Email: rachelkramerbussel at gmail.com



 

Lusty Lady

BLOG OF RACHEL KRAMER BUSSEL
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

Monday, March 02, 2015

When The Dress comes to life as a horny gay billionaire, you get this hilarious erotica

So of course I reviewed it for Thought Catalog. Thanks Chuck Tingle for writing Pounded By The Gay Color Changing Dress and livening up my morning. I'm still Team White and Gold, but this ebook really took the whole thing to ridiculous new heights.

poundedbythedresscover

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Read my 91-year-old grandfather's Washington Post essay about veterans and PTSD

I could not be prouder that my 91-year-old ex-POW grandfather published his essay "Meet the 91-year-old whose wartime PTSD makes him the perfect guide for today’s veterans" yesterday in the Washington Post. Please read it and, if you're so inclined, share it. It's brave and honest and offers what I've long told him is a unique perspective as someone with PTSD from WWII who is using his history to help modern veterans.

normanwapofeb27

Labels: , , ,

Friday, February 27, 2015

I'm teaching Erotica and Sex Writing in one month, March 27th, at CatalystCon

Quick post to remind you that at CatalystCon East in Arlington, Virginia, held March 27-29, I'll be teaching my three-hour writing workshops on erotica and nonfiction sex writing (click here to register), drawing from my 15 years of writing erotica and editing over 50 anthologies, and close to that many writing sex essays, sex columns for the likes of The Village Voice, Penthouse, The Frisky and now, Philadelphia City Paper and DAME, along with pieces for publications such as Cosmopolitan, Elle.com, Glamour, Harper's Bazaar, Salon, Slate, Time.com and others. We will go in depth in each class and you will also get resources and market listings. Any questions? Email me at rachelkb at gmail.com with "Catalyst" in the subject line. I'm thrilled to connect with and meet so many people again at Catalyst, where I'll also be on the opening keynote panel, moderating a panel on sharing your sex life, and my books will be for sale by Red Emma's.

This all looks prettier on the CatalystCon site but I'm just doing a quick copy and paste:

Writing Workshops with Rachel Kramer Bussel

Erotica 101


Friday, March 27, 2015 9:15am-12:15pm
In this three hour workshop Rachel Kramer Bussel, professional erotica author and editor of over 50 erotica anthologies, such as The Big Book of Orgasms, Cheeky Spanking Stories and Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission, will take you through the ins and outs of modern erotic writing. Learn how to get started, find your voice, and write against type. You’ll discover how to incorporate everyday scenarios as well as outlandish fantasies into your writing, and make them fit for particular magazines and anthologies. The class will also cover branding yourself as a writer, using and selecting a good pseudonym, and using social media to promote your work and do outreach. She’ll also talk about submitting your work and keeping up with the thriving erotica market, including anthologies, ebooks, magazines and websites. Please bring paper and writing implements or a laptop to use for in class writing exercises. A bibliography with erotica resources will be provided.

This class will take place on Friday, March 27, 2015 at the CatalystCon host hotel. You must purchase a ticket to this workshop separately from CatalystCon on the registration page. Register here.

Pricing: $45

Note: Student discount does not apply to this workshop.

Sex Writing 101

Friday, March 27, 2015 1:30pm-4:30pm
In this three hour workshop, writer and editor Rachel Kramer Bussel will cover all you need to know about writing about sex, including blogging, first-person essays and journalism. You’ll learn how to ethically write about your love life, what editors are looking for, where to find experts on sexuality topics, and how to stay abreast of current sex news. Whether you’re looking to write a sex blog, column, articles or books, you’ll find out how to pitch, how much money you can expect to make, and how to maximize your editorial opportunities. The class will also cover branding yourself as a writer, using and selecting a good pseudonym, using social media to promote your work and do outreach, and how to pitch stories. Rachel has been a sex columnist for The Village Voice, Penthouse and The Frisky, and has written about sexuality for Cosmopolitan, The Daily Beast, Glamour, Inked, Salon, xoJane and many other publications. A resource list covering markets for sex-related pieces will be provided.

This class will take place on Friday, March 27, 2015 at the CatalystCon host hotel. You must purchase a ticket to this workshop separately from CatalystCon on the registration page. Register here.

Pricing: $45

Note: Student discount code does not apply to this workshop.

