inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #51 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Sat 23 Jun 01 02:13
    
when it comes to sex, I can't think of a story I've ever written that I held
back from publication because of the content.  I've held back lots of work
that Ithought was written poorly!

One time, I wrote a story about Christmastime, NOTHING to do with sex, but
it did have a lot of family memories.  I showed it to my dad, and it made
him really upset, he said he thought it would upset another one of my family
memebrs who didn't need the aggravation.  I disagreed with his speculation,
but I could see that it upset him A LOT, and so I changed it.  That caused
me a lot of grief at the time.

I've changed names, and fictionalized certain memories about lovers, when I
know that it woudl cause a lot of trouble to name names and claim it as
memoir.

But I really feel stumped about what your're asking.  Anyone who's read a
lot of me knows that I've been candid about bad sex, troubling sex, weird
sex, etc.  Like I said, there's plenty that I haven't brought to the
surface, but what I have, hasn't posed a self-censorship dilemma to me.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #52 of 91: recycled bits (satyr) Sat 23 Jun 01 09:18
    <hidden>
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #53 of 91: M. J. Rose (anewanais) Sat 23 Jun 01 14:39
    
You did answer it - that there was non sexual stuff you did hold back.
And now for something completely different... I know you teach erotic
writing... what is that like? 
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #54 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Sat 23 Jun 01 14:52
    
I like teaching writing classes a lot...you usually have very motivated
students, and they're eager to get down and go for it.  It very quickly
leaves the "waht if" stage, and we're very quickly writing and reading
together, experimenting, etc.  Every once in a while I get a "student" who
refuses to do anything, and then passes me a note that says," I'm looking
for a woman to dominate me," but that's the exception.  I get more impatient
with that type, though, because if they're going to spend $500, why not hire
a prof. dominatrix instead of being an asshole in a writing class?

and on another subject, ,satryr, I'm reading all your hidden posts, but I'm
not sure how to respond to them in this inkwell conference. Can non_Well
memebers see your hidden posts?  Am I to assume everyone's reading them?
Are you speaking tome directly?  I'm confused...
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #55 of 91: Bedroom eyes, dining room lips (drsmith) Sat 23 Jun 01 15:43
    

I'd never considered an erotic writing *class*.  Wow -- that kind of
puts things right out on the line, doesn't it, having your fellow
students hearing and/or reading what you've just written.
Sounds like it's not for the shy!
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #56 of 91: musing generally (satyr) Sat 23 Jun 01 17:39
    
> and on another subject, ,satryr, I'm reading all your hidden posts, but
> I'm not sure how to respond to them in this inkwell conference.

No need to.  They're tangential, at best.  I hid them to avoid
interrupting the flow of the conversation.

> Can non_Well memebers see your hidden posts?

Yes, the word "hidden" will be a link which opens them in a separate
window if they click on it.

> Are you speaking tome directly?  I'm confused...

No, more like using the issues you've raised as a starting point for
elaboration.

I was thinking it was about time to desist anyway, so I'll probably just
do that.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #57 of 91: M. J. Rose (anewanais) Sun 24 Jun 01 05:28
    
I laughed at the idea of you getting posted that note in class Susie.
At first I bristled and was about the think - but a mystery writing
teacher would never get a note like that. And then thought well they
might. Or worse get a note that said "will you help me figure out how
to murder my husband."

What do you think you are best at as a writer and what do you still
struggle with? (Erotic or otherwise.)
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #58 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Sun 24 Jun 01 13:08
    
My best is my worst.  I'm very fast, and prolific, but I'm always kicking
myself for not leaving more time, for not letting anotehr day go by to look
at my final draft with more objective eyes.  In my book, of course, i tell
people to NEVER send in a story they haven't slept on, showed to someone
else, etc., but I haven't always followed that rule, and it's been to my
detriment every time.

I'm good at hearing dialog in my head, and for getting into that zone where
all the intimate details come alive, and I can describe them as if I'm
watching teh movie.  I "disappear" inside the story very well.

