Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Taboo Tens Day Eight: Julie Lynn Hayes...

Greetings fans!

Welcome to day eight of the Taboo Tens here at Michael's.

Gives me great pleasure to welcome one of the best in the genre and a good friend. Julie Lynn Hayes with a fab guest post and a giveaway of her book!

Take it away Julie!

Taboos We Love to Break—in Fantasy
Verboten. Forbidden. Two words that mean the same thing. Say them aloud. They tingle the tongue. They roll off of it in sensual waves. Look at the words. They speak of hidden mysteries. Of promises. Of deep dark desires.

Telling someone that something is not allowed is often tantamount to waving that proverbial red flag in front of a bull—it only serves to inflame, rather than quell. So why do it?
Taboo. Such naughty connotations and very exciting ones.

Have you ever wondered why some things are taboo? I’m not talking about the obvious—anything which inflicts pain (nonconsensual) or leads to death or destruction is not desireable. But ah, the others.

Not coincidentally, the others are of the sexual variety, and these are the ones that the church forbids. Why? Maybe because if they didn’t define evil, we’d have nothing to compare good against?
I’m not here to argue the rights or wrongs of the matter, I just want to talk about them in regards to the fantasies we weave, in our minds and in our books and films. You don’t have to do it to think about it. And just because you think about it, doesn’t even mean  you actually want to do it.
Incest and twincest and bondage and sado-masochism. Loving a priest, or casting eyes on your brother.  

Ménage à trios, or quatre or more. Dominants and submissives. Bestiality. Pedophilia. Necrophilia. Homoeroticism (taboo in many places).

Personally, I do not read all of these things, nor write them all, but I’m not one to tell others what or what not to read or write. That is not my place. There are some things that I find titillating. Everyone has his own forms of pleasure, and if no one is harmed, then why make them taboo?

Twincest is a specialized niche in the incest genre, and when I think of it the Weasley twins comes to mind first, followed by the Prewitts, both in the Harry Potter fandom. In real life you can find twins that are closer than average in films, in photos, and in books. I have a set in my series Captivations. Besides being twins, they are also gargoyles, a bit of a twist there. There is just something hot about twins who love one another in a very special way, especially if the twins are male (my opinion, of course). Mirror images, who know one another’s body as if it were their own.  Yeah, damn hot.
Most publishers don’t allow incest, which I don’t understand. It’s not as if they are condoning everything in their books. They have no problem with murder, rape, drug use, etc. Why forbid incest? And the other big no-no’s that are on most publishers lists. (This is not true for all, I know, it’s a generalization). There are a few who do permit it. Silver Publishing is one, so is Wicked Nights, I’m sure there are others.

My rationalization for incest being forbidden has to do with genetics. Although if you check with Mother Nature, she often breeds in that way, so obviously it’s not her choice, so whose is it? If Nature doesn’t want something, she has ways of getting rid of it. Species can’t interbreed for a reason. It’s the Church that says it’s wrong, and instills the belief in people so that they too think it’s wrong, although they don’t know why necessarily. Ironic. If you believe in church canon, Adam and Eve were the first two people, the only people—therefore aren’t we all to some degree the product of incest? I mean who else did their children have to procreate with but one another? If you take the story literally, that is.

And priests. Cardinals. Bishops and popes. How hot is a really hot Cardinal wearing his robes? Case in point—Cesare Borgia, Showtime’s The Borgias. Hottest Cardinal ever. I’m just as happy to be looking at a picture of him in his robes than naked (not that I mind that too). Anyone remember The Thorn Birds? How hot was Richard Chamberlain in that? I haven’t seen it, but I’ve seen him. And to be honest, the book is way hot itself. Maybe that’s why I’m afraid to try the mini-series.

I have a series that just started at Wicked Nights, called Forbidden. One of the main characters is a priest—Father Sergio de Basco. He’s exceedingly hot, let me tell you. I always wanted to write something about a hot priest, and now I am. The other protagonist is a spoiled rich boy, Jerico James, who falls into lust with the priest from the moment they meet. Think they’ll fall into bed together? Oh hell no, can’t make it that simple, gotta make Jerico work for it.

