Jeremy Edwards, “The Pleasure Dial” Oysters & Chocolate Press

Official release date for The Pleasure Dial: An Erotocomedic Novel of Old-Time Radio isn’t until November 17… but OC Press is taking pre-orders now—at 1930s prices! To learn how to reserve your brand-new Jeremy e-book with a brand-old setting, go to Jeremy’s site. You’ll be paying $2.99, which is 40% off the cover price!

synopsis of book:

The year is 1934, and amiable New York gag writer Artie Plask has taken the West Coast plunge. His first day on staff with a top radio show introduces him to the irresistible Mariel Fenton, a wit among wits who immediately takes an interest in all aspects of Artie’s life—especially his private life. As Artie finds his feet in a world of blustering comedians, pansexual sex goddesses, timid screen legends, exhibitionistic scriptwriters, and self-infatuated geniuses, Mariel leads him on a zany journey up and down the pleasure dial—a giddy romp through Hollywood that’s chock-full of airwaves showdowns, writing-room counterplots, devious impersonations, naked meetings, and a sensuality-drenched assortment of erotic escapades.

This post was taken from Jeremy Edward’s blog. He has read on several occasions at the Erotic Literary Salon and perhaps will honor us again with a reading this summer.

http://jerotic.blogspot.com/2011/10/pre-order-pleasure-now.html?zx=cccb4b20a7fc1568

Horror of South Africa’s ‘corrective rape’

The Erotic Literary Salon not only accepts work that titillates, but also informs. Sensexual is the word I use to describe the pieces that are read at the Salon. As muse I offer information to expand awareness of sexual rights. They are not always pretty, as the article below, but most important to inform and perhaps to be used in your future writings.

“It was supposed to be an ordinary night out with friends for 20-year-old Zukiswa Gaca but it ended with her lying on a railway track attempting to take her own life.

Gaca was at a bar, drinking with friends in Khayelitsha township, less than 40 kilometers outside Cape Town, South Africa, when a man tried to ask her out.

“I told the guy that no I’m a lesbian so I don’t date guys and then he said to me, ‘no I understand. I’ve got friends that are lesbians, that’s cool, I don’t have a problem with that.'”

Gaca says he was nice and she trusted him, and they left the bar to go to the home of one of his friends, and that is where his friendly exterior turned nasty.

“He said to me, ‘you know what? I hate lesbians and I’m about to show you that you are not a man, as you are treating yourself like a man,'” she told CNN.

“I tried to explain ‘I’m not a man. I never said I’m a man, I’m just a lesbian’. And he said, ‘I will show you that I am a man and I have more power than you.'”

Then he raped her, she says, as his friend watched.

Gaca said: “[Afterwards] I went to the railway train road, because I was suicidal at the time. I was lying on the tracks. I think the train was 100 meters away from where I was. Then some other guy came and grabbed me. The train passed. He called the police.”

It is called “corrective rape” – where men force themselves on lesbians, believing it will change their sexual orientation.

The extent of the problem is hard to know as South African police do not compile corrective rape statistics separately from other rape cases.

But human rights groups in the country — where gay rights are constitutionally protected — are outraged.

Cherith Sanger, of the Women’s Legal Centre in Cape Town, which provides legal support for rape victims who cannot afford good lawyers, said: “We believe that corrective rape warrants greater recognition on the basis that there are multiple grounds of discrimination.

“It’s not just about a woman being raped in terms of violence against women, which is bad enough, but it’s also got to do with sexual orientation so it’s another ground or level of unfair discrimination leveled against lesbians.”

It was not the first time Gaca had been raped. She says she ran away from her home village, in the rural Eastern Cape, after the first rape when she was 15 years old and too afraid to press charges.

She says running was easier than dealing with a community that didn’t accept lesbians.

She moved to Khayelitsha Township, a sprawling shanty town near Cape Town, Africa’s “gay capital” where she hoped to find tolerance.

Instead, she was confronted by more hate. “Being a lesbian in Khayelitsha is like you are being treated like an animal, like some kind of an alien or something,” she said.

