Take Care – a self-care post

I was inspired to write this after reading Girly Juice (Kate Sloan)’s excellent post on strange self-care in a time of terror.

Self-care (or coping, as they are sometimes one and the same) as Kate points out, is unique from person to person. What works for you might not work for me, and vice versa. With that in mind, here’s some of the shit that’s helped me in the past two weeks – hopefully, some of these bits will inspire you to do what you can do for yourself or even help you with finding something new.

I love you.  You matter. I’m with you in this fight.


Confession – I am not the greatest when it comes to drawing things. And I’m also not the greatest at allowing myself to do something for me. But that mindset took a bit of a shift recently, when I discovered the work of Ruby Etc.

Her stuff made me pick up pencil and paper, and lemme tell you, I’m still shite at drawing but fucking hell it feels nice to just let go and doodle what I can’t put into words.

Challenge (and general retro TV)

This is a very UK thing – there’s a channel called Challenge which is basically a treasure trove of UK game show repeats. The other day, I watched a Wheel of Fortune celebrity Christmas special in which they all wished me a happy 1989.

It’s similar to watching random episodes of old TV shows. A visual comfort blanket in the form of Tequila and Bonetti or ER.

Nail polish

Red lipstick is self-care. And so is nail polish. In any colour, really.

Scary media

Whether in book form or in film form, horror can be helpful with alleviating anxiety for some of us. It’s a genre I’ve turned to time and time again (along with sci-fi/fantasy) for a strange kind of comfort. Hit me up for recommendations, if you’re feeling getting lost in something spooky.


Film. The other love of my life. The day after the referendum, I went to see The Secret Life of Pets. In the last week, I’ve barely held it together through Arrival and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Film is, along with music and books, essential. I could write for the rest of my life and far beyond that about how film matters, but for the purposes of this post I’m keeping it simple. It matters. Entertainment is not (and will never be) a mere trivial distraction from outside shit.

Hot chocolate and a book to read

Speaks for itself.

The “My Dad Wrote a Porno” podcast

I have gone on record on Twitter as saying that My Dad Wrote a Porno basically saved my life, and that is no fucking lie. If you’re new to it, MDWAP (for short) is the brainchild of Jamie Morton who, after discovering his dad had written and self-published a hilariously bad erotic novella called Belinda Blinkeddecided to share his misery and embarrassment with his two mates Alice Levine and James Cooper. And also the world, in podcast format.

ILB and I started listening to MDWAP not long after the referendum. It was a laugh we both sorely needed, and we binged season one at a breakneck speed, finishing in time for the start of season two. It is horrifying, cringe worthy, hilarious, wonderful fun;

Let me know if you have any unconventional self-care methods, if you want any horror recommendations or if you’ve joined in on the fun with My Dad Wrote a Porno. Similarly, let me know of any fundraisers, charities, people and places you want to give a signal boost to or come on here to talk about.

And I will say so again: I love you. You’re not alone. You matter.

Continue Reading

“I Can’t Find It!”

Oh god, I’m such a fucking potato.

Himself and I were on a date at the cinema last night. One that was a bit fraught, considering most of what we’d planned went a bit wrong. Down to the fact that, as we were heading towards the exit afterwards, we were confronted with a massive downpour. Eventually, we made it onto a bus.  It was late. We were tired and cold. So conversation wasn’t exactly flowing. It was more of a “let me cling onto you like a loving limpet” kind of moment.

I mentioned something about making a t-shirt with an inside joke between us on it. Like, I don’t even know why exactly. I just did because when we’re both tired it’s like our brains sync up to hammer on the ULTRA RANDOM button. So, I mentioned this particular inside joke. And I said something along the lines of “but which one would you put on a t-shirt for me?”

He thought it through for a second. Then his face lit up.

“Where is it? I can’t find it! Oh God, IT’S GONE.”

Have you ever, in the heat of a sexy moment, blurted out something so ridiculous it just follows you around perpetually? A something that occasionally gets brought up by your partner and makes you wish you’d never ever spoken, ever in your life? This is what that is for me.

