1st Post of 2016…

david bowieAnd it sucks.

I had hoped that my first post of 2016 would be relating the story of how I had sold my shapeshifting superspy novel to a big publisher over the holiday break. I certainly didn’t expect to be mourning the loss of a personal hero.

On January 10, 2016, David Robert Jones aka David Bowie, passed away from liver cancer. There have been a rash of celebrity deaths lately and while they don’t usually affect me, this time was different. You see, David Bowie has been with me most of my life.

I first became aware of him when I was three and heard the album of Peter and the Wolf that RCA put out. If you didn’t know, he was the narrator telling the story in that soothing, smooth as silk voice of his that naturally lent itself to storytelling to wide-eyed children. I listened to it over and over, fascinated by the story of Peter and his forest friends outsmarting the wolf. I was also falling in love with music– becoming aware that music itself was the storyteller. That you didn’t need words.

As I got older, I was blessed with older sisters that were also music lovers. They were bent on completely warping me as much as possible. Fortunately, they were Bowie fans that never missed an album. By osmosis, I grew to be a fan loving songs like “Let’s Dance,” “Never Let Me Down,” and “China Girl.” By age seven I was making my own compilation tapes from the radio and staying up late to catch the video for “Blue Jean” on Friday Night Videos. The first time I saw that video, I thought he was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen.

In 1986, I was nine years old and at the age when most girls are prepubescent and just starting to realize that there is a difference between boys and girls. And that perhaps they aren’t the ideal romantic heroine. The romanticism of being in love is just starting to occur. I suppose it wasn’t a surprise. I was obsessed with fairy tales. And what better fairy tale is there than Labyrinth? The story of a misunderstood, awkward girl who still plays pretend long after it’s appropriate. Who makes up stories to escape from feeling unloved and unattractive. Who feels herself growing up and losing her innocence and desperately wants to hang on to it. And then when it seems that all hope is lost, a powerful savior arrives to save her from being a grownup. He loves her because of her strangeness and isn’t going to require that she change. For the first time, she’s the cool one that someone is willing to reorder time and space to be with. Her, the awkward innocent that only wants someone to love her best. By the end she realizes that she had that all along and that she doesn’t need a savior. Especially not one who wants to keep her as a possession. She is in control of her destiny. “You have no power over me.”

Even now when I’m feeling awkward and unloved, I watch Labyrinth or listen to the soundtrack and wish for the Goblin King to take me away (right now!). And I think that’s what’s hurting the most today. That no matter how much I wish, The Goblin King isn’t there to take me away anymore. And there will never be one to take his place.

RIP Mr. Jones. You served us all so well and your voice will echo throughout the centuries. Thank you for making the world a little bit brighter. For being a friend in the dark. For molding an artist. And for making us all proud to be different.


What’s On Your List?

Since we’re talking about sexy today, I figured it was only fitting for me to do a post about what I find most sexy– the right music.  The senses are God’s little gifts to our sex lives.  Some people are very visual (men, to put a finer point on it) and they like to see the naked chick goin’ down on the hero.  Others are more susceptible to touch.  Just a brush of lips on the back of the neck can be enough to send them over the edge.  And some of us are very audial.  By “us” I really mean “me.”  I have to hear things.  Talking, whispers, little groans– I find it all very sensual.  And one of the things that really gets me going is the right music.  It’s true– I have a list of songs that are sure to get me in bed.  And I’ve noticed that many of these songs have found their way onto various playlists for various stories.  Yes– I make soundtracks for my stories.  Shoot me an email and I’ll be glad to ennumerate…LOL. Alright… to the list (in no particular order).

1.  Wreath of Barbs by :wumpscut:– I admit it, I’m a closeted rivethead.  I love industrial music.  Especially when writing a really intense erotic scene.  And this song, though it’s got the pounding grind of the Industrial sound, the melody is haunting and sensual.  There’s about a billion different remixes of it and it has become an Industrial anthem.  I can’t be responsible for my actions when I hear it….

2.  Hollow by Epsilon Zero– I first heard about Epsilon Zero from a friend back when they were just a local band playing dives and (I’m not kidding) haunted houses.  She fell in love with frontman Jamison Boaz’s incredible vocals and insisted that we all take a listen.  And I’m so glad I did.  This song is just sad and sexy and everything you could want in a dark romantic track.  It makes me very happy in ma pants, as my friend Sky would say.

