Monday, December 30, 2013

Wild, Wild, WILD Year for Classes!

(from M.Christian's Classes And Appearances)

2014 promises to be quite the year for me and teaching: just check out this amazing list of events and such I have already booked for next year!

More info coming very soon - plus a very special announcement - but wanted to share what I have so far so folks can start to put them on their calendars.

#

January 16th, 2014: Teaching Creative Sexuality For Good Vibrations, Pol Street

January 23rd, 2014: Teaching
Impact Play: Beyond Floggers And Canes for SF Citadel

January 27th, 2014: Leading Polyamory Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

February 20th, 2014:
Teaching Basic Bondage: Tie Me Up On A Budget for Feelmore510

February 24th, 2014: Leading Relationships And The Scene: A Discussion/Support Group
for SF Citadel

March 13th, 2014: Teaching How To Write And Sell Erotica
for Feelmore510

March 18th, 2014: Teaching Magic Words: Using Erotic Writing To Explore Your Hidden Sexuality And Spirituality for SF Citadel

March 24th, 2014:
Leading Polyamory Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

April 28th, 2014:
Leading Relationships And The Scene: A Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

April 29th, 2014: Teaching Polyamory: How To Love Many And Well
for SF Citadel

May 29th, 2014: Leading Polyamory Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

June 23rd, 2014:
Leading Relationships And The Scene: A Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

July 22nd, 2014: Teaching Tit-Torture For Boobs: A Breast Play Intensive for
SF Citadel

August 25th, 2014:
Leading Relationships And The Scene: A Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

September 23rd, 2014: Teaching Basic Bondage: Tie Me Up On A Budget
for SF Citadel

September 29th, 2014:
Leading Polyamory Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

October 27th, 2014:
Leading Relationships And The Scene: A Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

November 11th, Teaching Sensual Caning: How To Use The Rod In New And Exciting Ways
for SF Citadel

November 24th, 2014:
Leading Polyamory Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

December 22nd, 2014:
Leading Relationships And The Scene: A Discussion/Support Group for SF Citadel

Terrance Aldon Shaw Likes 50 Writers On 50 Shades Of Grey

This is very sweet!  The always-wonderful Terrance Aldon Shaw - who wrote a kick-ass review of my book, How To Write And Sell Erotica - has this nice review of 50 Writers On 50 Shades Of Grey  featuring a lot about my own contribution.

Check it out:

What all the contributors here seem to agree on is that Fifty Shades has become a “game changer” both for publishers and readers, though what this contagious little meme actually conveys is not always clear. In her introduction, Fifty Ways to Look at Fifty Shades, editor Lori Perkins refers positively to the trilogy, going so far as to gush, “I am awed to see the birth of a new erotic classic”, and hope “. . . that these books will usher in a publishing tidal wave of female-centered commercially successful erotica, giving women a new voice for sexual, political and financial choices.” In her essay, Fifty Shades of Change, Louise Fury claims that “. . . what The Vagina Monologues did for women and their vaginas, Fifty Shades has done for women and smut.” In a piece appropriately enough entitled The Game Changer, M. Christian seems reluctantly to agree, though he laments, “It would just be nice that the paradigm shift in literature and publishing would have been better written.”  He goes on to say;

It’s still a total and complete game changer. For one thing, it’s pretty much the final nail in the old school old school world of print publishing. Sure, that model has been gasping and wheezing for a few years now, but for a teeny weeny and badly written book to do what New York dreamt of doing shows once and for all that they need to burn down their old ways and finally begin to embrace the lean, mean, and cutting edge world of e-books.

It’s also another shovel of dirt on another corpse; the concept of old-school marketing. Fifty Shades didn’t succeed because of its brilliant prose, it’s immense advertising budget, or inspired publicity. It scored that coveted number one spot because “mom” E.L. James jumped right in, feetfirst, to social networking and viral marketing with a dogged persistence that’s, frankly, a bit scary. The only bad side of this is—sigh—that for the next five to ten years we’re gonna be bombarded not just with Fifty Shades knock-offs, but all those authors trying the same tricks James did.”    

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Nice Holiday Gift

This made my day (and then some): a wonderful little review/gift about my story in Stocking Stuffers:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2006824.Stocking_Stuffers?from_search=true%22
"Under the Tree," by M. Christian

Speaking of awesome things under the tree, this next story from Stocking Stuffers: Gay Erotic Holiday Stories is a wonderful little tale from M. Christian that manages to balance some "aww!" romance with the racier bits. Roy wakes up to find that Joshua (his fella) is nowhere in sight, but there are some wrapped parcels offering up a surprise. That Joshua is known for these surprises (and Roy's remembrance of previous surprises is a lovely way to set the stage for both the character of Joshua and the ultimate reveal) just adds to the sense of anticipation Roy feels as he begins his trek to figure out what's going to happen.

As you uncover the history between the two men, you also move toward the resolution of this surprise, and as each package is opened and each envelope read, you'll find yourself smiling as the payoff gets ever closer. It's fun. It's light. It's sexy. And it's all wrapped up and ready to enjoy.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Let’s All Sing Like the Birdies Sing… Tweet! Tweet! Tweet! Tweet!

Fantastic!  A brand new Confessions Of A Literary Streetwalker article just went up at the amazing WriteSex site - this time on the hows (and how-nots) of tweeting.  Enjoy!



http://www.amazon.com/dp/B006YGDE6G/ref=cm_sw_su_dp

Okay, to be honest: I used to be extremely anti-Twitter.

It’s not like I’ve done a complete turnaround—far from it—but I’ve begun to use it more seriously, and …I have to grudgingly admit that it can be an effective social media tool.

While I am still fairly new to tweet-tweet-tweeting, I can’t but help notice a lot of authors making what I think are serious mistakes. Part of that, of course, is because twitter is counterintuitive to the way writers think. Unlike blogs and other forms of social media, twitter is ephemeral: tweets coming and going in the space of a few seconds…with few people taking the time to backtrack on what anyone is saying.

