May 072013
 
Eclair Bandersnatch mural at Center for Sex & Culture

Eclair Bandersnatch mural at Center for Sex & Culture

As some of you may know, I was born on May 9, and this year, I’m thrilled to tell you exactly what I want for my birthday!

The Center for Sex & Culture (CSC) in San Francisco, founded by Carol Queen and Robert Lawrence, is a non-profit archive, library and community space for preserving and sharing information and artifacts of sexual identity, sexual products, and sexual ideas. It is a VITAL resource for sex-positive communities. CSC accepts donations year round, but May 9 is a special day. May 9, 2013 is the first national Give OUT Day for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer community. Give OUT Day is a new national initiative that aims to mobilize thousands of individual donors on a single day across the country to give in support of the LGBTQ nonprofit community. It is a chance for LGBTQ groups large and small, to work across the wide range of issues and activities that matter to the LGBTQ community from sports to policy change, families to the arts. It is a chance for members of the LGBTQ community and our many allies to stand up and show our support for our community together on one day. In addition, The Horizon Foundation (The Bay Area’s LGBT Community Foundation) is sponsoring a challenge (The “Bay Area Leaderboard Prize”): It will award prize grants ($5,000, $2,500 and $1,000) to the top three small Bay Area non-profit organizations with the greatest number of unique donors at the end of Give OUT Day on Thursday, May 9. That’s right, it’s not about how much money they raise, it’s about how many people they can get to donate in one day, which means that any amount helps, even $5, but you’ve got to do it Thursday, May 9. Go to the Center for Sex and Culture Donation Page on Razoo and donate there (it’s important to use this link since they are tracking all the donations through it). You can even go beforehand and schedule your donation for May 9 by choosing “On a Giving Day” from the drop down menu. I am encouraging you to celebrate my birthday, support the important work of the Center and get more bang for your buck while you do it. Isn’t that appropriate?

Here is more information about The Center for Sex and Culture in Carol’s own words:

In 1994 my partner Robert and I (I’m author and sexologist Carol Queen, PhD) were visiting our friend Betty Dodson, sometimes known as “the Mother of Masturbation,” in her NY home. Why didn’t she bring her fabulous Bodysex workshop to the Bay Area? we asked. There wasn’t an appropriate venue there, she said. And then she said the words that begin the story of The Center for Sex & Culture: “You kids should start a place.”

Betty was right! Between us, we had connections in many sexuality-related communities. We both have doctorates in sexology; I worked at the legendary Good Vibrations and wrote for Spectator magazine, which had evolved from the old Berkeley Barb; I wrote stories and essays for zines and anthologies too, and was working on my first book, Exhibitionism for the Shy; we traveled around the US teaching, speaking, and meeting people from many sexual worlds, and were ourselves comfortable participants in many of these; and we’d both been directors at SF Sex Info. Together, we could relate and identify with much of the range of sexuality.

It took over 5 years of talking up the idea, but at last an angel donor helped us get over the fence: We corresponded with the IRS, got our non-profit status, and began looking for a space. Interns and donated materials came our way even before we had a room to house them. When we did get a place, we invited every sexually interested person over 18 to be part of it: as member, performer, teacher, patron, life-long learner. Academics and journalists began to visit to use our library and inspect our collections. Librarians descended on us, helping us to organize the many books and journals we’d amassed. (We believe we now have the largest publicly-accessibly sex library in the country — maybe the world!)

We host sex ed classes, and also cultural events. I deeply feel that, in the absence of good sex ed in the US, many of us learn about sex and develop our attitudes about sexuality via culture, and we want to participate fully in that discussion. We also support culture-making: through writing classes for sex workers; our award-winning Erotic Reading Circle; burlesque and dance classes; and our annual Nude Aid artmaking day. We also support community-based organizations, from BDSM/leather, to sex worker support groups, to the unique safer sex strategies of the SF Jacks. Our collections include Buzz Bense’s HIV/AIDS poster collection (these will hang in our gallery in Nov./Dec. 2013), materials from Pat Califia and Larry Townsend, a full run of On Our Backs magazine, Scarlot Harlot’s searchable database of sex worker interviews, and so much more.

