Sunday, August 28, 2005


Watched a fascinating tv programme last night about the development of the English language (British not American) since the Sixties. The people interviewed were very knowledgeable and made some interesting points. For instance, that it was the combined influence of the Beatles and Radio Caroline that opened the BBC up to regional accents; and that since English 'borrowed' about 50-100,000 French words in the middle ages, many of the English words France is now objecting to started life as French. LOL

The most telling point of all related to the English language's ability to absorb new words and phrases, thereby refreshing itself and keeping itself alive. Or, as one contributor put it, English tends to lead foreign languages up dark alleys and mug them for all their best words. LOL. One linguistics professor stated categorically that this was the single most important reason why English is the current world-language while French is not. Fascinating stuff.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Balls to you too ;)

Got inspiration on Sticky Wicket, the story I'm hoping to submit to Torquere's new sporting erotica anthology. (And what a great idea that is! LOL) The story is based on one I wrote as fan fiction years ago, but with serious rewrites. The old version wasn't from any one character's point of view, and kind of fizzled out with no proper ending, and had hardly any sex in it - not even sexual tension. Soooo, I'm hacking it about. When I've finished it should be from Peter's point of view, with heaps of sexual tension as he and his lover play cricket, but can't get themselves declared 'out' in order to retire to the pavilion for some rumpy-pumpy. I'm hoping it'll be a vast improvement on the original. I've written about a thousand words so far, still got loads to do so I'm about to re-apply nose to grindstone.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

New book review site

I've decided to re-invent my old Live Journal as a book review site. I read so many books these days and it's hard to keep track of what they were, let alone remember what they were about or how good they were! So I'll be posting details and a brief review of everything I read, print or e-published, large or small, good or bad.

Book reviews by Fiona Glass

Entries so far are 'Dancer' by Colum McCann (a fictionalised biography of Rudolf Nureyev) and 'Love Dot Com', a fun novella about electronic love by Julia Talbot.

Much busy-ness

Working hard on the new issue of Forbidden Fruit, mostly on coding up the stories to html. Even with a template it can be surprisingly hard work, especially as my web authoring softward doesn't like Word documents or rtf! I have to change everything into text files, which are the only ones not to either get chewed up or come out in a single never-ending paragraph with no punctuation. *grins*

Good news is we're pretty much full. All the fiction slots are filled now, and we're just gathering up the last few bits of non-fiction and fun. Everything looks set for release in early September, barring last minute disasters. LOL

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

All That is Gold

A brief teaser from the new story, setting the scene. :)


Duncan Bell stood in the blazing sun, contemplated his luggage and the long, dusty track that faced him, and sighed. It looked as though it was going to be one of those days. The taxi driver who'd brought him from the airport had pocketed the fare and disappeared in a cloud of dust and exhaust fumes straight back over the nearest hill. The path was stony and deeply rutted and there wasn't a scrap of shade to be seen - and he'd left his hat on the plane. And worst of all, his suitcase alone weighed half a ton and there were bags of technical stuff as well - and he wasn't exactly built like Superman. There was no way he could transport himself and all this clobber down to the temple site.

"Knew I should have stopped at the bloody hotel first," he muttered, kicking a handy stone. His foot caught some of the low-growing plants and the scent of fresh warm herbs wafted up to his face - and suddenly things didn't seem so bad. A warm breeze blew up from the cliffs below, carrying more of the same scent and the sharp green smell of the sea and he breathed in deep. Nice. You didn't get this sort of air in Liverpool, that was for sure. The sea there stank of diesel from the ships, or the raw sewage they pumped out at the river mouth, and the streets were paved not with herbs but the grim remains of last night's take-away. Much as he loved his home, there were times when he was glad to get away.

He tugged his handkerchief out and wiped his face. His fair hair and skin were no protection at all against the potency of the sun, and he needed to decide what to do. It might be hours before anyone on site thought to wonder where he was; either he stood here and fried to death, or he found somewhere to stash the bulk of his stuff and walked down to the temple himself. There was a hut on site, or so Gloria had said - hopefully he could cool off there.