Threesomes, foursomes and moresomes. Not my cup of tea but very popular. I believe I saw a book once with one female and five men! Can I say just omg? I did not read the book in question, don’t even remember the author or title, but I have to ask one thing, just my own personal observation, but how do you write such a book and not have the heroine come off as slutty? Just wondering.
I think the popularity stems from the fantasy to be loved by more than one person, to be pampered and spoiled and desired. In theory. In fantasy. In books and in films. I think in reality, not so much. I think the reality is not so glamorous, because in my opinion, it’s human nature to pair off, and someone is bound to be odd man or woman out and end up being hurt.

In some societies, polygamy is natural and encouraged (which is a legal term for a moresome, also known as having a harem). Has anyone ever noticed, though, that this only extends to the male of the species? If women try it, well, they’re just sluts. Men are manly and virile; they’re protectors and they’re spreading their seed. Recently we’ve seen stories about such families, I think one is called Big Love. I haven’t seen it but I’ve heard good things.

There are things that are considered to be taboo that people will find offensive, without a doubt. That is their prerogative. But I don’t believe those people should ruin it for everyone else. If you don’t want to read it, then don’t, but don’t ban it. There are too many people willing to tell other people how to live, and whose lives would certainly not stand up to close scrutiny. Why can’t people just stay the hell out of other people’s bedrooms and let them be?

Personally, I think it’s a matter of jealousy. That the others are doing or writing about or reading about things the others only dream about and dare not admit. Is that the holdup on gay marriage? The legislators are afraid that they might have to come out of the closet themselves? Or at the very least admit they were wrong about it, and its potential harmful effects on society?

Okay, I think I derailed myself there. What else is new, right?

Taboo. I love the word, so many sexy connotations. Depths to be plumbed. Scenarios to be played out to one’s heart content. I’ve just barely dipped my toe into that ocean, never even got to fetishes or whips and chains. I’ll leave that to someone who knows something about it to discuss.

Just keep in mind that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and just cause something isn’t for you doesn’t mean it’s necessarily wrong for everyone. Pleasure is where you find it, and if it’s just a fantasy, who does it hurt? My philosophy is have fun with it! Publishers—lighten up a little bit. If you tag the potentially offensive stuff, then anyone who buys it knows what they are getting. I see no taboos against violence, it’s all sex. At least consider it, and remember that people who enjoy their fetishes will pay for them too.

That’s it for me for now, thanks for having me, it’s been a pleasure! I’d love to hear what everyone thinks! Drop me a comment if you agree, or disagree, or whatever. Come to my blog, I’m running a contest. Hope to see you there!

My Links:

My Publishers:

Blurb: Life is truly beautiful!  Richard actually asked me to marry him, do you believe it?  Of course there’s a small hurdle we have to cross – namely that gay marriage isn’t legal here in Missouri.  But it’s a start, right?
Things are looking up for us, now that I know the truth about Richard.  Our careers are doing well, we’re blissfully happy together, and Mother has given us her blessing!  My sister Diana is going through boyfriends like some people change clothes, I wonder if she’ll ever find Mr. Right? Cat’s cousin has turned out to be a real interesting character, and the most interesting thing is – he’s a werewolf!  And more disturbing than that, I think that maybe my father (that shadowy figure who’s never figured in my life) might just be someone named Jason.  It’s a long story.
Just when I thought I had things figured out, they change, and I find out that what I thought I knew was just so much nonsense.  In other words – lies.  Who can I trust?  Other than Richard, of course. And what should I believe?  And why does it seem like the world is trying to shake me out of my lycanthropic closet?
What’s a gay werewolf to do?

