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.

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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.

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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.

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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.


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Doxytus Interuptus

I think about wanking a lot. Hell, I dream about wanking pretty constantly, when I’m not either having vivid sex dreams or utterly terrifying nightmares. Funnily enough though, I never quite get around to actually doing it.

The inner monologue goes verily thus –

Libido Brain : You should totally have a wank.

Me: But nah though. 

LB: That’s not an argument, mate. Come on. Indulge yourself. It’ll relax you. It’ll make you feel good. 

Me: So will a nap. 

LB: Naps do not lead to orgasms. Wanks do. Go on! No-one around, you can be as loud as you want. You can even get the Doxy out. 



It’s a very, very tiring interior monologue. It happens pretty much every time I have a day off, in that blissfully quiet time where the house is (almost) empty and the morning is full of unknown wonder/a to do list the length of my arm. Unlike my boyfriend, I have a pretty fluctuating schedule. So at least once a week I find myself alone in the mornings, and in a prime position for a long, indulgent wank.

And the other day, miraculously, that interior monologue vanished in thin air. I wasn’t just thinking about wanking, I was actively getting the Doxy out (because a lot of my filthiest wank fantasies – by which I mean fantasies in which I am actually wanking, not ones I have during a wank –  the Doxy features quite prominently), fluffing cushions and settling in a prime frig position.

It’s the position he likes me in when he’s going down on me. He kneels at the side of the bed, I lie in front of him with my legs open and resting on his shoulders. It’s this image I hold onto in my head (the actual wank fantasy) as I crank up the power on the beastly toy. The freedom of doing a Spinal Tap and cranking to eleven, quite frankly, is intoxicating. The roar, the buzz, the mild freaking out when I remember that the Doxy can go really fucking hard and maybe I should turn it down a notch anyway lest I get a whole new type of wankers cramp.

But I manage to take it to a reasonable speed. And I try to ride the wave for as long as I can, riding the soft head of the toy and losing myself in the fantasy of his tongue working its magic.

The arousal builds at triple speed. I can’t ever last long with the Doxy. It is just not physically possible – it’s so maddeningly intense that I am grabbed by the collar and pulled towards my climax. It doesn’t take me that long to get to the very edge of pleasure, and I am prepared to fall hard.

But then I don’t. My orgasm fizzes out, like a firework that changes its mind as it’s going off. It takes me seconds too long to figure out why – as I snap out of the haze and back to reality, I have to keep myself from facepalming.

It’s me. I’m why. Because I have somehow managed to grab on to the Doxy so hard that my fingers slid straight onto the OFF button. I am my own coitus interuptus. Doxytus Interuptus, if you will.

Grumbling, I sit up, pull my trousers back up and go to unplug the toy. In the end, it does turn out to be a nap that makes me feel good.

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Sound of Frustration – for Masturbation Monday

Masturbation Monday is the weekly erotic writing meme hosted by Kayla Lords. From time to time, I like to play along… (click the picture to see who else did). 


If her frustration were a sound, she imagined it to be far deeper than the usual grunt. A level just beyond the cliché, for when it really ran as skin deep as hers did that morning.

She lay on her bed, naked, with the morning sun painting reflections on her bare back. An already too-hot spring morning. A too quiet flat. A too empty space next to her. Next to her. On top of her, between her thighs, underneath her, in her… She groaned, thrusting her hips into the mattress to alleviate the pressure of lust growing in her core.

One hand snaked down, and she wriggled to accommodate it between her legs. She was wet because of course she was. As of late, wet seemed to be the basis state she operated in, no thanks to the mounting vividness of her dreams. Like little dirty movies, running through her head, all interweaving as one great network of sexually frustrated threads.

Damn it. She really did miss her.

They’d joked before she left, in that casual way that had become their signature style. Casual everything. Sex, chat, giggles, jokes. “You’re not going to miss me when I’m gone.” she said,  her eyes sparkling brightly. She could see her in front of her when she closed her own. That easy grin on her face. The curves of her body, the softness of her belly.

She ground her hips into her hand, letting out a moan as her fingers brushed her wanting clit. She did miss her. Goddamnit, every day that went by without her seemed to last longer and longer. Halfway around the world was the woman whose arms she’d grown so fond of, the ache of not being in them was overwhelming.

She rolled onto her back, letting her legs fall open and giving in to the pressure of missing her touch. Missing her taste. Her laugh. Her voice, the smoothness of her it like a burning whiskey.

