Friday Filth: The Rebound List

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In preparation of Monday’s official launch, here’s a little snippet of something that happens early on in The Rebound List… 

Looking at him, despite the dimmed light of the theatre, still I feel a jolt run through me when our eyes meet. He runs his fingers through my hair again. Hoping this is going where I want it to, I look at his lips, so tempting. I want to taste him, right here and immediately.

His hand cups my cheek but he continues to just look as if asking for permission. Over-eager and impatient, of course I jump the gun and reach for him, planting a soft kiss on his lips. I feel his breath against me, his arms drawing me towards him closer.

He kisses me back. It’s a bit awkward at first but then our lips, tongues, our beings seem to be in tune. Every inch of me appears to sing with excitement. My eyes flick open and find his staring into me, smiling as I am.

I wrap my arm around his neck, my hand reaching for his hair now. It’s hard not to get carried away, after all, a cinema does not afford all that much privacy. But I suppose there’s no harm in indulging my impulses just a little.

Running my fingertips over his shirt, I enjoy the outlines of what I know to be underneath. Mystery is overrated. I have spent enough time looking at, no, studying his naked photographs to know what awaits me and frankly, that’s reassuring as well as arousing.

He doesn’t have this advantage though, until today he had only seen the bottom half of my face and my eyes and that too in black & white instead of colour. I kiss him with more energy, more passion and feel a moan travel over my lips. Was it mine or his? Does it even matter?

Suddenly aware of angry stares burning into us, I pause, biting my bottom lip and try to signal to make him aware of the grumpy man ahead of us. He continues to hold me, grinning back at me until I decide to turn and use him as a backrest; his arm draped across my front in a similar position as you’d keep a seatbelt in a car.

He seems to be enjoying this changed dynamic as much as I am, because he starts to nuzzle my neck, where all the little hairs at the back stand right up. His hand, fingertips soft and careful, running up and down on the fabric of my dress, just over where my ribs end and the soft part of my waist starts. It’s beautiful, the slow progress we’re making towards the inevitable.

The movie, although kind of gory and scary, passes by quickly and largely unnoticed. His face remains comfortably resting in the crook of my neck and I’m hanging onto his arm, my hand travelled up his sleeve just enough to hold him. There should be no mistaking that I want him here, this close and even closer to me.

His confidence grows and he wraps his other arm around me too, caressing my arm which is still pretty cold in the unnaturally chilled cinema air. By the time the credits start, I can’t wait to get out, away from grumpy man who interrupted our first, tentative kisses.

“I think I want to go…” I say.

He sits up, letting go as I turn towards him.

“Thought it was going well…” he says, his gaze lingers on my lips just a bit.

“Oh yeah, I meant both of us, somewhere more private… if you want to.” I smile at him. “You didn’t think that I want to leave? No, not at all.”

Want more? You could read part one of The Rebound List already for free as part of Gratis: Midwinter Tales. 

The Rebound List – Finished! (Psst, wanna see the cover?)

I know people have been waiting for this, and it’s way late, but I can finally (sort of) breathe a sigh of relief. The first draft of the final instalment of The Rebound List is now finished! Now it just needs a bit of an edit, some spit and polish, and I’ll be ready to send it out to early readers. Just as a reminder; If you’d like to beta read this book, please contact me on social media, by email, comment here, etc. Although The Rebound List was conceived as four short stories, fear not if you’ve not read the first three, because I’ll be handing out early copies of the entire novel edition. You won’t miss a thing! Anyway, before revealing the cover, further down below, a little reminder of what we’re talking about here…

The Rebound List – Coming out on 28th July 2014!

After nearly four years with Jeff, everything fell apart. I found myself single, scared, but somehow liberated as well. Rather than stumble into another ill advised relationship, my best friend Sally helped me find focus. I would spend the next few months “finding myself” sexually. That’s how The Rebound List was born.

My journey begins with the first item on my list – a virgin. But it’s not easy to go from squeaky-clean committed girlfriend to wanton sex goddess. Hopefully I’ll have the guts to follow through!

What (or whom) would you do to celebrate your freedom after your first serious relationship breaks down?

The Cover, at last!