Now, where were we? Oh yes, Richard and I have our lips locked together like a couple of love-starved fools, and we're crying and laughing at the same time, and I've just agreed to marry him….
Yes, I did say marry, and I know there are those who will look upon us askance. Gay marriage is far from an accepted lifestyle in this country, even in this supposedly enlightened day and age. In fact it is not only frowned upon, but largely banned. And mostly by people who are afraid of us. Why? Good question. I won't even get into religious ethics, or a discussion of the Bible, nor Christian precepts. Let me just say that disliking or hating someone on the basis of their sexual orientation is just as wrong as hating them for the color of their skin, or for their religious beliefs. And forbidding people to legally wed for the same reason is simply wrong. Where do you draw the line? Mixed race couples, mixed religion couples? What happened to loving one another, regardless of who they are? We are not sinners, we are simply human….
Anyway, we are here and warm… and touching, and loving, and all of the bad air has been expelled, and all that is left is the love in our hearts, the love we bear for one another, which envelops us and cradles us gently. Now we truly begin….
Principessa, our darling King Charles spaniel and our only child, is running circles around us now, excited by our excitement. Her daddies are together again, and very obviously happy. We break the kiss to bestow caresses on our baby. She clambers in between us and we manage to cuddle around her.
"Max, I'm so sorry…"
"Shhh." I lay a finger against his lips. "No apologies, no regrets. Just us and the future. Our future. Together."
He nods solemnly. "I'll never leave you again, Max," he swears, "I'll never disappear without a word, I promise. I'm yours for as long as you'll have me."
"And I am yours," I echo, "'til death do us part."
Our lips come together with soft sighs, and sensual shivers that run between us like electrical charges. We haven't touched at all since the ill-fated night of the last full moon, and the undischarged desire we bear for one another is enough to jump-start a dead car battery.
"I've missed you so much," he murmurs into my lips, "I need you, Max, I always will…."
"And I need you Richard," I reply softly. "Nights without you are far too long… and lonely…."
He moves closer now, his tongue seeking and receiving permission to enter my mouth, his fingers winding through my hair. We are content to let our lips do all the talking. No need to rush, we have all the time in the world—now that we are together again, never to be parted. Our eyes locked in mutual admiration. Our hearts bound in mutual bliss. Our puppy becomes bored with us, and our apparent inactivity, and settles down for a nap, watching us with those big, brown spaniel eyes. We stretch out together in the grass, oblivious to what we might be doing to our three-piece suits. Stains are made to be removed, are they not?
He rolls me over to take the dominant position above me—I love when he does that, for just between us he does dominate and I do tend to submit—it's simply the natural order of our lives. He catches my wrists in his strong grasp, pulling them over my head, holding them against the soft grass, showing me who’s in control—not that I don't know that already.
"Tell me what Max wants." He rubs against me suggestively; the material separating us only serves to enhance the friction between our hardening cocks in a delightfully maddening way.
"Max wants Richard," I respond promptly, predictably. "Max wants Richard to come back home, where he belongs… in Max's bed… their bed…."
"Our bed," Richard echoes, licking my chin softly, squirming against me.
God, I want him so badly.
"And by the way, who's been sleeping in Richard's bed while he's been gone?"
"Not the wolf," I chuckle softly, "that would be Rachel. She's been staying with me. I let her have the bed and I'm in the library, on the couch. All alone…."
"Not tonight, sweet thing." He moves his tongue along my jaw line, sending chills all through me. "I hope Rachel doesn't mind, but she is officially dispossessed."
"She won't mind, now she can go back to Mark. I'm sure he'll be happy, too."
"I'm sure," he replies. "Max, you wanna take a shower?"
My cock twitches at his suggestion. "I think we can do that." I attempt to maintain an air of casualness, but I fail—miserably. I’m far too excited to be suave and detached.
He brushes his fingertips lightly over my cheeks. "Max could use a shave too," he observes. "I can do that for him, if he likes?"
If he likes? I purr warmly at his touch. Max the recluse hasn't been as diligent as he should have been in keeping the five o'clock shadow at bay. Not that it's much of a shadow, my hair is too light for that, but being a wolf does have its disadvantages. One of them is a tendency toward hirsuteness. But this works out, 'cause I love the way Richard handles a straight razor—deftly, surely, and very, very sensually. I’m about to tell him so, but Swan Lake begins. Damn, someone has horrible timing.
I try to ignore it, but some people don't take a hint.
"Max, go ahead and get it, they'll just call back," my lover points out, releasing my hands. With a sigh, I squirm, raising my hips so that I can pull the phone from my pocket.
"Max?" It's Juliet. Interruptus maternus. "You were supposed to call me…."


