Editor talk and a lot of links

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of Erotica

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of EroticaThe last of the Flappers, Jazz and Valentino release bonanza sees me tackling the Flappers Questionnaire – oohhh… Plus, a round-up of the lovely authors, some links to posts about the book and the obligatory buy links. Of course.

Why did you choose to edit an anthology about the Jazz Age? I’ve got a fascination with the era that stretches back quite some time. When I was looking for a theme for this anthology, the Jazz Age came up rather quickly as a subject.
What’s your favourite thing about the era? The creative boom that happened during the era – the first movie stars, the first talkie films, back when cinema was still so new that the act of going to the pictures was an event in itself. And the flappers, of course. Josephine Baker especially.
Do you have a favourite jazz tune? Minnie the Moocher by Cab Calloway. Steppin’ Out with My Baby, which was written by Irving Berlin and made into a jazz standard by Tony Bennett. Gershwin’s Summertime from Porgy and Bess. Yeah, I’ve got a couple.
If you could go back in time to the era, what would you do while there? Travel back to 1927 and watch The Jazz Singer at the pictures.
Do you have a favourite film set in the 20s? Singin’ In The Rain, and The Artist.
Cheerful Charleston or passionate Argentine Tango? Charleston followed by Argentine Tango followed by god knows what next…
Clara Bow or Louise Brooks? Louise Brooks, I reckon.
The Great Gatsby – like or dislike? Haven’t read the book, haven’t seen the film adaptations.
What’s your favourite 20s slang word? “Giggle water”, which was slang for alcohol.

The authors (and their stories) (and blogs)

  1. The Dance Partner – Lola White
  2. Aboard the Aquitania – Brent Archer
  3. The Sin in Syncopation – Blacksilk
  4. Life’s A Chocolate Cabaret – V.C.
  5. A Gal’s Gotta Make a Living Somehow… – T.G. Haynes
  6. The Nympho – Angela R. Sargenti
  7. Modern Motoring – Eva Starling*
  8. Songbird – Blair Erotica
  9. Limelight and Gin – Sasha Distan
  10. Tooting The Trumpet Boy’s Horn – V.C.
  11. Genuine Chemistry – Annabeth Leong
  12. The Argentine Tango – Tabitha Kitten

* Eva Starling doesn’t yet have a blog, unfortunately!

Flappers-related links and blog posts

Buy buy buy!

Amazon (USA)

Amazon (UK)

Amazon (Canada)

All Romance 

I’m going to be doing a few more guest posts on various websites in the next couple of weeks, so I will keep you all posted on when and where. Thank you for celebrating this anthology with us this weekend – something so quintessentially Jazz Age about a good celebration, whatever the reason.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to get my Charleston shoes on…

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Gals in the Limelight, Drinking Gin

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of Erotica

More Flappers, Jazz and Valentino release happiness, as T.G. Haynes and Sasha Distan introduce themselves and their stories – complete with excerpts from A Gal’s Gotta Make a Living Somehow… and Limelight and Gin, two sparkling stories with a common theme of sensual dancing…

T.G. Haynes sizzles and swings

1. Why did you want to write for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino?
One of the things I love most about writing is the challenges it poses and I simply could not resist the challenge of trying to capture the atmosphere of the 1920’s, create (hopefully) believable characters and allow them to give in to their hedonistic desires.
2. Tell us what your story is about and what inspired it.
The heroine of my story – Mae – is rather down on her luck at the outset of the tale and so decides to try her hand at burlesque. The first club she tries is run by the infamous ‘Texas’ Guinan.
Texas considers Mae’s act too raunchy for her club, so Mae tries another club nearby which caters to a much more adult audience. My story was loosely inspired by a whole host of old classic black and white movies I used to watch with my Grandparents when I was a child.
3. Do you have a favourite jazz tune?
It isn’t exactly Jazz, but I adore Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. (I’m probably making the link given the spectacular way in which the tune is use in the recent Baz Luhrman version of THE GREAT GATSBY)
4. If you could go back in time to the era, what would you do while there?
Get drunk with Ernest Hemingway.
Sleeve artwork for the Once Upon a Time in America5. Do you have a favourite film set in the 20s?
It’s not set solely in the 1920’s, but I think Sergio Leone’s ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA is one of the greatest films ever made. Epic in the true sense of the word.
6. Cheerful Charleston or passionate Argentine Tango?
Cheerful Charleston.
7. Clara Bow or Louise Brooks?
Clara Bow.
8. The Great Gatsby – like or dislike?
LOVE!
9. What’s your favourite 20s slang word?
Cockamaymie