Lemme rewind.

*spoopy, squiggly flashback effect*

This happened about three years ago. I may have written about it then, but fuck it, I’m writing about it again. We were in the midst of some ferociously good foreplay, the kind that makes you lightheaded and giggly and slowly replaces any kind of logical linear thought with the words WOOHOO SECKS YAS GOOD on a loop.

So it was that I went in to give him a blow job. Well, I wanted to. And I was going to. But… weirdly enough, I couldn’t immediately find his cock. Which was quite the achievement considering he was rock hard and also RIGHT FUCKING THERE.

I panicked. I legit panicked because my brain can be a cheeky little shit sometimes. Especially in the heat of a sexy moment. But this was peak me being a shambles. In a thick haze of lust and libido, my brain had successfully convinced me, for a few seconds at least, that my boyfriend’s cock had vanished into thin air.

Three years on, and I still am a bit mortified by it. Just a little. The words, mostly. I actually had to ask him what context this happened in, as I couldn’t for the life of me remember.

Well, I do now. And yeah, after a bit of a duff night, remembering it was a slight bit of a laugh which I needed. An embarrassing one, but a laugh nonetheless.

Continue Reading

The Couple in the Car

Moments don’t have to take long to imprint themselves on us. Even the smallest flash has the power to stick in your mind for ages. It was like that with the couple in the car. This happened a few weeks ago, but somehow I keep thinking back to it. Maybe it’s because it happened so quickly. Maybe it was one of those moments where my mind filled in the blanks.

Because my mind does like to fill in the blanks. Writer’s thing. It could have been nothing at all. It could have been exactly what I thought it was.

It was early evening. Dark already, the kind of foggy cold dark you get in early autumn. We were walking back from something unspecified and family-related. Birthday thing,  possibly. Doesn’t matter. All that matters is that standing at the top of the road was a car. Which isn’t that remarkable considering it’s a suburban road and there’s cars all around. But there’s a car.

And the window’s foggy.

And for some reason, I spot the foggy window in the corner of my eye. Along with the woman. And the man on her lap. I think they’re kissing before we pass by. Or it might be the mind filling in the blanks. They might be fucking, but it might be the mind filling in the blanks. She may catch my eye and we may exchange a glance.

But it might be… well, you know.

It’s just a tiny moment, which might not have even happened. I may have seen nothing at all. I may have seen everything. It’s been stuck in my head for a few weeks now though. The kind of moment where I keep pondering whether or not I can turn it into something more on the page. The kind of moment when that sort of pondering makes me want to smack myself on the hand because sometimes I need to switch the writer brain off.

Whatever it was, it was a moment.

Or was it?

Continue Reading

Halloween Erotica – Descent Unto Silk’s

It’s Halloween, and I thought I’d write a bit of short, sharp erotica to freak you out and turn you on at the same time.



“Tegan… can you hear me?” 

Her eyes are a flickering amber bonfire. Silk’s is a blur of shadows because of it. Nothing happening yet, so she’s relying on her instincts. Her instincts, and the woman whose voice now lives in her head.

“Nod if you can hear me.” 

Tegan nods her head, sips her drink. The burn of the alcohol is piss-weak compared to the building fever embers in her body. Slowly the flames lick their way outward from her core. She’s learned to control the fever. But still, the power which has nestled inside her terrifies her as much as it arouses her.

Or maybe terrified and aroused have entwined. Maybe her emotions are as much of a blur as the shadows in front of her.

It started with the voice. Her voice – her Guardian, although Tegan couldn’t possibly know that at the time. The only thing she did know was that her body was betraying her in a way no medical textbook would have ever deemed possible.

Except it wasn’t a betrayal.

It was something much, much more complicated…

Her cunt throbs. It always does. Her body is wetness and heat. Need is what drives her survival. Need is what helps her see tonight, and all the other nights and days of her new life.

She is anchored to her corner spot. The throbbing bass and sound waves of voices vivid as they always are when her eyes glow and people become shadows. Temporary loss of one sense, constant amplification of the other four.

