Saturday, 31 December 2011

Viva the Fifties

It feels like I haven't had a moment to myself for weeks now, what with travelling, visiting family and spending nights sharing unbearable budget hotel rooms with snoring kids. No surfing, no blogging and no time to disappear into the fantasyland that is spanko fiction project no. 2 (poor Beryl must feel very neglected).
I'd even forgotten that my little blog poll on the subject of historical period as fantasy setting has come to an end. It was a close run thing with 1950s/60s beating the Victorian period by just one vote, but the sample of just 37 votes isn't what you'd call statisically significant...
If you did vote, many thanks. I think I may have made a mistake though, as with hindsight I think 1940s and 1950s would have gone together much better. Lumping in the 1950s and 1960s doesn't really work. The uptight, guilt-ridden 1950s don't sit well with all that 1960s free love stuff, do they?
Anyway, I need to go and get ready to see in 2012. Have a great night wherever you are and I hope you'll enjoy exploring the theme of the strict, no-nonsense 1950s with me during the coming year.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Going undercover

I love my snooze button. The alarm clock wakes me up and I reach out a hand to hit the snooze button.
That gives me exactly seven minutes to enjoy being cosy under the duvet and explore some a fantasy or two. If Significant Other isn't out working I sometimes share the thoughts and things get interesting.
But usually it's a solitary pleasure. Seven minutes of feeling slightly horny and then the day has to begin. Or I hit snooze again and go for a bonus seven.
And those seven minutes are going to be my lot until sometime around the New Year. The undercover blogger has to go into deep background mode with a houseful of kids and relatives to deal with, so no new posts for a while sadly.
I will miss it. Since I started blogging in November it has become part of my daily routine and it will be weird to be without it.

In the meantime dear reader, please take some time to go back over old posts. And in the spirit of Christmas leave a comment or two. Maybe even vote in the poll over there on the right. See you soon.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Art class

What is this all about? I came across it this morning at the first-class Old Erotic Art and find it fascinating - in a disturbing way. Both the man and woman are grotesque, but I find the way her elegant outfit bares breasts and bottom really rather arousing.
And what's the thing with the mirror? And why are they in what looks to be the open countryside? Not much chance to do any writing at the moment with Christmas eating all my time, but I'm going to spend some time trying to construct a narrative around this picture. In the meantime, if anybody can tell me who painted it and when I'd be grateful.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Costume Christmas

The great thing about Christmas is that it usually serves up at last one really good costume drama. The rest of the world seems to love 'Downton Abbey' at the moment, but I just can't get into it. It all seems a bit trite to me.
But I really like the look of the BBC's new 'Great Expectations'. In the trailers Gillian Anderson makes such a wonderfully creepy Miss Haverhsam, but also a surprisingly sexy one. She must be at least 20 years younger than Dickens' own character, but hey - she looks marvellous.
I have expectations for 'Great Expectations', but it will have to be exceptional if it manages to be better than my favourite TV costume romp of 2011, 'The Crimson Petal and the White'. An adaptation of Michel Faber's novel, it was absolutely spell-binding. If you haven't seen it look it out on DVD.
Gillian Anderson was fab in that, but the show was totally stolen by the Romola Garai, who played the central character, Sugar. Excellent.
The sad thing though is that in my house costume drama is treated with no respect at all, so the chances are I'll have to record GE and watch it alone. Otherwise I'd have to put up with smart remarks and giggling, which rather spoil the experience.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Christmas shopping and spanko radar

I think Underling hit on something recently commenting on my ramblings on the subject of the poet John Betjeman. You can read it here somewhere, but the jist was that I like to think I can detect a spanko spirit in the work of jolly old Sir J.
But am I fooling myself? Underling said: "I suspect our spanko radar is probably a little overdeveloped, and the sentiments we detect are often our own." Am I a bit too ready spotting spanko references and sentiments where all is innocent? Possibly. 
But possibly not. I've been out shopping today and found myself in the cookware section of a department store. While I was busy looking for the perfect potato pan (to par boil tyhose essential Christmas Day roast spuds) I couldn't help notice the attractive thirtysomething guy who seemed to be spending way too long selecting just the right wooden spoon from the wide selection of spoons, spatulas and other spanking implements on display...

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Locating corner time

Corner time. Is there a geography to it? I'm most familiar with it as part of North American writing about CP. But I can't remember having heard about corner time being part of the British tradition, although I may have read it and then forgotten that I have.
As writer, I was just about to send Bee to the corner after her punishment, but then I thought again. Would a 1940s English spankee be put into a corner?
So, to Google. Lots to find, including a photo blog that's nothing but cornertime images. Lots to like their, and I found myself browsing for ages. It's interest to see just how little corner time actually takes place in corners.
The Disciplined Feminist thinks it is a must-have in a discipline situation. It is, she says, a time when she can be fully owned by her spanker and more powerful than other impositions. "For me, none of them have the meditative, calming, centering effect that corner time does," she says.
Then it occured to me that the place to look was DJ Black's The Voice in the Corner. Of course. There I came upon a fantastic story that really catches the mood of corner time, 'Angela’s Story: an anatomy of corner time'.
In it Angela says that the thing about corner time is that you never know how long it is going to last. "You have no idea how long is left to go and whether or not you will be returned to the corner once your spanking is over."
But I haven't come away with any sense of whether a bit of corner time is right for Bee, or whether she should be sent straight to bed instead. Anyone help me on this?