This means that quantity is key to tweeting; zapping out a tweet, say, every few days or weeks or only when you have a book or story coming out is pretty much pointless. Even if you have a huge audience of loyal followers, tweeting infrequently means that you will have an very small percentage of that audience who happen to be looking at their Twitter feed for your short pearls of wisdom, or important book announcements, the moment you send them—and that moment, O infrequent tweeter, is the only one you’ve given yourself. To make effective use of Twitter you not only need to tweet every day, you need to tweet several times a day.

And then there’s the question of what you’re tweeting. Yes, you need to talk about your writing; yes, you need to post book announcements; yes, you need to praise your publisher; yes, you need to scream about good reviews…but you also need to come across as a person. So, share interesting information about yourself, share pieces of your writing that you aren’t necessarily trying to sell, talk to your followers as if they were friends (though, not necessarily the kind of friends to whom you’d say anything), rather than potential customers…get my drift? Your followers are interested in your work, but they’re also interested in you.

One thing I’ve been doing—though probably not as much as I should—is a Fun Fact thread: sharing tidbits about little ol’ me that people might find interesting. Hopefully it makes my feed seem a lot less stridently I’M A WRITER READ MY WRITINGS and more human, intriguing, and engaging.
Fortunately, frequent tweeting with varied messages isn’t as hard as it sounds. You don’t have log in to  your twitter account multiple times and send out each tweet manually. With the right tool you can post a half dozen tweets or more all at the same time, and have them sent out every few hours. One of the best tools I’ve found for this (and, no, this isn’t a commercial) is called Hootsuite; it’s a web-based twitter aggregator that allows me to post, schedule, track, and do other fun things, and from more than one Twitter account (which is handy, since I work for a publisher and send out tweets about myself as well about them). The scheduling feature is very handy: I can create multiple tweets and then copy and paste them into Hootsuite’s scheduler—and program them to pop up over the span of a few hours or even days.

Of course, you don’t want the tweets to be mind-numbingly similar and spammy. No one—ever—wants to listen to a commercial, let alone the same one several times a day. So flooding your poor followers with nothing but BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK BUY MY BOOK is not going to sell a single copy, and will more than likely get you unfollowed. Give the repeated content some variety, switch the words around, say the same thing in different words, etc.
Here are four tweets I sent out for one of my books when Sizzler Editions was giving it away free one weekend:

He drank blood but wasn’t a vampire. Even he didn’t know what he was! Free 14-16thh Manlove novel @MChristianzobop http://amzn.com/B00CWNRFYM

#Free 14-16th #Manlove #Vampire classic complete in one ebook Running Dry by @MChristianzobop http://amzn.com/B00CWNRFYM

Like #Manlove #Paranormal #Romance? M. Christian blazes a new trail in Running Dry only @MChristianzobop http://amzn.com/B00CWNRFYM

#Free this weekend only Lambda Finalist M. Christian’s gay vampire classic Running Dry http://amzn.com/B00CWNRFYM

In addition to varying the wording of what is essentially the same information, you can parcel out different bits of information about the same event, in a way that’s easy for late-afternoon or evening tweet-readers to catch up on whatever you’d posted in the morning. Say you were going to a convention where you would be on a panel and also reading. Don’t write one tweet about it. Write a tweet about the fact that you will be there and the dates; another about being on the panel and when it is scheduled; a third about your reading, and when and where.

Another feature of Twitter (and other social media platforms) that a lot of people ignore when sending out info is autosharing. In short, this means that whatever you post to one place gets automatically shared to others. Let’s say I have a blog. Using RSS Graffiti, whatever I post there is picked up on Facebook. Let’s also say I have a Tumblr (I actually have seven). With Tumblr’s built-in system I can share (or not) what I post on it to Twitter and then to Facebook. There is also a setting in Twitter that passes your tweets along to Facebook as well. These settings let you decide what’s automatically reposted where, so your aunt Betty doesn’t end up hearing about your new erotic novel unless you want her to.

It can be a tad confusing—to put it mildly—but it saves a lot of time and effort to automate these things. That said, one word of warning: you want to be careful with a quantity-driven thing like Twitter that you don’t choke your slower-rate social media places like Facebook with too many autoshared reposts—that’ll start to get pretty spammy. Hootsuite, nicely, allows me to post to Facebook as well as Twitter, so I can vary the number of posts I send out to match the nature of the media venue. It may take a bit of trial and error to get this all balanced for rate and time and such but it’s really worth the investment.

Pay attention, as well, to hashtags…though the #trick with #these is #not to overuse #them as your post will look really #silly. You can check trending tags and use those—but all that means is that yours will compete with millions of others. Far better to use them only for what you are really writing about, and then only a few per post.

And retweet items you find important, amusing or interesting. Remember, Twitter is supposed to be social media: meaning that the goal isn’t to talk at people but to them. Tweeting a lot but not actually communicating useful or interesting information is going to get you zilch.

Relatedly, don’t, as too many people do, ignore retweets of your tweets or mentions of your name. It’s not a quid pro quo situation, but it’s nice to pause and acknowledge that someone cared enough to spread your tweets further out into the world. Being ignored, specially by a writer whose career, or books, you have retweeted or shared…well, it doesn’t take much of that for a “follow” to turn into an “unfollow.”

Sure, Twitter too often sounds like a parrot who’s been sitting next to the television for too long and is about as deep as a Justin Bieber song—but the fact remains that, if you approach it intelligently and efficiently, it can be a valuable source of marketing for writers.

Just, as with all social media, try not to get sucked into spending so much time playing with it that you don’t #get #any #writing #done…

Sunday, December 08, 2013

Coming Up: Future Sex At The SF Citadel!