Special pricing for both workshops: $79

**Attendees who would like the opportunity to get feedback from Rachel on one piece of their own writing (3,000 words or less), to be submitted prior to the workshop can purchase this as an add on to either of the above workshops. Fee: $20

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Philadelphia dominatrix profile in this week's Philadelphia City Paper sex column

For my Philadelphia City Paper sex column this week, I profiled Philadelphia dominatrix Domina Devorah, talking about what her clients are like, favorite sessions, feminism and more. As always, especially since this is a weekly column, I welcome topic suggestions of people, pop culture news, events, fetishes, issues, etc. for future columns at rachelkb at gmail.com with "City Paper" in the subject line.

devorahcolumn
above photo by brickxbirch

And I forgot to share how happy I am that last week's pubic hair/Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue column made it onto the cover!

citypapercoverfeb19

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Why I don't have time to blog about Blogger shutting down sex blogs

I do know that this blog could likely disappear very soon with Blogger's purge of sex blogs happening soon. I don't even really think I'd call it a sex blog, more of a personal/professional/whatever I'm thinking blog, but I know there has been nudity and other things that I'm sure would be against Google policy. (Do follow @violetblue on Twitter for essential postings about this, and see her original reporting on it. She's also got great advice about switching from Blogger to another host.)

To be honest, as much as politically I think what Google is doing is crazy and bizarre, personally, I haven't had much time to post on this blog anyway. I wish I did, but income-generating work has taken precedent, especially now when I am teaching my LitReactor class, promoting my next one in May and other events, prepping for CatalysCon, planning to make a splash with my second favorite anthology of mine, Come Again: Sex Toy Erotica (sorry, The Big Book of Orgasms will always be my favorite), writing two sex columns and working on pieces for new for me publications, sadly, blogging has had to go by the wayside. Since I'm someone who right now feels like I'm working all the time, I don't anticipate that changing any time soon. TL:DR - I'm a little overwhelmed right now. Which is fine, but just doesn't leave much room for what feels less important than actual work deadlines. I'm trying to figure out how to better manage my time, but sometimes, you just have to work around the clock, and I'm grateful and honored to have the work to do so, because as a freelancer, I never know when any of my gigs will end.

So this blog may very soon go poof and disappear. My hope is that I can back it up. March is an incredibly busy month for me so I don't know that I will have time to truly look into an alternative, but if you find one day that this URL doesn't work, you can always find me on Twitter @raquelita, on Tumblr and via my newsletter. I'll have lots more writing to share very soon.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Sex and making babies in my DAME column

I'm very proud of my latest DAME Shameless Sex column; I went over my usual word count (with permission) because my interviewees had so many fascinating things to say about sex for pleasure vs. sex for procreation. Thank you to everyone who spoke to me for this. I learned a lot! My working title was "When Sex Is For Making Babies" but I like the final one too: "Doing It Like It's Your Job." And yes, I know plenty of non-male/female couples work on having babies, but as I said, this column was already way too long, so I had to limit it somewhere. I've been thinking about this topic ever since I saw the play Giant Box of Porn last summer at Capital Fringe; the reason why is the opening of the column.

Damemakingbabies

Labels: , , , , , , ,

My Biggest Problem With Fifty Shades Of Grey, The Movie

My week is busy, to put it beyond mildly, so here's my latest for Thought Catalog, an overdue take on the movie of the moment: "My Biggest Problem With Fifty Shades Of Grey, The Movie."

Labels: , ,

Free sex toy erotica book offer ends March 15, 2015

Just a heads up that in order to keep my mailing manageable, I've set March 15, 2015 as the cutoff for requests for free copies of Come Again: Sex Toy Erotica for U.S. Amazon.com reviewers (or when I reach 100 requests). And yes, if I were a rich lady, I could send these to anyone anywhere in the world, but I'm not, so I have to limit this to those in the United States. The bonus is you get the book before it's in stores, and will have two months to review it (you should receive yours by the end of March, and I'm asking people to post their reviews by the end of May, aka Masturbation Month).

