Tuesday, October 30, 2012

I'm a Flirty Author Bitch!!!

Officially!!!

I've taken on the job of blogging at the Flirty Author Bitches blog the first Saturday of every month.  I figure I can handle a once a month blogging commitment and this will enable me to stay in the loop and share my thoughts on a variety of subjects.  I'm just waiting to receive the rules and guidelines for posting from the wonderful Lex Valentine.



This Saturday, November 3rd, will be my debut post.  So come on by and have a morning cup of coffee with me as we kickstart our weekend :)

~ Liz Lister

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Kidnapped...

...this naked cowboy from the Cup O Porn Website.


I will be guest blogging there tomorrow in the Wine and Whine Wednesday spot - so check it out :)  They will be giving away a free e-copy of Beyond the Edge on my behalf on Friday!


Cheers,

Liz

Monday, October 22, 2012

Next Great Gay Superheroes!!!

Hahahaha!

My wonderful and crazy friends, Morgan and Richard, donned superhero costumes for a party this past weekend.  I think you'll agree that they make very sexy caped crusaders...








KAPOW!!!

Keep fighting the good fight, girls ;)

*Muah*

~ Liz


Announcing...

...my plans to make Beyond the Edge into Book 1 of a 3 book series!



The story of Tate, Sebastian and James is not over yet, folks! I am currently writing the sequel and, let me just say, these men continue to fascinate me.

The questions are:

Can Tate and Sebastian make a monogamous relationship work?
Can Tate stop dreaming of James and remembering their final weekend together?
Will Sebastian be able to make peace with Tate's desire for another man?

Book 2 in the series is now titled:

The Cross and the Trinity (projected release, Fall 2013)

With Book 3 taking the title:

Varieties of Religious Experience (projected release, Fall 2014)

*****

I am so excited to be taking the story in this direction!  Stay tuned for updates, excerpts and inspirational photos!

~ Liz

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

High Stepping Ponygrrl


I recently met a very interesting young woman, also named Liz coincidentally, who enjoys dressing and acting as a pony on occasion.  Since I'd interviewed leather pups in the past, I wanted to find out more about this fetish/interest.  Luckily, she agreed to answer some questions for me.


1          1. So, Liz...pony play. What's it all about?

Well, there are a lot of variations to pony play, but the basic breakdown goes as follows:  one person takes on aspects of horses- whether its gear, or behaviours, or both, and the other person takes the reins and acts as a Handler (in a ‘top’ position).  It can be about Dominance and Submission, it can be about BDSM, it can be about sex, it can be about bondage or humiliation- but it will involve aspects of horses and horsemanship. 

There are a lot of groups out there that talk about various kinds of pony play, but two resources I recommend are ‘The Human Equine’ by Rebecca Wilcox, and taking a look at what the search engine on Fetlife pulls up when you enter ‘pony play’ in the box.  ‘Pony Play’ the group, and ‘Alternative Pony’ are two really great general groups to find out more about pony play from.

2. Why a pony, as opposed to a pup or a kitten?

Well, for me personally, I feel that my personality and characteristics are more in keeping with how we perceive horses than dogs or cats.  When that perception crosses into play and the BDSM and Leather worlds, I still feel an affinity to Ponies as opposed to pups or kitties.  Pups are very playful, full of energy and some mischief.  Those who choose pup identities often say they have ‘pup like’ characteristics, and the same is often heard from people who choose ‘kitties’ when they engage in critter play.  Just a side note, critter play is an umbrella term for play where one person takes on characteristics of an animal.  It is not to be confused with Furry activities or culture- they are separate in that (and this is only my understanding, so asking a Furry would be more appropriate for more information) critter play is based in BDSM and Leather culture, while Furry play is based in Furry culture which comes from a cosplay basis.  There are very different values between the two groups, although you can get a lot of cross- over of how critters manifest their animal selves and engage with each other.




So, back to the question at hand.  I have always loved horses, and felt that if I were to adhere to a faith or spirituality that included spirit animals, my spirit animal would be a horse.  As a child, I rode, I studied horses, I dreamt of owning horses and I played at being a horse.  Fast forward to being a young adult and discovering kink, and a lot of those passions fell away.  However, the affinity I felt for what horses are in our society- property, pets, cherished servants, etc- was reflected in a lot of the power exchange I was witnessing in others around me, and in my own relationship.

