Email: rachelkramerbussel at


Lusty Lady

Watch my first and favorite book trailer for Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica. Get Spanked in print and ebook

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The magical sex column that boosted my 2014

Sometimes freelancing, well, sucks. Day to day I vacillate on whether I know what I'm doing or should chuck it all in and try to look for a secure job, though who knows if any job is truly "secure" these days. Maybe not day to day, but this month that is accurate, and certainly not a month goes by when I don't wonder if I should be doing this, if I'm pulling my financial weight in my household, if I have what it takes to make a living at this (I believe in myself as a writer, but you have to write a ton and edit lots of maybe-they'll-sell-maybe-they-won't anthologies to make a living). So yes, I do find myself thinking jealously of my friends with steady jobs or other means of financial security. Then I remember that my #1 life goal right now is to be a work at home mom, and while it will be up to the universe whether I get to the mom part, it seems, the work at home part is up to me.

Mostly, what I've learned in the last 3 years as a full-time freelancer is that you never know what will happen, good or bad. Gigs magically arrive and are sometimes over before they even start. Sometimes the gig I'm excited about at first becomes arduous and next to impossible. I will be reading and following and trying to absorb by osmosis The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte so I can get my work life in line with what I want to be putting out into the world and what I'm good at. I will be focusing more on teaching erotica and sex writing in the new year, which is part of why I started my Erotica Writing Tip Tuesday posts. They're also, it should be clear, a reminder to me that I can do this writing thing, even when it's hard, even when I don't feel like I have a clear path, even amidst rejection.

All that is a way to preface one of the 3 giant career gifts I was given this year. I say "gifts" because that is how they each felt, even though they were gifts I've been working toward since leaving law school sans degree back in 1999. That is something that will forever hang over my head, but it was also a learning experience that taught me that even if you push yourself, sometimes a career path just isn't right, and something about this one is. Which is why when I woke up at CatalystCon in September to an email from the editor of Philadelphia City Paper asking me if I wanted to write a sex column for them, even though I'm actually a Jersey girl, felt like this wondrous gift. I've never had a steady weekly gig like this and sometimes that's a lot of pressure, but it also pushes me to seek out and find topics and events and people I wouldn't have otherwise. Another key difference aside from word count and timing from my Voice column is that I'm in a live-in monogamous going-on-three-years relationship. There's less to write about my own sex life than there was in my single days, and that's a good thing. I will probably always write about my life, but it will probably be more about me as a hoarder and a traveler and other aspects of me than just what I do in bed, though there are hints of it in the columns below, like when I prefer sex, what I wore for my first pegging, the joy of blowjobs and such.

I have no idea how long it will last, because you never do with these things, but my dream is to get to write a column a week for all of 2015, to stretch myself and grow and get sharper about writing to a relatively small word count, to showcase for myself and my readers about aspect of sex I/they hadn't thought of before. Bottom line: for however long this column lasts and my stint as a freelancer lasts, I will be grateful. I will also work harder to nurture and sustain my career so I can be the mashup writer/editor/teacher/speaker/blogger I am now.

So as the year wraps up with this final 2014 column, I wanted to say thank you to the paper, the universe and whatever other forces gave me this opportunity, and to highlight the columns I've written so far. In chronological order from the first one to this week's, here are my City Paper sex columns:

"Are you a slut?"

"Why Sex Ed Weeks on campus make sense"

"It's Sex O'Clock, time for a weekend romp"

"No topic's taboo at this Philly Erotic Literary Salon"

"Best-selling sex toys for couples of all kinds"

"Pegging for the first time"

"When it comes to sex, don't tell me where to get pleasure"

"Saying thanks for the sex lessons over the years"

"How to talk dirty without sounding cheesy"

"Niche porn films face censorship fight in Britain"

"With personal lube, slippery when wet"

"Meet a happy 29-year-old virgin"

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My Christmas sex column is on a 29-year-old Catholic virgin who's critiquing purity culture

My last column of 2015 will be officially published in print on Christmas Day (as it is every Thursday) but arrived online two days early! In "Meet a happy 29-year-old virgin", I profile Chastity is For Lovers author Arleen Spenceley, whose book from Ave Maria Press I discovered thanks to the brilliance that is Netgalley. I'm so glad I did because her writing is smart, passionate, personal and thought-provoking. Do I agree with all of it? Well, read my column to find out, but you can probably guess. Do I want to keep writing columns like this that make me think and grapple and learn about a side of sexual culture I'd never considered before? A thousand times yes! My dream is to get to write this column every week of 2015. If you want to show Philadelphia City Paper that this is a good idea, please check it out, like it, pass it on, comment, tell me what else I should be writing about, etc. Thanks for reading!


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Erotica Writing Tip Tuesday #1

I am trying to get myself back to regular blogging, and one thing I think will help is having some regular features. So every Tuesday I'm going to share something I've learned about erotica writing based on my writing for the past 15 years and editing for the past 10. I'll do my best to make them practical. Of course, this is my utterly subjective POV and you are welcome to take or ignore or vehemently disagree with my advice. These are things that have worked for me or things I've noticed from other people's work. They aren't all going to work for everyone, but if you're like me and often get stuck in coming up with plots or characters or figuring out what the next step is with your erotica, these may give you a little boost.