So get your requests in if you want this free book and are up for posting a review on Amazon. I'm working on a post about all the sex toys that are in the book, but I can tell you there are a few fictional ones as well as jangling nipple clamps, remote controlled vibrators, dildos, metal claws, a thigh harness, a sex doll and much more!

comeagaincover

Here's how to request your free book and more about this hot anthology:

1. By March 15, 2015, email sextoyantho at gmail.com with "Amazon" in the subject line AND your name, U.S. mailing address and URL of a previous Amazon.com review, which will look like this: http://www.amazon.com/review/RZR12JEVAAK0Z/ref=cm_cr_dp_title?ie=UTF8&ASIN=0062076000&nodeID=283155&store=books. Click on your review's title and then copy and paste the URL for it. If you can't do this, you can send the URL of your Amazon profile which has a link to your review(s).

2. I will reply to everyone, either confirming you are one of the first 100, or letting you know that you're not (and I will update this post once the 100 have been spoken for).

3. For the first 100, once you receive your book, please post an honest review on Amazon.com by May 31st.

4. That's it! Some other ways to follow and support the book: @comeagainbook on Twitter, our Facebook page and Tumblr. Come Again is also on Goodreads, where you can mark that you want to read it (thank you!) and rate it.

Email sextoyantho at gmail.com with any questions and thank you for reading.

Here's more information about Come Again: Sex Toy Erotica:

Table of contents and introduction:

Dare You To Jillian Boyd
The Prototype Malin James
Icy Bed J. Crichton
Surprise Katya Harris
The Superman Dildo E. Bellamy
Lost and Pounded Zee Giovanni
In the Pink Rob Rosen
Dalia’s Toy Corrine A. Silver
Vegetable Love Susan St. Aubin
The Cure for the Common Lay Valerie Alexander
Claws Out Rachel Kramer Bussel
Sex Kitten Errica Liekos
Standard of Care Sybil Rush
Bikery Oliver Hollandaize
Pencil Dick Kathleen Delaney-Adams
A Tale of Two Toys Chris Komodo
Prickles Elizabeth Coldwell
Gift Dena Hankins
Get Your Rocks Off Jocelyn Dex
Byrd and the Bees Kamala St. Deeds
The Secret Shopper Kitten Boheme
Must Love Dolls Giselle Renarde
Sex Sells Adriana Ravenlust
My Life as a Vibrator Livia Ellis

Introduction: Sex Toys Are Everywhere

I love sex toys, both the kinds you can find in sex shops and the kinds you can find pretty much anywhere. Because the truth is, anything can become a sex toy in the right hands, and Come Again proves that.

In these pages, you’ll read about vibrators, butt plugs, strap-on harnesses, dildos, nipple clamps, a sex doll and even a Superman dildo. But you’ll also read about characters so smitten with sex toys they’re willing to go to great lengths to create their own, whether it’s a special bike designed to make pedaling a woman’s favorite sport (in “The Bikery,” by Oliver Hollandaize) or an inflatable ball on a stick (as in “The Prototype,” by Malin James). Perhaps in the future, we’ll have sex toys like the orgasm machine being peddled in “Sex Sells,” by Adriana Ravenlust, or the Simulsphere that provides “The Cure for the Common Lay,” which Valerie Alexander so masterfully serves up.

Sex toys are a perfect complement to a kinky relationship, offering one person the power to control how the other uses his or her toys. In “The Secret Shopper,” by Kitten Boheme, the act of shopping takes on an extremely risqué overtone, while in “Sex Kitten,” by Errica Liekos, a tail and a transgression provide the perfect entrée to a hot scene.

Toys are a wonderful way for couples to double the fun, and that concept is taken to humorous and wonderful heights in “A Tale of Two Toys,” by Chris Komodo, in which the popularity of remote-control vibrators is celebrated. I was awed by the way Giselle Renarde detailed the romance, wonder and pleasure a Japanese sex doll brings to a couple sharing her as they expand their sexual repertoire. Are Honor and Tom having a threesome with Natsuki? In their own special way, yes indeed. Dena Hankins’s “Gift” shows that you’re never too old to explore a new toy.

Nature lovers will appreciate the ingenuity of “Vegetable Love,” by Susan St. Aubin and “Get Your Rocks Off,” by Jocelyn Dex, and I know I’ll be thinking about J. Crichton’s “Icy Bed” every time I take out ice cubes from my freezer.