Excerpt from A Gal’s Gotta Make a Living Somehow…

“You come to see Texas?” he asked.
I nodded.
He closed the door behind me then, with a jerk of his head, said, “Follow me.”
I did so down a long dark corridor that led into the heart of the club. I expected to find the place empty that early in the morning; it wasn’t. A suave, sophisticated gentleman was playing some kind of rhapsody on the piano, which seemed to serve as a wakeup call to a number of patrons who were draped across chairs and tables, clearly having spent the night there. The gorilla led me over to a table where one of the guests was sitting upright, facing away from me. The dinner jacket he was wearing looked like it cost my than my apartment and the trilby resting on his head sure didn’t look like it was an off-the-peg number from Sears and Roebuck. The gorilla grunted something I didn’t quite catch, then ambled off. I figured that the owner of the trilby was the front of house manager. I figured wrong.
The trilby wearer called across to the pianist, “Hey, Georgie, knock it off a minute, will you?”
The voice was one I recognised and it wasn’t that of a man. Taking off the hat, she turned and faced me. She grinned, shook out her hair and said, “How’s it going, chump?’
Coming from Texas Guinan I took “chump” to be a compliment. After all, she’d virtually turned the word into a catchphrase. She then asked my name.
“Mae,” I replied.
“Lose the glasses,” she commanded. Obediently, I did so. “Ever go by a stage name?”
“No,” I lied. The way her eyes narrowed as she examined my features I wasn’t convinced that I’d got away with the lie.
She gestured towards the stage. “Why don’t you show me what you can do?”
I hesitated, momentarily, but she didn’t buy into my innocent act, so I got up on stage and proceeded to strip.
Ten minutes later, after gathering my clothes and re-dressing, I approached Texas once more and asked her what she thought. She gave me a lopsided smile and shook her head.
“What’s wrong?” I asked. “Didn’t you like it?”
“Sure,” she replied. “But we got laws in this city, sister, and, much as I hate to abide by them, your act is way too hot for me.”
I tried to plead with her, assuring her that I could tone it down, but it was no use, so I thanked her for her time and headed for the exit. She caught up with me just as I reached the door.
“Hey, not so fast.”
I turned, hope springing eternal.
She dug into her inner jacket pocket, fished out a scented business card and handed it over to me. The card bore the name of a club: The Blue Lagoon. Texas proceeded to tell me it was just around the corner, down the alley.
“I figure it’s more your style, and I mean that as a compliment,” she said. “Tell ’em I sent you and ask for Kelly.”
“How can I ever thank you?”
Texas grinned. “Try using your imagination.”
Hoping I’d read the hint correctly, I leant forwards and planted a kiss on her lips. I’d only meant for it to be a quick peck, but her lips were so sensational I found myself melting into them. As we embraced, I felt her breasts pressing against my own. Her right hand started to wander down my back until it came to rest against my left buttock. Slowly, she began to trace the curvature of the cheek with the tips of her fingers. It felt delicious, but I forced myself to pull away from her. Much as I loathed to, I had to put business before pleasure.
Texas didn’t understand my reluctance, so I explained, adding, “If I get taken on at the Lagoon, you can always come and see my act sometime.”
“If?” She laughed. “The way you kiss, ‘if’ won’t come into the equation.”
“Thanks for the vote of confidence,” I said.
“Don’t mention it,” she replied. Flipping me a casual salute, she turned and sashayed back into the club. I watched until she closed the door behind her, then made my way down the alley to the Blue Lagoon.

Hitting the limelight with Sasha Distan

1. Why did you want to write for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino?
It seemed like a good idea at the time. OK, bad answer. Having never written a period piece, I wanted the challenge and I wanted to push myself to do something different. I also really wanted to write a strong female lead, who wasn’t romantically involved, but whom I still liked and respected.
2. Tell us what your story is about and what inspired it.
Limelight and Gin is about a young man called Eugene who loves to dance and is the favourite backing dancer for Miss Ruby Rose Weston. He also has a bit of a thing for the new boy, a dusky Argentinian with a thing for chewing gum. Between under the table drinks at the bar and with a bit of help from Ruby Rose, they manage to fall head over tap shoes in love.
3. Do you have a favourite jazz tune?
I love jazz as a sort of background radiation noise, but there aren’t any specific songs that I could name.
4. If you could go back in time to the era, what would you do while there?
Drive a really awesome car, drink illegally and play cards in a smoky room.
Screencap of Queen Latifah as Mama Morton in Chicago5. Do you have a favourite film set in the 20s?
Chicago. I can’t not love Queen Latifah.
6. Cheerful Charleston or passionate Argentine Tango?
Tango. Always.
7. Clara Bow or Louise Brooks?
Who?
8. The Great Gatsby – like or dislike?
Neither especially. The film version did have great visuals though.
9. What’s your favourite 20s slang word?
Hot sketch – a real character.