The down side of that is I often don't know where I'm going, i can feel like
my characters are taking me on some wild ride and I don't know where or when
it's going to stop.  Iget so affected, that when it's time to put my pen
down and go make supper, or greet a friend, or whatever, I feel like I can't
"snap out of it.' This has been hard on my personal and social life!

As far as publishing, I veer from feeling like the most cynical author to
the most earnest and oversensitive. I tell myself, "now I've seen
everything, " but then some new bombshell blows my mind anew. I feel like
Mary Had  Little Lamb dealing with Dick Nixon half the time.

I guess the one trait that is ALWAYS good, is that writing is a pleasure for
me, and while it can be challenging, it feels like "home," it's never
something I feel like i want to escape from, or that I doubt the integrity
of.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #59 of 91: Paul Terry Walhus (terry) Sun 24 Jun 01 14:22
    
Do you work with independent web sites who may want to "affiliate" with you
and your stories, apart from the obvious Amazon and Barnes and Noble
affiliations?
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #60 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Sun 24 Jun 01 17:45
    
oh yes, I produced this ebook with a site called booklocker.com, I couldn't
have done it without them. And I have affiliate programs running with
several sex-posi sites. I don't have an affiliate with b&n, i haven't looked
into it, actually.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #61 of 91: Paul Terry Walhus (terry) Mon 25 Jun 01 11:01
    
How does that work?  What do you give affiliates and what do they give you?
How have these relationships worked out aside form the success at
booklocker.com (can you describe the mechanics of that successful
relationship?)
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #62 of 91: Bedroom eyes, dining room lips (drsmith) Mon 25 Jun 01 16:16
    

I've never known quite how to predict readers' reactions.
(I've never tried to get anything published, so this is in regards
to something shared with my wife, or something posted on the Well.)
I might write a story, thinking it's totally hot, and not get any
reaction at all.  Or I might write something, think, "Eh, that didn't
come out as well as I'd hoped,"  and then find to my surprise that
that piece gets a big, positive reaction.

So, my experience has been that I simply can't predict how someone
will react to something I write.  And my question, I guess is:
How do you deal with that?

I guess if you're just writing for kicks, to post online somewhere or
share with your lover, it isn't really an issue - just write it, and if
it's well-received, good; if not, life goes on.  But I'd think that
if you were writing, say, a novel or collection of stories, one would
need to have some sense of "How'm I doing?"

Is this just one more reason one needs an editor?
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #63 of 91: Mark Binder (realfun) Tue 26 Jun 01 09:33
    
I just finished Susie's book, and I must say, it's a fun read. 

I had it in my bag, and my 2 year old got a hold of it. I really
wanted a picture of him sitting on the steps, reading this book.

Susie's honesty about the art, craft and business of writing is
particularly refreshing. It's not often that a book about writing
admits that to "write" a number 1 bestseler, "You don't need to know
how to 'write' at all. Only one excellent idea is required... because
if you don't know how to write, then you will be hiring someone, as a
ghost writer, to do this part for you."

My only problem with the book is that it didn't give me a hard-on!
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #64 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Tue 26 Jun 01 15:06
    
sorry I'm so late to reply to you... my ISP, Mindspring, has been unable to
connect to the WEll, or Salon,or Google, or a host of other sites, for many
hours now.  Do any of you know why?  I finally tried dialing a San Diego
local access number, and that is working.  But none of thier Bay Area
numbers work.

Coincidentally, ( or not?) Ijust got an email from Mindspring saying they're
raising our monthly rates... great!  Their service has sucked since March.
Is it the blackouts, or them?

Okay, back to my book.

About affiliates:  Affiliates are different from retailers, although they
can be both, for an author who has a web site and is selling their own
books.

An affiliate is a web site who pays me a commission for driving sales
traffic to their site.  Blowfish, Amazon, Babeland, AUdible, and BlueDoor
are all affiliates I work with.  The ones who sell books are also carrying
my work.

A good affiate is someone who sends you regular reports and substantial
checks! Who doesnt'' lie to you, and who keeps their site up to date.