Great post, blurb and excerpt! Truly enjoyed.

Thank you so much for being here, Julie. 

Folks, go on and comment on the blogs so you can win some great e-books!

Hope you liked and join us tomorrow for one of my faves, Sue Brown


Julie Lynn Hayes said...

Rawiya, you flatter me greatly and make me blush! Thank you for having me and putting up with my rambling! I look forward to giving away a copy of For Love of Max! :)

Angel Martinez said...

Hi Julie! Fascinating post - love how you challenge, well, everything, lol. The call of the forbidden is deeply ingrained in the human psyche, that little voice that whispers *go on, I dare you*

Incest is an interesting cultural stumbling block since some ancient cultures not only encouraged but insisted upon it for their royalty. Pharaoh marries his sister - why? Because only a goddess should marry a god.

Julie Lynn Hayes said...

Good morning, Angel!

I think many of us have that taste for the forbidden. If it doesn't hurt anyone else, why not indulge it? At least in fantasy.

Exactly! Cleopatra is one example of that, which probably means it was a Greek thing, more than an Egyptian one.

Thanks for stopping by, Angel!

Rawiya said...

TY for giving such a great post!

Anonymous said...

Very interesting post! I do think that books shouldn't have that many taboos, you don't hurt someone with a book, if you don't like the subject, don't read it. I find your remark about incest very interesting, I asked myself before how, if you believe in Adam and Eve, all these people could be here without incest..

Julie Lynn Hayes said...

@luciatea - Books are meant to inform, to entertain, to be an escape from reality. Reading these things does not in any way mean we condone them. I've seen all the Saw films, but I don't have an uncontrollable urge to hurt people. And the taboos being all sex related is no accident, it's the morality police coming into play! As for Adam and Eve, my answer is easy - they are a myth, a couple that stands for the first people, but not something to be accepted as fact. After all, and I know people will disagree, the Bible is still just a book, written by men.

Thanks for stopping by!

GA Hauser said...

Great blog! I can't tell you how much I agree with your taboos and the fact that publishers shy away from anything 'controversial', yet, allow all that you said- rape, serial killers, brutal torture, because, you see, in our sick society, violence is fine. But have twins kiss? The whole world gets turned on its head. I have dabbled in taboos as well. And though I don't condone anything non-consensual, I do think fiction should be allowed to take us places we have never been. Isn't that the whole point? I admire you, Julie, and any other author who isn't afraid to push boundaries. G.A.

Julie Lynn Hayes said...

Hi GA! You're so right about publishers - I'm still seeking one for my Revelations; it's been rejected a few times because of its controversial nature. But controversy sells! Just ask Salman Rushdie! If the book stores would place m/m romance right beside the romance section they now have, I'd be happy. I don't even care if they integrate them - less to look through to find the author you want!

Thanks for stopping by!

Leaundra said...

Great blog post Julie, Well I love the twincest and don't really see enough out there:-)I'm with you I may not read all of the Taboo's but I think it should be out there for people who enjoy it. I just enjoy a book with two hot men. I'm finding that I'm liking just the two guys, I'll read a book with three or more but I'm enjoying couples more now. I still like that there's a choice though.

Julie Lynn Hayes said...

Hi Leaundra! Thanks! :) I have some very lovely pictures of the Brewer twins that leaves nothing to the imagination, they are my inspiration for Dante and Darius in Captivations, and yes there is a chapter with explicit twincest! I happen to like happy endings and monogamous men (and women, in m/f), but everyone should be allowed to read what they like. Diversity makes the world go round!

Thanks for stopping by, L!