(from M.Christian's Classes And Appearances)

This is gonna be a blast!  I'm going to be teaching my very fun class called Future Sex for the always-great SF Citadel on December 10th.  Here's the info:


Tuesday, December 10, 2013 · 8:00 PM –10:00 PM  

SF Citadel Community Center

181 Eddy Street, San Francisco, CA

Cost: $20 at the door or $15 in advance using WePay: www.wepay.com/events/sfc-class-12102013



Welcome to the World Of Tomorrow! Sure, we have iPads, iPhones, Viagra, the staggering depths of the Internet, but what could the day after tomorrow bring? In this combination discussion and lecture, participants will share in some thought experiments on what sex may be like in the year year – or the next thousand years. Subjects included will be speculations on drug and chemical enhancements, extrapolation on current – and future – consumer technology, where gender and sexual orientation may be headed, the idea of artificial implants and enhancements, and even the prospects of intimate encounters with cyborgs, androids, robots, and artificial intelligences.



About the presenter:


M. Christian has been an active participant in the San Francisco BDSM scene since 1988, and has been a featured presenter at the Northwest Leather Celebration, smOdyssey, the Center For Sex and Culture, The National Sexuality Symposium, QSM, San Francisco Sex Information, The Citadel, The Looking Glass, The Society of Janus, The Floating World, Winter Solstice, and lots of other venues. He has taught classes on everything from impact play, tit torture, bondage, how to write and sell erotica, polyamory, cupping, caning, and basic SM safety.



M. Christian is also a recognized master of BDSM erotica with more than 400 stories in such anthologies as Best American Erotica, Best Gay Erotica, Best Lesbian Erotica, Best Bisexual Erotica, Best Fetish Erotica, and many other anthologies, magazines, and other sites; editor of 2t anthologies such as the Best S/M Erotica series, Pirate Booty, My Love For All That Is Bizarre: Sherlock Holmes Erotica, and more; the collections Dirty Words, The Bachelor Machine, Love Without Gun Control, Rude Mechanicals, and more; and the novels Running Dry, The Very Bloody Marys, Me2, Finger's Breadth, Brushes, and Painted Doll. His site is www.mchristian.com

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Confessions Of A Literary Streetwalker: "A Cookie Full Of Arsenic"

Check it out: I just posted one of my classic "Streetwalker" columns on the wonderful Erotic Readers And Writers site.

Here's a tease - for the rest click here


Ever seen Sweet Smell of Success?  If you haven't then you should: because, even though the film was shot in 1957, it rings far too much, and far too loudly, in 2013.

In a nutshell, Sweet Smell of Success (directed by Alexander Mackendrick from a script by the amazing Clifford Odets and Ernest Lehman) is about the all-powerful columnist J.J. Hunsecker (Burt Lancaster) – who can make or break anyone and anything he wants -- and the desperate press agent Sidney Falco (Tony Curtis), who loses everything for trying to curry favor with Hunsecker for ... well, that Sweet Smell of Success.

So ... 1957 to 2013.  A lot's changed, that's for sure.  But recently rewatching this, one of my all-time favorite films, gave me a very uncomfortable chill.  But first a bit of history (stop that groaning): you see, J.J. Hunsecker was based – more than thinly – on another all-powerful columnist, the man who once said, about the who he was, and the power he wielded as, " I'm just a son of a bitch."

There was even a word, created by Robert Heinlein of all people, to describe a person like this: winchell – for the man himself -- Walter Winchell.

A book, movie, star, politician – anyone who wanted success would do, and frequently did, anything for both Walter and his fictional doppelganger J.J. Hunsecker.  Their power was absolute ... even a rumor, a fraction of a sentence could mean the difference between headlines and the morgue of a dead career.  As Hunsecker puts it to a poor entertainer who crossed him: "You're dead, son. Get yourself buried."

[MORE]

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Terrance Aldon Shaw Likes How To Write And Sell Erotica

This is ultra-cool!  The very fun Terrance Aldon Shaw - on his Erotica For The Big Brain site - has this very flattering, and thoughtful, review of my book, How To Write And Sell Erotica.

Here's a taste (for the rest click here)

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B006YGDE6G/ref=cm_sw_su_dp
 
M. Christian’s How to Write and Sell Erotica is a collection of short essays drawn from his regular blog postings on the ERWA website. As one might expect from their origins in the blogosphere, the style of these pieces is personal, pithily opinionated and, at times charmingly irreverent; informal but always informative. Topics are wide ranging, touching on numerous issues of concern to established and aspiring writers of genre (i.e. non-literary) erotica. I especially like Christian’s definition of erotica as works that “do not blink” when it comes time to describe sexual activity—a healthy counterweight to the sort of prissy detachment on display in Benedict’s book. His repeated observation that, in our society, if you cut off somebody’s head “you get an R rating; if you show someone giving head, you get an NC-17” is right on the money in addition to being funny as hell because it’s so maddeningly true. I find moving his suggestion that, perhaps, someday society will achieve such a level of enlightenment, frankness and maturity that erotica will disappear as a separate genre—would that it could be so in our lifetime. Like Bright, Christian does his share of cheerleading, offering encouragement and inspiration, though usually with a healthy dose of realism and a plea to maintain a set of realistic expectations. There are so many marvelous quotable passages in these essays I find it hard to choose only one; so updating the ancient practice of sortilegium for the Age of the E-Reader, here’s one at random:
One more thing you could do [by writing erotica] is help people. We don’t like sex in this country. Sure, we sell beer and cars with it, but we don’t like it. We’re scared of it. Living in this world with anything that’s not beer and car commercial sexuality can be a very frightening and lonely experience. Too many people feel that they are alone, or that what they like to do sexually is wrong, sinful or sick. Now, I’m not talking about violent or abusive sexual feelings, but rather am interest in something that harms no one and that other people have discovered to be harmless or even beneficial. If you treat what you’re writing about with respect, care and understanding, you could reach out to someone somewhere and help them understand and maybe even get through their bad feelings about their sexuality—bad feelings, by the way, that maybe have been dished out by the lazy and ignorant for way too long. 
As with any book of this type, readers will not always agree with the author on every point—and that’s as it should be. For instance, I don't agree with Christian--or Stephen King for that matter--who argue that a writer should never resort to a thesaurus. (As the compiler of The Erotic Writer's Thesaurus on this site, you can bet I disagree!) Nor does Christian like the idea of constantly “changing up” descriptive words in a text, especially where bodily parts are concerned. Others may be horrified, recalling nightmare critique sessions in creative writing class where they were admonished to avoid repetition and parallelism like the plague. Christian could have a point, although his tone may be a tad too ex-cathedra not to wrinkle a few noses, I remain skeptically neutral on this particular issue, while Christian is happy to inform his readers that he never got much out of those creative  writing courses. He also doesn’t particularly like being reviewed—“shut up!” I think were his exact words. All I can say is; tough titties, dude; the book is recommended, so suck on it!
[MORE]