Now, Dr. Smith, as for reader reactions... I never think about that when I'm
writing, not until I get to the editing part.  You really have to BEGIN by
writing for your own kicks, or you simply don't have the motivation.
There's no way you can anticipate all the various reactions you might get.

Then, when you're preparing for publication, you can tweak it some, with
your editor, or some guinea pigs you try it out on.  But ultimately, you
have to take a risk. When your work resonates with an audience, you'll have
the pleasure of seeing how that works. But I dont think you canorchestrate
that ahead of time.

The writing process is worth it, whatever the reader reation may be.  You
have to get core satisfaction out of pleasing yourself,because honestly,
everythig else is anti climactic.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #65 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Tue 26 Jun 01 15:15
    
<realfun>, I want a copy of that photo too!  i hope he's learned some
valuable lessons.

You have however, touched on an important part of this book--it's not
erotic. I think it is the first book I've ever written that is hard-on-free.
It gets you hot to write, and that's when you get to turn yourself on!

I'm glad you liked my part about the various formulas for publishing
success. It sounds funny, but it's actually pure realism. I was SO SICk of
reading those writers guides that act like with a lot of creative
inspriation and hard work, you too, can end up on the NYT bestseller list.
People should know the truth about the mechanics of a bestseller ( which
certainly does include hard work, but which involves a lot more than good
ideas and elbow grease.)
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #66 of 91: musing generally (satyr) Wed 27 Jun 01 12:36
    <hidden>
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #67 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Wed 27 Jun 01 19:20
    
you know, if you want to ask me about my expereinces with Coyote, or
anything directly, it would make me feel like I'm not just talking to
myself.  If we were in a room together, speaking, would you do the same? I
find it bewildering, and then I wonder if you're trying to point out that
you're bored or something.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #68 of 91: musing generally (satyr) Thu 28 Jun 01 10:33
    
Ooooops!

Yes, I can see how you might feel that way.

I wasn't aware that you had experiences with COYOTE, but I probably should
have anticipated it.  Yes, it would be interesting to hear about.

And no more tangents; I promise!
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #69 of 91: Gail Williams (gail) Thu 28 Jun 01 10:54
    

I didn't know that either. I always think of Margo StJames or maybe 
Carol Leigh when I think of Coyote.  
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #70 of 91: Mark Binder (realfun) Thu 28 Jun 01 19:09
    

I'm curious, Susie, was the non-erectile, non-moist component of the book
part of the deal?

(I can just imagine some editorial board saying, "Whooah, we can't have it
be arousing... Then we'd be publishing a dirty book. Not a (wink) "dirty"
book...")
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #71 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Fri 29 Jun 01 07:21
    
It is surprising I'd have any personal stories about COYOTE, because of my
age.  In their heyday, I was still sitting around reading Germaine Greer and
wondering when I'd get my first period. I was too young to do anyting but
read about Margo St. James in the newspaper.

Fastforward to my 33rd year, when my daughter was one. I'd just had a nastly
break-up with my partners at On Our Backs, and I was walking down Valencia
St. to do my laundry at the Wash and Dry. I felt ahand on my shoulder,and it
was Spain, my friend/neighbor, and notorious Zap Comix-original artist. He
said, "Know anyone who wants to live in the south of France/"-- and I said,
"Yeah, right, I do---" before breaking down and telling him how glum and
uncertain I was about my future.

He took a flyer out of his pocket, and told me he was seriously posting it
around the neighborhood-- an old girlfriend and pal of his needed to have
someone housesit her place in rural France while she took care of her
parents in the US for a few months.

Her name was Maxine, and I took that number home and dialed it, oblivious to
the fact that it was 2 in the morning in Puechabon, the village where she
lived. We talked for about a half hour, and just clicked-- agreed we'd swap
for the fall.

I moved into a 11th Century stone fort in the heart of Languedoc ( close to
where all those McDonalds riots are happening now!) and Maxine got to live
in my house next to the Army St. Freeway entrance!

