The Funny, the Empowering, the Lifesaving…

The last couple weeks, even smiley ol’ me needed some help finding things to laugh about. Fortunately, my friends and Facebook came through…

A fellow coffee lover posted this hilariousness….

I also saw this awesomeness that spoke to my inner music lover…

And my hilarious and awesome buddy, Anna, from Herding Cats and Burning Soup posted this to our Kinkery group…(so you know it’s going to be both hilarious and naughty)

And this morning, I saw this particular review shared on facebook regarding Veet Mens Hair Removal….I laughed so hard I cried. Those of you who’ve followed me for a while on here know just how seriously I take Manscaping. :-D

So thanks! Ya’ll didn’t know how much your posts brightened an otherwise tough week for me.

And then there were some truly sweet and empowering things that people shared.

My friend, author Kristy K. James, shared this story about Taylor Swift and her going out of her way to send a special message to a fan who was being bullied. It moved me to tears.

Another friend posted the video for the new Colbie Caillat song, Try. Talk about powerful and empowering. A message reminding us to be ourselves! We’re beautiful just the way we are. I know that this message is near and dear to my friend, August McLaughlin’s heart.

And then there’s the lifesaving….

Lately we’ve talked about how technology has changed the world, and often not in a good way. But there have also been some amazing things that have come from the tech world. Did you see how an App saved a baby’s life?

Check out this story about the Pulse Point app…. How cool is that?

So, despite all the ups and downs, there has been a lot of “cool” thrown in there, too. What about you guys? What things have made you laugh, touched your heart, or simply made you want to share? And if you have a smart phone, what apps have you found that make a difference in your life (or maybe someone else’s)?

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Celebrating My Prince Charming

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My happily ever after began 5 years ago, today…or that’s what a piece of paper says. In reality, it started when I was 19 years old and too full of myself to notice it.

That’s how old I was when I first met my husband. Back then I mostly dated pretty boy GQ types who rarely challenged me to be “more” on any level. My mom would tell you that’s probably why, in my youth, I changed boyfriends as quickly as some people changed bed sheets. She claimed that they weren’t “smart” enough to capture my interest, so she never worried. She knew I would get bored.

Still, when Mr. Kitt came along, he wasn’t what my friends considered my type. They cautioned him not to get his hopes up. He’d just grin. He knew exactly what he wanted and wouldn’t be deterred. He became my best friend, instead.

Most guys would hate being “friend zoned,” but not him. He noticed my friends lasted longer. He got to know me. My hopes, my dreams, my loyalty, my fears. And I got to know him. His sneaky brilliance, his ability to see through the facade to the true face of people, his irrepressible humor and ability to talk meaningfully about anything.

He waited a year before he made his first move. I never encouraged him, thinking we didn’t really have any sexual chemistry. Boy, was I surprised when he proved how thoroughly wrong I was!

That was 21 years ago. Our friendship? 22 years.

Wedding Day

He’s taken the heat for years because the world assumed he was the reason it took us so long to get married. It wasn’t. He always knew what he wanted. Me? Let’s just say I had some scars. He knew it and he waited patiently for me to face them. He stood beside me all the while. He never let me get away with things. He was honest, even when it hurt. He challenged me. Made me think. And he expected the same from me.

Kiss

So today, I’d like to say Happy Anniversary to the patient, loving man who knows me inside & out and loves me anyway. You truly are my best friend and partner, and the person I want to share happily ever after with because I know with you it will never be boring. Thanks for all the adventures so far, can’t wait to see what’s next.

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Happy Birthday, Baby Brother

I still remember the day it hit me.

Oddly enough, we were coming by the house to pick out your funeral clothes…and to pick up more stuff for us to wear. Mom couldn’t stand to be in the apartment anymore. Too much hurt, maybe. Or just too many memories. Either way, it was the second time we came back home after getting the news you wouldn’t be coming home with us.

I threw open the door and called out….”Hey, Jonathan!”

I forgot. For one moment, between the car and front door, I really forgot. Until the moment I called out your name. And then it hit me like a ton of bricks. You were gone.  I cried….harder than I ever had before. Tears of the heartbroken.

You may have been four years younger, but you were one of my best friends. It was habit. To tell you about my day. To laugh with you. To find out about yours…and I knew you’d be excited to be staying at Auntie Marta’s for a while….except you wouldn’t be there with us. Not ever again.

