Wednesday, 11 December 2013

A Billion Wicked Thoughts is one of my favorite books about sexuality. The authors used an innovative, totally bottom-up method to develop the insights they report in it. They analyzed the content of thousands and thousands of internet searches to find out what people (mostly men) are looking for when they look for sexual content online. The authors have come up with some new interpretations of their data since the book was published, and now they're creating a series of videos to delve further into these ideas.
Here's one of their new videos, a fascinating look at men's erotic interest in women of various ages.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

A writer I really admire, Maggie McNeill of The Honest Courtesan, has the lead article on Cato Unbound this month. She's advocating legalization of prostitution. Great stuff, extremely articulate and well-researched.

Monday, 30 September 2013

new story: dissolve

I've got a new story appearing on the Erotica Readers and Writers Association website. It's called 'Dissolve.' All the ERWA stories are Halloween-themed this month, so they're supposed to be dark, supernatural or scary. I wrote this one specifically for the theme. I don't know whether it will frighten anyone else, but it sure scared me. I was working on it at night, alone in my bedroom, heard a noise somewhere out in the house. Shit. Do I go and investigate or just sit here frozen in sweaty-palmed terror? Note to self: don't write any more scary stories, but if you do, make sure you do it when someone else is home.

Also, I ran across this old article about a marriage enrichment retreat on Salon. It didn't turn out exactly like the marriage enrichment retreat in 'Mesmerized,' but there were some striking similarities.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

shameless behavior release party

Shameless Behavior: Brazen Stories of Overcoming Shame is out at last! It came out a couple of days earlier than I expected, actually.

I celebrated by downloading it and spending the day reading the whole thing. My favorite stories in it are 'Tamar,' 'Twin Scars' and 'Wet.' 'Tamar,' by Daniel Burnell, has a unique voice and lovely, transcendent imagery. 'Twin Scars,' by Axa Lee, perfectly captures the effect on a woman's sexuality of pregnancy, childbirth, and loss. 'Wet,' by Kyoko Church, confronts the pain suffered by a woman when a lover is disgusted by her body, and the confusion, hesitation, and ultimate healing when a new lover is aroused by the same (supposed) flaw. There are lots of other good stories in there. It's definitely worth the wait.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

At last we have a release date for Shameless Behavior. September 30! That's less than a week away, and I can't wait. Excerpts from the stories are being published on the Go Deeper Press blog, so if you want previews, you should go check it out.

Also on September 30, my stories 'A Wanted Man' and 'Changement' will disappear from the Erotica Readers and Writers website. 'A Wanted Man' is the best story I've ever written. I'll be sad when it disappears from the web, and I hope it finds a new home someday. (Yes, I know that writers are supposed to be the worst judges of their own work, but I really poured my heart into that one.)

Friday, 13 September 2013

the 'house MILF' debacle

Someone claiming to be a group of male University of Vermont students posted an ad to Craigslist seeking a "HouseMILF."

We are a house of 10 men who all are seniors at UVM and are looking for an attractive older woman to come and cook for us every few days. In exchange she gets her pick of the men of the house to have.

Requirements aren't lengthy; be a woman older than 25 who can cook and would like to enjoy some hot sex with a number of fit 20 somethings. Hopefully you can come by every week for a meal and some play time. Obviously we can work to accommodate your schedule. ;)

We are located in Burlington, are a fun and clean group of guys, and are all 21+.

Pretty funny, right? Except that someone was offended enough to call the police, who investigated the ad as "possible solicitation." The police weren't able to find out who posted the ad, but they did determine that it was NOT a crime. Yes, justice prevailed, and the police aren't going to need to start bringing prostitution charges against every woman who has sex with a guy who buys her dinner.

Check out this response to the incident by Laurie Essig, a professor of gender studies.

I'd like to analyse a few choice comments from her post.

Essig: "Needless to say, they didn't get a lot of attention from the MILFs in Burlington …"

How, exactly, does Essig know whether or not the young men got many responses to their ad? As I noted above, the police weren't able to determine who posted the ad, because Craigslist doesn't release posters' identities. Ah, I get it. She wants to believe that no women would be interested in the young men's offer. Hilariously, however, several older women commented on Essig's post to say they found the idea quite appealing.

Essig: "I'm not trying to make light of the symbolic violence contained in the fraternity brothers' ad. All men who have mothers should know better than to talk about MILFs. And no men should imagine that women are here on earth to fulfill their needs, whether it's in the kitchen or in the bedroom."

Symbolic violence? How, exactly, was Essig able to extrapolate symbolic violence from an offer of consensual sex? Oh, I know. It's because the person(s) who posted the ad are (allegedly) men. In the minds of Essig's brand of feminism, male sexuality is violent by definition.

