What is ‘show don’t tell’?

I understand there is a rare breed of author out there that actually understands exactly what is meant when they are told ‘show don’t tell’. I’m not one of them. I often struggle with this and it’s a work in progress, but I am comforted by the knowledge that I don’t suffer alone in this ongoing struggle to ‘show’, rather than narrate. It wasn’t until I started this challenge that I began to really look at the problem, and talk to other authors who were struggling with it as well. I am by no means perfect when it comes to exercising this concept within my own work. Like I said, it’s a work in progress. However, I do know a few basics and so I thought I’d share those here.

#1: Can you identify when you’re telling instead of showing?

There is nothing more disheartening than building up the courage to show your story to someone and have them say, ‘It’s really pretty good… except all those places when you show instead of tell.” Especially if you have no idea what they’re talking about. So, what does ‘show don’t tell’ even mean and how can you identify when you’re doing it wrong?

Anton Chekov not only said it best, but he said it in a way I could finally grasp.

Break this quote down and what it teaches you is that every time you write ‘The moon shone’, you are telling. Never say ‘The moon shone over the city’ when you can say ‘Eerie silver-white moonlight lit the wet city streets, making the puddles glisten and the shadows cast by crates, cars and boxes that much darker.’ Showing deepens the mood of your scene. Telling is just… there. Why say ‘It was windy’ when you could say ‘A whispering breeze tugged at the folds of her skirt and played in the auburn curls of her hair’? Or, ‘Dry withered leaves shivered in the tree tops, letting loose their clawing branches to rain tumbling down across the lawn.’

#2: Feel/Felt is always telling when you use it to expression emotion.

When I hit the end of every first draft, the first thing I do is a Find and Replace, searching up words I tend to overuse and this is also where I start looking for feel and felt. If it’s not talking about sensation, find another way to say it.

#3 Okay, it took me a LONG time to get a grip on this. So, on the off chance that someone else also needs another couple examples, here you go. These are a few ways to SHOW emotion, rather than to TELL it.

#4 The magic of body language.

Body language can say everything if you use it right.  Admittedly, it does require a bit more thought than simply saying, ‘Bob was sad.’

#5 Use your senses.

When it comes to showing how your characters are feeling, the senses are your best friends. Stick with one or two. It shouldn’t take paragraphs to describe an emotion. If you’re using more than a sentence or two, you need to trim it down. Also, if you use the same senses each and every time, you lose some of the descriptive depth you’re trying to build. So mix it up. Balance means using as many as you can in various ways, without your WIP reading like your going down… well, this list.

For something that took me years to grasp, it literally comes down to one line: If the emotion is the descriptor, chances are you’re telling. If the senses are the descriptor, that’s showing and that’s what you want.

Is ‘Said’ Really Dead?

I read an article yesterday that claimed use of the word ‘said’ is dead. For some reason, authors are being encouraged to steer clear of it’s usage and turn instead to other words that might better describe how whatever is being said. For instance, whisper describes how the speaker is talking. Bellowed not only describes tone, but also the character’s mood. Therefore, the article seemed to be advocating the death of ‘said’, which is a non-descriptor, by enriching your writing through the use of other dialogue tags. Meme lists abound all over google that provide 200+ words that could be used instead of plain, ol’ said. Because said is dead.

Well, I am writing this to say SAID is NOT dead. In fact, if you follow that advice, you run a serious risk of creating a novel that reads like a 1950s Dick Tracy comic book. Meaning, campy and over-the-top,  a work that no one reading it would take seriously. Sorry, Harvey Comics. Not sorry, to whomever authored that incredibly bad piece of advice. In fact, not only am I not sorry, but you owe every reader who bought into that horrible statement a Coke and an apology.
Said is NOT dead. Yes, you should keep that list of 200+ other ways to say SAID handy and use it SPARINGLY as a way to enrich your story by turning your dialogue tags into descriptions on your character’s tone and emotions. Did you notice my use of the word ‘sparingly’ up there? That’s because I personally believe that roughly 70% of your dialogue should include a dialogue tags (and yes, I did just pull that percentage out of my ass) and only 70% of that should be SAID. Why?
  • Because if you don’t use SAID and only use descriptors, then your book will read as if it were written for angsty teenagers, by an angsty teenager without any grasp on how real emotions work or how to incorporate them into their WIPs.
  • Because when a reader is lost in a story, their eye will pass right over SAID, but still cue in on the important stuff: what is being said and who is saying it.
  • Because sometimes characters just need to talk, damn it, without all the fripperies that can bog down a dialogue scene.

Let me give you an example:

Example One:

“I hate coming up with examples,” she announced.

“I know,” he commiserated. “But, sometimes it’s necessary.”

“To who?” she exclaimed. “Who’s even going to read this?”

“Oh,” he chuckled. “I’m sure you’ll get one or two readers.”

“Bet I don’t,” she complained.

“Besides,” he continued, “you’re making a point. Points should be made whether anyone reads it or not.”

She scoffed. “You’re just saying that because you’re a sadist and you get sick enjoyment out of making me do things I don’t like to do.”

“No,” he drawled. “I’m saying it because it’s true.” He smirked. “Being a sadist does make it more fun, though.”

Okay, I’m lousy at examples, but you get the point. It reads clunky and all the expostulating is ridiculous. In a normal story, you wouldn’t use a dialogue tag every time your character speaks, but if you use nothing but descriptor tags, your entire book will read this way.

However, swap it around. You can kind of see what the author of ‘said is dead’ was trying to say.

Example Two:

“I hate coming up with examples,” she said.

“I know,” he said. “But, sometimes it’s necessary.”

“To who?” she asked. “Who’s even going to read this?”

“Oh,” he chuckled. “I’m sure you’ll get one or two readers.”

“Bet I don’t,” she said.

“Besides,” he said, “you’re making a point. Points should be made whether anyone reads it or not.”