We are all-volunteer, a labor of love and community for everyone involved. The next wave of core staff — a new librarian, a gallerist, archivists, and each year’s group of interns — came to us because of the cultural impacts of our collections; they are making them increasingly organized and accessible, and helping turn CSC into a venue for erotic artists who have few other places to exhibit their work.

We dream of publishing books, thus helping more non-Bay Area people join the conversation; and also want to put many of our events online, so we are even more a global community sex center than a local one. In the meantime, we hope you will visit us when you come to San Francisco! And thank you so very much for reading about our history and supporting us. Any donation helps us keep our doors open and take care of the materials our community has entrusted to us.

Wishing you pleasure and all the sex information you need!

—Carol, Robert, Dina, Marlene, Dorian, Anissa LibraryVixen, Tess, & the rest of your friends at the Center for Sex & Culture

Apr 032013
 

The Ultimate Guide to Kink

FINALISTS ANNOUNCED FOR 2012 NLA-I WRITING AWARDS

(Columbus, OH) — National Leather Association: International (NLA-I), a leading organization for
activists in the pansexual SM/leather/fetish community, announced today the finalists for its annual
writing awards. Named after activists and writers Geoff Mains, John Preston, Pauline Reage, Cynthia
Slater, and the groundbreaking organization Samois, they are awarded annually to recognize excellence
in writing and publishing about Leather, SM, bondage and fetishes.

The finalists for the Cynthia Slater Non-fiction Article Award are:

Civility Revisited by Kassie (Leatherati.com)

Rogue Leatherwomen by Leland Carina (Leatherati.com)

Stop, Drop and Role! Erotic Role Playing by Mollena Williams (The Ultimate Guide to Kink: BDSM, Role
Play and the Erotic Edge)

Digging in the Dirt – The Lure of Taboo Role Play by Mollena Williams (The Ultimate Guide to Kink:
BDSM, Role Play and the Erotic Edge)

On Collars And Closure and Owning Myself by Mollena Williams (The Perverted Negress)

The finalists for the Geoff Mains Non-fiction Book Award are:

Twenty-Five Years of Living in Leather: The National Leather Association, 1986-2011 by Steve Stein
(Adynaton Publishing)

The Ritual of Dominance & Submission: A Guide to High Protocol Dominance & Submission by David
English

Playing Well With Others: Your Field Guide to Discovering, Exploring and Navigating the Kink, Leather
and BDSM Communities by Lee Harrington and Mollena Williams (Greenery Press)

The Ultimate Guide to Kink by Tristan Taormino, ed. (Cleis Press)

Sexual Outsiders: Understanding BDSM Sexualities and Communities by David Ortmann, LCSW and
Richard Sprott, PhD

The finalists for the Pauline Reage Novel Award are:

The Masters of Falcon’s Fantasies by Cassidy Browning & Reggie Alexander (Siren Publishing)

Power Exchange by A. J. Rose (Voodoo Lily Press)

The Portrait by L. M. Somerton (Total-E-Bound)

Eve Portrait of Submission by Steve Maser (Pink Flamingo Publications)

Beyond the Edge by Elizabeth Lister (MLR Press)

A Forbidden Love by Lee Dorsey (Pink Flamingo Publications)

The finalists for the Samois Anthology Award are:

Bound by lust: Romantic stories of submission and sensuality, ed. Shanna Germaine (Cleis Press)

Cheeky spanking stories, ed. Rachel Kramer Bussel (Cleis Press)

Luscious: Stories of anal eroticism, ed. Alison Tyler (Cleis Press)

Whatever Lola Wants (and Other Wicked Tales), ed. Wes Royal (FDC Publication)

LIPSTICK LOVERS, ed. Elizabeth Coldwell (Xcite Books)