Goddamn, girl. I do miss you. Come back soon and I’ll show you just how much.

If her frustration were a sound, she’d imagine it to be far deeper than the usual grunt. No grunt, after all, could communicate how frustrating it was to be falling in love with someone so far away.


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Project Emmanuelle – Sexual Spells

Sexual Spells title

OK. I’m not going to lie. I’ve said it on Twitter and I’ll say it again here: this one nearly did me in. This is probably the fifth time I’ve restarted writing about Emmanuelle: Sexual Spells and I am determined to make it the one that sticks because I desperately want to move on and finish the Vermeer era.

Why did Sexual Spells nearly do me in? Why was this one in particular the one that caused me the most sweats so far (and not in a YE GODS THIS IS SEXY kind of way)? Because, my friends, this is the one where The Private Collection just goes off the rails and stops even remotely trying. To make sense. To have a coherent plot. To even have Emmanuelle as someone who actively participates in that plot.

This is Sexual Spells. Buckle up, motherfuckers, and let’s ride this pony home.

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Step In The Right Direction

It’s a Saturday night and I’m parked at our desk, scheduling the week’s tweets for Dreams of Spanking. Half of me is sweating on how to phrase the tweet for a particular scene, half of me is sweating because it’s a flurry of hot as hell spanking action dancing in front of my eyes (and a little bit of me is also sweating because of the stifling and indecisive mini-heatwave going on). I get that familiar wriggle, that one where my body’s temporarily wrested the control from the weevil in my brain and is making me very aware of the spark of a need catching fire. The need to be spanked, to feel his hand and hear the sound and let my body luxuriate in the feeling that it is being listened to.

Pleasingly, and surprisingly, it’s my body that keeps hold on the controls. It may or may not have something to do with the fact that, at some point, I hear the front door thump shut and see Irish Ladd jump in the back of a taxi with his mates who’ve come to pick him up for a night out. Empty room to the left of us, empty room to the right. Stuck in the middle, with plenty of opportunity to not give a single fuck about the noises being made.

So I grab that opportunity by the collar and strip off, leaving on just my t-shirt. I drape myself over the bed, telling him as best as I can what I need right then.

And he obliges gladly. He starts off slow, but I love a good slow start. Plenty of time to build up, really get the heat flowing. And it flows, setting my body alight in a way only he can. Making me wet in a way that I’ve not been for such a long time, opening me up and rendering me giddy with the need for an orgasm.

“Wow, you’re… you’re really wet!”


“Yeah… amazing…”

I can tell this time’s different from the way my voice is no longer controlled, measured. In its stead is a natural huskiness, a pleasure-cottoned slur of sound and words.

“… Can you get another finger inside me?”

He can.

He can, without effort, get three fingers deep. Three fingers which I pulse around as I frig myself to an orgasm so thunderously gorgeous, so wet and sloppy and wonderful that when he tells me that my come’s drenched the sheets, I’m ever so slightly amazed at remembering how good it feels to be completely in my body and out of my brain.

Heck, I’m still amazed right now, as I’m writing this. Amazed, and more than a little bit giggly. Step in the right direction? I can but hope…

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Wicked Wednesday #221: Read It and Weep

I could write epic poetry about how important books are to my life. Not just as a writer myself, but as a person who has at various points in her life turned to the written word for escapism, inspiration, knowledge, a laugh much needed, catharsis craved. I read voraciously – fuck, I’m reading right now, in between writing this and bumbling around online. As this week’s Wicked Wednesday theme is reading (it’s fundamental, don’t cha know?), I thought I’d forgo writing flash fiction for once, in favour of some idle musings about reading and books (with recommendations added in for good measure).

How I read

As a writer, I’ve found that keeping my reading choices as broad as possible (so, not just keeping to erotica as my be-all-end-all genre) has helped me to improve my craft so much. Bits and bobs of inspiration, whether it be a new way of telling a story,  or a jumping-off point for a plot, come and tack themselves on the notice board in my Memory Palace. It’s much the same with film, one of the other major cornerstones in my life. Atmospheres, words, moments, all sticking in my head like raw material. Fabric waiting patiently to be stitched together into a quilt of story.