She scoffed. “You’re just saying that because you’re a sadist and you get sick enjoyment out of making me do things I don’t like to do.”

“No,” he said. “I’m saying it because it’s true.” He smirked. “Being a sadist does make it more fun, though.”

If you only use SAID (apart from the obvious deviations), then it can still ruin an otherwise decent dialogue exchange. So, if SAID is not dead, how then should it be used? In my opinion, these are the rules that authors should follow when using dialogue tags:

  • If it’s not a question, use SAID.
  • Does a descriptor need to be used? If yes, use a descriptor (whispered, breathed, scoffed, laughed, yelled, etc…). If no, use SAID.
  • Is a dialogue tag necessary at all? Are there more than two people involved in the conversation? If yes, don’t go more than two lines (and by line, I mean switching back and forth between speakers, not sentences) without a dialogue tag. It quickly becomes difficult for readers to keep straight who’s saying what. If no, use dialogue tags sparingly.
  • Can you use an action instead of a dialogue tag? If yes, don’t use SAID or anything else, use the action instead. People almost never just stand around talking. Your book is a movie in the head of the reader. Let your characters move.

Example Three:

“I hate coming up with examples,” Jill said.

“I know.” Sorting through the mail, Ben kept two and dropped the rest in the trash. “But, sometimes it’s necessary.”

“To who? Who’s even going to read this?”

He chuckled. “Oh, I’m sure you’ll get one or two readers.”

Pouting, she scowled. “Bet I don’t.”

“Besides, you’re making a point. Points should be made whether anyone reads it or not.”

She scoffed. “You’re just saying that because you’re a sadist and you get sick enjoyment out of making me do things I don’t like to do.”

“No, I’m saying it because it’s true.” He smirked and swatted her for no reason other than the tactile pleasure of her butt in his hand. “Being a sadist does make it more fun, though.”

 

 

Welcome Guest Author Ashe Barker

I’m always on the lookout for authors I haven’t read before, and this looks like a good one. 🙂 It’s already out and available on Amazon, so there is no waiting. But it has one of the BEST spanking threats I’ve yet read. I love, love, LOVE spanking threats.

“Allow me to be plain since I wish there to be no misunderstanding between us. You are coming with me. You will be silent, and you will be co-operative. If you cause me no problems we shall get along quite well, but I will tolerate no disobedience from you. You have been warned. Further attempts to thwart me will result in you being punished, and a decent switching will be just the start of it. Do not test me on this, Brynhild. You will regret it.”

Her Celtic Captor by Ashe Barker

 

Blurb:

As the sister of a powerful Viking chief, Brynhild Freysson is used to giving orders and having them obeyed, which makes it all the more difficult to accept when she suddenly finds herself at the mercy of a Celtic warrior intent on bringing her back to his village whether she likes it or not.

Taranc was a leader of his people before he was taken captive by Viking raiders, and now that he is a free man once more he has no intention of allowing a headstrong Norse woman to slow down his journey home with her stubborn disobedience. When Brynhild refuses to do as she is told, he wastes no time in baring her bottom for a thorough switching, and he makes it quite clear that she can expect even more painful and humiliating punishments if she continues to defy him.

Though her hatred of the Celts runs deep, Taranc’s stern dominance awakens desires in Brynhild that she thought she would never feel again, and when he takes her in his arms and claims her properly it is more pleasurable than she would have thought possible. But though her passion for him grows by the day, can she ever truly love a man whose people are enemies of her own?

Publisher’s Note: Her Celtic Captor is a stand-alone sequel to Her Rogue Viking and Her Dark Viking. It includes spankings and sexual scenes. If such material offends you, please don’t buy this book

Excerpt:

With his free hand he swept the length of her pale blonde hair back from her face and offered her a tight smile.

“Let me go. Do not touch me…” Her voice hitched, panic starting to bubble forth.

He had expected as much. Taranc softened his features. “You are safe, lady, apart from the whipping you have earned, naturally.”

Her eyes widened. “Wh-whipping. What do you intend to do?”

“We are at eight strokes, I believe, by my reckoning.” He glanced over his shoulder. “We shall use the mast, I think…”

“The mast? What? You cannot—”

It was time to be firm, to assert his authority if they were to have any peace on this voyage. “Lady, you do not command here. I do, and I have already warned you of the consequences if you disobey or otherwise vex me. Eight strokes. Now, get up.”

He released her wrists and rose to his feet. He did not miss the startled widening of her eyes when she found herself staring at his semi-erect cock, the darkening of her pupils as the implications of his arousal sank in. He could not help his response to her and was not about to apologise for it, but he did not need her to succumb to panic now. Taranc grinned at her as he retrieved the blanket and tied it around his waist again then offered her his hand to assist her up. She was not reassured. Brynhild shrank away from him, shaking her head. “No, please do not do this. I am sorry, I—”

“Up. Now.” The sudden evaporation of her previous belligerence was not lost on him. Neither was her shock at the sight of his erection but Taranc was not entirely convinced. He would not put it past her to dissemble, to seek to manipulate him even now. He deliberately hardened his tone. “You may submit willingly, or not, but the end will be the same.” He leaned down to offer his hand again.

Brynhild groped behind her for the blanket and managed to snag a corner of the fabric. She clasped it around her once more as she scrambled to her feet, ignoring his offer of assistance. Her chin tilted at a defiant angle as she glared at him, then eyed the mast with distaste. So much for her nervous apprehension and apparent contrition.

Taranc gestured to her to precede him to the mast where Eileifr waited with a length of narrow rope. Her steps slow, Brynhild did as he instructed, coming to a halt below the billowing sail. She looked up, then back over her shoulder at Taranc. “Shall I lean against it, then?”

“You will hug the mast, lady, and Eileifr if you would be so good as to secure her wrists? Not too tight, but we must be sure she will not shift at an inopportune moment.”

