August MacGregor

Celebrating Sensuality. Intended for mature audiences, 18 and over


12 Comments

May Plans

Once again, several months have passed since I last posted here. As before my previous post, I’ve been quite busy with writing, working, and family. But everyone I know is quite busy, so I’m certainly not alone with that.

One of the projects that’s been keeping me busy is River — the working title of a novel I finished writing last year, and I’ve been editing it this year. I’m pleased to say that I plan on self-publishing the novel in May. The editing process  seemed to take longer than it did, but I’ve grown to I appreciate the process of re-shaping of the story. Compared to the first draft, it’s more stream-lined and tighter. Hopefuly, making it a more enjoyable read.

I’ll give more info when the book becomes live on Amazon, as I’m still working on making it a little tighter. But it feels good to be almost finished. With the warmer temperatures of spring, it’s like the book is coming out of hibernation.

Advertisements


19 Comments

Surprises and Surprises

I’m floating on cloud nine right now because my novel is on Amazon’s bestsellers of erotica for Kindle ebooks! This past week, Tara & Steve: A Tale of Swingers entered the top 100 list at #100, and it has fluctuated around the list. This morning, it reached #84! (The list is updated hourly, so the position will definitely keep changing.)

How the hell did this happen?

I haven’t written a blog post showcasing the book, and I’ve tweeted about it a couple of times. This was far from the strategy I’ve read that authors should do, in carpeting all available social media sites to get the word out about your book.

Because once the book was published on Amazon, I felt elated about finishing it — and then I went to work on another story. That’s been my mindset of late: not blogging and promoting as much on Twitter, but focusing more on crafting stories.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m delighted that something clicked with this book. It has easily out-sold my other two novels — Bavarian Beauty and An Eager Audience: A Cuckold Erotic Romance — as well as my various novellas and short stories.

Whatever the reason, I’ve been surprised to see my book among the list of bestsellers. To put it frankly, it’s a place I didn’t imagine being. I simply hoped people would buy my books and enjoy them. Enough to someday bring in an income where I could write full time.

Here’s the cover of the book:

Tara & Steve ebook cover

Another surprise is that my book isn’t selling thousands of copies a day to get on the bestseller list. The number is actually fewer than 60 a day — when you add in the Kindle Unlimited downloads to the actual sales.

I’m thrilled to sell that many. I certainly haven’t expected to sell thousands of books a day. That atmosphere belongs to E.L. James, whose Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy looks to be firmly in the top three slots of Amazon’s erotica bestseller list.

I have to mention one other surprise here, because I’ve been scratching my head about it for a while. Every day, the most popular post on my blog is How to Talk Dirty (and Romantic) in German. It’s caused me to ask the same question: How the hell did this happen? The post is from the two weeks of Octoberfest 2014, when I blogged every day about some of the landscape, music, food, and history of Bavaria — all to promote Bavarian Beauty. Out of those posts (and all my other posts), the one on talking dirty in German stands at the top of the heap.

Maybe the post’s popularity is due to a link at streettalksavvy.com, where I got a few of the phrases. Maybe, maybe not. But while I can’t figure out the reason, I have to hope that people out there are using the list to do some sexy talking in German 🙂

Until next time, meinen Lieblings!


2 Comments

Beltane: Night of Magic & Romance

novel cover for Beltane: Night of Magic & Romance

FREE for 5 days! Starting today, you can get your hot hands on the ebook, Beltane: Night of Magic & Romance at Amazon.

This is a novella of romance and fantasy. Not necessarily a fantasy with tons of fighting, like in The Lord of the Rings. This story is much simpler and gentler than that epic trilogy.

Beltane is a Gaelic festival to celebrate fertility and the arrival of the warm season, rejoicing in the land as it awoke from the long slumber of winter. Of leaves appearing in their wondrous green. Of icy streams thawing and flowing swiftly once more, their lovely gurgling like music in the forest. Of flowers blossoming, their colors bursting with happiness, the joy of being alive once more.

On Beltane night, two bonfires were built in a field, with cattle led between the fires. Revelers — who wore crowns of intertwined flowers and herbs — danced around the bonfires and leaped over them.

And revelers emulated the union of the Goddess with the God of Beltane by joining together in coupling.

In this story, Katelyn is approached by a few men who wish to celebrate Beltane night by rolling in the woods with her. But she’s put off by their drunkenness and selfishness. So she tricks them in a way that allows her to sneak away from the two bonfires and have a rest by herself.