The finalists for the John Preston Short Story Award are:

THE GREENER GRASSES by M. Christian, from “STROKE THE FIRE: The Best ManLove Fiction of M.
Christian” (Renaissance E Books/Sizzler Editions)

Christmas Comes to Otters’ Gap by Jeff Mann, from “The Dirty Diner” (Bold Strokes Books)

Wild Like Honey by Angel Propps, from “Dangerous Curves” (Ravenous Romance)

Muriel by Annie Cox (Pink Flamingo Press)

“Aunt” Grace by I.G. Frederick & Patrick (Smashwords Edition)

The winners will be announced at the National Leather Association’s Annual General Meeting, which will
be held during Tribal Fire on May 3-5, 2013 in Oklahoma City, OK. For more information on the AGM or
Tribal Fire Please go to http://www.tribalfireokc.com/

For more information about the awards, please contact the award committee chair, pyxy, at
nlai.awards@gmail.com

Mar 222013
 


Heels on Wheels is a NYC-based queer punk art extravaganza touring from L.A to Vancouver March 22-April 7, 2013. The Roadshow combines multi-media, literary and performing arts, music, puppetry, participatory art, and fierce looks onstage to trouble the question: what is a femme? The show itself consists of five performers, local acts–and a dance party if you’re lucky.  The fearless artists rampage from hi-femme to femmedrogyny, dandy darling to ladybeast in a wild revue of visceral, poetic, performance, emotional escape plans in wild workout gear, dark whimsical puppetry, innovative intersectionality, and rocknroll you can sink your heels into!

Heels on Wheels emerges from an active anti-oppression, intersectional, liberatory standpoint boldy asserting: art can change our world. The people presenting art onstage and community organizing in their home city of Brooklyn all build power for traditionally-marginalized LGBTQ stories and people. The tour is working class-led and multi-racial, and includes cisgendered and trans folks, QPOC, mixed race folks, sex workers, immigrants: all fiercely political feminist queer artists whose work weaves punk herstories, survival strategies, and wild costuming into escape artistry. These are stories that do not have enough outlets on a regular basis and that’s one reason this tour is important!

The 2013 tour is the fourth, and features Damien Luxe, Adelaide Windsome, Heather Acs, The Lady Ms. Vagina Jenkins and Shomi Noise, with wrangler/visual artist Lizxnn Disaster. The Heels on Wheels Glitter Roadshow tours the US annually with a dazzling, diverse cabaret of performance art works and acts of resistance by queer folks of femme-inine spectrum genders.

Shomi Noise plays guitar and reads from her zine series “Building Up Emotional Muscle,” the story of her journey as a Bolivian immigrant navigating U.S. culture and finding herself through alternative music scenes. Damien Luxe invites the audience to participate in a satirical and sincere aerobics session for all bodies about dissociation and survival (complete with spandex and sparkle!). Heather Acs uses theatrical storytelling and scientific theory to explore the formation of stars and her working-class, Appalachian roots. Adelaide Windsome is a fabulist storyteller and puppeteer who queer-ifies fairy-tale structures into trans-narratives.The Lady Ms. Vagina Jenkins uses dance, movement, and performance drawing from traditional burlesque techniques to explore herstories of her working class, femme, sexworker ancestors, while interrogating the exotification of feminine bodies, race, and of exotic dance itself.

Heels on Wheels is a group of interdisciplinary performing artists who create performance-based cultural works and community events that have a feminist and radical agenda, are produced from sites of femme/inine-positive queer embodiment, and reveal the power in under-represented communities by including local acts, facilitating discussions on activist art, and touring social justice and anti-oppressive cultural works. By actively complicating what it looks like, sounds like, IS like to shamelessly and lovingly  represent femininity, dandyness, fey, femme and queer lady, this work confronts misogyny and sexism and uses cultural works to sabotage the status quo of gender, sexuality, and “feminine” appearance, replacing it with many visions and ideas of what thriving and surviving as femme folks can be.

