense at the tone of this article, and I think there has to be some kind of acknowledgement that there's not necessarily an easy way to tell what a woman's thinking just based on what she's wearing (or not wearing). I'm writing an article tangentially related to this and I think it raises some important questions so more from me on this and boob flashing soon.

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I can't believe I didn't know that Justine Joli has a blog. How have I lost track of that girl? My bad. Really. I mean, this is her description of herself:

The official home of stripping, acting, blogging, podcasting, ass-kicking, game-playing, anime-watching, hentai-loving, Comic-Con-attending, 40%-lesbian, glamour model, Justine Joli - the world's hottest geek.


She's also on MySpace.


Calls for Submission: Yes, Sir and Yes, Ma'am

As it states below, ANY questions about these books should go to yesantho at - nowhere else. Ideally with my crazy long extended mix calls there shouldn't be many questions, but I know they pop up so am just trying to forestall them. Feel free to forward/repost. Thanks.

Yes, Sir: Erotic Stories of Female Submission and Male Dominance
Yes, Ma'am: Erotic Stories of Male Submission and Female Dominance

Edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel
To be published by Cleis Press in February 2008

These two companion anthologies will explore the power dynamics of BDSM from the sub's/bottom's point of view. For an idea of the kinds of stories I like, please read my recent anthologies He's on Top and She's on Top.

Yes, Sir: What's it like to be a female submissive, whether a full-time slave to a powerful master, or a kinky woman involved in an intense scene? These stories should explore the range of ways women submit to men, whether masters, husbands, boyfriends, play dates, strangers, internet chatters, etc. Is the storyteller a lifelong bottom, or a new convert to kink? Does merely offering herself up to any guy get her off, or does something about this particular top excite her? Can be long- or short-term relationships, single encounters, or anything in between, as long as the characters and plot are believable and the story is hot. (I don't want simple snapshots of scenes that don't tell us anything about the characters' motivation.) Story should be from the point of view of a female masochist and or submissive/bottom, though it can be told from a first or third person POV (first is preferred). Or if you're particularly adept at it, second person.

Yes, Ma'am: What makes a man cower before a powerful woman? Is he living out a lifelong fantasy, or has he always taken the submissive role with women? I want stories of sissy maids, hardcore masochists, visits with dommes, husbands completely devoted to their wives, full-time slaves, play partners, and much more. These can be long- or short-term relationships, single encounters, professionals, etc., as long as the characters and plot are believable and the story is hot.
(I don't want simple snapshots of scenes that don't tell us anything about the characters' motivation.) Story should be from the point of view of a male masochist or submissive/bottom, though it can be told from a first or third person POV (first is preferred). Or if you'reparticularly adept at it, second person.

Both anthologies will feature stories from a wide spectrum of the BDSM world. The more creative your storytelling, the better. The examples listed above are just that, examples; feel free to let your imaginations run wild! I encourage you to think beyond clichéd scenarios and set your stories outside of the traditional play parties/dungeons, as well as thinking outside the box when it comes to "power play" and am especially looking for stories where not all of the erotic action is centered around physical sensation. There can also be more than two people in a given story or scene (or even just one if they are following someone's orders), and bisexual scenarios are welcome as long as the bottom/top relationship is a heterosexual
one, as fitting the title.

Guidelines: Stories should be unpublished and not submitted elsewhere for publication. Stories should be 1,500 – 6,000 words, double spaced, Times New Roman 12 point font, in a Word document only. If it is truly impossible to send a Word document, please send as both a RTF AND in the body of the email. You MUST include your bio and full contact info
(mailing address, phone number, real name/pseudonym) when you submit. Payment will be $50/story and 1 copy of the book upon publication in February 2008. Contributors will retain the rights to their stories. You may submit up to 1 story per book. I will get back to you as soon as I can, though it may not be until November 2007 – please note that the publisher has final approval over the manuscript. Send your submission as a Word document to yesantho at ONLY with eithe "Yes, Sir Submission" or "Yes, Ma'am Submission" in the subject line—if you are submitting to both anthologies, please send separate submissions for each (though you can attach 2 stories for one book in the same email).

Please make sure to follow ALL directions. I'm getting a lot of single-spaced, non-Word document submissions without bios or mailing addresses. Please also make sure you send your FINAL version of your story, not a first (and then second or third) draft. All of the pertinent information, including a polished version of the story and your bio/contact info should be included in a single email, not multiple ones. Thank you.

