September 04, 2015

Unplugging...



...for the weekend. But I will be back on Monday with a shiny new question—and a winner for the "Zero Fucks Given" pencils. Now, I want to keep a set in my purse and hand them out whenever I feel the need. Oh, look. I could carry the pencils in this case—because my dream is to drive around the country in a VW bus (a blue one in my fantasy) and visit all the independent bookstores left.

If you have spare reading time this weekend, please check out Even Deeper. The novella will be live on Monday, September 7th. This is the first time I've used the pre-order template. Not sure if I would do that again or simply go live from the very first second. But I appreciate the pre-orders so far, and I truly hope you enjoy this next installment in my story.

When I started writing this story—in 2006—I had no idea that nine years later I would still be wrangling the words. But I feel as if I'm getting stronger as a writer each day. Learning from my old mistakes and attempting not to make too many new ones!

XXX,
Alison

September 03, 2015

Getting It Right


I recently read an article (one might even call it a rant) against prolific writers. The argument isn't new. I'm actually related to someone (by marriage, luckily, and not blood) who believes each writer is only capable of producing one "good" book. No really. That was an ugly Thanksgiving. My dad nearly choked on his turkey.

I've also read the belief (put out by some writers) that successful authors should step down, stop writing, in order to give upcoming wordsmiths a little shelf space.

As a prolific writer, I'm obviously against the concept that someone should stop writing just because it—what?—annoys someone else? Won't qualify as literary? Is in some way subpar?

One of the positions I read recently stated that an author's excellent work might get lost in the mass of output.

First, I was simply baffled. When I discover a writer I admire, and I learn that person is prolific, I am thrilled. I devour everything I can.

And that's when I realized what I dislike the most about the argument.

1) A writer doesn't always know what is going to be his or her best work.
2) "Best work" is subjective.

I tend to be drawn to books, music, and art that doesn't always reach the mainstream. The books I adore—the words that move me—don't necessarily equal a writer's "best" or most popular. My favorite book—hands down—for more than twenty-five years—is Getting It Right. I know Elizabeth Jane Howard penned other books that readers may have enjoyed more or thought were better. (Some of her books own 70+ reviews. Getting It Right has four.) But this book completes me.

Then there's 3) What the fuck.

Really. It's like the people who put you down because you have tattoos. (This happened to me back in the day—before it was so acceptable to be inked.) And I remember hearing the ultimate response: The difference between people with tattoos and people without is that tattooed people don't care whether or not you have a tattoo.

Same fucking thing with writing. Write a lot. Write a little. But it's my opinion that prolific writers don't give a fuck how many words other writers are putting out there. A writer who thinks his or her words are better because there are fewer of them? Quality over quantity? Less is more?

I have one thing to say: You don't live in my head. I write the stories because there are voices telling me to. They never shut up. They never stop talking. I don't get a break. I have written well over one thousand stories. Many will never see the light of print. But I wouldn't know how to stop the words from coming. And why would I want to?

I woke up this morning with the idea for a three-way. Two men and a woman who pretends to be a blow-up doll. I don't know where the idea came from. I don't know how I will ultimately execute the piece. But I woke up because the characters were already nagging at me. 4 a.m. came early—and I fought with the voices for a moment. Before I gave in.

But this is what I know to be true: The reason I write as much as I do, as hard as I do, as early in the morning and as late in the evening as I do, is because ultimately I'm just trying to get it right.

XXX,
Alison

P.S. The longest story I've ever written began in 2006—and isn't finished yet. I don't know if I'll ever reach the end.

September 02, 2015

Dirty Etymology: Fuck


I was reminded this morning—by a conversation which included the word "slut"—that I hadn't delved into a dirty etymology in a while. Is it possible that I haven't researched the word "fuck"? I've tackled "motherfucker." But that's not the same at all.

Okay. So here goes...

Not only does "fuck" have its own Wikipage, "flying fuck" does, too. (I find that delightful.)

Wiki believes the word dates to 1475, and states that "fuck" can be used as "a noun, a verb, an adjective or an adverb." Which, of course, made me think about writing a dirty grammar guide. Because my brain works like that.

Snopes has a page proving that "fuck" does not come from the acronyms "for unlawful carnal knowledge" or "fornication under consent of the king." (Not that I thought it did.) Apparently, there are many false etymologies for "fuck"—which made this post a little more daunting than I originally expected.

The Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang states that fuck "almost certainly" comes from the root *peuk = "to prick."

(Oh, I love it. Have I done "prick" yet?)