Stillettos fly, gender justice prevails, and fairytales fracture as they travel through space, time, and stardust to the West Coast!

Connect with the Heels! Tour Calendar, Artist Bios, Glamour shots: http://www.heelsonwheelsroadshow.com // facebook.com/heelsonwheelsroadshow // @HOWroadshow

“The Heels on Wheels Roadshow is a glorious campaign to put femininity in the spotlight. I totally applaud and approve. It is a delicious combination touring glitterati and local sparkle that showcases some serious queer talent. Don’t let them pass you by!”
– Lois Weaver, Obie-Award Winning Performer, Lecturer Queen Mary University of London

Mar 112013
 

Down and Dirty Sex Secrets

My latest audio book Down and Dirty Sex Secrets: The New and Naughty Guide to Being Great in Bedis part of the The Bright List. Susie Bright has this to say about it:

I’m picky about sex advice, but this is one of the must-have’s.

Whether you’re happily vanilla or the type who’ll try anything, this book will probably give you a few ideas to make it even more satisfying and fun, either alone or with a partner (or two).

Read more: http://susiebright.blogs.com/the_bright_list/2013/02/get-down-and-dirty-with-tristan-taormino.html

If you’re a fan of audio books in generally, you definitely need to be following The Bright List, Susie’s blog on the topic is excellent.

 

Jan 242013
 

50ShadesofKinkcover

Even with its flaws, Fifty Shades of Grey has become a worldwide phenomenon that simply cannot be ignored. It has sparked broad discussion and exploration of BDSM among mainstream media and everyday folks. My book, The Ultimate Guide to Kink: BDSM, Role Play and the Erotic Edge came out at a perfect time last year just as the Fifty Shades craze was taking hold. But I realized that The Ultimate Guide to Kink is not necessarily geared for beginners, so I wanted to write a prequel to it. That book was just released by Cleis Press: 50 Shades of Kink: An Introduction to BDSM. It’s an e-book available for the Kindle and the Nook. It’s the perfect book for anyone who’s been inspired by Fifty Shades of Grey, is curious about kink, wants more information, or is just beginning to explore it. 50 Shades of Kink is a practical guide that moves beyond the fantasy and gives practical advice and techniques based on real world experience. You’ll learn techniques and creative ideas for bondage, spanking, flogging, sensation play, and rough sex and how to eroticize power, cultivate deeper connections and incorporate kink into your sex life.

Jan 162013
 

R10x.header

Over the holidays, Reid Mihalko of ReidAboutSex.com launched an amazing new program, Relationship 10x. When it comes to improving your relationships and transforming your love life, there is so much hype out there these days, and it gets frustrating to wade through the noise to get to the gold nuggets. That’s why I’m so pleased to share Reid’s information with you.

Reid Mihalko (who you may remember from his appearance on my show Sex Out Loud) is down-to-earth, practical, and funny. And the information he’s sharing does make a powerful difference in relationships. He gets down to the nitty-gritty fast, and shows us fundamental changes we can make to help our partners feel loved, honored and cherished. Why? So they (and we) feel more connected and intimate, which means we all have more bandwidth and joy to support each other.

Reid has produced four free videos with tips and information to help improve your relationship communication and give you a sample of the Relationship 10x program. Check out all 4 of them below!

How to stop fighting like Cats and Dogs and start loving. Watch this video to find out if you’re a Cat or a Dog when it comes to romance…and how this knowledge can improve your dynamic.

Saying What You’ve Haven’t Been Saying. Sharing what you’re really feeling with your loved ones creates intimacy like nothing else. It also builds/rebuilds trust. Reid’s approach makes these conversations so much easier, that he give us a formula on how to speak up when it’s difficult!

Self-Expression Trumps Attraction. Ever wished it wasn’t so long until “til death do us part”? Feel like your relationship ran out of steam a while ago, and only a defibrillator would bring it back to life? It’s time to stop struggling trying to be something we’re not, and start being self-expressed. When you share your TRUE self, the people who love YOUR particular quirks and talents will be drawn to the real you. Naturally!