“That will not be necessary, I—”

“Eileifr.” At Taranc’s curt command the karl stepped forward and reached for Brynhild’s wrists. She stepped away from him, her eyes blazing.

“Keep your hands off me. I will not permit this.” She tucked her hands further within the folds of the blanket.

Taranc had heard enough. He leaned forward to murmur in her ear. “Ten, lady. And the count will increase with every act of defiance, every refusal to obey. Are you really so set on adding to your punishment? You will spend a great deal more time than you might care to imagine lashed to that mast if you do not have a care.”

Read Chapter 1 for free

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Words of Wisdom from Cara Bristol

This is for The Author’s 100 Days of Writing Challenge, because I couldn’t figure out how to get the links to all work in Facebook. Ain’t technology grand?

By Cara Bristol

You probably started writing because you had a hot idea that you couldn’t not write. You wrote from pure inspiration, pure joy, and you loved the experience.  Still buoyed, you decided to publish your completed manuscript.

And then writing, publishing, promotion became work. Some days you hate writing. The words won’t come. You’re not selling as many books as you think you should, and you see other authors writing similar stuff who seem to be farther ahead. You wonder if writing is worth it.

It’s often said at writer conferences that to become a success, you have to love writing. That’s 100 percent true. If you don’t love it, the process will wear you down, because success is a long, hard row.

Maren asked me to share some motivational words of encouragement. I hope she meant an ass-whoopin’ because that’s what I’m about to deliver.

Becoming a “successful” author takes time (years), and you’re going to have to work your butt off.

Being an author isn’t like working for an employer where you get paid for showing up, regardless of what happens there. Whether you are traditionally or indie published, when you are an author, you are self-employed, you are a business owner, you are an entrepreneur. If you don’t work, you don’t get paid. You are going to have to write when you don’t feel like it, when you don’t feel inspired. You are going to have to produce words whether you want to or not.

And I’m sorry, Buttercup, but writing represents only half of the job.

I’m talking about the dreaded P word: promotion. There are hundreds of thousands of ebooks and millions of print books on Amazon. The odds of anyone seeing your book without you actively promoting it are nil. Every job has its downside. Doctors, attorneys, teachers, nurses, librarians experience aspects they don’t like. You think promotion sucks? Try being a roofer in the middle of August or pumping septic tanks day after day.

I get frustrated when I hear authors say “I don’t promote because I’m an introvert, and it’s hard for me.” You’re a writer, aren’t you? Write a flippin’ promo post! You don’t have to talk to anybody. You don’t have to be an extrovert to blog, to  tweet, to buy an ad or to post on Facebook. If you’re such an introvert that you can’t communicate in an email, then writing is not the profession for you. There are many ways to promote a book. If you truly hate and dread a task, pick something else.

You will make mistakes in your publishing career. There will be setbacks and failures. Success will come two steps forward, one step back. And it will take far longer than you’d expected.

Other authors will seemingly zoom ahead of you, but you won’t be seeing the whole picture. Only their successes are visible. You don’t see the  mistakes (they’ve made them), their failures (trust me, they have them), the years it took to get to that point, the hours they spend every day, and the money they pour into advertising.

I got published in 2009, and I’ve written/published about 30 books. My first year published, I made $300. My second year, I made $800.  I didn’t start making any appreciable money until I published my third book and changed publishers in year three, and still didn’t earn anything close to a livable wage until 2014.

I’ve made a ton of mistakes. Sometimes I think I do more wrong than I do right. I wasn’t prolific enough in the early years. After starting a successful series (Rod and Cane) I switched gears and wrote a couple of standalones in different genres. I didn’t start my author newsletter soon enough. I wrote stories for anthologies that weren’t related to an existing work. Sometimes I released too many books too fast and flooded my own market. I’ve wasted time doing things “the old way,” not realizing that the market had changed or didn’t want to face the truth.

I’ve had to restrategize, relearn, retool, readjust. Just when I find something that works, it stops working. I’ve achieved a measure of success, but while it has gotten easier, it’s still not easy. As my author friend Lisa Medley says, “You can’t ever take your foot off the gas.” Cruise control is not an available option in publishing.

But I love what I do. Writing novels is my dream job. If I won the lottery, I would still write. There isn’t anything else in this entire world I would rather do.

So know that if you’re having a hard time getting ahead, congratulations! You’re in the norm! Be prolific, make quality a priority, strive to improve your craft, and work your ass off. Those are the secrets to success.
For more specific tips, refer to 12 Truths About Publishing.

Author Bio

USA Today bestselling author Cara Bristol writes steamy science fiction romance with an emphasis on the characters and their romance, with a little humor, heat, and danger added for fun. She is the author of three science fiction romance series: sexy cyborg Cy-Ops Scifi Romance series, the dark erotic Breeder series, and the new humorous Alien Mate series. She likes to say that she writes science fiction for readers who don’t like sci-fi.  Cara lives in Missouri with her alpha hero, her husband, and Hannah, her cat, aka her writing supervisor.

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33 FREE Books From Some of Your Favorite Kinky Authors!

Have you heard about the Sexee Reads MASSIVE Giveaway?

As the title says, over 30 of the industries kinkiest authors have come (…cum?…) together to bring you not just a sample of their work, not just a chapter or two, but an ENTIRE NOVEL! Yes, I’m in there too. And yes, I did it willingly, without having to be tied up and mercilessly flogged first. I would have joined faster had they offered, but maybe next year, right?

What do you have to do get in on this fantastic offer? (The books, not the floggings. I feel I need to be specific on that part.) Just click here to enjoy all the fabulous stories offered from now until August 12th. That’s right. This is a very limited offer. So get to clicking, explore new authors and fall in love with some super sexy heroes and the women who love to submit to them!