While there are no official statistics on corrective rape, there have been enough publicly reported incidents to spark widespread alarm.

This time Gaca is fighting back.

New York-based Human Rights Watch recently conducted interviews in six of South Africa’s nine provinces and concluded: “Social attitudes towards homosexual, bisexual, and transgender people in South Africa have possibly hardened over the last two decades. The abuse they face on an everyday basis may be verbal, physical, or sexual — and may even result in murder.”

The group added: “This is a far cry from the promise of equality and non-discrimination on the basis of ‘sexual orientation’ contained in the country’s constitution.”

Most known victims, like Gaca, are poor and black and so are the perpetrators, prompting many to ask how a people who fought against discrimination during apartheid can today treat some of its most vulnerable in such a violent manner.

Siphokazi Mthathi, South African director at Human Rights Watch, said: “We’ve failed to make it understood that there is a price for rape. Sexism is still deeply embedded here. There is still a strong sense among men that they have power over women, women’s bodies and there’s also a strong sense that there’s not going to be consequences because most often there are no consequences.”

Interpol estimates that half of South African women will be raped in their lifetime. But corrective rape is not even recognized as a hate crime and rights groups say few victims report their cases to the police.

But Gaca did.

In many African countries being gay is illegal. In South Africa, those entrusted with enforcing the country’s “tolerant laws” now stand accused of re-traumatizing victims.

“When a woman is raped she is re-raped by the system and for me this is a big thing because it’s a serious violation of our constitution and the duties that are placed on the state in terms of what the state needs to do for survivors,” Sanger said.

CNN saw the treatment meted out to survivors firsthand with Gaca as she trekked from police station to police station trying to first find, and then get answers from, her investigating officer.

He was the third assigned to her case since she reported the attack in December 2009 and she eventually found him at the sexual offences unit in Bellville, a 30-minute drive from her home.

Despite the sensitive nature of her case, he met her in the wide, open office.

When Gaca asked why the police had failed to interview her alleged attacker’s friend, who witnessed the rape, another officer in the room told her: “I never take a statement from a suspect’s friend.”

He added: “The suspect’s friend is obviously going to say you are in a relationship with the suspect or that he didn’t see anything. The only statements that are important here are the ones from your friend, a neutral person or a neighbor. Not someone who was there watching while you were being damaged and he wasn’t helping.”

CNN requested an interview with the investigator and was referred to his superiors, before being granted an interview with South Africa’s Minister of Police, Nathi Mthethwa, who promised an investigation.

“I feel bad,” the minister said. “I feel bad about all these things. That is why I’m saying people who are responsible have a case to answer.”

No action has so far been taken against the police officers who not only treated Gaca with disdain but who she also had to push every step of the way to do their job.

When they let her alleged attacker go without taking DNA evidence, potentially crucial in proving his guilt, it was Gaca who insisted they re-arrest him.

After neglecting to question the eyewitness who was allegedly there throughout the incident, it was Gaca who forced the police to talk with him.

She says she sat in a car while they questioned him, as he leaned in through an open window to tell the police officer what he saw of the assault, forcing Gaca to once again relive the experience.

South Africa’s Victims’ Charter was drafted in 2004, granting seven fundamental rights to every victim of crime. Among them is the right to be treated with fairness and with respect to your dignity and privacy.

Gaca says these rights are ideals she has never experienced. Yet she’s determined to press on.

She said: “They always get away with it. I’m just pushing so that there will be a different story on my case. Maybe if this guy could be sentenced or something happens to him I think a lot of my friends will report their cases because some of the lesbians, they don’t report their cases, they don’t go to the police station because they know that it will just be a waste of time.”

Nearly two years after reporting her case, Gaca is still awaiting her day in court, still hoping for justice, and still fighting.”

By Nkepile Mabuse, CNN
updated 9:44 AM EST, Fri October 28, 2011

http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/27/world/wus-sa-rapes/index.html?hpt=hp_c1

K.D. Grace Blog: Interview-origins of the Erotic Literary Salon

K.D. Grace, A hopeful romantic. Blog: “Susana Mayer Talks About the Fabulous Erotic Literary Salon.

