Saturday, April 14, 2018

Repin’ the Realness of Race, Class and Wellness in Erotic Lit - #LGBTQ #womenwriters #blackwritersmatter

Owing It cover

By Stephani Maari Booker (Guest Blogger)

Writing has been my lifelong vocation, and for a good chunk of my life I’ve been a voracious reader of erotica, mostly F/F erotica being that I’m a lesbian. However, I’ve written only four complete erotic stories in my life, plus an erotic fantasy romance that’s currently in progress. On top of having had jobs in journalism and nonprofits, I do a lot of different kinds of writing, so erotica just isn’t always on the front burner when I have many other things cooking on my stove.

In my completed erotic stories, I’m repin’ the realness of race and class when folks hook up. To translate from African American Vernacular English to Standard American English, I’m representing the everyday truths of race and class in romantic/sexual relationships. I’m not depicting big conflicts and dramas but rather the down-to-earth little pushes and pulls between intimate partners that with respectful communication, love and a little sex can resolve into deeper understandings and connections.

An interracial and inter-class couple are main characters in two of my published erotic stories. Madeleine (“Maddi”) is an African American woman from an urban low-income background who fought for the education and opportunities to enable her to have a lower-middle-class job, while her lover Freya is a European American woman who’s been middle class since birth and is a classic lesbian eco-feminist Goddess-worshipper. Their differing perspectives based on their backgrounds and identities affect their individual choices and beliefs about everything, including money and sex, often with amusing results.

My first published story with Maddi and Freya is “The Trade-In” in Coming Together: Girl on Girl, one of Eroticanthology.org’s collections that raise money for charity. In “The Trade-In,” Freya wants Maddi to get rid of an unattractive, cheap jelly-rubber dildo and replace it with a quality silicone one. However, Maddi thinks it’s extravagant to pay a lot of money for a sex toy.

The second published story featuring Maddi and Freya is now in Owning It: Embracing Our Bodies, Sexuality, and Power, a newly released anthology from SinCyr Publishing, a press whose mission is "shifting rape culture one sexy story at a time." Here’s the publisher’s description of this collection:

Owning who we are is powerful. By embracing our bodies and owning our desires, we best experience beautiful, sensual, and intense sexual expression. The characters in Owning It love their bodies regardless of their physical limitations. In these pages, a Daddy and his 'little' explore the healing waters of a DD/lg dynamic. Others enjoy a wide range of sexual encounters and relationships from playful to intense, from straight to queer, from light to dark. These authors give us characters that truly own it.”

The idea of “owning it” includes proudly claiming your identity and recognizing how it informs your sex life, as well as managing issues of health and ability in ways that benefit sexual, physical and emotional wellness. My story in Owning It, “The Best Medicine,” focuses on these themes by repin’ the realness of race, class and wellness in a romantic-sexual relationship.

The story takes place at the beginning of Maddi and Freya’s relationship, when a particularly irritating minor health problem threatens to put the brakes on their new sex life. In this passage, Maddi has told Freya over the phone that she has a yeast infection. Freya, a self-described witch, proposes natural ways to cure the infection that are rejected by Maddi, who tends to look askance at anything that seems impractical and superstition-based. However, there’s one method Freya offers that Maddi can’t refuse:


Ohhh,” I heard Freya moan. “You know, Maddi, you could just eat yogurt instead of using the cream. Yogurt will cure you of yeast just as good.”

Yeah, yeah, Ms. All-Natural,” I dismissed her idea, like I do most of her hippie-dippy nature girl stuff. “It probably takes forever to work, like all those natural cures you’re into.”

A plain yogurt douche works, too,” she kept on.

Please, like I need something messier and slower than Monostat cream! Freya, my baby doll, I love you, but let up on that stuff sometimes!” I hated to even admit I was following some of her “food is the best medicine” advice, but I did it anyway:
I am eating yogurt on top of using the cream every day, though. I want to knock this shit out. But in the meantime, my poonani is off limits to you, baby!”

Hmmm…you know what? I could help you with this.”

What do you mean?”

I could…this weekend…give you some plain yogurt.”

Illlh!” I stuck my tongue out with disgust. “Plain yogurt with nothing in it?
There’s no way I’m eating that.”

Slowly and slyly, she said, “I didn’t say anything about giving it to you to eat.”

No. She. Ain’t. Talking. About... “Hooooh…hell naw, woman!”

A plain yogurt application—just what the natural health practitioner ordered!” she proclaimed, her voice high with triumph.

Mm-hm,” I conceded. “Aren’t you happy you’ve figured out a way you do your little natural girl thing on me?”

I’m happy I found a way where you would let me,” she replied, sounding as cheery as a chipmunk.

Are you itching (pun intended) to read about Freya’s sexy medicinal ministration to her lover Maddi? Then pick up a copy of Owning It: Embracing Our Bodies, Sexuality, and Power, where you can read this story as well as 14 others in which people of many genders, sexual orientations, races/ethnicities, classes, ages, abilities, sizes and kinks find health, hope and happiness through sexual healing.


Owning It on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2CB9t87
SynCyr Publishing info: https://sincyrpublishing.com/2018/03/24/owning-it-release-day/

About the Author

Stephani Maari Booker of Minneapolis, MN, writes prose and poetry for the page and for performance in which she wrestles with her multiple marginalized identities: African American, lesbian, lower-class, nerdy and sexy. She has nonfiction, science fiction, erotica and poetry in many publications. For more information about Stephani's work, go to www.mnartists.org/smbooker or www.goodreads.com/athenapm.

Giveaway!

Leave me a comment with your name and email, and I’ll enter you into a drawing for a free ebook of Owning It, courtesy of SynCyr Publishing.


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