“Breathe deeply. I can sense your heart quickening. Breathe. Let the energy flow – don’t let it tangle. And look again. Deeper.” 

Shadows flit around, the sound  of drunken stumbles and sloshes like a concerto of white noise. She’s patient. She’s waiting for the shadows to clear. And they will. She might still be new to this, but she’s just about figured out how to channel the energy in a way that isn’t as frantic and unfocused as it was when this all began. All she could see was shadows and lights then.

But now, it’s light – singular. And light singular is sitting at the bar, tall, dark and handsomely looking her up and down. His features are clear, almost luminescent against the shadows of Silk’s other revelers.

She feels herself moving, lifted away from her little corner and directly into the path of the Light Singular. Who introduces himself to the good Dr. Tegan Byrne, asks her if she’d like a top-up of whatever it is she’s drinking. He’s polite, which is good. Asks her if she wants to sit with him, is kind to her…

Good. Very good. For him more for her.

Because Succubi don’t take too kindly to the rude. And as much as the first touch of his hand on her thigh makes the fire inside her just a little less fierce, it would be less enjoyable fucking him with the knowledge she may have to do something very, very bad to him afterwards…

This is a short companion piece to my story Becoming, which you can read in Dirty Flash Fiction (a Sexy Little Pages anthology of dirty flash fiction). 

Continue Reading

Let’s Play a Game

It’s funny where ideas for blog posts can come from. Or when they come to you.

Yesterday, I was on the bus back from a staff meeting at work. I was reading Alexander McQueen: Blood Beneath the Skin. There’s a mention of an interview he did with i-D – he was asked to give three items he’d take to a desert island. His answer, paraphrased? “Not a sewing machine, let me tell you. Poppers, a vibrator and a shit tonne of Coca-Cola.”

It made me laugh. And then it made me think. Specifically, it made me want to have some fun with Desert Island Discs.

If you’re not familiar with the show, it’s a long-running radio show in which a guest (or “castaway” as they’re referred to during the programme) chooses eight recordings (usually music), a book and a luxury item they’d take with them to a desert island. That general idea, combined with McQueen’s answer to that question, gave me the idea to do my own sex writer spin on it.

Which, for about two seconds, I wanted to call Desert Island Dicks… but that says literally nothing about what I’m doing here so.

Here’s how I’m going to go about. On the radio show, you get to pick ten things – I’m dividing these into three sections, plus a bonus. Three erotic fiction books/pieces/anthologies. Three sex toys. Three porn scenes/films. One bonus wildcard item.

Let’s go.

Three erotic fiction books/pieces/anthologies

– Orgasmic (edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel)

Contains at least three of my all-time favourite erotica shorts (The London O by Justine Elyot, Making Shapes by Lily Harlem and Chemistry by Velvet Moore), is generally a fucking brilliant anthology

– Diary of a Library Nerd (Kyoko Church)

I bought this in Victoria Station on the way to Eroticon this year, and I read most of it on the coach back. I would have read all of it but it took quite some restraint to not do so. This is that kind of book. A book so fun, so sexy, so emotional, you want to hover it up with your face.

– The Things That Make Me Give In (Charlotte Stein)

I *love* Charlotte Stein. I make absolutely no secret of this. She is a fantastic person. A fabulous friend. And a writer who manages to expertly combine the sensual and the emotional in a way that feels so achingly real. This is an entire collection of stories by her. Of course I would take it with me.

Three sex toys

– The Doxy

I KNOW. It’s mains powered. It wouldn’t do me a lot of good on a desert island. But, you know, it’s THE DOXY. I would want it with me regardless.

– nJoy Pure Wand

Five years. Five years since I started this blog, five years since I first heard about this gold standard sex toy. I still haven’t got one. But if I had one, I’d take it with me and make up for lost time as I would have plenty of time to do so.

– Fun Factory Stronic Eins

Again, I don’t own one but I have on many a trip to Sh! geeked my brains out over it. It thrusts. It fucking well thrusts. Mate.