Oh, and if you feel like it, you can always sign up for my newsletter. I’m not promising I will ever put one out, but you will automatically be signed up to win free stuff there too. Just check out my newsletter tab at the top of this page.

Yes, I am still alive…

Yes, I am alive and yes, I am still writing. Lots of stuff happening in the ol’ personal life, but it’s starting to calm down now and I’m looking forward to finding out what the swing of my new normal is going to be like.

This blog has fallen so far out of date that it’s going to take a miracle to bring it current. Good thing for both of us that I’m so stubborn. It’ll get there eventually, but for now there are a ton of new things going on that you should know about. Before I start, however, take a look at the top of this page at that line of tabs marked: Home, About Me, My Blog, My Books, and… Newsletter. See that tab? Now, I know what you’re thinking. Not another newsletter. This one is different, I promise. I swear I will only use my authoring newsletter powers for good. Or whenever I’m about to release a new story and there’s a corresponding giveaway that you might want to get in on. So, before you go any further, click on that tab and subscribe to my newsletter. Not do subscribers get a heads-up whenever one of my books gets published, but they are also automatically entered to win in any of my personal blog giveaways.

“What an incentive!” you cry.

I agree, and if you find you don’t like it, you can unsubscribe at any time. So, what do you have to lose? Nothing! What do you have to gain? Free books and other cool prizes in my giveaways!

Cools beans!! Go. Click on the tab. You know you want to. No, no. We’ll wait.

Back already? Awesome sauce! So, onto what’s new and interesting in my world…

First, yes, there will be a Masters of the Castle book released this year. Second, I am head over heels in love with my current WIP, a fun and funny sci-fi that has progressed far enough for me to send design pics to my cover artist. I am so excited to see what she comes up with! I’m not yet ready to post info on it yet, but if you’re curious, check back here next week. Sneak-A-Peek Tuesdays are about to become a thing here at the Bad Girl’s Corner.

Can’t wait, huh? Well, you are in luck, because an author friend of mine has just published her latest book! What could be more irresistible than a hot and sexy story about a female submissive being brought to heel via the whims of a her dominant alien lover? If you just said “Two dominant alien lovers,” then we are peas in a pod.

The Renegade’s Reward by USA Bestselling author Maddie Taylor has just been released and there is zero waiting required to enjoy this red-hot spanking menage!

Captured by space pirates and held for ransom, her time has run out. Moments from being sold at auction, rescue comes in the form of two smoking hot alien heroes.

Blurb:

Devastated by tragedy, they left everything behind.

Now, they will fight any foe, take any risk, for a price. 

Hired to rescue a rich man’s daughter, mercenaries Jaylin and Malik Sin-Naysir, are captivated by the auburn haired, green-eyed innocent they are duty-bound to protect. Although determined to bring her home untouched, their desire for her is intense, the connection undeniable. Could it be she has the power to heal their wounded hearts?

Daniella Alltryp lives in the lap of luxury, but under the thumb of her dictatorial father her life is a cold, isolated existence. That ends in two weeks when she turns twenty-five and gains control of her trust fund. She’s counting the minutes until she’s free!

Her father has other plans, including an arranged marriage to an alien prince, using her to further line his pockets. Daniella will have none of it.  While returning home to confront him, she is captured by space pirates and held for ransom.  Except time has run out, and her tight-fisted father refuses to pay.  Moments from being sold at auction, rescue comes in the form of two gorgeous aliens.

Tall, powerful, and innately dominant, both men make her heart melt and her panties damp.  Neither has trouble demanding what they want from her, or holding her bare backside accountable for any mischief she makes.  But they aren’t what they seem. Secrets are revealed as their deception unravels.   Can Dani forgive their betrayal and take a chance on loving them both?   And, can Malik and Jaylin move on from the tragedy in their past to finally claim their reward, and make Dani their own?

 

Publisher note:   The Renegades’ Reward is a stand-alone erotic romance novel that contains sexual scenes and spanking. If this subject matter offends you, please don’t buy this book.

 

Excerpt:

“Daniella!” Jaylin’s roar eclipsed the pounding of his boots and all the alarms combined. “What the fuck have you done to my ship?”

“Does it matter, right now? We’re on fire,” she screeched.

But his question, apparently rhetorical, didn’t require an answer. His hands encircled her waist and he lifted her, bodily moving her out of his way. Then he hit a yellow button on the wall which made the lights dim and the console blink off. Next, he bent and retrieved a fire extinguisher from a low cupboard nearby—one she hadn’t seen. He aimed it at the console, and, after dispensing a cloud of an orange powdery substance, the fire was out.

For a moment, he stood still, his shoulders back, and his spine rigid as if forged in steel.

“You better run and hide if you know what’s good for you,” Malik whispered in her ear.

She jumped, not having heard him come up in the commotion. Taking his advice, she whirled, following a direct path to the lift. The only trouble, Jaylin had finished perusing the mess she’d made. His glare hit her like daggers piercing her skin. With a sudden change of plans, she veered right, toward the ladder.

Four feet from the round hole in the floor, and ready to dive head first through it, his roar stopped her in her tracks.

“Don’t you dare take another step,” he bellowed.

She chanced a glance back and saw his utterly livid face, eyes glittering with fury, nostrils flared. His mouth a thin slash in his bearded face—something new from the day before—and his jaw was held so tight she thought it might break.

“I’m so sorry,” she whispered.

His hand came up, palm out. Wisely, she remained silent.

When he spoke again, long moments later, his voice held an icy chill. “I’m too furious to even ask what the hell you were doing up here in the middle of the night. But it doesn’t matter. There is no excuse for this.” He swept his arm toward the destruction.

“I—”

“Silence,” he ordered tersely. “This cannot go unpunished.”

She sucked in a ragged breath, and nodded. Whatever he decreed: keelhauled, boiled in oil, strung up by her toes, she deserved. His sentence, however, stunned her.