I had been introduced to a few pups and kitties, and while I really enjoy interacting with pups and kitties, the concept of being one didn’t really appeal to me.  Actually, for a long time, I had very negative feelings towards the pony play I did come across- mostly in porn.  Being a bio- horse lover since childhood, I couldn't understand sexualizing an animal that I loved so much. That was how I interpreted Pony Play for quite some time, as a sexual fetish, humiliation play (not that there is anything wrong with doing pony play this way, it just wasn’t for me at the time).  After a while, I wanted to understand where my feelings of hostility towards this kind of play came from, and I realized that I'd only a limited exposure to the many facets of pony play, and that I actually felt an attraction to it. I felt vulnerable about my personal interpretation, which is of being a human pony, complete with as close to the true psychology of a bio horse as I can get, as well as a breed, height, training goals, etc. Once I was able to realize that there were different and varied kinds of pony play (I understand much better those ponies and their players who enjoy the BDSM aspects of pony play, even if I don't identify with it that way now), I was able to give myself permission to explore my own pony self. I just wasn't sure how to go about it.

I'd always felt that if I had a spirit animal, it was a horse. I felt that I shared the attributes of a horse- loyal, sensitive, smart, capable, strong. I felt that I needed a herd (my human circle of loved ones), and that I had it in me to surrender my will to another through the kind of trust and guidance a good rider builds with their mount.      
     
3.     How much gear do you have and when do you have the opportunity to wear it?

I have some gear- depending on the kind of play you do, you can have a lot of gear or
very little.  If you are a textile fetishist and are really into the gear aspect, you may have a
bodysuit, a tail, special shoes, special gloves, a mask, a headpiece, a tail, and then all
the tack (the saddle, bridle, etc)! 

Or, perhaps you are a SM or sex pony and you simply have a bit gag that gets you into
the headspace. 

Or, you could be a human pony, and thus require as much tack- harness, bridle, bit, reins,
cart, etc as a biological horse would. 




I myself am a bit of a working pony and a bit of a show pony, and I have no full time
Handler.  Often Handlers decide (with the pony’s input) how much gear they want to tack
the pony with.  So, as a pony with no trainer, I am building my own gear to use.  My
mental image of my pony self is of a grey pony, so I have a grey bodysuit that I wear.  I
have a pair of ears that I have fashioned from some actual pony gear that I wear.  I have a
waist cincher, which helps me feel the constriction I imagine a saddle or cart harness
would give.  It also doubles as decoration for when I shift between fetish and human
pony- fetish being more sexy, costume-y play, while human pony play I get deep into the
headspace and take on the behaviours of a pony.  I have an actual harness coming,
which I hope to add on top of the cincher or even instead of the cincher for different looks
and feeling.  I have a bridle, and a set of reins.  I have a couple of lines, which are ropes
with clips that you use to lead a horse somewhere, secure their head to a hitching post,
etc.  I have a lunge line which is a long lead that is used for training, so that the pony can
work in a circle around the Handler. 

I have a mask so I can go out in public-it is very showy, and I as a pony feel like it’s a
special occasion when I wear it.  I have two to three pairs of shoes and boots I wear,
depending on the kind of play I will be doing, and I accent my legs with legwarmers to
represent the white markings I would have if I were an actual pony.  I have a tail, and I do
my hair in the way I imagine a show pony might have it done.  I also have some gloves
that I wear to help get me into the mindset.

I don’t get to wear my gear and get into pony headspace often.  Firstly, I am owned, but
do not have a regular Trainer.  So, if I get into pony headspace, I do not have someone to
take responsibility for me.  This means that when I do put on my pony gear, I maintain my
‘regular’ self, and don’t let go.  Pony headspace is much like subspace.  Most ponies
become nonverbal, they will react differently to stimuli and circumstances than they
would in their ‘human’ mindset, and they are not always aware of their physical state. 
Wearing my gear is bittersweet at the moment, because when I put it on I yearn to sink
into pony headspace and just be a pony.  However, if you are at a general play party or
out in public, you need to maintain verbal communication and retain the cultural
behaviours that are required for the moment.  So, I wear my pony gear to events where I
will have the opportunity to engage in pony activities, such as the Pony Camp at
Brimstone in NJ this upcoming November.  There, I will be assisting with workshops on
pony play, engaging in training with a Handler, and competing in a show.  I will get to go
into pony headspace with the Handler, and work on a Dressage performance for the
show.




I wear my gear in public for events such as the Pride Parade, Nuit Blanche in Toronto,
Sexapolooza, and other alternative sexual events.  I also wear my gear to workshops and
seminars that I participate in, and occasionally to play parties.  However, one big
constraint with ponies of the human or bio variety is space!

4. How large/small is the pony community in Ottawa?

Ottawa has a surprisingly large pony community.  I say surprising because it seems to be
something that individuals do at events as a side activity, or privately, and so the social
connectedness of a community is not visible.  However, if you ask those who have been
in the Leather and BDSM community for a while, everyone knows a pony and Trainer
couple, everyone can point out a pony or two.  I am trying to bring these ponies together,
and create a space for ponies and their Trainers to engage and interact, get connected
and have events.




