So, remember a little while back, I said I was considering expanding my horizons somewhat? Well, I’ve decided to take the plunge: I’m writing a full on, in-one-piece, romantic-rather-than-erotic novel!
And, to top it off, I’m actually going to try to submit it to a publisher and see if I can get it published traditionally.
I should note that I have a few pros and cons for this decision. The pros are mostly that it’s going to serve as a milestone for my writing: it’s mainstream, full length and I may actually get critiqued (rejected) by someone in ‘the biz.’
There’s also the obvious pro that in some wonderful universe where I need to buy a lotto ticket, I might actually get published! Live the dream: book release…public appearances…a movie? Dinner with RuPaul? The sky’s the limit.
Now for the cons. The genre of the book is paranormal/ adventure/romance so I still get to be a bit flirty and dirty in my writing, but it’s much more vanilla than the Strange brand usually presents. Not that I mind that, it’s just going to be a learning curve for me. I mean, I find whips and chains super romantic, but where’s the line for the rest of the world?
Also, it means a lot of my energy is being put into one place. I’ll still be writing my shorts on the side, but they won’t be as regular and that worries me because I don’t want to lose the 5mph traction I’ve built over the last year and half.
The scariest thing for me though, is I won’t be writing under my pen name, I’ll be writing under my real name. Because this isn’t erotica, I don’t have to hide my identity. Which is great for the most part, I can actually stand up and take credit for my work. But I’m actually a little sad to shrug off K M Strange. I feel like I’ve grown so much with her, the writing style, the colours, even the colour scheme. It’s all very me. I know I can apply the same style to my real name, but I still can’t risk being connected.
Of course, if I hit the big time I can quit my day job and come out of the stationary cupboard once and for all. Then there will be no shutting me up! Muhahaha!
Anyone out there had any experience in traditional publishing, I’d be very grateful for your tips, tricks or even just your stories.
(Sorry, not your stories; I’m not trying to steal your work. I meant your experiences. I swear…)
Saul Bellow said, “You never have to change anything you got up in the middle of the night to write.”
If someone wakes me in the middle of the night to write they’ll have to redo it completely because I’ll have made them eat it. I’m a Mum.
Hello, readers and a very Happy New Year to all of you!
(I know I’m the last out of the gate with this, but hey, fashionably late is how I roll.)
So, I feel like most of us can agree the last few years have hardly been the best. You know, globally. I daren’t even say, ‘I didn’t have a great year,’ because I fully expect to hear a roaring, ‘No shit, Strange!’ from the world in response.
I did actually have a few personal, non-COVID related grievances though. I mean, it’s still not a competition, but let’s just say I’m now the oldest living woman in my family at the tender age of 30-something.
Closer to 30. #justsayin.
Anyway, in a truly unique and unpredictable manner, I’m writing this post with the intention of discussing my plans for New Year and my hopes that it, and I, will be much improved.
Are we talking about resolutions, Strange? Yes, dear readers, I’m afraid we are. As well as general plans and ideas.
…still there? Anyone?
Well, for those of you still with me, let’s start with resolutions. When I was younger I used to make a list of like ten that never came to fruition. As I have grown wiser, (I think I mentioned I am the matriarch and therefore automatically the wisest woman in my family now) I make fewer, much more achievable goals. This years are as follows:
1) Eat healthier. No, seriously. Not like, eat less chocolate or whatever, I’m actually pretty healthy as it is, I’m just trying to level up. My rule of thumb is, if I can’t honestly say it’s good for me, it’s not going in my mouth. -Insert fellatio joke here.-
2) Learn a language. I love languages and I can make very polite observations in about five. For example, ‘Eyeh, Baka, ei-tai!’ Is ‘No, idiot. That hurts.’ In Japanese. Spelled phonetically lof course. But I’ve decided I need to finally be fluent in at least one.
3) Make significant progress to making writing my career and giving up my day job. That ones fairly self-explanatory. So long, London Underground!