Monday, December 02, 2013

Billierosie Likes Brushes!

This comes from my very sweet friend, Billierosie:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FFLAJ8W/ref=cm_sw_su_dp

Through a variety of protagonists M Christian explores the character of the enigmatic and charismatic Artist, Escobar. The story is a step away from Christian's futuristic erotic fantasies, which were a delight in THE BACHELOR MACHINE and another new novel from Christian, THE PAINTED DOLL.

In BRUSHES we are taken into a new and succulent territory which is overwhelming with its elegant prose. The characters are exotic, strange but familiar too, with the reader relating to each protagonist's confusion, as he or she tries to unravel the mystery that is Escobar. Set in France, there is no doubt that Christian cherishes and knows that country well; in fact his style is worthy of travel writing at its best, being worth a comparison with Paul Theroux. As with Theroux's work you see the country in the prose. Christian's France isn't always beautiful, sometimes it's downright dirty; but it's always what can always be expected from M Christian; very, very sexy!

Yet More Philosophy


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Donna George Storey Loves Brushes

Donna George Storey, a wonderful person and an absolutely fantastic writer, posted this touching review of Brushes - including a mini interview - on her Sex, Food and Writing blog awhile ago.  And, since this erotic romance novel has just been released by the wonderful Sizzler Editions I thought I'd repost it.  Thanks again, Donna!


I’ve been an admiring fan of M. Christian’s work since well before I began writing erotica myself. He’s edited twenty anthologies and written over three hundred stories, four novels, and four short story collections, with numerous appearances in Best American Erotica and other Best of’s as well as being an annually returning alumnus of The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica. His narrators and protagonists come in a rainbow of sexual preferences, yet the stories are always incandescently erotic and convincing. On top of this, his work spans a range of genres, from literary to horror, science fiction and a soupcon of erotic romance.

I’ve always wondered what the “M” in M. Christian stands for, but I’m pretty sure it stands for “Maestro”!

I recently had the pleasure of reading one of his most recent novels, Brushes. A multi-layered treat for the mind and the senses, Brushes reminded me how a well-written novel can really draw you into a totally different world and keep you there, enchanted. M. Christian transports us to glittering Paris where we follow the adventures of eight denizens of the art world, from an acclaimed artist and his muses to desperate wannabes. As their lives brush up against each other, serendipitously, inevitably, all experience a compelling sexual encounter that changes their lives forever. The variety of sex scenes is like a tempting buffet, the prose as silky smooth as a pot de crème. The novel definitely raises fascinating questions about the artist’s life and the silliness of the business surrounding it. This tale of mystery will definitely provoke and entertain anyone who’s intrigued by the power of the creative--and the erotic—spirit.

That’s me, baby—how about you?

And now, I have the even greater pleasure of inviting the Maestro to my blog to chat about writing, erotica and sensual indulgence of the culinary persuasion.

DGS: I’ve always been amazed at your versatility as a writer, your virtuoso ability to cross genres and genders. How do you do it? Or are you actually a shapeshifter from another galaxy?

MC: Nah, I’m just a classic hack, though being a shapeshifter from another galaxy would make it a lot easier to find a date on Saturday night.

How did you get started writing erotica?

Well, I’ve always wanted to be a writer – in fact I first remember deciding it would be the life I wanted to live when I was in the fourth grade or so – but I had zero luck with it for, oh, about fifteen years. Tired of rejection slips, I signed up for an erotica writing class from Lisa Palac, who used to edit a magazine called Future Sex. My thought at the time was something like: why the hell not?

Turns out I was pretty good at pornography – who knew? – and Lisa bought my first story, which was subsequently published by Susie Bright in her Best American Erotica 1994. The rest, as the cliché goes, is history.

You’ve been publishing erotica for a long time now. In your view, how has the genre and the publishing environment changed over the years.
Lordy, that’s a big subject! Right off the top of my head I’d guess the biggest change has got to be the death – or imminent death, to be polite – of the traditional publishing model of business. Printed books are simply way too expensive to produce, especially these days, and far too difficult to sell. Sure, there will always be big houses operating like we’re still in the ‘50s but going forward we’re going to see far more small-to-medium-sized publishers connecting with very specific audiences. That’s good news for readers, as a publisher’s profit doesn’t have to be hundreds of thousands of dollars. Only having to make a few thousand means they can take risks and produce books for very narrow-focused interests. The bad news, though, is that the days of huge – or even large – advances for authors are gone … bummer. Don’t despair, though. Because the smaller publishers don’t have huge overhead, they can pay better royalties, and because of Amazon – the sort-of-great literary equalizer -- a small-time author has about the same ‘shelf’ space as a big-time one … the trick, of course, is to get yourself noticed.