If you have any questions about Yes, Ma'am or Yes, Sir, please query yesantho at

Deadline: May 15, 2007
Expect to hear back from me by November, 2007
Payment: $50/story, upon publication
Email: yesantho at

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Rave reviews for He's on Top and She's on Top from Jane's Guide

Thank you so much to Always Aroused Girl who was prepared to hate He's on Top...but didn't! Update: She also reviewed She's on Top and liked it. Yippee!

Check out her fabulous review of He's on Top:

What I appreciated throughout He’s On Top was the way each story demonstrated the dom’s desire to please his partner and his ability to listen closely to what she wanted, then give it to her creatively and sensually. Time after time I noted doms who put their own pleasure on hold in order to create the best possible experience for their lovers. Now that is truly sexy to me.

Here’s how I progressed through the book. I read the introduction and the first couple of stories. At that point I found myself turned-on enough that I had to take a break to masturbate. I came back to the book and read the next several stories. By then I was impressed enough to email a couple of my male friends who love the sound of leather on a bare female bottom; I recommended the book to them in the strongest possible terms. Once again returning to
He’s On Top, I worked my way through the rest of the stories, then immediately emailed Rachel Kramer Bussel, thanking her for sending me a copy and telling her how much I enjoyed the book.

Read the whole review

And She's on Top:

Rachel Kramer Bussel does an excellent job in selecting hot, unique stories with oomph. By “oomph,” I mean that these are the kinds of stories that you will remember after you finish reading them. You’ll remember them after you’ve removed your slippery fingers from your own personal panties (or shorts), put away your toys and gone back to your lives. These are sex-stories that you’ll keep thinking about long after the orgasm has passed...

My favorite story in the anthology is “Victoria’s Hand” by Lisette Ashton, wherein our narrator, a 19th-Century young lady, sets the ground rules for her betrothed while demanding his oral services. I’m wishing I’d done something like that before my own marriage. We could all learn something from young Victoria’s method.

Read the whole review

Also, I finally, after, like, years, managed to claim my blogs (this one and In The Flesh) on Technorati, which is how I found this review! I'm getting all technified, what with that and joining MyBlogLog and Eventful and Twitter. Actually, I have no idea what I'm doing but I'm learning very slowly.

And please keep checking out the Kinky Virtual Book Tour (though Katie Spades has apparently had health issues and I haven't heard back yet from them so her post is delayed), which has been a blast. More on that soon. And if you like the books, please let Amazon know. I want to be able to keep on editing kinky smut (and other kinds of smut too!) for many years to come so I'm doing a big push on these. It will make editing Yes, Sir and Yes, Ma'am all the more delicious too to know that I already have this audience (hopefully) who like this type of erotica. But things are looking good with these books and my mind is on the current projects on my plate while still overseeing these. I will be so excited next year when someone else gets to do most of the nitty gritty but then again, I'm a control freak so I kindof like it.

Actually, in another life, I would SO be a publicist, I love plotting and planning and researching publications and search engines and all of that,'s time consuming. You can easily get sucked into it and the fact of the matter is, publicity doesn't actually equal anything in terms of sales. It's not a direct correlation but I do believe their are dividends that come from publicity beyond simply sales. Getting the books mentioned in Willamette Week and The Oregonian and Portand Mercury is important because I don't live out there, I don't have a presence there, so it's a way to spread the word. All of this, however haphazardly or randomly or quirkily.

This virtual book tour/postcard promo/book party thing is my $1,500+ 100% amateur wtf experiment in book publicity, just to see. It was a real blow to have those three Fetish Chest books fail miserably on the market (they sold so poorly that Alyson cancelled our Second Skin anthology), but I'm pretty sure I know why (coughcoverartcough) but want to actually learn from my mistakes, not repeat them (and in that case I don't think it was my doing at all, but they are still my books). I think all of this will help going forward in figuring out who my audience for erotica is and who else is out there and what people are looking for from their kinky smut. At the same time, it's a different skill, a different muscle, than being creative. It's like a jigsaw puzzle or math problem, it's logic vs. intuition (there's still intuition in what I'm doing with this, but it's more administrative than the creative work). I've come to realize that I like a little of both. Sure, I like the creative end of editing anthologies, the awe at discovering a really killer story, and, when I'm on, the fiery rush of trying to type as fast as my brain is thinking, my fingers tripping over themselves in their haste, the words sprinting across the screen. I love that, but it's also ephemeral. More often the words are jogging, or speed walking, or maybe just crawling, limping along, slowly and not all that surely. I haven't yet figured out how to make them sprint on command.