And that’s it. Nothing too major. But all of it (barring maybe the language one,) is because 2021 taught me one thing above all else; my life isn’t of value to me as much as it is to my family. I owe it to them to live as long and as fully as I can so that my son is not left without his parents in his early-thirties.
In the short-term, I’m currently working on the third and final Sophisticated Beasts story, and it’s flowing easier than some of my previous stories already, which I feel must be a good sign. I’m working hard to apply the feedback I’ve gotten from last year, (particularly from Priscilla Bettis, a horror author who is far too talented and well-known to waste her time giving some newbie erotic author a full and thorough review for every book and yet always takes the time to, anyway. Do check out her new book, The Hay Bale, if you feel like being chilled to your bones!) to improve my writing as much as possible.
I’d love to know, readers, what are your resolutions or projects for the new year? Anything I can check out?
So, here’s to 2022. It literally can’t be worse than 2021, right? Right.
“Celebrate endings—for they precede new beginnings.” Jonathan Lockwood Huie coined that phrase, and the makers of the Matrix swear by it.
So, first of all, can you believe Mr Strange wouldn’t allow me to use that as the title for my Halloween collection? Sometimes I feel like my creative genius is being totally smothered. 😒
So, the main stories for my collection are finally all written and mostly edited. This has been a fantastic summer in that regard, and I’ve actually learned some helpful tips! (Don’t get too excited, the dedicated authors among you will either already know this stuff, or be clever enough to see obvious pitfalls in my brand new game-changing discoveries…)
First, instead of writing a story and then editing it straight away, I’ve written several stories and then come back to them much later. This has been hugely beneficial because I’ve been able to reread the work with almost completely fresh eyes. Before, I would miss typos because I had the story so clear in my mind, I was reading what I knew should be there, not what was actually in front of me.
(Side note: It’s also been a real eye-opener to discover how short my memory retention actually is. Two weeks away from a piece of work and I’m like, ‘Wow, this is pretty good stuff. I didn’t see that ending coming at all!’)
Another interesting thing I’ve noticed is that I seem to be developing an MO of sorts with my writing. I took some time to look back over some of my older work during my editing time, and there were similarities to my newer stories that I hadn’t expected at all! (Remember the worrying retention thing?) I feel like I’m really building my identity as a writer, and actually becoming a more three-dimensional K M Strange. I find myself smiling at things I’ve written and being like, ‘Heh, classic!’
What’s really impactful to me about this, is that the dream of being a writer/stay at home mum is starting to feel more real. I want this to be who I am, not just something I do on the side, and as my bookshelf gets bigger, it seems so possible. I’m chugging along, and slowly but surely, I’m making it happen.
That said, I’m so grateful to my husband for his constant, unwavering support. And I’m endlessly thankful to everyone who has read any of my stories or blog posts, or left a comment or review. It may just seem like a small, ‘Eh, she’s not the worst author I’ve ever read, I’ll bang her 70p and a medium rating,’ thing to you, but to me, it’s life changing.
Anyhow, I didn’t mean to get all ‘real’ there. I’m just in a very happy head space I suppose. Must be Autumn. ☺️ Speaking of, the new Halloween collection that will not share the same title as this post is going to be released in a few weeks, so watch this space!
Amy Collette said, “Gratitude is a powerful catalyst for happiness. It’s the spark that lights a fire of joy in your soul.”
Sounds like another powerful catalyst I’m familiar with… 😏
So, I wanted to mention that things may be a bit quiet in the Strange warehouse at the moment, it’s going to be a little while before a new title is released.
Not that I’m not working on it…I am! But the last few months I wasn’t up to my best. I lost a family member in March, so I was busy grieving and organising the funeral etc, while also trying to write. The writing was a welcome distraction to be honest, but I realise now that it meant that some of what I released wasn’t up to my usual standard.
Anyway, I went back and re-edited some of my more recent titles to bring them up to scratch, and then I figured, in for a penny, in for a pound! So I’m now going back over my older work too, just to make sure everything is as good quality as possible.
That’s it, really. Not that I think you’re all out there watching your computers obsessively waiting for my next title, I just didn’t want you to think I’d faded in to the oblivion of lost writers. I did visit there once for a holiday, wouldn’t go back; the service was awful. Great food though…
Salvador Dali said, ‘Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it.’