Just so you know, it’s been 26 years since I last saw you…and I still remember you. Still celebrate your laughter. Still miss your smile. And I try to live each day in a way that brings honor to your memory.

And I’m not alone in my grief. So many others are doing the same thing around the world…because someone desecrated your birthday. I’m glad you weren’t here to see that. It would’ve broken your heart. But you would’ve been proud…of how people rallied to be there for one another. To give comfort. And hope.

So today, I’ll smile through the tears….I’ll be the best me that I can be. Because I know deep down, it’s the best way to honor your memory.

I love you.

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Speeding Things Up With Lissa Matthews

When I was first discovering the joy of the Kindle App and the fabulous erotic romances (especially on the kinky side), one of the first “spanking” good reads I came across was from the fabulous Lissa Matthews. Her women were real. Her men, dominant. I was in love. And then Lissa responded to one of my Tweets…and another. She was even cooler than her books! And she loved coffee. And football! Needless to say, I think she’s amazing! 

When I heard she’d re-released one of her awesome Racing series books, I asked for the honor of hosting her. She said YES! She’s sharing a bit about her love of racing…and a delightfully racy excerpt. You guys are going to love her as much as I do! So, without further ado, one of my favorite people ever…. Lissa Matthews!

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Hi. My name is Lissa Matthews and Stick Shift is my new release. Well, my new, old release. And working on it after several years was like visiting friends I hadn’t seen in years. We kind of picked up as though time hadn’t passed us by, yet, there were new things and new revelations I learned about these wonderful characters that I hadn’t been privy to when I was writing them the first time around. They didn’t know me all that well and had to take some time to warm up.
It’s interesting how as writers we personalize our characters. We try not only to bring them to life for you, the reader, but they’re as close to us as our living breathing friends/lovers, etc… Sometimes, closer. We talk to them. We argue with them. We feel what they feel. We see into their intimate moments, their kinks, their fantasies. We might create them and they might embody some part of us, the writer, but they take on a life of their own and we are at times at their mercy. At least, I am.
Stick Shift is the first book in a series titled The Bad Boys of Racing. I love NASCAR, but will watch other forms of racing too. My son got me into it. For a long time, if it had wheels and a checkered flag, he’d watch it. But Stick Shift is just as much about a woman who is independent but blossoms under the love and attention of a young, hot shot race car driver. She’s plus size and the hero loves it. She’s a little submissive, but at times she’s a little aggressive and he loves that too. They have a great chemistry and when I had the opportunity to get the rights back from the publisher, I jumped on it.
I revised the book, extended some scenes, added some new information, added in an excerpt from the second book which will be out in the next few months, and a recipe for molasses cookies which do play a role in the book. If you haven’t read Stick Shift, I hope you’ll add it to your TBR list or just go ahead and 1-click it.
I appreciate Kitt for offering up her blog for me to tell you a little about my book.

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Available at Amazon!

Blurb:

Falling in love at two hundred miles an hour…

Cam Carter is young, hot, and cocky as hell. He’s loved by some, respected by few, and hated by more. He’ll do anything to win the next race, the championship, or the heart of the girl.

Lily is unlike any other challenge Cam has faced. Quiet, full-figured, and several years older, she’s trying everything she can to resist the pull of this bad boy of racing.

Can they find a way to cross the finish line and take the checkered flag together? Or will obstacles, both inside and out, push against them until they crash and burn?

Excerpt:

Oh God. She was really there, staring at him, and he – bless his gorgeous face – if his smile was anything to go by, he looked happy to see her. She suddenly felt out of her element again and not quite up to the dress code in her blue, lacy knee-length skirt and white frilly t-shirt. Her pink painted toes curled under as she shifted her weight nervously from one foot to the other in the cute, sparkly flip-flops Alli had talked her into wearing. Then again, there probably wasn’t a dress code, given that he was in faded, threadbare jeans with holes in the knees and one of the back pockets ripped at the seams. His T-shirt was black with a washed-out logo she couldn’t make out, and his sneakers had seen much better days. Still, she felt uncertain about how she looked standing there while they stared at each other. What was it about him that drew her and scared her all at the same time? Maybe it was his freshness, his youth, his smile that was all too knowing and aimed at her. Maybe it was because she was out of her depths and he was way out of her league.

Things like this just didn’t happen to women like her.

He stopped in front of her. “You’re here.” He sounded pleased and Lily hoped she wasn’t making a terrible mistake.

“I-I hope it’s okay that I just showed up without calling first. My friend drove me here and wouldn’t let me call. She was afraid I’d chicken out.”