5. I hear you've put together a group for like-minded people. What's it called and how can
people contact you?

My group is called the Ottawa Pony and Critter Club!  You can find us on Facebook,
though you will need to be invited to join, and you can find us on Fetlife. 
https://fetlife.com/groups/44931 , where you don’t need an invite to join.

My handle on Facebook is Ponygrrl Bixophon, and I am Ponygirl_Bixy on Fetlife.  We
meet once a month on average, and I am working towards creating events geared
towards critter play and pony play specifically in the Ottawa area.

6. Finally, what would you say to people who don't understand this type of kink?

I would say that Pony Play may not appear to be like any other kink at first glance, but
once you get to understand what individuals get from it, and what gets played out in the
play, you will see that it is a fantastic kink!  Pony play is largely based in D/s, and easily
accommodates textile fetishists such as rubber and leather enthusiasts. It is also very
photogenic, if you are excited about visual scenes. If you like humiliation play, being
turned into a ‘beast of burden’ for your lover is sexy, as is being ‘forced’ to take a bit gag
or be trussed in a harness or wear a tail plug.  If you are into submission and service,
becoming a pony is a great way to take a break from ‘human’, vanilla cares and worries
and surrender to your Trainer’s guidance.  If you are looking for something engaging that
both you and your partner can do together while still maintaining your power dynamic,
pony training is a great way to build skills!  Learning how to train your own submissive to
perfectly respond to your commands and then together acquiring skills to compete in an
international pony play event is a perfect way to engage in power exchange, work on
physical and mental skills together, and display your hard work to others who enjoy and
appreciate what you are doing.




*****

Excerpt from a journal entry by Liz (Bixy) about finding her inner pony and letting her out for the first time:

I had a lot of other things on my plate before the event, but I'd been thinking about pony play in the months before the event when by chance my Sir noticed a call out for demo ponies for some workshops at the event we were going to. After some discussion with the presenter, I cautiously agreed to watch her videos and train on my own before meeting her. I spent those weeks anxiously contemplating what it was for me to be a pony while working on my gaits at the local ball diamond. I found the training soothing and rhythmic, it reminded of the headspace I got into when running. I also slowly developed a picture of my pony self in my mind, and began wondering what it would be like to feel someone on the other end of reins.
I was very nervous coming to the event, as I generally don't want to let people down, and here I was about to engage in something I was very inexperienced at- and being a demo to boot. However, my first Trainer was experienced and excellent, and really encouraged me to let go of human concerns and listen to my animal self. I had kept seeing my pony as grey, as young and inexperienced but trainable, as having a huge curiosity for the world. My pony was able to come out, take over, and run free that weekend!

I had intended to focus on another aspect of myself, but after the first training session with my Trainer, I was hooked. We hit it off pretty well, and were able to meet for training every day. I went to the Pony Meet n Greet at the event, and was able to see how other ponies expressed themselves, played, and interacted. I had a second Trainer, who had some pony experience, who introduced me to a different style of bridle and I found my pony self- 'Bixy' (or 'Skittles', to my Sir, because she is skittish) responding to the new environment, to the other ponies, to the people around her.

It was amazing- I hadn't felt so much pure, unreserved joy since childhood! I went to many of the pony workshops, and was a demo for the 'gaits' workshop (which focusses on the different ways ponies - bio and human- walk and run). Someone asked if I'd be in the pony show (which I had intended on watching to learn more), and my Trainer encouraged me to enter- so I did!

The show was something else, for another discussion. In the end, I won a ribbon (everyone won a ribbon), but again that unabashed sense of joy and freedom swept over me. I am so proud of my ribbon, even though I have a long journey ahead of me in terms of where my pony is going.

Since then I've kept my memories of that event close to relive when I get wistful. I don't have as many opportunities to let her run, but Bixy is in me, waiting to get out and tear up some grass, feel the bit in her mouth, and the tug of the reins!

*****

Thanks so much, Liz, for a fascinating interview!  Good luck with the Ottawa Pony and Critter Club and I hope to be seeing you very soon!

~ Liz L.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Pup Pals...

Here are some shots that people paid to have taken with the Pups and have kindly allowed me to post here:

With Martin:


With Brian:


Bear and Scout:


Martin, Kira and Pup Fidget:


I'm only sorry that I don't have a shot of me with the pups.  Greg and I were out for a friend's birthday party and had planned on going for a quick photo, but I wimped out and drove us home instead.  Damn you, fatigue *shakes fist*.  I'm really regretting it right now.

~ Liz

Pup Power!!!

The Ottawa Pups were busy this past weekend!