What Your Lover’s Body And A Wineglass Have In Common.  How do you listen to your partner’s body? Do you want to have more warm, magical, (and hot) touch in your life? Do you want your partner’s body to feel safe, open and alive under your hands? And to feel that open, deep passion yourself? Reid says that improving your ability to listen to your partner’s body and hear it is the best advice he can give you for how to transform your sexual and sensuality skillsets.

If you enjoyed those videos, you will love the entire Relationship 10x program. Relationship10x is a daily program you engage with for 6 weeks. This gives you and your partner time to get under the hood of your relationship, to recognize and break bad habits and anchor new, powerful ones in place. You’ll create new patterns of relating around communication, sex and affection and relationship IQ.

And it won’t take a lifetime. It can happen in as little as 10-minutes a day. Really.

In Relationship10x Reid will guide you in upgrading and updating your relationship skills so you can eliminate the conflicts and stress of trying to make old approaches work in a modern world. You and your loved ones deserve it!

Can you afford to let your relationships flounder one more day? Make 2013 the year you make your relationship 10X better. 

Jan 022013
 

condom

A new study in Australia shows the risk of contracting HIV while engaged in the practice of topping or taking the “insertive role” in sex. This practice is thought by many to be a lower risk activity when engaging in unprotected sex, but the research is indicating otherwise. How is the virus being transmitted from the receiver to the person on top?

During anal sex, HIV can be transmitted to the insertive partner when a bodily fluid containing HIV from the receptive partner, such as anal mucus, enters the body of the insertive partner. This can occur through the foreskin and surrounding areas, the eye of the penis to the urethra (also a mucous membrane), or through tiny (often invisible) breaks in the skin of the penis.

Anal mucus is increasingly being mentioned in Australian campaigns as the infectious body fluid potentially infecting the insertive partner during unprotected anal intercourse.

This is a significant piece of the puzzle which reminds us about how HIV can be transmitted during unprotected anal intercourse. I recommend everyone read it to stay informed about transmission and share it with your lovers, partners, and friends. Full article here: It’s Time To Talk Top: The Risk Of Insertive, Unprotected Anal Sex

 

Nov 282012
 

The Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy published a study on anal sex last month that was ignored by most folks in the media – except for Debby Herbenick at Salon!

In an incredibly short period of time, anal sex has become a common part of Americans’ sex lives. As of the 1990s, only about one-quarter to one-third of young women and men in the U.S. had tried anal sex at least once. Less than 20 years later, my research team’s 2009 National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior found that as many as 40-45 percent of women and men in some age groups had tried anal sex. With its rising prevalence, I felt it was important to devote a chapter of my first book, “Because It Feels Good,” to anal health and pleasure — only to find that a magazine editor wouldn’t review it because the topic of anal sex was “not in the best interest of our readership.” Even though nearly half of American women in some age groups have done it! She added, “In the correct circles, I personally will be suggesting the book to those with whom I can share such a resource.”

Hmm. The correct circles. Which ones would those be?

Read the whole article here: http://www.salon.com/2012/10/05/anal_sex_sciences_last_taboo/

Nov 212012
 


Smitten Kitten is doing it big this year with multiple ways to save cash and bring some new vibes into your life!

**EARLY BIRDS IN-STORE: 7:00am-11:00am
Everything in the store is 10% off
Spend $20 and get a FREE vibrator (valued at $50!)
They’ll have hot coffee and fresh donuts for you and your friends.

**SLEEPY TURKEYS ONLINE: All day sale
10% entire online store
Spend $50 and get a FREE vibrator (valued at $50!)
+ FREE shipping!

Folks can pre-shop now at:  www.smittenkittenonline.com
And, check out the new live educator feature. Chat up all your shopping questions with one of our sex educators while you browse!