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1. Write about more than two people

Now, I don't mean that every time you write erotica there should be three or more people. Two people, or even one, are more than enough for good erotica. But I've found that after writing dozens of two person stories, sometimes I want to add a little more to the action; I want those "extra" characters to help drive the action. There are some major advantages for the writer of adding a person:

more drama - who is the third (or fourth/fifth/etc.) person? are there three or more single people joining forces, or a solo person joining a couple? If it's a solo person with a couple, whose POV is the story told from? How did they all get together? Was it spontaneous or very well planned?

more emotion, more POVs - whether they are polyamorous, swingers, first time threesome enjoyers, the emotional stakes are often higher. You can tell the story in first person, second or third, as always, but either way you go, there's more people to take into consideration. If it's a couples with person A and person B getting it on with person C, told from person A's point of view, A gets to observe B and C, interact with each and see how they interact with each other. Maybe person A thinks they know everything about B, but learns something new about them they'd never considered even after a long time together by watching them with C. I think here is where three or more people can truly add to the stakes of a story like this.

more physical description - you're adding at least two eyes, two hands, two nipples, two ears, etc. to the mix, so you have more room, plus if you've got, say, three people, there are so many more possible permutations to the physical action); voyeurism and exhibitionism - this is practically built into the story when there's more than two people, and can be played up to the hilt; teasing/talking about one of the characters to another - with two people, of course there are plenty of dirty talk opportunities, but with three or more, you can talk about someone right to their face, tease them by discussing them as an object, play up their helplessness or their power; two people can tag team dirty talk a third. There's really endless room for the kinds of conversations that may ring false with just two people.

your story stands out - unless you're writing for a specific menage or multiple partner market, if you make your characters polyamorous or swingers or simply solo sexy folks who get together in some fashion, you're making your piece stand apart from those writing about two people. This isn't some magic bullet that will get your piece published, but it is a way to possibly stand out and also could lead to future writings. In the above example, maybe your first story is from person A's POV, but a future story deals with that same couple but is from person B's POV.

To see an example from my writing, check out the excerpt of my sexy, sadistic dom with two subs (and a bonus one for the sake of the story) tale "Dual Mastery" at Tamsin Flowers' Superotica Avent Calendar. The story is from Best Bondage Erotica 2014 which you can read in print or ebook or listen to:



Kindle ebook edition

Amazon UK

Nook ebook edition



IndieBound (find your local independent bookstore)

Audible audiobook (click through for a free sample listen)

Cleis Press

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Friday, December 19, 2014

Waking up to awesome news: another LitReactor student sold a story

Nothing makes me happier as a writing teacher than hearing that my students found my classes helpful and used them to get their work out into the world, so I was thrilled to wake up to the news that my LitReactor student Ashton Peal sold (trans-)lesbian story "The Second First Time" to Lizzie's Bedtime Stories Appetite Anthology edited by Ily Goyanes. I have permission to share this from an email from Ashton Peal:
Thanks so much again for the class. I didn't know if I could comfortably write erotica at all - much less for characters so very dissimilar from myself - but apparently so. It's definitely been an eye-opener and something I hope to keep on with.
Now, I don't think publication is the only indicator of a writing's worth; I've had plenty of work rejected and as an editor have had to reject countless amazing stories for various reasons (space, overlapping topics, etc.). But it's both validation and motivation when it happens, and one thing I worked extremely hard on with my first LitReactor class was making it practical. I got the scoop from editors and publishers on exactly what they were looking for, and updated the calls for submission section of our private message board repeatedly, hoping to encourage students to submit. When I teach in person classes, I don't have followup so I never know if those students have turned their test runs into final drafts and submitted them. With my online classes, it's built into the program, and I'm so honored that it's encouraged people to get their work out there, which can be scary and daunting no matter how many times you do it.

I am going to have even more Q&As and publisher information for my February-March LitReactor online erotica class, which starts February 12th. There's a detailed week by week breakdown on their site. It does require a bit of a time commitment as you'll be writing a story per week, with the option of reading and critiquing your fellow students' work, which I found an invaluable part of the process in terms of getting to see how different people approached the same topic and assignment. Registration is now open, and the class is limited to 16 people. The last one sold out, so if you are interested, please check out the information, let me know if you have any questions at rachelkb at with "LitReactor" in the subject line. You can also read what LN Bey, who sold a story developed as a LitReactor erotica assignment to a Circlet Press anthology, said about my class.


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Thursday, December 18, 2014

I love lube, and want to know your sex column topic wish list

For my sex column this week, I worked in a Bon Jovi reference like the good Jersey girl I am, gushed about lube and talked to some of my favorite sex toy bloggers. It's not an "edgy" out there topic, as is meant to be my focus, but one that is truly about the sex "toy" I use most often and something that I wish I'd known about earlier in life, so I hope you'll check it out.

I've been enjoying überlube since discovering it via Unbound Box but I welcome your lube suggestions, especially because my bottle is running out!


