Tag Archive | eden connor

The Zodiac Club & an Anthology Call!

 The Zodiac Club is now available on Smashwords and Amazon.com! Have a click, have a read and hopefully enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it!

“If you’re reading this, then you want to know about the Zodiac Club. The dark heart of Chicago, the apotheosis of sin…Members of the Zodiac Club are sworn to secrecy, and those lucky few don’t want to be cast out of Paradise.”

Meet Gemini: rake, scoundrel, modern-day Puck and leader of a House in a secret society known as The Zodiac Club. Gemini has earned a reputation for being a trouble-maker and in this debut story, he proves to one unwary woman just how well that reputation is deserved.

With elements of dominance and submission, secret sex-themed societies, scandalous public fucking, creative punishment and revenge, The Zodiac Club is not for the faint of heart…

They wouldn’t want it any other way.

I think my personal favorite character in this one is Sagittarius, or Sage. Not a lady I’d want to offend and certainly the type of woman I’ve always daydreamed about being, but never had the gumption for. She is, in short, formidable. I almost feel sorry for Gemini, for what’s coming his way. Almost.

In other news!

The lovely Eden Connor continues her interview series with author Alessia Brio. Eden has also put out a call for submissions for a transgressive erotica anthology, which is pretty damn exciting.

You can find the site right here. Here’s what she’s looking for:

Transgressive erotica is being targeted.
Corporate entities seek to suppress legal content. To limit where your imagination may go, and which piece of plastic your reader may use in order to follow.
The ‘Great Smut Purge of 2012′, instigated by corporate morality, has caused vendors to pull legal content from their digital shelves. There indeed may be titles among them with no redeeming value, titles that cross the line between legal content and illegal content. But shelved next to those are stories of merit and value, employing the same transgressional themes.
Like Lolita. Like The Beauty Series by Anne Rice. Like many of the ‘classics which have inspired you.
Like yours.
The challenge:
Write a story using any transgressional theme you choose.
Get as gritty as you need to to grind down to the pure truth of human sexuality embedded in your story.
Show the critics and moralists why your sub-genre deserves amnesty.
There will be no word limit. Any length story will be considered.
But make each word count.
Multiple submissions will be considered.
Deadline for submission: May 28th, 2012.
Publisher: TBD
All authors with accepted stories will be asked to collaborate on title and cover art.

Click on the link for further details, including where to send your submission if you are interested.


Princess Leia on a Chain

It’s hard to believe it’s only been a month and a half since I leaped into the indie publishing scene. It’s been a busy month and a half and much of it has been taken up with PayPal’s move to put Baby in the corner.

I think they’ve seen by now that no one puts Baby in the corner.

Eden Connor has been doing a terrific series of interviews over on her blog, titled Dirty Mind vs. Debit Cards. Thus far, she’s interviewed a number of excellent authors: Remittance Girl, Sessha Batto, and Anjasa.

A few days back I mentioned I’d also volunteered to be involved in the interview series. Because I am a dork, instead of waiting to actually be interviewed, I went ahead and wrote an essay. Eden was kind enough to indulge my excitement at participating and posted it today. You can read it in its entirety here.

Warning: I get up close and personal with my disclosures, and I do apologize if I make anyone uncomfortable because of it. If you haven’t had your morning coffee yet, I will understand if you wait to read.

More authors are to come. Eden has been posting one a day, and she’s still looking for others who are willing to discuss their experience in this. Clicky if you’re interested in either reading or participating.

In unrelated news, pardon me as I glee over breaking the 20 sales mark. A month and two weeks, and I’m at 21 total sales! Eeee!

Very small potatoes, I know, but those are 21 votes of confidence to keep me going. Thank you and thank you and thank you, you are awesome. The Zodiac Club should be up tonight or tomorrow; I just need to figure out a blurb for it.

You may have noticed blurbs are not my forte.

Saturday Ramblings

I want to give a shout out to both Eden Connor and Remittance Girl for their blogging and actions in the past week. A lot of people have weighed in with some excellent thoughts and calls to action, but these two have stood out to me.

Remittance Girl has set up a home blog for anyone affected by the recent banning, and anyone who would like to join in the movement to get PayPal to wake the hell up. Check it out, you know you want to:

Eden Connor has put out a call for authors who would like to join a dark anthology of stories on the subjects banned by PayPal. You can contact her through her blog if you’re interested; I’ve already signed up! She’s also looking for guest bloggers who are open to discussing the titles they’ve had yanked, why they wrote them, why they feel erotica is important and how this has affected them. I’ve signed up for this as well so keep an eye out!

Mark Coker sent out an email this morning with recent Smashwords news. This included updates about Baker & Taylor signing on as a distributor and Read an E-Book Week kicking off on Sunday. More pertinent to recent events, he also had this to say about PayPal:

In case you haven’t heard, about two weeks ago, PayPal contacted Smashwords and
gave us a surprise ultimatum: Remove all titles containing bestiality, rape
or incest, otherwise they threatened to deactivate our PayPal account. We engaged
them in discussions and on Monday they gave us a temporary reprieve as we continue
to work in good faith to find a suitable solution.

PayPal tells us that their crackdown is necessary so that they can remain in
compliance with the requirements of the banks and credit card associations (likely
Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, though they didn’t mention them
by name).

Last Friday, I sent the following email to our erotica authors and publishers:
https://www.smashwords.com/press/release/27 Then on Monday, I issued an update,
and announced we would delay enforcement of PayPal’s guidelines so we and PayPal
could continue our discussions: https://www.smashwords.com/press/release/28


PayPal is asking us to censor legal fiction. Regardless of how one views topics
of rape, bestiality and incest, these topics are pervasive in mainstream fiction.
We believe this crackdown is really targeting erotica writers. This is unfair,
and it marks a slippery slope. We don’t want credit card companies or financial
institutions telling our authors what they can write and what readers can read.
Fiction is fantasy. It’s not real. It’s legal.