“Would you have? Chickened out?”

“I tried several times, but I was already strapped into the seat of her car.”

“Well, I’m glad you’re here. I can stop checking my phone every thirty seconds now.”

Checking his phone? Surely he wasn’t serious. Guys didn’t do that sort of thing. Guys like Cam Carter didn’t do that sort of thing. “I’m sure you probably made plans for tonight. I just wanted to…” She wanted to what? She was stranded. Alli had left almost as soon as Lily’d stepped from the car. She hadn’t wanted to give Lily a chance to escape.

“You just wanted to what?” he prompted for her to continue.

Lily hated that she was stumbling all over her words. The man had her tongue-tied and she wished she hadn’t had that particular thought, because she would love to be tongue-tied, naked, and wrapped around him.

She had to stop thinking like that, too. Instead, if she could just stay focused on how much younger he was than her, how different their lives were, she might actually get out of this awkward mess unscathed.

“I don’t know, but I shouldn’t have shown up out of the blue.”

“I love the surprise. I don’t have plans other than you. If I did, I wouldn’t have told you to meet me. No one needs me until tomorrow, so that means I’m all yours tonight.”

“Oh.” She likely hadn’t hidden the surprise at his choice of words, because he laughed. All hers? Yeah, right. In what universe was a man like Cam Carter ever going to be “all hers”?

“You like that idea.”

He was reading her mind again, just as he’d done at the autograph session. She had to learn not to be so transparent. Alli was forever telling her that everything she thought or felt could be seen in her eyes and in the expressions on her face.

She took a deep breath and let it out slowly. She could do this. “Well, yes, of course. How could I not?” She’d play along. How often did an average, ordinary music teacher get this kind of opportunity? “I’d be crazy to not want you all to myself.”

“Great. Because that’s how I want you.” He stepped close and traced the outline of her cheekbone with his callused and scratched fingers that melted her even more. “All to myself.”

He was going to kiss her. She knew it because he took off his sunglasses, because the pulse beat in his neck had kicked into high gear, because his lips actually brushed hers. Oh. My. God.

He’s too young. He’s too young. He’s too young.

Her mind rattled off the litany, knowing she needed to remember it, no matter how weak it might be. It would be so easy to get carried away if she spent any kind of time with him. But all of her reminders, all of her good intentions drifted away at the softness of his lips, the insistent tip of his tongue, the feel of his hand sliding into her hair, the pressure and control he exerted in holding her mouth to his.

It was a brief kiss, just a small taste of him, but it was enough to whet her appetite for more. The little devil inside her head laughed. As if she needed her appetite whetted. For days she’d thought of him and little else. She’d never wrestled with anything more.

Should she or shouldn’t she?

More than once, she’d picked up the phone and dialed his number but never let the call go through. What if he hadn’t remembered her by just her name and voice alone? What if he put her off or changed his mind or hadn’t meant for her to take the date and time on the picture seriously? What if it was a bum number?

Lily’d been so uncertain what to do that Alli had forced her into the car and dropped her off at the race shop, exactly as she’d told Cam. As soon as Alli left, Lily entertained the notion of walking to the nearest bus stop, but then Cam stepped outside, and she couldn’t move, could barely breathe. She didn’t want to leave without trying. Trying what, she didn’t know, but there was definitely something in the air between them.

“Just as sweet as I knew you’d be,” he said softly, his lips still grazing hers

Just as hot as I remembered you being. Lily smiled, not trusting her voice to speak just yet.

“My shy little kitten.” He chuckled and shook his head. “What do you want to do? Dinner? A movie? A concert? A club? Whatever you want to do, we will do.”

“Shy, little kitten?” That had cleared the fog enough for her to open her mouth.

“Yes.” He nipped the tip of her nose with his lips. “You’re all shy and timid, like a scared kitten. Relax, beautiful. I won’t hurt you. I just want a date with you.”

“A-a date?”

His brow wrinkled and his mouth twitched at the corners when she stammered out her question. She wanted to kiss that mouth again and she wanted to brush her fingers against the creases in his forehead. She wanted to touch every inch of him, commit him to memory.

“Yes,” he confirmed. “What did you think this was?”

“I don’t know. I didn’t know you… A date? In public? With me?”

Cam’s smile faltered as he gazed at her curiously. Now he was the one looking uncomfortable. “Was I being presumptuous in thinking that you might like to go out with me?”

