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These notes were made in 1993 You would not have believed the silly song and dance I went through with myself to get a copy of this anthology of sexually explicit short fiction about gay men Determined not to cross the threshold of Glad Day myself why would I turn into a pumpkin I dropped mention of it into conversation with all my gay friends until eventually one took pity on me and gave it to me for Christmas In the event, it proved only intermittently satisfying, and much of it was These notes were made in 1993 You would not have believed the silly song and dance I went through with myself to get a copy of this anthology of sexually explicit short fiction about gay men Determined not to cross the threshold of Glad Day myself why would I turn into a pumpkin I dropped mention of it into conversation with all my gay friends until eventually one took pity on me and gave it to me for Christmas In the event, it proved only intermittently satisfying, and much of it was surprisingly familiar The marquee name on the cover, and one of the only two women writers represented, is Anne Rice, finding a place to publish two chapters dropped from her novel Exit to Eden These chapters are actuallyin the vein of her Roquelaure stuff, in my opinion, than the rather dismaying tendency of the novel overall towards the mainstream, towards maturity , towards heterosexuality, away from S M games, away from gay sex Anyway, the chapters were moderately exciting to discover The Hollinghurst contribution was an excerpt from The Swimming Pool Library, which I read recently, tho alas I didn t get around to reviewing it Edmund White was also represented by a couple of excerpts sex scenes, of course from longer published works, where, despite the usual immediacy and unusualness of the sensual metaphors and similes, I felt the lack of context hurt the writing somewhat, and made it seem closer to the art less run of the mill paperback porn than it would have been had the characters already been alive from elsewhere in the story The most striking, and certainly the most disturbing item in the collection was a short story by Steven Saylor Aaron Travis , called Blue Light Explicit S M, this is also fantasy fiction of the most visceral kind, for the masochist who is also the narrator is by some magical means decapitated and castrated, thus becoming entirely dependent on his captor quite literally for his reintegration The psychological reverberations even for a woman reader who cannot quite, I think, comprehend the full gut horror of the fear of castration are immense and fascinating Having read it through once for its uneasy but strong stimulation value, one then immediately wants to reread it to find out exactly what is going on, what it all means The last story I d like to single out is not so complex in terms of layers, but it appeals to me, inevitably, because of the gender bender aspect This is the only other story in the book by a woman, Belonging , by Pat Califia 2010 Califia has since transitioned to male , and interestingly enough, along with Rice s contributions, it is the most straightforwardly and ferociously S M story in the collection An accident, a reflection of Preston s tastes, or a clue in that never ending puzzle of what makes a certain and distinct segment of womankind so fascinated with male male encounters This one is about self knowledge, and though 3rd person, is very much from the point of view of a casually contemptuous self identified straight male, who is kidnapped and cowed by another man into realizing where he belongs in both the sense of fitting in, and of being owned The captor is also the brother of a woman who wants revenge, who has been at once dominatrix of and despised by the captured man, and much of the climactic pun intended action happens in her shadow, as it were, as the captor runs home movies of the woman and his prisoner But just as the captive finally realizes on the most fundamental level that he wants a man, not a woman, so too the projector runs out, leaving the truth the two men together exposed in the bright white light It s an interesting image, and theso for having been written by a woman I was not overly impressed by the quality of the writing in the collection generally, though the items I have mentioned were the exceptions I was also fairly bored by the emphasis, which seems to be fairly common in the gay community, on teenage sexuality and early self discovery Some of the best parts are Preston s introductions to the sections My favorites Samuel M Steward s Correspondence with George Platt Lynes fascinating, Workout by Roy F Wood, A Cowboy Christmas by Lars Eighner, The Shirt by Robin Metcalfe, Blue Light from Steven Saylor as Aaron Travis probably the scariest erotica ever written , Belonging by Pat Califa, Safe Sex Without Condoms by John Wagenhauser. Some of it is sexy, some of it is amusing, some of it is odd, some of it is well written, some of it is is not. To begin, I must let you know I have a bias towards anthologies, collections, and series of things Besides, ya know, gay sex Evidently I enjoyed most of the stories, and the straightforwardness of good ol porn while not always going straight for the head My favorites were the oft cited Blue Light by Steven Saylor s nick The mix of intense power exchange, and the closest story i ve seen that took on some supernatural theme had me completely hooked Still, how far they went was kind of, like, To begin, I must let you know I have a bias towards anthologies, collections, and series of things Besides, ya know, gay sex Evidently I enjoyed most of the stories, and the straightforwardness of good ol porn while not always going straight for the head My favorites were the oft cited Blue Light by Steven Saylor s nick The mix of intense power exchange, and the closest story i ve seen that took on some supernatural theme had me completely hooked Still, how far they went was kind of, like, wowzers Anne Rice s piece was great, mainly because I liked how Elliot was chasing after a woman but enjoyed men as well That aside, I read an awful lot of romanticized gay fiction geared towards females So it was nice, one, to get plenty of manly views quote, unquote , and, two, to see that they are not utter nonpoetic, filthy awful prose trash you see so often on the internet I have the other three and an working through the second Guess which story has already imprinted itself on my mind ( Download Book ) ♼ Flesh and the Word: An Anthology of Erotic Writing ☩ In an era of changing attitudes, this ground breaking anthology offers an exciting selection of gay erotic writing from the early days of pulp paper and underground distribution to today s imaginatively provocative writing While providing a fascinating look at the course of gay consciousness over the past fifty years, it also, most enthrallingly, offers the best sexually arousing fiction centering on gay menFeaturing two original tales by Anne Rice, this elegantly written collection also includes such literary luminaries as Edmund White and Alan Hollinghurst, and such legendary cult figures as Larry Townsend and Pat Califia The stories here range from the nonphysical but highly charged Brian s Bedroom by Leigh Rutledge, to the famous, boundary pushing story Blue Light by Aaron Travis a fantasic, haunting piece that explores reversal, compulsion, domination, and otherness in a Texas boarding house But whether an understated gem or an unforgettable, flamboyant display of sexuality, each of these works has a power of its own, while editor John Preston s commentary places them all in context This collection of short fiction and nonfiction is for both gay and straight readers who enjoy masterully written erotica It is at once a cross section of fine erotic writing, a chronical of gay male sexuality and its growing influence on the culture at large, and an imporatnt addiction to gay literatureContents Correspondence with George Platt Lynes by Samuel M StewardThe sergeant with the rose tattoo by Samuel M Steward writing as Phil AndrosFrom Cruising horny corners by Clay Caldwell writing as Lance LesterWorkout by Roy F WoodPeekers by TR Witomski writing as Ray WaldheimThey call me Horsemeat by DV Sadero writing as Rick LaneA cowboy Christmas by Lars EighnerThe shirt by Robin MetcalfeNegative image by Michael Lassell writing as Michael LewisBrian s bedroom by Leigh RutledgeBlue light by Steven Saylor writing as Aaron TravisGetting Timchenko by Steven Saylor writing as Aaron TravisBelonging by Pat CalifiaElliott the garden and the bar by Anne RiceElliott below stairs by Anne RiceFrom Run little leather boy by Larry Townsend Malory s big brother from The green hotel stories by Gordon HobanFrom A boy s own story by Edmund WhiteFrom The beautiful room is empty by Edmund White The Brutus cinema from The swimming pool library by Alan Hollinghurst Mmmmpfgh by Andrew HolleranThinking off by Scott O Hara writing as SpunkSafe sex without condoms by John WagenhauserSoggy Biscuit by Barry LoweThe reality of a dream by W Delon StrodeThe group by John Wagenhauser writing as WolfgangGood with words by Stephen Greco