Sunday, May 27, 2018

Sunday Story - Cock Tales

There's been a huge kerfuffle in the writing world which has quite significant implications if it's left unchecked. An author has decided to trademark a word. This sounds like nothing - but if it's successful, then it sets some ridiculous precedent where words may be copyrighted/trademarked and 'taken' from our vocabulary.

Maybe I've oversimplified the incident, but that's my understanding after a couple of weeks of trying to work out what the heck it all means!

In all the furor, some other authors have put together an ebook, and sales from this will be funded into an account to fight this legal battle.

There's something wonderful about people coming together to fight something they find is wrong.

It doesn't just happen in the writing world. Communities may band together to help out less-privileged people. Sports teams may work together to help someone who's struggling. People may work together to fight a wrong done by a big company or a richer person. These things are so heartening, especially when you're reeling about how can people be so stupid/cruel/mean/insensitive.

So, do you have your copy of Cock Tales?

Are you supporting another cause to help someone?

Do you find these 'group collective efforts' heartening?

Friday, May 18, 2018

Postcard & praise

In my euphoria of last week, I showed off the photo of my ARRA trophy at Book Club.

I know! My Book Club of learned literary readers!

But... after me being so shy about telling them of my writing, they were brilliant about the trophy. I felt like a million bucks!

Then today, one of the lovely ladies in my group sent me this postcard - Oscar Wilde - with the message on the back being, "Congratulations! And may this be the first of many!"

I've been completely blown away by people's support. It's been incredibly reaffirming.

I've struggled so much with the criticism that's often aimed at romance and erotic writing but I feel like I've finally turned a corner. I'm finding my feet, and my confidence, in this crazy world. And good's only taken me how many years?

The impact of this has been incredible. Something I had no true comprehension of.

Thank you so very much ARRA, and my readers.

(I'll stop banging on about it now!)

PS I had another gorgeous card from a different Book Group. How I love readers xoxox

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Wildlife Wednesday - cute spider

I have this gorgeous tree in my front yard which I think is a spruce. I've been taking photos of different parts of it lately because it hides some gems - droplets of water, wasp nests, shining resin, amazing cones, and then I spied this tiny spider staring up at me from the end of a branch.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Phallic Friday - polyamory

There was a really interesting article on this week about polyamory - you can read it here.

And if you're wondering how polyamory is different to polygamy, there's a great article here.

Simply, polyamory is about having many loving relationships, where all people understand that others are involved in your life. These relationships may not necessarily be sexual.

Polygamy is having more than one wife or husband at the same time.

The polyamory article was interesting because it focussed on the conversations and the discussions partners may have. Sure, sex was mentioned - it's a click bait article so it has to, right - but I thought this article didn't overly hammer that angle for a change :)

Polyamory (I'm going to call it poly) appeals to me, or makes sense to me. I don't believe that one person can give another everything they need, which I feel is the fable that's spun around monogamy.

When I lived in a small town, I had my regular husband (Mr E) and a friend from work who I laughingly called my Cultural Husband. Mr E doesn't do art shows or musical theatre. He'll go under sufferance but I know he's hating every moment and that makes me uncomfortable. So it was best if he stayed home and was happy. So when I wanted to go, I'd invite my Cultural Husband (who lived across a couple of paddocks) with Mr E's full approval and relief. I'd never have termed us poly, but I guess, by definition, it sort of was that kind of a relationship. Everyone knew about everyone else, everything was upfront and discussed, both men got along well (when not at events they didn't like!).

I enjoy having D&M discussions with people about shared interests. I don't have a problem talking with men or women. Over my life, there have been quite a lot of people who've taken issue to me spending time with their partner/friend/associate. It's always disappointed me when people assume you can't have discussions/friendships without sex being involved. I think that's why I really enjoyed this article.

How do you feel about polyamory?

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

ARRA Award Thoughts

On this blog, I've tried to document my writing journey without too much censorship. Today's post is rather macabre, and also somewhat personal, so please be gentle with me.

I was stunned to see Team Player announced as ARRA's 2017 Favourite Erotic Romance. It was unexpected in the company I was keeping.

Team Player isn't a conventional story. It's written in first person, present tense, which so many readers hate. It's a MMF threesome without a submissive in the relationship. I was deliberately striving to create a threesome where each person had equal standing, if not at the beginning then by the ending, yet I know that's not conventional. It features sportsmen. It's quite explicit and raw in the descriptions of the sex, and I know some people had trouble reading it - the MM sex in particular. It hardly seemed the type of story that would win. However, I'm ecstatic that it did!

After the initial thrill at seeing my name, a sense of dread crept in, which has taken a few days to unravel.

In 2003, I won an award for best paper at a work conference. It was the pinnacle of my career. Such a huge accolade. I was completely blown away as I didn't know they presented best paper awards so had not even dreamed of it. It was before the time of mobile phones, and so by the time the event was over it was after 10 pm, too late to ring anyone and tell them.

I was working for a farmer group and our trial (which I had not been involved with during the planning, I came to it later) was quite unconventional. It excited me because of that. It was asking tough questions and was a huge undertaking. I loved the challenge of that. To win an award, to have people notice this work was a huge achievement. I thought we (our farmer-led research group) were destined for great things. (There are some similarities here, right?)

My Mum died that night, a few hours later. I woke in the morning to a phone call from Dad. My award was overshadowed by loss.

All of last Sunday, I kept expecting something terrible to happen. I'd won an award, surely a smashing defeat would come next, obliterating any excitement and joy. I waited... and waited.

It didn't come.

What came instead was this whopping realisation that I equated success with grief - a win with defeat

Damn it.

I knew I feared success more than failure...but I had no conscious understanding of why I feared success. Now I know.

Next comes the breaking down of those fears.

I'll have to dig out my 2003 trophy (that's buried in a filing cabinet) and place it with this beauty. I'll have to remain mindful of the pride and joy associated with each achievement, separate to sad events that surround each award.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

ARRA Award

Thank you ARRA, Booktopia and readers. Tomorrow I might find words (some added now).

I wasn't able to attend the ARRA Awards Night because the other me had agreed to speak at the Sydney Writers Festival Live And Local event at Wollongong. My local ARRA member had organised this for me and so I asked her to apologise on my behalf when we realised the clash.

And then my book was a finalist. The lovely Diane tried to change my speaking time, but it meant changing the whole program. I decided to stay with my commitment and miss the Awards Dinner. Then Diane asked me for a speech - in case I won. I laughed but wrote words because she was being good enough to humor me - and represent me.

Today I had to go and find what I'd asked her to say because I had no memory of what I'd written. So while my thoughts are still so jumbled, here are those words.

Cath would like to thank: 

ARRA for fabulous events like the Awards and for their huge support of authors.

Booktopia for sponsoring this award.

Kate Cuthbert for her incredible self, her support and encouragement.

The Escape Publishing/Harlequin/HarperCollins team.

My writing friends and family who are only ever an email away and always get me out of trouble!

My family, especially my hubby, who manages to cope with not only my writing but this Cate, who none of them are very comfortable knowing!

Diane who’s representing me tonight after organising for me to give a talk today at a South Coast Writing Centre event. She’s great at prodding me when I’d rather stay in my cave!

Thank you to everyone who read and/or voted for Team Player, or JA Low’s Sapphire, or Vi Keeland’s Egomaniac, or Penelope Ward’s Mack Daddy. Authors love our readers. 

Thank you!