Three porn scenes/films

– Literally anything by Pink & White Productions

I don’t really need to tell you how much I love Pink & White, right?

– Instructed

A collaboration between Pandora Blake and Ms. Naughty, Instructed stars Pandora and her lover D, but also not. You see, D is there in spirit and voice but not in the flesh – yet.

D has written her a note featuring explicit instructions which Pandora must follow to the letter. We can hear his voice telling her what to do, dominating her from afar. It is as sexy as it sounds.

– Anna’s Mates (Anna Span, Easy on the Eye Productions)

Anna Span. The legend that is. This is one of (I think) two or three of her films I own (or owned, as I haven’t a fucking clue where it went) and it has some of my favourite porn scenes ever.

Special bonus wildcard

– Liquid Silk lube

Of course.


If you fancy giving this a go, leave a comment with a link when you do!

Continue Reading

Tick Tock (for Wicked Wednesday)

Written for this week’s Wicked Wednesday prompt – Countdown. Warning: gets a bit dark.


Tick Tock


welcome to your life

You write this down in the margins of the notebook you’ve got in your backpack. Notebook, book, pen, gum, condoms, lube. The standard kit for when you make this journey.  Sometimes you’ve got an extra pair of shoes in there – the nice sensible ones for after a night out with him. Sometimes there’s a length of rope, and right now the thought of it makes you grimace because that length of rope seems like such an abject metaphor for this non-relationship.

welcome to your life/ welcome to the bed you made

There’s a song in your head and you’re wanting to busy yourself with writing down the lyrics you think you remember. Much like how you often busy yourself writing down the moments between you and him that you think were golden.

passing time does make fools of us all

The train chugs along a stretch of parkland and it’s one of those annoyingly bright and lovely days. You look outside and you catch glimpses of people, blurs of joy and ice cream and prams and skateboards. Actual solid golden moments being made, probably.

And you?

You find yourself on another train, another Saturday where your end destination is on top of him. Under him. Whatever. What-the-fuck-ever. This time tomorrow you’ll have been spat back out of his flat and into yet another train carriage. Your sex life is a hobbling train carriage of monotony. Your love life doesn’t exist. This is nothing but an arrangement made entirely for the convenience of his penis.

Never at your place. Always the travelling, always this fucking rickety train, always the gaping void where the cash in your wallet and the feeling in your soul were meant to be.

Just sex. Only sex. Sex is the beginning and the end. The touch of his hands on your tits. The feeling of his tongue on your clit. The rough and the smooth. The rough and the rough. The sex is all there is.

It’s alright. The sex is alright. That’s the word that comes to mind when you think about the time you spend locked in this penis-arrangement. In this time bomb that tick, tick, tocks its countdown to whenever it’ll explode. When this sexual puppet master of yours will cut you loose in a way that he’ll no doubt think is ugly and shattering.



But you’re counting down along with that time bomb because the realization that it will only be him that thinks it to be ugly and shattering is a profound one.



for freedom and for pleasure

doesn’t last forever

welcome to your life

But for now, all you can do is sit back in your seat on the train and wait until it pulls into that station. He won’t be there to pick you up. He never is and he doesn’t think he has to. He just knows you’ll turn up at his door, knickers wet and body desperate.

All you can do is sit back in your seat. Wonder how many seconds are left on that time bomb.

Welcome to your life.

Tick. Tock.

Tick. Tock.

Wicked Wednesday... a place to be wickedly sexy or sexily wicked

Continue Reading

Talk About It – for World Mental Health Day


It’s World Mental Health Day. So I wanted to take this opportunity to write about mine. Talking about my depression and anxiety in an open and frank way on here has helped me immensely. Just like being open and frank about sex. This blog has always been a source of catharsis, among other things, after all.

It’s hard to verbalize my depression sometimes. That pains me. I’m meant to be good with words, not just on paper but in life as well. I like to think I’m a decent conversationalist when I get going. I can hold my own when I’m speaking in front of a crowd. But when it comes to telling people how I really feel, telling them with my actual voice and words… No. Not so much. To my detriment, because I end up internalizing everything even more.