But I also like the minutiae of pasting each author bio in, doing page counts, checking for typos and indents. It's a hell of a lot of work and sometimes I just can't deal but then I look at the pretty shiny books and how the whole is so much greater than the sum of their parts, and I know it's worth it. Same with the novel, it's bits and pieces that get interwoven into one grander story but I have to conceptualize the bits before I can even begin to contemplate the whole.

Also, found an old and super large photo of me on the Kinky Jews blog from last year's reading. A random tidbit, yes.

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Watch me talk with my hands (aka "moderate")

Robert Rummel-Hudson, author of the forhcoming memoir Schuyler's Monster (his blog is really a must read and his Flickr stream always makes me marvel at how truly photogenic his daughter is - Rob too), sent me this link to the video of the Mediabistro panel I moderated on bloggers turned authors. It's $20 ($15 for AvantGuild members) but you can also watch a free promo clip and see and hear me talk with my hands. I get so nervous doing any kind of public speaking but once I got over that a little I think it went really well and hopefully illuminated some points about getting a book deal. I was going to say turning bloggers into book authors, but we are still bloggers, it's not an either/or thing. I think they're two highly different things, sometimes connected, sometimes not.

Just wanted to prove that not everything I do involves clothing removal. Actually, it rarely does. But I would totally play Boggle naked.


Who's your favorite sex columnist?

I'm writing a story about "how to be a sex columnist" and I'm pretty much done with the interviews for it but I realized that there may very well be some awesome sex columnists out there (print/online/college/whatever) who I'm not reading or don't know about and because I'm OCD about this stuff, I want to know.

So if you have a favorite sex column, let me know at rachelkramerbussel at or in the comments. And I'll just preemptively say that I can't interview everyone for a relatively short piece, but I'm asking in part for the article, and in part out of curiousity.

And I'd advise you all to read Viviane's Sex Carnival, which has so many sex news links it'll make you dizzy. Viviane does a sex columnist roundup too; can't find the latest link now but just add her to your RSS feed; I'd imagine anyone reading this blog would be into Viviane too.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I found out about from Madeline, and of course, promptly had to sign up. Just because. Yes, post-SXSW I'm social-networking-mad. I barely even know what half these things are but I get sucked into them. Also, all good ways to procrastinate. The point is, it's fun. And keeps making me want to go to some other party where I can walk around topless. For now, I'll have to make do with (NSFW) the internet and my not-safe-for-work boobs. At least, until the Fleshbot lovelies ask me to return.


I know I'm a total dork, especially about books, but I was all excited to see He's on Top and She's on Top listed as being new at Quimby's in Chicago. I didn't get to go there in 2004 when we were there for BEA, but this year, when I'm there for BlogHer, I'm so gonna check it out. Will not think about the sadness that my favorite band is no longer together. I will still buy Elizabeth as many drinks as she wants. But July is ages away so I can't really think about that now, but it's really the little things, like this, that keep me going during deadline hell.

Much I want to post about, like the awesomeness this is my kinky virtual book tour, but it will have to wait as I edit my gay erotica stories and various interviews and write about a slutty virgin (that's my new three-word answer to "what's your novel about?") and make lists literally on top of lists (I have a stack of various sized papers along with a pretty flower-shaped orange Post-It note) scribbled in some way that is meant to make me remember things.

And a very random word about very random holidays.

Today is "National Zucchini Bread Day." Via Hungry Girl. I cannot write that without quotes. Now, yes, I have a blog about cupcakes, but I don't think they deserve their own holiday!

And if you didn't know already, April is National Grilled Cheese Month. This is actually a food I adore, but who thinks of these things?


Pill Patrol

Babeland blogged about Planned Parenthood's new Pill Patrol campaign. See below and sign up:

Every day in America, women are forced to play the lottery when they walk into their neighborhood pharmacies and ask for Plan B emergency contraception (EC). Planned Parenthood is launching a nationwide campaign to protect women’s health by ensuring that EC is available in every neighborhood in America. We need your help! Sign up to survey a store in your neighborhood now.