Several sources stated that the first use of "fuck" was in code about the friars of Cambridge. When decoded, the line read: "They are not in heaven because the fuck the wives of Ely." (It's like reality TV—medieval style.)

"Fuck" is generally censored on radio and TV—although "motherfucker" and "cunt" are considered more offensive.

I just now tripped over the quote I use all the time: Fuck you, you fucking fuck. Apparently, this was featured in Blue Velvet (which I saw three times, but have almost no memory of).

An early-ish appearance of "fuck" in literature was Lady Chatterly's Lover (1928)—maybe this would be a possible sequel for our Bawdy Book Club. The Catcher in the Rye (1951) also features the word—which is one of the reasons that the classic stands at #13 in the most-banned books according to the ALA. Banned books make me crazy.

Type in "fuck" on Amazon, and you win 110,849 results. On Etsy, you'll find 7,919 items. But Google is the winner. Type in "fuck" and you will hit 459,000,000 results in a heartbeat.

We fucking love our "fuck," don't we?

Since this suits my attitude of late, I've decided to give a prize to a commenter on today's post. Yes, one lucky person will receive this "Zero Fucks Given" pencil. Because why the fuck not?

XXX,
Alison

P.S. I checked my novella. I used "fuck" fifty times in Even Deeper. I think that shows some restraint. The novella goes live on September 7th. Thank you to the readers who have already purchased this indie title!

September 01, 2015

Tuesdays with Chaucer

Let's all just pause to ponder how cool it is that Chaucer t-shirts exist. Whether you're reading the book in Middle English or Modern English doesn't matter to me. I'm using the copy we had on our shelf, which I'm fairly certain was my mother's. (Yes, this is my mother's Chaucer. Ha.)

So here we are. Our first week's check-in. (By the way—you can join any time. Someone wrote me this morning to ask if it was okay. Yes. Yes, it is okay. Please read with us!)

I'm using a Viking edition of The Portable Chaucer. (Mine looks different than this one, but it's the same translator.) The term "portable" cracks me up, because how portable is it, really? The thing weighs a ton and is (literally) 600 pages long.

I have to stop a lot to make sure I understand exactly what is being said. But let me share this: My favorite part about reading Chaucer? The reactions I've gotten so far.

"Oh, you're reading Chaucer!"
"Oooh, Chaucer!"
"Wow! You're reading Chaucer!"

That basically sums it up. People have been drawn to the book, wanting to tell me their experiences at college. "My professor never explained anything. You had to read an annotated version along with the main text in order to figure out what the fuck was going on. The professor would call on you in class to explain something, and woe unto you if you didn't do your research!"

I think seven different people have approached me to share their stories. I could almost write *that* story—the one about each Chaucer fan who wants to tell his or her reaction to the Miller's Tale!

Now, how about you? Are you enjoying the book? Which version are you reading? How far are you?

XXX,
Alison

P.S. Yesterday, I revealed that my new novella will be for sale on September 7th. This is the next installment in the story of Jack, Alex, and Samantha. The novella does include a portion I was giving away for free (the airplane ride to Paris). But as only a handful of readers had requested that PDF, I felt it wouldn't be a problem to include the journey with the section. Every sale helps—and I am grateful for each novella purchased.

August 31, 2015

Trollop with a Question #72


First things first... (That always makes me smile. I want to say, "No. No. First things third.") If you look up, you'll see the sparkling new release I finished polishing this weekend. Even Deeper begins where my trilogy left off. See, this was never supposed to be a trilogy. I have 500,000 words to divvy up. This portion is close to 20K. The novella is up for pre-order right now. You have no idea how much your support means to me.

Or maybe you do.

But let me say this... with all my rantings and all my ravings about publishing, the truth is that I live to write. I don't care the format. All I want is to put words on some type of page.

This weekend, I told a friend that my heaven would be writing in the mornings and then bringing my typewritten pages to a bar, where readers could pass them around, one set of eyes at a time. I'd sit at a corner booth with a tip jar. If you liked what I'd written, you could toss in a buck. Some type of lounge pianist—except with words.

So you'll probably hear me pitching this novella a lot. It's in the sidebar. It's in my head. Riendo is responsible for the beautiful cover, and she is paid for every sale. I worked the pages until they were all wrung out. I learned new pet phrases I had to kill. "Once more." Who knew? Who knew everything in my world happens "once more"?

Sigh. So that's my please, please buy my book pitch. Now, here's my Monday question, cleverly stolen from Kristina Wright. Last week, Ms. Wright said: "I have a bucket list of people I want to meet." She included Bruce Springsteen, Stephen King, Sommer Marsden, and me!

Now you:

Who would you love to meet? 