I had the privilege of reading for Susana Mayer’s Erotic Literary Salon on tour while I was in Las Vegas for Erotic Authors Association Conference. The experience was one of the highlights of the conference for me, and ever since, I’ve been dying to know more about the Salon and about the woman who made it happen. And now is my chance. I feel very honoured to have Susana Mayer as my guest on A Hopeful Romantic. Welcome, Susana!

KD: What would you most like people to know about Susana Mayer?

Susana: I have recently reinvented myself as a sexologist, receiving my MA in Public Health 2005, and Ph.D. in Human Sexuality 2009. I am not a writer of erotica, except for the occasional titillating emails I send to my beloved.

Presently, I am working on several projects; a unique anthology, ebook form (more info. can be found at the Salon’s website) and a non-fiction self-help ebook to better understand the complexity of libido, sex drive and sexual desire. Bibliotherapy is one of my passions.

K D: Tell us about the Erotic Literary Salon. How did it come about, and how has it evolved since its beginnings.

Susana: Creating the Erotic Literary Salon was a culmination of a lifetime love of erotica coupled with my dissertation investigations (searching for a catalyst for women’s desire to have sex). Conclusions drawn from the research and the sexual climate in the US led me to believe the time was right to mainstream erotica in Philadelphia.

The social messages women have been receiving did not allow “good girls” to admit to enjoying fantasies they consider pornographic. Based on media marketing, our society allows men the liberty of enjoying hard core material, whereas women are relegated to fantasies spurred on by soft core erotica.

Pornography usually conjures up negative judgements, and erotica is a term that is most often equated with sexual material for women. I must admit when I initially created the Salon, it was geared towards women, and I too used the term erotica so as not to offend my prospective attendees. The terms Literary and Salon were marketing tools to extend legitimacy to the event, since I realized porn or pornography would immediately offend people who equated this term with degradation.

Unfortunately, but ultimately most fortunately, the public space where the Salon was to be held could not discriminate against men. From the very onset the Salon attendance has been approximately equal among the sexes. Ages range from twenty-one (liquor law restrict minors from attending) to mid-nineties. Couples, singles, poly — all sexual orientations and an ethnic mix all attend the Salon.

This event has gone through several transitions since its inception. Initially the format followed most closely the concept of a true French Salon. Works were shared, discussed, and critiqued. It has now developed into performance, where the attendees expect to be entertained by the readings. Occasionally I have featured performers who incorporate music, song, or movement with their erotic presentation.

As the host of this event I try to keep the evening flexible, open to the possibilities of discussions, critiques and Q & A. The featured presenters, number of readers and attendee’s responses all impact how the evening will proceed.

It still surprises me when I hear attendees express their gratitude for having a venue to share their sensexual* writings sans censorship. Remarks like; “Susana is doing a very brave thing….It’s hard to overstate what a remarkable event you produce each month….Philly needs something like this,” remind me there are no other events of this kind presently in this area and few in the entire country.

People have confided in me how writing and sharing their words have helped them deal with a myriad of issues. Often this is the only occasion they have to hear how others express their sexuality. Exposure to these writings, especially journals and first person works, have given them the opportunity to reflect on their own sexuality. It can be of great comfort to know that there is such a variety of styles to creating sexual pleasure. For those who are troubled by sexual pleasure, the sharing of words may assuage their guilt.

The Salon has also given victims of sexual abuse an outlet to share their shame. By giving voice to their distress, in some instances the mere act of sharing has relieved them of the burden of shame. For others the control of the pen has allowed individuals to rewrite their sexual history, enabling them to cope more positively with their traumas.

Some people attend the Salon just to enjoy a night out with their friends, or it can be an unusual place to take their date. For an increasing core group of regulars, it is a community of like-minded people who enjoy sensexuala*.

The Salon is many things to many people, but one thing is a constant – each Salon is unique. I never know how the evening will progress, since each month the readings and featured presenters vary. Similar to my daily posts at the Salon’s website, I lend my voice to this event by offering news items with my sex positive spin. Individuals are given the opportunity to view a sexual newsworthy item from a different perspective. As a muse for this event I feel these items not only educate but can be used as research material for their writings.

