Reading Sexy Books For or With Your Partner & A Message to the Dudes

Photo by M31 (flickr cc)Happy Valentine's Day, everyone! 

Today, I ran across a post by Maisey Yates over at the Peanut Butter on the Keyboard blog on why it's important to keep the sizzle in your marriage. And I ended up having a sideline conversation with her about it where the topic of romance novels came up. Obviously, we both write romance, so we're a bit biased, but both of us see them as relationship enhancers rather than detractors. Life can be crazy and busy and exhausting. And sometimes when we finally roll into bed at night, the last thing on our minds is sexy times. We can forget how nice it can be to lose ourselves in the touch of the person we love most.

And sometimes all we need is a little nudge or reminder. Taking a few minutes in the evening to decompress and read a book that focuses on the greatness of romance can be just the thing that puts us back in the right frame of mind. It reminds us how transcendent kissing and touching (and kinky things, if you're reading one of my books) can be with someone you love. It provides space in our minds again for romance and sex, shoving out all those other things--the dishes, the kids' homework, the pound we gained this week, the project at work-- at least for a little while. It can remind a woman what a sacred space we can create when it's just you and the person you love with nothing else between you.

So when I hear some guys deride romance novels or worse, get jealous of them, I kind of want to smack them on the back of the head. The logic goes something like this: "I should be enough. I don't want her lusting over some fictional dude to get turned on for me." Come on, guys. It's not about wishing you were some other dude. Women need to be in the right state of mind for sex and often it's harder for us to block out the other stuff and focus--reading a book and getting swept away in some sexy story can help refocus us. It makes us fall for you all over again and reminds us--hey, we have this guy we love sitting over there and all this sexy stuff that is going on in this book--well, we can have that too. Right. Now. Hello, there.

It also can make us more adventurous and open to new things in bed. I'm sure there are many men out there right now (especially after the surge of BDSM romance out there now) who are smart enough to not make fun of the thing that made their women say--so, hey, honey, maybe you could tie me up tonight and tell me exactly how to please you. Lol. 

I've had a number of my readers tell me that they even pick out their favorite scenes from my books and read them aloud with their partners. How fun is that? It's a sexy activity and it provides a more comfortable way to convey--hey, maybe we could try something like this. AND, it conveys to the woman that her guy is totally secure in himself and their relationship and is willing to hear her fantasies without all that judgey-ness.

And nothing is sexier than a guy who is confident and secure enough to know that there's no way a fictional hero could compete with him in his woman's eyes. Promise. That. Is. Hot.

So go forth and have a fantastic Valentine's Day!

Blatant self-promotion alert: And if you're looking for a sexy, short read for you and your partner to try out, STILL INTO YOU, my novella, is about a married couple re-kindling the flame by getting a little sexually adventurous and is only 2.99.

Anyone read steamy books with their honey? How does your partner feel about your reading habits?

Spice It Up Thursday: Music Is For More Than Dancing

Photo by halighalie (click pic for link)Welcome back to my Spice It Up feature. This is a short blog series I'm doing in honor of the release of STILL INTO YOU, a story about a married couple trying to fall back in lust with each other after life has gotten in the way. :)

So far we've talked about Sexy Role-Playing and The Real Girl's Guide to Lingerie. Today I'm covering something a little more basic. Music.

There's a reason movies have music in the background of the sexy scenes. It adds a layer to things, inspires certain emotions or moods. Yet, in our own lives, we often forget that this can be added to our own sexy times with our partners. Yes, it takes extra thought and maybe a little planning, but nothing is sexier than partners making an effort to make something a little more special and less mundane.


Tips on Using Music in the Bedroom

Beware of the radio

One option is to just turn on the radio to a favorite station and hope for the best. But be warned, this can often derail more than enhance the situation. Nothing like having a sexy moment and a commercial for the local plumber comes on or a song that you hate. Women, more so than men, are easily distracted in the moment. So don't set yourself of your partner up for losing focus.

Each of you make a playlist on your own. Then maybe have a collaborative one.

What your idea of a sexy soundtrack is and his idea may be two different things. That's okay. Each come up with your own playlists and then take turns using them. And don't judge the other person's. You should each be free to pick what you want when it's your turn.

You don't have to focus only on the romantic love songs.

If romantic slow songs are what make you happy, that's fine, use them. But push yourself a bit and think of songs that are sexy in their own right without necessarily being the traditional love songs. Sex can be slow, romantic, intense, dirty, fun, kinky, whatever. There are all kinds of songs that can play to the mood you want to set. (I always think about this when writing. Even if I don't write it in, when I'm writing a love scene, there is usually a certain type of music playing in the background depending on the mood of the scene.)

Consider having a few afterglow songs too.

See, I told you this takes planning. So maybe you went the intense route and used heavy rock music for your sexy times. Afterwards, you're not going to still want that blaring, so have a mellow, we're in the afterglow playlist you can switch to and enjoy the moment with your partner.

Headphones can be fun.

This is moving into a little bit of sensory deprivation kind of thing, but wireless headphones or earbuds can be a fun thing to try. You can also add a blindfold and then the person can focus on nothing but their partner's touch and the sound of the music. The music via headphone can keep the person totally focused on the moment and what they're feeling. Fun times. :)


All right, those are just a few ideas, but hopefully it gets you started on thinking about what could work for you.

Oh, and another reminder...

My STILL INTO YOU contest is still open: Order STILL INTO YOU This Week and Win a Box of Awesome, a gift card, or a 20 page critique from me!


Question for y'all: What do you consider the sexiest song ever?

Mine is probably "Cry to Me" from Dirty Dancing but that's because I'm obsessed with that movie and it plays during my favorite scene. :)