August MacGregor

Celebrating Sensuality. Intended for mature audiences, 18 and over


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Love and Roses

Rose Garden painting

Happy Valentine’s Day! A rose garden for you, and wishes for a wonderful day.

“My hands will get dirty holding your rose-shaped heart, because love is like gardening—it’s earthy and takes work to keep it alive.”
― Jarod Kintz, This Book is Not FOR SALE

** Painting is “The Rose Garden” (1877) by Carl Frederic Aagaard. Quote from Goodreads.com.

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Jolly Blogger Award

jolly Blogger Award

Thank you to Galit over at Coffee n’ Notes for nominating me for The Jolly Blogger Award!

As I understand it, the rules are to answer 12 questions given to me, then nominate 10 other bloggers and give them new questions. I’m going to answer the questions posed to me, but I’ll skip the passing-it-along part, since Christmas has already passed. Sorry for not keeping the chain going 🙂

My answers struck me as being more on the boring side… and that struck me as funny in a way, because it reminds me of when I created this pen name for my erotic stories. Back then, I had wondered if I should create a persona for him. As in, he would be a character similar to one dreamed up for a story. He’d live an exciting, thrill-a-minute, playboy-ish life.

But I decided against it, and instead put that imagination into characters for stories. So these answers more reflect me behind the pen name, rather than a fake, jet-setting, Most Interesting Man in the World.

What is on your Christmas Wish list?

I don’t have long Christmas lists these days: Scotch, books, and dark chocolate. I mostly get books on my own, but it’s certainly nice to be surprised when family or friend gives me a book that I’ve never heard of, and I get introduced to a new author.

What would be the perfect Christmas?

Spending it with family and some seriously good eats on the table.

What’s your favorite winter make-up look?

I don’t do make-up, but I put on some Chapstick when it’s needed to avoid chapped lips. No flavors or sparkles on the Chapstick — I’m a plain guy when it comes to that.

Do you believe in Santa?

I most definitely did as a kid, and I still enjoy the magic of him as part of the holiday.

What is your favorite Christmas food or drink?

Cookies. Christmas meal always reminded me of our Thanksgiving meal, so it didn’t stand out as unique. But the cookies certainly did. 🙂

Will you be traveling for Christmas, if so where?

Yes, but not far. Went to see family nearby.

Would you prefer Christmas with or without snow?

With snow! I very much enjoy Christmas even if it’s mild outside, but having snow adds a beautiful atmosphere to the holiday.

Do you like eggnog?

Yes, but not a lot of it. Once I have a glass of it, with some nutmeg sprinkled on top, I’m all set until next year.

What is your favorite winter clothing?

Jeans and thick shirts — I’m not much of a sweater guy.

Do you leave Santa cookies, if so who eats them?

Not any more, but I did as a kid. I always figured the cookies and milk gave Santa energy on his long night delivering presents.

What was the best gift you ever received?

One gift doesn’t jump out at me. I remember being thrilled when opening presents and finding toys as a kid. And books, too. I loved getting books to bring me into wonderful stories.

What is your favorite Christmas memory?

Decorating the tree. Every year, I’d remember the ornaments and the stories behind them, of when I had received them. Putting the tree up marked the start of celebrating Christmas, and it’s still my favorite tradition.


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National Novel Writing Month

National Novel Writing Month banner

After hearing about National Novel Writing Month for several years, I’ve decided to take the plunge!

Maybe it’s due to the boost of confidence that finishing and self-publishing my first novel, Bavarian Beauty, in September gave to me. That proved to me that I could actually finish a novel, rather than just work on one.

Maybe it’s due to my rekindled desire to become an author as a full-time job.

Maybe it’s because writing for me has become a rush that I’m addicted to, and I keep coming back for more.

Maybe it’s because an idea for another novel has been nagging me since August, when I took time off from my blog to work on that Bavarian novel.

Maybe it’s because after I finished writing a flash fiction piece, You’re Next, a couple of weeks ago and scheduled the post for my blog, I thought about what could happen next in the story — and, well, I wrote some more, and ideas started coming.

But, really, it’s all of the above.

I’m faced with the dilemma of one story gripping its hand around my neck, demanding to be finished, and another story tapping its finger on my shoulder, demanded to be started.

Here’s my plan (so far): continue expanding You’re Next from short story to novel and see where it takes me. I’ve written 16,000 words of it, and I’ll keep on truckin’ on that. If I want to get a change of scenery along the way, I’ll dip my toe into the other story that’s nagging at me with a tapping finger.

Let’s call the second project Beta. I have a few ideas for a title, but I’m not sure which to choose — so a work-in-progress name makes more sense to me at this point. I envision it to be primarily a crime novel, with a bit of science fiction, horror, and sex mixed in.