However, her rest is interrupted by yet another man. Shandon. Who is not like the other men in the village. He’s not cocky and sloppy from ale. Instead, he’s soft-spoken and gentle. And he appreciates Katelyn beyond simply wanting to have selfish sex with her.

But even another interruption crashes their conversation. Queen Mab — queen of the faeries — arrives on a tall horse and offers them a visit to the spirit world. A way to experience magic like they’ve never seen before.

In the spirit world, Shandon has to pass three challenges to see what he is made of, and how much he cares for Katelyn in his budding love. And with the three challenges, things get interesting — and fun 🙂

Please note: There are a couple of sex scenes in this story that include explicit descriptions. This is not erotica, as the whole story is not just about sex. Rather, it is erotic romance and fantasy. And it is meant for mature readers 18 years and older only.

Here’s a little more about the background of Beltane:

“It was a celebration of the sexual union of the God and Goddess, and the creative energies born from their love-making. These energies were thought to bless the land, animals and people, bestowing health and fertility on all. And so the people of the Celtic tribes, unencumbered by prudish morals, took the opportunity to emulate the gods and spent Beltane night in feverish coupling. According to many sources, it didn’t matter if the partners knew one another previously or not, for on that night, all women were the Goddess incarnate and all men, the God. But it wasn’t just sex; it was a holy union blessed by the gods.” (Quoted from Nicole Evelina’s Through the Mists of Time website.)

For more information about this festival, see its Wikipedia article, An Aussie Wytch’s post (which also offers advice if you wish to celebrate Beltane, too), and Nicole Evelina’s article. These were all helpful to me in my writing this story.


11 Comments

April Update

It’s been a while! I hope you’ve been well. Many weeks have gone by since I last posted on my blog — and it was quite a change going from posting every day during January and February to taking a break.

While I’ve missed posting on my blog and reading other blogs, the break has been a good one. It’s helped me get on a better track with my day job. Which has been busy, so I was relieved to take away the deadline of posting every day that I had put on myself.

Also, the break from my blog helped fine-tune my focus back onto longer stories — instead of poetry and flash fiction. And that’s been wonderful.

Because I’ve come to realize a big difference in writing flash fiction versus longer stories. Coming up with shorter pieces (fewer than 1,000 words) is neat for seeing what kind of story you can tell in a condensed amount of time. They’re fun to write.

However, you don’t get immersed in the story. Not like you do with a novella or a novel. It hit me when I made the realization that maybe it’s the reason why my short stories don’t sell very well on Amazon and Smashwords. I thought about it from a reader’s point of view, when I pick up a novel and dive into it and find out where it takes me. I like rooting for the characters and seeing what happens to them. Seeing if they change, grow, as the story unfolds.

And that’s what I’ve been missing as a writer when I focused on shorter stories. I missed connecting with the characters and pulling for them. I missed imagining the possibilities of where the story could go. Then seeing how I think the characters would react to the expanding story.

And that’s what I got back to when I returned my attention to longer stories. I was able to immerse myself in them. Like I said, it’s been wonderful. I’ve had such a good time writing a few stories — and I even managed to finish a couple.

I’ve worked on different types of stories: more romantic and sexier ones under my August pen name, as well as more vanilla stories under my real name. It’s been interesting to see that I write slower with the vanilla stuff. Nothing like the sexy scenes (or anticipation of sexy scenes) to get the fingers flying on the keyboard. Except for the dangerous stuff — like in the thriller novel on which I worked for National Novel Writing Month last November.

I’m still planning to get back to that thriller novel. Eventually!

But I’ve been wrapping other stuff up first. The big one was completing my second novel, Tara & Steve: A Tale of Swingers. This project started off several years ago as a series of short stories about a dating couple that tries out a swinging lifestyle — and the consequences that those adventures have on their relationship.

I tied together the short stories into chapters for a novel and hit it hard with my editor’s hammer. Well, that sounds too violent. More like a pen, with removing stuff here and adding stuff there. The novel is the longest story I’ve written so far, at a little more than 135,000 words. And, damn, that sucker felt good to publish.

I also finished a story that started off as a short piece last year on my blog. It had bugged me that the story wasn’t done, since the characters yearned for more than where I left them. So I expanded the story into a novella, and that’s published, too. I’ll have a post about it next week, as I’m going give the ebook away for free on Amazon for 5 days. It’s about Beltane, the Gaelic festival to celebrate fertility and the arrival of the warm season. The event comes on May 1, so I want to make the novella free leading up to that day.