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Photo-manipulation by Graphic Artist Cindy Grundsten, typography by yours truly 😉

Let me know what you think? And again, if you’d like to help out by beta-reading, or would be happy to read an early review copy, please let me know 🙂

First Anniversary: Just Another Day at the Office

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$0.99 / £0.99 / EUR0.99
Amazon | Kobo | Google Play

If you’re on the mailing list, or you’ve seen my Facebook page lately, you will have noticed I’m having a sale of one of my books, Just Another Day at the Office. If you’ve followed me for a while (or you are actually spying on what’s happening in my head), you might have noticed that this is the first time I’ve discounted this book. I’ve donated it to giveaways, I’ve given free copies away on my page. I have never sold it at a discount.

There’s a reason.

A look at my author page on Amazon reveals I have a bunch of books out. Except for the two Gratis Anthologies, they’re all fairly similar: cheap, cheerful, short. Just Another Day at the Office is my début novel, with the rest of my works being around 1/4th-1/5th the length. It’s my premium product, the thing I’m most proud of, because it’s the first (and currently only) work I have published which I can point to and say:

“Yes! I can write a novel. I can finish something.

Consequently, I am now discounting it for a reason as well. The story, which I first published as four individual parts, was completed a year ago on 23rd May 2013. It’s all too easy to forget these milestones, and I almost did if not for some advertising I had bought months ago, which I expected to use for something else. That something else isn’t ready yet, which actually turned out OK for me. It gave me a prod in the ribs to hurry up and do something with it, that’s a bit more meaningful than just push one of my freebies. As soon as I realised the timing, everything fell into place.

So this week for me is a time of reflection, even though I’m rushed off my feet to make this sale a success. It’s a time to realise that I’ve come quite far in a year, yet there’s always time for improvement.

I’ve made mistakes: I really should have written more last summer, instead I became lax after publishing Just Another Day at the Office, the full edition and paperback. I should’ve figured out how to advertise properly before too. But that’s OK, I’ve learned a lot anyway.

In 2012 I dipped my toes in and published one short story. In 2013 I wrote a novel and a few more bits and bobs. I also got involved in my first collaboration with other writers, in the form of the first Gratis Anthology, which was a raving success. In 2014 I’ll finish my second novel and like to think that I have generally upped my game with improved covers, and a more level headed approach to advertising.

Things are heading in the right direction, let’s see what the rest of the year will bring!

Why Authors Keep Bitching about Reviews

Dear Reader,

I’m sorry, because I know I’m guilty of this: constantly asking, even begging for reviews.

I know it’s annoying, because I don’t always feel like leaving a review for books I’ve read either. I worry about what to write, and whether my review will look stupid among all the others which invariably seem cleverer to me. But there’s a good reason for my irritating behaviour, I promise…

Why Reviews Mean Everything

What do writers want? To write and sell books. Not necessarily to make money, but to fund future book projects. In order to be able to write (and have our work read by people, rather than sitting around on our computers in complete obscurity), we need to have some money to put into our books. Whether it’s for cover art, editing, promotion, gifts. It’s almost impossible to make it in this business if you don’t invest anything into your books.

So, how do we sell books? We rely on our existing readers to buy our new releases, and we try to grow our readership by making it easy for our books to be found by people who’ve never heard of us before.

How do we get found? Dumb luck is too unreliable, so the answer is: advertising.

How do we advertise? When a reader finds us via our advertising, how do we make our book attractive enough to buy?

Some Facts about Advertising

  1. Not every advertising service actually works
  2. The ones that do work, won’t accept books without a proven track record
  3. They choose to measure the success of a book by its reviews
  4. Even if your book gets accepted without any or with few reviews, any reader who clicks on it, is going to feel nervous parting with their money, if they don’t trust the reviews
  5. Because it has to be said: Buying reviews is bad, so there’s no easy way out but to somehow encourage real people to leave real reviews
  6. Amazon (and perhaps other retailers as well), are rumoured to give more prominent placement of books with lots of good reviews.
  7. Think about how you buy books? Given the choice between two interesting titles, do you go for the one with no reviews or the one with 100 of them, and a 4.5 star average?

Together with having a good-looking cover, and a convincing product description, plus attractive price, reviews are a crucial part of turning a book that looks like nobody wants it into one which people are willing to spend on.

