Celebrate Romance!

Valentine’s Day is coming soon, and to celebrate I’m offering a lovely selection of erotic-romantic stories for your FREE reading enjoyment! These giveaways only last for a couple of days, so get in there now before they’re done. Because everyone knows, the best way to celebrate romance is with lots of steamy hot erotica. To be enjoyed alone or en couple. ūüėČ

Here’s what you can get:

An Amazon’s Equal – free on¬†February 13th!

amazonequal3DcoerPyrena, an Amazonian warrior, lives in an idyllic society. All sisters, the Amazons share everything: work, meals, homes… and captive men. The men they keep are for pleasure; love is unknown among these fierce women. For Pyrena, things become more complicated after she captures a handsome Greek warrior, Astrastos. As she comes to know him, she begins to realize that her world¬†is not so perfect, after all.

Flowers for the Ancients – free through Feb. 14th!

flowers-working-coverThis collection of erotic stories features women across the ancient world, from Africa, through the Middle East, to Asia. Their stories are as diverse as the heroines. They are queens and peasants; virgins and mothers; loveless and adored. Some of their names are familiar. Others are unknown. All of them lived, and lusted, and loved. Just like us.

 

lemonscoverLemons In Their Slippers: an erotic romance retelling of ‘The Twelve Dancing Princesses’– free through the 14th!

If you’re in the mood for some erotically imagined fairy tales, this one written just for you! Why did those princesses really wear out their dancing shoes?¬†(It should come as no surprise that more than the shoes got some action every night!) Romantic and sexy, this remains one of my fuzzy-good-feelings favorites.

And finally, ALL the ‘Ancients’ stories are FREE on the 14th only! The stories (also to be found all together, in Flowers for the Ancients) are: Sheba’s Lovely Maidens, ¬† Queen of Beauty, ¬† Buktu’s Well, ¬†¬†The Girl With The Golden Eye, ¬† A Bride for Seven Brothers, and ¬† How The Lotus Blossoms.

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The book I wish I’d read in college

So I graduated from college a rather long time ago, but time is relative, and I still remember well how I looked, felt, and reacted back then. Without giving away too much of my not-so-sordid history, suffice it to say that in college I was on a mission to get a good education in every way: academically, of course, but also socially in doing everything (and everyone) I wanted to do. Like most college girls, this involved a lot of romantic and sexual disappointments. (Let’s just say that, in my opinion, men are like red wine, not white; you want to enjoy them aged.) Anyway, those many years ago I decided to treat myself after each of the oh-so-common breakups. And my treat was romance novels.

Now, when I read a romance novel, I’m looking for romance, of course. But mostly I’m in the market for sex. At the time, I didn’t know about erotica, or how to find it – oh, poor innocent! – so I was pretty much stuck with the paperback shelf at Barnes & Noble. (Yes, as I said, this was quite some time ago.) Due to the nature of college relationships, I ended up reading quite a few romance novels. But the vast majority of them left me unsatisfied. My complaints:

  1. Not enough sex. Pretty straightforward.
  2. Most of the time, it involved a virginal girl who is gradually subdued by a much more experienced man. Not a bad thing at all, except when it happens again, and again, and again, to the point of the predictable.

Being an even more ardent feminist in college than I am now (and I am still), this infuriated me. Why, I thought, are there no romance novel where the more experienced woman shows the man a thing or two? Why does the virginal girl always get to have all the fun? And why aren’t there more sex scenes?!¬†(In response to that frustration, I started writing erotica. And I still do, so don’t ever let anybody tell you that I don’t use any of what I learned in college! Worth every penny.)

All this to say, after my disappointments with romantic literature as a young woman, I began to write my own. I wanted a story that had the elements of a romance novel, but with a strong and sexually experience heroine, and a story line that, while developing a romance, mostly revolves around sex. I was also something of a fantasy geek at the time, which helped me build a fantastic setting: a historical fantasy universe where the mythical Amazons of ancient Greece did, in fact, exist. The society they built would naturally be centered on women, but how would they reproduce? How would they manage things? How would they defend their lifestyle? And what about love? All these questions were the basis of An Amazon’s Equal.

I wrote it, began to hate it, abandoned it, came back to it years later, finished it, started to like it again, re-read and changed it, and finally decided it was good. You know, the usual¬†writer’s process. But I struggled to find a place for it. It’s not strictly erotica, being a full-length novel. It’s not the typical romance novel, either (Harlequin wouldn’t touch this with a ten-foot pole!). Also, as it was born of the feelings and desires of my college years, it is not the kind of book that would necessarily attract an older audience. So, what is it? I pondered and put the book on ice while I did some more research. Then, by chance, I stumbled across it: New Adult!

New Adult is a fairly new genre focusing on protagonists between the ages of 18-25-ish. The events and situations are meant to appeal to readers in this age bracket, as well; think about yourself in college, and what kinds of books attracted you then. (I’m imaging myself at the 24-hour cafe, drinking far too many chai tea lattes while voraciously finishing the latest book…) Another way to think about it is as Young Adult, but now of legal drinking age. Yes, New Adult Romance is a thing, and this, I discovered to my delight, is where my book belongs.

Another long story to explain my decisions and, I hope, my writing choices for this novel. Although I’m all grown up now (more or less), it’s fun to relive those college days. If you’re in the mood for a sexy stroll down memory lane – or if you’re still in college and in the mood for a fantasy romance that promises lots more than ye olde grocery store bookshelf – I invite you to check it out.

Girls with swords and the guys who love them: good at any age!

An Amazon’s Equal

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New Adult AND Erotica? Well, I tried it anyway!

So for those of you who don’t already know, I recently released my first full-length novel, An Amazon’s Equal. As is always the case with novels, I spent a long time putting it all together, writing it, editing it, rereading and reediting it, and all the while I was thinking to myself: What IS this?!

My heroine, Pyrena, is a young Amazon warrior confronting her society’s view of men and love, in the face of her growing feelings for the handsome and gentle Greek boy she captured. The theme is really that of a young person struggling against injustice and discovering her place in the world. Also, sex – of course, since that’s what I like to write about! All that said, it’s not really a traditional fantasy romance novel (definitely NOT a virginal heroine here!), but nor is it strictly erotica. I found myself in a pickle when trying to decide what to call it.

That’s when I learned about New Adult. The working definition for this type of literature is still developing (though I think the folks at NA Alley got it pretty good here!), but essentially it is literature dealing with the themes that young people confront when they are just taking their first big steps into adult life. Generally this is around ages 18 through 26, though that too can vary. In any case, as soon as I heard about NA, I knew that’s what I had written. In fact, I began work on An Amazon’s Equal when I was a very “new adult” myself! Almost ten years after I began it, way back in my freshman dorm room in college, it’s finally published, and finally in the category it belongs: New Adult Erotica.

What do you think? Did I succeed? Is erotica even a genre that belongs in NA? I don’t know, but I sure tried it!

Curious? You can buy An Amazon’s Equal on Amazon, in print of Kindle edition. I would love to know what you readers think of my attempt at a New Adult novel. At the very least, I can guarantee plenty of fun erotic bits!