Excerpt from Limelight and Gin

By the end of the week, they had their six dancers, and Ruby spent the whole of Friday drilling them hard, perfecting every step for her show.
“It’s going to be beautiful darlin’.” She stole Eugene’s cigarette and took a long drag, blowing a plume of smoke between her deep red lips. “Such a vision. We must make sure that you boys,” she gestured from him to one of the newer recruits, a strong young Argentinian man with dark eyes, “get me onto the piano during the bridge. It’s all for fucking naught if I’m not there in time for the last chorus.”
“Yes ma’am.”
“Yes Miss Ruby.” The young man dipped his head quickly.
“Aww, you’re a doll.” Ruby stood, shook down her tiny pleated skirt and handed Eugene back his cigarette. “Take good care of him Eugene, I think this must be his first time.”
Eugene watched their star walk away across the stage. She would chat to the other dancers, and retire to her dressing room. Most people assumed she drank, smoked and entertained gentlemen callers there, but Eugene knew better than to think she would do so in the middle of the day. In the break they had between rehearsal and show time, Ruby would no doubt be practicing her vocal scales or designing new choreography for her next act.
He finished his cigarette and glanced over at the newcomer Ruby had patronised in her flirty manner.
“You OK there kid?” Eugene gave the boy his best smile. “She’s a real hot-sketch of a canary, but no one treats their dancers better.”
“She works us hard enough.” The young Argentinian flexed and rolled his shoulders before starting to stretch his arms. “Not that I’m complaining, it’s good to have work.”
“What was your name again?” Eugene asked, skimming over the young man with his eyes. He hadn’t been concentrating too hard on his own steps to ignore how well the boy danced, and how smooth and clean the lines of his body were: the strong pointed jaw, dark eyes, and thick wavy chocolate brown hair.
“Nazarius Herrera.” He smiled tightly. “Naz. Everyone calls me Naz.”
“Eugene Weller, it’s nice to meet you.” They shook hands firmly. “This your first dancing gig in the city?”
“Yeah. I’m not doing too badly am I?” Naz’s smile softened and Eugene was sure he hadn’t imagined the quick flick up and down of the boy’s eyes as he was checked out.
“You’re doing swell. Just be there for the lift. And remember to step back in time or Ruby’ll end up kicking you in the face with her kitten heels.” Eugene stood up and brushed down his slacks. And that would be a tragedy, he thought to himself. “Time for a nap and a spot of dinner before the show. See you in a few hours?”
“Sure.” Eugene glanced back at the boy as he left the club, and wondered what it might take for the young man to want to join him one day.

Buy here

Amazon (USA)

Amazon (UK)

Amazon (Canada)

All Romance 

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Sailors, Trumpet Boys and Chocolate Cabarets

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of Erotica

Day two of the Flappers, Jazz and Valentino release fun! Two more authors are sharing the inspiration behind their stories – meet Brent Archer and V.C.

Trumpet boys and chocolate cabarets with V.C.

Why did you want to write for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino?

It’s not often that a 1920’s themed anthology call comes along, and because I’ve LOVED the Jazz Age for as long as I can remember, I would’ve been crazy to not have jumped on such a wonderful opportunity!

Tell us what your story is about and what inspired it.

I have two stories in this anthology: “Life’s A Chocolate Cabaret” and “Tooting the Trumpet Boy’s Horn.” “Tooting the Trumpet Boy’s Horn” is about a bisexual married couple who, after realizing that fooling around with gangsters and flappers wasn’t enough, they want to make whoopee with a musician. They have their own band called The Damned Hot-Cha, and they wanted to find a new trumpet player anyway, so they use their mischievous wiles to get what they want as soon as possible. “Life’s A Chocolate Cabaret” is similar in that it’s about a drag performer who knows exactly what he wants, and one of the ways he gets it is with his natural charm, talents, and lots of chocolate. Both stories were basically inspired by my passion for vaudeville, drag, jazz, and the 1920s in general. I’d like to think that these stories do service to those things that I adore.

Do you have a favourite jazz tune?

