Erotica Readers & Writers Association Blog

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Writing Exercise - The Gwawdodyn

by Ashley Lister

The gwawdodyn (pronounced GWOW-DOD-IN) is a Welsh form of poetry that is presented in a variety of different guises. Differences are argued on the presentation of the rhyme scheme of the third and fourth lines. However, my favourite interpretation of this form is illustrated by the poem below.

There’s no greater pleasure than kissing
I say this whilst we’re reminiscing.
Your lips against mine: our tongues intertwined
Let’s try it: find out what you’re missing.

This version of the gwawdodyn follows this structure:

x x x x x x x x a
x x x x x x x x a
x x x x b x x x x b
x x x x x x x x a

Each x represents a syllable. Lines 1, 2 and 4 each have nine syllables, and an ‘a’ rhyme. Line 3 has ten syllables and an internal ‘b’ rhyme.

Keep in mind there are other versions of this (and perhaps the reason I like this one so much is because it reminds me of the limerick). As always, I look forward to seeing your poetry in the comments box below.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Erotic Lure Newsletter: Fall 2015 Edition

From Erotica Readers & Writers Association
By Lisabet Sarai

Dear Denizens of the Dark Side,

Welcome to the Fall edition of the Erotica Readers & Writers Association! October's here, Halloween's around the corner, and we've got plenty of treats waiting for you (plus a trick or two).

The Erotica Gallery in this edition is so amazing, it's practically supernatural. To start with, we have five Awesome Authors serving up their sexy stories for your personal pleasure. From the dangerous delights of an anonymous bar pickup to a holiday tryst with a horny MILF, these authors will prepare you for the traditional devilish debauchery associated with All Hallow's Eve. Then sample some of the offerings from our ERWA contributors --stories, quickies, flashers and poems, all fantastic and totally free. Whether you like it sweet or nasty, we'll satisfy your appetite for erotic fare. Don't miss our traditional October feature La Petite Mort. Our authors adore sending chills up your spine while warming your other parts.

Words make magic:

The Books for Sensual Readers section is a cornucopia overflowing with the fruits of fantasy. Rachel Kramer Bussel has two new anthologies out, I WANT YOU BAD (obsessive erotic romance) and DIRTY DATES (kinky couples fiction). Some of my very favorite authors have new releases, including Charlotte Stein's luscious sounding THE PROFESSOR, a tale of a stern professor and his very naughty student; Portia Da Costa's Black Lace classic HOTBED, featuring a pair of sisters, one wild, one shy and virtuous--until now; Ashley Lister's novel of passion, betrayal and gourmet food, JUST DESSERTS; and Victoria Blisse's sizzling vampire romance THE POINT OF EVIL. Looking for a hot gay read? Check out Eli Easton's THE TROUBLE WITH TONY, about a PI who goes undercover--way undercover--masquerading as a patient in a sex clinic. My pick for lesbian fiction is Valerie Brundage's DEAD MAN'S CURVES, a novel about love between women friends that defies labels.

This is, as usual, just a small sampling of the fabulous books we've assembled for your delectation. Check out our categorized listings of anthologies, novels, erotic romance, vintage and modern classics, gay and lesbian fiction, and sexy sex ed. You're bound to find something that tickles your tingle. And once you do, please use our affiliate links to Amazon, B&N or iTunes to buy. Every click helps support the delightfully dirty-minded demons who labor to bring you a new ERWA edition every quarter.

Join us under the covers:

Let's see, what's next? How about a quick tour of the Sex Toy Playground? You may not know much about history, but the folks at Adam & Eve do. They've got a fun, enlightening article about the history of sex toys. The regular Sex Toy Scuttlebutt column, in contrast, highlights the ultimate in modern erotic apparatus. Consider, for instance, the Kgoal Smart Kegel Exerciser. Yes, it hooks up to your smart phone, and offers you an instant reward for working on your pelvic muscle tone... You have to read about it to believe it.

If you want one (or more), we've got links to all the best adult toy stores: Adam & Eve, Good Vibrations, and Gamelink Adult Products.

Just the thing for the trick or treat bag...

Adult Movies are our natural next stop. Porn and toys go together like apple pie and ice cream. This month's features include Brad Armstrong's stunning opus "Aftermath", a powerful tale of sexual awakening and forbidden love. My "dirty smutty porn" pick is "Innocence Bound". Watch--no, drool--as four sweet, uncorrupted young women are bound, used and initiated into the mysteries of lust. My classic recommendation is the last film by Henry Paris (aka Radley Metzger), the 1970's masterpiece "Maraschino Cherry". And just in time to answer all those questions raised by The Book That Shall Not Be Named, we bring you "A Lover's Guide to Erotic Submission", a two-disc set--one disk with instructional material, one that's simply

Amorous apparitions await you:

Inside the Erotic Mind this month, we're recalling our favorite steamy scenes from mainstream movies. Feel free to share the films that push YOUR personal buttons. Just click on "Participate" and fill in the form.

