Erotica Author * Editor
My Relationship With Books
In fact, it is about the only one fit for a man.
For my own part, there is no seducing me from the path."
~ Edgar Allan Poe (1849)
When I was little towheaded three-year-old I began pre-primer, which is a kind of pre-kindergarten class that is not a play school, but a learning experience. Usually only four-year-olds are admitted, but I was already able to both read and write by age three. I have recollections of my babyhood, of being in a high chair; of a violent fight between my father and mother where my jar of baby food was thrown and splattered in green globs against the kitchen wall; of crawling over a hot floor furnace grate; of lifting myself bravely in the dark night over my crib rail and dropping into a seeming abyss in order to reach a carpeted floor, then crawling into my parent's warm bed. Those are the only memories I have before I began to read sometime between the toddler ages of late two and three years.
Books have been my lifelong companions, and I have reverently respected their authors. I did not choose to learn to write and to study writing professionally until I was in my early thirties. I thank my friend, Bronwen, for the encouragement to do so. I began formal study in a New Orleans-based short story fiction workshop setting at her suggestion.
Later some members of the workshop formed a writer's support group with several local writers and published authors. I eventually split from the group when I realized that the erotica genre could not be nurtured by writers who were not sex-positive, had little or no understanding of the SM community or principles, and had little or no exposure to writing in the genre. The last piece I wrote and presented to the group was poorly rated, yet I knew I had written something special.
I garnered the courage to send this unloved story, Quarter Past Four, as my very first submission to Black Sheets editor, Bill Brent, in 1997 who accepted my work for publication in 1998. He liked the piece so much, he then sent it to Marti Hohmann of the now defunct and once acclaimed Masquerade Press who accepted it for Best of the Underground an anthology of "cutting-edge underground erotica." Unfortunately, the book never made it to press, as Masquerade folded within months. I was heartbroken, but I didn't give up.
I later published "Quarter Past Four" in Greg Wharton's first issue of suspect thoughts: a journal of subversive writing, and the story will be included in my forthcoming collection from Circlet Press, Sex Noir: Stories of Sex, Death and Loss. Four editors just can't be wrong. I knew I had something special, regardless of my rejection within the New Orleans writer's support group.
Other short works that were written during my writer's group years are to be published in early 2002 in a psychology textbook for graduate studies by Haworth Press entitled The Use of Personal Narratives in the Helping Professions: A Teaching Casebook. It seems even my non-erotic work written during my learning years had literary merit. I'm so very glad I didn't give up. Reading kept me alive, and kept up my drive to be published and to continue writing. I now have over a hundred short stories, poems, essays, columns and articles published, and I haven't stopped writing.
These are some of the authors who also inspired me to
write, and who inspire me to keep reading and writing. More authors, links
and commentary will be added as I develop this page. Don't be afraid to
play with the links; they'll each open into another browser page. There
is a world of writing out there to explore!
Literary Poets & Authors
William S. Burroughs
"Razors pain you; Rivers are damp;Patti Smith
"I don't consider writing a quiet, closet act.William Shakespeare
As the father of the erotic tragedy, I can't appreciate another writer better. You can follow the link to read his complete works online. There's a good reason his works are still being studied, read and performed. My favorites are Romeo & Juliet, Hamlet and TitusAndronicus, the latter of which makes our modern day Hannibal look like a silent little lamb.
Roald Dahl Yes, this is the same author who is famous for writing children's books. But he also wrote strange and horrific, disturbing little stories for adults that always seemed to deal with schemes gone awry. A master! An absolute idol of mine. While other children were being raised on his classic, James & The Giant Peach (which I've never read-- shame on me!) I was up watching late night episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents which featured many Roald Dahl screenplays derived from his short fiction.
Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Mythology
Robert A. Heinlein
Shirley Jackson found and uncovered the evil in ordinary things. Her subtle style was masterful. She skillfully portrayed madness, and used her grasp of human psychology to create believable and insidious plots and characters-- not to mention adding a strong balance of humor and suspense. I find her brilliant; I've read all her works. I was almost exactly seven months old the day Shirley Jackson died of heart failure August 8, 1965.
Ursula K. Le Guin
C. S. Lewis
H. P. Lovecraft
Erotica & Sex Authors
Authors Who Make Me Try Harder
There are also many authors whose poorly crafted best-selling works, having prominence in the public eye, inspired me to begin writing because I truly thought I could do better. I'm not sure if I've managed to prove this yet, but at least I am satisfied that I work hard to be the best writer I can be, and I'll never stop learning the craft as long as I keep trying. I won't mention these unloved authors by name at the risk of being in poor taste. Sometimes I wonder exactly how people become "famous" and lauded after producing frankly bad writing. Having a minor in marketing helps me to understand how some of this process works.
Even if I never become a household name, I pray one day I'll at least become widely respected for my efforts. I also hope to cross genres and to work strongly in the literary fiction market and in the fantasy and horror genres, all combined with an unabashed exploration of the sexual. I don't think I'll ever stray far from sex writing. I do so hope you enjoy my work. If you do, please email me to offer encouragement. Writing is a lonesome job. It's great to hear from anyone appreciative.
Unveiling Venus | Suddenly Sexy