Ten Days in … paperback … soon

 

A special place exists in my heart for this story for many reasons, but appropriately, it means a lot because it was my first attempt at romance.

I’ve spent a month working on the manuscript to convert it to a paperback. Fortunately, now that I’m retired, a month in writing terms doesn’t mean every odd hour I can squeeze in—it means an average eight-hour writing day; every day.

 

Why so long for a simple task?

Any author who has performed such a task will know the change from digital format to paper would normally be a case of rearranging the front and back matter. This story had already been subject to two makeovers since the original version in December 2013, but it needed a total overhaul.

The new version will have the same cover but with a revised strapline.

As in all aspects of life I felt I had evolved sufficiently as a writer to appreciate where I had got it right, and crucially—where I’d continued to get it wrong.

What’s different in the new edition?

My first pass was to print the manuscript and perform a brutal red-pen edit on hard copy.

Judging from many comments on Facebook and recent reviews, my style has changed, or as I like to think; improved.

a) I removed most of the dialogue tags and replaced them with character activity.

b) I amended the sexual scenes from what was bordering on ‘erotica’, and reduced it to ‘steamy romance’. For the most part, it is now closer to ‘romance’.

Suffice to say it’s been quite a journey. The characters continue to enjoy the story, but they’re subtle in what they tell the reader about their private moments together.

 

Okay, so why did I ‘reduce’ the level of sexual matter?

There were a number of reasons, but mainly, it didn’t belong. The story is a romance and not intended to perform the same role as strong erotica. As with a couple of my books I’ve been fortunate in hearing from readers privately, and more than one was concerned by explicit sex.

I enjoy writing in a wide variety of genre and just as I like to have guns, explosives and fights, I also like to write about tenderness, relationships and let’s face it—sex. 

My Tom Benson – Erotica site has now been up and running for a year, so if you’d like to see how I indulge my literary desire in that direction; take a look. The catalogue is growing steadily and the next erotic novel will be released in May 2018.

On the subject of releasing things, Ten Days in Panama (revised April 2018) is now available in eBook, and the paperback will be available within the month.

I’ve remained true to the original story with regard to character development and the plot.

It would be wrong not to say a public thank you to fellow author and distant friend, Carmen Lopez (author of Alone: and other short stories). We became acquainted through reviewing each other’s poetry on an international poetry site. I moved on into the world of short stories and novel writing, and Carmen performed the duties of being my first beta reader.

The inspiration for Ten Days in Panama evolved from learning about Carmen’s profession and where she lived. Indeed, the first cover for the book was designed by Carmen’s partner, Bryce.

For anybody who is now so excited that they can’t wait for the paperback, here are links to the digital version of Ten Days in Panama:

Amazon preview/buy                      BookLinker – Universal

Thank you as always to those who stop by.

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Erotica: The Long and Short of it … Part 1 of 3

 

Poetry Vol 2 - 150516

Like it or loathe it – erotica is one of the oldest genres of storytelling. You can dress it up (no pun intended), in a pretty cover, or go black cover with a suggestive title, but the introduction of the eReader has enabled many people to indulge and enjoy the reading of sexual adventures which had previously been so near … yet, so far.

The erotica eBook market is a gift to those who would have looked at titles in a bookstore, but never lifted the book. In many cases it would be due to the books being out of reach. Peer pressure, embarrassment, upbringing, or whatever reason might have stopped thousands of folk from buying into this area of reading, but no more.

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What is the appeal to a reader?

Two areas come to mind, although there are more.SS2 - Coming Around 150516

1. For those who have, or have so far had a less than adventurous sex life it gives an insight to how things might be, even in the imagination. We can all dream.

2. The erotica eBook opens doors (mainly bedroom doors), and it allows the voyeuristic aspect of our nature a little exercise.

‘I don’t have a voyeuristic aspect …’

‘I just love the stories …’

‘It’s porn in words …’

Whatever your attitude to it, I’m here to tell you I enjoy reading it (if it’s well written), and I enjoy writing it too. Yes, I’m still in the early days in writing the genre, but for me, it gives the same release of imagination other writers have when working on paranormal, historic romance, or any other specialised topic.

I will continue to write thrillers and romance, but I’m unashamedly erotica-curious. I have a strong desire to explore erotica, and I’d like to see which type of writing works best.

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Highland Games - 1 - CougarI produced a few pieces of erotica in my Love and Romance poetry volume. My short story collection Coming Around: and other erotica stories is popular, although only a handful of brave people have cared to leave a review – but they’re good reviews, so I’m delighted.