You’re now blogging at Imagination is Intelligence with an Erection, Frequently Felt, Meine Kleine Fabrik and The New Café (Racer) Society. What do you like about blogging? How does it fit into your fiction writing schedule?

Actually The New Café (Racer) Society is a two-wheeled, one-man enterprise run by my brother, S.A. – who works with me on Meine Kleine Fabrik. I like blogs because they’re a way to get yourself out there. With Meine Kleine Fabrik, which is German for “My Little Factory,” the name of a jewelry company S.A. used to have, it’s a kind of commonplace book; a way of sharing the fun and wild and weird and silly and cool things we’ve come across. Frequently Felt is kind of the same thing but with a sexy twist – and is also a place where authors can share their work as well: my way of opening the door for new erotica writers. Imagination is Intelligence with an Erection, is my writing site: the place where I post reviews, announcements about new projects, new books and suchlike.

I kind of cheat, to be honest, with these blogs: I usually just post or repost stuff I find. Sure it makes them a bit less ‘rich’ but I simply don’t understand writers who spend hours posting and no time on their craft. Working on stories and books is what I love to do, so they will always be my top priority.

One of the pleasures for me while I was reading Brushes was the chance to come to my own conclusions about the shadowy central figure, the artist Escobar, based on the clues provided by the perspectives of the different narrators. It’s also fun to see how the different characters “brush up” against each other in different ways on the streets of Paris. But what might be pleasure for the reader could present a real logistical challenge for the author. Did you have a particular strategy to plan and keep track of all the “brushes” in the novel?

Thank you so much – it means a lot to me that you liked it!

While it was a tad challenging, it was also a lot of fun to do. My motivation was to try to put together something showing our various ‘faces:’ like the Donna I know isn’t the Donna other people know, etc. In the case of Escobar these multiple ‘faces’ are amplified because of his fame: the people around him have their own perspectives on him, twisted by jealousy, fear, unreasonable admiration, and all those other lovely emotions. Occasionally I’d find myself ‘painted into a corner’ especially since I was trying to tell the story from different perspectives but also taking place at the same time. Although there are some things I wish I’d done better, I thought it came out pretty well. I guarantee I’ll do better with the next book, and the one after that, and the one after that, and the one after that ….

Your novel has countless wonderful examples of how an erotic scene reveals character—this is really the heart of the book. I’ve chosen this excerpt from chapter 4, told from the point of view of Marcel, a snobbish, fastidious gallery owner, who has called in a paid companion to “celebrate” after a long day in the art business. Here’s a tasty sampling of the scene:

"I love my breasts," she said. "I love they way they look, but I really like the way they feel." Purple painted nails slid over the slopes, stroked under, and deliberately hesitated over the rises of her nipples. One hand went behind, reaching for another clasp, preparing for another revelation.

More than at any time in recent memory, he was aroused. With Josephine it had been there, but more abstract, more a quality of the whole experience than a pulse-matched deep down, stirring where he wasn't Marcel the gentleman, the rich man, the owner of L'Art, but rather just a man and a very demanding desire. He might still be struck by silence, but he could move.

There was a good reason Zazu would love her breasts. They were phenomenal. Large yet exceptionally firm, they swept gently from the satin of her chest, ending in two saucer-sized, swollen areolas, topped by aggressively firm nipples the color of fresh strawberries and the size of gumdrops. As her bra joined her clothes at her feet, her breasts swung and jiggled, a mesmerizing display.

"Aren't they beautiful? I'm so lucky. But what's even better is that I like how they feel, not just how they look." With thumb and forefinger she tightly plucked at her right nipple, much harder than he'd ever seen a woman do before. She hissed, deep and languid, in response. Then the same, this time to the left, but now the hiss became a moan and her knees seemed to lose a bit of their strength. "Oh, wow," she said through a sharp laugh.

Stroking himself, he realized he didn't care that he was or that she knew he was. It was too good. This woman was beautiful and sexy, and more importantly, he was enjoying himself more than he ever had before. How his zipper had come down, how he'd extracted himself from his underwear, he didn't know, but there it was and he wasn't about to stop. Again, the question -- but this time only the barest of whispers in his mind and nowhere near a loud thought: what am I? The answer came immediately: I am me... and I like this.

The other nipple again; this time she had to catch herself before dropping all the way to the carpet. It took her some time to pull herself up and stand straight. "I like this. It's one of my... things, I guess you could call it." Peering through her purple bangs, she caught his gaze with hers. "Having fun?"

Even before he'd realized he'd broken the silence, he found his voice. "I-I am."

Do you have a particular favorite among the characters or scenes in Brushes? Any that were harder or easier to write?

Once again, I really appreciate your kindness and support, Donna! Writing can be a damned hard life so compliments and kindness – especially from a writer I like and admire – are a real treat!

Each of the characters in Brushes had their challenges, as well as their easier bits. I’m so glad you liked Marcel: he was a particularly fun one as I was trying to use his sexuality as a pretty broad reflection of his personality: removed and controlling in life, removed and controlling in bed. Escobar was probably the hardest because as I was ‘doing’ him, I kept thinking that here he is, the guy everyone’s talking about. A bit of pressure there ….

What’s next for you?

Let’s see … working on a gay horror novel called Monster that should be done in a few months. Have a new collection of straight erotica coming out soon, called Licks & Promises. Both The Bachelor Machine, my science fiction erotica collection, and Dirty Words, which is a gay erotica collection, are being reprinted and should be out soon. I’m also chatting with some publishers about doing some new anthologies – more on those very soon. I’ve also done my first screenplay, the movie for which should be shooting soon, and I’m working on other fun stuff as well. Just keep an eye on my blog for more info and updates and such.

Finally, describe a perfect meal that would be guaranteed to seduce you—into a deep conversation about the writing life, if not something even juicier!