So, while I apologise for being pushy and annoying, asking for reviews, I hope this information explains my motivation behind it. And I hope next time you read a book, whether one of mine, or another author’s, you remember some of what I’ve said, and leave them a review. Even if it’s just a couple of sentences outlining what you liked about it. You’ll be contributing directly to that author’s career by doing so. And they’ll appreciate it, so much.

Happy Monday!

This Monday morning, I feel refreshed. I may be at work, and have a ton of stuff to finish this week, but things feel right. It helps that I’m basically on my own today (a colleague who never speaks barely counts as company), so the peace & quiet is refreshing.

For those of you who don’t follow me much on Facebook, I’ve had a very trying few weeks at the day job. It’s been so busy I barely know what to work on first, and as a result my personal life and I suppose my writing has suffered. On Friday, I was so fed up with it all, I abandoned my long to-do list and went home at 5 sharp. I didn’t care anymore. If I stayed late and finished everything, there’d be more to take its place by Monday.

I thought once I get home, sit in front of the TV, complain about how tired I am and fall asleep by about 10 pm, I’d have two days of nothingness in front of me. Two days of sitting around, letting the hours pass by, before heading straight back into work for the last four days before a much needed holiday. That didn’t happen. This is probably a good moment to explain that I am boring as fuck in real life. So is the hubby. We usually don’t go anywhere and an “active” weekend means we’ve done a bit of home improvement or taken a vehicle to be serviced.

Instead, the hubby suggested something crazy and out of character on Saturday. We should go clothes shopping. To illustrate just how insane it is for him to consider such an activity, nevermind to be the driving force behind it, allow me to give some examples of his attitude towards shopping and clothes in general:

  1. He NEVER throws anything away: some of his clothes actually belonged to his dad. 
  2. He is terrible at making decisions, in the rare event that he does buy an item of clothing, he generally can’t choose which colour to go for, so ends up with both.
  3. Online shopping was invented specifically for him so he doesn’t have to go out and deal with other shoppers, or inconveniences such as having to walk from shop to shop.
  4. He’s picky and never likes anything anyone else buys for him, but will generally wear it anyway because it’s a better option than having to go out and shop for himself.

So yeah. After I had already tired myself out trimming the hedge in our front garden (a convenient excuse to be outside spying on our new neighbours, who were just moving in – yep I’m one of those people, apparently), the simple phrase “I need some clothes.” got me disproportionately excited and off we went. Four hours later, our feet ached and we were on the way back with more stuff than I ever expected anyone to buy in a single shopping trip. It seems he caught a bit of holiday fever: the urge to go out and buy new outfits specifically to wear on holiday. And it’s contagious, because now I’ve got it too. 😛

Still feeling all enterprising and stuff on Sunday, we took the cruiser out for a lovely ride through the countryside. Amazing how sometimes a weekend of rest can make you feel more drained than one spent out and about. We’re travelling to Italy on Good Friday, and I’m hopeful that a similar thing will happen throughout the holiday. The plan is to mainly just see a lot of places, there’s not much room for downtime until we’re back on the 27th.

BTW: I’m not going to be online much from the 18th until the 27th, so if you’re going to get in touch during that time, please don’t think I’m ignoring you.

Stranger (The Rebound List Part 3) Chapter 1

Disclaimer: This is a rough draft, it has not been edited or revised yet so I apologise in advance for mistakes and typos.

I’m having one of those evenings. The ones that stretch on forever. Can’t sleep but can’t face sitting around on my own for much longer either. I know it’s because I’m troubled by everything that’s happened lately, which I’ve been unwilling to deal with. But if I keep bottling it up, I’ll never get to sleep…

A dejected sigh later, I find my diary and decide to expose all and confess my sins, even if nobody will see them but me.

“Dear Diary,

Today was my last day at work. And with it, perhaps the last time I see Craig, ever. Ever since our crazy hook-up at the Christmas party a couple of weeks ago, he’s been acting weird. That’s actually not even a fair assessment. Ever since I quit the Monday after the Friday that we hooked up, he’s been cold and indifferent. I hadn’t handled it well, not at all. Not only did I have the worst timing ever, I’d been way too blunt. Sal later wondered if he was about to ask me out a mere moment before I told him, so perhaps he was hoping for more as well. Could that even be? I’d made it abundantly clear beforehand that it was going to be just sex. Not that that plan had gone well the first time around.

