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'08 Authors Insider Tips


Everything About Epublishing
by Angela James
Epublishing: A Different Way
Choosing an Epublisher
Your Milage May Vary
Understand Your Contract!
Reasonable Expectations


FictionCraft
by Louisa Burton
The Publishing Biz
Critiquing: To Give and ...
Commerical vs. Literary...
Antiformalism for Fun &...
So You Want to Write a Novel
The Story Idea
Planning Your Novel...


The Write Stuff
by Ashley Lister
5 Steps to Success
Inspirational
Opening Passages
Let's Get Critical
Writer's Block
Learning Lessons


Two Girls Kissing
by Amie M. Evans
Be a Finisher ...
Listen to Your Characters
Conferences: Act Now ...
Starting an Erotic Story
Exercises & Writing Prompts
Revising & Rewriting
Copy Editing
The Manuscript Critique
How to Submit Your Work
Reading as Craft


Guest Appearances

Adventures in e-Publishing
by Lisabet Sarai

For the Love of Man
by Laura Baumbach

How to...Influence Editors
by Alison Tyler

Marketing your e-Book
by Brenna Lyons


2008 Smutters Lounge

Ashley Lister Submits
by Ashley Lister
Role Play
Busy Doing Nothing
Picture of a Fish & Chip...
What I Did With My Summer


Cooking Up A Storey
by Donna George Storey
Naughty Cookies...
Tie Me Up, Please …
The Smut-Writer’s Holiday
Never Trust the Narrator ...
Compare and Contrast
Following the Pen
Naked at the Farmers Market
I’m Easy, But I’m No Slut
Good Girl Gone Bad
Pleasures of the Dark Side
Slow, Spare and Sexy


Get All Worked Up
with J.T. Benjamin
Raising Daughters
Jamie Lynn
Utopias
Lust
The Good Old Days
Election '08
Traditional Marriage
Campaign 2008
Free Will


Pondering Porn
with Ann Regentin
Masturbating on SSRIs
Sex and Disability
Besides Ourselves
Adjusting our Contrast


Sex Is All Metaphors
by Jean Roberta
Sex Is All Metaphors
Turn-ons and Squicks
Sexual Truth
Fickle Muse
Porn, Erotica & Romance


Provocative Interviews

Between the Lines
with Ashley Lister
Alison Tyler
Ashley Lister
Debra Hyde
Donna George Storey
Jeremy Edwards
Kristina Wright
Rachel Kramer Bussel


Erotic Hot Spots
by William S. Dean
Interview with Tilly Greene
Interview with Devyn Quinn


Getting Graphic
with William S. Dean
New Times for Readers...
The Future in Words ...
Interview with Fantagraphics


On Writing Erotica

The Accidental Pornographer
by Lisabet Sarai

The End of Innocence
by Lisabet Sarai

Get Them Off in High Style
Helena Settimana

So, You Want To Write Erotica?
by Hanne Blank


Web Gems
Hot Movies For Her

Cooking up a Storey
by Donna George Storey


The Smut-Writer’s Holiday:
In Praise of Sexier Valentines, Custom-made Customs,
and the Creamiest Chocolate Body Paint in the World



Cooking up a Storey by Donna George Storey It occurred to me just as I was sitting down to write this month’s column that Valentine’s Day—with its perfect blend of sex, food, and writing—is my holiday. No other holiday celebrates sex so freely, although eros does tend to be modestly cloaked in romance. Chocolate and fancy dinners are de rigueur for the occasion. Stationers do a brisk business, too, selling an array of wares from packages of Pokemon Valentines for kids to racy, wink-wink greeting cards for the over-18 crowd. I’d even say some of those quipping cards are clever enough to qualify as good writing.

However, I’m not selfish enough to claim February 14 as mine alone. It belongs to all erotica writers. After all, we do a service to the world. We keep the relationship between mind, heart and libido alive and … interesting. And so, while we’re sipping our champagne this year, let’s raise a glass to our own creative efforts and the work of our fellow writers. We deserve it.

Interestingly enough, until now, I’ve never felt much of a personal connection to my holiday. As a child I dutifully scrawled my name on a stack of tiny, pre-printed cards to pass out at school, one for each classmate whether I liked him/her or not. I actually loathed the whole concept in my teens and early twenties. I was either unattached—and thus mocked by the stacks of glossy heart-shaped boxes and the handsome men carrying bouquets through the streets—or I had a boyfriend and dreaded the inevitable stuffed animal with a pink bow to add to my collection. In a desperate rebellion against cuteness, I took to arranging the fuzzy bears and puppies in daisy-chain orgies, much to the amusement of friends and visitors to my dorm room. (Don’t worry, I only started doing this the day I turned eighteen).

As you see, my roots as an erotica writer run deep.

Once I’d settled down with my regular Valentine, the day became an excuse to buy fine chocolates for us to share. These days there are plenty of high quality bonbons to be had, even in my local supermarket—Moonstruck, Lake Champlain, Joseph Schmidt. Every few years I really splurge and order a box of pralines from Wittamer in Brussels, a chocolatier on the Place du Grand Sablon, known by many (including myself) as the finest candy maker in the world. Other years I’ll indulge in some lingerie. However, since my husband tends to relieve me of my new costume at the first opportunity, I’m always left to wonder why he’s in such a hurry, if indeed he likes it as much as he claims.