3.  I Put a Spell on You by Creedence Clearwater Revival– This is mine and my husband’s song.  The first time I heard it I was a teenager staying up late to watch soft core porn on Showtime.  It was featured in a particularly  hot scene in the  movie “Knight Moves” with Christopher Lambert.  Now, I think only me, Christopher Lambert and maybe his mom have ever seen this movie, but the song stuck with me.  So years later when I met my husband, a man who really makes my liver quiver, it seemed only natural that we would adopt this as our song.  That and the fact that he believes to this day that I put a love hoodoo on him.  Absurd isn’t it…..

4.  One by U2– This song is perhaps the most perfect song ever recorded.  Poetic lyrics that pierce straight through, smooth melodies that are dark, but singable and Bono’s growly vocals make this song one of my favorites of all time.  Though it’s more about love between all of us as the human race, it’s a sexy tune that takes my breath away every time.

5.  My Heart Will Go On by Bella Morte– I got no idea why I find this song so sexy.  Perhaps it’s because it’s so different from the Celine Dion version.  Maybe it’s the sentiment of unconditional love pulling at my heartstrings.  Or maybe it’s frontman Andy Deane’s mohawk– I’m not sure.  All I know is, this song makes me want to dance in the dark, then slide down the wall and make passionate love on the concrete floor.

Are there others?  Of course.  Closer by Nine Inch Nails (cliche– I know), Para-Noir by Marilyn Manson and So Far Away by Dire Straits just missed the cut for this post.  But I was already up to 600 words and I still need to stick an excerpt from “Masquerade” at the bottom.  I know… it’s the only reason you read this far………..

So in this scene, Blythe has some momentary doubts.  Silly girl…


Blythe closed her eyes, allowing this masked stranger to pull her close. His hands slid lower,

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cupping the fleshy part of her ass and using it as leverage to press her center against his. He pushed against her teasingly, obviously wanting her to feel his arousal. She whimpered, wanting to grind against him with abandon, but propriety getting the best of her.

“I shouldn’t be doing this,” she sighed, nuzzling into him.

“Of course you should,” Apollo purred. “You’re safe here. No one will ever know.”

“But I will.”

“There is always risk. But with no risk, life becomes stagnant and meaningless.” The music swelled as if on cue and he twirled her roughly until he had her pinned against the wall, away from everyone. “You’re dripping with life, love. I can smell it on you just as sure as I can smell that French perfume.” He inhaled deeply, his breath so hot against her skin it seemed to sizzle. “If you keep it all inside, I promise it will fester like a disease until it’s painful and the light goes out.”

Blythe groaned softly, brushing her lips against the line of his cheekbone, feeling his words down to the well of desire building in her belly. He was right. If she didn’t let herself have this…if she didn’t let it go, then it would grow into resentment towards Will, then hate. It would destroy them.

“Yes,” she sighed as his tongue found its way into the cuff of her ear.

He chuckled softly, a gravelly sound that made her insides roll with excitement. “I thought you’d see it my way,” he whispered, sliding his hand down her thigh to pull her leg over his hip.


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Guilty Pleasures

Good morning, kittens!  I’m feeling extra good today because its one of those precious days off from work!  Don’t get me wrong, I like my job.  Some days teaching is the most wonderful thing ever, but that doesn’t mean that I can appreciate things like sitting on my couch with the dog, still in my pajamas, watching “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman.”

It’s okay.  Go ahead and laugh… I’ve heard it all before.  I know I don’t seem like a person who would like a wholesome family show like Dr. Quinn, but I have some memories attached to that show.  My mom and I used to watch it in two hour blocks when I was on summer vacation from college.  Its kind of like reading those old western romance novels without having to actually read them.  You have the feisty heroine that’s smart and too mouthy for a woman of her time.  The wild and free hero that’s really a symbol for sexual awakening.  And of course a cast of sterotypical western characters:  the crotchety old shopkeeper, the dirty saloon owner/pimp with the roguish charm, et cetera, et cetera.  I can’t help it.  I love that show!  It’s a guilty pleasure that I like to indulge every now and then.

Everyone has their own guilty pleasures.  Things that would be detrimental to their “image” if other people knew about them.  But I say let it all hang out.  Confess all those 80s One Hit Wonders that you secretly love.  The cheezy movies that you watch faithfully everytime they’re on.  Don’t be ashamed that you read all the Twilight books religiously as they came out, all the while complaining about how awful they were.  Guilty pleasures reveal those hidden parts of our personalities that we rarely let others see.  I’m always interested to peer into other people’s lives.

So what’s your guilty pleasure?