Meanwhile, my first list-based lay, the ex-virgin, has been posting a lot about his latest tragic love interest. Apparently she’s great, and perfect, and cute, and god knows what else. And taken.

We’ve talked off and on, but I’ve taken care not to broach the subject of his crush in conversation. I’m curious, but I’m also still pissed off about it, but realise I have no right to feel that way.”

I put the diary and pen down again and take a deep breath. None of this is helping, rather than having a calming effect, my rant is just getting me more and more upset. I hate how things have ended with Craig. And I hate even more how the ex-virgin has seemingly breezed past our night together as if it meant nothing to him.

“Sally meanwhile has set the wheels in motion for item 3 on my list. I am to pick up a stranger at a New Year’s party, with her support (in case I get the urge to fuck it up with my now-legendary bluntness). God knows why I ever decided I’d wanted to do a stranger, it’s a scary prospect. But Sally’s idea of doing it at a party seems solid. Yet the plan does not excite me. Perhaps I should try internet dating and just act normal. Boring.”

I don’t know how you’re meant to feel after a breakup, but it’s been a big, stinking river of shit so far. And I’m not sure the occasional list-inspired highlight has made up for any of it.”

Snapping the diary shut and throwing it away from me onto the coffee table, I rest my head in my hands. There’s no option but to try and stick to the plan. I’ve crossed out two items on my list, meaning I’m halfway through. It doesn’t feel like halfway, it feels like the easy part is over and the real struggle will begin now. A stranger and a threesome. So first I need to find one random guy to sleep with and then two of them?! What was I thinking?

A stranger. It seemed like a good idea back when I wrote the list. Now it seems stupid. But I’d set these tasks for myself and would hate it if I gave up now. Sally will be there with me. She even joked that if a particularly cute guy comes along, we might end up killing two birds with one stone. I didn’t have the heart to tell her I was after a threesome with two men, not just one and her.

So indeed today was my – our – last day. It was also the last day before the Christmas holidays start for most people, so the new job doesn’t begin until the new year. Which reminds me of another thing I’d been dreading. Christmas.

Christmas by myself. No family, no boyfriend and no turkey. The dreariness never ends.

The only positive that’s come out of the entire previous week was bittersweet as well. Our departure at work opened up a vacancy in the internal system, the details of which I was able to send to the ex-virgin. I haven’t heard back from him yet, but I assumed he’s still hunting for work. I’d recommend him to Craig myself, but at this point, that might have the opposite effect.

A glance at the clock reveals it’s 3am and I still can’t sleep. Wonder what’s on TV.

***

Ding. What a strange noise he just made. Ding.

Ding ding ding.

From there his gorgeous face morphs into Craig, but not the one I remember working with before. Rather he looks like the version of Craig that I’d just quit on with a stare that cuts right through me and chills me to my core. His tense lips hardly move as he continues to make the weird sound. Ding, ding.

I blink a few times, trying to shake that overwhelming lethargy you experience when you’re woken at the wrong time. Within seconds, I’d gone from being bedded by the guy this whole list debacle had started with to being bombarded by strange noises and seeing guilt impersonated in front of me. Where’s that godawful noise coming from?

My phone lights up, presumably for the tenth time at least and dings again. Argh, my head. Facebook Messenger is merciless.

“Hey, where the fuck are you?” Sal writes. “I’ve got something to run past you, wake up, sleepyhead!”

Stretching my arms fails to loosen my shoulders which are suffering the consequences of sleeping on the couch.

“What?” I type.

Sally appears to be writing furiously on the other end and I decide to make myself a cup of tea. This morning has started all wrong. That dream. I won’t forgive her for interrupting that dream. It had felt like the guy wasn’t just doing me, but rather we were making love. The way he was looking at me… I’m still on edge because of it. But now that glorious moment has passed.

Ding.

Goddamnit, I’m coming, woman!

The kettle starts bubbling in the background and I check the message that’s just arrived.

“Change of plans for xmas, you still around on the 25th?”

“Yep.”

“OK, awesome. Looks like I’ll be as well. Let’s do something.”

Sal to the rescue, to save me from a lonely Christmas without even any roasted poultry to look forward to? Why not.

“Call me in 10.” I hit send and slump down at the breakfast bar in the kitchen, rubbing my forehead with the palm of my hand. Caffeine. Need caffeine.

