Rachel Kramer Bussel is Over to Visit!

Hi everyone! Today is a special day—it’s the release day for Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 2…a fantastic anthology edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel! I have been fortunate to work with Rachel on a number of occasions, which is why I couldn’t be happier to have her over for an exclusive interview today. Yes!

Since I’ve long admired Rachel’s work in both editing and writing, I had a lot of fun picking her brain on the Best Women’s Erotica of the Year series and much, much more. The anthology itself is bound to be another hit, so you’ll definitely want to grab your copy on Amazon in either print or ebook form. You can also find out more about it on the Best Women’s Erotica of the Year site. And, bonus, we’ll be doing a reading to celebrate its release on January 31, 2017 at Skylight Books in L.A. I’ll be reading an excerpt from my story in BWE Volume 1 alongside some wonderful authors with stories in Volume 2—you won’t want to miss that, so be sure to check out the events page and mark your calendars!

For now, I hope you enjoy all the details I got from Rachel about her work, her books, and her style. I know I did!

Welcome Rachel! I’m so excited to have you here today, and to get to ask you a bunch of questions about your work. Thank you for joining me! I hope it’s okay—I’m going to dive right in with my first question…

What would you say is the main thing you look for when selecting stories for an anthology?

Variety. I consider each story individually and gravitate toward the ones that grab me, the ones that are different from others I’ve read, that I think my readers will like, and then I make sure they all work together to create a diverse, varied whole. Something I tell my erotica writing students is that I want to know why the people in the story are having sex, and why now. I want to feel that immediacy and urgency in every story. I never want to feel like the characters are just going through the motions; I want to get to know them, not just their sexual desires, but them as people and how their history informs their sexuality.

So it’s tough to point to any one aspect, but I like having a mix of settings, eras, writing styles and of course a wide range of characters when it comes to sexuality, sexual orientation, race, age, country of origin, location (I appreciate stories that aren’t all set in big cities, and where the action doesn’t always take place in a bedroom) etc. I also look for different points of views and tenses, because I think that makes for a more pleasant reading experience. So that’s a lot to balance and not something I can always control for as an editor, but I try my best. I’m planning a slight twist for the call for submissions for Volume 4, which I’ll be posting in 2017, which will have some sub-themes that I think could make for really interesting plotlines.

Ooh, that’s interesting. I can’t wait to hear more on that! Speaking of…now that you are editor of the Best Women’s Erotica of the Year series, what would you say is different about working on this series than other anthologies? How?

Knowing that I have several volumes behind me and right now two more ahead of me (Volumes 3 and 4) is a wonderful gift, because I know that each time I have the opportunity to reach more readers and more writers from around the world. Picking up a series that’s been edited incredibly well by two previous editors is a challenge but one I am honored to get to play a role in. I try to build a sense of community among all the BWE authors and also try to keep the books different so that readers who enjoyed one will also enjoy the others and never be bored. In general, I try to push myself with each anthology I edit to find new ways of reaching audiences and seeking out new writers, and I’ve been doing my best to do that with this series. I hope to publish work by authors from countries that haven’t previously been represented going forward. Otherwise, as an editor I often have to simply wait and see what kinds of stories arrive in my inbox and that helps dictate what kind of tone each anthology will have. I also can incorporate feedback from readers into how I shape and craft future volumes, which I can’t do with one-off anthologies.

You know, I love reading your stories in the anthologies you’ve curated. Do you usually write your piece at the time of posting the call, or after you see the selection of stories you have for the anthology?

In the past, I’ve done it both ways. Sometimes if I found I didn’t get a certain type of element, I would try to fill it in. Or in the case of Come Again: Sex Toy Erotica, where I wanted each story’s sex toy to be different, I wrote about a set of metal claws, since they have always fascinated me and nobody else had covered it. One thing I’ve changed with the Best Women’s Erotica of the Year series I’m editing is in order to make room for more authors’ voices, I’ve kept each book limited to those who weren’t published in the previous BWE of the Year books, which includes me, so Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 2 is the first anthology I’ve edited that doesn’t include my own fiction. I think that’s fitting and am very proud to be moving into more of a curatorial role. Any plotlines and scenarios I had wanted to include in a given volume but didn’t get to due to space or lack of story submissions, I try to make up for in the next volume.