And now for the shameless part of this post...I'd love it if you'd share the column with others (especially anyone who might have a good topic for a future column). I truly hope to be writing 52 columns for Philadelphia City Paper in 2015, but for that to happen, people have to read it, and let them know. It's not the most fun position to be in to constantly have to tack on "and could you please Tweet and like this?" I feel like both a broken record and that annoying person always looking for validation, like when I was little and would ask, "I'm sorry, do you still like me?"

BUT, and of course there's a but, that's the reality of the modern writing world. This column literally fell into my lap one morning via email while I was at CatalystCon, and it's been a thrill, coming in conjunction with writing my very first book, to have a steady weekly change to spout off about sex. Like anything other writing opportunity, it's precarious; as I know from previous experience, one week you can be in, and one week you can be out. It's part of the joy of what I do as a freelancer that every day is different, but also what makes me often envious of my friends with full-time steady jobs and paychecks who don't have to rely on their significant other for health insurance. So I will keep on being that maybe slightly annoying pest, but with the goal of getting to explore as many topics as I and you can think of. I asked for sex column ideas on Twitter yesterday and got some great ones. Have an idea for me? Email me at rachelkb at with "City Paper" in the subject line. And if you already have, I am making my way through my column topics, even making a week by week list for next year. Speaking of which, the sex writing fairies were extra kind to me this year because I'll be starting another sex column in January, this one online only with a different audience in mind and different tone, so I'll have even more juicy aspects of getting it on to cover.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

My ebook Sex & Cupcakes is only 99 cents today!

Thanks to my publisher Thought Catalog Books, there's a one-day sale: for just 99 cents, you get my 9-essay collection Sex & Cupcakes on Kindle (but you can also read it on your computer or phone so no worires if you don't have a Kindle). It's also coming out as an audiobook in 2015 but will surely be more than 99 cents. Sweetening the deal: my post about 10 crazy cupcakes I've seen in 10 years of cupcake blogging that went up yesterday for National Cupcake Day. Yum!

Here's the official blurb:
Sex and Cupcakes is a collection of essays from writer Rachel Kramer Bussel reflecting on her years as a sex columnist and cupcake blogger, detailing her dirty and sweet sides as well as sexual adventures, politics, heartbreak, tattoos and more. Sex and Cupcakes reveals the woman behind the stereotype, one far more complex than Carrie Bradshaw and her Manolos, a woman willing to expose herself, on paper and in the flesh, who takes risks and gets hurt and keeps on searching for love, sex, passion and happiness. Includes essays such as “I’m Pro-Choice and I F***,” “Wearing My Tattooed Heart On My Sleeve,” “My Boyfriend’s Fat,” “Champagne Sex,” and “Monogamishmash.”

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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Today only: 25% off any book at Amazon

Yes, really, any print book on Amazon is 25% off today:
To use this promotion, you must enter "BOOKDEAL25" at checkout under the "Gift cards & promotional codes" section to receive 25% off any ONE (1) book purchased in your order (up to $10 promotional credit).
All my books are listed on my website and most give you a free sample on Amazon or you can look inside them. My top 3 picks?

The Big Book of Orgasms: 69 Sexy Stories - my all-time favorite book I've edited! Named a must read of the year (though technically it's a 2013 release) by Book Riot.

The Big Book of Submission: 69 Kinky Tales - this year's kinky contribution that has a ton of variety in terms of who's giving and getting, and lots of twists on BDSM. Want a free sneak peek, or rather, 69 of them? Excerpts from all the stories are here.

Orgasmic: Erotica for Women - "Erotica for Women" is part of the marketing, which is necessary in a highly competitive publishing marketplace, but please don't let that dissuade you if you don't identify as a woman. These stories are hot, hot, hot, and this book contains one of my all-time favorites that gets mentioned in every erotica class I teach: "Chemistry" by Velvet Moore. I almost failed chemistry so this one continues to wow me every tie I read it.

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Friday, December 12, 2014

Bettie Page spanking paddle, UK porn censorshop and Free the Nipple

It's been a busy week, so I will recap my writing and have more for you this weekend.


I wrote a gift guide for TueNight (with different items than my Philadelphia City Paper sexy gift guide) and it includes the Bettie Page paddle above, for sale at Chicago's Early to Bed!

This week's sex column is on the recent UK porn rules, entitled, "Niche porn films face censorship fight in Britian" (my working title was "No squirting please, we're British" since female ejaculation is banned). I interviewed feminist pornographer Petra Joy. These new rules prompted today's face-sitting protest in London. Below image is by Petra Joy to protest these new rules.


For, I wrote "Free the Nipple! The Problem With How We Think About Breasts", about the new film Free the Nipple and why nipples deserve to be free, but not put on a maternal pedestal.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

What are your favorite dirty words? Mine are "cock" and "spanking"

If you didn't get a chance to read it, my sex column on how to talk dirty from last week offered up tips from Carnalcopia podcasters Ashley Manta and Katie Mack (pictured below). So I wanted to know: What are your favorite dirty words? Leave a comment and let me know! You can leave just the word, or a little more info. Feel free to also share your least favorite dirty word, the way "penis" doesn't work for Katie. (Note that comments are moderated but as long as yours isn't spam, I'll approve it.)