My debut erotica novel Give & Take: A Tale of Erotica sells on a regular basis, but again sadly isn’t supported by many reviews.

It was while considering story length it occurred to me to produce a hybrid – the erotica novella. Thus far I have one title out there, but I’ve already made notes towards the others in what will be a minimum five-part series.

How do I intend to capture and hold interest with the series?

Each of the stories will be based in the location which is introduced in the first novella Highland Games – 1, but as the series progresses I’ll concentrate on a different angle of sexual persuasion.

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What’s coming next in this three-part post?Give & Take 150516

In the second part of this article I’ll explain the whys and wherefores of me getting into bed with this genre. At the end of Part 2 I’ll give you a hint of what’s coming in Part 3.

If you’ve taken anything from this first part (other than the links to my books), I’m certain you’ll enjoy how I first discovered my desire to experiment … and later in Part 3, we’ll go under the covers, or between the sheets if you prefer.

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Give and Take – the idea

Any venture which involves a partnership requires ‘give and take’, and it was from this perspective that I chose to attempt one of my latest projects.

Regular visitors to this blog will be aware that I said, if my book, Coming Around and other erotic stories proved successful and received positive reviews, I’d consider writing an erotic novel.

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Guess what?

Okay, so I haven’t made enough money from that title to retire to a little place in the country. Neither will I be swapping spit (or anything else) with a famous author who made a fortune from a badly-plotted erotic novel which appealed to so many people – but not to me.

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How have I measured success for that particular experimental collection?

912FmvSHzYL._SL1500_1. It has been bought on a regular basis since publication.
2. It has been read by both male and female readers.
3. It has amassed a staggering seven reviews … but they are all 5*.
4. It has caused no less than four individuals to write to me asking if I’d ever consider writing an erotic novel.

That’s successful enough to give me the excuse.

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What is Give and Take about?

Essentially, it is about a relationship, and I’ve chosen to focus on the weakest part of that relationship, which is the couple’s sex-life.

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How can you write anything meaningful about a couple’s sex-life?

Some of you will wish you hadn’t asked, but whatever, read on.

Let’s all now prepare ourselves to be honest – I mean really honest.

If you are involved in a sexual relationship, is it all it could be?

Would you ever divulge your deepest fantasies to somebody else?

Would you consider spending a few days in a remote clinic, where you and your partner could indulge yourselves in activities that you have only ever dreamt about?

Are you even a little bit ‘curious’ in the sexual context?

If you are still reading, having hesitated just a few questions back – respect!

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Give and Take is the story of a young couple who have different attitudes to the sexual side of their relationship, but although both are sexually curious, they have difficulty communicating their fantasies and desires.

They find themselves at breaking point, and in order to save all that is good about their partnership, one of them feels compelled to take decisive action. The story sees them go to a private clinic where fantasy can become reality if the desire is strong enough, and honesty pays dividends both psychologically and sexually.

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I’ve had feedback from four of the writers who received my ‘rough’ fourth draft. Today, I decided to take a break from what I’m hoping is my penultimate editing session. I tend not to set up a bespoke Facebook page and play a social media fanfare with a new title, but I do like to give an introduction like this one.

In the last couple of days I’ve produced a cover which I’m content with, and for the next two weeks I will work to trim, polish, and tease the writing into shape.Give and Take - 12b - white author

My aim is to have Give and Take published by end August / early September 2015.

Who knows? If this one is moderately successful I’ll try writing another, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves, eh?

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In the next two weeks I may be happy with what I would call the finished product, but before I hit the publish button I would really appreciate final feedback.

No erotica experience necessary, although some sexual experience would be preferred. Only 18+ need apply.

Contact: orderlyman@yahoo.co.uk – subject: Give and Take

If you would be interested in reading the manuscript with a view to giving feedback before I publish, please get in touch. Confidentiality is promised, because I know that not everybody likes to be publicly associated with such literature.

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As always, thank you for reading … and now you can go back to your own fantasies …

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Easier on the eye?

Is Bradley to your taste?

Is Bradley to your taste?

If you’re a woman (or even a man) then perhaps you like the look of Bradley Cooperwhere did I put my mirror …

or for others, it’s relaxing to gaze at Liz Hurley … oh those lovely big eyes

Does Liz ease your eye strain?

Does Liz ease your eye strain?