I know that a lot of Americans travel to France, but this particular area
has very few US visitors.  Most of the expatriates and tourists are English
and German.  I came with my baby, not having spoken a word of French outside
of a high school classroom. Spain told me that I coudl always call the
Crumbs ( Robert and ALine) if I couldn't handle it, but they were two hours
away.

Before we settled all the housekeeping details, I asked Maxine how she came
to settle in this little place-- and how she knew Spain.  She explained to
me that Spain had once been married to a woman who was one of the three
founders of COYOTE. The COyote and Zap people overlapped, lover-wise.  The
French treated the new American comix as fine art, and a lot of travelling
and mutual admiration and friendships resulted. Finally, the Coyote women
got fed up with the US and decided to "retire" to this area of Southern
France. They were the original Americans in this spot!

I sought them out, first because I was so desperate to speak English to
someone and I was so lonely, but also because I thought it was incredible
that they had left riding elephants down Van Ness Avenue to this place where
grapes and sinsimilla are the primary crops and preoccupations.  It's
incredibly beautiful but it is SOOOOOOOO remote and un-urban.  But little
did I know.... when I met Margo, she was in tradesman's clothes, you
couldn't even tell she was a woman, and she explained to me that she made
her living there doing "black" construction and renovation of people's homes
--working under the table.Her own home was so beautiful, it practically made
me cry. She had a whole room that as like a COYOTE museum, with all the
posters, photos, dresses, newspaper headlines, everything. She perpetually
had some American reproter or another drinking his way thru a respite at her
and her lover Gail's house.  By the time I got to know them, Gail and Margo
had broken up, and Gail had moved out, but they hadn't done all the material
separation of divorce. Instead, Margo was dating this guy that my Frnech
friends called the "Prince of Theives"-- he was introduced to me as the most
notorous car theif in Southern France. He looked exactly like the Fagin
charicature in Dickens!

The other Coyote retiree, who I'll call "Donna," also worked construction
and built her own house.  These women were so hardcore self-sufficient, they
could rival any milia-man or lesbian seperatist commune.  It's really hard
living there-- you work with your hands, they become almost instatly
arthritic from the Mistral winds and cold and lack of conveniences.  I've
never seen a "beauty parlor" there, for instance. But I loved to hear Donna
tell me about working in North Beach in the early 60s, and how the maitre d'
at Vanessis was so polite to the working girls-- the little arrangement they
had to net customers from all the finest Italian restaurants.

By the time I left Puechabon, I felt steeped in COYOTE history, as well as
teh details of the prostitution trade in San Francisco on the even of teh
cultural revolution.

Margo accepted a marriage proposal from one of her American journalist
beaus, and as you all know returned to SF.  The first time I ever saw her in
a dress was at her wedding reception, in North Beach. She cleaned up real
nice.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #72 of 91: musing generally (satyr) Fri 29 Jun 01 07:29
    
You asked how I happened to hear about COYOTE.  It was mentioned in a
radio program, don't remember which, in the context of AIDS prevention.
Apparently in some places where prostitution is legal (Germany was
specifically mentioned) sex workers are some of the most effective
proselytizers for safe sex...but it stuck in my head largely because of
the catchy name.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #73 of 91: Marguerite Chandler (vasudha) Fri 29 Jun 01 10:07
    <scribbled by vasudha Fri 29 Jun 01 10:36>
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #74 of 91: Susie Bright (sueb) Fri 29 Jun 01 10:08
    
Mark, I self published this book, so I didn't make any promises or deals
with anyone by myself.  When i said it was non-erotic, I meant in the sense
tht it isn't fiction, it isn't memoir, it's a guide to reading, writing, and
publishing erotica.  It gives example of great erotic writing-- which if
pursued, would give one great pleasure. It gives writing exercises,which if
performed, will undoubtably cause arousal.  But the book is not an erotic
yarn in itself.
  
inkwell.vue.114 : Susie Bright: How to Read/Write a Dirty Story
permalink #75 of 91: Gail Williams (gail) Fri 29 Jun 01 10:20
    
Could you say how to purchase or download again, please, Susie or anybody?
  

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