Me? I love the word "cock" and also "spanking." Sometimes I like "good" and sometimes I like "bad," but it all depends on the context, as does almost everything about my sexual preferences. I don't know how often my favorites appear in my erotica stories; usually those are more about the tone in which something is said, which can be harder to convey in writing. Another reason I love sexy talk; because the right pitch can make all the difference. Someone's name can be a seduction or a threat, a compliment or an epithet, and the same person may respond differently to all these nuances.


Tuesday, December 09, 2014

I'll be on the CatalystCon Keynote Opening Panel - early registration closes tomorrow

Quick update: I'll be one of the opening keynote panelists at sexuality and activism conference CatalystCon in Arlington, Virginia on March 27th! I'll be joined by Francisco Ramirez, Kristin Beck (star of the documentary Lady Valor) and Dr. Melanie Davis, moderated by Lynn Comella. Early bird registration prices end tomorrow, December 10th. Use code RACHEL for $10 off. Also check out my two writing workshops earlier in the day.


Saturday, December 06, 2014

Testimonial from a LitReactor erotica writing student

One of the students who took my sold out LitReactor erotica writing class, LN Bey, who sold the story "Rain Dog" to Laura Antoniou's 2015 Circlet Press anthology No Safewords II - A Marketplace Fan Fiction Collection as part of the classwork, wrote this wonderful testimonial that I wanted to share. If you're interested in finding out more, my next LitReactor 4-week class starts February 12th.
I have no doubt that I am a better writer for taking Rachel’s class—not just a better writer of erotica, but a better writer overall. I initially enrolled primarily for information about the erotica publishing industry. And she provided lots of that, including interviews with publishers and more established writers.

But it was the writing experience itself that was the most beneficial. The lessons themselves were informative and very helpful, and perhaps the most useful thing of all was the discipline of having to conceive, write, and revise a story each week based on those lessons. The assignments forced me to focus—and fast, and I am all the better for it.

As with any learning process, the more you put in, the more you get out of it—and reading the other students’ stories, besides being simple fun (there were some great writers in the class!), compelled me to think more deeply about my own storytelling logic as I analyzed and commented on theirs. It was also fun to get to know these writers, many of whom I am staying in touch with.

Not only was it an enjoyable and transformative experience, but I wrote one story which was accepted into an erotica anthology, and two more that I definitely feel are publishable. I have come out of Rachel’s class a more confident, knowledgeable, and disciplined writer than I was before.

—LN Bey

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I'm getting naked in this post

Actually, I'm writing about why I support women who take nude photos at YouBeauty, inspired by Kim Kardashian saying she'd support North West if she someday wanted to take it all off for the cameras. I also quote some women who've had wonderful experiences posing nude and give a shoutout to Substantia Jones's activist photo project Adipositivity, which produces an annual calendar I highly recommend if you like photos of sexy fat women (see my article for the link to them). What do you think? If you like my article, I'd love it if you'd pass it on.


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Friday, December 05, 2014

Hotel erotica sale: Suite Encounters paperback is only $4.84 on Amazon right now (but don't buy the audiobook!)

I can be a bit obsessive, and when I can't sleep or can't make myself do something legitimately productive, I browse Amazon for books to buy or add to my to read list and to see how my own books are doing. Sometimes my "pointless" activity yields something useful, like the fact that, for who knows how long, my anthology Suite Encounters: Hotel Sex Stories, is only $4.84 for the paperback version as of this posting at 8:42 a.m. EST on December 5th. Since I have no idea how long this will last (I didn't take a screenshot but I believe a few days ago it was also marked down in the $5 or $6 range), so if you like hot hotel smut, I'd act on this now.


My story was inspired by a stay a few years ago at a Westin and their amenities menu. I love writing about characters with quirky, sexy jobs, and in this one, my protagonist is asked to organize and take part in an orgy. She does it, but not just for her paycheck. You can also get the book in other formats, but there's one I will actively NOT recommend, and that's the audiobook. I love the fact that so many people are listening to audiobooks, and the work Rose Caraway and Lucy Malone and several others have done with my books is outstanding. On the other hand, Lili Tulip, who narrated the Suite Encounters audiobook, did so with a robotic type of voice that just does not work for me or most readers, so much so that when I became aware of the problem via correctly unhappy customers, I made sure to request other narrators in the future. That being said, there are plenty of ways to enjoy this book, which makes a great sexy holiday gift or couples vacation reading, and this paperback bargain is one of the cheapest. I don't know how long it will last or even when it's at such a cheap price, but it's a steal.

Here's the first 1,500 words or so of my story "Special Request" - I hope you'll check out the rest too!

"Special Request" by Rachel Kramer Bussel from Suite Encounters: Hotel Sex Stories
I love my job as a hotel concierge, because every day is utterly different from the last. One day I might be called upon to have a treadmill, exercise bike, yoga instructor or Reiki healer sent to a room, another day it might be a pet snake or exotic foodstuff. My hotel specializes in offering anything a customer wants, for a price, and I’m the go-to person, the professional procurer.