“Malik, take her downstairs, put her in her room, and lock the door. And, before you leave her to think about what she’s done, that she may not have merely crippled the ship with this stunt, but could have very well stranded us in the middle of nowhere vulnerable to whatever lowlife parasites might happen across our path—”

“Jaylin, please let me explain,” she cried in desperation, but he continued as if she hadn’t spoken.

“Spank her mischievous little ass, and make every swat count. Fifty should do for a start.”

“Fifty!” she squealed at the same time Malik shouted, “Spank Dani?”

Then, they replied in unison, “No way!”

He ignored them both and went right on issuing orders. “Once you’re done, send her to a corner to wait for me. I’ll join you to give her the rest when I get this cleaned up and fix whatever components she has fried. And,” he added further, “I want her hands on her head, her spanked ass on display when I walk in.”

Like what you’ve just read? Get your copy today!

Buy Links:

Amazon: http://ow.ly/qGmR30dFw0Z
Apple iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1260182009
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About the Author

A USA Today and #1 international bestselling author, Maddie is a lifelong reader who became a romance junkie as a teen with her first romance novel, The Wolf and the Dove by Kathleen Woodiwiss. From then on, she was hooked, and gobbled up everything she could get her hands on, whether contemporary, historical, paranormal, or sci-fi. If there was romance to be found between a strong alpha male, and a sassy, adventurous and oft-times defiant yet loving woman, Maddie was all over it. As an author, she stays true to those themes writing steamy erotic romance, with a side of kink, and adding elements of intrigue, danger, and suspense to her plots.

Maddie started writing as a hobby. Her stories stayed private while she raised a family and worked full-time as a registered nurse. It wasn’t until 2012 that she decided to take the plunge and submit her first book for publication: Captain My Captain. She went on to publish eleven novels the first year.

She’s still juggling writing with her day job. You’ll find her working at her laptop into the wee hours of the morning, or scribbling plot ideas into the notebook she always keeps handy, and working out the details of a scene while floating around in her pool with a lemon drop in hand. Don’t be surprised if you see her pulling over on the side of the road, searching frantically for pen and paper to capture an idea for a scene that popped into her mind, because as Maddie says, her best ideas always come when her hands are full or if there isn’t a pen in a five-mile radius.

 

Keep up with Maddie at the following links:

Maddie’s Blog

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Maddie’s Website

 

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Three M’s News

 

Getting Closer….

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I love the look of this man. He’s exactly what I envision as the perfect Dom for my next story, Binding Brinley. He’s been my muse, and I guess it’s been working because I’m 49k words into a novel that was only supposed to be around 30k to start with. Help! I’m writing and I can’t shut up!

Oh, what the hell, right? So long as it makes for a better story. What do you think? Do you want to see more of this story, or less? lol

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“Take my offer,” he cajoled.

“And if I don’t?”

He shrugged with his expression alone. “Then you don’t. There will be no punishment. For that.”

Something in his tone caught her ear. “For that?”

“After supper,” Rowth promised. “After Rog has settled for the night, then you and I will take our first trip down into the cellar together. I told you what would happen if you misbehaved. Actions have consequences, Brinley. Tonight, you will learn exactly what my consequences entail.”

Her sex convulsed, quivering under the shuddering strains of yet another orgasm. First with stripes of my belt and then with a hard, disciplinary fuck. That was what he had threatened. That was what he was going to do to her and, God help her, just the thought of it was enough to make her want to come all over again.
 69a20087e44d223bda63b6bb9952757e
Let’s keep the coffee and the momentum flowing! If I keep going like this, I should hopefully be ready to send this to the editors and the beta readers in two more weeks. Tentative publishing schedule is for this to go live somewhere around the end of March, and will be the first in a set of 5 books by fellow authors Dinah McLeod, Renee Rose, Megan Michaels and Kate Richards. Woot!

And just FYI, this post would not have taken anywhere near as long to write, nor would it have been even half this frustrating, had I not been non-consensually forced to the bottom of a rambunctious kitten pile. Seriously, I’ve thrown Danny off my chest no less than 20 times. I’m shoving kittens back with one hand and stealing sips of my coffee with the other. If either one would just lie here quietly by or on me, I could still get some work done, but no. I’ve got two hands and two kittens, so get to petting, lazy human.
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If baleful glares could write a book, this story would be finished by the end of the day.

Ask yourself… Is this socially acceptable?

Okay, I get it. I write what I write and that (apparently) makes me an open target for those who have trouble distinguishing not just fantasy from reality, but what is and is not socially acceptable behavior when you are reaching out to someone you don’t freakin’ know.

I know. It can be a tricky thing, and I know it’s going to come as a surprise to a lot of people, but there is a difference between behaving like a true dominant and behaving like the world’s biggest asshat, who thinks nothing at all of inserting him or herself into another person’s (ie: my) life and/or lifestyle without being invited.

Now is the time, dear reader, to do some serious soul searching. Do you have difficulty figuring out where the ‘boundaries’ are when you’re introducing yourself to someone new? Maybe you don’t get out much and you just want a refresher course on what makes a person come across as either well-mannered or as Creepy McCreeperson on crack. Visually, do you know what that looks like? Let me show you:

1.) How people see a well-mannered person:

Rich macho man foreplay with lover holding whip bdsm

 

2.) How people see a Creepy McCreeperson:

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See the difference?

No, no. I get it. The struggle is real, but fear not! I have spent the morning coming up with a quick and easy quiz to help even the most socially inappropriate among us figure out 1.) that they are being asshats, and 2.) how they can identify those inappropriate moments while they can still fix and hopefully avoid them.