Arousal begins in the mind:

Authors, I haven't forgotten you. The list of publishing opportunities in our Authors Resources section gets longer every week. Yes, we do update this section frequently, whenever we get new information. We also post all new calls on the ERWA blog,

Recent calls for submission include an anthology of geeky kink tales; Coming Together: On Wheels, a motorcycle- and racecar-themed charity anthology; and a call for lesbian power exchange fiction from Harper Bliss. If these three possibilities don't inspire you, spend a few minutes browsing the other listings. We have literally dozens of publishers on the page, and guess what? They want YOUR work!

Even if you're a top--submit!

And speaking of the authoring process, you may be interested in the sponsor for this edition of the Lure, Bookalope. Bookalope  is a new website that provides simple and interactive book conversions for electronic and print publication. Its tools grew from years of experience working with authors on their books, and now Bookalope offers these tools to everybody.

The process is easy, intuitive and saves time, while it hides most of the technical stuff. After uploading a file, Bookalope analyzes the visual styling of the text and, with some help from the user, extracts the structured book. Next, it checks the content for spelling and errors in punctuation and typography, and the user may choose to have them corrected. After that, the book is ready for conversion for Kindle, Nook, or iPad, into print-ready PDF, or InDesign or Word for continued editing and design.
Details at:

That wraps up this edition of the Erotic Lure. I certainly haven't covered all the goodies on the site, but I'd rather let you explore on your own. Who knows what (or whom) you'll find in some shadowy corner?

As for me, it's less than a month before Halloween, and I still haven't settled on a costume. I'm torn between Morticia Adams and Elvira Queen of the Dark. Black becomes me, and I do love the way a deeply plunging neckline shows off my -- umm -- assets...

Lustfully yours,

What if the government stole your libido? What would you do to get it back?
THE ANTIDOTE - Science fiction erotica by Lisabet Sarai
Buy now!

Visit Lisabet Sarai's Fantasy Factory
Check out Lisabet's blog
Join Lisabet's List

Write, learn, and play on ERWA. Details at:

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Call for Submissions

First Annual Geeky Kink Anthology
Publisher: Riverdale Avenue Books
Deadline: October 30, 2015
Payment: 33% royalties on digital and 8% on print

In connection with Riverdale Avenue Books, we're looking for new and/or previously published stories featuring geeky kinkiness. Or kinky geekiness. How does your inner geek get their rocks off? Have you turned that amazing scene where you were Twilight Sparkle giving it to another bound pony right in the Pinkie Pie? Got a hot hunt short story about Boba and Han? Maybe a story set AT the GKE? Send it in!

Submission guidelines at:

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

On Second Thought

By K D Grace

When I lived in Croatia a hundred years ago, I spent three weeks every summer camping on the

Adriatic near Pula. At the campsite where I stayed, there was a small store and a restaurant that had live music every night. There were several buildings with showers and toilets. That was the extent of the place.

One of the shower blocks not far from where I set up my tent was a narrow concrete pre-fab with a row of cubicles, each containing a shower, each with a door leading right out onto the main path through the camp. One year one of the six cubicles was missing a door. That meant more congestion for the remaining shower units, which were in high demand in August. There was almost always a queue. 

Early one evening on my way back from the grocery store, I noticed two very fit German blokes I’d seen wind surfing earlier in the day queuing for the shower, but they got tired of waiting, so they stripped off their Speedos and waltzed right on in to the cubicle without the door. 

I happened to be with a friend who was a bit more prudish than I, and she averted her eyes and dragged me away in a huff, me nearly breaking my neck for one last glance over my shoulder at naked, wet maleness. The whole incident couldn’t have lasted more than a minute. What I saw was fleeting. But what I imagined – over and over and over again – was most definitely not!

So why do I bring this up? Last month, just back from Scotland, I wrote about the inspiration a writer gets from images and shared a few examples. This month, I’d like to explore the inspiration we get from that glorious, super-high-tech instant replay in our brain. 

My voyeuristic encounter at the showers stands out to me as outrageously erotic, and yet nothing happened. Two blokes got tired of waiting in queue for the shower, probably anxious to get to dinner and a cold beer, so they chose to shower in full view of hundreds of people they didn’t know, hundreds of people who would never see them again. BUT, they were wrong, I’ve seen them countless times in my imagination – sometimes sun bleached and golden in the late afternoon light, sometimes dark, tattooed and dangerous just before dusk, beckoning me to come join them, speaking softly to me in German -- words I don’t understand, though I completely get their meaning. I know exactly what those boys want, as they leer at me and I leer back. 

