Among all the happy release news this month, this is probably the most exciting. I have been in more anthologies with Cheyenne Blue than I can name off the top of my head, and I have always adored her stories, her style and her approach to erotica. So now, not only did she chose one of mine for her fabulous anthology, as luck would have it, I also get to interview her on my blog today.
Settle in comfortably, you’re in for a treat. First you get to know the awesome person that is Cheyenne Blue, you also get a glimpse at her story Out for the Count, published in her fabulous new Ladylit anthology Forbidden Fruit: Stories of Unwise Lesbian Desire.
Cheyenne, you’ve just made the jump from writer to editor – is this a truly new field for you? What drew you to editing an anthology?
Forbidden Fruit: stories of unwise lesbian desire is the first erotica anthology I’ve edited, but it’s not my first editing experience, nor my first anthology. I’ve edited for a now defunct epublisher, as well as freelance editing, both fiction and non-fiction. A few years ago, when I was living in Ireland, I put together an anthology of local writing that was sponsored by the local Arts Council. That was a great experience that whetted my appetite for more. And what’s more obvious than the genre in which I’ve written and contributed to anthologies for over ten years? When the opportunity arose at Ladylit (www.ladylit.com), I jumped at it.
Forbidden Fruit has been a wonderful editing experience, and that’s due in a large part to the seventeen wonderful contributors and the lovely people at Ladylit.
What was the hardest thing about the selection process?
The rejections. I’ve had loads of them over my erotica career and so I know firsthand that they’re not a nice thing to receive. They’re not nice to send either. I received many good submissions that I had to reject either because they were not the right fit for Forbidden Fruit, or because they were too thematically similar to another story. For example, I received three stories in which the forbidden fruit was a partner’s or ex-partner’s mother. All excellent stories, and I was very sorry to reject two of them.
I’ve always really enjoyed your writing – do you have a special approach to erotica?
Thank you! *beams*
I don’t have a special approach to erotica. As with any fiction I write, erotica has to be firstly a story, and then a story with sex in it. If sex isn’t an integral part of the tale, then it doesn’t belong there. I have a folder full of unfinished stories, snippets, and ideas (it’s huge) as a result.
Where do you tend to draw your inspiration from?
Most of my stories start from a somewhere. That is, I have to have a setting in my head before I start writing. Even if I’m writing a story set in a generic bar, in my head it will be a bar I know on Colfax in Denver, in Brunswick Street in Melbourne, or a backcountry bar in Arizona. It has to be a real somewhere for me to write about it, even if that “somewhere” is not a noticeable part of the story. Then the characters can spring from someone I saw somewhere, or whose conversation I overheard in a coffee shop. Things get extrapolated from these basic starting points.
Can you tell my readers a bit more about your story in the collection: Out for the Count?
My story, Out for the Count, is about Linn, a casino security guard, who befriends a card counter in order to identify her and bar her from returning to the casino.
I have a relative who very successfully supplements his pension by card counting. His tales of big wins are matched by his stories of being escorted from the premises by casino security. I’ve always thought that scenario offers great potential for a story, and it seemed like a good match for Forbidden Fruit. Plus I took advantage of having my very own technical advisor on hand (for the casino aspects, not the sex!)
Here’s an excerpt:
The keys she saw in Francesca’s purse do indeed fit a Lexus. A silver late-model one. Linn sinks into the leather seat, fakes a wide-eyed look around. “Lovely car,” she says, and leans forward to twiddle the radio dial.
Francesca slaps her hand away, and as Linn feigns hurt, Francesca picks up her hand and presses it to her lips, kissing away the red mark.
This time, Linn’s gasp is not feigned. The touch of Francesca’s mouth on the back of her hand sends a jolt of silver desire along her arm. One touch from the red lipsticked mouth pressing a kiss to her flesh, and she’s molten. Wide-eyed she stares at Francesca.
Francesca withdraws. “Did I read you wrong, darling? If I did, it’s a first. I thought you knew what you were getting into. You don’t want poker tips any more than I want to give them.” One side of her mouth lifts in a half smile, and she seems amused.
Caught off balance by the directness, Linn stammers an apology, but Francesca leans across the gearshift and presses her lips to Linn’s. She kisses her hard, her mouth firm and assured. Her hand rests on Linn’s thighs, pressed protectively together. A shaft of desire pierces Linn’s belly. She knows the parking garage is covered by CCTV, she knows that Raoul may be watching this, but right now, she doesn’t care. She wants Francesca with a fierceness, an immediateness that equals Francesca’s own post win high. It’s doubtless going to be a euphoric fuck for Francesca, but Linn is there with her, and if Raoul is watching—well, she will make her excuses to him later.
So she kisses Francesca back, pushing her tongue into Francesca’s mouth, and tasting the lust that leaks from her. But she keeps her thighs together; Francesca is probably so high she would fuck here in the parking garage, uncaring of security cameras. But Linn won’t go that far. Indeed, she thinks, she will stop this soon. But not just yet.
She breaks the kiss. “Your hotel.”
Francesca starts the Lexus. Linn lets her hand settle on Francesca’s thigh as they follow the ramps to the exit.
Outside it’s dusk, and away from the casino there are only the quiet streets of a town which reeks of desperation. Linn’s fingers explore higher, up to the juncture of Francesca’s thighs, over her skirt. And then, when that isn’t enough, she reverses direction, lets her fingers crawl down to her knee and repeats the process underneath the skirt. Francesca’s bare skin is smooth and warm. When Linn’s fingers touch the edge of her panties, they are damp.
The next stop on the Forbidden Fruit blog tour is Allison Wonderland http://aisforallison.blogspot.com who is interviewing Ava-Ann Holland.
Leave a comment on any post in the Forbidden Fruit blog tour to be entered into a random draw to win one of these great prizes. Prizes include a paperback copy of Girls Who Score, lesbian sports erotica edited by Ily Goyanes, Best Lesbian Romance 2011 edited by Radclyffe, Wild Girls, Wild Nights: True Lesbian Sex Stories edited by Sacchi Green, an ebook of Ladylit’s first lesbian anthology Anything She Wants, and a bundle of three mini-anthologies from Ladylit: Sweat, A Christmas to Remember and Bossy. All of these titles contain some stories written by the fabulous contributors to Forbidden Fruit: stories of unwise lesbian desire. You must include an email address in your comment to be entered into the draw.
Forbidden Fruit: stories of unwise lesbian desire is available directly from the publisher, Ladylit or from Amazon, Smashwords, and other good retailers of ebooks. Check out http://www.ladylit.com/books/forbidden-fruit/ for all purchasing information.