Curing writer's block

I'd earmarked a couple of hours for fiction writing this morning and the time is now up. What have I produced? Maybe 300 words. An extremely poor effort.
What have I been doing? Looking out of the window, putting wood on the fire, messing around with post and lots of online "research". OK, that research has mostly involved delving around in the marvellous Old Erotic Art and feeling just a little "shaken up" as a result. 
Lots of lovely pictures to look at, but I've ended up with very little work done. Writer's block? No way, just naughty slothfulness that should be beaten out of me...

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Your democratic duty

Assume a position
Not much time left now to cast your vote in my time machine poll. So hurry, hurry and do your bit to further democracy.
I've done years of blog lurking myself, so I know how it works. Many pass by, few comment. But a quick poll vote can make a weary blogger's day, honestly.
What I'm after is an idea of where you go when you're enjoying a little spanko fantasy. Come clean, where does your mucky little mind wander off to? 
At the moment it looks like a majority of you share my liking for the tight-laced corsets and uptight morals of the Victorian Age. All those meek maids, demure ladies, strict masters and fearsome governesses are just too hard to resist. Not to mention big pants put together in just the right way for ease of access.
But the 1950s could still make a late surge and finish in front. To most of us now the 1950s are beyond personal memory, but our parents remember the decade and it's one that's remembered through a nostalgic glow.
The fantasy 1950s are a simpler, better-behaved time when the fashions were elegant and the lingerie was well-constructed. And, it seems, bottom-spanking was very much part of day-to-day life.

Montorgueil's women

There's something about the women in F/M art. They have presence, poise, charisma or whatever it is. They often have a really good wardrobe too, and nice shoes.
Here's an example - the work of artist Bernard Montorgueil. Did he only do femdom subjects? 
I would love to see his take on FF situations.
His women are so elegant and cool, I love them. 
I've been trying to find out some more about him, but there doesn't seem to be much to go on. This page at Mistress Fantasy seems to be the jist of it. You can see more here, here and here too.
A lot of  what he drew is way beyond my domestic discipline comfort zone. Too many nasty whips and bed of nails for me, not enough of the cosy stuff like hairbrushes and OTK.
But I love the settings, the clothes and the rest of his more domestic stuff. Whoever or wherever, Montorgueil certainly has the knack of creating a kinky fantasyland that I find seductively believable.

PS, since I posted this a kind follower has just emailed me the address of a photoblog called Strict Women, so I could admire the shoes. It's the place to see Montorgueil's women made flesh. And there are some really to-die-for heels there to enjoy too.

Saturday, 17 December 2011

A Christmas disappointment

What's really on her mind...?
Bum! Guess who gets left off Santa's Christmas list again this year? I might be getting gifts (see left for paste-on smile), but I won't get what I want.
...something like this, perhaps.
All the spanko stuff in this house happens during the day when the kids are out. Finding 'windows of opportunity' can be tricky. But it was looking quite promising. Significant Other's last shift before the holidays is today and the schools are still in business until next Thursday - four more play days before Xmas.
So, there's been a bit of verbal banter about naughtiness, niceness and what has to happen to the ever-naughty. Then oldest child arrived home last night to say that her course tutor had decided that yesterday should be their de facto last day! I know that Christmas is about family, but really...

Friday, 16 December 2011

Does my bum look big...

...ON this? Yes, the strategic use of pillows, cushions or whatever is a great way of getting the target area just right for cane, belt or tawse. But it doesn't necessarily do a big-boned girl any favours. Anyone's behind is going to look a bit broad in this context. This scan from the 1980s mag 'Blushes' popped up at The Pink Papers and is a great example of the Blushes/Janus way of doing things. Must have been edgy stuff in its day, but the photo sets look rather lifeless now to my eye.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