Here is a photo of Scout Zeb and his handler, Guy, at Sexapalooza on Saturday afternoon:


And here is most of the Pack at the Centretown Pub benefit for Bruce House, Pictures with the Puppies, on Saturday evening.  Between the Pups themselves and the Ottawa Knights, over $700 was raised for Bruce House (residential care facility for HIV patients).


Here we have, from top left to bottom right, Pup Fidget, Pup Rolph, Scout Zeb, Pup Johnny, Pub Bear and Pup Jay.

Great job, Pups!!!

A cuter group of man-pups could not even be imagined ;)

~ Liz

Friday, October 12, 2012

Coming Soon!!!

A fascinating interview with Ponygrrl Bixophon about the intricacies and interpretations of pony play.  I'm just waiting for her to send me some photos to add to my post...

~ Liz

Slopes.

I just love the slopes of this man's body:


~ Liz

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Great Review!!!

Great review of Beyond the Edge:

~

Don't be fooled by the blurb of this book, this is not an m/m/m romance, although there are a number of menage sex scenes, but rather a love triangle. Tate is a sub without a Dom at the moment. He prefers it that way and isn't looking for commitment. After an amazing afternoon with Dom, James, Tate put his name on James' waiting list and now it's his turn for a weekend of submission. When he visits James for a pre-weekend discussion, James surprises him by telling Tate that he has asked another sub, Sebastian, to join them for the weekend. Tate is initially a little disappointed by this, until he meets Sebastian who Tate finds very attractive.

The first part of this book is made up of the initial meeting of the characters followed by an intense and lengthy description of their weekend together. Everything is described in detail, and all from Tate's point of view. This allowed for a very intensive introduction into a BDSM weekend, and I found it all rather absorbing. Tate is a sympathetic narrator, who takes the reader through his feelings about the weekend. His love of submission, his attraction to both James and Sebastian. We also see of his slight awkwardness in taking part in what is quite a personal experience with another sub. Tate is the experienced sub, and I liked his sense of pride and protectiveness as he helps Sebastian to find his own feet as a sub. They form a natural bond over the weekend, born of a shared experience and a discovery that both of them compliment each other well.

By the middle of the book I felt that I knew Tate and Sebastian well, and it seemed natural that they would continue their relationship after the weekend. Things change for them in terms of their dynamic as they are now no longer in a weekend 'scene' but are equal in the bedroom and out. This transition worked well between them and is demonstrated through a few sex scenes - perhaps a few too many because I began to grow a little bored by all the sex by this stage of the book. We also discover a particular kink, which Sebastian feels he can explore with Tate, but if I'm honest didn't really thrill me that much. It wasn't my thing, but I thought that the author had done a good job in showing why it worked for Sebastian, and it also showed how much Tate had become attached in that he was willing to explore this kink with Sebastian.

As I said earlier, by this stage of the book, I felt I knew both Tate and Sebastian. I didn't, however, really feel like I knew James very much. As a Dom during their weekend, he had remained set apart slightly from the subs and still in my head he was a shadowy, if forceful, figure who had provided a weekend of intense pleasure. It was surprising then, when it all came out that he had strong feelings for Tate, because I didn't really pick that up from their initial weekend together. The second half of the book concentrates on the love triangle aspect, but because it hadn't been foreshadowed enough earlier in the book, I didn't feel James' strong attraction, and his confession of feelings to Tate felt a little forced and flat when compared to the development of feelings shown between Tate and Sebastian. This bothered me a little.

Another theme within the latter part of the book was that of switching roles. Tate and Sebastian are subs, and Tate especially makes a big deal at the beginning of the story about needing the submission. Later in the book these lines become a little blurred with both Tate and Sebastian taking on the role of Dom. At first I wasn't so sure about this but later I realised the necessity of seeing the subs take turns at being a Dom. Both men need submission, and without the ability to switch, I could see there being problems in the future, especially if neither want to share their relationship with another Dom. In the end, I decided that the way they are trying to muddle through the beginnings of their own D/s relationship seemed realistic.

Overall, this was an interesting and engaging BDSM book which was quite heavy on the sex scenes, but nonetheless managed to remain very character focused. I may not have been so convinced by the love triangle, but there were other parts of the book which did work for me and so I would happily recommend it to those who like BDSM themed romance.

~ Jenre, Goodreads, October 10th, 2012

Jenre, thank you so much for such a positive and detailed review!  I'm so glad you enjoyed the story :))))

~ Liz

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

New Cover for Office Politics (just on Goodreads)

I'm going to use this image which I have the rights to for my website as the cover for my Office Politics story on Goodreads.  It looks like a guy thinking about a recent kiss, right?  Maybe?


Anyway, it's better than the generic Love is Always Write cover ;)

~ Liz