A perfect meal? Hummm … I love a lot of food, and have a long list of great restaurants, but to make any meal perfect I’d have to have the company of my wonderful lady, and soon-to-be-wife, Sage Vivant. As I already mentioned, writing can all-to-often be a brutal and hard life. I am very fortunate to have found the woman of my dreams, and would never do anything without her.

Well, congratulations--that's definitely a match made in erotica heaven!! I wish you both all the happiness in the world (as well as many delicious meals together).

Thanks so much for stopping by to talk shop with me. And for those of you interested in some more hot-and-hot-off-the-presses M. Christian fiction, check out his novel Painted Doll and Hack Work, a series of short story downloads, as well.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Erotic Tattoos Von Gutenberg, and I

This is extremely fun: I'm tickled to have an article on the history of erotic tattoos in the brand new issue of the premier fetish fashion magazine, Von Gutenberg!

http://vongutenberg.com/blog/2013/11/05/von-gutenberg-magazine-issue-8-with-megan-massacre/
Erik von Gutenberg is especially proud to announce Issue 8 with Megan Massacre, an amazing artist, great person and friend of Von Gutenberg!

TLC star Megan Massacre lights up tat-tastic issue # 8 of our international fashion quarterly, Von Gutenberg Magazine. Megan is the star of shows “N.Y. Ink” & “America’s Worst Tattoos” and along with models Bibiana Atada from Switzerland and Germany’s Onna Sakura, the petite tattooed T.V. star graces the startling candy colored cover of our fall 2013/winter 2014 issue.
Regulars Armando Huerta and Fang Ling Lee are on board with their fantasy art, Robert Archer’s House of Harlot and Louis Fleischauer’s AMF Korsets from Germany are the featured designers and photographers like Phillip Faith and Florida’s Antonio Angelo Piracci add to the provocative latex mayhem that makes Von Gutenberg the one-of-a-kind lifestyler’s dream publication.
Offered as both a print periodical and digitally for all eReaders, this latest issue of Von Gutenberg Magazine is another in a fine line of elegant issues released from your most trusted name in Fetish Fashion Couture.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

What I'm Doing (Ahem) At Dark Odyssey: Surrender

(from M.Christian's Classes And Appearances)

 

This is gonna be a blast-and-a-half!  I'm not only gonna be attending the kink-fest that's Dark Odyssey: Surrender in San Francisco but I'm gonna be teaching two classes as well -

- and here they are.  Hope to see you there!
 

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Sex Sells: How To Write and Sell Erotica
The market for erotic fiction and nonfiction is booming! There actually is a secret to writing great erotica - and you'll discover just what that is in this fun, hands-on workshop with well-known erotica writer and teacher M.Christian. For the beginning writer, erotica can be the ideal place to begin writing, getting published, and - best of all - earning money. And for the experienced writer, erotica can be an excellent way to beef up your resume and hone your writing skills. M. Christian will review the varieties of personal and literary expression possible in this exciting and expanding field. He'll also teach you techniques for creating love and sex scenes that sizzle. Plus: current pay rates, how to write for a wide variety of erotic genres, where and how to submit your erotic writing, and more.


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Tell Me A Story: Using Erotic Writing To Create Hot Scenes

Toys?  Check!  Dungeon space?  10-4!  Playmate?  Ready, willing and able!  Okay, so you have everything you think you need to create a really hot scene ... but, well, have you ever read erotica?  Of course you have ... and what makes for the hottest sex scenes, the wildest BDSM sessions?  The answer, of course, is story: the journey of the master or slave from where they were to where they are now, not just the toys, space, or bodies involved.  In this playful and thought-provoking lecture/class, erotica master M.Christian will show how to use storytelling techniques to add a powerful new dimension to not just a single scene but to possibly your entire BDSM playlife.  From creating a sexual persona to using dramatic structure to put together a molten hot experience, from working with the transformative nature of both BDSM and fiction to using writing as sexual self-exploration, Tell Me A Story will amuse as well as enlighten the seasoned as well as beginning BDSM player. 

Reading Positions


Friday, November 01, 2013

My Convolution Schedule!

(from M.Christian's Classes And Appearances)


This is going to be a blast - here's my schedule for the this weekend convention, Convolution ... where I'll be on all kinds of fun panels and such:


Saturday, November 2

10:00am: Nightmare Landscapes

4:00pm: What to Do When Your Characters Don't Do What You Want Them To?

8:00pm: Cultures Beyond the Usual

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Sunday, November 3

11:00am: Storytelling the Old Fashioned Way




Thursday, October 24, 2013

My Love of All that is Bizarre: The Erotic Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Now Out In Paperback!

Here's some very cool news: the fantastic Suzzler Editions has just released the anthology I edited, My Love of All that is Bizarre: The Erotic Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, in a special, dead-tree paperback edition! 

 

 

In Control - The Introduction

To help celebrate my new BDSM erotica collection - from the always-great Sizzler Editions - In Control, here's the intro - hope you like!