My list would so long... I'm going to have to put some time into this.

XXX,
Alison

P.S. Last week, I promised a scarf to one commenter. Trix is the winner of the scarf. I will make the same pitch this week—and I'll post a picture of the new scarf shortly.

August 28, 2015

Free Smut Friday


Yes, this tiny little HO-scale model is censored. Good. I wouldn't want anyone to be offended by her nudity. Of course, pervert that I am, I want to order the naked lady, and the photographer... and put them together in a slinky little tableau.

I was hoping to unveil my next big thing today. But the week got away from  me. So I'll see if I can finish up the project for next Friday and try not to beat myself up too much.

Instead, here is Your Daily Porn. 250 words crafted on demand. Inspired, this time, by... well, you'll see.

The Naked Lady and the Photographer

She stood in the window and looked at the city. She’d grown up in the flatlands. From her bedroom window, you could see golden wheat. Now, she lived across from a high rise—no wheat in sight. But the sun turned the windows gold.

At her office, she dressed with sophisticated elegance. The farm was so far in the distance, she had to close her eyes to remember the way the house looked, how the honeysuckle smelled.

Slowly, she took off her jacket. Then her white blouse. She stepped out of the pumps, undid the button on her slacks. Pulled the zipper. Removed the pants.

Could anyone see her? She didn’t know, but she felt alone, and she wanted to be seen.

She slid down the expensive stockings and took them off. Her black briefs were last. Entirely naked, she pretended she could feel someone watching, someone taking her picture. She could almost hear the click of each frame.

She’d undressed in front of the wheat at home. Knowing nobody could see her. Standing with her window open, feeling the sweet breeze stir her hair.
Now she stood behind the glass—and she touched herself. One hand between her legs, the other stroking her breasts.

Was anyone watching?

She hoped so.

She was tired of being all by herself.

Across from her, the photographer snapped picture after picture. He’d never seen a more beautiful woman in his life. She was transcendent.

He wanted her.
He wanted to break her glass.

###

If you are looking for a longer read this weekend, please consider Gym Rat, one of my favorite filthy stories. The kindle contains the raw opening of a new novel I'm working on. Yes, I'm seriously juggling projects right now. Every time I get closer to finishing one, I find myself starting something new. I'm sure I'll reach the end of something at some point!

Your support is gratefully appreciated.

XXX,
Alison




August 27, 2015

"In the throws of passion..."



Wait. Let me start with a forward. A foreworde? Am I forarmed? Or fourarmed?

I've seen all of these typoes. (Ha.) I've made some myself. One of my friends sent me her favorite yesterday. She said she often reads passages in which the light "shown down on her golden hair."

I responded with the one I've seen: the throws of passion.

She emailed back: "The light shown down on the lovers in the throws of passion."

Go on, just throw that passion wherever you'd like. We'll sweep it up for you.

If you want to share your favorite typo of your own (one you've made or one you've tripped over), go on and do it.

And now... drumroll, please... your daily porn! (Did you miss yesterday's Daily Porn?)


She sat at a small round table in the busy café. Nobody paid her any attention. The college students at the booth behind her worried loudly about finals. The dark-eyed man at the table across texted his girlfriend.

Her cup was half-empty or half-full. Depending on whether you’re an optimist or a coffee drinker. She had a cloth-bound journal in front of her, a sharpened pencil between the pages.

Outside the café, the cars blurred together. Mostly high-end, SUVs, expensive. She’d walked to the restaurant from the garage where she lived. Curtains made of old silk scarves blocked out the light. She allowed herself one cup of coffee at this spot every day. It barely fit her tight budget.

But he worked here, the bartender with the bright blue eyes and the shock of gold hair. And when he handed her the forty cents of change each time, their fingers brushed, and a jolt of pure carnal electricity glimmered inside her. She always dropped the silver into the tip jar.

If he ever peeked over her shoulder while she was writing, he’d have seen…

I want him to take me to the back alley. I want him to force my palms against the wall, lift my skirt, yank down my nylons and panties. I need his cock in me, right then. Without preamble. Without forethought.

She was wet at the fantasy, wet from the words. She closed her book, slid the pencil behind her ear, and left the café.

Tomorrow.

###

I'm not sure if I will actually be able to pull off "Your Daily Porn" every day. But I'll try. 250 words is a sweet spot for me.

In other news, The Spanking House has received a 4-star review! Yay! I'm seriously delighted when people buy my indie collections. You have no idea how thrilled this makes me!