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Fun with Feministing comments

Oh how fun it read Feministing's comments section. But I will say this thread about Jessica Valenti's new book Full Frontal Feminism is actually quite interesting and while I generally don't read huge comment threads since they tend to descend into madness, this one was good for a laugh, posted by "Ranter:"

I have not as of yet read your book, and I only discovered you and your site yesterday, but the first thought that comes to mind is that you are not married (to either a woman or a man) or have children, so it is hard to take you as a serious feminist, because you are still capable of being a irresponsible, child like, care free spirited if you so choose. A woman without a spouse or family obligations cannot be safely as reckless as you present yourself to the world. You are described as a one-woman show, and a woman with no attachments can hardly exclaim that she is an example that most women can follow. Could you really expose you frontal side if you had children that would suffer the consequences of your actions? Could you go about not caring about you weight or looks if you wanted to keep a man from straying? Could you really expect to keep a high paying job in corporate America if you refused to adhere to the often-painful social normals that few women dare to revoke? How can you live so flamboyantly while most women suffer horrible self-consciousness issues, and then call yourself a feminist? Unless you suffer like the average woman does, then you cannot behave as if you are a woman's woman much less a feminist.
First off I must admit that I am a straight man, but I am a feminist in that I think woman are superior to men, particularly in the field of decision making, rational thinking, budget handling, and in forming balanced planning to solve problems. But feminism cannot be flaunted until the structures in place that oppress women are torn down, and they will not be torn down by women who do not understand what it is to be a mother or wife, or what it means to have to do horrible things to themselves in order to survive. I see potential in you Jessica, but fighting with sophomoric antics and trivializing the suffering of those who cannot yet overcome the oppression they face, is not the place to start.

See also: Laura Barcella's Alternet interview with Valenti

Rebecca Traister's Salon interview with Valenti

An interesting thread from the latter that's worth following in the interview (and more from me on the topic of bare boobs very soon):

I want to delve into the tricky relationship between sex and feminism. You write a chapter called "Feminists Do It Better (and Other Sex Tips)." Can you talk about some of the conflicts surrounding so-called sex-positive feminism and its detractors?

There are conflicts [within feminism about how to talk about sex] because we're still all trying to process it, and to do so through a feminist lens. I'm still trying to process it. All I know is that the way [critics are] talking about it does not seem helpful to me; it's more about blaming young women and finger-wagging than it is about talking to them or listening to them and taking them seriously. Young women have enough people calling them stupid whores without feminists doing it too.

Do you think critics like Maureen Dowd or Ariel Levy, who have argued that an embrace of sex positivity has led young women to further objectify themselves through stripper-sex-worker-Girls-Gone-Wild excess, all in the name of purported sexual empowerment, are calling women stupid whores?

I don't think that's what they mean to say, but I think that's the message that gets across. If you tell someone that they're buying into sexism if they flash their boobs at Mardi Gras, you're telling them they're stupid and that people are making fun of them and that they're making bad decisions. That means they're getting it from all sides.


Hot Dr. Sketchy asses

Dr Sketchy Western MA
Originally uploaded by Audacia Ray.
An outdoor Dr. Sketchy? !!!

You can see more photos in Audacia Ray's Flickr stream as well as get her take on vamping it up with Molly Crabapple and Bella Vendetta out in the country on her blog.

Please also read her post on "How to be an ally to sex workers." I hope that my recent posts have not come off as me attacking sex workers themselves or the industry, because that is not my intention in any way. Or to attack customers of the sex industry as a whole. I'm just dealing with my very own personal issue and that's what I'm addressing in those posts.

Technorati Profile

Veronica Vera at True Sex Confessions

Originally uploaded by brianvan.
Crossdressing academy guru and all-around awesome woman Veronica Vera wowing the crowd at True Sex Confessions Night at In The Flesh.

Photo by Brian Van - see the rest of his Flickr set from that night.

Watch Origami Striptease author Peggy Munson's censored Lammy DVD

You'll be able to read my interview with Origami Striptease author Peggy Munson on Feministing soon. For now, I wanted to give you the link to her censored Lammy video. Also, it's hot. There's another link there too to more reading by her.

So check out the video (or click below); it will very likely make you want to read the whole book!

