The eighth in my series on writers’ experiences of writing gay, shifter or BDSM stories is from Leandra Vane talking about her experiences of writing gay BDSM.
My muse was feeling generous one day and she dropped a character right into my lap. Nate Fuller: part time bartender, part time novelist – long hair, torn jeans, ink lines from tattoos running down his forearms.
I was in love.
But I soon found out Nate was also kinky as fuck – of course my muse would throw that in. Nate is a submissive, likes impact play and bondage, and he needed me to invent someone to tie him up… fast.
My mind began to conjure up another character – brown eyes, a well-fitted suit, a shy but certain smile. James is a librarian with a secret – and that secret includes his affinity for wanting to tie people up.
I was surprised and a little aggravated at my muse. A M/M pairing? In all my short stories and longer length erotic romance works up until this point, I had never written a strictly M/M pairing. I had done F/F, M/F and a few M/F/M or F/F/M stories. As a reader, I really enjoy reading M/M pairings so I’ve always wanted to write one. But I always worried about being able to write the minds, bodies, and sexualities of the two male characters in the pairing. I was used to having a female POV to fall back on, filling in observations from my own femme life.
I hesitated to the point I almost didn’t begin the story. But my muse simply would not let that be. I started drabbling and what I thought would be a short story grew into a novel length BDSM romance entitled “Booked”.
As the story and characters developed, I found there were a lot of topics I wanted to explore as a writer that kept the integrity and authenticity of my characters intact. One particular topic was invisible disability.
I am a disabled writer and including the experience of disability in my stories is important to me.
I was born with a birth defect that caused nerve damage. About ten years ago, I met a man who had the same kind of nerve damage as me. Of course, we talked about sex. I found it interesting that we both experienced our sexualities in similar ways. For example, we both lack sensation in erogenous zones, so other places on our bodies we can feel have become sensitive to erotic touch.
We both also have orgasms and the way he described feeling his orgasm is very similar to what I feel in my body during orgasm.
I honestly don’t know if other people experience orgasm and sexuality the way we do. I haven’t had the opportunity to talk with other people with our disability about sex. But I thought it was really interesting that two people who grew up in two different countries with different sexual desires shared such a similar experience when it came to The Big O. I kept this in mind when I started writing my first M/M story.
In “Booked,” Nate has a similar type of nerve damage as I do. Though he can move his body, some fine motor skills are impaired and he can’t feel over half of his body. The way he has dealt with his body and his sexuality in the past plays into the theme of secrecy in the book. Since I have both visible and invisible aspects to my disability, having a character that could hide his disability gave me a lot to work with regarding secrecy, trust, and communication.
I have always wanted to capture in erotic fiction what sex and kink feels like in a body with nerve damage. This book and these characters have helped me do that.
Because, like Nate, I am kinky as fuck. Playing with pain and sensation in BDSM has been central to enjoying my sexuality, unlocking pleasure in my body, and helping me discover things about my body I would not learn in other ways.
I hope that my story brings representation to a lot of identities – fetishists, disability in kink, and bisexuality, among other things. I drew on my experiences as a sexually fluid bisexual, a fetishist, and a person with nerve damage to bring my characters to life. But I let them do the rest.
Nate and James took hold of their own story, and in many ways I was just along for the ride. But I’m thrilled with where it has brought me. I hope readers feel the same way and find they connect to the characters in a way that is unique and meaningful.
“Booked” is due for release late May 2017. Below is the book’s summary:
Nate Fuller looks like a typical artist: Part-time novelist, part-time bartender, and dedicated volunteer at the public library. But beneath the surface, Nate keeps many secrets. Nerve damage has left him without feeling in most of his body. He has a thing for being tied up. And the interlibrary loan librarian Charlotte is his BDSM Domme.
Between his body and his kinks, Nate has always had a difficult time with romance. But when he meets the new assistant library director James Albright, things in that department quickly heat up. Unfortunately, James has never been exposed to BDSM beyond the erotica section and Nate has always been more comfortable lying about his body and his sexuality. But James has a secret of his own and clues begin to appear behind the detective crime novels he reads every night.
Armed with handcuffs and a thrill for the chase, Nate sets out to uncover their dream power dynamic – and true love.
My Social Media:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/leandra_vane (@Leandra_Vane)
Many thanks for taking part in this series, Leandra. If you wanted to read the others in the series:
Jennifer Denys (intro post) click here
Samantha Winston click here
Jules Dixon click here
Amara Lebel click here
Evelise Archer click here
Jennifer Denys click here
Peyton Clarke click here
This series is to inspire people to write for my Balls & Chains series – a gay shifter series set in a BDSM club. If you are interested full details can found on Luminosity’s website. The first book in the series ‘To Claim a Mate’ came out on 12 May.