XXX,
Alison

August 26, 2015

Your Daily Porn

I can't remember if I've told this before, so mea culpa if I have—and hey, new story if I haven't! Years ago—and we're talking decades—when the Interwebs were first being stroked and petted, I had the idea to start a website called "Your Daily Porn."

No, really. www.yourdailyporn.com

Each day, I planned to post a different story or snippet or feature or interview. I wasn't tech savvy enough to pull this off. Sadly. (In school, I was thrust into a math class where we learned to write flowcharts for very early computer programs. I was so bad at this. The genius who was paired with me just hung her head at my inability to understand the most basic of concepts. If memory serves, I was the dumbest kid in the smart math classes. Luckily, I made up for it by being told to give up all hope of being a writer by my English professor. Ha! Take that, School!)

But back to Porn. I loved my idea then. And I still think about the concept from time to time. Which is probably where my big Friday reveal is coming from. I welcomed an unexpected idea over the weekend. I hope it works. And "it," in this case, is me. I hope *I* can make this work. We'll see!

While we're waiting (on me), here's a bit of porn for your day. 250 words on the motherfucking dot. Who knows? This "daily porn" thing might catch on...

You don't go there too often. Not because you're afraid of what will happen. But because you're afraid of what won't. The door opens into pure blackness. The type of dark that swims over you, holds you under, makes thinking difficult, breathing a challenge. You could blink for hours in a pathetic attempt to grow accustomed to the darkness. But that won't help. That won't save you. Nothing will save you here.

He's waiting to make his move. From experience, he knows exactly when to put out a hand, to touch your shoulder. And even though you knew he was going to be there, that doesn't prevent you from recoiling. The shiver that works through you is pure adrenaline. You can't remember a time when your heart beat this fast.

A man is waiting in the dark. You've entered his world. You swallow over your fear—there is nothing to be afraid of. You asked for this. You set this up. Everything that is going to happen will happen with your consent. His body on yours. His cock in your holes.

Yet there is a man in the dark, and you can't see him. He steps behind you, undresses you. You feel his large hands on your body. You feel his heat behind you. The wetness at your split is like the essence of your dreams.

He has found you out. He has discovered your core.

Inside, you're as dark as the room.

How he takes you lights you up.

XXX,
Alison


August 25, 2015

Are you ready to Chaucer?


So I tossed out the idea that we read Chaucer together. Why? Because I'm scared to do it alone! But how on earth do you schedule a book group for a handful of people across various time zones? And what if we're not all reading the same edition? (The one above was my mother's I think.)

Well, this is what I decided.

Every Tuesday, I'll post an update of where I am and what I think... and readers can weigh in with their impressions, as well. We might not all be talking at the same time—but we can tag back and forth and help each other out.

I actually have several versions floating around, so I may dip in and out and see which I like best. So start your engines. Rev your medieval minds. And get ready to Chaucer!

XXX,
Alison

P.S. The introduction on my edition is 57 pages long. The front page features an explanation of what a Viking Portable is. My favorite line: "Most 'Portables' are available both in durable cloth and in stiff paper covers." This reminds me of a vinyl record I have that features the promise: "This monophonic microgroove recording is playable on monophonic and stereo phonographs. It cannot become obsolete." I find that adorable.

August 24, 2015

Trollop with a Question #71


The idea for this query came from Gabriela, Clove and Cinnamon, which I read so many years ago, and which I re-discovered at a used bookstore this weekend. (Speaking of bookstores—yes, I know you're waiting for my Chaucer update! I promise to post my plan tomorrow. Insert evil cackle here.)

But this isn't a literary query. This one is for the chefs, the bakers, the culinary creative types:

What spice would you consider mandatory in your world? 

I'm looking for the one you'd take with you to your desert island. (Assuming salt and pepper are already there.)

I've asked a few friends this question, and I love that each one had a different response. Mine? Cayenne. I like things spicy—no double-entendre intended. (Or maybe a little intended.) I put hot sauce on everything, add the ground spice to most dishes. "More pepper please" is my mantra.

What else is going on?

Please visit Sommer Marsden to learn about her latest news.
Check out Riendo's Raw Photos.
See if you won Angell's writing prompt contest.
And follow Nancy for gorgeous wordplay.

XXX,
Alison

P.S. The infinity scarf in the picture is one I made this weekend. I'll give one away to a commenter this week. If you're interested in purchasing a sparkly scarf (seen here) drop a note to msalisontyler at yahoo dot com. The short ones (like neck cuffs) are $15. The long ones are $40. The shimmery sequined yarn is to die for.

August 20, 2015

Don't Quit Now!


This post could also be called "Getting Better All the Time." Or even "Don't Quit While You're Behind."