That’s a clever approach. What is your favorite step or part of being an editor? Why?

For me the best part of being an editor is getting to work with hundreds of authors from around the world, all of whom are writing the kinds of pieces I could sit in front of my computer for thousands of hours and never come up with. I especially publishing writing by authors who are new to the genre because that’s where I was not that long ago and an editor taking a chance on my work was such a wonderful opportunity and I’m thrilled to be able to pay that forward.

And what about the hardest part?

Sending rejections. When I finally quit editing anthologies, it will be a huge relief to no longer have to send rejection letters, which, even though they are part of the job, always make me feel like a horrible monstrous person. I know I’m not and I know by the numbers, there simply isn’t any way to include all the stories that are submitted to any given anthology even if I loved each and every one, but it still is an awful feeling because I know everyone worked diligently on their stories. I’m heartened though by the fact that a writer who believes in their work will take a rejection as an opportunity to find another home for their words and so far I’ve been lucky enough to always have a new anthology to edit. I try to point to a new call for submissions of mine when I do send rejections to encourage authors to keep submitting.

That’s fair. And authors should keep submitting, too—rejection is just part of the deal. I’m curious about another thing I imagine is an editor woe: what is your least favorite grammatical error (or the most annoying one to you) to catch and/or fix in stories? Has this changed for you over time, aka are there grammatical things that have stopped “bugging” you over the years? 

Probably the most challenging to fix is when the tense changes throughout the story. I’ve done it so I know how annoying it is to redo, and I also know that sometimes an author can see a story existing in multiple tenses, and eventually you just have to pick one.

Eek. I’ve done that myself in the past! Okay, another question—what is your most favorite story that you’ve put in an anthology, of all time? (Or, if you’d rather not specify a story, how about a theme or subject that came up in an anthology?)

It’s hard to say because I have so many to choose from but I especially love stories that surprise me. One story I have read at numerous readings and truly adore for its ingenuity is “Remote Control” by Logan Zachary from The Big Book of Orgasms. It’s the perfect combination of sexy and funny and makes any reader wonder just what they would do if they were handed the title object. That’s a lot to do in less than 1,200 words but he somehow did it. You can listen to it on The Kiss Me Quick’s Podcast, read by Rose Caraway, who narrated the audiobook. I also have a soft spot for “Daddy’s Girl” by Teresa Noelle Roberts in Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica. It’s such a vivid and hot story about role-playing, and what I especially love is that it makes it perfectly clear that they are indeed engaging in beloved roles that turn them on. She manages to mix the fantasy and reality elements of the story so it doesn’t lose any of its hotness but makes that delineation clear. I’d love to publish more edgy stories like that in my anthologies.

One of the things I’ve long admired about you is your desire to include as many new authors as possible in your anthologies. (Heck, this is how my first published piece, “The Flogger,” happened in The Big Book of Orgasms, and I can’t say thank you enough!) What is something you’re looking for in a new author for future anthologies?

Mainly I’m just looking for fresh ideas or new insights into sexual desire, passion, love and lust, and how those all fit in with the rest of our lives and what’s going on in the world. There really isn’t any one specific thing, though I am always pleased when authors approach a subject, even if it’s one that’s been written about plenty, and finds a way to make it feel as if it’s brand new. I’m often far more interested in the psychological twists and turns sex can take than a recitation of the physical machinations of sex, so that’s something I’m always interested in. Beyond that, I just look for pieces I think my readers will marvel over and want to reread again and again.

That’s a good plan. Now, when you’re writing, do you find that your editor side kicks in and causes you to edit while you draft? Or, are you able to separate your two roles and write freely before you edit?

Usually if my editor side kicks in when I’m writing, it’s a sign that I’m approaching a given piece incorrectly. I do my best to let go and simply write until I feel I’m at a natural stopping point, and then go back and edit later.