I’m paid handsomely for the job—as I should be, considering it involves crazy hours and traversing all the hidden nooks and crannies of Los Angeles, and sometimes other parts of California—but that’s not what I love best about it. I love it because I’m a people person, and there’s no better job for meeting new people every day than catering to the demands of a high-end hotel’s ritziest, most demanding customers. I graduated with a degree in sociology but quickly learned the best way of studying human beings isn’t by studying them, but by interacting with them and being privy to their secrets. I was like a special combination of therapist and magician, ready to listen to the oddest of requests and produce the desired results, while sparing my clients any of the tedium of decision-making. All they had to do was decide they wanted something, and I made it happen. I’d been doing the job for five years, on a lucky break fresh out of college after applying for the job and being sent on what amounted to a scavenger hunt. I received a hefty bonus each year and was treated as a key part of the team. I was at every important meeting, and while my name didn’t appear in the hotel’s literature or press releases, the fact that we offered every amenity one could imagine was clearly stated. My existence was a little bit under-the-radar, but word got around, and often I’d be requested by name by clients who wouldn’t part with the information about their needs unless we were in a locked room and they’d made sure nobody else was listening. Basically, I’m paid to be discreet, discerning, direct and thorough, to listen without judgment. As long as the client can pay our fees, they can have anything flown in from anywhere; they can buy goods, services, and even sex—for the right price. I’d even signed a noncompete, and while I knew I hadn’t seen everything, I thought I’d come pretty damn close—but nothing had prepared me for Claudine.

Usually the people making the requests were men. Rich men, sometimes Hollywood stars, since we’re located in Beverly Hills; sometimes athletes, sometimes politicians or princes or just your average millionaire or even wild-card billionaire who wants the fluffiest towels, a new designer bathrobe every day, private access to the hot tub, and a pretty woman to fluff the towels, not to mention fluff him if desired. I don’t mind even the most obscure requests, since at the end of the day, I know I’m helping brighten someone’s visit, and giving them the kind of full service no other hotel can match.

Sometimes it’s a couple desiring my services, the husband busy with meetings while the wife wants a guided tour of the best shops and spas, or a partner to hike mountains with. Maybe she’ll be dripping with diamonds, and ask for her food to be steamed and spiced to perfection, but with no fat. I’d sought out tattoo artists, feng shui specialists for long-term guests, nutritionists, manicurists, Japanese hair-straightening specialists, and more. But Claudine wanted something entirely different. “This is all confidential, right? You don’t have the room bugged or anything, do you?” she asked as I sat in a chair and watched her, my face professional but utterly curious. She was clearly not a lady who lunched—at least, not at any of the high-end see-and-be-seen restaurants my clients usually requested. Her elegance wasn’t about designer labels, but an air of both entitlement and sexual power; she radiated her body heat across the room, so I knew it was going to be one of the racier requests I’d handled even before she spoke.

“Of course not. Your privacy and satisfaction are of the utmost importance to us. To me.” I was surprised at her cautiousness. She was younger than I’d expected, not a wealthy widow or CEO, but a girl, really, who looked close to my age, twenty-eight. Her clothes were simple enough on the surface, though the jeans were designer, the white blouse clearly silk, the lacy white bra beneath it sturdily sculpted, showcasing her beautiful breasts, and the five-inch leopard-print heels were fierce, proclaiming her a woman not to mess with. There were no flowers in her hair or on her clothing; she was a woman who meant business, even though her business was of a kind only a woman like me could provide.

“So I booked this room because I’d heard from a friend that you will do anything to fulfill your clients’ wishes. I’ve been unable to find anyone who could meet my exact specifications, but you look like you’ll know where to find what I need. And my wish is for, well, an orgy. Tomorrow night. I want a room full of hot men and women to pleasure me and each other. Not professionals, just regular sexy people looking to have a good time. And I want you to join us. That’s a must. As a guest, off the clock. Confidentially of course—I must make sure not a word of this gets out,” Claudine finished with a Cheshire cat–like smile.

I’d just finished telling her I could get her anything she wanted, so I couldn’t refuse—not if I wanted to keep my job, not to mention my pride. Instead, I just stared at her, agog. I’d brought in ladies of the night, fetish specialists, pro subs and dominatrices. I’d had people ask me to personally pour them baths full of champagne, and I’d even sipped a little as a recent Oscar winner had extended his gorgeous body into his suite’s sumptuous tub while I’d popped cork after cork until he was fully submerged. He’d asked me to join him and while I was very, very tempted, I declined save for the luxury of pouring the chilled bubbly over his shoulders, then splashing the last few drops onto his face and indulging in one of the hottest kisses of my life. I was pretty sure he had a cell phone full of numbers of women who’d be more than willing to slip into his tub, so I’d left him to them.

I did, in fact, have the numbers of plenty of escorts and dominatrices handy, friends who specialized in high-end clients who I trusted implicitly for their discretion and ability to do their job well. But Claudine wanted real people, not professionals—except for, well, me. She wanted people who weren’t acting like they wanted to share her bed, but who would be overjoyed to worship her leopard-print heels, not to mention the rest of her. I could tell that she wasn’t so much a voyeur or exhibitionist as used to being the centerpiece of any encounter, erotic or otherwise; she’d never be so crass as to say “gang bang” but she wasn’t going to be satisfied unless all those hands and mouths were focused on her at some point in the night. I wasn’t sure if I was doing my job or relegating my duties when an image of Claudine with men nibbling on her toes and a woman buried between her legs flashed in my mind.

