If… ThenIf… Then: a collection of erotic romance stories, is my first single-author short story collection. It contains ten stories, eight of which were previously published elsewhere and two of which are new and exclusive to this book. It has been a true thrill to have published my first solo book, and I am so grateful to and thrilled to be working with its publisher, 1001 Nights Press.
If… Then is available now in both print and e-book formats at the following retailers:
Table of Contents
- Soft and Gray*
- Honey Changes Everything
- The Plant on the Mantel
- Relative Anonymity
- Shattered Angels*
- Apple Blossoms
- Rain Check
- No Such Thing
In these tales of sizzling erotic romance, deep affection and the warmth of familiarity underlie the erotic connection between longtime lovers. “The Plant on the Mantel” explores the unexpected implications of a generations-past affair on a young married couple. “Honey Changes Everything” finds Kim wondering how to lead her husband out of his state of despair upon losing his job; inspiration comes when breakfast in bed serves up more than just pancakes. And “If…” and “…Then” examine what happens when Valerie finds herself intensely attracted to someone other than her boyfriend—and what he does when he finds out.
With two original stories (“Soft and Gray” and “Shattered Angels”) joining the eight previously published tales in this collection, If…Then is a testament to the scorching eroticism that can so seamlessly subsist with long-term romance.
Around the Web
- See a video of my reading a scene from “If…” at a reading for the anthology in which it was originally published.
- I offered a kissing scene from “Soft and Gray” on my blog as part of the Snog for Sommer blog tour.
- An extract from “Honey Changes Everything” is included in my interview at The Weird, The Wild, & The Wicked, blog of author Siobhan Muir.
- An excerpt of “The Plant on the Mantel” is featured on the MFRW Author Blog as part of the Book Spotlight for If… Then
- I share an excerpt of “Shattered Angels” in an interview on the Romance Lives Forever blog.
- Find an additional excerpt of “Shattered Angels” on A Hopeful Romantic, blog of KD Grace.
- I read an abridged version of “Rain Check” at Rachel Kramer Bussel’s In The Flesh.
- I read from “…Then” at the Erotic Literary Salon in Philadelphia.
Brad appraised us with barely disguised enthusiasm. “Nice to meet you,” he said, giving us both a once-over as he sat down across from the chair Brooke dropped into. As soon as I was seated, he said, “So, how long have you two been together?”
“About five years.”
“Five years. Huh.” Brad sat back in his chair. Scott had obviously told him about us, though I didn’t know how much he’d said. I found out when Brad continued.
“So do you go both ways then, or just girls?” He addressed the question to both of us, and immediately I knew how to account for the look Scott had given him during the introductions.
“Is that a common icebreaker question of yours?” Brooke asked, her smile sedate.
“I just find you both hot,” Brad responded as though that somehow constituted an answer. “I’d do both of you in a heartbeat, so I was just wondering what the chances were of my getting to join you in a threesome tonight.” He winked, and I had little doubt the charm that emanated from his blue eyes had historically served him well in tempering a characteristic audacity.
“How interesting that you seem to assume that our relationship is non-monogamous, and also that there’s nothing inappropriate about intimating to both of us, in each other’s presence, that you want to fuck her respective partner. Do you usually tell people you want to fuck them when their partner is sitting right there?” Brooke’s tone was mild, and I knew she wasn’t speaking antagonistically but rather capitalizing on an opportunity to enlighten.
Brad looked confused, then considered for a moment. He shrugged. “I guess you’re right. Sorry.”
I smiled, nudging Brooke’s foot affectionately under the table. Brad’s comment wasn’t anything we hadn’t heard the likes of before, but that didn’t inoculate me from finding it annoying. One of the many things Brooke and I had in common was a keen interest in the demolition of sexual and gender stereotypes, superficial assumptions about lesbian relationships being high on the list.
It happened that Brooke and I did not define our partnership as strictly monogamous, though our respective play beyond the relationship had tapered considerably in the last few years. While both our multi-partnered and kinky proclivities had flared with gusto during the first couple years we were together, for the past few such outside interaction had maintained a contented trickle. Our kinky play as well was now practiced almost solely between the two of us, and as often as not, our sex was vanilla.
But that was all by conscious and considered choice, and the inclination, desire, and experience were still there for both of us if the opportunity arose. When Brooke caught my eye, there was a gleam in hers that I recognized. I held back a smile. The proposal I saw in them was something we hadn’t done in a while, probably a couple years if I remembered correctly. But that gleam told me she felt the opportunity had arisen.
With my look back, I answered.
Brooke smiled and turned back to Brad. “As it happens, the two of us have occasionally engaged in such a configuration. But you may not feel comfortable with the kind of things Ashley and I have been known to incorporate into our sex life.”
“Like what?” He was immediately interested again.
“Some things some people might consider a little rough. Bondage. Strap-ons.”
“Well, I guess I’m not surprised you use strap-ons,” he said with a lopsided grin, and I resisted the urge to roll my eyes. Brad, Brad, Brad, I thought. You could really use a little bit of a wake-up call—as well as perhaps a crash course in sensitivity.
Brooke was wearing a barely-hidden smirk that anyone who knew her would recognize. Brad, of course, didn’t know her, so his obliviousness continued as she spoke again. I sat with my glass in my hand, content, as was not uncommon, to let her do most of the talking. Despite the kinky and multi-partnered activities in my past, both with Brooke and before I met her, in both social and sexual settings I tended to be somewhat shy. Brooke and I switched, and I was fully capable of dominating her on occasion, but around groups and whenever more than the two of us had been involved, I was usually content to let Brooke lead the way.
“So we’d want anyone who joined us to be interested in those things too,” Brooke continued.
“Great!” Brad practically drooled into his beer, and I almost laughed out loud.
“You’re comfortable with that kind of thing?”
“Yeah, whatever you want!”
Brooke’s smile held just enough of an edge to let anyone listening know she was serious. “Don’t you think you might want to be careful giving someone you don’t even know that kind of carte blanche in a sexual setting?”
For the first time, Brad blushed, and I wondered what was really going on inside his head. I suspected what Brooke had in mind, and I suspected as well that Brad might not be as thrilled as he anticipated were he to be aware of it.
With that blush, for some reason, I wondered if I was wrong.
-from “Apple Blossoms” in If… Then