A few sips of tea and a biscuit later, the phone rings.

“Morning,” Sally cheers at the other end.

“Meh.”

“Oh you’re such a grouch, you know that? It’s fucking 11 in the morning, not like I’m calling you at an ungodly hour or anything.” She chuckles. Her cheeriness is making me even grumpier.

“I slept at like 5. Or 7. God, I don’t know. Had someone else been around, I’d be accusing them of bashing me over the head with something after I finally did fall asleep. Bloody headache.”

“You’ve got to go easy on the wine,”

“I wasn’t dr-”

“Anyway, stop changing the subject. Christmas Day. You, me, turkey, roasties and all that stuff. What do you say?”

“Alright.”

“I may ask around if anyone else is free as well, for those of us not visiting family that day, we might as well make our own fun.”

“Fine.”

“Since you’re the only one I know who can actually cook, you’ll be in charge of the food. We’ll pool together to buy everything, but it’d be nice if it was actually edible.”

“OK.”

“Awesome. Talk later.” With that, she hangs up and I’m left wondering what exactly I just agreed to.

I’m in charge of the food. Suddenly I wonder if sitting at home by myself without the hassle would have been preferable to this new plan. Still, she had a point. We might as well have something edible on the table that day and I know what her cooking is like. Finding a notepad and pen in a nearby drawer, I make a quick list of ingredients I’ll need to hunt for. Five days to find a suitable bird, that ought to be doable.

***

Turns out, time flies when you’re planning a feast. Sally’s main contribution, beyond the initial idea, came in the form of a few more attendees, and a ridiculous email inviting us all to her place for her proposed “Christmas Day for sad, lonely fucks”. You simply can’t make it up.

I’ve accumulated more food than the average household would eat in a month without even noticing, while leaving her in charge of the booze. The kitchen is covered with a mountain of dishes I thought I’d need, just in case. I need to give her one credit, a big one. I haven’t had time to feel guilty about anything that was bothering me last week.

Hearing Craig’s voice greeting Sal at the door and thanking her for the invite comes as quite a shock. Even so, I don’t have time for a meltdown, instead I nod at him once he enters and continue to try and not burn any of the food.

When we finally sit down at the table; Craig, Sally’s two school friends and a neighbour, her and me, I notice everyone is in much better spirits than I’ve allowed myself to be. But the food is ready, and I think I’ve managed reasonably well, despite the constant interruptions earlier. Everyone agrees, even Craig, who seems a lot less cold and horrible than I’d remembered him.

By the end of the evening, which drags on a lot later than just lunch, apparently all is forgiven. A huge weight falls off my shoulders. He had indeed wondered whether to ask me out the day I quit, but more out of a sense of obligation than anything else. In the meantime, he’s been on a first date with Sarah from HR and found they have a lot more in common than expected.

Despite the herculean task of putting together a meal for all of us on my own without much in the way of previous experience, the day leaves me content. It has been a success, and someone I’d worried about turning into an enemy, ends up still being a friend.

Thanks for reading. This excerpt, as well as any other parts of the same story which I may have shared previously are all part of the book The Rebound List

FREEBIE! (Holding On, and the rest of Gratis)

gratis2-boxsetsmallThe day is finally here! Gratis : New Beginnings, an erotic story anthology I’ve been involved in is officially live. And the best bit is, the ebook is free.

Summary:

After the well-received Gratis: Midwinter Tales, published in December last year, familiar as well as new names present a hot-off-the-press collection of quality erotic literature to follow in its footsteps. Gratis: New Beginnings is a refreshing look at the as yet young year in all its glorious potential. Themes of rejuvenation, redemption and personal growth mingle with the tantalising imagery and intense emotion our existing readers are already familiar with.

Spring is a time perfect for falling in love or lust and the ten authors of Gratis: New Beginnings are keen to sweep you up in their erotic fantasies. This collection contains stories by Erzabet Bishop, M.J. Carey, Km Dylan, Jason Jaxx, Kay Jaybee, Livilla Sanders, L. Moone, Molly Synthia, Chloe Thurlow and Elizabeth Woodham.

My own contribution is something a little different, titled Holding On.

Five years as a sexchat operator have been more than enough for Charlotte. She can’t wait to leave it all behind: the late nights, the dirty talk and the mouthbreathers on the other end of the line.