"These young men have probably been consuming MILF porn, with its images of somewhat older women who seem to take great pleasure in servicing the needs of men. This porn is fantasy and surely everyone but these young men understands that, but it is fantasy in the service of patriarchy."

Now this statement is really interesting. Clearly, Essig's assumption is that any woman having sex with a man is 'servicing' him. Somehow she missed the fact that the young men are offering sex in exchange for food.

Would Essig have had so much trouble understanding the ad if it had been posted by college women? Here's the ad again, identical except that the pronouns have been reversed.

We are a house of 10 women who all are seniors at UVM and are looking for an attractive older man to come and cook for us every few days. In exchange he gets his pick of the women of the house to have.

Requirements aren't lengthy; be a man older than 25 who can cook and would like to enjoy some hot sex with a number of fit 20 somethings. Hopefully you can come by every week for a meal and some play time. Obviously we can work to accommodate your schedule. ;)

We are located in Burlington, are a fun and clean group of girls, and are all 21+.

Would Essig have found any 'symbolic violence' in this ad? My guess is that she would have, and she would have thought the victims were the poor little college women, who had been exposed to so much objectification that they were willing to sexually degrade themselves in exchange for a hot meal. Double standard, much?

It's all pretty depressing. But check out some of the comments on Essig's post.

"forgive the menopausal harmones, wouldn't mind taking those boys up on their offer, if only for a few evenings. Young and hard, wow...."

"Everybody buys sex husbands, wives, boyfriends, girlfriends SINCE THE DAWN OF TIME. It is the human condition. If these beautiful young men would like some home cooked gravy, spaghetti and meatballs for a long hard one, well with some wine it sounds like an interesting evening. Maybe bring some lube so we can keep things comfortable, I don't see the problem."

"And another thing: not all older women are SHOCKED by the idea of being desired by college students. We're not all out for love and marriage and being socially acceptable. It's pretty patronising to assume that any woman who would take this offer up is a victim. I'm getting tired of this idea that women are supposed to be the moral gatekeepers to ward off sex-crazed men."

That's right, Essig! As distasteful as you may find it, some older women enjoy having sex with men. Now that they've been cleared by the police, I hope those young men have found a nice house MILF and they're enjoying some home-cooking and fun.

Saturday, 31 August 2013

new stories

I have two new stories up in the Erotica Readers and Writers Gallery

A Wanted Man is a futuristic erotic story about hoarding, rock n roll, totalitarian government, and groupies. 

Changement is about a girl who wants to be a topless dancer and her affair with the 'sound guy' at the club, who is a woman. 

They'll only be up for the month of September, so if you want to read them, now's the time.

Sunday, 25 August 2013

don't look at me, you pervert

I've written before about certain heterosexual women's obsession with the male gaze. In this view, being looked at as sexually desirable by a man (objectified) is experienced as degrading, dehumanizing and defiling. 

And yet, as discussed in this article, being seen as irresistibly desirable is, for the typical woman, the most powerful sexual turn-on of all. 

How can these two seemingly contradictory facts be reconciled? I used to think that it was simply a matter of women lying. Either they were trying to keep men off balance with double-speak ("Don't my breasts look luscious in this black lace push-up bra? . . . Don't look at me, you objectifying pervert!"). Or else they were lying to themselves out of shame ("Isn't it horrible? That man found me attractive. Sexist pig! Now, why are my panties damp?")

The obvious (to me) truth was that women love being desired by particular men (the ones they find attractive) and hate being desired by men to whom they're not attracted.

And then, last night, it hit me. To many women, being desired is so powerful that they actually experience it as a sexual act. This is why, just like any other sexual act, it's luscious when done by someone to whom we're attracted, but can evoke powerful disgust when done by someone to whom we're not. Just like I might love having my earlobes licked, but I'd feel defiled if Howie Mandel did it.

Of course, my new insight comes no closer to solving the bind that women have put ourselves into. We've told men that we hate being looked at with desire, so the good guys don't look at us with desire (or at least they try to pretend not to). And yet being looked at with desire is what many of us most crave sexually. 

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

flash fiction: elusive little o

"Have you ever had a vaginal orgasm?"

"Penis only? No hands, no toys?" She took a drag from her cigarette, blew the smoke out into the moonlight. "Once, girlfriend. A long time ago."

Her friend raised a beer to her lips. She set the glass back down on the arm of her lawn chair. "What happened?"

"I was dating a guy who was awful in bed. Don't laugh. I mean, he was the worst. He'd get hard, shove it in, pump away for half a minute. Done. No foreplay, no afterplay. After a while, I gave up even trying to get turned on."

"Why'd you keep seeing him?"

