Monthly Archives: December 2008

Love, Sex, Men, Women, Vampires

I got this interesting email from my pal Cap’n Crusty yesterday:

Just what is it that (some) women find so alluring about vampires?  Come on, these are blood-sucking corpses who, if they don’t kill their victims right off, will either enslave a them or, if they’re “lucky”, turn them into a similar creature, doomed to wander the night forever, cower in a coffin from the daylight, and even worse, condemn one to an eternity without garlic!!!!!!

Good question.

My answer? It’s all about forbidden love. 

We are complex creatures and nothing speaks to that so much as our predilections and varying appetites when it comes to sex. I learned a lot during my years of teaching erotic writing workshops for women (and only one for men). The study of how men differ from women–in all ways–is mandatory for any fiction writer, especially when it comes to bedroom scenes.

In part, what I learned from leading those weekend workshops was this: Women want to have deeply significant sex with the man they love in dangerous, public places, and men want to have a joyful romp with no strings attached in their own beds.

Power is an aphrodisiac to women. So is the forbidden. Vampirism is both. Sometimes women just succumb to the passion, eschewing the consequences, and therein lies the attraction.

We go to bed at night, open a book and leap into the skin of the characters we’re reading about, living vicariously through their mistakes and missteps, wishing we could be them, glad we’re not. What young girl wouldn’t want the singular attentions of a thousand-year-old, worldly man, no matter how dangerous? Don’t we all remember wanting to date the cool guy at school, especially if he was a few years older?  Well, take that to the extreme. Very cool (cold, actually), much older. Very flattering.

It’s love. It’s sex. It’s turn-ons. There is no logic here. You don’t have to agree with it to make it work in a book.

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Filed under relationships, Writing

End of Year Rituals

The tree is up. Presents are wrapped.  Christmas dinner menu is planned. This is the time I enjoy the holidays.

I also love my end-of-year rituals.

I have a few New Year’s Day rituals, mostly having to do with file folders and paperwork.  I clean out the filing cabinet, label new empty folders, anticipate a fresh, good year. I put all the old stuff in a box designated for the attic, as soon as the taxes are filed. I finish entering all the financial crap into the computer so I can print out the pertinent stuff for the tax preparer.  (I hate doing that throughout the year, but I love doing it at the end of the year.)  

I learned last year the value of putting a “name” to my year. 2008 was the year of Hesed, the Hebrew word for Lovingkindness. Naming it helps to make it so, or so I believe. So I witnessed. I don’t have a name for 2009 yet; it’s not New Year’s. But I will.

The ritual I have before me right now is returning things I’ve borrowed and not returned throughout the year. Books, CDs, movies, tools, patterns, whatever. I go through drawers and shelves and collect and return. Most things I just pop into envelopes and take to the post office when the rush is over. When possible, I would always prefer to deliver these things personally (after all, they were loaned to me personally); it’s an opportunity to get face-to-face during the holidays.  But that isn’t always possible, especially with the current stormy weather.  So I pop ’em in the mail with a note of thanks, and an invitation to get to gether soon after the first of the year.

I also take this time to ask for things back that I’ve loaned to others. I don’t loan very much, so that isn’t a big deal. When I taught classes I was pretty liberal with loaning my resource books to students, and that’s when I began this program of asking for loaned things to be returned.  Some are better at returning things than others. I want to be one of the ones who always returns things, even if it takes me to the end of the year to do it.

When I think of New Year’s, I think of a clean slate. It’s good to get clean in bookshelf, file folders and relationships.

Is there anything I need to say to anybody? An apology? A thank you? An “I Love You”, just in case I’ll never see them again? Then I best do that without delay.

The New Year.

A clean slate.


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Filed under relationships, The Holidays

We All Stand Together

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all the world leaders could make music together like this?


Filed under Beauty, peace, Possibilities, Social Consciousness, Spirituality, Uncategorized

A Kiss for William Shatner’s Cheek

The title of this blog is the result of a dream. I woke up and knew that I had just dreamed the best book title ever thought up by mankind. I turned on the nightstand light, wrote it down and went back to sleep believing that I was on the verge of being rich and famous, because I had the best book title ever. When I woke up in the morning, I couldn’t wait to read what I had written and it was… as you can see…

We won’t go into the number of times (per month) that I dream about William Shatner, nor how many decades that has been going on. It always amazes me. And I have no idea why. The last dream in which he had a starring role (usually, he’s just lurking somewhere in the background) he was a rodeo clown and we were at a betting track. I was hiding in the ladies’ room trying to ditch him, and every time I peeked out the door, there he was, practicing his rope tricks.

Please don’t try to psychoanalyze me by this.

But next Monday night is the series finale for Boston Legal and my–hmmm… not grief, more like bitchiness–over that is ameliorated only by the fact that he debuted his new interview show, Shatner’s Raw Nerve, last night on the Biography Channel. He interviewed both Valerie Bertinelli and Tim Allen, and I thought he did a great job, pulling out some important, uncomfortable things from each star, making for good viewing. He’s interested, not in the usual star stuff, but in real stuff. And I liked that.

Shatner’s getting older — aren’t we all? — and some day he’ll retire from public life. That will be a sad day for me, as he somehow feels like my big brother. Until then, I promise to stay a fan, never to stalk him, and today, I’m honoring his brilliant work on Boston Legal with a cyber kiss on the cheek.


Filed under dreams