Lately, I've been mining through old files. Partly to recycle and partly to locate. It's a dig. Archaeological Erotica. (Maybe I'll discover a dinosaur!) I don't remember half of what I've found.

One thing I've realized is that I'm massively better than I was when I started. Not to pat myself on the back too hard, but although my style hasn't changed much, I believe I've elevated the quality. You know, grammatically. I see glitches and naive issues in some of my early pieces. I'm a little embarrassed occasionally by the nostalgia and slightly saccharine atmosphere of some of the work. I want to be hard edged. I want to walk a razor-fine tightrope.

What am I proud of? The need. The raw, hungry, desperate need in the words. I knew what I craved. I was aware of my desires. I fumbled sometimes in how to put those urges into phrases. But I tried. And I give myself a gold star. E for Effort.

So when people say writers should stop because there are too many of us, I am baffled. Had I stopped twenty-five years ago, I would have given up at my lowest. I don't care how many other people are writing around me. I only care about what I do at my dining room table. (Or corner booth at the bar.)

My goal? To move forward. Up that fucking ladder. Of success? No. I've never been in this for fame or fortune. (Thank god. What a sad revelation that would have been.) I've already described the landscape of my early writing days. My personal goal is simply to improve. With every word I write. Each character I welcome. I want to get better.

In fact, I want to be my own best.

Truth? I didn't see this rah-rah post coming at all. What I planned to write when I sat down was a piece called "Not Your Grandfather's Porn." Which will have to wait for another day.

XXX,
Alison

P.S. Want to make my week? Pour yourself a shot of Alison on the Rocks, my indie collection of bar-related sex stories. Readers have said: "The way Ms. Tyler tells all these bar stories is so perfect. I hope she serves another round very soon." And "Temperatures will be running hot after this one. Be sure to have something close by to cool down with."

August 19, 2015

Fucking like a Porn Star


Yesterday, I popped out of my hole and suddenly—two more weeks of summer! No, wait. That's Groundhogs and Winter. I'm not a Groundhog.

But I did pop out, and a woman stopped me on the street and asked me to sign a petition to increase the minimum wage. When I started working, I believe I made $3.35. And dinosaurs roamed the earth. I am all for raising the minimum wage.

The second petition was to require porn stars to wear condoms while shooting films.

I passed on signing this because I said I needed more information. The canvasser seemed shocked that I would feel that way.

I believed at first that the bill was to promote safe sex in the viewers. So that if you, say, wanted to fuck like a porn star, you'd reach for a condom. Except I read regarding a similar law in Los Angeles that companies simply remove the visual of the condom in the editing.

Okay, so this is where my strange brain takes us... If the point is to protect the porn stars, we should all acknowledge that porn sets are not the only locations where people are fucking at work. I've done this math before, but upwards of 10% of people have had sex at the office, while 54% of people have had sex with their coworkers.

(Quick aside. I also found out that people who have sex four or more times a week make more money. So there's that.)

I tried to figure out how many porn stars it takes to change a lightbulb. No, wait. How many porn stars live in California. I found a map that showed California was the big winner with 77. (Out of the 200 being researched.) Meanwhile, there are more than 15,000,000 civilian workers in California.

The porn star number was probably low. But if 10% of California workers are having sex on the job, that would equal 1,500,000 workers. Shouldn't the bill really be to require them to wear condoms?

As I said, I'm woefully unschooled on this. And happy to learn.

Oh, but I also thought that if condoms are required, isn't this perfect place for product placement? Condom and lube companies could market to every worker—if you're fucking on the job, and we know 10% of you are (wink, wink), make sure you use...

Speaking of product placement (and fucking at work), if you haven't bought Bent Over His Desk yet, please consider making this purchase. Your $4.49 supports a handful of indie authors who are seriously grateful.

XXX,
Alison




August 18, 2015

I'm a prize!


Nice people rock my world. The unbelievably awesome Angell Brooks is running a contest and offering Alison After Dark as the prize! What do you have to do to enter? Submit a writing prompt here. (Before Thursday!)

How cool is that?

In other news, I read that the New York Times wrote a piece about Amazon and that Amazon responded. What the first piece said and what the response was are unimportant to me. What I love about the story is that Amazon received basically a review—do you see where I'm going here?—and pushed back.

(I didn't read the NYT piece. I did read this.)

As writers, we're instructed not to respond to reviews. But sometimes things have felt so unfair to me that I've come a little unglued. Once, a reviewer responded to my response. He called the mail "Karma for Critics," and he said it took having his own work torn apart before he understood truly what I was talking about. I treasure his email.