“I… No. No, not at all. I definitely would like to go out with you.”

“On a date? In public?” The light returned to his face as he teased her, and it took her breath away. Damn. The effect the man had on her.

Cam Carter.

She wasn’t strong enough to deny him or herself. He was offering her a chance few women ever got, just as Alli had said. Alli told her to make the most of it and Lily couldn’t think of a reason why she shouldn’t throw caution to the wind just once and do this one thing for herself.

“And just so we’re clear, Lily? It’s entirely possible that I’ll want more than one date by the time the evening is over.”

To learn more about me, you can find me several place around the internet: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Newsletter

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Celebrating World Sexual Health Day and August McLaughlin

August McLaughlin (aka the GirlBoner woman)

August McLaughlin (aka the GirlBoner woman)

As many of you know, a great passion of mine is helping to spread a sex positive message and to aid in building people and their self esteems up. So when I stumbled across August McLaughlin’s blog about two years ago, an instant connection happened. And when she decided to introduce #GirlBoner, I was cheering loud and hard.

August has quite the compelling personal story, and she’s touched my heart. As we became friends, it was clear that she is someone to be admired and respected because she is a woman of both word and action. She celebrates life in general, and her fellow womankind in particular, by hosting such events as Beauty of a Woman (which I was honored to participate in this last year). But she doesn’t stop there. She’s got her own GirlBoner Radio show. If you haven’t tuned in and listened to her shows, you’re missing out. And as if that’s not enough, she was also one of BlogHer 2014’s Voices of the Year.

Yes…. August is one beautiful, busy woman….and tomorrow she’ll be a panelist and Emcee for World Sexual Health Day. What a well deserved honor for her, and what a fabulous cause! The really cool part is that we can participate online because the event will be streaming live! And if you want to be part of it via Facebook or Twitter, you can do that, too!

On top of all this, she’s an author and she sings! In fact, we’ve decided that the first time we meet face to face, we’ll be singing together, so we’re thinking karaoke party…. Who’s in and what songs are a must sing at a karaoke party to you?

And on a more serious note, how will you be celebrating your sexual health this September 4th?

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A @TrashyWriter Double Cover Reveal!

One of my favorite people, “Trashy Writer” extrordinaire Amelia James, has a lot going on these days. Not only is her first ménage book, Her Twisted Pleasure, FREE right now on Kindle (Pssst! Yeah, she’s that kind of “Trashy!” :-D Go get it NOW!!!!), but she’s also got a couple of cover reveals.

Without further ado, here’s the fun, fabulous Amelia James!

Twice the Trashy Cover Reveal!

Today I have not one but two gorgeous covers to expose. The first is for my upcoming contemporary romance, Tell Me You Want Forever which will release this winter.

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The second is a new cover for the previous book, Tell Me You Want Me. The original cover is beautiful, but in recent months I’ve been seeing that couple on dozens of other books. I want to stand out, so I’m doing something different.

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Both new covers and the original were designed by Mallory Rock.

But that’s not all! Here’s a little something to whet your appetite!

Arouse All Your Passions….

Bestselling romance Tell Me You Want Me gets a steamy sequel….

Notorious heartbreaker Austin Sinclair vowed he’d never fall in love, but all that changed when he met his Janie. They’re living their happily ever after… until an unexpected threat tears them apart.

Austin is desperate to get Janie back, but fails miserably. He’s said ‘I love you’ so often Janie doesn’t care anymore, and getting her in his bed to prove it seems impossible. His old life beckons. Could he be that guy again?

Jane scored big when she landed Austin, but now she faces a temptation she never expected—one that makes her question what she really wants from love. Staying in a relationship with him requires all the strength she has. She’s tired, and giving in to someone else would be so easy.

Each hopes that something will change, that the other will give in, but it’s going to take both of them—together—to overcome this obstacle. Can they make their love last forever? Or has their fight been for nothing?

Amelia James
About Amelia James

I got hooked on trashy romance novels in junior high, but my mom took them away from me, But she couldn’t stop me from daydreaming. After I got married, I wrote some of my naughtier daydreams down and sent them to Playgirl magazine. Two of them got published. I kept daydreaming and writing stories until my dirty stories turned into trashy books.

I live in Colorado, but I’ll always be a loyal Wisconsin Cheesehead. When I’m not lusting after my next bad boy hero, I’m looking for inspiration in sci-fi and action movies, football players, morally ambiguous lawyers, muscle cars, and kick-butt chicks.