Sugasm #76

Sugasm #76

Mon 23rd Apr, 07

The best of this weeks blogs by the bloggers who blog them. Highlighting the top 3 posts as chosen by Sugasm participants. Want in Sugasm #77? Submit a link to your best post of the week using this form. Participants, repost the link list within a week and you’re all set.

This Week’s Picks

The Curse of Nude Modeling Strikes Again (

“I choose to share images of my nude or near-naked self on this website.”

My Kinkiest Fetish (

“There is an erotic frisson about a skillful mindfuck that is almost as good as the real thing.”

Upgrading the Product Line (

“But even in the throes of orgasm, part of my brain is ticking off the clock.”

Mr. Sugasm Himself

What Am I Supposed To Do? (

Editor’s Choice

The Sex Club: Part 1 (

More Sugasm

Join the Sugasm

(Sugasm participants should re-post all the links above. The following links may be excluded as long as you include all the above links.)

Thoughts on Sex and Relationships

Clitorises, caffeine, consuming, and other oral fixations (

Our Struggle With Desire (part 2) (

Still not a total bitch (

What turns you on just by thinking about it? (

Sex Politics

1984 is approaching (

Putting On My Big-Girl Panties, One Leg At A Time (

NSFW Pics (& videos)

I Feel Myself (

Playing with my New Toy (

Sex Work

First kiss of the whip a first meeting (

Getting Off (

Translation… (

BDSM & Fetish

Fantastic fellatio (

Featured Fetish - Balloons? Really? Huh. Ok. Balloons! (

Figure Study (continued) (

Happy HNT - Frozen flash (

Impatient Kitty (

The Stroke Slut is Back (

Tighter: the garage (

Unexpected, Part Three (

Sex News & Sex Reviews Girls are Good! (

The Cone Review (

My Favorite Toy (

Erotic Writing and Experiences

Butterflies & Goose Bumps (

Deep Impact (

Devotion (

Diary of a Futa (part 1) (

Flying High (

Mid Afternoon Romp (

Mooning over moaning (

My darkest moment (

Project Management in Four easy steps (

Sublime Things - Lover’s Discourse (

Using Lingerie To Create Intimacy - And Erotica! (

Virgin (

Sexy stockings pic courtesy of A Slip of a Girl.


My truth

The last thing (for now, of course, and hopefully for a good long while) I’ll say here about the whole drama of ’06 is that I think the truth is one of our most precious commodities. In so many ways, as trite as it may sound, the truth does set you free. Yet my truth and your truth may differ; I can only look inside my own heart and offer up what I see there, and that is perfectly, validly, within my right. Not only that, I feel it is, in part, my duty, my serenity, my salvation, to tell those truths in whatever way I see fit.

And there’s a reason things like Fresh Yarn, Heeb Storytelling (ahem), SMITH, Cringe, Mortified, True Sex Confessions, True Mom Confessions, and brilliantly gutsy, beautiful writers like Rebecca Woolf are thriving. We as a people want to hear those stories. We relate to them. We see ourselves reflected in them. For me, sharing stories is selfish in the sense that it’s about me first, my need, my priorities. But the secondary effects are so powerful. We get so wrapped up in our own daily cares and concerns, especially our own dramas, that we forget other people have been in the same situation⎯or worse. I’ve heard so many heartbreaking, yet soothing in that way only commiseration can provide, stories in the last few months, and they make me see that I’m not alone.

Lastly, anyone trying to blame or shame you for sharing your truth needs to take a look inward. I’m talking broadly here, because I’ve done it too. It’s their own flaws, failures, lacking, problems, that they are angry about, most especially at those who’ve seen them up close and personal. Most especially at those who realize that their insides may not match their outsides. Of course those people want to maintain their facades, of course they would rather shut other people up. I’m sure, say, Stephanie Klein’s ex-husband or, more importantly, her ex-mother-in-law, are not thrilled with how they were portrayed in Straight Up and Dirty. But I’d be willing to bet that any discomfort they feel has to be at least as much due to their own actions, their own mistreatment of others. I think anytime someone mistreats you, there are some who will turn on you instantly, like it’s your fault. I’ve seen people criticizing Mike Daisey for not having another copy of his show notes, completely missing the point. We berate ourselves enough and I’ve certainly done so but one thing I will not do is apologize for telling my truth, my way.