There actually is precedence for responding to reviews. (In The New York Times Book Review writers are always telling their sides in the letters.)

I'm mostly over my need to respond or to put things right. But my guess is that in this world of Yelps and other online review sites we are only going to see more pushing back. People who had no problem taking apart others limb by limb may feel differently as we enter this era in which everyone and everything can be starred up or thumbs-downed.

I just wonder if most people will be as self-aware as the reviewer who wrote to me.

Last year, I saw a reviewer happily and viscerally demolish a book. When her own work was subsequently critiqued, she went ballistic.

As someone who has been on the receiving end of reviews for 25 years, I've got something of a head start. I liked what the Amazon employee said about The Golden Rule (in the article I linked to above). I think the best thing anyone can do is remember there is a human on the other end of the computer. If you're writing about someone, think about how you'd feel if someone said those words about you.

Honestly, it's that simple.

XXX,
Alison

August 17, 2015

Trollop with a Question #70


This is a query I've wanted to ask for a few weeks. Then numbers got in the way—how couldn't I have asked a sexual position query for #69? Now, finally, I'm ready!

We've all heard that the movie paled in comparison to the book. (Any movie. Any book.) So here is my question:

Is there a movie you've seen that you enjoyed more than the book it was based on? (On which it was based?)

I have a few ties. Or at least close calls. I adore both book and movie of High Fidelity and book and movie of The Snapper. But ultimately, although I am a serious fan of Roddy Doyle's, I think The Commitments (film) outshines the novel.

Now, you...

XXX,
Alison

P.S. While I have you thinking cinematically, check out my new glittery infinity scarves! I'm calling these ones "Hollywood" because of the sparkle and shine. I have one long one and one short, and I'm making them to sell based on requests. (I've given away many, and enough people have asked to buy one that I thought I'd take a shot.) Long one can wrap twice around your neck—and costs $40. Short one is more like a neck "cuff" and costs $15. So let me know if you're interested. (I'm at msalisontyler at yahoo dot com.)

August 14, 2015

Free Smut Friday


I missed posting about Figment this week, but here are some of the words on my computer. The book is moving forward. I know who everyone is and where everyone's going. Which is a relief, let me tell you. My new plan (as I know I've said) is to actually finish a slew of my novels-in-progress this year. One at a time. Knocking them down. 

My problem? Every time I move forward with one, I tend to start another one. So this week, I began Debriefed. Seriously. I told my brain to stop. I said, "Hey, hang on. I have to do Figment, then The Great Distraction, Girls Who Wear Glasses, Something Up Her Sleeve, My Husband Hates His Job... So I Fucked His Boss... Please. Let me catch my breath."

But apparently I'm not that good at listening to myself.

So for Free Smut Friday, here is a sliver of the uber-raw, absolutely uncooked Debriefed:


When my wife passed a bad check at the grocery store, I was surprised. She handles all of our house accounts, and she’s no slouch in the math department. Numbers are her friends. But that didn’t change the fact that the store manager called me up at work and asked me if I knew that Kelly had bounced a check.

I was sure there’d been an error. The manager sounded less sure. But I told him I’d come by after work with the cash and he agreed to wait.

Kelly didn’t answer her phone when I called. That was also strange. She didn’t answer my texts, either. I wasn’t worried, really. But I was curious. I took out cash from the ATM and brought it to the corner store. The manager and I are friendly, but not on a first-name basis. He accepted the money, gave me back the check, and then asked if I might have a word with him in his office.

Since he was doing me a favor, I agreed. We went back and sat down, and he pulled out a bottle of liquor and offered me a glass. This was a weird cap to a strange day, so I agreed. That’s when he said, “I have video footage of your wife.”

“Excuse me?”

“I thought you might want to see this.”

He brought me around to his side of the desk and started to play surveillance footage from one of the aisles in the store.

There was Kelly. No doubt about it. She was standing in the corner by the magazines, and she was touching herself. The manager watched intently as my pretty wife slid one hand into the pocket of her cut-offs. She hadn’t exposed herself, but she was definitely doing something naughty.

Of course, that could describe my wife’s whole personality. “Doing Something Naughty” could be Kelly’s middle name.

“What do you think?” the manager asked me.

“I think Kelly’s got some explaining to do,” I said. I looked at him. He was a buttoned-up type, blond hair cut short, no sign of any type of whiskers. Kelly’s type from tip to toe. 
“If you’d like to debrief her,” I added, “maybe that might help.”

“Debrief,” he repeated, as if liked the way the word sounded. I’d just bet he did.

“She’s got a whole drawer of briefs,” I said, and he looked at me, rattled clearly by what I was saying and how I kept giving him little tidbits of information.

