‘Ladies and rocking horses ... I’ve been asked to say a few words. Unfortunately, I don’t have a few words, because I used them all up writing an article about this museum.’
That's one of my protagonists speaking, after he's had a few in chapter 17. Hmm ... maybe I'd better reclaim the mic.
Ladies and gentlemen, I present a novel that is very me. I don't mean that simply in the sense that its content is entirely authored by me (as opposed to an anthology). What I mean is that I wrote the book I really wanted to write, and I wrote it by drawing on my own peculiar—heheh, I mean particular—literary sensibilities.
As those of you who have been down this road know, it's kind of scary putting yourself out there like that ... but I feel good about it. It felt right to me when I put the ready-to-submit kiss on the manuscript, and it feels right to me holding the book in my shaky hands.
It's a quirky book, and I think that's as it should be. I wrote a book that no one else would have written. That's one of the things I value the most about being a writer, and also about the writing of others—of all you fellow writers: the individual approach.
So what kind of book did I write, with my individual approach? I wrote a madcap erotic romp, a story of a waggish man and woman (and friends) bantering and shagging their way through a lighthearted, whimsical plot. I wrote a novel in which sensuality and repartee, eros and comedy, go hand in hand. I wrote a book in which the protagonists get in a lot of not-very-serious trouble and have a lot of verbal, physical, and emotional fun.
It's a novel, so the plot had to be "big." This of course meant the structure and pacing had to be different from those found in my short stories. I think the tone is even somewhat different from that of any of my short pieces—because this element is probably, to some extent, dependent on the other elements. It feels nice to reflect that this work is not just a larger animal than the others I've created, but also to some extent a different animal. [Insert animal noises, to taste.]
I'm a guy for whom funny and sexy is a potent combination. Some of my favorite old movies are zany comedies that plunge the protagonists into comical situations that sizzle with their sexual chemistry and simmer with their lust. Frequently, the pair spend most of the film in some kind of antagonistic relationship—that's the "screwball comedy" template, and it's a damn fine one. But it doesn't always have to play out that way.
I wanted my protagonists to operate as a team from the start. This meant that the plot motivations, suspense, etc., had to come largely from outside the relationship. And, given my inclinations, this meant relying on the farcical complications of frivolous intrigue and the interpersonal twists and friction provided by supporting characters. I had such a good time!
And I had such a good time leading them through the scenes we don't see in old movies: the scenes where they fuck. And fuck. And fuck.
Because, after all, this is erotica first and foremost, whatever else it may be. And I'm proud to say that.
Rock My Socks Off features representatives of what I personally find to be some sexy professions: scientists; academics; writers (yay!); visual artists. Also museum people—though the museum person in this book is actually not a sexy specimen, in my view. (That's by design; but if any among you find this character sexy, you go!) Some professions that got left out, but which are also on my "sexy" list, are librarians, theater people, and bar/restaurant staff.
Of course, individuals aren't defined by their careers, and people can be sexy, to themselves and to others, in any walk of life—and I sincerely hope they are. But speaking for myself, there are undeniably certain professions that spark my erotic imagination—that prompt me to envision alluring, fascinating, enchanting, sexually electric people. (And, as you can see from the list above, one of the elements that strongly contributes to that for me is intellectual/artistic passion.)
So ... I'm wondering what professions are sexy to you, and why—and, if you write, where and how you've used them in your work. Tell me all about it in the comments, and a randomly selected commenter will receive a free copy of—did you guess it?—Rock My Socks Off!
Oh, before we get to the best part—i.e., you—let me just review the RMSO "basics." (It wouldn't be much of a book-release party without the basics, would it?)
[Hmm ... should I try out Blogger's bulleted-list tool? Nah—that's sure to be asking for trouble.]
> Rock My Socks Off is now available from the publisher, wonderful Xcite Books. Xcite is based in the UK but will ship anywhere in the world.
> Many online and brick-and-mortar UK booksellers are stocking RMSO, and the book is also offered by online retailers in a number of other countries. An extensive list of places to buy can be found at my website.
> The official North American release of RMSO will occur later this year. Stay tuned!
> Speaking of "tuned": Have you checked out my "Rock My Socks Off" ditty? (Look for the AudioPal widget on the sidebar here, directly beneath the RMSO cover.)
> The official description of the book? Glad you asked:
Writer Jacob Hastings is uninspired by his latest assignment: a museum full of hideous rocking horses. But his socks are rocked by Normandie Stephens, a mischievous astronomer who can match his dry wit, quip for quip, and his sexual appetite, frolic for frolic, with energy to spare.
Thanks to Jacob’s public relations and the machinations of a feisty and frisky mentor named Kate, an impasse in Normandie’s career promises to blossom into either glory or disaster—with enigmatic photographer Susan and obtuse clubber Brandon along for the wild rocking-horse ride. Between farcical talk show appearances, sensuous threesomes, horny little quickies, sex-drenched romantic getaways, and close calls with utter embarrassment, the pace never lets up in this smart erotic romp.> I'll be hitting the virtual road soon with a couple of excerpts/guest blogs! Watch this space for details of my upcoming appearances at Roxanne's Realm (this Thursday!) and M. Christian's Frequently Felt.
Thanks for joining me today to celebrate!
[Real-time note: I'm uploading this right before going to sleep, so my friends in the UK and points east can wake up to a breakfast party. I'll rejoin the party in the U.S.A. A.M.! : )]