Smart. Okay, here’s an off the cuff one: you are given the choice of editing or writing, for the rest of your life. Only one. Which do you choose? Why?

I’d have to say writer because I started writing (outside of erotica) far before I ever considered being an editor. But I would certainly miss the joy of working with other writers if I couldn’t do it anymore.

We would miss that, too! I wonder…some writers revisit themes, or particular scenes that keep coming back in their work. Do you have such a repeated element in yours (that you recognize)?

I’m probably the opposite in that the part of writing I like the most is creating a new piece, whether that’s fiction or non-fiction.

So then, would you ever write a sequel to one of your stories, and if so, which one? Why would you like to bring it back?

I’ve long wanted to write a sequel to my oral sex restaurant story “Secret Service” from Best Women’s Erotica 2010 edited by Violet Blue, looking at the fellatio equivalent to my cunnilingus restaurant. I think it would be a fun twist on a story that already took its origin from a real-life Brooklyn restaurant that sold cocaine in the back.

Sexy. I am looking forward to this sequel! But let’s say you weren’t in the word industry. What would your next career be?

Maybe a bingo caller, because I love playing bingo, but I’m not sure if that would ruin the fun for me.

I like it. That’s fun. 🙂 Which leads to a fun last question…you can go anywhere, free of charge, for as long as you want. What would be the most romantic and/or dream place for you to write?

I love hotels, so probably any really luxurious hotel where I could get anything I needed at the press of a button.

Fabulous. Thank you so much for being here, Rachel!

And there you have it! A peek inside the brilliant mind of Rachel Kramer Bussel. Don’t forget to pick up your copy of Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 2 on Amazon, and we hope to see you at the reading on January 31st!

A giant thank you to Rachel for joining me today!

Cover of The Assignment by Jade A. Waters

It’s Nearly Release Day—And Deal Time!

It’s almost here! Tomorrow is the official release day of my debut novel, The Assignment—and I couldn’t be more thrilled!

As you may have cCover of The Assignment by Jade A. Watersaught on, there have been a lot of events leading up to today. The blog tour kicked off about a week ago, and it will continue for almost two weeks more. Yes! You’ll have plenty of opportunities to find out about the book through guest posts, behind-the-scenes reveals, interviews, and other ditties along the way. Tomorrow, in fact, I’m scheduled to be stopping at not one but THREE fabulous sites! That’s right, you’ll be able to find a smokin’ hot excerpt of The Assignment at Rachel Kramer Bussel’s Lusty Lady blog, a guest post I’ve written about BDSM over at Underneath the covers, and also a review of The Assignment at Books Reviews Etc. Whoa! Will that be triple the fun, or what?

Speaking of extra fun…in celebration of the release of The Assignment, I’m offering a special deal. Anyone who purchases my debut novel within the first three days it’s available (so by 11:59 pm EST December 15, 2016), will get a free, never before published short story of mine. Hurray! I’m super excited to share it with you, too…all you need to do to get your hands on it is…

1. Buy your copy of The Assignment (by the above deadline) and

2. Email a copy of your receipt to me at jade@jadeawaters.com.

It’s that easy! You can find the book at the following locations:

Amazon US     Amazon UK      Barnes & Noble      Google Play      iBooks      Kobo

Once you grab it, don’t forget to email me your receipt. I’ll be sending the story out to you by the end of the week.

Have you already pre-ordered the book? You are awesome—and it’s no problem. Just email along your receipt showing you’ve made the purchase, and ta-da! This short story will be available to you, too. It’s a thank you for your support!

In the meantime, please keep an eye on the Official Tour Post so you can follow along and check out all the stops. Don’t forget to visit past stops, either—my favorite so far was a super fun interview with Rose Caraway (which included a sexy snippet read by me in-studio!). Good times! But there’s definitely more to come…you won’t want to miss a thing. 🙂

For now, thank you so much for joining me on this fantastic journey, and in advance for picking up your copy of The Assignment.