So, as a writer of all things kinky and some things funny, I’m not one to back down from being a little risqué or inappropriate at times. But I read something recently that literally made my jaw drop:
I’m not supposed to answer reviewers?!
I’m still pretty new to this, but apparently it’s actually considered a faux pas to respond to reviews, even positive ones. I’m not complaining, I was just genuinely surprised.
I don’t mean that I would want to argue with a negative review, I’ve always said I take feedback gratefully as I’m still learning. But I’m a naturally chatty person, and I’m always super pleased with any review so I like to say thanks.
But have I been making an awkward situation for reviewers? I wouldn’t want to put them off reviewing my writing! Is this something that’s standard practise or just something some reviewers feel?
Writers: do you answer reviews? And if you are a reviewer, what are your thoughts?
And most importantly- how many times can I slot the word ‘review’ into one post? So many questions!
Rumi said that silence has so much to say. What he didn’t know, is that when K M Strange is around, silence doesn’t get a word in edge-wise.
Okay, so not my best title ever, but it actually illustrated my point quite nicely. Recently I’ve been pondering a particular question; does horror and erotica really mix?
Now, I already know the initial answer; yes of course it does, duh! It’s not for everyone, but then, what kink or sexual preference is? I myself have found several horror-based erotica’s very exciting and some of my all time favourite fantasies fall into the genre.
There are so many trails one could follow once you start tiptoeing down this dark path- paranormal romance is the obvious and possibly safer starting point, but there are so many others too. Werewolf attacks are surprisingly popular, and I’ve always been partial to a good ‘Taken by a Ghost’ story. Even zombies are featured from time to time.
So, what makes the horrifying so seductive? Personally, I enjoy the feeling of being subdued and taken as my base-line, and there is plenty of scope for this in horror; you can’t outrun a monster, can’t overpower a werewolf, and you don’t have to worry about the awkward ‘Ive got an early meeting’ chat with a vampire because he is back in his coffin long before sunrise.
The reason I’m pondering all this is because I was inspired to write something with a horror element to it. I’m about half way through and I have to admit, I’m thoroughly enjoying myself. I get to do my usual sexy antics but with even more creative freedom. It’s like writing a nightmare in a fantasy.
The bottom line is, I’m having so much fun stretching my creative muscles with this story, but how will it translate to the readers? That I don’t know. Mr Strange is concerned that’s it’s off-brand. I say, I am my brand so whatever I write will always be a K M Strange classic. I’m a bit of an ass like that.
It’s not exactly terrifying, just a little sexy/scary. I’m just testing the waters, as they say.
So, what say you, dear reader? Is there passion to be found in the depths of the horror genre? Or do you tend to steer clear of the Big Bad Wolf?
Nightmare on Elm Street’s Heather Langenkamp said, ‘Whatever you do…don’t fall asleep.’
If I had a quid for every time I had to give that advice…
I know, I know, it’s a little late for an Easter joke. I can’t help it, I’m just so egg-cited!
For those of you still reading, thank you for seeing past my cheesy humour…
So, today I’m writing because I feel like I’ve overcome some kind of huge writing block this week. I’m still working on the story I mentioned in my last post, and up until yesterday, I was really struggling with certain elements of it.
I found I was able to write the main story okay, but it was lacking some depth. I felt like I was hanging out with these characters but they weren’t being upfront with me about everything I needed to know.
You know when you’re at a party and there’s tension and pointed comments made between two of the guests but you don’t get where they come from? It was a bit like that. I was genuinely starting to worry about how I was going to pull the story together.
I kept going though, hoping that if I stuck with it, played nice and earned the other guests trust, they would confide in me the big secret I was missing. And that’s exactly what happened.
It was a bit of a gamble, because for a while there, I thought I might end up getting to 20,000 words before having to just bin the whole thing. Now, though, I’m genuinely excited about finishing this story with the added information I have.
