First of all, thanks to Delilah for having me on her awesome blog! I hope everyone is having a holiday season filled with the unique joy and generosity of spirit that is so close to the surface this time of year. I know I am!
I wanted to write about inspiration—my wickedly fun journey to becoming an author of erotica—so I thought back, trying to determine the specific moment that ultimately sent me down this path. And it took me waaay back!
Studying English Literature in the hallowed, scholarly halls of the small college I attended, I read (and loved) Shakespeare, Spenser, Milton and Donne. I practically spoke and dreamed in iambic pentameter. Then I was given D.H. Lawrence as assigned reading.
I had heard of him, sure. And was intrigued, as young Aurora always was, by the fact that some of his books had been banned. I figured his writing was probably pretty tame by modern standards. Maybe there’d be a “damn” or some off-color remark by a character. When I read Lady Chatterley’s Lover, though, I was shocked. My mouth dropped open and I reread the first sex scene a couple of times to be sure I wasn’t imagining it. He used the word cunt. With abandon. With love. His descriptions of fucking, of the hero’s cock and the heroine’s cunt (nicknamed John Thomas and Lady Jane) were everything that I thought should be vulgar. But instead, they were wonderful. Intimate. Gloriously beautiful. Romantic.
D.H. Lawrence and his “four-letter Anglo-Saxon words” (description used by a New York judge about Lady) opened up a dimension of reading and romance to me that truly expanded my mind. Maybe even made me a better person. That’s the power of literature. To affect readers so deeply that you change them just a little bit. I wanted to do that, too.
I still think about D.H.’s words today when I’m writing. When some part of me hesitates a little at pressing the keys to type some of the descriptive words that appear in erotic writing, some other, wilder part of me swoops in and says, “Do it. That’s the right word for it. That’s the word you want.” Those words can be rough and raw, but brimming with passion.
I think the wildness is part of what draws me to writing about shapeshifters. The shapeshifters in my stories have their animalistic natures barely held inside of them, crouched and ready to pounce. It sounds kind of like a curse, and in some ways it is, but in other ways, they live life more fully. They lead the heroines to embrace their lives with greater passion, courage and love, too.
Ivan Dorogev, the Russian werebear hero in my Stocking Stuffer story, Upon a Midnight Bear, has a rough exterior even as a human man. As a werebear, he can fully manifest that wildness. But his eyes always show the tenderness he has inside of him, as a bear or as a man.
Here’s a little taste of Upon a Midnight Bear, which is truly a fun holiday treat. I hope you’ll love reading about Ivan and Serena as much as I loved writing about them:
Walking home, she had to pass by what her Poppy had called the Upstart Houses. A flutter of pleasure and excitement coursed through her when she saw that her neighbor had chosen that exact time to come out to get his mail from the mailbox next to the road. She slowed her steps a little bit, taking in the view. And Good Lord, he was worth getting a little chilly for.
Ivan Dorogev was tall and muscular, with dark eyes and a face that was as handsome as it was rugged. He wasn’t wearing a coat—presumably he hadn’t taken the time to put one on just to dash out of the house—and she could see his huge muscles moving under his dark sweater and jeans. She’d noticed before that he had a slight limp, but it didn’t prevent him from moving with a surprising grace for such a large man. His limp, and the indefinable air of sadness that always seemed to hover around him, made him just imperfect enough to draw her in even further. What had brought him to Greening? And why did he often seem so alone?
Serena didn’t realize she’d stopped walking until he raised his hand in a wave. Her heart pounded as she raised one arm back, unable to really achieve a full wave with her hand in her heavy coat and mittens. Had he noticed her staring? Practically drooling? She really, really hoped not.
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Aurora_Russell_Upon_a_Midnight_Bear?id=KW4UCwAAQBAJ&hl=en
Ellora’s Cave: https://www.ellorascave.com/product/upon-a-midnight-bear/
About Aurora Russell
Aurora is originally from the frozen tundra of the upper-Midwest (ok, not frozen all the time!) but now loves living in New England with her real-life hero/husband, wonderfully silly son, and two of the most extraordinary cats she has ever had the pleasure to meet. But she still goes back to the Midwest to visit, just never in January.
She doesn’t remember a time that she didn’t love to read, and has been writing stories since she learned how to hold a pencil. She has always liked the romantic scenes best in every book, story, and movie, so one day she decided to try her hand at writing her own romantic fiction, which changed her life in all the best ways.