Friday, August 29, 2008

Express Yourself

Last night's In The Flesh: LA Erotic Reading series was just brilliant. Amazing writers all, such comedic as wells as thought provoking pieces. The theme was Madonna and after much going back and forth, I have decided to post my original piece from last night here. I have cut some X rated language but other than those minor edits the piece remains the same. (the Madonna songs are in bold)

Express Yourself

By Margaret Marr

The Madonna of my youth is not the Madonna of my maturity. But regardless of either, she is the Madonna of my generation. She is me and I am her. The manifestation of my blossoming teenage sexuality. The definition of a generation for which the words dirty girl and bad girl held a much different meaning than for our mothers. Born post-pill and sexually aware pre-aids, I had no fear. Emboldened by the words BOY TOY and the vision of a writhing Madonna rolling across the floor of the stage on the MTV awards wearing a lace wedding dress and telling me and the world she was like a virgin, but not a virgin and felt no shame because of it, I and my set had no fear of being labeled bad girls. No, in fact my sexuality was mine and mine alone. I could disperse my favors as I saw fit without fear of retribution, or recrimination or (gasp as my mother’s generation) without getting a bad reputation. This was my post-feminist revolution, to embrace all that my ERA bra-burning older sisters said oppressed me and was the domain of my male oppressors, to instead flip the very meaning of the words BOY TOY, in that the Toy for me, was the Boy. And should I choose to be his Toy, the power came from my choice, Me giving him my sexual gift, my essence my sweat sweet nectar.

Sex is not oppression, but power. Men, ah men, how every woman loves the feel of a hard man between her legs and yet, women are driven by so much more than our sexual urges. Making men so malleable, so easily lead. A tight pair of tits sitting high on a chest, with a willowy waist and lusciously round hips, just the vision of this can cause middle aged men, fearing their loss of virility to buy ferarri’s, porsches and toss away years of marriage and family for the four minutes that they might feel themselves slide into the tight wetness of a sweet young thing.

Lusciously full of sexual power, and conquest I was burning up for their love. But as much as the youthful me saw relished the power of this, my sexuality that could be wielded as one might swing a samurai blade, my aging me now mourns her loss. So the saying goes; those who live by the sword die by the sword. And now post child-birth, and well into my thirties, ah-hmm the end of my thirties as I see the young thing walk by swinging her hips, her breasts wantonly sitting high on her chest, braless and barely covered by a tight white tank top, I long for that moment. The moment of power, the moment of saturating myself with the strength of my sexuality the power of my attraction the essence of my desire.

And while my Madonna, the Madonna of my generation manages to maintain some of her sexuality with a hard body, and the refusal to eat after six pm and never letting a piece of bread pass her lips. I look at her and gone is the warm voluptuous sexy creature of my youth. Gone is the girl in the black lace and beads bouncing across a white set singing holiday she is replaced by a overly lean hard looking woman. One who I am unsure I can follow into that long goodnight.

I search for my sexuality now that I am a mother, a wife, and almost (gasp) middle aged. So easy to feel sexually attractive when you are the very essence of mother-nature’s desire for reproduction, when the gift of your flower is to fulfill the role of reproduction. But what then when the role is fulfilled. What then as I age and look beyond the essence of physical beauty, virility and search even deeper to find what is sexy about me. My answer seems locked beyond my grasp.

My answer I hope waits for me just on the other side of my children entering school and perhaps getting a piece of my husband again for myself. But as I search, I often think of the moments, when my beauty, my sexuality, my freedom was all present for his and my pleasure. The feelings of his lips on my mouth, his hands sliding over my breasts, and down to my waist. His lips on my neck causing me to run my fingers through his hair grasping for him and gasping for air, as his hands slid up my thigh, pausing and making tight little circles. His fingers slipping under my lace silk panties and pausing, a pause, that causes me to gasp with desire as heat courses through my body. He presses closer, he pushes against me, and in this moment, this moment of arousal, I feel the surge of desire, of power, of sexuality and in this moment I feel beautiful and see the ray of light that is my future sexuality and know that I am still crazy for you.

xo mm

Thursday, August 28, 2008

In The Flesh LA: An Erotic Reading Series

For all those interested and available. Tonight I will be reading at In The Flesh an erotic reading series. Tonight the theme, in celebration of her 50th, is Madonna. As you probably guessed, this event is adult only. The event begins at 7:30 pm and is at the Hustler Hollywood on Sunset. The event is free but a suggested $10 door fee will be donated to the Rape and Incest National Network.
Looking forward to seeing you.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Hard Life

This past week my husband celebrated a birthday...I won't tell you which one (birthday that is, not husband) but I will tell you what we did. We went camping. Not the cushy let's stay in a cabin with running water camping or even the get an rv and sleep in a bed camping. No. We went tent camping. And the was hard.

Now I never got to camp as a child, my mother was the 'if there isn't air conditioning in the hotel that is roughing it' kind of mom. So when my husband and I were dating, camping and hiking and sitting by the fire seemed exotic and wildly exciting.

I was 26.