Has anyone else experienced this with their writing? Sometimes I feel like I’m only half in control of my stories, and that the characters I write have a degree of autonomy… it means that I actually often don’t know exactly what’s going to happen even when I’m writing.
…maybe I’m just a little mad. But shh, don’t tell my characters, I don’t want them to think they can get one over on me!
Anyway, I’ll leave you with this; George Santayana said, ‘Sanity is madness put to good use.’ I wonder how much erotica he read before he came to that conclusion?
So, I’m currently working on a story all about a woman stuck in a cabin with a huge guy. Not just big, but like, beastly if you will.
Now, we all had our princesses as girls, and I was Belle. As a child, I thought I liked talking clocks. As a teen, I realised what I actually liked, was the idea of a big, strong, slightly scary man beast.
I thought that meant that this was just my type, even my husband is very much that ‘alpha male’ body shape; tall, broad shouldered, oddly possessive of certain wings of the house. But as I’ve gotten older, that perception has started to shift a little.
As an adult, I find I’m far more aroused by mental dominance than physical dominance. The fact is, I’m 5ft 3in, not a big girl. Not even a big hobbit, for that matter. It doesn’t take much for a man to overpower me physically. (I’d like to note I have taken a few guys out with a pretty effective right hook, though.) I suppose it’s just not as impressive when a man is all muscle.
But I do consider myself to be an intelligent person, and as I’ve gotten older, I find I’m more and more turned on by mental prowess. This is a little hard to explain, luckily Mr Strange is an impressive specimen in this category too.
There are times when Mr Strange has done little more than talk to me, lowering his tone, captivating me with his piercing gaze… and convinced me that not only do I want him to fuck me, I need it. That’s what really gets me hot. When a man (or woman in my younger days) could use my own arousal against me. Could tempt my kinky side out and make me behave like the submissive slut I am deep down.
So tell me, dear readers, what is it that gets you hot and heavy: brain or brawn? Do you want to be thrown against the wall and taken? Or talked down on to your knees?
And to those of you on the other side, what’s your most effective technique? Do you throw your lover over your shoulder and carry them to bed? Or do you whisper sweet degradation and make them thank you with their undying physical devotion?
Plutarch said, ‘Remember, the mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.’ I would argue the same could be said of other areas too.
I know, I know, we’re all sad to say goodbye to 2020, forgive me for being so controversial.
Heh, okay, maybe not.
I’m going to join the crowds of people who are very ready to get 2021 started, and I’ve got a lot of ideas that I’m psyched for! Change is cumming people!
My New Years resolution is to purge myself of the toxins in my world; Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy planet. Am I saying ‘No more junk food for me ever again?’ And jogging my way to the supermarket to buy some new gym gear that will only get used three times before being upscaled to my new loungewear?
Yes. But at least I’m trying, bitch!
To be honest, I’m actually in a place where I’m incredibly happy with most things in my life. I find I’m at a stage where instead of trying to make huge changes, I’m more focussed on building on the foundations I’ve made over the years.
Some things definitely have to go, (I still have huge clanking goth boots from my late teens) but otherwise, my plan is to just keep doing better with what I love.
Which brings me, inevitably, to my writing. At the moment, I’m a book and a half away from finishing the Garden of Eden series. I’ve decided to get this all done before I start anything else. I’ve loved writing this series and while I’ll be sad to be done with it, I’ll be happy for my characters who will finally have the answers they’ve been demanding between their many sexual antics!
On the horizon, I’ve got a supernatural series planned, think hotel for sexy-ass monsters meets K M Strange. I’m also in serious debate about opening an Etsy shop under my pen name and selling various night-time delights. I’d be interested in your thoughts on this.
So tell me, dear readers, what are your plans as we skip hopefully into the new year? What do you foresee on your own horizons? Will your plans benefit from some elegantly written porn? You know your girl Strange has got your back.
Until next time, I’d like to leave you with a quote from Mae West that needs no tampering from me, ‘All discarded lovers deserve a second chance, with someone else.’
And like those forgotten lovers, I’m ready to let 2020 fade into the past. 2021 – let’s be having you!