Whatever your preference – it’s nice to look at something and not feel eye-strain. With that in mind and to make it easier for folk to read my short stories and novel chapters I’ve conducted yet another revamp.

Yes, brimming with the milk of human kindness, I spent my morning easing all my creative writing out from column-width to page-width. ‘What difference does it make?’ I hear you ask.

Why not have a look?

It’s particularly important for me right now because I’m working on the final draft of ‘Hawk – A Vigilante’, my thriller set in Glasgow. The novel is set for publication on Amazon in September / October so the rewrite is taking up most of my waking hours.

The first three freshly reworked chapters are now available to read on my blog. Whether you want to see my style, or if the idea of a modern vigilante in a British city appeals to you, please feel free to read and leave a comment. If I find feedback I’ll add the next two chapters. I will – honest!

I appreciate all feedback so whether or not you like the early chapters it will help me to produce a better story. The main job is done – the story is written, so my job now is to ensure the sex, violence, death and mayhem sounds as realistic as possible. You could help me shape the plot.

That’s all for now while I let you all think about it.

Sex and Poetry

Okay, I suppose rhythm comes to mind rather than rhyme, but I do have a vaild point with my introduction.  It must be admitted that sex is closely linked to Love and Romance … and where have I seen those two words most recently?

Oh yes, on the cover of my latest eBook.  Rhyme Scenes - Volume Two

‘Rhyme Scenes, Volume Two – Love and Romance’ is the title of my second book of poetry published on Smashwords.com/

As the title might suggest, the rhyming stories found within, concentrate on some of our more pleasant human emotions.  Knowing what a bitch life can be, because I’m just about old enough, I’ve kept things in perspective.  Among the 60 poems there are some bitter-sweet moments and more than a little tittilation.

I’ll give you a sample of the titles to let you see if the collection might appeal; ‘A Taste of Submission’, ‘Being Gay … and Happy’, ‘Friends or Lovers?’, ‘Coming Together’, ‘Mutual Satisfaction’, ‘Going All The Way’ and then of course there is the two part, ‘Sex Slaves’.

If you’d like to sample the contents please feel free to follow the link:https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/265467

Now, if you were being honest – which I know you all are, your appetite will be whetted, so go on along and take a look … you kow you want to … and nobody will know.

A Variety of Indulgence

Today’s drawing is of a lovely young lady I enjoyed reproducing rapidly in colour, but sadly never met.

Oh what to wear ...

Some folk might suggest that ‘Those In Peril’ by Wilbur Smith takes the sex scenes and violence a step too far, possibly to the point of gratuitous but for me it was graphic and portrayed man’s inhumanity to man (and woman) clearly.  Imagination was still required but there was no doubt about the intention to spell out the true horror of the particular situations.  As always the main characters are sexier, fitter, better at everything and multi-talented, but that’s what makes them what they are.

The tale itself is well told and is written in the present day where the pirates are operating from the east coast of Africa.  Their only interest is money and they have scant regard for human rights or life itself.  Those in the position of having a loved one or colleague kidnapped for ransom have no room for complacency as graphic video is sent to assure them of the torture befalling the hostage.

It portrays well that even if you own a global company and you flit from one continent to another, all the money in the world is not going to make the position any easier to deal with.  The tale contains a healthy, or should it be unhealthy? mix of violence, love, sex, religious fanatasiscm, relationships in general and fierce loyalty.  I enjoyed it mainly because I knew what to expect at the outset.

Once captured by the reading bug I went on to pamper myself with ‘And Thereby Hangs a Tale’ a collection of short stories by Jeffrey Archer.  For me, Jeffrey Archer is the master of the short story and even in that type of writing he manages to lace each tale with a considerable amount of fact and detail.  It’s in that fact and detail that I feel there is a similarity in the writing of Jeffrey Archer and Wilbur Smith.  Some may say it’s the research, but even after research the material must be put across in an interesting and imaginative way.  They both manage it for me.

In my own writing I’ve composed another handful of poems this past few days and put the finishing touches to my anecdote piece for the monthly magazine Scottish Memories.  If my tale, ‘Brothers In Arms’ is published I will be paid a small amount in cash terms, but the important aspect for me is the publishing of my material, whatever the genre or publication.  The anecdote is about me and two of my brothers on one of our trips to the cinema a couple of miles from where we lived, when I was about 12 years old.

My recent poems have covered a factual piece on prostitution, a passionate encounter, my writing and two about natural history.