Eroticon is over for another year – and another terrific conference it was too! Actually, it was even better than last year since it was over two days. What was also a bonus was that my hotel was very close to The Shard (London’s newest attraction). I am not into most modern architecture (what can I say, I am an historian!) but this is just beautiful.
Anyhow I met lots of people at the conference that I had met last year including Janine Ashbless and Lily Harlem and many, many others, but also lots of new people – far too many to list but it was great meeting you all!
I found it very interesting to reflect where I was last year with where I am this year. Last year I had only been a published writer a few months and this year I seem to be meeting lots of new writers and suddenly I was the experienced one!! Another reflection was that there seemed to be a bigger age range amongst the women this year as last year I felt like one of the oldest and there were also a lot more men this year (and younger ones too!!)
I took tons of notes but here is a summary:
The opening keynote was given by the Family Planning Association and Brook, a group for under 25s offering advice and support in sexual practices, was unexpected but interesting, particularly when they gave a historical look at contraceptives, eg, penis protectors used in Egyptians, fruit acids used by women as a douche and so on.
Then into a session on busting myths around the submissive woman given by someone I met last year. In essence her point was there is no perfect submissive, we are all very different with different wants and needs. There may be the doormat type submissive but there is also the powerful woman who chooses to be submissive because she wants someone else to be in control – submission is given not taken, it is about communication between you and your Dom. The message was not to broadly brush our stories, if writing about a Dominant/submissive relationship, as ‘all submissives are like xxxx’ because they are not.
A session on editing came next. She was mostly concentrating on editing services for those who are self published which at this stage, I have no intention of doing but she made some good points like use euphemisms which are suitable for your characters, have a reason for your props and don’t include them indiscriminately, are your sex scenes physically possible and so on. Interestingly someone came up to me later to see who I was because she thought my comments I made in that session were good!!
Next was a creative writing session looking at making your stories unusual, making you work outside your comfort zones, for instance, if you are writing a BDSM story does it have to be within a BDSM club as that just underscores conservative morality that BDSM can only take place in certain places (actually I’ve written my stories in a club and outside).
Then a session given by a UK publisher about how to pitch to publishers and what sort of stories they are looking for. It was amusing in some ways when she said the market has been flooded in the last year by BDSM stories. The problem is it has been overflooded! She reckons stories where the hero is flawed are IN at the moment!
Then the closing session warning bloggers that accepting payment for reviewing sex toys is actually against google terms and conditions and you could run the risk of getting your blog/website down ranked.
I will tell you about day two next week but it includes sessions on polyamory, BDSM tools of the trade, and sex and the media.