But there’s a little hitch, a hiccup in her plan. There’s one client she would rather not quit talking to…

Download totally and utterly free of charge now:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords | Google Play

The Rebound List – Deleted Scene

I’m starting work on The Rebound List #3, ‘Stranger’, and with it am thinking about what’s to come. This scene has been left out of Silver Fox and I’m not sure it fits into Stranger either so I may just skip it. Anyway, hope you enjoy it as a little teaser 😉

“That’s how you said it, in that context?” Sally’s eyes are wide, chin about to hit the floor. “You didn’t seriously tell Craig you’re quitting right when he was about to figure out whether to ask you on a date? That’s cold, no that’s downright evil!”

“Umm, well… Better out than in?” I shrug, trying to hide the stabbing embarrassment that overcomes me every time I replay the conversation in my head. She’s right, that was absolutely terrible. I should learn to think before talking.

“You are as tactful and subtle as a rhinoceros at times. Damn!” Sally looks like she might burst into laughter, if only she could remember to breathe.

“Fuck, I don’t know. Let’s talk about something else…”

“Fine. Damn… No wonder he didn’t take it very well though. Next time, please talk to me first, OK? I’ll tell you what to say and how.” She leans forward and grabs the bottle of Merlot from the table, refilling our glasses.

“So, Becks. Remind me what’s next.” Sally  scoots closer to me and slides my glass back in my direction.

I show her the pad. Two entries crossed out, two remain.

“Ohh, I like the sound of that!”

I’m not convinced and lean back against the sofa, taking a sip.

“Yeah, I guess.”

My tone must’ve tipped her off because she pats me on the arm reassuringly.

“Seriously, that one will be the easiest yet. We’ll go out together, I can be your wing-girl. Or whatever. Perhaps we should go to a club. Wait!” Sal smacks the armrest of the sofa with her flat hand.

“I’ve got the perfect plan! Four words: New – Year’s – Eve – Party!”

I sigh and let the idea sink in. Pick up some random at a party? That’s so not me. But then, that’s the whole point of the list, isn’t it?

Dear Reviewers

Not a week goes by that there isn’t some author-lashing-out-against-negative-review or alternately reviewers-lashing-out-against-bad-author scandal going on in this exciting world of digital publishing. It seems like a good time to blatantly copy other author blogs to make a stand myself.

Recently, I ventured into the virtual “wild west” that is Goodreads and stayed longer than I normally would. You see, Goodreads, is a reader site. One where a lot of passionate people come together and write exactly how they felt about a certain book or story. It is known to be a potentially scary place for authors who are easily discouraged. It is the home of the “star rating only” review, where anyone can give a book as many (or few) stars they like, without necessarily stating why they feel that way or perhaps even without reading the book, as demonstrated by many books which attract stars before even hitting the shelves.

My usual approach to Goodreads is similar to what a lot of other authors do: Go in, hold your breath, add any new releases or make (only vital) amendments to existing books. And whatever you do, never scroll down to read the reviews. If at all possible, don’t even look at the average rating.

But as I said, recently, I ignored my usual M.O. in favour of actually looking around with my eyes wide open. I read every single review I hadn’t seen so far, looking for not just the occasional pat on the back which would keep me going, but also constructive criticism to help me improve. My ratings aren’t brilliant on Goodreads, but they’re probably quite normal, not terrible. Informal advice for authors states that Goodreads and Amazon averages will normally differ by one star, and that’s about what I saw.

While reading, and taking note of some of the issues reviewers found with my work, I tried to work out which were worth keeping in mind, and which were just down to a difference in taste. After all, you can’t write something that’ll appeal to everyone, and that’s perfectly fine. I also was reminded of the “like” feature which allows you to give a bit of appreciation for reviews and other content, similar to the “like” button you find on Facebook. Then I felt tempted to “like” all my reviews, even the bad ones. I may not agree with everyone’s opinion, but I appreciate they took the time to share.

To the right reader, a negative review complaining about a certain aspect of the story can be a positive. Perhaps the thing one reviewer didn’t like is something another is looking for. In any case, I appreciate someone out there taking the time to read my work and commenting on it. That’s a lot more than I could’ve hoped for a couple of years ago.