As a person, outside of what I do when I’m doing writer-y stuff, books have been so important to me throughout my life that, if you asked me when this love for the written started I’d probably ehhhmmm… myself inside out. I’ve always read. I’ve always loved losing myself in stories, both fictional and (later in life) fact. As someone who has spent most of her adult life battling depression, reading is one of the things that still gives me relief. It makes the endless feedback loop of shite in my head come to a momentary halt. It makes my morning commute way less painful. It makes my heart sing to hold a book, it makes me giddy to come across something and think YES YOU, I WILL READ YOU NEXT.

Both points of view feed into each other, as much as they can stand separately. I read to enjoy both as a person and as a writer. It just means that as a writer my brain will be attuned slightly differently to the book in front of me.

What I read

Would you be at all surprised that my answer to this would be “fucking anything that I like the look and sound of, mate”? Because it totally is.

Okay, but seriously, narrow it down a bit

In fiction: sci-fi, fantasy, romantic comedy, thriller, YA.

In non-fiction: biographies, works on sex and relationships, works on feminism, works on mental health, comedy, investigative journalism, histories of film

In comics: Marvel, Image Comics, stand-alone graphic novels, Kate Beaton, Noelle Stevenson, Matthew Inman, Allie Brosh, Erika Moen.

Online: any long-reads that pique my interest

Offline: my house is basically wall to wall copies of Total Film/Empire/SFX/Sci-Fi Now

And in erotica?

Themed short story anthologies (anything that catches my eye, again), erotic romance, thrillers (think Kristina Lloyd and Tiffany Reisz).

Most recent read

Last Call at the Nightshade Lounge by Paul Krueger (which is great).

Most recent thing what you wrote yourself?

Stuck with You: A Short Erotic Romance.

Recommend me something!

Right, I could sling titles and names at you all day, but these are off the top of my head.

– Carrie by Stephen King

– Mad Girl by Bryony Gordon

– Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson (also Let’s Pretend This Never Happened)

– Any of The Oatmeal collections (drawn by Matthew Inman)

– Hark, A Vagrant!/Step Aside Pops by Kate Beaton

– Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem and Other Things That Happened by Allie Brosh

The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie

– Sex Criminals by Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky

– Patsy Walker AKA Hellcat! by Kate Leth and Brittany Williams

– Anything you find online by Hayley Campbell

– The Diary of a Teenage Girl by Phoebe Gloeckner

– Bad Feminist by Roxanne Gay

Drawing Blood by Molly Crabapple

– A Gentleman in the Streets by Alisha Rai

The Psychopath Test by Jon Ronson

– Let it Shine by Alyssa Cole

Seriously, I could go on for a while.


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

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World’s Least Satisfying

It’s hard to remember the last time – or any time – I had such an unsatisfying wank as the one I did the other day.

Himself had gone off to the North for the weekend, on an adventure with a few mates. We were house sitting at the time, so my only company for those two days was a cluster of cats. Now, I spent most of that weekend either at my day job or in front of the telly doing my other job, with one eye on the Olympics. The rest of the time, I was seemingly permanently clouded in a haze of tired and achy.

Maybe, in hindsight, a wank wasn’t the right solution after all. My brain managed to convince me it was, though, because my brain can quite often be a great big dickweed.

Go on, it said to me. It’s late, you’re mildly comfortable… 

And? “It’s late” and “I’m mildly comfortable” are not reasons I should be masturbating. In fact, considering I’d dragged the duvet downstairs and had my netbook perched on my lap and a cat precariously close to my face, comfortable wasn’t so much a thing I was as a lie in general.

I wasn’t at all comfortable because I was bone-tired and walking through the endless, boring as fuck mists of a depressive episode. The kind where Nothing has a capital N and you’re existing in a constant state of low-key fed up with your horrid mind.

I also wasn’t comfortable because there was another cat, perched in front of the TV, glaring at me rather openly. As if to say I know what you’re contemplating and I don’t like it one bit, you weird human.

But still, I gave in to my brain and slipped my fingers down the waistband of my pants. And to be honest, I wish I hadn’t. I wish I’d have just gotten on with what I was doing. It felt forced. It felt like I was doing it for the sake of reminding myself that yeah, I do still have a wank, thank you very much. It wasn’t a bad wank, but it was a wank that, if it were a film, I would have seen it through to the end but gotten up at the start of the credits and grumbled about it being a waste of my bloody time.

That’s not the wanks I want to be having. And I hope to fuck I find out what’s going on there, because I do not want masturbation to become another task on an endless tick list.

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