“She likes boy shorts the best,” I said. “You might like pulling those down.”

“I could spank her,” the manager said.

“You could,” I agreed thoughtfully.

###

So yes, I have the start. But I have to finish. That's what I keep telling myself. Stop starting! Start finishing!

Wish me luck.

XXX,
Alison

P.S. If you're interested in reading something I managed to finish, please check out Alison's Cheating Heart. For $2.99, you win seven seductive short stories. Photo by Riendo, who is paid for every sale.

August 13, 2015

Yes, I'm Bi...


...a bi reader that is. (Well, I'd have to say, I'm the other "bi," too.) But I want to talk about books right now. I worship books. The ones you hold in your hand. The ones that you bought at a used bookstore. The ones that break open to your favorite place. Apparently, I also adore books with black-and-white photo covers, with a sub-genre of covers featuring men smoking. Who knew? I didn't until I was organizing a shelf.

I read books hard. Really hard. Poor Lone Pilgrim. This book broke into three different parts recently. Luckily, I have a back-up. Recently, a friend and I were discussing treasured books, and she asked me how many copies I need to own to feel comfortable lending one out. "Three," I responded without missing a beat.

Over the years, I've met several people who give books out as part of their personality. Remember the repairman who gave me a self-help book? It turned out that he'd given away more than 200 copies of that book and more than 300 copies of another title.

I'm that way with Wrecking Crew. Not to the triple digits, but I have given away umpteen copies of the baseball book.

A few months ago, a writer put down people who read electronically. She said print readers were more intellectual than Kindle readers. I'm not sure where she gleaned her information—but I'm doubtful.

Personally, I like nothing better than to hold a book in my hand and read somewhere in public. (Bars are good.) But I spend most of my time reading and editing on the computer. I read all day long. I think you can go both ways and see the benefits to each.

I will be sad if we reach a day when there are no more paper books. (I was sad when vinyl went away, too. But vinyl's back!)

At the moment, only a few of my indie titles are available in book form, as well. But I'm working on fixing that. For Figment, I want both for sure—an e-version, and a book you can hold in your hands. Crack the spine. Bend the pages.

How about you? E-reader? Paper-reader? Both?

XXX,
Alison

P.S. Here is my clever marketing attempt for today. (And you know me and marketing.) So what did I come up with? I thought I'd simply ask people to buy the book. Voila!

I would love to sell ten copies of Alison After Dark this week. Do you have an extra $2.99 under your couch? If so, you can make an indie author's day by purchasing a copy of this collection. For more information on the book, please check this post.

August 12, 2015

Rebel Rule Breaker: The Introduction



Rebel Rule Breaker
A Guide from a Social Media Failure

In 2006, I fell backwards into blogging. My publisher at the time, Black Lace, had suggested a group of BL authors work together on a group blog. I was invited to join by Nikki Magennis, and I worked with several creative, intelligent, and (sometimes) snarky women for nearly a year on (the now defunct) Lust Bites.

In order to be part of the group blog, I had to create my own account. Up until then, I’d shunned the online world. I find marketing terrifying.

Lust Bites was my trial-by-fire introduction to engaging with the public online. I believe I did everything wrong. I got my feelings hurt. I created a sock puppet to push back on an issue. I wrote a comment anonymously. I argued with reviewers who I felt were unfair. Name something you’re not supposed to do online. I did it.

And I did it with gusto.

After leaving Lust Bites, I focused on my own blog. Here I continued to do things incorrectly according to social media experts. When I was stressed, I published in bursts. I would actually update the blog multiple times a day.

In 2008 (maybe) I tried Facebook. In 09, I quit Facebook and Twitter. In my defense, this is what was happening, and I really couldn’t handle the online world.

My blog is an extension of my brain. Messy. Scrambled. Difficult to sort. Disorganized. Colorful. Plagued by insomnia.

I have:

• deleted posts
• used my tags to highlight songs I like

I haven’t:

• made it easy for people to … well, do anything. There is no rhyme. There is no reason. If I handed you a road map, the directions would be written in gibberish.

I actually used to beat myself up about this. But I look at my blog as a way for readers to discover a little bit more of me than they find in my books. I don’t use robots for anything. I don’t schedule because I never know what day it is.

My goal with this guide is to make other losers—I mean, people—who are insecure about social media feel better about themselves. I am writing this book for free, and I’ll be posting sections as I write them. I’m hoping to keep a running list of the book’s chapters in the sidebar.


Possibly. And I’m sure people will be happy to point out the errors in my ways. But that’s okay. I’ll simply write the critics into another chapter in the book!