You’ll find proud toy users and those whose private pleasures wind up being exposed in stories like “Dare You To,” by Jillian Boyd, where the jangling of nipple clamp bells is a little too loud for comfort, and “In the Pink,” by Rob Rosen, in which a masturbatory moment in the office turns into some hands-on sex education.

All of these stories celebrate sex toys for the ways they can shake up a routine, enhance an orgasm, transform an identity or simply add new delights to your sex life. Once you’re done reading, I’m pretty sure, like me, you’ll start seeing sex toys—or at least, potential sex toys—everywhere you go!

Rachel Kramer Bussel
Red Bank, New Jersey

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I still love New York, even in freezing cold winter

Even though I believe moving out of New York and living in New Jersey has been why I'm doing well this year in my freelance writing career, I will always love New York and all that it has to offer. I still go there to get my pubic hair waxed and for manicures and pedicures, because I'm loyal and the prices are much cheaper. I go there for theater and food and friends. Yesterday I sat in a cozy theater on St. Mark's Place and escaped the cold for 45 minutes and was incredibly impressed; I'll be writing more about the show I saw, Cootie Catcher by Lucas Brooks, in next week's sex column. I loved New York because it is always full of the unexpected. I was craving dumplings, but Mimi Cheng's is closed on Mondays and I didn't have time to wait at other places. On my walk from the theater to the subway, I found a food truck that sold me 5 steaming hot spicy vegetable dumplings for just $3.50. I ate them as I shivered my way to the train.

Since I can't show you how cold it was, I will share a few snapshots from yesterday. I'm now back home and on deadline and very happy to have a warm office from which to do my work.

stained-glass

Pretty stained glass on a school; the kids playing nearby seemed oblivious to the cold. I wasn't.

stickysfingerjoint

Sticky's Finger Joint is an actual chicken finger restaurant on 8th Street in Manhattan.

uphueshearts

I discovered the artwork of Chris Uphues when I was living in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and going to my favorite coffeeshop, Gimme Coffee, every day (I still miss that place and look forward to stopping in when I'm in the neighborhood March 14th for the Dirty Diaries screening at Spectacle Theater). His art was on the wall and I bought one of his heart paintings and have it hanging on my bedroom wall. I had forgotten he was doing a collaboration with Ann Taylor Loft. I went there to look around and was so pleased to find his window display. They're selling his heart t-shirt too.

Finally, at Penn Station, I had a little time to kill before my train. I read the odd New York magazine story about Ellora's Cave, even more oddly called "Amazon's Erotica Problem" on the cover (actual title: "Did Amazon Sink the Queen of Online Erotica?") when really it's about EC blaming Amazon for their low sales. I also deeply coveted both of these magazines, but in my efforts to no longer be such a good hoarder/bad girlfriend, I didn't buy either.

timeoutnysleaterkinney

starkendalljenner

Labels: , , ,

Want knitting bondage erotica? Best Bondage Erotica 2015 has it!

Over on the book's Tumblr, I've been posting excerpts from Best Bondage Erotica 2015 in the order they appear in the book, and today I got to a personal favorite, knitting bondage erotica story "Trinity's New Hobby" by Lucy Felthouse. This is my fifth year editing the Best Bondage Erotica series, so as you can imagine, I've read hundreds of bondage stories, and while I love the topic, sometimes even when you do what you love, it can feel monotonous. Then I'll get a story like this one and it will blow me away with its fun tone, creativity and use of a new implement I had never considered before. That, in addition to publishing authors new to the genre, is my editorial pride and joy.

I hope you'll check out the excerpts and the book!

BBE15cover

To read “Trinity's New Hobby” plus all the other stories in Best Bondage Erotica 2015, buy it from::

Amazon

Kindle ebook

Amazon UK

Kindle UK

Bn.com

Nook ebook

Kobo

Books-a-Million

Powell’s

IndieBound (find your local independent bookstore)

iTunes

Cleis Press

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Sunday, February 22, 2015

New Jersey is the secret of my success

It's a rare still moment where I am enjoying the quiet of a snowy Sunday morning, before breakfast, before coffee even, before shoveling. I've been working a lot, almost around the clock. Not all the time, but enough that the rhythm of my workdays blends into my nights, which I know is not sustainable in the long term, but is how things are going the next few weeks between lots of writing deadlines, getting the book I am extremely excited about, Come Again: Sex Toy Erotica proofread and now working on promotions and events for it, and teaching my current LitReactor class. It's such a huge and welcome change from last year, when I was scrambling for work, but I think the other big difference is that this year, I am embracing being at home.