Remember: the first step to getting help is recognizing you have a problem. So, if there is any question in your mind as to where you stand on the Creepy scale, take this short quiz that I put together out of the IMs, texts and emails I’ve received within the last two weeks.

i-just-want

1.) How do you introduce yourself to someone you’ve never met or spoken to before?

a.) “Hi! I’ve been reading your posts on Facebook and I just wanted to say you made me smile today. I think you’re fun and funny and I hope you have a good day.”

b.) “Hello.” It’s short. It’s sweet. And it gives you a minute to figure out if you want to follow up with ‘How are you doing?’ or just jump straight to ‘Are you single?’

c.) “Here’s a picture of my penis.” Because everybody likes a good penis or cooter shot (I must have arrived, because I’m getting those now too).

 

If you answered:

a.) 0 points. Good job! Even though it looks like this conversation opened and closed without needing a reply from the object of your admiration, this is a good way to start to get to know someone. This kind of greeting is your best bet if you want to receive a favorable reply in return.

b.) 1 point. Asking someone if they are single in the same conversation that you use to announce your very existence is only appropriate in a bar or on Craigslist. You might as well start by saying, ‘Hey, wanna fuck?’ And if you just thought ‘Oh shoot, I should have opened with that’, then you just lost your point. Go immediately to the next answer.

c.) 10 points. Nobody wants to see a picture of your junk. Period. End of story. I don’t care how big or thick it is. It’s just a penis and, sadly, it’s attached to a Creepy person who enjoys ‘flashing’ people they don’t know. Streakers at sporting events get arrested for this. So do naked men in trench coats and the ‘press’ or ‘hang’ mooners doing their drive-bys. In real life, this sort of thing can land you anything from a fine to a mandatory stay at a government run facility where at any given moment you may find yourself re-enacting that infamous scene from Deliverance. Here’s a clue: You get to be Ned Beatty. It’s the stuff that can and should put people on the sex offenders’ registry for the rest of their lives. So here’s a novel thought: stop being an asshat. Put your pants back on and if you’re that freaking desperate and you can’t find a girl any other way, I hear warm apple pie makes a good substitute.

Appropriate thought process:

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Inappropriate thought process:

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Are you starting to see the creep factor here? No? Well, okay. Let’s continue on.

 

2.) So, you’ve introduced yourself and have received a favorable response back that encourages the conversation to continue. How do you proceed?

a.) I see that you’re an author/cover model/vice squad detective. I find that very interesting. If I wanted to see more of your work, how would I go about doing that?

b.) Do we live on the same continent and/or are you single?

c.) Want to see a picture of my dick?

 

If you answered:

a.) 0 points. Good job! People who are good conversationalists make an effort to get to know one another. Also, the hallmark of building lasting relationships includes having common interests.

b.) 1 point. This is a red flag for me. My assumption when people message me is one of two things: either I know you in real life or you’re a reader/author/fan of my work. If I know you in real life, then you already know these things, so automatically this question places you in the column of people I have never met. So, okay. Time zones being what they are, you might have a legitimate reason to want to know where in the world I’m at. It might be simple curiosity, even. But if we’ve never met and you’re asking my relationship status, that automatically makes me think you’re typing with one hand and choking the chicken with the other. Either way, you just took a giant step toward Creepyville.

c.) No, no, no. 10 points. Look, we just went over this. Okay, one more time. Put your pants back on and pay attention: No one wants to see your Man Johnson in his first ever formal photo set, not even if you dress him up in a little black coat, a tie, and a top hat. …Well, okay. I might want to see that. But no, seriously! Pictures of your dick do not impress me. Stop sending them. Period. Unless, of course, you absolute do want to send that pic to the vice squad detective. I’ll bake cookies for your trial.

Again, here’s some visual aids.

Appropriate thought process:

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Inappropriate thought process:

crazy-text

 

3.) If back and forth conversations have been going well, after a suitable length of time and if distance allows, maybe you’d like to meet face to face. What is a suitable length of time?

a.) 3+ months. Genuine relationships take time.

b.) A couple weeks. This is the age of instant gratification, after all. Everything moves fast these days.

c.) A couple hours. I have got to get this off pretty soon. My girlfriend is going to be home any minute.

 

If you answered:

a.) 0 points! Good answer. You’re the kind of guy who understands that a woman’s sexual attraction to a guy starts and ends with his personality. Everything else–height, weight, wealth, quantity of hair growing on his head as opposed to his back–all the rest of that is irrelevant if he’s fun and funny and the object of his budding affection can’t wait to talk to him. A good man or woman’s heart is 100% accessed through his or her mind. Court that first.

b.) 1 point. You want instant gratification? God gave you two hands and an internet full of porn for a reason.

c.) Oh please, like you have a girlfriend. 10 points. Stop lying.

Appropriate relationship escalation discussion:

moving-fast-auburn

Also the inappropriate relationship escalation discussion (depending on whether it was a genuine typo).

 

 

Last question.

4.) You think everything has been going so well that you’d really like to try meeting face to face. And who knows, maybe things will get physical the way you’ve been secretly hoping ever since you decided to text/IM/email in the first place. You say:

a.) “Want to meet in a public place? Maybe for coffee?”

b.) “If you have a car, I live alone/my roommate is out. Want to come over?”

c.) “What’s your address?”

 

If you answered:

a.), b.), or c.) 10 points. While miracles do happen and people sometimes meet out of the blue online and go on to have a real life together, if the only reason you started talking to them in the first place was because you wanted to ‘hit that’, then this is inappropriate. There are online hookup sites you could join to satisfy that need. Call an 800 number or find a chat room somewhere. Those are appropriate outlets for that kind of thing. Harassing someone because you’re not getting enough satisfaction from masturbating to their picture is not.

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Dominating an experienced submissive was fun. Dominating an innocent was delicious.

The confidentiality of Black Light may protect Khloe from the paparazzi, but who will protect her from the devastatingly handsome, yet dangerous, Dom she’s been paired with?

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There’s still time if you haven’t signed up for the Black Light giveaway! Follow this link for a chance to win a free Kindle Fire or a $30 Amazon gift card.