More photo memory

I've touched on this problem before. When you're writing over a period of time a character's looks and personality can be a bit fluid, so it helps to try to pin them down - tn makes for consistency from chapter to chapter.
A (vanilla) friend offered advice. He sticks pictures of people and places on a board in his office after the style of those walls you see in detective dramas. It's appropriate, as he's writing detective fiction.
Not so appropriate for me, of course. What would the pictures be - bottoms, underwear, inspiring implements of correction. My mother's pretty easy-going, but would not, I think, be amused.
Instead I've got a file on my laptop that is a sort of virtual picture wall. For 'A Month in the Country' the picture file got quite full, with images from tumblr and elsewhere that helped me visualise each of the main characters.
Flick, or Gemma
For example, my feisty heroine Flick ended up being represented in the photo file by the actress Gemma Arterton. In early chapters Flick had been a blonde, but as time went on I decided to make her the perfect English rose brunette - which had to be Gemma A.
Now I'm having trouble visualising my new heroine Beryl, or Bee, my 1940s Land Army girl. She's a sporty type who plays tennis and hockey, can handle hard farmwork and is also gorgeous enough to turn heads.
Perhaps she should be a redhead. Handprints work so well on very pale skin, don't they? So, whose picture should I put into the photo wall file? All, any, suggestions would be gratefully recieved.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Statistics and spanking

If you're after a shining example of public service look no further than My Bottom Smarts and Bonnie's 'Ask Bonnie' service, which I've enjoyed following for a while now.
The latest mailbag throws up an old chestnut - how many spankos are there out there. When I was a spotty teenager I was convinced I was the only one, now I'd be able to put the word 'spank' into Google to know that there's a world of us.
Bonnie quotes a recent survey about sexual fantasy that says 18 per cent of men and seven per cent of women fantasize about spanking someone. For being spanked it's 11 per cent of men and 13 per cent of women.
Guess who?
So, look at a group of men and women and start doing the maths (or math). I've got a business event today, which will be boring, and will enjoy playing with the numbers.
Pick 10 men at random and decide which two are daydreaming about a bit of OTK and which is the one who'd like to be over the lap of the women on his left (or right). Or 10 women - who's the one who hankers after playing strict governess and who wants to be soundly smacked.
But when you start thinking about the survey's percentages it gets a bit more confusing. I like to be spanked and from time to time to spank too, so where do I fit into the 13-7 split?
Anyway, must go and get ready for my meeting. I'll leave you with the thought that the survey says 25 per cent fantasize about celebrities. That figure seems a bit low to me, but let's take it as accurate.
So, if you take 100 women, three will be thinking fondly of being spanked by a stong, strict celeb  and about two will be dreaming of dishing out the discipline on the red carpet. Which gives me something to think about on the motorway later - picking my celebs. At the moment I'm favouring gritty, tough Sam Elliott, the lovely Salma Hayek and, maybe, the oh, so deserving Lindsay Lohan.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Name that artist?

Came across this on  the great image site Retro & Creative Porn and I just love it to bits. Anyone know who the artisit is and where I can see more of his/her work?
It's all in the detail isn't it? Just occasionally I go out into the countryside with a pair of binoculars and some chunky walking boots. Not to spy on passionate lovers, but for a bit of birdwatching. So I know that the artist has put a lot of care and attention into getting that great crested grebe just right.

Monday, 12 December 2011

The joy of... bottom marks

Guilty pleasures, I love them. Years ago there was an ad campaign (for cream? or cakes?) that featured the line: "naughty, but nice". I think I mistook it for a life's mission statement, but doesn't it miss the point a wee bit? Isn't the 'nice' bit dependant on the 'naughty' bit? Without one you don't get the other.
What's the connection between cream cakes and the faint lines on my backside this morning? Both are naughty, but for me defintely nice. I love spanking marks and can't stop looking at them, touching them and thinking of them when I have them.
In the past when I had an office job it was a thrill to sneak into the loo at work, pull down my knicks and take a lingering look at my marks. Seeing a bit of bruising or the odd line was a real thrill - a dark secret I could hug to myself through the day.
The set I have at the moment are almost gone, but they have been with me for almost a week. They're like an echo of an incredible intense sensual experience and I'll sorry when they've gone.
And I also love the fact that they're evidence of my kinkiness. If anyone saw them they'd know me for what I am. They are, most certainly, a guilty pleasure.

Undercover celebrity

I love the way the world is now full of what I think of as undercover celebrities. The internet has freed us all to explore and share on every subject under the sun, hasn't it? When that comes to our darker desires that means the people who become the focus in these small, mostly private, worlds become celebrities of sort, doesn't it?
Who's that girl
When I spot a famous face I get excited in a way that bugs Significant Other. As a guilty pleasure I like the celebrity trash mags, while SO thinks they're a disgrace. So, SO is used to the squeak of delight that I can't control if I spot a famous face (or someone very close to, like a Michael Sheen-a-like at the cash machine or a Beyonce chopping onions in Subway).
Said squeak gave my recognition moment away on Saturday night when we went with a couple of friends to a pub we haven't visited before. As we walked in I couldn't help noticing that the blonde barmaid, pretty as a picture, was the image of the lovely Amber Pixie Wells...
For me it was like bumping into Hollywood A-lister. "What is it?" SO demanded, attracting the attention of our friends. With them all looking at me I had to mumble something about mislaying my phone and I know I blushed beet red - idiot.
I then spent most of the night watching 'Amber' from a distance. Presumably she's completely unaware of any resemblance, but a steady stream of spankos must be secretly thrilled by their encounter with a spanking star.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Rights for vanillas?

