Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Heidi's Top 5 Kinks (and where to find them)

So a while back Violetta was agonizing over needing to write a blog but not having a topic to write on that wasn't miserably depressing/furiously angry. I graciously offered her a topic I'd been thinking of: Top 5 Kinks and Where To Find Them. And now I've finally decided to do my own. BUT I THOUGHT OF IT FIRST. And hey, maybe we could make a meme of it!

So here's my list. Ready to learn way more about my personal tastes than you ever wished you knew?

1. Non-con, Dub-con, and Consent Issues (Misc.)

For anyone who knows me, this will come as nooooooo surprise. Erotica that stretches (or breaks) the boundaries of consent is a kink for a lot of women, many of them survivors like me. There's a lot of reasons why rape turns us on so much, a lot of them centring around the extreme power dynamics or the fact that erotica allows us to safely explore the darkest most taboo parts of human sexuality. Violetta and I wrote a big catch-all post about it on the Storm Moon Press Blog here: Like It Or Not: Breaking and Bending Consent in Erotic Fiction.

For me, it's about the power exchange, but also about how it often incorporates my other kinks, like bondage, sado-masochism, and humiliation (featured below). So for example, a traditional yaoi scene where the bottom says "no" but means "yes" and ultimately ends up loving it (and his rapist) really isn't my personal cup of tea.

Where to find it:
If you're looking for an extreme experience, it's gotta be Anchored, by Rachel Haimowitz.
Warning: this book is NOT for the faint of heart, and even people who enjoy extreme BDSM often find it to be too much for them. It's violent, unflinching, psychologically intense... just how I like it.
If you'd like something that plays with consent in a less drastic way, try Like It Or Not, an anthology edited by SL Armstrong and April L'Orange, which advertises itself as "push[ing] the boundaries of consent without fully breaking them." (Also, I'm in this one! Yaaay!)

2. Comeplay
I don't know what it is about come that gets me going so much, but I love it. I love descriptions of it. I love reading about people eating it, swapping it, getting covered in it... okay you get the point. The only thing I don't particularly like is bukkake, because it has a tendency to feel somewhat impersonal. For me the appeal of come is all in the trust and affection and submissiveness that comes with allowing yourself to  overcome our taboos against bodily fluids for your sexual partner's pleasure.

Where to find it:
Try Collared, by Kari Gregg. This book has a lot going on: two simultaneous relationships, dystopian slavefic (but in a 'consensual' context here), chemically induced subby-sub sub that borders on seme/uke dynamics... but it's all finished off with a mind searingly hot scene with some of the best comeplay I've ever read. Seriously. Yowza.

3. Toys
Dildos and floggers and vibrators and restraints, oh my! I used to work in a sex shop, so I have a soft spot for the many delightful inventions we use to enhance sex. Weirdly, in this genre sex toys seem to mostly crop up in kinky BDSM stories, which suits me just fine of course, but it does seem a little bit strange that I've only very very rarely read stories of more vanilla relationships where toys are incorporated into the couple's sex life. It's not all cat-o-nine-tails and ball-gags, after all. Cock rings and blindfolds and even fuzzy handcuffs, as silly as they seem, are all things couples can use even if they don't know what a "safe word" is.

Where to find it:
Power Play: Resistance by Cat Grant and Rachel Haimowitz. Of course, having said that my recommendation is the super duper kinky bondage epic. But what can I say? Jonathan the dom in this story's relationship is a billionaire with a big well-stocked dungeon and Grant and Haimowitz are absolutely gleeful to take advantage of that fact. Unlike many stories where sex toys are touched on or used for quick kicks and then quickly forgotten in favour of more straight forward penis-in-orifice sex, here the various scenes revolve around the toys and they are absolutely essential to the dynamic of the scene and the overall plot. If you're into extreme kink, there's pretty much a little bit of something for everybody. For me, it's gotta be how it hits my very very favourite toy-related button: having something (vibrator, dildo, plug, etc.) inserted for a long period of time, only to be removed at the Dom's say-so. Oh yes please!

4. Dirty Talk
Maybe it's just the fact that I grew up in a household where "God damn" or "this sucks" or even "fart" (yes, really) were swear words and could get you a mouthful of dishsoap, but damn does reading dirty talk get my metaphorical motor running. Now of course, erotica is kind of dirty talk in and of itself, since dirty words kind of come with the territory, but there's something extra special about characters with their distinct voices and quirks and hang-ups doing the dirty talking. Dirty talk can be humiliating, can play into D/s, or can introduce tension and conflict or humour or even tenderness to a scene, and the best part is how personalized it is to the characters, adding another dimension beyond the choreography of how bodies fit together. (Not that there aren't other ways of doing this, of course, but dirty talk is my personal favourite.)

Where to find it:
Country Mouse by Amy Lane and Aleksandr Voinov. I could have picked several books to satisfy this particular kink, among them another of Voinov's offerings, the phone sex "episode" of his Dark Soul series, "Dark Whisper". However, Country Mouse stands out as a particular favourite because of how the dirty talk is perfectly incorporated into the rest of the story, an m/m that is pretty much a by-the-numbers rom com with a light D/s twist. The witty British-style banter and back-and-forth between the characters as they rub each other the wrong and right ways is really what carries the entire story, and the sex scenes are no exception, helping to incorporate the dirty stuff perfectly into the tone of the rest of the book. Hot and funny!

5. Humiliation
This is a weird kink for me because I'm terribly particular about it. There's a fine line between it being incredibly hot, and making me feel uncomfortable or overcome by second hand embarrassment. I don't know where the line is. I just know that when it's good, it's really, really good.

I like narratives where a submissive person willingly humiliates themselves or allows themselves to be humiliated out of obedience to another person. The way love and shame and pride can get all mixed up.
But I also love it in certain non-consensual contexts, where humiliation is used to make abuse that much more dehumanizing and shameful. Both of these narratives, though, I like from the perspective of the person being humiliated, not the one doing or directing the humiliating. If I can't see inside the humiliated person's head, or I'm not expected to sympathize with them, it can quickly veer into making me feel like I am a mean-spirited voyeur, or someone victimizing them.

Where to find it:
The Rosas of Spanish Harlem, by Johnny Miles. This book isn't for everyone: Miles comes from a gay erotica background, and the language he uses and the scenarios he depicts reflect that. This really, really isn't M/M according to genre conventions, and honestly as a romance it's not terribly convincing, but as a pornographic book, it's top fucking notch. Just so long as you're not squeamish. Hell, I'm not, and this book still had me blushing at a couple of points. The basic jist of the humiliation aspect is that the story follows an eighteen year old man still trying to figure out his sexuality and desperate for new experiences to satisfy his urges. There's forced feminization, anonymous sex, rough and rude tops, humiliating language... you get the idea. Check out the excerpt and see if it's your bag. Because if it is, it won't disappoint.

So what are your kinks? Got any recs, either that suit your own tastes or maybe you think I should give a read based on your new intimate knowledge of me? Drop me a comment!

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