“Now, if we understand each other, I’m going to slip into a bath. I need to soak my feet.” Claudine smiled at me, her glistening red lips curving upward, her brown eyes dancing over my surprised face. She unbuttoned her blouse and dropped it on the bed, then casually reached behind her to unhook her bra, letting her large, clearly natural breasts hang heavily against her, before pausing to finish her instructions.

“I’d love a couple, and maybe some college kids, a girl with some tattoos, a man with a huge cock. A boy I can tie up. With you as my dessert,” Claudine added with a laugh before stepping toward me, placing her hand at the back of my head, and giving me a full, passionate kiss, as if that were something she were used to doing with her minions. Her mouth tasted minty and sweet, and her tongue was as possessive as the rest of her. It was the kind of kiss I was used to from men, not women. Her breasts pressed against me, begging me touch them. I was still in shock, but my pussy clearly wasn’t, because it responded to her touch, to her tongue darting against mine. She pulled away, then slithered out of her jeans and panties, before waving good-bye and sliding into the bathroom, where the sound of rushing water greeted me. I rubbed at my lips, hoping to remove the lipstick as quickly as I could.
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Read the rest of "Special Request" plus 19 others for just $4.84 when you buy this sexy hotness at Amazon. Other purchasing options (but as you'll see, Amazon's $4.84 deal is the cheapest around):
Kindle ebook
Nook ebook
IndieBound (locate a local bookstore that's selling it)
Google Play
Cleis Press

Table of Contents

Introduction: Sex Magic
Two-Way Ariel Graham
Selfish Donna George Storey
Air- Conditioning. Color TV. Live Mermaids. Anna Meadows
Proof of Desire Remittance Girl
Soundproof Emily Moreton
An Inspector Comes Suzanne Fox
Surrender with a Twist Suleikha Snyder
Unbound at the Holiday Inn Lily K. Cho
Travelodge Tess Justine Elyot
Business Expenses Elizabeth Silver
Return to the Nonchalant Inn Erobintica
The Deacon Tahira Iqbal
Love, Loud as a Bomb Steve Isaak
Night School Valerie Alexander
Feel So Dirty Andrea Dale
Please Come Again Tenille Brown
Dirty White Envelope Ellie Vokes
Tailgating at the Cedar Inn Delilah Devlin
Stiletto’s Big Score Michael A. Gonzales
Special Request Rachel Kramer Bussel

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Thursday, December 04, 2014

Sexy fat guys in erotica and real life

Not all of my erotica is realistic (most of it isn't, actually) or inspired by real life, but there are some types of characters I often return to, both because I enjoy them and I think it's important to showcase them. One is bisexuals, and I plan to write about more male bisexuals in my fiction soon, but I'd say many, possibly half, of my female characters are written as bisexual on some level. The other is fat guys. As you probably know, I'm in love with a fat man and generally lust after them (you can read more about it in "My Boyfriend's Fat" in my essay collection Sex & Cupcakes. I'll actually be on HuffPost Live today at 10:50 a.m. EST (will update with link) talking about my YouBeauty essay linked first above on what I've learned about body image and size from my fat boyfriend.


There's a funny thing that happens to me sometimes, especially with fiction: I forget exactly what I've written. If a year or more goes by between when I write a short story, send it off, and it gets published in print, I will recall the general outline of the story, but not the specific details. So when D.L. King invited me to read from my story "Big Bottom" in her new BDSM erotica anthology The Big Book of Domination: Erotic Fantasies at Purple Passion, I asked if I could have the book in my hands.

photo by Stacie Joy

As I was reading, I thought, I really like this. I sometimes surprise myself, especially with femdom stories, at how twisted and kinky they can get, at the ideas that pop into my head, at how funny they are, which you sometimes only hear when you read them out loud. I surprised myself, basically, and it made me want to write more stories like that, about fat men who have various sexual appetites and proudly own them. I also think it's something that helps make a story like this stand out. So here's a snippet of my story, inspired by Purple Passion and an actual set of talons I coveted there for years but, last I heard, are no longer available because the person who made them stopped making them:
from "Big Bottom" by Rachel Kramer Bussel

Gemma smiled at the crowd that had formed to watch the three of them. Kevin nestled his head against the side of the blonde’s neck, while she beamed a beatific smile. Before she began, Gemma leaned down to whisper in their ears. “If either of you need to stop, say ‘jagged.’” She liked the image that formed when she said the word—the jagged edge of a knife, something rough and uneven. She liked to get Kevin to a point where he was no longer sleek and smooth, but jagged in his own way, tumbling, tipping over, uncertain but clinging to that uncertainty because he always knew she’d take care of him. This was not their usual safeword, but a spontaneous one she gifted to them, a souvenir mouthful to ponder as she took her place.