There are too many ironic, sad twists and turns to that story to get into it any further here; maybe I’ll bring it up at BEA and see if anyone there wants to do something with it. Actually, I’d rather let it fade because I have much better things to tell you about and share and explore. But this is about more than the First Amendment or blogging or breakups or any specifics. It’s about our stories and however we make sense and peace of them. This, these words, are how I do it, and anyone is free to read or not read them as they wish. I didn’t ask for these feelings, I didn’t ask to be placed in a really horrible situation, I didn’t ask to get my heart broken, but I did, and I dealt with it.

I found this great Daily Om (do click and subscribe) piece about “Finding Unqualified Happiness” that I think is so important. Hard, but important.

The circumstances you live through each day have the potential to bring both joy and despair into your life. Relying on the reactions they awaken within you to create an emotional foundation means living on a roller coaster of feeling whose course is determined by chance. Though you may yearn for the object of your desire-be it a new job, financial health, a spouse, or some other symbol of success-you have within you the power to be happy without it. Letting go of your "if only" thinking patterns can be as easy as recognizing that inward emptiness cannot be dispelled with outer world solutions. Try creating a list of your "if only"s. Then literally and figuratively let go of the items on the list by tearing it up or burning it. This simple action can help set in motion the intention to set you free, enabling you to make a fresh and balanced start in the present, unencumbered by regrets and unfulfilled desires.

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Gothamist in Wired - Jen Chung gets Rave Award

Look closely....
Originally uploaded by jenchung.
Wired profiles Gothamist co-founder Jen Chung and gives her a Rave Award.

I've been a reader, fan, happy hour attendee, interviewee, and interviewer at Gothamist over the years and while I cannot keep up with reading all the sites (or even Gothamist) every day, I'm proud to be a part of the team.

Hot Ritalin Readings lineup tonight

I heart Ritalin Readings and haven't been in way too long. And if you want more Dana "D-Nasty" Vachon, come see him May 16th at In The Flesh, where I'm sure he'll be reading from the dirtiest parts of Mergers and Acquisitions.

(Note later-than-usual start time this date: 9pm)

This show's theme is "Marry/Fuck/Kill" and the 4-minute time limit per reader will be enforced with supersoakers.

Hosted by Gabriel Delahaye and Lindsay Robertson
Produced by Jon Friedman (The Rejection Show)

Jami Attenberg (Author, Instant Love)
Kurt Braunohler (Comedian)
Amelie Gillette (The Onion AV Club's The Hater columnist)
Chris Mohney (Editor, Gridskipper)
John Mulaney (Comedian)
Dana Vachon (Author, Mergers and Acquisitions)

The Ritalin Reading Series
"Sometimes it's good to be quick"
April 24th at 9PM
Mo Pitkin's House of Satisfaction
34 Avenue A (b. 2nd and 3rd St.)
F or V train to Second Ave.

Monday, April 23, 2007

"Show love by any means necessary."

I think when I blog or write about the tough things, the ones that are just too painful to do anything else but purge, I forget about them a little bit. I reread them and feel instantly older, a tiny bit wiser, because I'm not there anymore, I'm out of that pit and maybe in another one, but thankfully, not that one. I adore Shawn Colvin, who I really discovered through Mary Lou Lord, and "New Thing Now" is about Courtney Love, but as I wrote in a post last year that's too circular to even bother linking to, this song reminds me, in many ways, of the fall of 2006. And I just don't want to repeat those mistakes, in my choices of who I spend time with, or in myself. I don't want people like that in my life or even circulating around it, near it. They're toxic, and there's nothing pretty about it.

So amidst all the poor me of that post, my eyes skip ahead to something happy, something shiny and pretty and good. Something sparkly and hopeful and so very me.

My New Year's resolution that I sent to SMITH, which I'm not really sure that I've kept:

"Show love by any means necessary."

And that's what I have to do. To myself and my friends and the people I care about. Forgetting to do that, getting sucked into the negativity and pointlessness, still trying to assign blame and rewrite history...all pointless. All I can do is chalk it up to a learning experience and move along and figure out what to do differently. Five months too late, perhaps, but better late than never.


Because lesbian sex is dangerous

And now for something truly fucked up. First Mike Daisey, (and his YouTube video's now been viewed over 28,000 times since April 21st!) now this, from Bentonville, Arkansas:

BENTONVILLE -- A Bentonville man asked the city to pay his two sons $20,000 and to fire the library director for including what he called "pornography" in the Bentonville Public Library collection.