The original story ran last year in two parts, and I deleted those posts because the ebook is under Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing Select (KDP Select), which means the story can’t be available electronically anywhere besides Amazon. It also means that if you have Kindle Unlimited, the story is free any time it’s within the program — well beyond the 5 days when it’s free to everybody.

So that’s an overview of what I’ve been up to since my last post. Lots of work on my day job and lots of writing. Of course, getting out and enjoying the sunshine, too 🙂

After posting next week about my Beltane novella, I’ll probably duck out again for another break. I apologize for not keeping a more regular schedule of posting. But some stories have their grip on me, and it’s really hard to stay away from them for long. I’m not sure what I’d post about if I did have a regular schedule — since I’m not going to return to writing poetry or flash fiction any time soon. I hope you understand. Writing the longer stories is like a drug that pulls me in and gives me a rush that’s amazing.


13 Comments

Eric Key’s New Story

Eric Key’s new story — Mstislav — is out, and it’s available for free at Smashwords.

Eric used to have a WordPress blog, where he talked not only about his writing, but stories from others. This support was extended to other people’s blogs, where I saw he was a frequent commenter. He also supported my writing on my blog, for which I’m grateful. It’s in this spirit of helping out a fellow indie author that I’m posting about his new story — and a couple of his other stories that are freshly available on Smashwords.

Before I get into his three ebooks, I want to say that reading them comes at an appropriate time for me. The novel I’m writing for NaNoWriMo is horror, and it was really interesting to read what another author has done within the genre.

However, Eric’s stories aren’t just horror — they’re erotic horror. So you need to know that these stories are only for readers 18 years and older, due to the explicit descriptions of sex and violence. As Eric’s warning message on his ebooks says, “This story is a work of fiction and it is intended for mature audiences. All the characters depicted in sexual situations are over the age of 18.”

The first two stories below are erotic horror, and they bring a big, walloping dose of both of those. These are not the stories for you if you want a romance with sparkly vampires. What you get instead are intense stories with scenes that come right at you, and there are things in them that I’ve never read about before. Enough to maybe make Stephen King flinch. Indeed, Eric has a very vivid imagination. These are dark stories that aren’t exactly for squeamish readers.

The third story below is erotica and contains BDSM. I’ve never read Fifty Shades of Grey, so I can’t compare Eric’s For the Glory to that popular BDSM book, but I can tell you that Eric’s story has very hot scenes. It also might be the only erotica book with a Gettier problem in it.

The blurbs for each book are under the titles. Click on the covers or titles to jump to their Smashword pages. As of today, all of these ebooks are free…
Mstislav, by Eric Keys

Mstislav

Angela is a school teacher with a double life. She thinks her secrets might get her into trouble someday, but it turns out the the secrets of one of her students and her husband are far more of a threat to the world than her dabbling in erotic writing. As things come to light Angela is drawn into a world of violence, vengeance, blood, sex and glory. You see, she’s about to meet Mstislav.

Grace and Blood, by Eric Keys
Grace and Blood

All Gracie wanted was to fulfill her passionate desire for her boss, Kevin. But when she finally makes her move she finds herself drawn into a story beyond her understanding. It’s a story of fear, blood and lust that might set fire to the world.

For the Glory, by Eric Keys
For the Glory

Sometimes it takes extraordinary measures to turn hate into love.

Ilsa was driven by rage when she met Saul. He was everything she despised, but he saw something more in her. But does he have the determination to break through Ilsa’s defenses? And more importantly, does Ilsa have the strength to let him?

Warning: There are ideas and words in here which might make you uncomfortable, but there is also plenty of hot BDSM action. And maybe there will be a happy ending.

****

One last thing: Eric’s new blog is The Blood, The Glory, and The Grace.


13 Comments

Bavarian Beauty — Novel Giveaway and Excerpt #1

Bavarian Beauty ebook cover

My first novel is out!

Before I get into a description of the novel, I want to first mention that I’m going to give away 5 copies of its ebook file — for the low, low price of FREE.

And who doesn’t like FREE??

If you’re interested, simply send me an email to augustmacgregor@gmail.com. You have until the end of the month: Tuesday, September 30. When you email me, please tell me the name that, if you do win, you’d like me to include on the post when I list the winners on October 1. You know, if you don’t want me to include your full name, you can shorten it (like R. Tigglesworth) or go with a nickname (like Mr. Cool). I’ll pick the winners by random. Seems like a fair way to go, right? At the end of September 30, I’ll take all the names of people who emailed me, and I’ll put them in a hat and pick out 5 names. Then I’ll email those 5 wildly lucky folks a coupon code so they can download the ebook from Smashwords for free.