Bad move, I’ve upset Significant Other. The way things work is that over time we’ve reached an understanding that allows me the space to enjoy reading, writing and thinking things spanko as long as the reading and writing is kept  out of SO’s consciousness.
I also get my ration of CP-related activities too, which over time SO has got quite into. I say ration, because SO decides when and where and believes that too much of a good thing is bad for me. Most of the time the arrangement works.
But this morning I made the mistake of using the v-word, which SO hates. Being called vanilla is derogatory, says SO.  It amounts to saying that non-spankos are boring, apparently. And, we spankos think we’re ‘so’ special and look down on non-spankos in a way that can amount to arrogance.
That’s me told. At the time I scoffed; surely us spankos are an oppressed minority, laughed at and misunderstood by a righteous vanilla moral majority? But as the day has gone on I’m beginning to think SO may have a point.
Do I end up taking it all too seriously? Actually, me writing this post could probably be used as evidence for the prosecution. I'd better pop off and find something else to do - maybe I see if I can work a poor downtrodden and undervalued vanilla character into Begsi*.

*Current working title of the 1940s novel - Beryl Gets Stuck In (or Begsi for short).

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Poetry corner

I'm really enjoying spending time in the 1940s at the moment. The novel I have in mind is going to be set in the war years and I'm at that stage of gathering material, mood and feel.
As well as reading up on the Land Army I've been re-visiting an old collection of the poems of Sir John Betjeman. I had a fierce crush on his work a few years ago, but then fell out of love - so it's great to go back.
1940s tennis girl
My heroine is pretty clear in my mind now. She's positive, sporty and likes - to use an old-fashioned phrase - to get stuck in. So it seemd like meeting up with a friend when I got to to 'A Subaltern's Love Song' and its object of desire, Miss Joan Hunter Dunn.
Written in the early 1940s, Betjeman's  poem is a marvellous tale of unrequited love and pokes fun at the manners of the English middle classes. For some reason that I can't quite put my finger on I find lots of JB's poems sexy in a repressed, buttoned-up sort of way, and Miss Hunter Dunn has 'it' in spades.
She's 'furnish'd and burnish'd by Aldershot sun', sporty, strong and confident.

Love-thirty, love-forty, oh! weakness of joy,
The speed of a swallow, the grace of a boy,
With carefullest carelessness, gaily you won,
I am weak from your loveliness, Joan Hunter Dunn.

I want to be her, I want to be him. It's all a bit confusing (as is his mention of her boyish grace...) And it also feels a bit voyeuristic:

On the floor of her bedroom lie blazer and short,
And the cream-colour walls are be-trophied with sports...

And is it just me but do I dectect a hint of the spanko sentiment? 

Oh! Surrey twilight! importunate band!
Oh! strongly adorable tennis-girl's hand!

Betjeman's dream?
Probably not, but you never know. According to Paul Johnson he liked 'pigtails, gymslips, black stockings and navy-blue serge bloomers' and wrote of his own early CP experiences.
PS There was a real Joan, who apparently died in 2008. JB's poem was, she said, mostly fantasy.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Taxi service

Up before six this morning to drive a friend to the train station in the cold and dark. Lots of 'are we going to make it' stress and no time for a coffee. Three hours later I'm now in front of the computer and do have that coffee, but don't want to get on with the Day Job.
Driving back home I had talk radio on, but can't remember a word that was said. My mind was completely taken up with the adventures of my new heroine, who at the moment is known only as B.
So far I know the setting is rural and 1940s and that B is a Land Army girl. I've done a fair bit of reading into the Land Army story, including some great oral history docs on the BBC website.
Reading about uniforms, bunk beds and the dangers of getting nettled while 'spending a penny' under the hedge I can feel B's world coming together. The village hall dances and fresh and flirty Italian POWs are all just too good to pass up. Anyway, that will all have to wait. There's 'real' work to do, so  will have to wait until later.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Word play

Scolded, read the riot act, given a dressing down, whatever you call it. I think of it as being 'told off', which I know sounds rather mild.
During my very polite, middle class, English Home Counties upbringing we lived in fear of a good telling off. No raised voices, just a very stern talking to that nearly always did the trick. Which is maybe why what's said is so important for me now as part of the whole sexy discipline experience. A spanking without a 'telling off' is like ham without mustard.
Lack of verbal reprimand is criminal as far as I'm concerned. Bit of a tangent here, but why is it that you come across so many spanko movies where there's plenty of action during spanking scenes, attention to plot and costume but no decent dialogue?  What a waste.
Anyway, I've spent some time this morning working on what will hopefully be a new novel and have arrived at a scene thatis crying out for a good 'telling off'. It maybe be because it's a wet Sunday morning, cold and dark, but I can't get the dialogue to roll.
Writer's block, but of a particulalry spanko kind. The scolding is misfiring, the 'telling off' won't flow and the bit of dressing down I've got down on paper seems a too mechancial.
What I need is something new. What word or phrase does it for you? Is there something that, combined with a bit of finger-wagging, has the hairs standing up on the back of your neck? Any suggestions that you can pop into a comment here will be gratefully received... 
Alternatively, I could just find a mirror, tell myself I need to 'pull my socks up' and give my legs a sound smack or two (although self-spanking just doesn't really work, does it?)