That’s the other good thing about Valentine’s Day. It’s an excuse to have more sex. And more sex—good sex—definitely makes the world a happier place. But I think there’s even more fun to be had on February 14, an untapped potential to remake the day into a creative and meaningful celebration. But wait, you may say, (don’t ask why I’m putting words in your mouth, just play along), isn’t the point of holidays to follow along, sheep-like, with customs handed down by generations of candy companies and florists, not to mention Hallmark?

That is one course of action, but there is another. Just as you can improvise a recipe, put an original twist on a literary convention and do a little something you’ve never tried before in bed tonight, traditions are meant to be messed with. I had my first inkling of the wonderful malleability of holiday customs the first February I spent in Japan, some twenty years ago. To my surprise, the stores were all well-stocked with clever chocolate novelties trimmed with red ribbon. Boxes of chocolate bandaids. Tiny chocolate tennis rackets and sets of chocolate golf balls. All much more creative than what I’d seen in the States—of course, in those days, we didn’t even have pink, red and white M&M’s. There were plenty of the familiar heart-shaped boxes, too, but given that most of the chocolate shoppers were young women in office lady uniforms—a navy blue skirt and vest over a white blouse—it all seemed very different from my image of the American Valentine’s Day. Stereotypical as it may be, I always think of men scurrying around buying roses and chocolates and champagne at the last minute to insure they’ll have a hot time in the sack that night. In our tradition, men were definitely the buyers.

I asked my Japanese friends and English conversation students a few key questions about what I’d observed and soon learned what was really going on. On Valentine’s Day in Japan, women give men the chocolate. Boyfriends get the nicest haul, the glittery heart boxes, but bosses of all levels and male co-workers also receive a token of esteem called giri-choco or “obligation chocolate.” There is no romantic interest implied in giving your boss a box of chocolate golf balls, it’s merely a way to add a touch of sweetness to a business relationship. Having read too many dull sociology books in preparation for my stay in Japan, I couldn’t help but link this to the classic Japanese concept of amaeru—meekly depending on people above you in the hierarchy—a word that is derived from the Japanese for “sweet.” This twist on our holiday also made a lot of business sense. Chivalry and the trappings of romance were definitely foreign concepts to Japanese men, especially twenty years ago. An American-style holiday was likely a hard sell to your average salaryman. Women, on the other hand, seemed quite enthusiastic about an excuse to buy chocolate molded into cute and clever shapes.

Japanese men weren’t completely off the hook, however. When you receive a gift in Japan, it is customary to give a return gift worth a certain fraction of the original. Thus, the savvy Japanese confectioners came up with “White Day” on March 14, when men were supposed to return the favor with a box of marshmallow candy or more recently, I’m told, cookies. My boyfriend at the time confessed that most men forgot to buy White Day treats. Indeed while he happily accepted my small gift of Godiva chocolates, we were no longer together a month later. I always wondered if there was a connection.

But back to my original point—if the Japanese can screw around with Valentine’s Day with impunity, why can’t we? Another bizarre, if iconic, American image I have of the holiday comes from a TV commercial for diamonds. A woman is scurrying around getting her children set up with DVDs, snacks and juice, while her husband looks on expectantly and a bit wistfully. Soon enough it’s clear what’s happening. The sex-deprived spouse has given his wife a diamond and she’s so thrilled, she’ll finally take time from her busy mom schedule to fuck him, and in the middle of the day at that! Lucky guy, all he has to do is plop down a few thousand bucks for a diamond doo-dad and he’ll get laid.

As the self-proclaimed “naughty Martha Stewart” I have to think there’s a more creative and economical way to get your lover in the sack. And it need not be a demanding craft or kitchen project, only something that bears your personal stamp and involves more expenditure of time and thought than money.

It’s really best to come up with your own idea, one suited to the chemistry of your relationship with your Valentine, but I have a few suggestions to get you started. Instead of a purchased card, write your own—funny, sweet, involving a filthy limerick, whatever you’re inspired to do. Or make a list of five sexy things you love about your lover and whisper it to him in bed before you do it. (Remember, most of the couples in the country are having sex on this night in a sort of “parallel play” orgy, which is sort of kinky if you think about it). If you’re not too burned out with your professional writing deadlines, write him or her a new short story. Even a brief, but specially tailored custom erotic scene can have electrifying results.

For the time-crunched literary aficionado, you could read aloud from another author’s story you’ve read that particularly arouses you. You and your lover could take turns with this one for double the fun, not to mention you’ll both gain insights into each other’s libidos. Whatever you do, the goal is customize Cupid’s day.

And that applies to the sweet treats, too. Nothing tastes better than something homemade with your own loving hand. Which leads me to this month’s recipe for stir-it-at-the-stove Chocolate Body Paint. One taste and you’ll never buy that packaged stuff again.