I am no longer 26 and the ground is hard. (I've mentioned that right?) So on day one after child number one threw up on me, and child number 2 whined incessantly and the sticky marshmallows and the bugs and the vaulted running water. I climbed into our tent ready for some sleep. I lay down, on the ground, and for the first time worried that I might not ever get up. Not because of comfort or exhaustion but because my joints ached and I wasn't sure I had the ability to lift my body from the ground. But of course, being the Mom and this camping trip being my husband's birthday wish I said nothing. I did not sigh as I awakened every two hours my arms numb, hips bruised and I thought ribs cracked. No complaint issued forth from my lips as I shifted and turned attempting to keep my shoulder blade from dislocating. I awoke the next morning and was thankfully able to stand and walk. I exited our tent to the sight of my husband hunched over and hobbling.
"That ground is hard," he said.
"Mmhm," I replied.
I decided late the night before as the coyotes yipped and howled not far from our campsite that I would not be the reason for the Great Outdoorsman to end his birthday adventure early. No I would be stoic, I would be pleasant, I would be achy but I would live.
"I don't remember sleeping on the ground hurting like that," my husband said finally standing upright.
"Nope," I said.
"Maybe..."he looked off into the distance. "Maybe we could go home this evening, you know when the girls are ready to go to sleep."
"And then we can sleep in our own bed?" I asked attempting to keep my joyful tone hidden.
"If that's what you want," my husband asked.
"Sure," I said and realized that I needed to take this hit for the team. My Great Outdoorsman could barely admit his new age, but to admit his body ached and he was too soft to sleep in his tent outdoors was too much. So I did what he needed, my birthday gift to him, I told him I wanted to go home.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Smart One by Ellen Meister

Ellen Meister is one of my cyber-friends and a GCCer too. I read her first book Secret Confessions of The Applewood PTA and loved it, so I'm certain her second book The Smart One will be just as good or better. Ellen was kind enough to answer some question from me about her writing life and her new book.

Tell us about your latest book.

THE SMART ONE is a sister story with a bright voice, a dark crime and more humor than I expected. (Sometimes my characters surprise me!)

The three sisters in this book mix like oil, water and hundred-proof gin . . . a combination that threatens to combust over family tensions, suspected infidelities, a devastating accident, a stunning confession, and the sudden reappearance of their handsome, now all-grown-up former neighbor, Kenny Waxman, who's back in town making his mark as a TV comedy writer.

It seems like the sisters will never understand where their differences begin and their own destructive tendencies end. Then it happens: they discover a decades-old body stuffed inside an industrial drum and begin a bold, heartbreaking, and sometimes hilarious journey that will either bring them together . . . or tear them apart for good.

What pulled you into this story, and as a writer made you think 'I have to write this'?

When I got the idea to explore the ways in which we continue to define--and limit--ourselves by our childhood labels, I knew I had the beginnings of a novel I would want to read. And when I sat down and wrote an experimental chapter and my protagonist's voice emerged, I knew I had the beginning of a novel I wanted to write!

Tell us about your writing process. Do you outline or are you more organic?

It's a combination for me. I start out thinking about the idea for a long time, and then I make notes. In the beginning they're very stream-of-consciousness--just random thoughts about my characters and story. Then a plot begins to emerge, and I start a rough outline. Before too long, though, I have to try my hand at a couple of chapters to get an idea of the voice and pacing, so I can figure out just how much story I'll need to fill a book. After that I go back and finish the outline ... which winds up being a very fluid document that I change as I go along.

What is a typical writing day like for you?

I have three kids, so there's no such thing as a typical day. But I usually get up at 5 am and make myself some strong coffee. Once the caffeine kicks in, I get to work until the children awake. Then, after they leave for school, I'm back to my desk. I have to admit that I'd get a lot more done if I weren't an internet junkie!

For you, what is the most difficult part of being an author?

The writing itself is pretty damned hard ... especially when I have an edit that requires unraveling a lot of my plot. That always makes me want to smash my head against the keyboard. But I have to admit that the most difficult part of the process is all the waiting and anticipation, especially when it involves hearing from an agent or an editor about my precious newborn work.

What do you love about being an author?

Ah, my favorite question ... and so easy to answer! My favorite part is hearing from readers who I've touched in some way. That makes the whole thing worthwhile.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

From Pantser to Outliner in 400 pages

So yes, it's August and yes I've been on a blog sabbatical. But I am pleased to report, I have in fact finished a manuscript. A lovely little rewrite that just about took everything out of me. Not a typical let's polish this up and make it pretty rewrite...oh no no no that would be much too easy. No this rewrite changed the characters, the plot, really it turned a mess of a book into a pretty good manuscript (fingers crossed). But in finishing this manuscript and also in working on my latest YA with a co-writer I've noticed a theme. I do better with an outline. And I loath outlines...hate them. Now I'm guessing that somewhere in my twisted psyche outlines are much like exercising or cleaning the bathroom...I know I need to do it, but I just don't want to. I rail against it every time...and yet once I accomplish the exercise or the bathroom cleaning...I am so much happier. And thus, I have made the transition or am working on making the transition from a 'pantser' to a grudging, grumbling, 'outliner.' Because I know it saves me time. It makes my writing better. It gives me a bit of a road map on where I'm going. And yes, I allow my outline to change, and yes, I find my characters doing things and saying things that make my outline obsolete, but that is okay. I don't necessarily have to go where the outline tells me, but there is something about that guide (especially in the ultra foggy middle of the manuscript) that keeps me moving along without having to write an additional 400 pages (yep 400 total in the last two manuscripts) that get highlighted and deleted.
xo Maggie