Black Light is the brainchild of the fabulous Livia Grant. She and Jennifer Bene have been the huge driving force that got this series off the ground, out of our brains and into the reading device you love to curl up with whenever you have a stolen moment to spend reading your favorite BDSM authors. It’s been a long, fun road, and it’s all due to the hard work of these two lovely ladies. Thank you for allowing us to play in your world.

 

Blurb for Revealed

Actress Khloe Monroe’s life is spinning out of control. Surrounded by millions of fans, but she’s never felt more alone. When she seeks out an old friend, Chase Cartwright, she doesn’t expect his advice to be signing up for a daring game of Valentine Roulette in his secretive BDSM club.

CIA agent Ryder Helms doesn’t play at anything in life, especially sex.  He’s a sadist and a dominant to his core, so when the roulette wheel pairs him with the stunning actress, Khloe Monroe, a BDSM newbie, he’s surprised to find she’s the best gift he’s received in a long time. Dominating an experienced submissive was fun. Dominating an innocent was delicious.

The confidentiality of Black Light may protect Khloe from the paparazzi, but who will protect her from the devastatingly handsome, yet dangerous, Dom she’s been paired with?

revealed_promo1

Excerpt for Revealed

Khloe had never felt so alive. It was like every cell of her body was on high alert, ready to do her master’s bidding.  It was ridiculous, really.  Who the fuck did he think he was? They’d known each other all of thirty minutes, so it was ridiculous to recognize she hadn’t felt this level of intimacy with anyone ever before.  The novelty of it made her brave enough to see where it would take her.

He’d assured her he’d stop if she cried out red and, despite his harsh treatment, she believed him.  And while she was under no delusion that Chase had any romantic feelings for her, she knew he wouldn’t let anything truly dangerous happen to her.  Those were the only reasons she was able to get her excited breathing under control.

His name was Ryder.  Her eyes tracked him as he moved around the perimeter of the room, collecting up any number of diabolical items he planned to use on her body.  There was something about him that fascinated her.  She couldn’t put her finger on it, but she suspected it had to do with the fact that he was the first person in a long time whom she felt wasn’t interested in her as an actress.  He didn’t seem to care about how much money she made or how famous she was.  As fucked up as the game they were playing was, it felt real.

There were very few things in her life that she could say that about.

Before they really got started, a loud commotion could be heard across the club as a woman screamed, “Fucking red, you bastard!” at the top of her lungs.  She turned, trying to see what was happening. Even from the distance, she recognized the last couple to be matched. Congressman Masterson and his ex-wife were not doing too well with their Pet Play kink.

Ryder raised an eyebrow when she looked back at him. “I’d stay focused on your own predicament if I were you, little girl.”

She suspected that was good advice.

Khloe tugged at her restraints, testing to see if she had any wiggle room and strangely relieved when she found little.  He’d left her lying flat, thankfully, as she didn’t want to see the growing crowd that had gathered around inside the doorway and even the cutout window, supplied so voyeurs could watch the famous actress be dominated by the scariest of the roulette dominants.

Her bubble of self-confidence burst when he approached between her legs and held up what looked like a sharp scalpel.  Survival instincts kicked in and she did her best to flail in her bonds, fighting to be free.

“That’s it, baby.  Try to fight me.  I love it.”  Holy shit if she didn’t see the truth in his eyes as he held the sharp implement closer for her to get a good look.

“Sonofabitch,” she cried out.

“That’s one.  I’m Master or Sir.  Any other names will earn you a punishment. Now, I’d hold still if I were you.”

“I don’t like this!” she countered.

“There are no rules that say you have to like anything. You just have to obey.”

Her struggles were fruitless, but she didn’t stop until he volleyed a few sharp swats to her exposed inner thighs with his palm.  The embarrassment was worse than the pain.

“You’re a real prince, you know that?”

“Oh baby, don’t I know it.” He moved around next to her and reached out to pull up the fabric of her bra between her boobs. He waited until she looked into his eyes to reply.  “Here’s the thing. You have princes chasing you daily, yet you’re at Black Light, looking for something you can’t even name. Now, hold perfectly still unless you want to turn this into a blood play scene.”

Khloe held her breath while she felt him brush the dull edge of the scalpel across her skin just before situating it at her bra and pulling up to let the blade slice through the lace.  The tension now released, the fabric flew apart, exposing her mounds and protruding nipples to her captor.  He took his time admiring her, reaching to cup her bare breast, pinching the tight tip between his thumb and middle finger until she moaned.

She knew her panties would come off next, but the Dom used the electronic controls on the diabolical table to first move the head of the table upright, bending her at the tummy and also allowing the crowd to now witness her expressions.  The only saving grace was that the spotlight above the table was bright enough to make it difficult to see out into the audience.  She needed to pretend they weren’t there. Instead, she turned her attention back to the man now standing between her widely spread legs.  There was open lust in his eyes that made her feel powerful.

“Hold still,” he ordered.  She complied, wanting him to draw blood even less than he did.

Her panties fell away, ruined, leaving her completely bare.  A palpable electric charge zinged in the air as his gaze devoured her bare pussy.

“What a shame. You’re already bald.  I was looking forward to shaving you before your examination.”  He let his fingers brush through her folds, coming into the lightest of contact with her clit.  Christ, if only he’d pay attention there a bit longer, she’d be a puddle of goo.  Instead, he yanked his hand away before she could enjoy it.  She groaned in frustration.

“Lucky for you, I have extensive experience with medical examinations.  Well, medical torture to be more precise.”

 

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Are you ready for the next addition to Livia Grant and Jennifer Bene‘s fabulous new Black Light series? On February 10th, eight fabulous authors–Renee Rose, Livia Grant, Jennifer Bene, Addison Cain, Lee Savino, Sophie Kisker, Measha Stone, and Maren Smith–bring you one unforgettable night of kinky, sexy fun!