Friday, 2 December 2011

The finishing line

It's taken two months of blood, sweat and tears but I've done it. The starting point was a question: why can't I find the sort of erotic novel that I like to read? Lots out their, but they weren't hitting the right spot.
So, I decided to write and publish one of my own. I'm a writer by profession so I was comfortable about putting the words together; it was going to be a novella, but then just growing, ending up at around 58,000 words.
What I hadn't expected was how much fun it turned out to be. I really felt connected with my sparky, spanko heroine Flick and rather miss her now she's gone.
And playing around with the historical setting was fun too. Probably because I've been watching too much 'Downton Abbey' I was stuck into a 19th Century/early 20th Century frame of mind.
As it turned out I shifted things back a few decades and made Flick's story into a homage to all that great Victorian country house erotica. You know, 'Frank & I' and that sort of thing. 
What turned out to be difficult was the publishing process. Getting to grips with new software and not being able to ask advice from friends was frustrating (they'd have wanted to know why I was asking and I'm not brave enough to be out-and-open).
Anyway, it's done. I've sent Flick out into the world. Do have a look at the sample at Amazon - I'd love to hear what you think.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Industrial (re-)action

What a bummer. Woke up this morning to the thought that today is one of Significant Other's rest days (SO works shifts) and rainy, mid-week days off often turn out to be play days. Spent some time thinking about recent naughtiness and misdemeanours that might need to be addressed...
And then I remembered that today here in the UK the public sector workers are on strike. Which means that the school is shut and the kids are home. Damn!
So here I am trying to get my books straight to send to the accountant. I'd rather be finishing up the edit on Project Kindle, my attempt at a spanko novel, but can't really do that with the offspring around.
So it's forms, figures and a calculator. It's probably for the best as I'm very close to the returns deadline and I don't want to get hit with the penalty surcharge (Note to editor: is there a story idea here? Lazy client, strict accountant...)

Update: It has been brought to my attention that the vengeful accountant story is already out there... It has been made flesh as part of the marvellous Pandora's new Dreams of Spanking project. Wow, how sexy is Kaelah's accent?? Lovely pussycat too.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

In the method

Why is it that you can just take against some film actors, while others you really warm to? I've read a lot about 'A Dangerous Method' and I love the Freud/Jung thing, the costumes look fantastic and I can't get enough of Viggo Mortenson (good enough to eat).
And to that the fact that the script has been written by Christopher Hampton. How good much better can it be. I'd put 'Dangerous Liaisons' in my Top Six all-time costume dramas.
But can I go and see it? Reading Hermoine over at Hermoine's Heart on the subject reminds me that I have to decide one way or the other soon. It's Keira Knightley. I have a real problem with her. She always seems so limp lettuce-lifeless in whatever role she takes on. Loved 'Atonement', but KK didn't convince, while 'The Edge of Love' lost it every time she was on screen.
The critics don't sell it to me. For example, the guy in The Guardian says "what the spanking can't do, unfortunately, is knock some life into this heartfelt, well-acted but curiously underwhelming slab of Masterpiece Theatre".
But I'll probably swallow my pride and go and buy my ticket if only to sit in a crowded cinema watching a spanking scene. That's too good to pass up on.

Friday, 25 November 2011

Surf break

Up early today to face a day wading through a mountain of words. I can only do editing in big chunks, but today I fear I may have bitten off more than I can chew - 30,000 words by the end of the day...
I plan to be especially sharp on the use and abuse of the semi-colon today, thanks largely to a useful discussion about punctuation over at Remittance Girl. Already straightened one or two out since I started and it's only breakfast time.
'Breakfast' is probably stretching it as I've only had a coffee and a short recreational bit of web exploration. I've been trying to find out a bit more about the artist Jim Black, but haven't got very far. Apparently he was a Belgian whose real name was Luc Lafnet and who died early in World War Two. He lived in Paris and published his erotic art under pseudonyms - one of which was Jim Black.
The Jim Black drawings are wonderful. I love the energy of them - there's usually a lot of emotional intensity in there. The spanker is in a passion and is spanking in anger. Often every muscle is being tested by the effort of correction. At the same time the poor spankees (both female and male) are overcome by the moment.
Anyway, no more spanko surfing - the semi-colon calls.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Those were the days...