Which throws me into a destructive spiral. What I’m internalizing in my mind has an effect on my body as well. It’s like my mind is trying to tell me to open up by making the rest of me slowly close down. Quiet little aches and pains are suddenly not so quiet (literally) or little. It has an effect on my moods, which in turn has an effect on the moods of the people around me. Which in turn makes me not someone you want to be around.

The little weevil on my shoulder. The black dog. The sneaky thought spiral. Whatever you call it, it has a way of – if not necessarily directly – making my day to day life fraught. With tension coiled tight in both body and brain. With moments where I shouldn’t be second-guessing myself but do. With silent frustration.

Writing about my depression and anxiety on this blog has kind of removed some of that frustration. But there’s always this niggling thought. Somewhere in the back of my head, the feeling that this shit doesn’t belong on my sex blog. That no-one wants to hear about my problems. Here’s the thing though – I’m finding it increasingly hard to care about that niggling thought.

The last few months have been slightly quiet on this blog because of that niggling thought. I’ve not been having much sex, nor have I been in the head space to write a lot about anything to do with it. And until now, I’ve been not okay with that. Not okay with the words not coming in the way they usually do. But right now, here and now and in this post, the words are coming regardless because I have had it with letting my depression and anxiety keeping me from my chosen way of catharsis.

This is a blog about sex, love, relationships and depression. These four big topics provide plenty of sub-topics: sex and its portrayal in mainstream film, the silly minutiae of living together, the white-hot light of fear that hits me in the chest during sexual play with my partner sometimes. This is also a blog where I have carved out a safe space for myself. And I am making this space safe again. My space for catharsis. My space for letting go in written words what I can not seem to say out loud.

Maybe, just maybe, it will help me say it out loud too.


PS – Hey. You. I see you. I hear you. I am walking on this path with you, whoever you are. I love you and I cherish you. You are never alone in this. As Jenny Lawson says in this post (and really, she’s fucking great when it comes to being frank about mental health) The ups and downs are always there for those of us with forever broken brains.  But that’s okay because you come back out.  The good is worth battling through the bad. And I will battle alongside you.

Continue Reading


The whirring of his electric shaver comes faintly through the closed door of our bedroom. If I close my eyes, I can imagine what he looks like when he’s doing it. Concentration on his face, a steady hand as he trims his stubble to his usual short, yet beautifully present length.

Facial hair has always done it for me. Not so much mustaches, but a good bit of stubble or even beard-age on a man. I don’t exactly remember how far back this one goes, but I do seem to remember it flaring up a few times during my years of watching ER.

Carter? Kovač? Benton? St. Doug Ross himself? All hotter with a little bit of beard going on. It was a kind of formal education in one of my most enduring turn-ons. And it’s an education that has left me with the perfect man to cater to that particular one.

I like his stubble. I’m a bit of a sucker for it, no matter how much or how little of it there is. It’s never a full thick beard, nor is it the polar opposite. It’s just right for me. I’m like Goldilocks with his facial hair. It’s a treat for me. A treat I love to stroke. A treat the feeling of which I like lingering around my lips after a kiss.

It tickles a bit, yes. But only a little bit. The good kind of tickle. The kind you remember with a grin. The kind you want to feel again, whether on your lips or on your cunt.

When he goes down on me, I don’t tend to mind it. Again, it’s just the littlest tickle.  He knows what he’s doing, and I know that I can in turn tell him if something’s not feeling right. Including the stubble. It works for us.

And I will always not mind it, because it’s part of him.

Continue Reading


He lays me down in his lap, and the world melts away.

I amaze myself with how quiet my brain is. The constant raging firestorm of depressive thoughts has temporarily retreated – much like the rain of the past few days. Like this, it feels so easy to slip into kisses with him, after slipping out of our clothes.  Easy too, is answering his question: what would you like to do?