In some of those instant replays, I meet them on the beach at midnight to share a bottle of wine and a naked swim in the warm moonlit waters. In some of those instant replays, I shoo my prudish friend back to her tent, then strip off shamelessly and join them, letting them soap me and rinse me and protect me with their naked, glistening bodies from the gaping onlookers. In other versions, they come to the shower late at night when everyone else is asleep, and only I’m there to watch them lather and bathe each other, thorough in their efforts to get clean, more thorough in their efforts to relieve the tensions of the day. 

Everyone has an instant replay in their brain that allows them to rewind, slo-mo, enhance, zoom in on any part of any experience or image that catches their fancy, and then enjoy it a second or even a 50th time around. We can take that experience and totally change it if we choose. We do it all the time; in our heads, we rewrite the ending of an interview that didn’t go so well or an argument with a lover so that we can take back what we wish we hadn’t said. Sometimes we imagine what would have happened next if things had been allowed to unfold to the end, if I had been allowed to linger a little longer in front of the showers. In fact, we can be really neurotic about it, playing the same scenes over and over and obsessing on them, for good or for ill. 

Writers are especially adept at using this instant replay to inspire, to arouse, to tease out and focus on details we might otherwise have missed, details that might have totally intrigued us the first time around, even details that weren’t really there. Then we write those details into whole new sexy scenarios, sometimes even whole novels. 

I know, I know! It’s all a part of memory. Anyone can hit the ole instant replay button at any time and
experience the past all over again. We all do that. But there’s nothing ordinary about the ability to relive our experiences and imagine ourselves in a different life – perhaps even as different people who make a different decision; perhaps the decision to strip off and shower with the German wind-surfers. The creative process of a writer depends on the exploitation of that instant replay button. I can’t think of anything I’ve written that isn’t grounded in some way, no matter how miniscule, in my recalling of an experience, my reimagining of a moment, or my reworking of an image that intrigues me. In a very real sense, we are what we write as we wind back the video in the editing room of our brain and hit replay, then hit slo-mo, then zoom in real nice and tight-like so that we can enhance and recreate every detail to tell a brand new story.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Pouring Your Soul Onto The Page

Elizabeth Black writes in a wide variety of genres including erotica, erotic romance, and dark fiction. She lives on the Massachusetts coast with her husband, son, and three cats. Visit her web site, her Facebook page, and her Amazon Author Page.

People who know me know I write horror and dark fiction as well as erotica and erotic romance. I'm going to meet writer Jack Ketchum in mid-October at the Stanley Hotel Writers Retreat. That's the hotel in Estes Park, Colorado, where Stephen King stayed that inspired him to write The Shining. While Ketchum is a horror writer, what he had to say about digging down into dark recesses of your soul to get to the meat of your characters applies to any genre. This excerpt is from an essay he wrote for the book Horror 101: The Way Forward:

"Dig into the dark mean night of your soul." Remember Peter Straub's line in Ghost Story? What's the worst thing you've ever done? Well, what its it?

What god-awful things have you fantasized doing but would never do?

What's the worst thing you can imagine actually happening to you? To your loved ones?

What breaks your heart?

Use your damage. Write from the wound. Go as deep as you dare. Stare into your own abyss and report back. No need to reveal everything – children have to learn how to lie a little, or else they grow up without protection, and so do we writer types. But you need ot embrace the damage as a co-conspirator, as uniquely you, as something you can use. Throw it out there into the light, to a place where it can do some good for others and maybe even for yourself.

You need to be honest. Really good fiction is always an attempt at total honesty. Be true to both the good and the downright dangerous inside. See them as clearly as you can, use your empathy, search out your characters in your own heart and write them as though they were you. They are you, you know. Every one of them, if you do it right.

When I dig down into my soul to get to the heart of my characters, I feel exposed and vulnerable. There have been a few stories I've written I decided against publishing because they feel too close. Too personal. Some of the stories I have published make me feel over-exposed. Although a publisher liked the story enough to publish and sell it, I don't necessarily feel comfortable letting people read it because I feel like the reader will get a glimpse of me I'd rather keep private. My short story Longing in Coming Together: Among The Stars and my novel Don't Call Me Baby are excellent examples of my picking at a festering wound in my soul I won't let heal, and I allow everyone on earth to read about it.