INTRODUCTION: DISCLOSURE

I've written a lot of things over the years: gay erotica, lesbian erotica, bisexual erotica, all kinds (of every kind) of fetish erotica ... plus a smattering of romance, science fiction, horror, fantasy, and even non-fiction.
But, recently, a friend of mine said something that stopped me dead in my authorial tracks: "Why don't you write about what turns you on?"
To be honest, I've always been a bit ... resistant to writing about myself.  Part of it comes from the fact that I consider my sex life to be what I guess you could call sacred: a cherished time shared between me and the person I happen to be playing with.  I've always thought that writers who – and this is not meant as an insult ... or not too much of one – who sell their own sex lives on the page to be profiting from an intimate sharing of desire.  Another part, I freely admit, is that for all my writing and sex-ed teaching I'm still a bit shy when it comes to being out about what honestly, truly turns me on.
But, thinking about this, I had a freeze-me-in-my-tracks revelation: I actually write a lot about myself.
Take this book, for instance: a collection of some of my short fiction – a lot of it with a BDSM kink: pretty much every story here is a part of me.  Yes, the details may not be exactly me, but the emotional side of things – the important side as anyone who really understands about sexuality – is pretty much as intimate as you can get: "Alice" is the giddy nerves that comes with telling a lover what turns you on, "Moving" is about finding that special someone you can drop your guard down with, "In Control" is the fretting that arrives with the next day, "The Tinkling Of Tiny Silver Bells" is the glorious feeling of unquestioning love, "Dust" is the beautiful tears of being forgiven, "The Waters Of Biscayne Bay" is the liberation in the enlightened joy of a lover loving another person, Painted Doll was all about the tearing-of-the-heart from being too many miles away, and the sample chapter from Brushes is all about the pleasure that comes from giving pleasure ... and so on and so forth, with just about everything I've ever written.
When I teach erotic writing I talk very much about this: that the details aren't really important, that the best way of reaching out to anyone, no matter what you are writing, is to dig down deep and put down, onto the page, your own emotional truth.  Like a lot of teachers I simply forgot to listen to my own lesson.
So here are some stories I sincerely hope you'll like ... for, like when I spend time with a lover, it gives me immeasurable pleasure to put a smile on another person's face.
–M.Christian

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What Folks Are Saying About Brushes

In celebration of the re-release of my erotic romance novel, Brushes, here's what some very cool people have said about it:


M. Christian is an author of formidable talent and impressive flexibility. He writes equally convincingly from straight, gay or lesbian perspectives, and is a master at seamlessly melding multiple genres.
- Lisabet Sarai, author of Raw Silk and Rough Caress

As convoluted and erotic as a skein of pure silk
- Ann Regentin, author of Second Sight and A Foolish World

Brushes is my favorite kind of novel—a multi-layered treat for the mind and the senses. M.Christian transports us to glittering Paris where we follow the adventures of eight denizens of the art world, from an acclaimed artist and his muses to desperate wannabes. As their lives brush up against each other, serendipitously, inevitably, all experience a compelling sexual encounter that changes their lives forever. A deliciously sexy tale of mystery for anyone who’s intrigued by the power of the creative--and the erotic-spirit
- Donna George Storey, author of Amorous Woman

Evocative and carnal, M.Christian's Brushes portrays multiple perspectives on the life of an artist in Paris, from the gloriously hot sex that he indirectly inspires in his models, his gallery representative and the forger of his work to the embittered fantasies of his estranged wife and brother. Christian has captured the feel of a European art world that draws the reader in, leaving them wanting to learn more about this man, his virtues and faults. Brushes is that rarest of combinations: a marvelous erotic novel and a good read, full of intriguing characters.
- Catherine Lundoff, author of Crave: Tales of Lust, Love and Longing, and Night's Kiss

Those who follow the prolific M.Christian will not want to miss this latest addition to his published work. Brushes is a straight, erotic, mainstream novel arranged in a collection of novellas. It's the story of an artist and the various people in his life. As is typical of M.Christian the quality of Brushes does not disappoint
- Jolie du Pre, author of erotica and erotic romance.

We can never know how lives will intertwine; the mystery of it is one of the hidden joys of life. M.Christian has captured perfectly the symmetry and surprise of lives that mesh together -- whether the people living them like it or not. In following the life of a painter and everyone he touches, Brushes proves everything is not always as it seems. Just as Escobar creates masterpieces with canvas and paint, M. Christian creates a gorgeous tapestry of words.
- Gwen Masters, author of One Breath at a Time

Friday, October 18, 2013

DIRTY WORDS And RUNNING DRY - Out Now In Print!

(from M.Christian's Queer Imaginings)

Here's some great news for all your folks who are fans of dead-tree editions: the fantastic folks at Sizzler Editions has just released two of my queer books as print editions - each for just $9.00!


Manlove trilogy first time ever in one volume!

M.Christian's masterful queer thriller/horror series is now complete. He’s immortal. He drinks blood. But he's not a vampire. Doud’s totally unique – a being no one’s ever seen before – and he’s desperately lonely for a lover: a special someone who will not just join him in his bed but his strange life as well. But every time he thinks he's found someone it all goes horrifically wrong. Then one day a monster from his past returns: a thing of bitterness and fury he believed was long dead. Doud, with his friend Shelly in tow, begins a terrifying chase that begins in Los Angeles and ends in a blistering confrontation in the desert’s baking wastes. 

There, in the heat and the dust, Doud will confront what he is, what he’s become, his deepest and darkest sexual desires and lusts. Doud will get what he’s always wanted out of his long, strange life–but it will be nothing that Doud, or you, could ever have imagined!

Lambda Literary Award Finalist for best gay collection!

M.Christian shows just how hot and imaginative manlove erotica can be! From mischievous Native American spirits, to victims of cybernetic nightmares, these stories will enthrall, arouse, shock and – always – turn you on. M. Christian's well-crafted tales, filled with what some people call dirty words and dirty men, will touch you in ways you’d never expect. 
With a very special introduction by Patrick Califia. 
"A sense awakening experience, which enlivens and sweeps you away in the same narrative breath.... It’s dark, it’s dangerous, it’s horny, it’s mouthwatering, it’s witty and it’s sharp. Read my lips: Read this book."- Skin Two 
"To get the most out of M.Christian's haunting mix of rapture and horror, love of language and lust for flesh, read him out loud. If you have someone to read him out loud to, someone who knows that the best porn is also art, you're both very lucky." - Clean Sheets 
"Part folklore, part horror, part brutal romance - and all erotically kick-ass. Dirty Words takes readers in a tour of 14 contorted mental interiors and labyrinthine psychic dungeons inhabiting M.Christian's mind. Smart, hot, and vorpal-blade sharp, Dirty Words is perfect reading for those who love their sex fantasies in-you-face." -AVN

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Welcome To Weirdsville: Fear Itself (Back On Dark Roasted Blend)

(from M.Christian's Meine Kleine Fabrik)

This is very cool: the great Avi of the extra-great Dark Roasted Blend just reprinted our article on the Deadliest Creatures (that are Easiest to Miss) - which is also in my book Welcome To Weirdsville as "Fear Itself."