The recipe has been in my family for forty years—though not as an edible marital aid, but as our adaptation of the recipe for Chocolate Peanut Brittle Frosting which used to come with packages of Choco-bake. Choco-bake—a pre-melted, unsweetened chocolate that came in little packets and often separated into water and a thick goo when opened—is blessedly defunct in our more enlightened age. But the mid-20th-century recipe is still perfect for slathering all over your lover’s body because when it’s lukewarm, the ideal temperature for skin, it’s thick and custardy and will not drip all over the sheets. On a reasonably horizontal body part, you can lick it off very slowly indeed and there will be no mess. However, since I can’t account for possible passionate thrashing or the production of other wet, sticky substances, it may be best to put a towel down first anyway.

This sauce offers other sensual pleasures beyond making a nice condiment for naked skin. I love to watch a spoonful of the hot stuff roll down the side of a pale demi-globe of French vanilla ice cream perched in a footed glass dessert dish. It can serve as a cake topping—my mother used it to ice a buttery yellow sheet cake sans peanut brittle (I’ve never added peanut brittle, it’s too good plain). And it’s exquisite eaten by the fingerful straight from the refrigerator.

Without further ado, here’s the recipe for:

Valentine’s Day Chocolate Sauce/Body Paint to Make the Holiday Your Own

Combine in a heavy-bottomed saucepan:

1 cup sugar
1 5-ounce can evaporated milk
1/4 cup butter
1 egg, beaten
Dash salt

Cook over moderate heat until mixture thickens and begins to boil, stirring frequently, about five minutes. The mixture will darken a bit, to a golden color. Remove pan from the heat.

Add and stir to blend:

1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 oz. unsweetened high-quality chocolate, such as Ghirardelli 100%, broken in pieces (can be adjusted to taste)

Cool five minutes for a sundae sauce. Cool to lukewarm for use as a body paint. Cool completely before spreading on cake. And whatever you use it for, be proud because it’s very cool you made this yourself, with love, for all that is sexy and sweet.

Donna George Storey
February 2008


Donna is Cooking up a Storey in ERWA 2008 Archive.

______
"Cooking up a Storey" © 2008 Donna George Storey. All rights reserved. Content may not be copied or used in whole or part without written


About the Author: Donna George Storey taught English in Japan and Japanese in the United States and has finally found the work of her dreams writing erotica. If you’re really nice, she’ll bake you a batch of her Venetian cookies, with layers of marzipan, jam and chocolate, that take a ridiculous amount of time to make and are (almost) better than sex. Her work has been published in dozens of journals and anthologies including Clean Sheets, Fishnet, Best American Erotica, Best Women’s Erotica and Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica.
Her first novel, Amorous Woman--a semi-autobiographical tale of an American woman’s love affair with Japan and a number of sexy men and women along the way—was published by Neon/Orion in 2007. It’s currently available at Amazon UK and from her web site (DonnaGeorgeStorey.com) in the US. Stay tuned for a big US launch in June 2008.
For more of her musings on sensual pleasure and creativity stop by her blog: Sex, Food and Writing



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'08 Movie Reviews

Almost Perfect
Review by Oranje

The Fold
Review by Ashley Lister

Two
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Fallen
Review by Spooky

'08 Book Reviews

Anthologies

Best Bisexual Women's Erotica
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Best Fantastic Erotica
Review by Ashley Lister

Best Women's Erotica '08
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Bound Brits (ebook)
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Deep Inside: Extreme ...
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Dirty Girls
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Hide and Seek
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Hurts So Good
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J is for Jealousy
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K is for Kink
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Lust Bites
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Open for Business
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Possession
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Rubber Sex
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Rubber Sex
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Seriously Sexy
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Sex & Candy
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The Shadow of a... (poetry)
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Spanked
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Tasting Her
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Tasting Him
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Tasting Him
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White Flames
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Yes, Ma'am: Male Submission
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Yes, Sir: Female Submission
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Novels

The Art of Melinoe
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Demon by Day
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Gemini Heat
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Gothic Heat
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The Hidden Grotto Series
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The House of Blood
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In Too Deep
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In Too Deep
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Incognito
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Nicholas
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One Breath at a Time
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Out of the Shadows (ebook)
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Phantasmagoria
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Reckless
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Seduce Me
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Seduced by the Storm
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Serve the People!
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Signed, Sealed and Delivered
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Sunfire (eBook)
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Templar Prize
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The Wicked Sex
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Wild Kingdom
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Gay Erotica

Backdraft
Review by Vincent Diamond

Best Gay Romance '08
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Hard Hats
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Leathermen
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Lesbian Erotica

Best Lesbian Erotica '08
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Best Lesbian Erotica '08
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The Night Watch
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Non-Fiction

America Unzipped
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Best Sex Writing '08
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Bonk: The Curious Coupling
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The Book of Love
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Casanova: Actor Lover ...
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Dishonorable Passions
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Flagrante Delicto (photos)
Review by Jack Gilbert

The Flesh Press
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Geisha, Harlot, Strangler, Star
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The Humble Little Condom
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Instant Orgasm (sex guide)
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Man O Man! Writing M/M...
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The Not So Invisible Woman
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Swingers: Female...
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Who's Been Sleeping in...
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