Oh, way too many. I’d say the jazz tune that tops it for me, though, is Cab Calloway’s “Minnie the Moocher.”

If you could go back in time to the era, what would you do while there?

I’d mingle with the flappers and dance with them in a speakeasy while dressed as a gangster! Maybe sneak a few kisses with them. And drink and listen to as much live jazz (maybe Louis Armstrong, perhaps?) as possible until the time machine takes me back to 2014.

Do you have a favourite film set in the 20s?

Pandora’s Box, hands down! I mean, c’mon, Louise Brooks was one hot dame!

Old Tango postcard -1919Cheerful Charleston or passionate Argentine Tango?

Argentine Tango

Clara Bow or Louise Brooks?

Louise Brooks, of course!

The Great Gatsby – like or dislike?

I fell in love with it at first read, and have read it a countless number of times. The book is great, the movies, not so much. The Great Gatsby is one of those masterpieces that’s a class of its own.

What’s your favourite 20s slang word?

Cat’s Meow

And here are the social networking links in case people want to follow after reading the interview:

Blog: Vanessa Clark (V.C.) -Author of LGBTI Erotica, Glitterotica, Wicked Romance
Twitter: @vcerotica
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vcerotica

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Songbirds and Genuine Chemistry – More Flappers Inspiration

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of Erotica

Continuing the Flappers, Jazz and Valentino release fest, we’re talking about inspiration behind the stories. Blair Erotica and Annabeth Leong share what made them submit to the anthology.

The story ofSongbird by Blair Erotica

Ziegfried Follies publicity shot of Fanny/Fannie Brice - photographer unknown and uncredited
Fannie/Fanny Brice, in a Ziegfield Follies publicity shot.

I grew up listening to music of all types and many of my favourite tunes came from the twenties. I devoured biographies of the musicians and singers. Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Fannie Brice and Sophie Tucker all left their mark on me. So, when I heard about this anthology, the first thing I thought of was the music and the people who performed it.
My brain can’t separate the twenties from New York, Chicago and Paris. It’s as if those are the only places where the twenties really happened. That’s another fiction, of course, but it holds a truth. For jazz musicians of the era, and especially for the black musicians and singers, Paris was the place they could be truly recognized as performers. Race music was just music there. That meant that the freedoms that came with such a roar in the twenties were amplified for black performers in Paris. And if the twenties was about anything, it was about pushing the limits of the social envelope.
My story attempts to capture the joy, the confusion, and even uncertainty, that came with that upheaval. The little songbird finds her way in an increasingly crazy world.

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Flappers, Jazz and Valentino is out now!

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of Erotica

Cover for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino - edited by Jillian Boyd and published by House of EroticaA couple of months ago, I told you all that I was editing my first ever anthology. And, as if by blood, sweat and author/editor tears magic, today is the release day for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino, that very anthology!

So, because it’s a grand occasion, this entire weekend will see the blog run over by anthology-related goodness. There are mini-interviews with a couple of the authors, we’ve got posts about the inspiration behind their stories, and I’ll be telling you all about the whys, whats, and hows of first-time anthology editing.

If you’ve got a question for me, or any of the authors, Tweet it with the hashtag #20sErotica. Or leave a comment on any of the blog posts this weekend. Or go and visit the authors on their respective blogs. Options a-plenty!

Flappers, Jazz and Valentino is also making its ways around the blogs. Yesterday, it was featured on the Smutters website, where I shared some lovely excerpts with the world. Go and read if you want a sneak peek!

The lovely Lola White kicks off the anthology with her story, The Dance Partner. She’s sharing her inspiration behind Kitty and Floyd’s wild night (complete with police raid and all) with us right here.

1. Why did you want to write for Flappers, Jazz and Valentino?

I saw the call for submissions and immediately remembered the stories my great-aunt used to tell me. She was a little young to be a flapper, but she was a keen observer of the times. All the things she’d told me came rushing back, and I knew I had a story to write.

2. Tell us what your story is about and what inspired it.

My aunt used to tell me about the girls in her neighborhood getting dolled up for a night on the town, so I knew I wanted my story to take place in a dance hall. My grandmother is an American history buff and loves television shows about Capone and Dillon, so I decided to marry those two ideas – dancing and bootlegging – together.

The Dance Partner takes place at Siren’s Song and Dance Hall, a spot where lovers flirt and couples dance the night away. Kitty is modern woman, working her shift at Siren’s and flirting with Floyd, a driver for a local bootlegging operation. She’s tired of the death and sadness they’ve been steeped in since the war and only wants to have fun, now that it’s over. So when the police raid Siren’s, Kitty sees her chance to have a little fun and provide a hell of a good reason for Floyd to be at the dance hall.