Happy reading to all!

XX,
Jade

PS Want my “autograph” for your ebook? Be sure to request one on Authorgraph if you do! 🙂

Cover of The Assignment by Jade A. Waters

The Assignment Blog Tour Begins—In an Interview with Rose Caraway!

Oh my goodness, everyone, I’m so excited. Today it begins—the official blog tour for The Assignment! Yessss! I could not be more thrilled not only for this tour to start, but for The Assignment to be in your hands in eight short days when it’s released on December 12th. Woo hoo!

And, on top of that, I am over the moon to get to launch the tour in such a marvelous way today: with one of my favorite people, the incredible Rose Caraway!Cover of The Assignment by Jade A. Waters

You may recall Rose Caraway interviewing me on The Sexy Librarian’s Podcast before, and she’s even narrated some of my short stories…but now, she’s paid me the honor of launching the tour with an interview in her studio! We shared such a fun time at her place yesterday, starting with Rose surprising me with treats and wine to celebrate the book’s forthcoming release—such a sweetheart!—and then moving us into our in-studio interview. Rose asked all sorts of questions about The Assignment and the Lessons in Control series as a whole, and I am so glad you get to listen in on it. Plus, Rose’s stop is extra special because she gave me the opportunity to record a sexy snippet of The Assignment, right there in-studio! That’s right—you’ll get to hear our interview as well as me reading a scene from the book. I hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed participating!

To listen, please hop on over to The Sexy Librarian’s Podcast. And, as we continue the tour through December 23rd, filled with back info and details on the book, interviews, guest posts, excerpts, reviews, and giveaways, please keep checking back to the Official Tour Page to find each stop along the way.

For now, enjoy stop one—an interview between the fabulous Rose Caraway and me about The Assignment! I hope you enjoy it!

Be sure to pick up your copy of The Assignment, available for pre-order at…

Amazon US     Amazon UK      Barnes & Noble      Google Play      iBooks      Kobo

Happy reading!

XX,

Jade

Cover of The Assignment by Jade A. Waters

The Assignment Blog Tour!

***UPDATED: All tour stops noted below, and will be updated as the dates arrive with links and specifics! Thanks for joining the fun!***

Hi everyone!

It’s a super exciting time over here, because I’m gearing up for the release of The Assignment in less than three weeks and putting all the final wheels into motion for the big day on December 12th. Woo hoo! I can’t tell you how over the moon I am for my debut novel—the first installment in the Lessons in Control series—to be coming into your hands in such a short amount of time. Yesssss!Cover of The Assignment by Jade A. Waters

That’s why today, I’m even more pumped to tell you about The Assignment Blog Tour! It’s a huge event filled with interviews, excerpts, reviews, giveaways, and a bunch of posts connected to and inspired by the book. Extra fun is that this will be a two prong tour, part of which I’m fortunate to have had arranged via Carina Press and Kismet Tours (thanks, guys!) and the other part of which will be hosted by some fabulous author friends of mine.

All right, all right. You probably want to know where to go when it’s on, right? Then consider this your official Blog Tour post, where you can come back throughout the duration of the tour (and heck, even after, if you’d like) to be able to catch all the stops along the way…

Thanks so much in advance for joining the fun!

The Assignment Official Blog Tour Schedule:

Sunday, December 4th: Interview and Sexy Snippet read over at The Sexy Librarian’s Blog-Cast with Rose Caraway
Monday, December 5th: Guest Post and Giveaway at The Book Cellar
Monday, December 12th: Release day blitz with an excerpt at Rachel Kramer Bussel‘s and a review at Alpha Book Club!
Tuesday, December 13th: Guest Post and Giveaway at Bewitched Bookworms
Wednesday, December 14th: Bewitched Bookworms, Take Two—Guest Post and Giveaway!
Thursday, December 15th: Guest Post with Horny Geek Girl and home (here) for Blissemas
Friday, December 16th: A Few Thoughts On Asking For What You Want in Bed at Carina Press, and The Assignment visits Parajunkee, Book Briefs and Alpha Book Club with Guest Posts!
Saturday, December 17th: Interview at Kink Praxis
Sunday, December 18th: Guest Post with F. Leonora Solomon
Monday, December 19th: Guest Post at The Brit Babes
Tuesday, December 20th: Interview with Malin James
Wednesday, December 21st: Exclusive Excerpt on Sugarbutch via Sinclair Sexsmith
Thursday, December 22nd: I Write Smutty Things with A. M. Hartnett
Friday, December 23rd: Final stop right here!