VNV Nation– Muse of the Day

Ok, I think we already discussed how much music plays into my life as an author.  I simply cannot write without it.  I’ve tried to write in silence, and it just doesn’t work for me.  My wonderful sister, the dynamic writer Lucy Blue, was talking about how I like a lot of Industrial music that sounds to her like “tractors being ground up by the Death Star.”  So I introduced her to VNV Nation, one of my favorite Industrial groups.  They have the pounding electronic sound, but their songs have melody and purpose that I find to be both brilliant and beautiful.  With that in mind, I decided to post a short playlist of some of their music so that those of you who haven’t heard them can get a little sample:

Illusion:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MVHT-EJyqGI

Beloved:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kfc3zcnrWMQ

Holding On:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCUHClheiZk&feature=related

Carbon:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2q6gQkYkaQ&feature=related

Electronaut:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjJk3bbE87c&feature=related

Darkangel:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3-IPG-XnaU&feature=related

Firstlight:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltpC0VfgEE8

Forsaken:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NYjFD1QSttQ

From My Hands:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GyqS133L17A




Fandom Fest Playlist!

So I really can’t think of anything to write about except the abject terror I’m having right now.  But y’all have heard about that all week.  So when all else fails, do a random music post!!!  Yes, ladies and germs, the following is among the HUGE playlist I’ve been working on for my iPod for the ride to Louisville, KY.  Sorry, Tally Darling….  And btw—I post the youtube links so you can listen to the song and then download it from iTunes or Amazon (in other words, don’t pirate the muzak).

Ava Adore– The Smashing Pumpkins  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3dwXYAqy-HI

The Time– The Black Eyed Peas  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Xt7Z_64dHE

This is What Rock N Roll Looks Like– Porcelain Black  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFgdOgWUwOg

Raise Your Glass– Pink  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XIyHpWmna9U

Winterborn– The Cruxshadows  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuLASvt3s5k

Cinnamon Girl– Type O Negative  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cTU0Q4Uw4I

Get Your Body Beat– Combichrist  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXGc2geyYyI

Electronaut– VNV Nation  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjJk3bbE87c

Find Forever Gone– Bella Morte  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdYdaiwCs3E&feature=relmfu

Christfuck– :wumpscut:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zr_Nk6kRJ70

Happy Listening!!!





Be the DJ of Your Life

One of the things that I’m always very adamant about is that music is one of the most important things in my writing.  I use playlists to outline stories, set my mood to write a certain scene and indeed, I have found inspirations for plots, images and titles through listening to music.  I don’t know of many writers that don’t have their trusty iPod at hand whenever they sit down to put pen to paper.  I could be wrong, and please let me know if you must have complete silence– other people’s rituals fascinate me, but I’ve found that this is the case for most authors.

I have extremely schitzophrenic tastes in music that range from middle of the road rock like Muse and Coldplay to pounding Industrial Goth like :wumpscut: and even as far as old-time country music like Patsy Cline.  Its all very personal and influenced by mood.  Nothing is so powerful a tool of memory than music— except maybe smell.  I always hear a song that makes me think of an event in my life.  Its almost like a key to the little box in my brain.

Nothing has helped me find new and interesting music more  than my career in Second Life.  My alter-ego, Scarlett Thirdborn, is a club crawler.  I like to take her to all sorts of different places and listen to different types of DJs and I have probably downloaded more music after hearing someone’s set than I ever have before.  So before I actually get to posting this week’s playlist, I’d like to give a shout out to some of my favorite SL DJs and thank them for feeding my addiction:  DJ Wham (no really, I like that weird assed progressive blues-funk fusion thing), DJ Steph (the KING of Classic Rock), DJ Prodigy (the other white meat… rawwr) and DJ Sky (my own personal Goth savior) and many others that are too numerous to mention.  Thanks so much for inspiring me with your sets!

OK.. here goes.  A few songs for your listening pleasure:

Hollow– Epsilon Zero:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnUx16oc3cI

Wreath of Barbs– :wumpscut:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHI4TYFKld8

The Siren– Nighwish:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RuqUoMfgMvM

Bye Bye Blackbird– Diana Krall:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=itzAmnHJd_A

Wild is the Wind– David Bowie:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cSAKlu0OlU

Illusion– VNV Nation:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muhVKlWFWuQ

Where Shadows Lie– Bella Morte:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Sife3EAbfM&feature=related

Burn– The Cure:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyr5WdrEvGI

Dear Ophelia– Abney Park:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AzpBOazn1P0&feature=related

Remember– Emilie Autumn:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WaWsnRPgAoo&feature=BFa&list=PL285D059E2B4FD439&index=8

Love the Way You Lie– Eminem w/ Rhianna:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGT6AKt3eYM

This is by far not a complete list, so my goal is to do a music post every week.  Happy listening!