The cliff top where the road had petered out was barren and remarkably devoid of hiding places, but it was so deserted he had the feeling he could leave the suitcase out in full view and it would still be here when he got back. A sea-bird sailed the thermals above his head, a dog howled from a neighbouring farm, but apart from that he could have been the last human on earth. Even the team of archaeologists working on the site seemed to have left no record of their passing.

Glancing around he spotted a small hollow filled with creeping plants and rested his suitcase and two of the bags in that, draping as much greenery over them as he could. Then he plucked his sunglasses out of his top pocket, perched them on his nose, and with only his laptop bag slung over a shoulder, set off down the track.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Ah, that's better

I finally got going with some writing again after weeks suffering from terminal writer's block. Right up to our holiday I was getting on fine but three weeks away, followed by two weeks catching up on the washing, followed by simply tons of admin, meant I got out of the groove and couldn't seem to get back into it again. But today I sat down with an idea for a new story that I'm quite excited about, and wrote the first 600 words or so. Not much, but at least it's got me through that awful brick wall. I hate not being able to write - I get really irritable and frustrated, and sit staring at page or screen but the words just won't come.

The new story should be a blast. I've set it on Malta again which makes it the third story that particular island has inspired! It revolves around an archaeologist, a newly discovered temple and a young woman who may not be all that she seems. *grins*

It's official

Erotic Romance Writers International Member

I'm a member of Erotic Romance Writers International!!

Thanks to Sable for all the hard work of setting the guild up, and for the gorgeous graphics!

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Brand new erotic romance awards

An announcement on behalf of Erotic Romance Writers International:

The Fruity Awards 2006

Erotic Romance Writers International are both pleased and proud to announce their brand new Fruity Awards for published 'queer' erotic romance. Co-sponsored by Forbidden Fruit, the Erotic Romance Writers' Forum and Erotic Romance Reviews for Women, the Awards have been set up as an antidote to certain recent award ceremonies, in an attempt to divert attention and prestige back to the people who deserve it most - the writers.

All e-books published during 2005 are eligible, providing they fall within one of our three categories - male/male, female/female, and pansexual (or 'open queer' which includes but is not limited to bisexual, menage, transgendered, cross dressing and other unusual or experimental forms of queer writing.)

Voting is open now at the ERWI's new website at . Nominations can be made until 1 December 2005, at which time the members of the ERWI will choose the most popular books in each category. These will be read by our judges and first, second and third places awarded on the basis of quality of writing and sheer enjoyment. There will also be one overall winner chosen from the top three books in all three categories. The winners will be announced on 1 February 2006.

We do hope you will take the time to nominate your favourite queer erotic romance titles from 2005 and look forward to reading the work of some excellent writers.

Sable St Germain, Erotic Romance Writers International
Emily Veinglory, Erotic Romance Writers' Forum
Fiona Glass, Forbidden Fruit Magazine
Delinda Jasper, Erotic Romance Reviews for Women

Grammar vs writing

Some of us on the Erotic Romance Writers' Forum have been having a really interesting discussion about the benefits or otherwise of sticking rigidly to formal grammar when writing creatively.

It's a fascinating topic. Obviously all writing needs a certain amount of grammar otherwise the readers simply wouldn't understand it. And I believe a writer needs to understand and use good grammar first before choosing whether or not to discard it, otherwise they won't really understand what it is they're getting wrong and why.

But after that, I'm not sure that good writing is just about enforcing the rules of grammar. In its strictest sense, grammar can be very inflexible - to the point where it stifles creativity and stops anything new or original in its tracks. You only have to look at some of the wonderful fiction being published, particularly in Britain, these days to see that good writing doesn't necessarily have to include perfect grammar. The novel 'Dancer' by Colum McCann, for instance, contains one sentence that is THIRTY TWO PAGES long, with no punctuation other than commas and line breaks. It's terrible grammar, and yet in the context of that novel it works wonderfully because McCann is using it for a particular reason. The style of prose reflects the nature of the character whose point of view that chapter is written from. He's a social butterfly, flitting from one situation to the next, one lover to the next, and the breathless style of the narrative brings that to life far more vividly than any straightforward description could.