Only send me an email if you are 18 years or older — since this is an erotic novel.

And don’t worry, I’m not going to add your email to a distribution list or anything like that. I don’t have a distribution list!

***

Now let’s get into the description of the book… here’s the blurb:

Simon Edwards has an unusual fetish. Some guys are excited by French Maids or sexy nurses, but these do nothing for Simon. He has a fetish for dirndls — the traditional dress worn by women in Bavaria, such as during Oktoberfest, and it’s the counterpart to men in lederhosen.

How did Simon’s fetish start? His first sexual experience was with a German woman who fit the blonde and busty stereotype. This experience was fused together with his love of Bavarian Beauty hot chocolate (a fictional brand), and his fetish was born.

Since Simon is only turned on by this specific dress, he endures many disappointing dates with non-dirndl wearing women as he seeks someone he clicks with. These disappointments lead him to fly to Munich during Oktoberfest to immerse himself in dirndl heaven.

But things don’t exactly go according to plan.

Simon finds out that he’s not the only one with a fetish. And he must ask himself how far he’s willing to go to deliver on someone else’s fantasy. This story is about people with desires that differ from what is considered mainstream, and their search to find someone they feel comfortable with to share those desires.

This novel (106,750 words) is mostly comprised of Simon’s entries in his journal, and a few other sections are transcripts from Simon’s sessions with his therapist to work on his fetish.

This is a work of erotic fiction and is meant for mature readers only. It contains explicit descriptions of sex (including threesomes and light BDSM), a lot of hot chocolate, Bavarian food, beer drinking, gorgeous scenery of mountains, a few leather outfits, and a creepy mannequin.

***

A little bit more about Simon: he’s single, in his mid-20s, lives in Philadelphia, grew up in Albany (NY), and works in information technology. The dating scene has been rough on him due to his very specific fetish. Because he is used to women thinking he’s crazy for having a dirndl fetish, he becomes very excited when life becomes better for him. Parts of his journal articles don’t exactly read like they’re from a calm, cool, collected guy. I liked his enthusiasm, his quick excitability when his love live improved — and when he was faced with things he didn’t plan for.

The other main character is Gretchen, and I don’t want to describe her in too much detail, for the worry of giving away too much. Here’s a little bit about her: she’s a waitress, she loves family, she’s strong as hell, and she’s got a dream to be a fashion designer.

Now for an excerpt, and this comes at the beginning. It’s part of a transcript between the main character, Simon Edwards (SE), and his therapist Dr. Karl Shafer (KS). The excerpt starts off with Simon speaking:

      Okay, let’s move on. Back to Playground Europe. I figured that I’ve tried many restaurants, so this place was next. So I drove down there. Have you ever been there?
      KS: No, I haven’t.
      SE: It’s in South Carolina. It’s one of those amusement parks where you’ve got parts for different countries. Germany, England, France, Italy, um, let’s see, and Greece and Spain. Maybe others. I can’t remember exactly. Anyway, they’ve got pubs and those red phone booths in the England part. And a fake Eiffel Tower in the France part. All that kind of stuff. You don’t have to fly all the way over to Europe, and you can see it all in one day.
      It’s all fake, sure, but you get the gist of it. I first went on a couple of rollercoasters to loosen me up. I didn’t want to rush right to it. I was so worked up at the entrance, that I needed to calm down some. The rollercoasters did the trick.
      [PAUSE]
      Then Germany.
      I figured lunch would be a good time to go. They’ve got this restaurant made up like it’s Oktoberfest all the time. Hey, Oktoberfest in July. Crazy, right? But you can get the experience without waiting for the actual Oktoberfest.
      And there she was. Not perfect like I’ve seen on some websites, but she was good. Damn good. It took lots of control not to approach her right away. I didn’t want to come off as desperate, you know? I’ve screwed up like that before.
      She had brunette hair and smaller breasts than the women on those websites that show you the ideal. But who cares? It’d be crazy to hold out for the ideal. If I did that, I’d have even more trouble than I already do.
      KS: You’d be narrowing your field even more than it is now.
      SE: Yeah, tell me about it. That’d be seriously dumb.
      So I ate my Bratwurst and potatoes and watched her. But I didn’t stare. I was careful about not staring at her. She was really busy, rushing around bringing people their food. She was good. She kept her calm while all us tourists ordered our lunch. It was fun to watch her work. The real thing is so much better than websites and movies.