Or were they? It's interesting how long it takes for a decade to begin to go all hazy with nostalgia.  The 1990s are in sharp detail - we were there, weren't we, so we know. But the 1890s are all fuzzy and soft focus and just right for all sorts of imaginings.
At the moment I'd say that the 1950s were going through the process. They are certainly being re-invented and especially by spankos, who see the decade as a sort of domestic discipline nirvana. And why not?
The fashions turn up in shoots and there are any number of stories featuring no-nonsense dads, scarily strict mothers and 18-plus daughters (and sometimes sons) who accept corporal punishment when they do wrong.
And it sort of works for me as a child of the 1970s. Growing up in the 70s corporal punishment was part of our lives, but a rarity (where I lived anyway). But adults were more than happy to tell us about how we had it good and how the tough the rules - and punishments - were when they were kids.
As a spanko-in-the-making it gave me a thrill - it was scary and exciting all at the same time. I'd love to know your favourite decade for spanko fantasy - please vote in the poll over on the right of this page.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

The End

No more new chapters, first draft complete. Just after mindnight I had the pleasure of typing 'The End' and the first draft of Project Spanko Novel was complete. At about 15 per cent over the target word count it is now going to need a lot of pruning, but it's a big step in the right direction. It has been fun and a treat to be writing something that is led until by you - no publisher or editor tugging at the reins.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Start the week

Early start to the day and it's grey, cold and gloomy outside. Plus fog and heavy rain. Significant Other has an exam. I suggest we forget the exam and stay under the covers in bed for an hour or two. I have a very attractive mental image of how we could spend the time. A grumpy SO says I'm naughty and heads for the motorway - without pausing to address my naughtiness (sulk).

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Travel section

First-class seating
Four episodes in and I'm loving the costume drama Pan Am. The hype was misleading - it is not the new Mad Men - but it's fun and the costumes are unbelieable (as is the CIA sub-plot). Those tight, blue pencil skirts are worth watching in themselves.  Then there's also the Spanking Startles.
I've only seen three of the four episodes and have notched up two so far. That's a little under a Spanking Startle an epidsode. Maybe in time we'll get an actual spanking... Christina Ricci or Margot Robbie? Tough choice.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Our present difficulties

How subtle should a Christmas present hint be? From time to time we've talked about the sort of hairbrush I need. And I mean NEED.
Classic, made of wood, not too big, not too small. You know the thing otherwise you wouldn't be here.
But my mostly-vanilla Significant Other doesn't seem to get the message. A tacky plastic supermarket hairbrush may do the job but it spoils the moment if you're obsessed with period detail.
Yes, I could buy my own I know. But that would miss the point - it's the thought that counts, isn't it? Just the right brush all wrapped up in Christmas paper with a little bow on it would be the best present ever.
Another hint will have to be pinged in SO's direction and I think I've just found the perfect thing. In all the Love our Lurkers excitement I missed Dioneo's great post 25 Reasons Why Spankos are So Awesome over at Ecco Spanko. It's wry, witty and made me laugh.
As a sometime kayaker I like number 13, 'If one of us is up a creek, there's probably a paddle around.' From experience I'd recommend taking a spare paddle just in case, but I digress. Dioneo's reason  number 2 is the one I'm hoping SO will pick up on: 'We're the reason antique shops sell hairbrushes.'

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

An eyeful of inspiration

Life's an odd mixture at the moment. I'm close to the end of the draft one of my first novel, an adventure into trying to spin out my spanko fantasies, and trying to hit a self-imposed deadline. That's exciting, but it's happening at a time when there are deadlines in my ordinary writing life too.
So, I'm having to squeeze two or three hours into the day for the novel and do everything else as well. It's normally an hour early in the morning and another at midnight.
When there is time to write it's often difficult getting my head into the right space to order. It can take some time browsing through photo blogs to get there.
The great thing about the randomness of the stuff you come across is that it can send your imagination off in directions that might otherwise not have come along. Like this image discovered this morning.
What is it all about? Love the outfits and the period feel of it all. I've spent the rest of the day with it on my mind (when I should have been focussed on something much more 'important'). 

Monday, 14 November 2011

I like...

Interesting thoughts on ads over at A Voice in the Corner. Those advertising creatives are naughty, aren't they? Picture one really caught my eye, not because of his dire hair but for her luscious underwear. Drawers, pants, knickers? Not sure what you'd call them, but I love 'em.
I wish I had a pair to tuck away in the bottom drawer for those special occasions. If anyone knows where I could get something similiar do please, please let me know.

Are you sitting comfortably..?