"He was nice, I guess. Anyway, we were hanging out on a Saturday. Every couple of hours he'd want to screw again."


"Yeah, we were only twenty. The third time that morning, I was waiting for him to finish, just letting my mind wander when, Bam! I had an orgasm. Out of nowhere."


"It was just a little one, but still. He had no idea. I thought about telling him, but it would have been too awkward." She smoked and listened to the cicadas. "Have you ever?"

"Nope. Never have."

Friday, 16 August 2013

I was interviewed by Go Deeper Press

I was planning to post more about vaginal vs. clitoral orgasms, but that will have to wait because something much more exciting happened. I was interviewed for the Go Deeper Press blog!

I love Go Deeper Press. They're putting out some really hot, unique, sometimes funny, sometimes heart-wrenching erotica, AND they accepted one of my stories for an upcoming anthology, Shameless Behavior: Brazen Stories of Overcoming Shame.

My story, Mesmerized, is about a woman who doesn't even know she's suffering from shame. She's too busy feeling self-righteous and shaming and trying control other people. Here's an excerpt:

"Bobbi had a lot to do before the marriage enrichment retreat that weekend. She had volunteered to bring food for Saturday’s lunch, so she made a list and drove to the supermarket.
In the meat section, a girl bent over the freezers. She couldn’t have been more than 19 or 20 years old. Her straightened, blonde hair swung down and obscured her face, and her short skirt rode up in the back, all the way to the tops of her tanned, muscular thighs. Her platform sandals made the skirt look even shorter.
“Excuse me,” Bobbi said.
The girl stood up. Her white shirt was transparent, revealing a lacy, magenta bra underneath.
“You don’t have to dress like this,” Bobbi said. “You think the boys like it, but it makes you look like trash.”
The girl turned red. She opened her mouth, but nothing came out.
Bobbi continued, “When you go to the grocery store, you should wear a bra with some padding in it. It’s cold in here. Remember, modest is hottest.”
“Shut the fuck up, bitch!” The girl turned and clomped away.

Bobbi didn’t allow herself to be upset by the girl’s vulgarity. She must not have a mother who cares enough to teach her how to dress, she thought. Young people want discipline. They push the limits, but they’re only trying to get attention. Someday, she hoped the girl would come to her senses and be grateful that Bobbi had cared enough to counsel her."

Yep, the cycle of shame. If you can pass it along to someone else, you don't have to feel it.

Can someone like that ever recover? What would it take for Bobbi to accept other people's sexuality, and accept her own desires and fantasies as well? That's what Mesmerized is about.

your orgasms are wrong, part 2

As promised, I'm going to summarize Stuart Brody's research on female orgasm. It's important to note that he refers to any orgasm that occurs during penis-in-vagina sex WITHOUT touching the clitoris with the fingers or a toy a vaginal orgasm. And he refers to any orgasm that includes touching the clitoris with hands or a toy a clitoral orgasm. However, as I explained in my last post, these acts do not determine whether or not the orgasm was triggered by the head of the clitoris (e. g., many women orgasm during PIV sex by rubbing the head of the clitoris against their partner's body.)

To avoid perpetuating his error, I'm going to refer to the types of orgasms he studies as PIV-only orgasms versus direct-stimulation orgasms. The terminology still isn't perfect, but bear with me.
Here are his findings:

You can probably guess what Brody's take home message from all this is: He believes that PIV-only orgasms are "better."

I'd like to suggest an alternative interpretation. What I'm getting from this data is that PIV-only orgasms are MUCH more difficult to achieve than direct-stimulation orgasms. If you're a woman, and you have anxiety, or psychological problems, or a smallish bump in the middle of your upper lip, or low sensitivity to touch, or a problem with your spine or pelvis that restricts your gait, then you may not be able to have orgasms from PIV sex alone. If intercourse with your partner doesn't last very long, or if you're not very happy with your life, you may not be able to orgasm from PIV sex alone. Or, at least, you may not be able to do it very often.
But wait, there's good news too. None of these issues are likely to prevent you from having orgasms, as long as you use direct-stimulation of the clitoral head!

Let's go back, for a moment, to the thought experiment I proposed in the last post. It was to see how many men could have the equivalent of a vaginal orgasm. This would mean the man would have to orgasm from stimulation of only the penile shaft, no touching the head of the penis allowed.

What would happen if we tested men on the variables I listed above? I'll be we'd find almost exactly the same thing as with women: Men who are anxious, or have low sensitivity to touch, or problems with their spine that affect their gait, would be less likely to have shaft-only orgasms. And if we did find this, what would it mean? Would it mean that shaft-only orgasms are superior, and are the best and only kind of orgasms for men to have? You can see how ridiculous this logic is, can you not? But again, men would never put up with being told that their orgasms are 'wrong.' 

