Ever since I was younger, I wanted to be a writer. Never in a million years did
I think that sex was what I’d be writing about and that in doing so I’d
become a better person. Now, incidentally, my debut novel, an erotic romance by
the name of UNDER HER
AUTHORITY, will be coming out on Feb. 14th with Totally Bound.
The first erotic novel I read was something like a twist fate. It was a spin-off
of a popular YA paranormal romance. On an adventurous day, I purchased the book
without reading the blurb. Why not? I was loyal to the author, loving her style
and her ability to create fantastical worlds. I’ll never forget reading that sex
scene. I was somewhere between astounded and intrigued. Born in the middle of
the bible belt, I’d never had access to these types of books.
So, how did I end up writing romance and what does that have to do with activism?
In the middle of a job and full-time course load, I didn’t have the time or
energy to complete the YA manuscript I’d been working on, but I didn’t want to
push aside writing. I decided to challenge myself by picking a subject that
would require less mental-strain (futuristic world-building is a killer) but
more emotional strength. I had always been uncomfortable with sex. The sex in my
relationship had idled after two years. Childhood memories of a paranoid father
who believed my mother was unfaithful and, in turn, took it out aggressively on
my family made me associate sex with something bad. I didn’t want this to be the
case and with my struggling relationship, I was willing to turn to any avenue
that offered hope.
I went through all the stages of writing an erotic romance, and it was one of
the hardest things I’ve ever done. It required me to break past the mental walls
I’d created and discuss things that made me uncomfortable. The more I fell in
love with my character and their connection, the less difficulty I had about
helping them express it in a physical way. I realized how beautiful sex can be,
and after months of editing and researching, I began talking about sex more
openly, which led to being more open sexually. Badwas no longer
synonymous with sex.
A year later, I volunteered at my university's first reproductive justice
summit. I hosted the workshop Let’s Talk About Sex. In this workshop we
passed around a plush toy, a female breast I’d purchased from a sex store, and
listed alternative ways of saying our favorite sexy words. Penis became hot
shaft. Vagina became feminine fruit. We wrote erotic scenes and
read them aloud. It was both fun and enlightening, exactly how talking about sex
should be. I had succeed in my goal, which was to have the participants step out
of the zone where sex equates to shame and too-private-to-discuss because I’d
learned an important lesson I needed to share. How can we begin to discuss the
many issues involving sex and sexuality, if we are not open to dialogue, if we
do not take the time to get to know our own bodies and if we do not have the
confidence to speak up?
In America, many schools prefer talks of abstinence over safe sex. Media is
oversexualized yet the act itself is shamed. You have too many partners you run
the risk of being called slut or manwhore. You wait and you’re called a
virgin. Among men who are part of a couple, 75% say they always have an
orgasm, as opposed to 26% of the women. According to a study by Edward O.
Laumann, PhD. These are amongst some of the many reasons conversations about
sex are important.
That is where erotic romance comes in. Erotic novels normalize sex and kink.
Those who write them are activists for the sex-positive movement. As a matter of
fact, they’re radicals. They take subjects surrounded by controversy and hone it
while letting everyone else know it’s okay to speak about your desires,
wants, fears and needs. Openness and acceptance is the key to a thriving society
and that is exactly what every good erotic romance teaches.
Lauren goes by the pen name L.T. Shade and lives in Miami, FL. She loves
black coffee and sexy heroes. Not exactly in that order. Nothing makes Lauren
happier than writing, or reading, about strong and capable heroines and their
happily ever after's. When she’s not writing, she spends her time reading,
overdosing on Cuban coffee, interning as a book publicist and hanging out with
her amazing family and her American Cocker Spaniel, Princess Albie.
She tried to resist. Fate had other things in store.
No one tells Shane Williams what to do. His world. His rules—which is why he ran
away from home at eighteen to pursue his dream of making a name for himself
outside of small-town Georgia. Ten years later, he is one of the hottest
creative directors on the east coast and the majority shareholder in a digital
media firm in Charlotte. Handing over the business portion of his company to his
trusted friend and business partner and keeping his true identity as the founder
a secret has its perks. But Shane is about to find out one of its flaws.
At the expense of her relationships, Rosemary Berkowitz has always done what it
takes to succeed. Being a female leader in an all-boys tech field has made her
tougher than nails. She may be a sweet country girl, but, underneath her
innocent exterior, Rose is a boss with an iron fist. She never backs down from a
challenge, and, when she wants something, she goes after it full force.
No matter how sexy his smile is, the attention of a tattooed bad boy is the last
thing Rose wants. After a club outing with her best friend turns into a steamy
night with a mysterious stranger, Rose wants nothing more than to move past her
one-night stand—however amazing it was—and continue to mend her broken career.
Little does Rose know that fate has other things in store.
Reader Advisory: This book contains some scenes of public sex.
Sensual [Totally Bound Publishing, On Sale:
February 14, 2017, e-Book, ISBN: 9781786511317 / eISBN: 9781786511317]
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