Gemma started with her hand, which she always treated like the most delicate of instruments. She made sure her hands were soft to the touch, covering them at night with a special moisturizer and gloves. She paid meticulous attention to her manicure, needing her sharp red nails to signal to Kevin and the world just what kind of woman she was. She knelt down and found the most comfortable position with which to deliver her first smack. When she found it, she waited, counting silently to ten. She knew too many tops who rushed their scenes, so intent on their own dominant desires they forget that keeping a sub at their mercy is a torment in itself. Plus, making Kevin rest his hefty body on top of the blonde dreamboat gave her more time to admire the view. She could stare at his ass all day—forget bubble butts, give Gemma a solid, hairy, and, best of all, eager bottom like Kevin’s any day. There was more room to smack and stroke and squeeze and pinch, though she was well aware it would take some pretty firm smacks to jostle him against the blonde. She was up to the task.

When Gemma sensed that Kevin had started to relax an infinitesimal amount, she let loose with the first blow, digging her nails into his skin at the end for an added treat. “Thank you,” he murmured against the blonde’s neck, but the sound was drowned out by the next blow, which she’d already landed on the opposite cheek. Gemma heard whispers from the onlookers between each smack as she covered each cheek with successively harder blows. When her hand started to sting, Gemma decided to give Kevin his birthday present—or rather, give Kevin’s back the gift of her using his birthday present on him. “Your ass is going to get a break now,” she said to him. “But there’s more in store for it soon. I have something else planned for you. Are you both ready?”

Of course it was an unfair question. How could they be ready for something when they didn’t know what to expect? But they were subs, and good subs are always ready for anything, as long as they trust the person they’ve let control their fate. After getting a chorus of confirmation, Gemma took out the talons and allowed an eager boi from the crowd to place them on her dominant hand, her right.
You can get The Big Book of Domination at New York City's fabulous kinky store Purple Passion in Chelsea (211 W. 20th Street) as well as on Amazon, for Kindle (out December 30th), direct from publisher Cleis Press or at your local independent bookstore.

Not how I'd hold a whip if I was beating someone, FYI:

photo by Stacie Joy

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How to use your words to talk dirty and play with fantasy

Talking dirty is one of my favorite activities and the subject of this week's Philadelphia City Paper sex column, inspired by Ashley Manta and Katie Mack's Carnalcopia podcast on the same topic. They were both whipsmart and I could have gone on and on but print paper means short and sweet word counts. You really have to also listen to the podcast to get a sense of how different their experiences have been. I'll once again be totally shameless and say if you like the column (and or just like to talk dirty!) please click "like" at the top and pass it on to your readers. That means so much both to me personally and to show them readers like all the sexy stuff I'm putting out there. And tell them to let me know what they want to see in the column! Email rachelkb at with "City Paper" in the subject and any and all topic suggestions.

Carnalcopia logo - highres

Now is also a good time for me to plug CatalystCon, where I met both of them in person for the first time (I believe I played Cards Against Humanity with Katie last year) and found out about the podcast. The conference is so wonderful for exactly that: meeting people whose work you want to follow. I am someone who is bombarded with information online, and while I love staying on top of the news, getting out of my house (which I sometimes don't leave all day) and connecting with interesting people from all over the place with various backgrounds and approaches is invaluable, and not just if you write a sex column and are on the lookout for ideas. I am a writer so should have the perfect words to describe the magic of the conference, and maybe I will when it's not before six a.m. and I haven't had coffee yet, but I will tell you that every time I go I learn many things and meet people I wish I could chat with beyond a weekend, and I think that's saying something.

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Tuesday, December 02, 2014

You can go your own way with book marketing and not feel guilty

The title of this post is as much as message to me as anyone else reading this, and applies beyond marketing. I'm one of those people who's occasionally confident in myself, but is far more often convinced that everyone else knows what they're doing far more than I do. It follows that if I see someone publishing a newsletter or promoting a book or writing in a certain style that's different from mine, their way is automatically more effective/smarter/better and I should follow in their footsteps. It's funny because this is in no way advice I would give to anyone about writing (or life), but in my own twisted mind, that's far too often what makes sense.

But sometimes I am willing to take risks and potentially fail and know that it's okay. I had this idea that I wanted to give away my new book Sex & Cupcakes to newsletter readers as a thank you on Cyber Monday. I believe strongly in this book and hope to write more nonfiction in book form so it seemed like a good way to encourage people to check the book out. But rather than me just sending it to them, I said that if they bought it from Amazon, I'd refund them the $4.99 fee via PayPal.

My boyfriend didn't like the idea. He thought it was pointless (I'm paraphrasing). Me? I was trying to synthesize some of the information I've gleaned by marketing experts like Tim Grahl, author of Your First 1000 Copies. Also, I was trying to just see what happened. To correspond with new people. To give someone a taste of my work who may or may not ever read that book or anything else. Potentially, over 1,600 people could have taken advantage of the offer and I'd have been very screwed.

My point is, I did it. Even with two major mistakes in two newsletters. It felt great to just hit send, even though I forgot a few links I wanted to include and made the newsletter far longer than I'd intended. My biggest takeaway is that whether my idea "worked" or not, I'm happy I did it. I wanted to try it and it made sense to do it on Cyber Monday, which was also the start of a new month. I'd been feeling guilty for skipping sending one out in November, for not publicizing my book party more broadly.