Monday, 12 August 2013

your orgasms are all wrong, part 1

You know what's been pissing me off lately? The need to dictate how women should have orgasms. Specifically, I'm talking about the controversy over clitoral vs. vaginal orgasms.

For years, Stuart Brody has been doing research, purporting to show that vaginal orgasms are superior to clitoral orgasms. But, goddamn it, he can't even get his terminology right. He defines a vaginal orgasm as one that occurs during penis-in-vagina sex, without simultaneously 'masturbating' the clitoris. The problem is, this definition tells us nothing about whether the orgasm was triggered through clitoral stimulation or vaginal stimulation.

Here's how I know. A male friend told me about an ex-girlfriend who was amazing in bed, because she could have 'vaginal' orgasms. Of course, I wanted to know her secret. He said she had to be on top, and she would grind her clit against his pubic bone until she got off. How was this a vaginal orgasm? It wasn't. It was a penis-in-vagina orgasm, it was a NO HANDS orgasm, but it was obviously clitoral in origin. A true vaginal orgasm is not simply one that occurs during PIV sex. It needs to be triggered by something other than the clitoris.

Let's look at some female anatomy. What we call the clitoris is really just the head of the clitoris. Most of the clitoris is internal to the woman's body. The clitoris develops out of the same fetal tissue that forms the penis in males. The head of the clitoris is analogous to the head of the penis. The tissue that, in males, develops into the shaft of the penis, in females, develops into the shaft and legs of the clitoris. The clitoral shaft is inside the woman's body, and extends back from the head of the clitoris, splitting into two legs on either side of the vaginal opening.

When a woman has a  vaginal orgasm, meaning an orgasm that isn't triggered by stimulation of the head of the clitoris, it is actually triggered by stimulation of the root of the clitoris (which comes close to the front wall of the vagina) or stimulation of the legs of the clitoris (on either side of the vaginal opening). That's right, a vaginal orgasm is still brought on by parts of the clitoris.

Let's do a thought experiment (even better, if you are a man or if you have a man handy, you could try this experiment in real life). Can a man have an orgasm through stimulation of only the shaft of the penis, with no touching of the head of the penis? This would be equivalent to a vaginal orgasm.
My guess is that, yes, many men could have orgasms by stimulating only the penile shaft. In fact, I would venture to hypothesize that the percentage of men who could have orgasms in this way would be almost identical to the percentage of women who have vaginal orgasms! That is, about 25% of women have never had a vaginal orgasm, another 75% occasionally or sometimes have one, and 25% almost always have one.
So why don't we have any real data about men and their ability to have penile-shaft-only orgasms? Because men don't stand for this kind of crap, that's why! If anyone is telling men that their orgasms are 'wrong,' men aren't listening.

Next post, I'll summarize Brody's research on vaginal orgasms. It's actually quite interesting, even though the conclusions I would draw from his data are diametrically opposed to the conclusions he draws.  

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Really fun erotica

I just finished reading Huddle, a new, super-fun, sexy erotic anthology. All five of the stories in it were great, but my favorite is Lucky Mascot, by Tamsin Flowers. It has a refreshing exuberance and style. Several times while I was reading it, I had to laugh out loud, not even out of humor, but because of the sheer delight in its originality and joyful spirit.

I have a couple of new pieces up too, on the Erotica Readers and Writer's Website. The Critics, is a super-short that pretends to be instructions for doing a strip-tease, but is really about writing, especially writers who critique other writers' work.

Friday, 5 July 2013

Flash fiction

A new super-short story of mine, The Wedding Night, is up on the Erotica Readers and Writers Association website. This one's about impotence.

It was inspired by reading responses to the question, Impotency: How do you handle it? Some men told of women's reactions that were insensitive, even hateful. I was shocked.

Why so cruel, ladies? If you're open to it, the times when sex goes 'wrong' can be the best times of all.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013


My story "Mesmerized" has been accepted for an anthology called Shameless Behavior: Erotic Stories of Overcoming Shame. It's being published by Go Deeper Press in August. Check out the enticing cover . . .

I've read one anthology from these folks, called As the Bishop Said to the Actress. The stories in it are great--clever, sexy, original.

The problem? I need to send them a headshot and I hate having my picture taken.

Monday, 24 June 2013

At the Pirate's Booty

One of my erotic short stories got published in an anthology called Valentine's Day. It's available from Smashwords.

My story is called "At the Pirate's Booty," and it's about a husband and wife fulfilling each others' fantasies. The book has a lot of great stories in it, all different. Check it out.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

This month, the Erotica Readers and Writers Association published a super-short story that I wrote. It's what they call a "flasher," meaning 200 words or less. It's called The Kindness of Strangers. You can find it here.