"The Whole Lesbian Sex Book" by Felice Newman was removed from the library shelf after Earl Adams of Bentonville complained it is "patently offensive and lacks any artistic, literary or scientific value," according to a letter he wrote and faxed Feb. 16 to Mayor Bob McCaslin.

Adams said his 14- and 16-year-old sons, Kyle and Ryan, looked at the book while the 14-year-old was browsing for material on military academies. He requested the city pay him $10,000 per child, the maximum allowed under the Arkansas obscenity law.

"My sons were greatly disturbed by viewing this material and this matter has caused many sleepless nights in our house," he said in another e-mail to McCaslin earlier in February.

From a press release from publisher Cleis Press

Felice Newman, author of The Whole Lesbian Sex Book says “Boys have been pouring over sexually explicit materials in libraries since - well, since there have been libraries. Why was a copy of my book in the military section? Well, sometimes young people browsing the library shelves will tuck away a favorite book where they can find it later. These two young guys are the very reason libraries must be uncensored, and librarians must be free to order the books they feel will benefit
the public.”

If you'd like to send the librarians a supportive note, here's the link.


My day was, well, aggravating. Only because I've made it so for myself. Because, you know, I love when people tell me I'm fucked up. Which, yes, sometimes I am, but not in this case. And I'm stubborn and beligerent (and I guess they are the same thing?) and when I hear ridiculousness like that it just makes me more determined. And yet, determined to what? I don't want to sink to the lowest common denominator of human behavior. I don't want to be associated with that. I've seen enough of it and want to actually act my age. I don't want to act like I'm in high school. And, well, I certainly wouldn't want to be in the position of having my so-called friends telling people what a fucked-up train wreck I am. Some people get off on that, I guess, but that's their choice, not mine. Of course I have regrets. Of course I was stupid and naive. Of course I hate myself for that part of it because I know I could've walked away sooner, I could've not put so much of my heart into it that I wouldn't care. That's what people keep telling me anyway. That I feel too much, too fast. And maybe I do but how do you know when that's right and when that's wrong? I don't have ESP and I'm sure I'm girl one million to fall for that so it's not that I truly feel bad. Or guilty, as was opined the other night. I never felt guilty, just...slutty. There is a difference. :) But I want it to go away. Or maybe I will leave at some point, who knows. But I will do whatever I will do because it's my choice, not because of cowardice. I really need to get google ad sense on here so all those clicks make me money, that would make me happy if only for the irony.

So anyway, yeah. Aggravation, stupidity, try not to relive the whole thing in my head, rinse, repeat. First some happy things:

Dedicated In The Flesh fan and smutty funny girl Jessica Delfino keeps a sex diary for New York magazine

I'm still gathering content for my website, so these will be up in text form soon, but if you haven't listened, here are two of my erotica stories as read by the divine Violet Blue:

Listen to my story "Animals" from Best Women's Erotica 2007 being read on Best Women’s Erotica editor Violet Blue’s Open Source Sex podcast here

Listen to my story "Spike" from Best Women's Erotica 2006 being read on editor Violet Blue’s Open Source Sex podcast here

It's funny because I just read Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat Pray Love and was so moved, and I know that I am resisting the lesson at its core. Several times Gilbert, who's been through a lot worse than I have, seeks out answers for making peace with her ex-husband, and with herself. I found her journey truly moving, and then found this that she wrote about writing.

As for discipline – it's important, but sort of over-rated. The more important virtue for a writer, I believe, is self-forgiveness. Because your writing will always disappoint you. Your laziness will always disappoint you. You will make vows: "I'm going to write for an hour every day," and then you won't do it. You will think: "I suck, I'm such a failure. I'm washed-up." Continuing to write after that heartache of disappointment doesn't take only discipline, but also self-forgiveness (which comes from a place of kind and encouraging and motherly love). The other thing to realize is that all writers think they suck. When I was writing "Eat, Pray, Love", I had just as a strong a mantra of THIS SUCKS ringing through my head as anyone does when they write anything. But I had a clarion moment of truth during the process of that book. One day, when I was agonizing over how utterly bad my writing felt, I realized: "That's actually not my problem." The point I realized was this – I never promised the universe that I would write brilliantly; I only promised the universe that I would write. So I put my head down and sweated through it, as per my vows.

