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The First Year in Perspective

Greetings to everyone, I'm sending you my best wishes for keeping safe in this challenging time. 

June marks a year since I launched my website, social media presence, my blog and this newsletter.  What a year it has been with my book launch on two coasts, two blogs and a newsletter each month, plus keeping up with social media on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. 

Aphrodite's Pen: The Power of Writing Erotica After Midlife was not my first book, but it was the first with a major publisher and the first time that I have used social media for a specific purpose.  Thanks to YOU for being there with me on this journey, and to the folks who build and maintain the web site, help with social media and promotions and the fabulous women at North Atlantic Books.

Also in June our home will start Month 4 of lockdown, and I remember those first weeks of naively counting mere days since I’d been in a store or visited friends. Although I grieve the loss of connecting in person, we humans are a resourceful bunch, and we develop new ways of being together. There are even some gains to be made when distance is no object. When I moved from California to North Carolina two years ago, I lost the monthly meetings with my Elderotica writing group. But now that they have gone online in lockdown, I’ve been invited to join those meetings again. What a delightful group of women! So much glee and such fun writing together and reading to one another. This marvelous experience shows that women all over the country could join forces for Elderotica Zoom meetings and experience that kind of sharing of joy and fun. If you are interested in trying out a meeting with fun prompts and supportive feedback, please email me. If I hear from enough interested women, (six to ten) I will work on setting up a group in the June/July timeframe, based on the structure and methods for positive feedback in the “Writing Sisters” chapter of Aphrodite’s Pen.

I’ve also just started weekly online accountability and planning sessions with an artist friend. I have lots of great ideas but with the loss of structure in lockdown, I don’t always accomplish all that I set out to do. As one wag put it, “The most useless purchase I made this year was a 2020 planner.” At the start of each week my friend and I swap emails with our plans for the week. Then we convene on Zoom at week’s end to compare notes, congratulate each other on successes, and suggest ideas to each other for the week ahead. If like me you struggle to stay on track in this strange time of “retirement from retirement,” consider setting up something similar with a creative friend. You may well find yourself writing more—including, hopefully, more erotic writing!

In my April newsletter, I listed a number of possible prompts on the theme of erotic writing in lockdown. One of the commitments I’ve made with my accountability buddy is to write five “Erotic Pandemic” stories this week. My plan is to write as much of a draft as I have time for, set it aside, and move on to the next prompt my next writing day. And no looking back until all are drafted! So far I’ve written ten draft stories this way. When I have fifteen, I will circle back and complete the drafts one by one. This “write-and-run” approach has several advantages:

  • It builds in time away from each story, while you work on other stories, so that you come back to each one with fresh eyes
  • It doesn’t allow time to brood over any one story or to go into perfectionist mode
  • It ensures that you write on a variety of topics over the course of a few weeks

I plan to go three rounds on this collection of stories, with a second round to finish the first drafts, and a third round to edit them one by one. I’m excited about this method, and if it works as well as I hope, I may roll it out as a course later on.

Wishing you and yours beautiful weather as Spring glides toward Summer, and may you have safe opportunities to enjoy flowers and butterflies, moon and stars. I hope your connections with nature, with others, and with yourself will be healthy and rewarding in whatever form they take, and may you write with joy and without self-judgement.  Be well.

All the best,

A FREE Email Writing Class
Writing Your Erotic Journey

My class on “Writing Your Erotic Journey” is ready to launch and you can sign up now! You may remember the terrific guest post by my friend Simone LaBerge, “Sexuality Down the Decades,” where she reflected on her own sexual development from childhood to her seventies and talked about her hopes for the years ahead. 

Her writing inspired me to create a free short course to help you to reflect on your journey so far and your hopes for the days to come. 

Sign up for a fascinating interior journey, and share the details with your close friends and on social media please!.

New From The Blog

With the limits on travel, CrunchyTales Magazine changed its plans to host a live panel discussion on the erotic lives of midlife women. I was looking forward to a trip to England in June to appear on that panel, but the video panel this month was terrific fun. Michela Di Carlo, the Editor of CrunchyTales, interviewed pole dancer Makeda Smith of FlyingOver50 and burlesque performer Judith Vandepeer along with me, and the resulting interview on YouTube is enjoyable and thought-provoking. Video and the participants are lined in the article (see below)

My other blog this month was a look at how the pandemic shapes people’s erotic experience, as interpreted by governments, the media, and experts on sexuality. Feeling extra sexy? Not feeling sexy at all? Check out the blog (below) and you’ll see that it’s all perfectly normal.

It’s also clear that writing and reading erotica is one safe way to build on our erotic experience during lockdown. For more about writing erotica, please see my free short course on building an erotic story—and of course there is much more in my 2019 book, Aphrodite’s Pen: The Power of Writing Erotica after Midlife.

Header image for Sexuality Down the Decades
A burlesque performer, a pole dancer and an erotic writer walk into a…

It sounds like the start of a corny joke! In fact we were all part of a video interview with the editor of a European magazine for women over forty.

And that’s how I found myself in a truly remarkable conversation with dancers Judith Vandepeer and Makeda Smith, hosted by Michela Di Carlo of CrunchyTales Magazine. In ordinary life, CrunchyTales holds in-person panel discussions several times a year in England and Italy. But in this time of social distancing the video forum was great fun and allows women all over the world to join the conversation. Women who discovered a creative passion after midlife were interviewed about their vivid sexy older life, and how they go about raising the profile of older women. We also talked about helping other women pursue their passion and creativity.........

Read More........

Image for blog on Spectrum of Sex book interview with Maria Nieto
Pandemic Strategies – What Can a Sexy Old Woman Do?

Did you ever expect to see an official government document recommend sexting and sending sexy pictures? Neither did I. But among the many plot twists of the last few months we have this official memo from New York City on how to enjoy sexuality without spreading COVID-19. It’s all about the joys of masturbation, video dates, sexting and chat rooms.

Taking it even further, the government of the Netherlands has instituted sex buddy guidance for singles in lockdown.........

Read More .....

More Blog Posts
KATHLEEN A. BARY, PhD, coeditor of "Unmasked: Women Write about Sex and Intimacy after Fifty" says:

“When we think of erotica, we don’t usually link it together with middle-aged women. In fact it is middle-aged women who are finally liberated to fully experience the sensuous delight of erotica. They have reached the point in their lives when they are no longer encumbered by the risk of pregnancy nor zapped by the physical ramifications of menopause. This is a groundbreaking book that so many of us have been waiting for...empowered women writing erotica!

Available at all good booksellers & online stores

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Stella Fosse

125 S Estes Drive #4311, Chapel Hill
NC 27312 United States

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