Last year I was still adjusting to life in suburbia and half thought I still lived in New York. I took the fact that I could take a close to hour and a half almost $30 train into the Big Apple to mean that I should. This year, I'm trying to be very sparing in my visits. Last Monday, I did brave the cold to head to Brooklyn for a reading at BookCourt, which was lovely and had a thoughtful discussion, but it made me realize that I probably will not say yes to readings in January or February in the future. It was a little too cold for most people to come out, which is totally understandable. I'm going into New York tomorrow to see the play Cootie Catcher to write about it for my Philadelphia City Paper column, and then am speaking on March 14th in my old neighborhood of Williamsburg as part of a screening of the porn film Dirty Diaries. In March I'll also be traveling, once for pleasure, and then a string of events for work in Richmond, Charlottesville, Baltimore and Arlington.

I used to do things like that without considering what it would cost in terms of money or time. Now, I have to consider every trip, even ones to "the city," and the result has meant I mainly choose to stay home, which not only saves money, but frees up my time to think and plot and plan and pitch and write and edit. Maybe some people can do those in a spare hour or two here and there, but for me, I like to have a few hours before and after what I'm supposed to be doing to give myself that freedom to focus. Maybe I won't always have that time (if I get the only thing I truly want in this universe, I hope to have far far less free time), but for now, I do and it's been such a blessing. This year has brought so many unexpectedly wonderful opportunities, and I credit them to not incessantly racing away from home, racing off to do this, that and the other thing. It's taught me to both value my time and money and to value myself, and that by saying no more than I used to, I'm saying yes to my long-term goals.

This is very different from how I used to think and act. I used to say yes to everything because I was so afraid there wouldn't be other opportunities. I didn't consider the strain on my mind or body to be constantly on the go. I would do things that in hindsight seem insane and so anti-business it's no wonder I was so broke last year, like fly out to readings (obviously on my own dime) and then spend $50 or $60 bringing cupcakes to them. I thought I had to spend all this money I didn't really have to get people to come out to my events. I thought that this was normal. I didn't consider that that money might be better invested in my business in other ways. I'm not saying those events weren't fun, merely that now I am very aware that, yes, it's an honor and exciting to be part of LoveFest in Charlottesville next month, but it's an honor that I will pay for. If I am not bringing in enough income from writing/editing/teaching, then doing things like that are wasteful, no matter how exciting it may feel to me in the moment. So right now, while doing my taxes and thinking about next steps, I'm making sure every penny I spend on my work, even if it's a subway ride to an event, is worth it, that it makes sense for me. Because if it doesn't, then I have to look out for myself.

desk

Being in New Jersey, being separated from most of my friends and embracing being a homebody who works from home, has given me a creative freedom I couldn't have imagined. I used to go to the wonderful Gimme Coffee every single day when I lived in Brooklyn. I loved it there and if I still lived in Williamsburg I probably still would go, even though I now have a coffeepot and favorite mug and they are my morning rituals that I truly can't live without. But for those freelancing years after I got laid off in 2011, I would easily spend at least $5 a day on coffee plus tip, plus the occasional pastry. Granted, I'd spend many hours in Gimme Coffee, so I totally got my money's worth and wrote pieces I'm proud of. But having an actual home that feels like a home rather than a pit of slovenliness, is this gift that I sometimes feel unworthy of, yet have fully embraced. I sometimes lately have these "pinch me" moments of Do I really get to do this for a living?, but then remind myself that I'm here because I've earned it, I've been working hard, I've been figuring out what works for me and what doesn't. My desk is crazy and needs a good cleaning, but it's also in the office which is the warmest part of the house. It's cozy and has a printer (yes, I didn't have a printer when I lived in Brooklyn) and makes me feel professional in the same way gathering my 1099s and using my whiteboard does. After way too long of floating through my working life, I am finally, despite what this desk looks like, getting organized, getting clear, making myself my first priority. It feels a little scary, but a lot like I'm on exactly the right path. I'm not even going to berate myself for taking until age 39 to get here.

Labels: ,