There’s no easy solution. Legally, PayPal and the credit card companies probably
have the right to decide how their services are used. Unfortunately, since they’re
the moneyrunners, they control the oxygen that feeds digital commerce.

Many Smashwords authors have suggested we find a different payment processor.
That’s not a good long term solution, because if credit card companies are behind
this, they’ll eventually force crackdowns elsewhere. PayPal works well for us.
In addition to running all credit card processing at the Smashwords.com store,
PayPal is how we pay all our authors outside the U.S. My conversations with
PayPal are ongoing and have been productive, yet I have no illusion that the
road ahead will be simple, or that the outcome will be favorable.


Independent advocacy groups are considering taking on the PayPal censorship case.
I’m supporting the development of this loose-knit coalition of like-minded groups
who believe that censorship of legal fiction should not be allowed. We will grow
the coalition. Each group will have its own voice and tactics I’m working with
them because we share a common cause to protect books from censorship. Earlier
today I had conversations with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), The
American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) and the National
Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC). I briefed them on the Smashwords/PayPal
situation, explained the adverse affect this crackdown will have on some of our
authors and customers, and shared my intention to continue working with PayPal
in a positive manner to move the discussion forward.

The EFF blogged about the issue a few days ago: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/02/legal-censorship-paypal-makes-habit-deciding-what-users-can-read
Today, ABFFE and NCAC issued a press release: http://www.scribd.com/doc/83549049/NCAC-ABFFE-Letter-To-PayPal-eBay-re-Ebook-Refusal-2012

I will not be on the streets with torch in hand calling for PayPal’s head, but
I will encourage interested parties to get involved and speak their piece. This
is where you come in…


Although erotica authors are being targeted, this is an issue that should concern
all indie authors. It affects indies disproportionately because indies are the
ones pushing the boundaries of fiction. Indies are the ones out there publishing
without the (fading) protective patina of a “traditional publisher” to lend them
legitimacy. We indies only have each other.

Several Smashwords authors have contacted me to stress that this censorship affects
women disproportionately. Women write a lot of the erotica, and they’re also
the primary consumers of erotica. They’re also the primary consumers of mainstream
romance, which could also come under threat if PayPal and the credit card companies
were to overly enforce their too-broad and too-nebulous obsenity clauses (I think
this is unlikely, but at the same time, why would dubious consent be okay in
mainstream romance but not okay in erotica? If your write paranormal, can your
were-creatures not get it on with one another, or is that bestiality? The insanity
needs to stop here. These are not questions an author, publisher or distributor
of legal fiction should have to answer.).

All writers and their readers should stand up and voice their opposition to financial
services companies censoring books. Authors should have the freedom to publish
legal fiction, and readers should have the freedom to read what they want.

These corporations need to hear from you. Pick up the phone and call them.
Email them. Start petitions. Sign petitions. Blog your opposition to censorship.
Encourage your readers to do the same. Pass the word among your social networks.
Contact your favorite bloggers and encourage them to follow this story. Contact
your local newspaper and offer to let them interview you so they can hear a local
author’s perspective on this story of international significance. If you have
connections to mainstream media, encourage them to pick up on the story. Encourage
them to call the credit card companies and pose this simple question, “PayPal
says they’re trying to enforce the policies of credit card companies. Why are
you censoring legal fiction?”

Below are links to the companies waiting to hear from you. Click the link and
you’ll find their phone numbers, executive names and postal mailing addresses.
Be polite, respectful and professional, and encourage your friends and followers
to do the same. Let them know you want them out of the business of censoring
legal fiction.

Tell the credit card companies you want them to give PayPal permission to sell
your ebooks without censorship or discrimination. Let them know that PayPal’s
policies are out of step with the major online ebook retailers who already accept
your books as they are. Address your calls, emails (if you can find the email)
and paper letters (yes paper!) to the executives. Post open letters to them
on your blog, then tweet and Facebook hyperlinks to your letters. Force the
credit card companies to join the discussion about censorship. And yes, express
your feelings and opinions to PayPal as well. Don’t scream at them. Ask them
to work on your behalf to protect you and your readers from censorship. Tell
them how their proposed censorship will harm you and your fellow writers.


American Express:



Ebay (owns PayPal):

Starting Sunday, if our email systems can handle it, we will send out an email
to several hundred thousand registered Smashwords members who are opted in to
receive occasional Smashwords service updates. The email will combine Read an
Ebook Week with the censorship call to action. Let’s start a little fire, shall

Thank you for your continuing support of Smashwords. With your help, we can
move mountains.

Best wishes,


And finally my own little update!

I would like to say thank you to the readers who’ve made the past week the best one yet for my stories. I have no illusions about either my visibility or my ability as a writer of erotica yet, but each sale encourages me to continue and improve.

Stories currently in the works are Zodiac (title under consideration), a dark and gritty exploration of the Zodiac Club, described as “the dark heart of Chicago, the apotheosis of sin”. The main character is Gemini, who is a rake, a scoundrel, a modern-day Puck who enjoys pushing boundaries. It’s going to have elements of public sex, BDSM and forced sex, which readers seemed to appreciate in The Perfect Belt (currently my best seller). I’m also working on a m/m story (my first!) called Losing It about a man struggling against his sexuality who finds what he’s been denying himself in the arms of the private detective his fiancee hired to follow him around.

Yes, two stories in the chute at once! Double your pleasure! Are you excited? I’m excited. So much to do, so much to look forward to! And as upsetting as recent events have been, so much more has come out of this– there are opportunities here for authors and readers both to not only increase their presence but to establish themselves as legitimate. And why not?

We are.