XXX,
Alison

August 11, 2015

Dating in the Dark


I am—as I like to say—over the moon! Today is the release day for the September issue of Penthouse magazine. And guess what? I'm in it!

No, I'm not a pin-up girl. But I do have a short story in this issue's Bedtime Stories feature. My piece is called "Dating in the Dark." The illustrations are totally delicious, and I am honestly beyond thrilled with the whole shebang. Honored doesn't begin to describe my emotions. Sometimes words fail me. Which is a something of a work hazard if you're a writer!

I had other things to say today... for instance, I need to clarify what I am doing with my Chaucer Book Club. But today is hectic. I started early, I'm ending late, and the middle is going by in a blur! So, more soon. I promise.

XXX,
Alison

August 10, 2015

Trollop with a Question #69


I had something else to ask today. Something I will ask next week. I was all geared up. And then I saw the number on the top of this post. This is the sixty-ninth question I've asked on a Monday. How cool is that? So clearly I need to ask you this:


What is your favorite sexual position?

I went searching through my files and found:

I said before, I’m the sadist, the Top, the one in power. But it doesn’t always work like that, with one in charge and the other following, accepting. It doesn’t always have to be like that. Sometimes it’s more of a dance, a dance with two well-trained partners equally in charge. Equally responsible. That’s how it is with her, the way she turns herself and moves to take me into her embrace. The way she slides with the same grace she exposed on the slopes, slides in my arms and positions herself in a side-sixty-nine, bodies pressed against each other, but neither one of us on top.
—From "Strangers" in Blue Sky Sideways

 She didn’t care about her mussed hair, her smeared lipstick, the slick gloss of my juices on her chin. She was suddenly just a woman, a lover, a true human being. And as she bowed to the altar of my body, I was suddenly the same, grabbing her and moving her into a sixty-nine, so that I could bestow the same gifts to her own wet pussy with my ravenous mouth. She tasted sweet, a candy-dream treat.
—From "Ducks to Swans" by Mia Underwood in Naughty Fairy Tales from A to Z

I licked slowly at first, tasting myself, then hit the rhythm that Jack liked best. He trailed his fingertips along my spine, traced every one of my tattoos, before pulling me on top of him into a sixty-nine. Jack seemed to want to take things easy on me. I’d supposed he would give me another spanking back here in the privacy of the bedroom, but he made no move to get out any paddles or floggers, not even to reach for his belt. And soon I was lost in the pleasure of his tongue on me and my own private mission to make him come.
I also discovered multiple posts dedicated to my short-story collection called 69, which actually contains 70 stories, because... bonus!

There is sadly no print edition of 69, but the e-book sells for $4.99 on Kindle, which means point 0 seven cents a story. No, really. (What is it with me and math these days?)

I'm so proud of this smutty little collection. Here is a list of the authors. It would be awesome if you bought a copy. (And if you do, please let me know what you think!) Your support is extremely appreciated!

XXX,
Alison








August 09, 2015

Even in Toledo

I'm kidding. Of course, you can. You can always sit with us. And by "us," I mean "me." (You know, the royal "us." Or is that "we"?)

When I first started writing erotica, you actually could pull up a chair to the smutty table and serve yourself. There *was* something of a community. I circled with certain writers, and I actually met quite a few of the publishers and editors I worked with. In person. Over alcohol in some occasions, coffee on others.

On Lust Bites, I connected with a slew of Black Lace writers. I think we were the first—or at least one of the first—erotic group blogs on the 'net. (I just checked, and the blog has been closed except for invited readers. But the site was an interesting experiment while it lasted.)

There honestly was a time when you could know personally—or at least know *of*—almost all the writers in the industry. Imagine that.

Last fall, while I was sinking in publishing quicksand, I came up with a concept I called Power On—in which writers could help each other. Honestly, I think I'd had my shades on for so long, I hadn't realized the new landscape.

Recently, with my obsessive math-i-ness, I discovered there are almost half a million items tagged "erotica" on Amazon.

That's not a community. That's Toledo.

I mean, Toledo has a population of close to 500,000. And if you were going to host a dinner party, you'd have to get a really big fucking table.

But here's the thing... the Interwebs allow readers to choose which table they want to sit at. (At which table they want to sit?) So if you're hungry for a dinosaur romance, you can find that. If you're craving a mail-order billionaire, you can find that, too.

So maybe there isn't *a* community. But there are communities. Little fetish-y neighborhoods of assorted erotic endeavors. I like that. It fits into my Motel Erotica concept.

I'll bet there's even one in Toledo!

XXX,
Alison