Longing is about my fear of growing old and forgetting who I am. Or my husband losing his faculties and losing his memory of me. The story is about a woman whose husband suffers from dementia and he can't remember who she is. I based the husband on my husband and on a friend who suffers from dementia. I watched this friend devolve from a vibrant and genius-level intelligent human being to a shell of his former self. I don't like to think about it anymore, but I needed to express my profound distress at watching what had happened to him. Likewise, I am over 50 and my husband is over 60. Aging is very much in the forefront of my mind, and I am terrified of losing the sense of who I am and who he is. I know it's a normal rite of passage for someone my age, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

Don't Call Me Baby is semi-autobiographical. I deal head-on with two affairs with married men I had when I was in college. What possessed me to do something as self-hating and stupid as that? The book was in part about my fear of losing my identity to another man's wishes and demands. I watched some of my girlfriends turn from independent and interesting women to creatures who lived to please their boyfriends and fianc├ęs. I didn't want to turn into a Stepford wife. I was afraid that to fall in love meant having to turn my will completely over to a man, and I didn't want to do that. So I chose men who were not only unavailable, but who also couldn't complain when I chose to date multiple men at once. I couldn't get too close to them, and they couldn't get too close to me. I'm very much aware of how selfish this all sounds. Catherine Stone, my heroine in the book, is also very selfish as well as a bit pig-headed. She does meet a man who doesn't interfere with her freedom, and how she learns to trust him is an important part of the book. At that time in my life, I had not yet met that man, and I wouldn't meet him for several decades.

I've noticed the common thread between both stories – my fear of losing the sense of myself. Growing old, losing my sense of myself, ending up alone surrounded by my dozens of cats, and becoming homeless are four of my greatest fears. I've looked into them in some of my stories, especially the horror stories.

What are you afraid of? What fears drive you throughout your life? How would you answer Jack Ketchum's questions? What god-awful things have you fantasized doing but would never do? What is the worst thing you can imagine happening to you? To your loved ones? Use the raw emotions behind the answers to bring your characters to life. Like Ketchum said, you don't need to reveal everything in your writing. However, you need to know that side of your character to make that person human.

Escapism is a wonderful thing to enjoy, especially in erotica and erotic romance. Every woman who enjoys a good sexy story likes being swept off her feet and taken to a fantasy world. I've written escapist fantasies as well. These stories are driven by some of my fears but they aren't gut-wrenching.  My two erotic fairy tales Trouble In Thigh High Boots (Puss In Boots) and Climbing Her Tower (Rapunzel) as well as my short lesbian erotic romance Like A Breath Of Ocean Blue and my erotic fantasy A Dance Of Ocean Magic fall into this category. The main characters in those stories have their weaknesses and faults, but the stories have an otherworldly and magical quality to them that helps the reader escape her mundane, daily concerns. She can get lost in another fun world for a few hours.

When it comes to raw and uncomfortable emotion, I prefer the realistic approach, even if the story is fantasy or science fiction. If I wonder if the reader will disapprove of me or not like me, I know I'm on the right track. I know the reader may criticize my character's choices, but those choices led my character down the path toward her maturation. Sometimes that maturation is found through trusting a partner in a vulnerable sex act. At few other times are we more vulnerable than when we are spread out, naked and exposed, before someone we care about. How will your partner treat you? Will you be cared for or abused? It's all a matter of trust.

My story Longing appears in Coming Together: Among The Stars.

Don't Call Me Baby

Trouble In Thigh High Boots

Climbing Her Tower

My story Like A Breath of Ocean Blue appears in Best Lesbian Romance Of The Year, Vol. 1, published by Cleis Press.

A Dance Of Ocean Magic will soon appear in the erotic anthology Forbidden Fruit, to be published by Sweetmeats Press.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

The Passing of a Visionary

by Jean Roberta

Since it’s my turn to post here today, I would just like to note the sad passing of an amazing photographer, Honey Lee Cottrell, on September 21, at the too-young age of 69.

Honey Lee, Tee Corinne (who is already gone) and JEB (Joan Biren), were a kind of Holy Trinity of photographers and visual artists who created the look of lesbian visual representation from the late 1970s through the 1990s. Anyone who has seen a lesbian sex manual or erotic magazine (particularly On Our Backs) from that era has seen their work.

Words can’t convey how these three pioneers managed to bring the previously-unspeakable eroticism of women with women into visual form. Those of us who lived far away from any queer mecca (San Francisco, parts of New York) were given hope by these women’s artwork to believe that nirvana might actually exist somewhere, or that it was coming into being.

In the 1980s, here in a government town on the Canadian prairie, I worked for minimum wage in a collectively-run “alternative” bookstore. (It was founded by a husband and wife who loved science fiction.) I was proud of the small lesbian section that featured books that managed to sneak across the border from Bookpeople (a major distributor in California), despite the efforts of Canada Customs to stop all “obscene” material from entering Canada from elsewhere. Every time I saw the latest issue of On Our Backs, carefully packed at the bottom of a box by someone who knew the score, I was thrilled. Honey Lee Cottrell’s unusual erotic subjects smiled back at me as if to say that eventually, we would all have our place in the sun.

I hope she is now in a place as beautiful as she ever imagined.