Check out this tease below - or click though to read the whole thing ... or buy the book:


Real terror lurks in quiet darkness

The deadliest (and easiest to miss) critters lurk in dark silence, ready to strike with either the barest of warnings or none at all - and with absolutely fatal venom.
 
Some you've heard about, and so sit there and scoff. Yeah, big deal: rattlesnake, cobra, black widow -- either you can hear them coming, avoid going to India, or simply not stick your hands into dark places. They are nothing but annoyances: fatal only to the truly stupid, or very sick... But there are others, nasty little things as vicious and deadly as they are quiet and unassuming. 
1. The Cone Snail: can kill you in less than 4 minutes 
Say, for instance, you are happily walking through the low surf merrily picking up and discarding shells, looking for just the right one to decorate your desk back at the office.
With no warning at all, however, you feel a sharp sting from one of those pretty shells -- a sting that quickly flares into a crawling agony. With that quick sting, the cone snail's barbed spear has insidiously injected you with one of the most potent neurotoxins in existence. 
[MORE]

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

What People Are Saying About BRUSHES

In celebration of the re-release of my erotic romance, Brushes (by the fantastic Sizzler Editions) here are some nice, juicy, blurbs and such:



M.Christian is an author of formidable talent and impressive flexibility. He writes equally convincingly from straight, gay or lesbian perspectives, and is a master at seamlessly melding multiple genres.
- Lisabet Sarai, author of Raw Silk and Rough Caress

As convoluted and erotic as a skein of pure silk.
- Ann Regentin, author of Second Sight, and A Foolish World

Brushes is my favorite kind of novel—a multi-layered treat for the mind and the senses. M.Christian transports us to glittering Paris where we follow the adventures of eight denizens of the art world, from an acclaimed artist and his muses to desperate wannabes. As their lives brush up against each other, serendipitously, inevitably, all experience a compelling sexual encounter that changes their lives forever. A deliciously sexy tale of mystery for anyone who’s intrigued by the power of the creative--and the erotic—spirit.
- Donna George Storey, author of Amorous Woman

Evocative and carnal, M.Christian's Brushes portrays multiple perspectives on the life of an artist in Paris, from the gloriously hot sex that he indirectly inspires in his models, his gallery representative and the forger of his work to the embittered fantasies of his estranged wife and brother. Christian has captured the feel of a European art world that draws the reader in, leaving them wanting to learn more about this man, his virtues and faults. Brushes is that rarest of combinations: a marvelous erotic novel and a good read, full of intriguing characters.
- Catherine Lundoff, author of Crave: Tales of Lust, Love and Longing, and Night's Kiss

Those who follow the prolific M.Christian will not want to miss this latest addition to his published work. Brushes is a straight, erotic, mainstream novel arranged in a collection of novellas. It's the story of an artist and the various people in his life. As is typical of M. Christian the quality of Brushes does not disappoint.
- Jolie du Pre, author of erotica and erotic romance.

We can never know how lives will intertwine; the mystery of it is one of the hidden joys of life. M.Christian has captured perfectly the symmetry and surprise of lives that mesh together -- whether the people living them like it or not. In following the life of a painter and everyone he touches, Brushes proves everything is not always as it seems. Just as Escobar creates masterpieces with canvas and paint, M. Christian creates a gorgeous tapestry of words.
- Gwen Masters, author of One Breath at a Time

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Confessions of a Literary Streetwalker: Writing Coaches and Teachers


Check this out: the fun article I wrote for the new - and wonderful - WriteSex site has just gone up at the equally wonderful Erotica Readers And Writers site.  Here's a tease:


For new writers, the temptation is obvious: after all, if you don’t know something, shouldn’t you seek out a way to learn about it? The question of how to educate yourself as a writer is a necessary and important one, of course, but an often-invisible second question follows: how do you sift through the piles of would-be writing coaches, teachers and other purveyors of advice to find the ones who will lead you toward genuinely better writing? The problem isn’t that there are over-eager teachers galore, but that far too many of them are preaching from ignorance—or just dully quoting what others have already said.

This is particularly true of erotic romance. Now, I have to admit I’ve been more than a bit spoiled by other genres, where you can write about whatever you want without much of a chance—beyond clumsy writing—of getting rejected for not toeing the line, so approaching erotic romance has been a bit more of a challenge. Romance authors, after all, have been told time and time again that there is a very precise, almost exacting, Way of Doing Things … and if you don’t, then bye-bye book deal.

But times have changed, and while a few stubborn publishers still want erotic romantic fiction that follows established formulas, the quantum leap of digital publishing has totally shaken up by-the-numbers approaches to romance writing. Without going too much into it (maybe in another column…), because ebooks are so much easier to produce, publishers can take wonderful risks on new authors and concepts, meaning that they don’t have to wring their hands in fright that the new title they greenlit will go bust and possibly take the whole company with it.

Because of this freedom, erotic romance can be so much more than it ever was: experimental, innovative, unique, challenging, etc. These are no longer the Words of Death when it comes to putting together a book.

One of the great, underlying tasks of teaching—one I love, but with some reverence and an occasional pang of dread—is challenging the boring, formulaic, way that so many talk about writing (which is also to say that a huge part of the reason I love to teach is that it’s a weird form of revenge against all the bad writing teachers I’ve had over the years). There are, however, far too many writing teachers who relentlessly parrot that erotic romance has to follow a strict formula to be successful. They spell out this formula in stomach-cramping detail: what has to happen to each and every character, in each and every chapter, in each and every book.

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