I felt worried though. If I “like” a negative review, could this be seen as trying to be sarcastic? Would it seem invasive to think that a nameless, faceless writer who sells their work on Amazon actually pays attention to Goodreads? I’ve heard of people getting into trouble for thanking a reviewer for a positive review, as though simply entering Goodreads is akin to reading someone’s private correspondence over their shoulder, or eavesdropping on a personal conversation among friends. I suppose I can see where people are coming from, yet at the same time, this is unrealistic. When you post your views on a public forum – a website anyone can sign up for and read through – that’s not private. It’s exactly the same as sharing incriminating photographs of yourself on Facebook and then being surprised when the cops knock on your door. The internet is not private.

But I don’t want to step on anyone’s toes either.

So I’m explaining myself here instead, on my home turf. I do appreciate all the reviews I’ve gotten. Even the negative ones, because they give me something to learn from. Thanks, everyone! And please keep ’em coming because nothing is lonelier than an Amazon listing with zero stars.

My Boring First Time

Since a fair proportion of my thoughts involve the subject of virginity, I figured it’s only fair to share my own first sexual experience. It’s possible I’ve mentioned it before, actually I don’t really remember and can’t be arsed to search through my older posts, so here goes…

In a time, about a decade ago, and a place which was in a different country from where I am now, I was 17 and somebody’s (online) girlfriend. We had known each other (online) for about one-and-a-half years and had met I believe twice before. I’m sorry in advance, it’s been a while and the details are very blurry.

The first time we met in person I was 16, and he was 21, and we made out and fooled around a bit but there was no sex-sex. The second time, at his place, there were too many parents and other such people around to be able to get away with anything much. My memory is trying to tell me he wasn’t that interested anyway, didn’t see the need to hurry and might’ve even liked the idea of waiting, but I’m not 100% sure now.

I on the other hand was not (and still am not) known for my patience.

So, upon seeing each other again around the time of my High School Graduation, we were messing about a bit in my bedroom and I decided it was time. Rather than jerk him off or doing a sort of strange dry humping type thing, I wanted to know what the real thing would be like. I don’t recall being particularly turned on, just sort of curious.

“Let’s try it,” I said. “If you don’t want to after that, we don’t have to do it again.”

He sort of shrugged and mumbled something about thinking we were going to wait, then agreed and I took my panties off.

After climbing on top and trying to figure out what the right angle would be (I’d practised with a vibrator before, but that’s different), I soon figured out a way and the initial stinging went away pretty quick too. I rode him, he came, I didn’t, and it was overall alright.

A little while later we did it again and that was also OK. Then we had a shower together and my insides were on fire and I wondered if that burning feeling would ever go away.

It did by the next day, so we did it again, and a few times later I figured out how to make myself cum. If anyone’s taking notes, he was quite slim, I was as well, and him sitting with legs crossed with me on top, grinding into him while hanging on with my arms around his waist did the job at the time. Sadly, now that I’m not so skinny, any sort of thigh fat gets in the way, plus the hubby’s thighs are quite muscular, so that technique no longer works. Thankfully others do.

I always found it quite amusing that at 17 I lost it at the same age as my mom (yes, we talked about issues like this). Though to this day I wonder if her experience was more exciting. I should probably ask her next time we’re downing wine in front of the TV and expect a blushy, awkward, response in between coughs that starts with: “Why do you have to ask me stuff like this?”

There may be people reading this now, thinking “OMG that sounds boring as hell, don’t you regret it? Sure, he was your boyfriend at the time, but don’t you wish your first time was more… special?”

No, I don’t really care. My virginity wasn’t precious and it didn’t need to be guarded with my life and handed only to my knight in shining armour. And let’s be clear here, that guy was no knight of any sort.

There had to be a first time, and I’m glad it was consensual, that’s all there is to it for me. It might’ve been better if I’d been madly and passionately in love with the guy. But really, the first time is going to hurt and you’re not going to be particularly good at it. The second time it gets a little better, the third, fourth, fifth times perhaps you’ll start to see the point of it. Or not, I’m pretty sure I got over the novelty of it pretty quickly- with him, anyway. I have zero patience for regrets and what-ifs.

I think when you’re with someone compatible enough and you do find that passion, you’ll have an awesome experience anyway. And if it isn’t your (boring) first time, at least you’ll have the frame of reference necessary to know how great it was, plus you’ll know what to do. Sounds like a double win to me.