Email: rachelkramerbussel at gmail.com



 

Lusty Lady

BLOG OF RACHEL KRAMER BUSSEL
Watch my first and favorite book trailer for Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica. Get Spanked in print and ebook

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Bisexual BDSM romance Booked interview and what else I've been up to

Lately, I've been trying to get more into routines. Just as I make coffee for myself each morning, set out my vitamins, get lunch ready, etc., I want to treat my prime writing time that way as well. Yet that's easy in theory, harder in practice when I often get distracted, or wake up to a to do list from the night before. I actually get more done on the mornings of the three days I work in an office, because I know at a certain point I'll have to stop and get dressed and head off, than I do the days I work for myself on my own projects at home. It's a conundrum I'm trying to change. Today at noon EST (9 a.m. PST) I'll be doing my best to register for the Palm Springs 2018 conference Altitude Summit (generally called "Alt Summit") because I want to start learning from successful creative business entrepreneurs about how they manage their time and their best practices.

One thing I've been doing is getting more involved with Lady Smut, the group romance blog where I post monthly. I'm still posting once a month, but also working on our Lady Smut Romance Blog Facebook page.

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My latest for Lady Smut was, for Pride month, an interview with Leandra Vane, author of the new BDSM romance Booked, whose action largely takes place in and around a small-town library. It has a kinky, bisexual male protagonist (who also deals with nerve damage), who has a male love interest and a female domme (Mistress). There's a lot more going on, but that should give you a good taste! Leandra took the time to answer my many questions about kink, disability, ownvoices, her characters' relationship with books, self-publishing and more.

Here's a snippet of what she had to say:
I used to think I shouldn’t write about disability in my fiction because people would call me a self-absorbed “Mary Sue.” But I learned that most of us carry around shame and never grow because we guard our secrets and experiences from each other. I believe by sharing our stories we can all learn and grow together. So I started mining the experiences living with a disability has given me and putting them into some of my stories. All my life I’ve turned to books to have the conversations with me that people in the real world were unwilling or unable to have.
Leonard also have a story in my anthology Best Women's Erotica of the Year, Volume 3, which pubs in exactly five months, on November 21, in ebook form (the print version will be out December 12). Hint: Right now the print price on Amazon is only $10.47 (subject to change at any moment), lower than the $11.49 Kindle price (neither of which I have any control over, by the way). I'm in the midst of planning what I hope will be a BWE of the Year 3 book tour, though perhaps one spread out over a few months depending on my schedule and availability, so stay tuned.

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I enjoy working for Lady Smut because I miss having a group blog; Cupcakes Take the Cake was my life for so long. I lived and breathed cupcakes, always on the hunt for the latest news, planning any trip, work or pleasure, around where to get cupcakes. Eventually, I had to step down because we weren't generating enough income for that project to be worthwhile. It's always hard to step away from a project you love, especially one you've built from scratch. I felt the same way shutting down my In The Flesh Reading Series, and this year, putting an end to my Between the Sheets LitReactor class. I miss the creative aspects of those projects, but they simply weren't feasible for my life or career by the time they ended.

Of course it's also hard when projects I've been hired to do end, like my Village Voice column or other ongoing columns I've written, but what I've learned over my career is that when one door closes, another may not automatically or instantly open, but those new doors are there, waiting for me to unlock them. For the record, I don't get paid to write for Lady Smut, so that and this blog are the only writing I do for free, but both are valuable to me in their own ways. I used to write for free (if anyone remembers all those Gothamist interviews), and while I don't regret it exactly because I got to do some amazing pieces, I think it set me back in terms of how I approach writing and money. These days I'm still doing as much freelancing as I can, but the majority of my income comes from my copywriting job and book sales. That may change, since last year I made most of my income from book sales, entertainment blogging and writing for sites like Salon. The one constant is that things will change, and I'm doing my best to pay attention and plot my own course. Speaking of which, this summer I hope to launch some new online classes related to writing erotica and having an erotica career. I don't have an exact date because there's a lot I have to learn on the technical side, but that too is something I'm working on, if not every day, most days, as I plot and plan and get ready for a new adventure that I hope will reach people who need some encouragement and guidance. When I've taught erotica writing classes in the past, I've been so thrilled with how many students have gone on to publish short stories and novels and truly make a name for themselves.

For now, I'm offering one-on-one consultations via my site Erotica Writing 101; you can learn more about working with me here. I've also written a blog post there on why erotica anthologies take so long to help writers understand that process, because I know it's frustrating to have to wait over a year to hear back from an editor such as myself. I'm working on more posts relevant to erotic writers and will be sharing them as they go up.