I wish I could be all Beliefnet about this, but it's not about forgiveness anymore, though I do find the below statement true. It's about me trying to live my life, to be happy, to be past it all. I am trying, I really am, and my real friends rock my world for bearing with me. But I have to think that forgiveness is a two-way street. I have nothing to forgive really, I don't want that. I just want to move far on. I was doing well and thought this city was big enough for co-existing. And maybe it is, but the internets aren't? Who knows, and really, who cares? I don't want to say never say never, but I will try to make this the last post about this. Next time I write about this, I'll be getting paid. Or I'll just pretend like it never happened. If only.

Forgiveness is about more than finding reasons, or understanding. Often our anger melts away when we truly understand the circumstances of the other, but that is not identical with forgiveness. Although it is important to try to understand the motivations of other people, true forgiveness occurs when conduct has been inexcusable, not when it has been understandable. A misunderstanding that is cleared up is not an occasion for forgiveness, but for further clarity. Forgiveness is a generosity of the heart, not an example of clear thinking.

To forgive someone is to believe them to have been wrong, and to let go of the moral leverage that grants us over another. Forgiveness is renouncing the position of remaining superior. It is a leveling borne of letting go.

The next realization is that we forgive for ourselves. Anyone who has borne a grudge knows its corrosive effect. The grudge perches on the heart like a gargoyle on a parapet, looking out with an ugly countenance and growling at the world. Sometimes anger at one person spills over into our love for another. For as the Jewish tradition warns, anger is like a bubbling pot, and no one can control where and how it overflows.

The human heart carries hurts through life. We are all scarred, and burdened, and broken in different ways. Many of these injuries are unavoidable. We cannot escape the losses that life brings. But we control whether our souls are tied in knots, angry and gnarled. We cannot control the world, but we are each of us the captains of our own souls.


"Like a Cupcake"

Anyone who saw my Rejection Show "Like a Virgin" Movie I Made as a Kid will extra appreciate this.

Here's a YouTube video to the tune of Madonna's "Like a Virgin" but this time it's "Like a Cupcake," from Acme Instant Food, which has lyrics (which you don't hear on this video but it's so fun and totally worth watching):

Like a cupcake
Something a little refined
Like a cupcake,
Made with chocolate, and red wine

Article research: breasts in public

South Beach
Originally uploaded by drwatt.
I'm writing an article (for a yet to be determined publication) about toplessness in public (by women) and/or general nudity in public. Mainly about parties like, um, my recent one and also the type of thing covered on Last Night's Party.

So if you're a woman over 18 and have ever taken off your top in front of people at a bar/club and want to talk to me about it (either anonymously or not), email me at rachelkramerbussel at with "breasts" in the subject line.

This photo's from Flickr's Breasts in Public group.

Also read Lux Nightmare's recent Sexerati post, "I Hate Hipster Naked." She calls it exploitative and likens it to Girls Gone Wild. I want to hear from women and men on both sides of that line - also if you're a photographer of such breasts, I'd be happy to talk to you. The sooner, the better.

I'm also working on a piece about people who find out their partner's cheating on them via email/BlackBerry/internet/etc. Put "internet cheating" in the subject line. And feel free to pass these queries on. Thanks!

another reason to adore her

Jessica Cutler plus Twizzlers
Originally uploaded by rkb1.
"I wish everyone would just learn to paddle their own canoe."

Jessica Cutler to me, and she actually didn't mean in a sexual way, but read it however you want. I heart her.

Bloggers' code of conduct

"Web pioneers say code of conduct needed to clean up manners online,"

The code also commits those bloggers who sign up to it to respect confidentiality when appropriate and to respect other peoples' privacy.

Most ambitiously, the Blogger's Code asks that online writers refrain from publishing anything that they would not be comfortable saying in person. Furthermore, the code also asks that bloggers refrain from permitting commentators to post responses anonymously...

Meanwhile, in Washington a court will hear a lawsuit brought by a former Senate employee who accuses a colleague of a breach of privacy for publishing details of their sexual adventures in a blog. Robert Steinbuch is suing Jessica Cutler, who won notoriety in 2005 after her online account of her serial affairs with political aides and Bush administration officials was discovered. Ms Cutler, who blogged under the nom de plume "Washingtonienne", subsequently used that fame to win a book contract and film deal.

See also:

"When A Man Hates A Woman," Violet Blue, San Francisco Chronicle

"How the web became a sexists' paradise," Jessica Valenti, Guardian UK