The Salon also continues via the web between gatherings. Those unable to attend because of distance constraints are able to share their works on the site, while enjoying some of the readings from the Salon. A professor of English in India expressed his gratitude for having a community that would enjoy his writings and comment on them.

I believe the mainstreaming of sensexuala in Philadelphia is slowly becoming a reality. The first year the Salon averaged between 20-30 people. These numbers have climbed to 60-80 attendees any given month.

K D: The Salon sounds like such a wonderful community to be a part of, and I think it’s fabulous that there is a website where those outside of Philadelphia can connect up with that community. You must have so many amazing memories of the Salon, Susana, can you tell us, what was your most memorable experience of the Salon?

Susana: The Salon’s nonagenarian, Frances (she’s my Chosen Mom), read the best seller, “Go the FOK to Sleep.” Can you envision a 94 year old, white haired, 4’6” slim built, beyond wrinkled woman, armed with elocution lessons from grade school (sans microphone) reciting this adult story disguised as a children’s book to Salon attendees? She brought down the house. I have extended an offer to the author to attend in May to hear her once again read this piece. I hope to get permission to video tape and post it on youtube and my website. Can’t imagine him declining.

K D: Wow! I would have loved to be there for THAT reading! It must have been amazing. Susana, how do you see the future of the Erotic Literary Salon? What plans do you have for it?

Susana: I am considering adding several larger events, with the Salon as the foundation while including visual arts, music, dance for a spectacular evening of sensexuala. I’m also in the process of creating a Salon ebook press, not only to publish the Salon’s anthology, but also works of others. The Erotic Literary Salon is becoming an established brand, and I want to spread the word of sensexual writings as a tool for bibliotherapy.

*sensexuala/sensexual. A combination of (sensual & sexual) that does not carry the same judgmental values as those attributed to erotica and pornography. You get to enjoy the value of the piece, eliminating the need to discuss the sub-genre classifications.

K D: Thank you, Susana, for sharing with us. It’s been such a pleasure to interview you, and you’ve raised so many other wonderful questions that I’d love to pursue further that I hope you’ll come back again soon.

http://kdgrace.co.uk/blog/susana-mayer-talks-about-the-fabulous-erotic-literary-salon/

REALLY?; The Claim: Sleep apnea causes sexual dysfunction.

I can certainly think of many other factors that can disturb sleep and ultimately libido – pregnancy, crying infants, snoring partner, stress, noise, and the list goes on.

“THE FACTS

Sleep apnea causes disrupted breathing in the middle of the night for more than 12 million Americans. Fatigue, high blood pressure and weight gain are some of its more familiar symptoms.

But a growing body of research has also found that sleep apnea can be a drain on intimacy, causing erectile dysfunction in men and loss of libido in women.

Scientists suspect this may have to do with sex hormones like testosterone, which rise with sleep and fall when there is a lack of it. Because it causes intermittent waking and chronic sleep deprivation, apnea may directly drive down levels of these hormones, causing sexual dysfunction.

In the most recent study, published last month in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, scientists compared 80 women with obstructive sleep apnea between the ages of 28 and 64 with 240 women without the condition. They found that the apnea patients had significantly higher rates of sexual dysfunction. Their findings echoed those of earlier studies on women and apnea.

In a study in 2009, researchers looked for signs of sexual problems in 401 men who showed up at a clinic for suspected sleep apnea. Of those who received the diagnosis, about 70 percent also had erectile dysfunction, compared with 34 percent in those without sleep apnea.

But on the bright side, treatment can make a difference. Patients who undergo surgery to correct facial abnormalities that contribute to apnea see improvements in intimacy, and those who start using masks at night that administer continuous positive airway pressure also report benefits in their sexual relationships.

THE BOTTOM LINE

Sleep apnea can raise the risk of sexual dysfunction.”

By ANAHAD O’CONNOR

October 11, 2011

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9807E4D81439F932A25753C1A9679D8B63&ref=sex&pagewanted=print