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Friday, June 16, 2017

Sexy free read: Except from The Reward by Jade A. Waters

Today I'm bringing you a guest post from my friend Jade A. Waters, erotic novelist and frequent contributor to my anthologies, including The Big Book of Orgasms and Best Women's Erotica of the Year, Volume 1. This week, her third kinky erotic romance novel, The Reward, the final in her Lessons in Control series, was published, following Maya and Dean on their relationship journey.

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Here's the official blurb:
What if the fantasy never had to stop?

It's been a year since Dean Sova turned Maya Clery's world inside out. There isn't a secret fantasy that Maya and Dean haven't explored—each one more tantalizing and mind-blowing than the last. But while their relationship may be stronger than ever, taking the next step pushes boundaries neither one of them is prepared to face.

Dean couldn't care less about Maya's background—all her choices made her the woman he wants to tie to his bed and never let go. But not even a Dom as strong as Dean can keep the past at bay. When a threat from Maya's old life surfaces, she'll have to choose once and for all: fight for freedom under Dean's command, or lose the reward she's worked so hard for—the chance to be happy with the man she loves.
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From The Reward by Jade A. Waters, out now:
“Come see what I did.”

Dean winked, then shifted his body to rise from the couch. I arranged myself into a sit, entranced by the shimmer in his eyes once he reached his hand out for mine.

Curious, I followed him upstairs. I figured he’d spent the time I’d been at dinner unpacking things as promised, but when he led us toward the spare room, I didn’t suppress a chuckle.

“Did you spend all that time I was gone setting up something dirty?”

“Not all.” Dean spun to take both my hands, backing us through the doorway and into the center of the room before drawing me against his chest for a full-body embrace. “But I didn’t think you’d object to what I did do.”

He kissed me and I closed my eyes. I surrendered to the feel of his tongue and the strong rake of his palms down my back. It amazed me how this man could wow me with both sweet and sexy, the promise of something naughty dancing in his eyes when he caught my bottom lip in his teeth. Dean gave it a tug, and his hands curved down over my ass to grip me tight.

“What is it?” I asked.

“Wait.” He backed away, and my body drooped, but my blood started to churn harder in my veins. Dean opened the top drawer of the antique dresser he’d shown me the week before, and I kicked off my flip-flops as fast as I could. I didn’t think I’d need them. Dean pointed at the wall a few feet away from us and across from the window, the same one he’d backed me against the last time we were in here. I peered over. “Do you see?” he asked.

At first, I didn’t see anything. But I lifted my head and spotted two large eyelet screws extending from the wall up toward the corners. I turned back to Dean to find him holding a blindfold in his hands.

“This could be interesting,” I said. Aloof as I played it, my heart had kicked into a merciless pound and I cinched my knees together. Dean came over, his face serious before he circled me. I marveled at how fucking sexy he was—appraising me in his pajama pants, for God’s sake—and once he came back to press his chest against mine and lifted the blindfold over my eyes, I huffed out an excited breath.

“You know I hate not seeing your eyes,” he began, the husky murmur a tantalizing force when the satin of the blindfold met my face and he pulled the long ties behind my head to form a knot. “But I figure, with me going away for so long, we need a big send-off. Something sexy and dramatic.” His fingertips traced faint lines down my back that coaxed my nipples into stiff peaks, and then he cupped my ass again. “Something intense. I want it to be a sensation you savor while I’m gone, a memory you’ll keep playing back in that beautiful head of yours.”

My pussy clenched with Dean’s grasp of my shoulders to spin me in a slow circle. With his chest to my back and my view blocked, I hated not being able to see yet loved how hard it made me concentrate on his words and the shivers tripping along the surface of my skin. Dean brushed my hair aside to kiss the nape of my neck, then grabbed the hem of my shirt to whisk it up and off me, careful not to disrupt the blindfold he’d secured over my eyes.

“How do you feel?” he asked.

That question. Our question.

“Excited,” I whispered.

“Good.” Dean’s mouth covered my earlobe before he slid his palms up my belly and over my breasts, caressing me through my bra. I arched to rub my ass against him more, because I wanted to feel his arousal, too. The fabric of his pajama bottoms wasn’t leaving much to the imagination with him as hard as he was.

“Oh, Dean,” I growled.

“Yes, Maya?”

