Email: rachelkramerbussel at


Lusty Lady

Watch me talk about my debut as an author, Sex & Cupcakes: A Juicy Collection of Essays, in this Q&A with my publisher Thought Catalog Books

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.