I want to make out with him. Taste his lips and lose myself in something I seemed to have forgotten about. I want to remember the simple goodness of a long, languid kiss. And I want to touch, not to mention be touched. Feel the sting of a good spanking and the thrill of his fingers working my cunt.

What I didn’t know I wanted to feel is the comfort of lying in his lap. With my entire body a tableau for him to do with as he and I wished.

His fingers are like magic. They seem to reach something deep in my core. Going beyond just pleasuring me. Working whatever tensions I’ve been building in my body in the past few (hectic, tiring) weeks loose. First lying on his lap, then spread out in front of him. He fingerfucks me to the brink of ecstasy. I can’t remember ever hovering on the edge so deliciously, for so long.

“You okay? How are you feeling?”

And I want to say something sexy. I want to revel in my libido fighting back. I want to tell him how great he’s made me feel.  Want to tell him how much I love him for showing me that my sex drive isn’t a lost cause. But I can’t. Literally,  I can’t. I am too far gone in my bliss to actually make sense. It’s the point when the saucy turns into the silly.

I want to say something sexy.

What I end up saying – nay, practically slurring – is “SOFT!”



From the saucy to the silly, I tell my boyfriend (while naked and wrapped up in a cool duvet) that I’m feeling soft. Loved. Glowing. Calm.

And in hindsight, that one word did end up saying so much more than any string of dirty talk could have done in that moment.

Continue Reading

Got Your Back – for Kink of the Week

A few years ago, my boyfriend’s back inspired me to write a poem. I love the feel of it, the muscles and curves and softness. Running my fingers over the expanse of it, gently scratching… I never knew how sensual a back could be until I had his to touch.

So, as someone who adores her lover’s back, taking part in this edition of Kink of the Week (all about backs, but of course) was a no-brainer.

His back

We’re both creatures of touch. We like cuddling, lying entwined and letting the world fade away. And touching his back is one of the most potent ways of helping him relax. I am more than willing to give – as I said, I love the feel of it. He’s got the most gorgeous dip into the lower half of his back, leading down to his bottom. It’s the place I love to rest my hands, sliding them under his shirt or jumper and relishing the warmth and comfort.

It’s where I rest my hands when we kiss.

He’s ticklish. I kind of try to be very careful when I touch him, because understand that when I say ticklish, I mean he will fall the fuck apart in a sea of giggle-spasms. So when I touch his gorgeous back, I tend to put just enough pressure in to make it feel less like infinite feathers and more like actual my fingers. I scratch him, gently, which makes him make noises that make me smile just thinking about them.

His back is poetry to me.

My back

I am nothing if not a constant knot of muscle tension. My back has been a source of irritation for plenty of years, and my day job – as much as I love it – doesn’t tend to help. So to have loving touch lavished upon me is a treat for every sense.

Somewhere in our bedroom, I’ve still got a bottle of lavender massage oil. But, as regular readers of this blog know, I tend to lose bottles of fun stuff – and it’s not just lube. Still, massage oil isn’t something I really need when I’ve got his touch. Little scratches, like I give him. Kneading. Feathery flicks.

I’m getting shivers from thinking about it.

Is it a turn on? Perhaps, just because it’s intimacy and I am a sucker for intimacy. Good thing he is too. We love lavishing intimacy on each other, and we love each other’s backs.

It’s a sensation that makes me mellow. Something that makes me un-knot.


One day, early on in our relationship, I brought a purple tickle feather with me on a visit. It was still a time of getting to know each other’s bodies, not to mention getting to know the bit of my sexuality that involved a partner.

It was a big feather. Rather a bit of a piss to carry around with me on the train, but carry it with me I did. And I presented it to him with a glint in the eye – a can we? may I? 

That afternoon, I used the feather as a tool to get better acquainted with his body. Specifically his back. His poem of a back, his strong centre. I let a purple tickle feather be my guide to discovering an until then unknown quantity – one of many.

And wherever that damn thing is now, I can’t thank it enough for teaching me.


Continue Reading