“I…” I tried to find the right words while he started to nudge me forward with the width of his body. He pinched my nipple in two fingers, and with his other hand, he drew the strap of my bra off my shoulder to kiss the spot it’d covered. “I love how you play with me.”

“That’s superb, because I love playing with you.” He bit my neck and we took one more step before he stopped me. The presence of the wall felt close by, and I lifted my hands to confirm it was directly in front of me. Dean said, “Tonight, I really want to play with you. Hard.”

He rocked up his hips, the move forceful enough to push me flush to the wall. I gasped, my pulse clattering. Dean unsnapped my bra fast, and after he pulled it off and tossed it aside, he trailed his mouth in hot kisses over my shoulders and down my sides before stripping away my jeans and panties.

Naked for him, I quivered. He took my earlobe in his teeth again, the sensation making me cock my head with a wisp of a sigh. In the press of his body along my back there was such a contrast between his hot, muscular form and the soft cotton of his T-shirt compared to the cold, unyielding wall before me. Smashed between them, every nerve in my body ached for more, for touch. I moaned at the slip of Dean’s tongue in my ear to taunt me, and once I turned my head, he guided my arms out to the sides. I stayed in place when he backed away, leaving my palms, cheek and chest pressed to the wall. The lack of his contact felt abrupt and cold.

“Come back.”

“I will. But I have to look at you right now. You’re always gorgeous—but waiting, naked, knowing you can’t see what comes next… It’s so sexy, Maya. Fuck.” He clapped his fingertips against my ass cheek in a sudden burst, and I jumped. “Spread your legs.”
Intrigued? You can get The Reward for Kindle U.S., Kindle UK, Nook, Google Play, iBooks, Kobo or directly from publisher Carina Press.

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Thursday, June 08, 2017

Free book offer and giveaways - act fast!

I've shared these book promotions at various times and in assorted ways, so I wanted to gather them together in one post for easy access, especially since the deadlines are coming up relatively soon. The first two are giveaways; the third is a commitment to post a review in exchange for an electronic copy. Thank you for signing up and remember, I do monthly giveaways in my newsletter! I just bought a bunch of different titles, from Tasting Him and Tasting Her to my mile high club anthology Flying High to give away later in the year.

Win my femdom erotica anthology She's on Top - enter by Friday, June 16, 11:59 pm EST (newsletter subscribers only, open worldwide)
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The She's on Top giveaway is open to anyone who subscribes to my monthly newsletter (you must use the same email address as your subscription). I select a lot of winners for these monthly giveaways who I then have to reject either because the email address listed doesn't show up in my subscriber list or they've left an incomplete mailing address, so make sure both of those fields are filled in correctly! Fun fact: This is one of my favorite book covers for my books, and one I've gotten a lot of wonderful comments on. I don't generally have anything to do with my book covers aside from weighing in with my opinion (ultimately that choice is ultimately left to the publisher in almost every case I've been involved with, though I'm lucky because with over 60 books, I only truly hated one, Glamour Girls, put out by a now defunct press), so it's always exciting when a cover image really wows me.

Win a copy of Best Women's Erotica of the Year, Volume 2 - enter by June 15, 2017 (U.S. only)
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The BWE of the Year 2 giveaway is only open to U.S. residents. (Why? Because overseas postage is astronomically expensive. It leapt up a lot over the last few years, so while I do newsletter giveaways overseas, I can't do them all that way and still afford to buy books for giveaways!)

Get On Fire: Erotic Romance Stories free in exchange for an honest review - sign up by June 18, 2017, 11:59 pm EST
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This one is the easiest; sign up, and I email you the book! The final giveaway isn't a contest, but an offer of a free copy of my summer anthology On Fire in exchange for an honest review on Amazon and/or Goodreads. Since, for reasons stated above, I can't send free print copies to everyone I encounter, I'm doing an electronic copy giveaway and hoping to give this book a little extra attention online with the reviews. These help authors immensely (as in, I consider them my number one way of promoting my books), because of things like Amazon's algorithm and because potential readers/buyers can see what others liked or didn't like about the book, and act accordingly.

So I consider this a win/win; lots of people are getting to try a free book they may or may not have picked up on their own, and I and my authors are getting invaluable feedback. And if the words "book review" intimidate you, fear not; all I ask is that the review is honest and at least one sentence long and, as you'll see in the signup above, contain the line "I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review" to comply with FTC standards. Beyond that, anything goes and on Amazon you get an email confirming your review has been posted, and on Goodreads you can see your review immediately. Lastly, if this goes well (meaning if the large majority of people actually follow through and leave reviews), I will likely do this for future books I've edited, so keep that in mind.