***

I made up Playground Europe — there’s no amusement park by that name in South Carolina (at least not by a Google search).

Interested in reading the rest of the novel? Email me at augustmacgregor@gmail.com to try your luck in the giveaway for 5 ebooks. Or, if you simply can’t wait, you can purchase the ebook at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords (you have to click “Adult Content” in the top blue bar, all the way to the right to view these kinds of books).

***

Finally, the fine print:
Any resemblance between the characters in this novel with persons living or dead is purely coincidental. The two cover images are stock photography, and the models are used for illustrative purposes only — inclusion on the cover is not meant to imply the models’ involvement in the activities described in this story. All characters in the story are older than 18 years old and participate in consensual sex. The events described in the story should not be taken as medical advice for the treatment of a fetish. The mention of companies and products in the story should not be taken as their support of the events in the story.


8 Comments

A Novel and a Dream

It’s done! The novel for which I took a break from my blog is now published! Self published, yes, and not under a big publishing house — but this baby’s done and out there.

Bavarian Beauty is now available as an ebook from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords (you have to click “Adult Content” in the top blue bar, all the way to the right to view mature books).

I’m going to have a giveaway for 5 ebooks, but more on that in a post to come soon. Also in that post, I’ll describe the novel and include an excerpt. But first, I want to say a bit about writing this novel and its effect on me.

Before I get into all that, I want to thank you, dear reader, for your patience while I took a break from posting on my blog. Unfortunately, I will test your patience as I take more breaks here and there to write other stories.

I’m afraid that I’ve become addicted to stories, and the stories longer than the quickies that I publish here are intoxicating to write.

Finishing the novel re-invigorated my dream to become a full-time writer. Working on the novel was a rush. Not just a “this is kinda fun” type of enjoyment. Writing it was an exciting, pulse-quickening rush that I yearned to get back to when I had to take care of my day job. Yes, those bills must be paid.

That rush sparked a dream to replace my day job with writing full time. Do I think that’s realistic? I really don’t know. I’m sure it will take time, if it ever happens. I know others have dreams of becoming full-time writers, actors, musicians, artists, etc. I’ve read success stories where some dreamers have reached that goal. But I’m certainly not expecting to hit the big time like E.L. James with her Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy. I’d much rather have enough success from my stories to simply pay the bills.

In heading toward this goal of writing full time, I’m working on more stories that will become ebooks. But not just for that goal alone — because writing gives me a beautiful feeling of creating a story out of my imagination.

So, I’ll have a few more ebooks coming out in the next couple of months. Nothing as big as the novel, though. That took a long time!

I used to publish erotic stories on Ruthie’s Club, which brought together writers and illustrators to put out stories with pictures accompanying them. Sadly, Ruthie’s Club is no longer around. I miss working with the good people there, and I miss Garv’s illustrations for each week of fresh stories. Here’s a slideshow of his stuff (like Musclehead, I enjoy pin-ups).

Bavarian Beauty started as a story on Ruthie’s Club. When I revisited the story, I realized that I wanted to write more of it. I wanted to give more to the characters, and see what happened next. The short story grew into a novel during the past two years — and it was thrilling to expand the story. Then I put the novel back in the files to take a rest from it. After working on other stories, I returned to it. I read the novel twice and edited it, rewriting several sections. That brings us to now, with the novel finally published.

I’ll be diving into my dusty files to read those stories that were published on the Club and give them a new life as ebooks. That doesn’t mean they’ll grow into novels like Bavarian Beauty. Most of them will probably feel complete as shorter works.

And then, I have ideas for brand-new stories. As I worked on a few stories during my break, my brain buzzed with new ideas. However, the old saying is so true: There just ain’t enough time in the day. But I’m trying to make more time to write these stories that give me thrills.

Don’t worry that this means I won’t be publishing stories on my blog any longer. Because I will. I’ll come back to publishing some quickie, short-short stories here, along with posts when I publish a new ebook and include excerpts from it.

Also, I’ll be doing a Flickr photo tour of Oktoberfest and Bavaria, like I did with Brazil during the World Cup. It fits in with my novel. Plus, I can’t help it; researching photos is just too much fun.

Thank you for taking the time to read me going on and on like this.