I read a post by Seth Godin today which said in part: "As marketing decentralizes and more of us work with less supervision (and more upside when we find our own path) reliance on the external fails us." In many ways, I operate independently. I don't have a traditional boss, I earn a living from various sources, I work at home alone, I decide how much time and money and energy to devote to promoting my books, even though I never know in advance if it will yield any results. But in other ways, as I mentioned above, I'm not independent at all. I'm the opposite. I play down my own ideas to myself so often it's truly ridiculous.

The long-term results remain to be seen, but when I woke up in the middle of the night, I thought a) that it's freezing and b) that I'm happy with my little experiment, because this is what I saw on Amazon:

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Who knows what it "means" in terms of numbers? I don't even know if I'll manage to earn out my advance in 2015, though that's my goal, sooner rather than later. All I know is it made me smile, made me feel like maybe my idea wasn't so dumb after all. I'm working on doubting myself less. It's one of those things I sometimes have to force by telling myself if I'm lucky like seemingly everyone else I know and get to have a kid or two, I don't want to model that kind of permanent doubt. It's not that I'd tell them to assume they're always right, but to consider their ideas as worthy as anyone else's. And now I have to work on taking my own fictional mom advice.

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Registration is now open for my next 4-week LitReactor online erotica writing class starting February 12th

I'll be posting about all the reasons I am now smitten with online teaching, which I discovered in October and November with my first online erotica writing class for LitReactor, but wanted to let you know that I'm teaching a new workshop starting February 12th, and registration is now open. This one is also going to be capped at 16 people, and allows users to log in at any time, using the username of their choice, and access all the material for the class. For this one, I gave 4 written lectures, plus included insider information directly from editors at erotica publishing houses about what they're looking for right now and Q&As with authors and editors. I'll be updating that information and enhancing it to provide even more information. And right there is one amazing thing online classes have that in-person ones don't: if a student asks a question and I don't know the answer, I can ask someone who does, because we're there for four weeks.

That class has already produced one story sale: "Rain Dog" by LN Bey to Laura Antoniou for her anthology No Safewords II: A Marketplace Fan Fiction Collection, out in 2015 from Circlet Press. It's such a wonderful opportunity, but I will say it's also a time commitment if you want to get the most out of it, as you'll be asked to produce four short stories over four weeks. If you have any questions about the class, please email me at rachelkramerbussel at with "LitReactor" in the subject line. The last one sold out and I expect this one to as well, so if you're thinking of signing up, I advise you not to wait until the last minute. I also recommend checking out LitReactor, where they've got spirited message boards and numerous articles about various aspects of writing. You can also follow them @LitReactor on Twitter. FYI, they didn't ask me to add that part or anything. I've just been incredibly impressed with how their classes are structured, making everything easy to find and use, as well as how wide-ranging the users' interests are.


Monday, December 01, 2014

One of those days, or Cyber Monday is stressing me out

This morning, in my misguided attempt to get my newsletter out fast, I wrote "today, Monday, November 30th." I didn't realize it until a reader told me, so then I resent it with the correct date, only to have another reader point out that I had put a decidedly non-sex-positive book I was buying for research in the link I'd meant to use to share this video of me talking about sex writing. That's pretty much how my day's been going.

But, unlike the bulk of the weekend, I feel inspired and energized. Why? Because even though I had a few stumbling blocks, I did put work out there. I got helpful feedback from readers (thank you!) who are taking advantage of my free book offer. (Want to be up on the latest specials in my newsletter? Sign up at I sent some writing out to editors, soon to be out in the world. Some of it wasn't what I'd planned; I changed column topics at the last minute to give me more time to ponder the other one.

I have been stumped the last few days trying to figure out how to post to This, a very cool site that's in beta and is perfect for people like me, who try to do a million things at once. It's actually pretty easy, but even though I'm glued to my phone or laptop most of the time, I get frustrated when I can't figure out things instantly. Today I did, so that was a victory (this was the link I shared). It works somewhat like Twitter or Facebook, where you can share things with followers, but unlike those, you can only share links, and only one per day. It's a great way to see what people are reading and keep up with articles you may or may not find in your regular readings. Want an invite? I've got 5 of them. Email me at rachelkb at with "This" in the subject line and I'll send them to the first 5 who respond.

Which brings me to Cyber Monday. I was going to offer a deal today, but then I checked my inbox and was so utterly overwhelmed by seemingly hundreds of neverending emails about deals that I just couldn't do it. I feel bad enough that I did the spam-like thing of sending two newsletters in one morning. Last night, knowing that the Amazon 30% off coupon code was about to expire, I spent at least an hour browsing for books, because I felt like I "had" to use the code. Because isn't that what coupons are for? To be used? To not do so would be almost like wasting money.

Yes, that is not a logical way of thinking about shopping or bargains or money, but it's one that's deeply ingrained in me. I'm working on it, and on breaking things down into smaller, more manageable chunks. Because I have so many ideas and plans and stories I want to share, and will be soon. Today, though, I'm thankful it's December, which means I can get cracking on all the holiday cards I've amassed, I only have to wait a few more weeks to give my boyfriend his holiday presents, and I can put the crazy (good crazy and bad crazy, but overall pretty much madness) month of November behind me.

I did succumb, even though I've got lots of books to read for business and pleasure, and got Sarah MacLean's latest historical romance, Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover, the last in her Rules of Scoundrels series, featuring a woman in pants!