Then I'll begin. (But before I do, I want you to get that thought about comfort, sitting and a well-whipped bottom out of your grubby little mind). What's history and what's historical fiction? The line is being blurred, says leading historian and fiction author Alison Weir.
I've just been listening to a fascinating discussion about writing history on BBC Radio 4 and thought Weir's contribution was spot on. She talked about the line between history and historical fiction (in books and on film) and how it is becoming dangerously blurred.
Her latest non-fiction work Mary Boleyn: 'The Great and Infamous Whore' tells the story of Anne Boleyn's sister. There's little fact to go on when it comes to Mary's life, says Weir, but her story has been spun and re-spun by so many historical novelists that the truth was been all but smothered.
Maybe historical fiction writers should put 'health warnings' on their work. Something to make it clear that what they're offering isn't a history lesson, but a fireside story.

Friday, 11 November 2011

Book Club: Frank & I

I like the idea of being a member of a book club, but from what I've seen in practice they look a little dull. Reading Booker prize shortlist novels is dreary enough without having to then dissect them with a collection of worthy lit chicks.
How much better to a member of a book club that discusses the sort of books you like to read? So I've decided to launch my own club here. Yes, there is a drawback - it's only got one member, me. But the upside of that there's little chance of a serious fall-out at meetings.
To kick things off I've chosen the 19th Century classic Frank & I. Spolier alert here - it's the story of a runaway who is taken in by a charitable English gent. At first he thinks he's a boy, but he's actually a girl.
There's a lot of corporal punishment of the MM-but-actually-MF variety. Then there's plenty more MF with a little FF thrown in for good measure. Lots of spankings, canings, birching etc, but for me it quickly gets a bit repetitive.
What I find fascinating about Frank & I is the insight it gives into the life of the wealthy Victorian landowner, or at least the author's take on that life. Charles Beaumont doesn't really have anything to do but enjoy himself and as a rich man the women around him are expected to serve up what Charley fancies whenever and wherever he fancies it.
For example, he keeps a young women called Maud in a house in London for when he's in town. Maud is less than enthusiastic about Charley's new-found interest in "the rod", but puts up with it. Charely says "I slept with her every night and in the mornings always renewed my vigour by birching her big, white bottom till it turned red as a rose, smarting pain making tears come into her eyes". Not much sense of a 50:50 relationship going on.
Mind you, by the end of things the girls do seem to have things sorted out to their own liking. Frances ('Frank') is the beautiful, accomplished mistress of her own destiny while cheerful Charley has become a bit of a sad, old loser. Serves him right, I'd say. 

Dirty little secret

I met a writer friend for a drink last night for a bit of literary chit-chat. He's had a couple of novels published, but has to have a day job. I make a living from journalism, but I'm a novice fiction writer.
So we go in for a bit of mutual mentoring.
And he's delighted my current project is going well, but would like to help. When he offered to read and comment on completed chapters I had to look away because I was struggling to a straight face and I'm pretty sure I blushed beet red.
The prospect of my rather prim and proper (very vanilla) friend reading all that STUFF cracked me up.
I suppose I could bowdlerise it just for him - go though the draft and edit out all the red bottom-related material. It would take a lot of cutting, but at least his read through wouldn't take very long...

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Out from the shadows

I've been a lurker myself for far too long now, I know. Shame on me. It's one reason why I've decided it was time to set myself some homework - by creating this blog. And by doing more commenting elsewhere.
Having taken the plunge I'm finding it really quite exhilarating. I have so much to ay and would love some of it to be a conversation.
LOL Day seems like a great idea. I'd be thrilled if you'd take the time to comment, even if it was just to tell me to stop nagging. Anyway, I'm off to do my own commenting elsewhere.

PS No link between LOL and the image. It was just one that I feel some sort of link with.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Maid to measure

Is that a saucepan?
Maids in fiction get a raw deal. Or in the world of spanko reality, a raw ass. Often hot, red, stripey.
She's there to get something for somebody, do something for (or to) somebody or have something done to her by somebody.
That's how it is for Robert Coover's character in 'Spanking the Maid', or how I remember it anyway. It must be more than 15 years since I read the book. StheM was first published in 1982, I had a first edition at one time and for a spanko it was a buzz.
Somewhere along the way I threw the book out, which turns out to be a mistake as I could get £50 for it at the moment on eBay. But now it turns out that the novella has been re-issued with another of Coover's short stories as a Penguin Modern Classic, so I think I'll have to re-read it.
The Guardian's review sums up how the story works: "A maid and her master are each committed to their own hard service: she, attempting to perform her simple duties without error; he, supplying punishment by rod, belt, hairbrush, whip, cane and slipper when she inevitably fails."
Coover didn't mean it to be titillating, but for a nascent spanko it was thrilling stuff. How I wanted to be that poor maid facing spanking day after day with no end in sight.
Sometimes revisiting a book or movie that you once loved is a disappointment, isn't it? StheM certainly isn't everyone's cup of tea. One Amazon reviewer asks: "How much do I want to read about the naughty maid who can't do her work properly and needs to be spanked in a variety of different ways."
How much? In my case, quite a bit.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Photographic memory