3. Do you have a favourite jazz tune?

Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, how could I choose a favorite song? But, even though she came a little later, Nina Simone is my favorite jazz singer. I could listen to her all day long.

4. If you could go back in time to the era, what would you do while there?

If I was transported back to the ‘20s, I would see the musicians that have become legends in American culture. But then I’d get back to my own time as quickly as possible because that era may have been great for music, but it was a time of awful social injustice.

5. Do you have a favourite film set in the 20s?

Lolita, The Color Purple, Legends of the Fall, Giant…there are a lot of movies set in the ‘20s I can watch again and again, but my favorite is It’s A Wonderful Life, which my family gathers together around every Christmas to watch.

6. Cheerful Charleston or passionate Argentine Tango?

Who doesn’t love a good tango?

7. Clara Bow or Louise Brooks?

Clara Bow.

8. The Great Gatsby – like or dislike?
I’ve never read or seen The Great Gatsby

9. What’s your favourite 20s slang word?
Fire Extinguisher. It was used in place of ‘chaperone’ and I can’t think of a more fitting term for a person whose sole role was to stop things from getting hot and heavy. But I’m partial to Barneymugging, too.

Read Lola’s awesome post, Why The Twenties Roared, on her blog.

And you can buy Flappers, Jazz and Valentino right hereabouts:

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I’m Editing An Anthology! – Call For Submissions: Flappers, Jazz and Valentino

*steps up to the mike, clears throat*

So, ehm… I’m editing an anthology for House of Erotica….

Yes, you’ve read that right – I’m editing my first (of hopefully many more) anthology! I’m flapping with excitement, I am. So, if you’ll allow me to get into writer mode for a second…

The anthology, which, as I said, will be published by House of Erotica, is called Flappers, Jazz and Valentino – which gives you some idea of what I’m looking for. Invoke for me the spirit of the Roaring Twenties, of the first talkies, dancing girls, the speakeasy, glamour, Josephine Baker, Charleston dancing, anything you can think of.

And make it steamy. Make it so steamy, my glasses will fog up upon reading your story. Trust me, that’s a sign that you’re doing it right.

I’m ridiculously excited to be editing this anthology – and I look forward to seeing what you come up with. Here’s the call for submissions in full – with the pretty cover for you to enjoy. And if you want to contribute, I’m looking forward to reading your story!

Flappers, Jazz and Valentino

AW MA GAWD, it's so pretty!
AW MA GAWD, it’s so pretty!

Editor: Jillian Boyd

Publisher: House of Erotica

Deadline: March 30th, 2014 (earlier submissions preferred)

Word count: 3k – 7k

Theme: Historical erotica

Pairings: Any

Heat Level: Anything from romantic and erotic to burning hot

Payment: Royalties will be split 40% of the net profits with contributing authors, exact values will be given once we know how many stories will be in the final anthology.

Rights: Six Years

Submission limit: up to two stories per author.

Author Jillian Boyd is on the hunt for hot historical erotica – stories set in those heady days of the Roaring Twenties. Whether it’s the glamour of the flapper, the spirit of Gatsby or the whisky-soaked excesses of the speakeasies, I want you to make the Twenties sizzle and spark with red-hot lust.

The stories needn’t all be about flappers and gangsters (although I’d love to have some in the collection) – let your imagination fly! But don’t forget the storyline – and the sizzling sex, of course. I want characters that fly off the page and spark off each other. I want fun, frolics and occasional frivolity.

As far as the ending goes, a Happy-Ever-After is good, but I have no problems with a Happy-For-Now.

The No-No’s: No scat, bestiality, under age sex, golden showers, rape or forced sex or incest of any kind and necrophilia.

Formatting: Please format your story in Times New Roman, 12pt font, double spaced with each new paragraph indented by ½ inch. Use quotation marks in dialogue. Since this is a UK publisher, I would love it if you use UK spelling and grammar in your story/stories.

Submit your story by emailing it as an attachment with the following filename.

“TitleOfYourStory_YourPenName_TwentiesAnthology”

In the body of the email, please include your legal name, pen name, word count, the type of pairing in the story (eg. M/F, F/F, etc…) and a short author bio.

Send your submission(s) to jboydwrites(at)gmail(dot)com – you can also reach me there if you have any questions or need clarification.

Authors must own their rights to the stories and not have had them published anywhere else. Please note the publisher has final approval over the stories included in the manuscript.

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