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Friday, June 02, 2017

Like free erotica books? Subscribe to my monthly newsletter!

Since I'm both sending out signed copies of Please, Sir to May's newsletter giveaway winners and sending out June's newsletter today, now's a good time to remind you that if you like free erotica books and want to know what I'm up to, you can subscribe at rachelkramerbussel.com or the left-hand side of this blog, Lusty Lady. I send one newsletter per month. You can also keep up with me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and, less frequently lately, Tumblr. If you want to know when my books are on sale, like the current Big Book of Submission $1.99 ebook sale that ends tomorrow, June 3rd, follow me at BookBub and you'll get notified any time my books are on sale, books with my short stories are on sale and when I have a new release.

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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

On Fire has a hot cover and even hotter stories and you can review it early!

I'm thrilled that on July 18, the ebook edition of my latest Cleis Press anthology, On Fire: Erotic Romance Stories, will be out (the print edition hits stores August 8). This book is super hot, as befitting an anthology titled On Fire. It's also one that I got delayed on, so I'm extra excited that it's almost out in the world and determined to have these wonderful authors read as widely as possible, because they are seriously hot. Many of them are different from what I've published before; I've got a vampire story here ("Masquerade") and a femdom story ("Dreams Made Flesh") and sexy swingers (my story "The Dance") and so much more..

While most of my books are in bookstores across the country (and occasionally outside the U.S.), the vast majority of you read them as ebooks or listen to them as audiobooks. I love this, both as a price conscious shopper, because people can buy more ebooks since they tend to be cheaper, hence they get to read more, and because I have always had a vision of my books being as accessible as possible. When I took a vacation in Honolulu, I was overjoyed that some of my books were on the shelves at Barnes & Noble. It was like I'd visited Hawaii before I even got there! So I want them out in as many formats as they can possibly be. The On Fire audiobook, narrated by my favorite narrator in the world, Rose Caraway, who I've worked with on 10 other audio titles, will be out at the end of July.

Getting back to accessibility...here's the scoop: Some of the books I've edited since I started this journey way back when are out of print, most likely never to return to bookstore shelves, and lots of those never got an ebook or audiobook edition because they were published before that was so common. Some publishers I've worked with have folded, some books quietly didn't sell and have pretty much vanished. It happens, but these days I work far harder to get my books "out there" and am determined that the ones I put out now stay in print/as ebooks and audiobooks for a long, long time, ideally throughout my lifetime. To that end, I want to spread the word to as many readers and potential readers as possible. This is both my livelihood and my passion, but that means that if my books don't sell, out of financial necessity, I'll have to stop editing them and move on to something else to sustain myself, because I believe equal pay also means, Work only for what you're worth. That's a discussion for another time, but my point is, I both want and need my books to reach lots of readers. My personal goal is always to have each new book outsell the last. Of course I can't control that, but I can set it as my goal to push myself to try harder with each release and explore new avenues of reaching readers in this vast world of endless books available to you at the click of a button 24/7. It's a world I love and indulge in myself as a consumer, but it also makes it more challenging to make any single title stand out.

All of this is to say that the #1 way I promote my books and drive sales is through readers like you leaving reviews on sites like Amazon and Goodreads. Yes, over the years I've tried ads on book-related websites, I've paid to fly myself here, there and everywhere, I've made postcards and bookmarks and buttons. I won't say I've tried everything, but of all the methods of book promotion I've tried, having honest reviews on the main sites where readers congregate has been what gets other people interested. This is partly because of how the algorithms on those sites work, so the books of mine with the most reviews, such as The Big Book of Orgasms, almost always sell better than the ones with fewer reviews.

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So until June 18, one month before the ebook release, I'm offering all of you a free e-copy of On Fire, with the request that you leave an honest review of at least one sentence on Amazon (U.S.) and/or Goodreads. To comply with FTC rules, your review should state a version of, "I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review." And that's it! Read one story, or two, or all 20. Share the one you loved the most, the one you liked least, what turned you on, what intrigued you...that part is up to you. I can't tell you what to write, I can only tell you that I am so proud of this book and all the sexiness contained in it. It's filed under "erotic romance" but I think it's safe to say if you like erotica, you'll like much of it, and if you like romance, you'll like much of it. Here's the official blurb about it and endorsements by two authors whose writing I adore (thank you, Charlotte and Elizabeth!):