Blurb:

Three hours. Four hard limits. Eight sexy stories.

Get ready to explore some of your naughtiest desires while you celebrate Valentine’s Day with eight kinky stories from eight USA Today and international bestselling authors! Black Light is the most exclusive BDSM club in Washington, D.C. and for one night they’re changing the rules of play to entertain their members with a game of chance – Valentine Roulette. Challenge and adventure awaits as these sexy dominants spin to win their submissives, and the subs spin to choose how they will play. Their prize if they last the night? One free month at Black Light, and for some of our daring participants… even a chance at love.

Are you brave enough to spin the wheel?

Get your copy of Black Light: Valentine Roulette anthology here! Available on Amazon now!

She never dreamed she’d be paired with her ex.

One sub and one Dom play a game of chance–but Dane’s playing for Keeps. Will the odds be in his favor?

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There’s still time if you haven’t signed up for the Black Light giveaway! Follow this link for a chance to win a free Kindle Fire or a $30 Amazon gift card.

Measha Stone was another author that I’d not read before I was invited to join in this boxed set. It’s always so much fun when you get to sample the work of an author you’ve never tried before.

Get your copy of Black Light: Valentine Roulette anthology here! Available on Amazon now!

 

Blurb for Bared:

Riley can’t remember the last time she played with a Top she couldn’t manipulate. That’s the problem. She wants something more than topping from the bottom, and she’s convinced herself that the Valentine Roulette event is the place to find it.

But when she’s paired up with her ex, her confidence waivers. Dane knows her too well, has been watching her for months, and he’s not going to give up this time. Will he be able to breach that wall she’s been building since she ran out on him all those years ago? Or will she run again, lose the game, and her chance at love?

bared_promo1

Excerpt for Bared:

With a light shove, he let go of her hair and stood in front of her, again appraising her. “I’ve always loved your tits, Riley.” He cradled them in his hands, assessing the weight of them. “Nice and heavy. Do they take a nice beating?”  One more thing on the list of things he’d wanted to try, but she’d been afraid. What if she had liked it? What would that have meant for them? “I asked you a question, girl. Answer me.”  He slapped her hip.

She caught herself before losing her balance and glared at him.

His response to her expression came swiftly. “If you get off the chair, you’ll get a whipping. In front of everyone. You’ll have to tell them all you didn’t obey, you didn’t listen and ask them to watch your punishment. That’s what’s going to happen if you don’t follow directions.”

“You almost knocked me off,” she snapped, righting her position to get her balance back.

His arm wrapped around her while he positioned himself to her side, keeping her front side exposed but secured on the chair. A volley of hard slaps to the front of her thighs had her dancing in his grasp and yelping. “Your job is to stay put. If you can’t do that, then you’ll be begging for an audience to watch your belting.”

“Okay!” She squeezed her eyes shut and calmed her breathing. No way she could do that. Having an audience for a punishment was one thing, having to handpick that audience would be too much.

“Good.” His palms ran over her thighs, soothing away the burn. “Now. Teasing. That’s your favorite thing, so we’ll start there.” He plucked a black marker from his back pocket and uncapped it. “Don’t worry pretty girl, it’s washable. I wouldn’t want to mark this beautiful skin for too long.”

The chilled tip of the marker pressed into her skin. Dragging the marker one way then the other across her chest, she had a good idea of what he was doing. But he didn’t leave her in the dark either.

Once done, he stepped back and looked at his handy work. “Perfect.” He didn’t recap the marker though. “Do you want to know what I wrote?”

“No, sir.” She swallowed. Hearing him say it, confirming it, wouldn’t make it easier.

“Sure you do, but you’re afraid. No worries, I’m going to tell you anyway.” He pressed a fingertip to the marking and checked his finger. “All dry.” A grin pulled at his lips. “T-E-A-S-E.” He traced each letter with his fingertip as he spelled out the word. Her chest constricted, her breath caught, but she managed not to physically flinch.

Riley noticed a few girls walking past them pointing at her. They smiled, and the tall blonde in the middle giggled. Heat crawled up her neck and over her face. Calling her a tease was one thing, but now he’d labeled her – tagged her for everyone in the dungeon to see.

 

Meet the Author:

Measha Stone lives in the western suburbs of Chicago with her husband and three children. While working toward her degree in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University, she wrote mostly in the thriller genre, but her heart lies in Romance. BDSM Erotic Romance is where she lives and breathes, because what’s pleasure without a little pain?  When she’s not writing, she’s reading and goofing off with her kids.

www.meashastone.com

www.meashawrites.com/blog

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Don’t miss these exciting titles by Measha Stone!

Windy City Series

Hidden Heart

Secured Heart

Indebted Heart

Liberated Heart

A Spanking Good New Year (Anthology)

Protecting His Pet

 

16426135_696765453837155_6976615306357950515_n

Are you ready for the next addition to Livia Grant and Jennifer Bene‘s fabulous new Black Light series? Eight fabulous authors–Renee Rose, Livia Grant, Jennifer Bene, Addison Cain, Lee Savino, Sophie Kisker, Measha Stone, and Maren Smith–bring you one unforgettable night of kinky, sexy fun!

Get your copy of Black Light: Valentine Roulette anthology here! Available on Amazon now!

Blurb:

Three hours. Four hard limits. Eight sexy stories.

Get ready to explore some of your naughtiest desires while you celebrate Valentine’s Day with eight kinky stories from eight USA Today and international bestselling authors! Black Light is the most exclusive BDSM club in Washington, D.C. and for one night they’re changing the rules of play to entertain their members with a game of chance – Valentine Roulette. Challenge and adventure awaits as these sexy dominants spin to win their submissives, and the subs spin to choose how they will play. Their prize if they last the night? One free month at Black Light, and for some of our daring participants… even a chance at love.

Are you brave enough to spin the wheel?