The Assignment Blog Tour is brought to you December 5th through 16th by Kismet Tours…

the-assigment-blog-tour

And on the remainder of the tour by wonderful author pals Rose Caraway, Rachel Kramer Bussel, Xan West, Horny Geek Girl, F. Leonora Solomon, the Brit Babes, Malin James, Sinclair Sexsmith, and A. M. Hartnett! A giant thank you to all involved!

Can’t wait to see you lovely readers on the tour. And be sure to pick up your copy of The Assignment, available at…

Amazon US     Amazon UK      Barnes & Noble      Google Play      iBooks      Kobo

Happy reading to all!

XX,
Jade

All three covers of Jade A. Waters's Lessons in Control series!

The Discipline and The Reward — Cover Reveals!

Hello everyone!

As you may know, I’ve been working away at the Lessons in Control series, which launches with The Assignment on December 12th. Wee! I’m so damn excited! The series is releasing not only soon but at rapid fire speed, with book 2, The Discipline, out in March ’17 and book 3, The Reward, out not all that much later—in June! Woo hoo!

I’m currently working on the third book to turn into my editor at the end of the year, but while that’s in motion, all sorts of thrilling things have been happening on the sidelines. Are you ready for the biggest?

I received these ridiculously sexy covers for book 2 and 3!

the-discipline_jadeawaters-small

thereward_jadeawaterssmall

*Faints.*

Wow. I don’t know about you, but I seriously swooned when I saw all three of these together. In fact, why don’t I just go ahead and show you all three in a row, too:

lessons-in-control-covers

OMG. OMG. Aren’t they to die for? Carina Press seriously knocked it out of the park here. I’m so happy!

All right… *Breathes x 1,000* What else, what else? Well, besides deciding that the triple threat image above is going to need to get framed and hung on the dining room wall I keep rambling on about being too bare, I’ve also been working on a blog tour for The Assignment. Yay! I’m getting pumped to share details about this soon because I’ve got a ton of awesome, lovely people involved, but for now I’ll just say the party kicks off December 4th and you won’t want to miss it. It’s going to be so fun, with lots of exclusives, giveaways, interviews, info about the book and whole series, and more! I can’t wait!

In the meantime, you can find both The Assignment and The Discipline available for pre-order for your Kindle, and the first book at a few other sources, too (find all of them here). I hope you’ll please add both books to your shelves on Booklikes (you can find The Assignment here and The Discipline here), and please mark The Assignment as “Want to Read” on Goodreads.

I’d also like to ask that if you haven’t yet signed up for my newsletter, please do. Newsletter subscribers are the first to hear about news and special events, and will get various exclusives during the course of the Lessons in Control series. The first? An absolutely free preview of the first chapter of The Assignment BEFORE it’s released—but you can only have access if you sign up. I hope you do!

Finally, I wanted to let you in on a reading I have booked down in L.A. on January 31, 2017, hosted by the lovely Rachel Kramer Bussel at Skylight Books in honor of the Best Women’s Erotica of the Year series. There, I’ll be reading with the fabulous Melina Greenport, Jocelyn Bringas, and Ms. Bussel herself. You can find more info right here. I’ll be reading a snippet of “Ophelia the Second,” which was included in Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 1, and I’ll have some swag for The Assignment to give you there, too. Hurray! We hope you’ll come out and say hi!

All right, that’s it for now, folks. Thanks for reading and I look forward to sharing more soon!

XX,
Jade

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Jade Aurora Waters

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