Actually, both of these projects stray from my usual erotica leanings. In these new stories, sex is not the main event. Many years ago, when I started writing fiction, I never included sex in my short stories. Those pieces were about relationships, but they never had sex. When I tried erotica on a whim, I was hooked by the rush of the action in the story, as well as the writing of it.

But now, I’m taking a step away from so much sex in my writing. My flash fiction published recently on my blog reflects that. So will these new stories. (For those of you worried about me completely moving away from erotica, don’t worry yourself — I’ll come back to the smuttier stuff in other projects.)

So that’s the plan. I’ll rush into National Novel Writing Month with one project in the fore-front, and another waiting (impatiently) in the wings. We’ll see where this goes.

What’s this National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo for a shortened, wild-looking abbreviation) all about?

I’ll let the website describe the background, since it does a great job:

“National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing. On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 PM on November 30.

Valuing enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline, NaNoWriMo is for anyone who has ever thought fleetingly about writing a novel.”

50,000 words is a lot for a month. With November having 30 days, that’s 1,667 words every day. I’m sure there will be days that I write fewer than that, due to my day job and other things coming up. (There’s that turkey day popping up late in the month.) But I’m planning to have other days where I make up for that and exceed 2,000 words.

Well, I figure I’ll pound out as much of You’re Next as I can during November. Hopefully, I’ll push past the 50,000-word goal. That momentum may carry over to December if I feel the novel isn’t finished. Whenever I feel the story has wrapped up, I plan to put it to the side and let the story simmer in the back of my brain for a bit, while I work on Beta — or on shorter stories if my brain needs a break from the longer stories. Then, sometime ahead, I’ll revisit You’re Next and see what works and what doesn’t.

I’m looking forward to this. It’s gonna be a wild ride.

As the month moves along, I’ll post updates about my progress with the novels’ word counts. Maybe throw out a sentence or two. No long excerpts, though. I’ll save that for after I’ve gone back and taken closer looks at the novels, retooling what I think didn’t work well.

Also, I’m going to post every day with a quote about writing or literature. Something to inspire me during the month, and hopefully they will inspire others who are participating in NaNoWriMo — as well as those who are simply just writing a story that burns inside them. I’ve already scheduled these quotes for the month, to get that work out of the way and give me more time to focus on writing.

Oh — one last thing: My participant page for NaNoWriMo is here, in case you want to stop by.

Best wishes on your writing!


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Dirndls and Lederhosen

Since dirndls are an object of fetish for the main character in my new novel Bavarian Beauty, I figured I’d post about this traditional Bavarian dress. And I’m including lederhosen, for those who enjoy seeing men wearing shorts with suspenders.

Also, a reminder that I’m giving away a free ebook of my novel to 5 people. Simply email me at augustmacgregor@gmail.com by September 30 to be included in a random drawing to receive a coupon for a free ebook at Smashwords. Please email me only if you are 18 years or older, as this is an erotic novel.

Now for the dirndls and lederhosen…

Possibly the most famous lady in a dirndl is the St. Pauli Girl:

St. Pauli Girl lager

pic from Cherokee Distributing

She’s hoisting three beer steins in each hand, but in the beginning of TipsyBartender’s video, Oktoberfest is f*cking wild!, Annika (correct spelling? she’s an Oktoberfest waitress) claims to be able to double that, for a total of twelve beers at once. When she’s shown walking through a kitchen, I count ten beers that she’s carrying — but I still believe her about those twelve.

Some other ladies in dirndls:

Oktoberfest Girl, by Markburger83 (Wikimedia Commons)

Markburger83 (Wikimedia Commons)

Woman in dirndl selling pretzels, by Mahmoudreza Shirinsokhan (Flickr)

Mahmoudreza Shirinsokhan (Flickr)

Woman in dirndl with cleavage, by Diego Wyllie (Flickr)

Diego Wyllie (Flickr)

Guy in Heidi braids wig, by Stephen Whitely  (Flickr)

Stephen Whitely (Flickr)

Oh, wait. That last pic was just with a wig, not the whole dress. That we can see at least.

Where can one buy a dirndl? The official Oktoberfest website offers many different styles of dresses, for example:

Alice Dirndl dress

shop.oktoberfest.de

Amazon has them, of course — since they carry everything.

If you want a look that’s a bit racier, there are other options out there for you, like this one from 3 Wishes. Duly noted that she’s only carrying one beer stein, and a really small one, at that. Doesn’t she know that size matters with beer steins??

Dirndl costume from www.3wishes.com

3wishes.com

A couple of helpful resources from other blogs:

  • How to be Dirndl’icious: Goes nicely in depth on choosing which styles to wear, with photos of very nice dirndls in a Munich store.
  • How To Tie Your Bavarian Dirndl Apron: There’s a particular code to tying your dirndl, and where you tie the knot shows if you’re single and looking or not. Good to know for the dirndl wearer — but if the tourist guys don’t know the code, they might need to be helped out with it.