You can find me on Facebook, and on Twitter I’m known as Trashy Writer. I call myself a trashy writer because I want my readers to know that I enjoy mindless escapism as much as they do. I’m not out to win a Pulitzer Prize. (But I’m an award-winning finalist in erotica, USA Book News 2012.) I just want to help someone relax and get away from it all for a little while. I write romance, erotica and trash for fun and pleasure.

Trashy’s Treasures Blog: http://trashystreasures.com/

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TrashyWriter

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AmeliaJamesAuthor

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/106317629275663311597/posts

Good Reads: http://www.goodreads.com/trashywriter

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Continuing Education of the Sexual Variety

SexEd

A friend of mine recently reached out to me and asked for my opinion based on an article that had caught her eye. The subject was sex education in high school (and whether or not a certain text book selected for the class was appropriate for 9th graders). It was a topic of controversy in California. Parents were outraged. Civil liberty people were called. Text books were deemed by many of the parents to be “pornographic.” And in the end, the text book was pulled. The parents won.

As I read the article and contemplated her question about my opinions I found myself thinking about how often misconceptions surrounding sex come up. How often friends ask me for clarification and/or advice despite the fact I’m not a therapist. I’m just pretty knowledgeable and enjoy researching the subject (in the many various formats available for “research”.)

So here are my thoughts as they pertain directly to the California scenario. The parents were well within their rights. Although I firmly believe it’s very important that sexual education continue, and not just from a “sex is evil/having sex can get you diseases that can range from embarrassing to lethal/save yourself till marriage” standpoint, there are certain subjects that should probably be left for private discussions rather than a public forum. For example, the text book chosen went into details such as sexual positions, bondage, and helpful hints for masturbation. Now, to be fair, there’s no way to know if these subjects would’ve been discussed in class, but they also came with illustrations a la The Joy of Sex. In my opinion, that’s probably pushing it a bit, and I can see why the parents were up in arms.

In an ideal world kids would come to their parents or schools would have a social worker or therapist on staff that they could come to…to sit down and talk about these things if they’re curious. Heck, let’s be real….do you really think there aren’t any precocious freshmen girls who haven’t read 50 Shades? You’d be deluding yourself. But on the flip side, the entire class doesn’t need to be in the middle of this discussion because everyone’s level of knowledge and experience or desire to go there is not and will not be the same!

Why focus on the advanced courses without addressing the basics? What should be discussed in this sex ed class (because I truly do believe we should continue the education…heck, they haven’t had sex ed since their private parts and their functions, including periods, were explained in 4th-5th grade)? How about a positive body image. How about instead of focusing on tips and pointers of masturbation, we explain that it’s a natural function and that exploring ones self is normal. How about explaining the impacts of cruel cutting words surrounding a person’s body and/or sexuality. Detail how such simple things as words can create eating disorders, fear, and even suicide….and that there is power in social media, so they should be judicious in how they choose to use it. Or that positive words can build a person up and help them take on the world? How about tolerance for people who may not share our sexual interests? There’s no need for the details there, though it certainly may open some people’s minds up for questions and curiosities. Heck, they may even go to people they know who are into whatever it is that caught their attention and learn something…including tolerance!

I guess what I’m trying to say is that sexual education definitely needs to continue, but some of it should be explored and experienced through independent learning. Helping guide people to thirst for more learning is the first step. Taking away the taboos and the fear is the second. (And it doesn’t mean you have to push aside the very real concerns about safety, pregnancy, and diseases.) Third is teaching that with sex comes responsibility, and that sex is never a decision that should be taken lightly without understanding the potential for consequences. We can do ALL of that without threats and fear!

You know why else sex education is important? Because you don’t want your child to be the 23 year old girl who asked a very close friend of mine if she had to worry about becoming pregnant because she swallowed when she gave her boyfriend head. Or my own friend who, at 19 years old, was confronted with a boyfriend who didn’t like condoms and wanted everything to be “natural” including the pills they bought together at a health food store. Needless to say, she was pregnant with twins by the time she was 20. These situations, while extreme, are examples of what can happen when sex discussions are pushed away or fear is put at the forefront. Where old wives tales prevail. Or worse, ignorance.

Heck, I’m 40 years old and I’m still continuing my sexual education. How about you? BTW, if you’ve got your own stories of fear/ignorance, I’d love for you to share… And if you’ve got thoughts on sex ed, I’d love to hear those, too!

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