There’s a problem with writing novel-length fiction if your memory isn’t as sharp as it could be. Mine’s pretty good, I would say. It can deal with a mountain of stuff pretty well – the kid’s lunch money, the deadline for my weekly column, the tax form, putting out the dustbins... it goes on.
So somewhere in there with all that I need to find room for my characters – their back story, what they wear, how they look. It’s a problem. This morning it was Felicity’s ass.
It’s been five chapters since it last made an appearance and I can’t remember much about it. Voluptuous, womanly and wonderful or neat, toned and athletic? JLo or Lindsay Lohan? The chapter in question isn’t on the flash drive I’m using today so there wasn’t time to look back. Felicity is having to journey on into chapter 12 with ‘XXXX’ where her bottom should be.
It’s far from ideal. Speaking to another (vanilla) author recently he told me he cut out pictures from magazines of men and women that he wanted to use as models for his characters. Stuck on the wall next to his desk they were an instant reference point.
Good idea. But I’m not sure how having a print-out of Felicity’s rear end on the wall would play with my family, friends, visitors or the guy who comes to read the electricity meter.

Mirror, mirror

More on perspective. A beautiful image new at MarQe's Study. A well-placed mirror gives a handy extra dimension, doesn't it. Good for checking out your cane stripes after the event too.

Monday, 7 November 2011

All about perspective

What makes the perfect spanking picture? I've just been reading Pixie's post about her picture particulars and find what she has to say interesting (and the comments too). I'm not sure what I like best out of a situation. Seeing the spankee's face is important and I love it when a good anguished facial expression is combined with a nice red bottom in the same shot. But then I do also love cornertime shots too and the pre-punishment moment of anticipation.
Seeing the spanker's face is less important. My preferences are probably about identifying with the spankee - I want to be in her skin.

Poor marks for history

Silence. Sit up straight at the back. Yes, I mean you. Now I've got your attention, open your history book.
If you have one. Because history teaching in the UK seems to have got seriously lost and the subject is in serious trouble.
What I remember from my time at school is lessons that were deadly dull, but at least we learned a few facts. The Romans, 1066, a Hundred Years War that didn't last 100 years and Queen Victoria as Empress of the globe's pink bits.
More recently history teaching has been squashed under a suffocating duvet of political correctness. Add in a severe attack of cultural cringe and the patient is looking terminal.
There's no Island Nation story because the curriculum hops about from one period to another and British expansionism is airbrushed out. So kids end up knowing a bit about the Romans, a fact or two about the Tudors and that Victorian children worked down mines and got whacked a lot, but have no idea which period came first.
Pupils don't learn about big events, instead they're asked to empathise with the people of the past. In practice that seems to mean that they visit a museum where someone dressed up as a Victorian schoolmarm shouts and waves a cane to convince them that 19th Century Britain was a very scary place to be (forget all the great things achieved during Victoria's reign).
It's good news that the government is taking the problem seriously enough to have a review of the way history is taught. But the heat generated by the debate doesn't suggest that things are going to get any better soon.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

As good as it gets?

For atmosphere? It has to be the work of Louis Malteste. His creations draw me in in a way that nobody else's manage to do. I can look at those drawings time and again and never be quite sure of the story behind each one.
I know most (all?) were book illustrations, so presumably he was making pictures to match the stories he was given.  A job of work that he did with real aplomb.
But I like to look at thepictures as stand-alone images without that baggage and love weaving my own little daydreams around them. It is something to do when you're on the train to work.
Here's one for Monday morning. Not sure what's going on here. It's clear she's going to get what's coming. Those pretty drawers are going to be around her knees and the birch on the chair is going to get used. But why are the flapper girls getting to watch? And is that a playful pat on the bottom. or a slap?

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Tightly laced

The corset. Could anything be more sexy, to look at anyway. To wear they're not so much fun. What I find fascinating about corsets is the way they have gone from an everyday, practical item of underwear to something that symbolises sex to us 21st Century types. And a garment that was seen as restricting and controlling women is now all tied up with the image of women in control, the woman with the whip. Is it going to happen to things we wear today? Will today's cheap and cheerful supermarket knickers thrill 22nd Century fetishists?

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Queen Victoria's big pants

Passion killers. That's how the BBC breakfast bloke described Queen Victoria's silk drawers a day or two ago. She wouldn't have been amused, neither was I.
Yes, they're big and a bit plain, but it's all a matter of perspective, isn't it? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and I'd say that on the right behind those drawers - or something like them - could set the pulse racing.
Something like them must have worked for Prince Albert. Didn't he and Queen V have loads of kids? And they turned out to be hot stuff at the auction in Edinburgh - somebody paid £10,000 for them.
One question though, what did Victorian men wear under their trousers? When I've been researching 19th Century women's underwear there's lots of detail, but about men's pants nothing. Is that because I'm looking in the wrong places, or did Prince Albert and his contemporaries go commando?