Myself, I love to bend the rules. *grins* I think British English has developed into a more fluid and less inflexible language than its American cousin and I enjoy experimenting with new ways of saying things, and new ways of getting an impression of my characters across. I don't suppose I'll ever be as good at it as McCann, but I can always dream!

Good response

Thanks to everyone who responded to our cry for help - we've had four new stories in already which is brilliant news!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Story required for Forbidden Fruit

We've finalised the contents list of the new issue now, and although we've got heaps of great stories and other paraphernalia *grins*, we do still have space for one more story. Sooo, if anyone's reading this and happens to have a spare male/male story between two and ten thousand words, in pretty much any genre (except bdsm), please feel free to email me on and we'll talk!

The magazine doesn't pay for fiction but it does offer excellent exposure to an avid and growing readership which includes fellow authors, editors and publishers. We also offer the chance to promote yourself, your work and your website on our 'biographies' page. Full guidelines are available online at if you need further guidance.

If we get snowed under with more good stories than we possibly have space for, we'll consider holding some of them over for our January 2006 issue (subject to the author's approval, of course).

Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you.

New stories

Spent the day reading two new stories for Forbidden Fruit. Both are first installments of new serials (one set in Ancient Greece, one an archaeological mystery) and both are great - full of intrigue and action and engaging characters. I can't wait to read the next installments myself! Which is excellent news, since our previous serial-writer has sadly decided not to send us any more installments and I didn't want to leave our readers hanging.

And I've been contacted by the artist who's going to be doing the cover art for my Chippewa elf story. He does absolutely wonderful illustrations so I feel very lucky that he's been chosen. I've sent off a brief synopsis of the story and descriptions of the characters to help him - and I'll be really excited to see what he comes up with!

Friday, August 19, 2005


I was chatting earlier to my friend Liz about the benefits of having a good beta or writing partner to help with your work. She's been lucky enough to find one recently and was waxing lyrical *grin* about how how much it's helped her, both in terms of physical stuff like technique and for sheer motivation. I lost my writing partner last year (cites irreconcilable differences LOL) and it made me realise how much I miss that close relationship. Having someone on the same wavelength, who writes similar stories in a similar style, and who understands your writing and what you're trying to say possibly better than you do, is a wonderful thing and something I found enormously helpful in the past. I would love to find a replacement but you can't just prod the first writer you come across and say 'fancy a beta darling?' - it needs to be someone you get on well enough with to survive the arguments *grin* and someone who hasn't already got a beta of their own. Here's hoping there's another lost writing soul out there somewhere!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Busy bee

Working hard on coding up the new issue of Forbidden Fruit, ready for early September. Thanks to a new and enthusiastic team we've got some great stuff to go in - heaps of great stories, two new serials, articles, even a penguin cartoon! Now it's just a question of translating it all to html and bullying it onto the relevant pages. Sometimes that can be a thankless and tedious task but this time I've got so many people helping me that it all seems to be falling nicely into place.

In a few spare moments I also came up with a graphics design for the Fruity Awards, a brand new set of awards that several of us on the Erotic Romance Writers Forum have come up with. Co-sponsored by the Forum, Forbidden Fruit and Erotic Romance Reviews for Women, the awards will be open to any published erotic romance e-book in one of three categories: male/male, female/female, and pansexual (open queer). Nominations should be open soon and we're hoping it will be an antidote to certain recent award ceremonies that were so controversial they diverted all the publicity and prestige away from the people who most deserved it - the writers. Further details coming real soon!

Testing testing

OK, I got really fed up with both my msn and LJ blogs because neither of 'em seems to have everything I want. One has a picture gallery and lots of space for links but no friends option, the other has hardly any space for links. *grumble* So I decided to see what blogger has to offer. Watch this space. LOL