And now for the moment some of you have been waiting for: the lederhosen…

Guys in lederhosen leading cows, by Andreas Metz (Flickr)

Andreas Metz (Flickr)

Guys in lederhosen dancing, by Bonifaas (Flickr)

Bonifaas (Flickr)

Group of guys in lederhosen, by Nikki (Flickr)

Nikki (Flickr)

Guys in lederhosen in field with horses, by Machs einfach (Flickr)

Machs einfach (Flickr)

Where to buy your very own pair of leather shorts? Amazon is certainly an option:

Lederhosen outfit from amazon.com

amazon.com

Or you can skip the shorts and just thrown on a T-shirt:

Lederhosen t-shirt at amazon.com

amazon.com


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Happy Oktoberfest!

Happy Oktoberfest!

Since my new novel, Bavarian Beauty, includes a little bit about Oktoberfest, I’ll be posting about the festival and Bavaria during the days of the festival. Kinda like I posted photos of Brazilian cities during this year’s World Cup.

First up, a bit of history…

It all started with love. Well, a wedding at least — and it’s nice to hope there was love there. But you know how it is with royals, especially a long time ago when marriages may have been for alliances rather than love.

The Big Bavarian Wedding, as described at Wikipedia:

“Crown Prince Ludwig, later to become King Ludwig I, was married to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen on October 12, 1810. The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the happy royal event. The fields were named Theresienwiese (‘Theresa’s meadow’) in honor of the Crown Princess, and have kept that name ever since, although the locals have since abbreviated the name simply to the ‘Wiesn.'”

What did these love birds look like, you ask? Here’s King Ludwig I:

Ludwig I of Bavaria

Wikimedia Commons

And here’s Queen Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen:

Queen Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen:

Wikimedia Commons

Celebrating this wedding became an annual event, and Oktoberfest was born. Each year, it starts off with a bang (Wikipedia):

“Since 1950, there has been a traditional festival opening: A twelve gun salute and the tapping of the first keg of Oktoberfest beer at 12:00 by the incumbent Mayor of Munich with the cry ‘O’zapft is!’ (‘It’s tapped!’ in the Austro-Bavarian dialect) opens the Oktoberfest.”

Yes, beer (or bier) is a big part of the festival. As is the food: sausages, roast chicken, pretzels, potato dumplings, potato pancakes, sauerkraut, and much more.

How much is eaten? Vistawide.com says:

“Oktoberfest, the world’s largest beer festival, is held annually in Munich, Germany. The 16-day party attracts over 6 million people every year who consume 1.5 million gallons of beer, 200,000 pairs of pork sausage, and 480,000 spit-roasted chickens during the two-week extravaganza.”

There’s a parade honoring the one that the happy townsfolk started way back in 1810. There are lots of amusement park rides, too — it looks to me that a whole lot of fun is packed in the 16 days of the festival, starting in late September and ending on the first weekend in October.

If you’re like me, you’re wondering, why doesn’t Oktoberfest start in October? Good question. Again, let’s turn to Vistawide.com:

“The festival was eventually prolonged and moved ahead to September to allow for better weather conditions. Today, the last day of the festival is the first Sunday in October.”

But enough about descriptions! Let’s see a few pics of the festival (click on each to jump to the photographer’s webpage):

Oktoberfest general view by Michael.chlistalla/Wikimedia Commons

Michael.chlistalla (Wikimedia Commons)

Oktoberfest beer tent, by Joachim S. Müller (Flickr)

Joachim S. Müller (Flickr)

Oktoberfest Beer steins, by Thomas Sauzedde (Flickr)

Thomas Sauzedde (Flickr)

Oktoberfest musicians, by digital cat (Flickr)

digital cat (Flickr)

Oktoberfest drinkers, by xsnowdog (Flickr)

xsnowdog (Flickr)

Finally, lest we forget that this whole party started with the pairing of lovers:

Oktoberfest lovers, by Shawn Harquail (Flickr)

Shawn Harquail (Flickr)


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Fireworks

Today, I’m taking a break from the virtual tour of World Cup cities to celebrate the Fourth of July with some beautiful fireworks!

fireworks, by DanDeChiaro (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Long Beach, California, DanDeChiaro (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Fireworks, by Gregorio Cózar (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Gregorio Cózar (Flickr, Creative Commons)

fireworks, by Walter Corno Photography (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Walter Corno Photography (Flickr, Creative Commons)

fireworks, by Joy VanBuhler (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Joy VanBuhler (Flickr, Creative Commons)