Hello, and welcome.

After putting some finality on The Paramedic series with The Never Ending Nightmare, and with a continuation of Born Bent Over still on and off, I took a little time away from the laptop and did some home remodeling and worked in my workshop to try and clear my head and come up for some new ideas for my next cloistered adventure in my office. God bless my understanding, saint of a wife. She suffers my peculiarities with just the occasional shake of her head.

After about six months, plenty of splinters and some unique, permanent paint stains (including a few on our two Dachshunds) a few sparks started firing around in my aged gray matter. Stay tuned for future information on those.

Determination ruling the day, I assembled a new playlist on my media player and made the requisite trip to the office supply store; known as both Mecca and Purgatory to most writers, and filled my cart with the standard office supplies: pens, legal pads, pencils, Twizzlers, spice gumdrops…the standard supplies.

But between the last spinning contest in my desk chair, and the last blue streak of curses spewed after the ever present, poorly aimed hammer injuries, poorly measured cuts and paint spills, I bought a few ebooks from other writers who write in the erotica-love story world to get an idea of what others were doing to advance the growing interest in, and diminish the age old stigma of, the erotica genre.

Let me state here that some of you have some very vivid and far flung imaginations! And, not surprisingly, some of you are truly sick and twisted. And to all of you I say: write on!

It has, unfortunately, been my experience that while diminishing somewhat, erotica writing bought by sane, rational, normal people are still kept in secret files on tablets and laptops in folders named “recipes” or “taxes.” Our puritanical roots still runs deep in much of our society. The stigma of the dark, sleazy, sticky floored movie houses of Pee Wee Herman fame, and the curtained back rooms at the video store where the evil porn flicks were hidden from their unintended audience still seems to keep those petrified by the fear of being a known as an erotica fan behind closed doors.

While even I do have a certain line I don’t cross in my writings, I fully support and defend those who choose to go somewhat beyond that line in their reading and writing tastes. I look forward to the day when the stigma is lifted as more and more readers aren’t afraid of, or could care less if their Alexa is reporting back to the porn police that they’d purchased a racy erotica novel to read in front of the fireplace on a cold winter’s day.

Contrary to what your mom told you, it won’t make you go blind.

From the reading I’ve done, I have determined that there truly are vast, far flung differences in the genre, yet all books with any kind of explicit love scenes are required to carry the dreaded adult content, scarlet letter. From the more graphic parodies of The Hunchback of Notre Dame to the imagined antics of the crew of the Star Ship Enterprise, they’re all still lumped together in the dank bowels of the online book sellers.

On Smashwords, where I initially sell my work for distribution on Amazon, Apple and others, no one who is just perusing the site, looking for a good read, without being a member and signing in, is allowed access to any books with the aforementioned adult content, scarlet letter descriptor. It’s done to keep those under the age of eighteen from purchasing a book or story they’re not legally allowed to purchase. I can understand that to some degree. But come on! Graphically vivid, free porn videos for every taste and fetish are available all over the web for anyone with a mouse to view. The adult content rating limits access to my work and the work of others who write stories involving explicit love scenes between consenting adults to those who bite the bullet, request membership on the site and subject themselves to the constant string of pesky emails from the site and the third party minions they sell your email address to. You know the routine. Sign on to a news feed and you’ll soon be inundated with scads of those sales offers for everything from copper cookware to quirky tee shirts that foul your inbox numerous times daily . As we have all learned, surrendering your email address on any site on the web is a guaranteed prelude to hours spent deleting junk mail. Sadly, just logging on to Facebook these days makes you a target for ads for anything you’ve purchased online since the advent of online sales.

Along with the sites’ ban on things like erotic works containing child porn, bestiality, rape, etc., (a limitation I do support and understand-all of which are far, far over that line I never cross) the behind the curtain, backroom, dank leaky basement placement erotica is relegated to needs to end. The stigma needs to be lifted with, of course, the above referenced limitations being adhered to.

While I consider myself a writer and teller of love stories with plausible plots and, yes, some steamy love scenes, I don’t believe I’m destined to eternity in asbestos underwear, dodging the piercings of Satan’s pitchfork. Nor do I believe those who read erotica will suffer that fate. While discussions regarding sex still bring about blushes and giggles from the immature, (and lawsuits or professional ruination for injured sensitivities in certain circles) in my many years on this earth, in many, many varied social situations, I have never met anyone who didn’t look forward to participating in the sweaty, mood altering, mind blowing, adrenaline filled , toe curling act of coitus. If they don’t, they’re obviously not doing it right!

As a disclaimer here, I fully admit to choking up during Hallmark Christmas movies and any other cinematic marvel that has a happy ending. Wherever the underdog prevails, (of if there’s a dog involved) I’ll be reaching for the tissue box.

On that same note, I have sadly accepted the fact that I’m not the premiere writing sensation of our time. However, I’d like to think the sentiment and feelings I try to put into words does manage to shine through for many. The intimacy I write into my stories, in my humble opinion, is intended to deepen the emotion of the scene and spark a certain something in the reader; drawing them intimately closer to the character I’m trying to depict. It’s never done to shock and awe. My days of spewing the dirty word in the classroom to gain admiration from my classmates never ended well for me. As a matter of fact, my name was mentioned across many dinner tables back in my blue word phase, followed by parental edicts to steer clear of that kid! I was a highly misunderstood child.

More to the point, writing and reading erotica is not a crime. And while I realize that it is often depicted as the cause of depravity, lewd acts and the ruination of society from many Sunday morning pulpits, I think it’s fair to say the occasional voyeuristic readings into the sex lives of characters conjured up in the minds of erotica writers will not buy you a ticket on the express train to eternal damnation.

And it may even spice up those snowy afternoons when you’d just planned on reading a book. (wink wink)

Whip out those debt cards, read the latest terms of agreement on PayPal, visit Smashwords and take that final step into what the puritans call our seedy underbelly and proudly take advantage of your right to buy and read a steamy piece of erotica. It might even give you a few new ideas on spicing up your love life.

Until next time, and as always, I wish you peace, happiness and fair winds.

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