"Every story is a sinfully sexy yet always romantic delight." Charlotte Stein, author of Never Sweeter

On Fire is a delicious collection of sensual, luxurious erotic shorts, like bites of the finest chocolate that linger on your tongue.” Elizabeth SaFleur, author of the Elite Doms of Washington series
In On Fire, today’s top erotic romance authors don’t skimp on love or lust--they are entwined in tales that will make pulses pound and hearts race. Bestselling editor Rachel Kramer Bussel takes us inside the passions of couples who go above and beyond in their pursuit of sexual and romantic satisfaction, exploring the racy to the outrageous during their many arousing adventures. You’ll treasure the sex toy exploration in “Every Second of It,” find paranormal pleasure in “Masquerade,” and be transported to “A Place As Beautiful As This.” You’ll go “Beyond the Blindfold,” find out what lurks in the “Art of Darkness,” and delight in discovering “The Sweetest Thing.” These steamy stories by Kristina Wright, Delilah Devlin, Giselle Renarde, Kay Jaybee, Victoria Blisse, Jade A. Waters and others are perfect intimate reads to enjoy with your lover or for your own pleasure.
You can see the full table of contents and my introduction on the book's Tumblr.

That's my spiel. If you want to review the book, leave your name and email address in this form by June 18, 2017 at 11:59 pm EST. I'll send you the PDF and then you can post your review any time at Goodreads and starting July 18, 2017 on Amazon. Of course if you want to review it elsewhere, such as on a blog, other book retailer, etc., that is wonderful, but all I am asking is for you review on either Goodreads and/or Amazon.com (U.S.), which are the sites most of my readers use. If you want to do an extra erotica good deed, you can add the book to your "want to read list" on Goodreads (you'll see the button when you click the Goodreads link above). Again, I'm not an expert, but I believe Goodreads factors in which books have the most people listing them as want to read and promotes/showcases those books more widely. My hope is a) you'll find something, or many things, that entertains you and b) you'll discover a new author whose work you'll want to keep on reading. Thank you in advance and here's to On Fire and a sexy summer!

And if you're sitting there thinking, But I really want a free print copy of On Fire, I'll be giving those away in my monthly newsletter in July, so subscribe on the left-hand side of my Lusty Lady blog or at rachelkramerbussel.com. June's newsletter giveaway will be to win a copy of my femdom anthology She's on Top!

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Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Win my BDSM erotica anthology Please, Sir - enter by Wednesday, May 31!

Every month I give away books to my newsletter subscribers. If you haven't subscribed, you can do so on the left-hand side of this blog, Lusty Lady, or at my website, rachelkramerbussel.com (which may be experiencing some temporary technical difficulties), or at my Facebook page. This month's giveaway is 10 copies of my BDSM erotica anthology Please, Sir - enter using this Google form (which only I see). The deadline to enter is May 31, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. EST. Make sure to use the email address you're subscribed to the newsletter with and include your full mailing address - I sometimes have to pick a new winner when there's an incomplete address.

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Monday, May 29, 2017

BDSM erotica sale alert: The Big Book of Submission is $1.99 through June 3!

Happy news: now through June 3, The Big Book of Submission: 69 Kinky Tales is only $1.99 thanks to my awesome publisher, Cleis Press. Buy links are below, and something else cool: If you are an audiobook fanatic, you can get the Audible audiobook version of these 69 stories read by Rose Caraway for the discount price of just $7.49 after you purchase the Kindle edition.

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Buy The Big Book of Submission for $1.99 until June 3rd for:

Kindle

Nook

Google Play

iBooks

Kobo

Here's a little more about what's in the book:
Submission takes many forms in this collection of 69 short stories, from straining in bondage to taking a spanking, being put on display, and beyond. By turns bratty and worshipful, these submissives will go to great lengths to fulfill their naughtiest fantasies and are rewarded splendidly by their masters and mistresses. A student returns to show his former teacher who’s really in charge, a photo shoot becomes an opportunity for erotic games, and a man revels in his wife’s past as a former dominatrix. These brats, masochists, and hungry-for-sensation subs go above and beyond for the ones they adore, pushing themselves to new limits while their devious dominants put them through their paces. Edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel, these short stories sizzle with the tension of erotic power play, commands followed, and service willingly performed.
Want to be the first to know when my books go on sale? Follow me on Bookbub and you'll get an email whenever they're at rock bottom prices.

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And if you like this book, stay tuned for The Big Book of Submission Volume 2 out in December in ebook form and January in print!

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