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'09 Authors Insider Tips

Everything About Epublishing
by Angela James
Digital Publishing & Print
Common Myths of Epublishing
Ebook Formats and Devices

by Louisa Burton
Compelling Characters
Point of View, Part I
Point of View, Part II
Learning to Love Conflict
Story Structure
Keep ‘em Guessing
Keep it Simple
Keep Your Writing Real
The Importance of Pacing

Literary Streetwalker
by M. Christian
New World of Publishing
To Blog Or Not To Blog
Meeting & Making Friends
Thinking Beyond Sex
Selling Books
Walking the Line
e-book, e-publisher, e-fun
Still More E-book Fun

Shameless Self-Promotion
by Donna George Storey
Our Journey Begins
Pitches and Bios
Websites, Blogs & Readers
Publicists, Press Kits and...
Viva the Internet
Adventures in Cyberspace
Promoting In the Flesh
Make Your Own Movie
Bigger is Better
Looking Back, Planning Ahead

Two Girls Kissing
by Amie M. Evans
Questions to Ask Yourself...
Tough All Over

The Write Stuff
by Ashley Lister
Practice Makes Prefect
5 Books for Fiction Authors
Poetry In Motions
Six Serving Men
Ashley Lister is Anal
Stealing Ideas
Celebrating Poetry

2009 Smutters Lounge

Ashley Lister Submits
by Ashley Lister

Cooking Up A Storey
by Donna George Storey
A Year of Living Shamelessly
Adultery, Exhibitionism ...
John Updike Made Me Do It ...
Story Soup: Forbidden ...
Lessons from Amazon
Naked Lunches ...
Erotic Alchemy
Secrets of Seduction
Are You a “Real” Writer?
Don’t Fondle My Sentence

Cracking Foxy
with Robert Buckley
The Passionate Taphophile
Havens on Earth
A Knight Without Armor
Magic Carpet Rides
Getting Hammered
Keep It Quiet
Hang Around for a Spell

Get All Worked Up
with J.T. Benjamin
Worked Up About Why
Worked Up About Why, Part II
All Worked Up About Porn
The Catholic Church
Purity Movement
The National Crisis
The Future
About Homosexuality
Public Indiscretions

Pondering Porn
with Ann Regentin
Premature Ejaculation
Auctioning Off What?

Sex Is All Metaphors
by Jean Roberta
Who's Who Around the Table
Ritual Sex
Mixed Legacy
The Spectrum of Consent
Drawing the Line
Marriage without the Hype
The Distracting Smirk
Innocent Guns
Gardens of Earthly Delights

Provocative Interviews

Between the Lines
with Ashley Lister
Anneke Jacob
D L King
Kristina Lloyd
Lisabet Sarai
Mitzi Szereto
Portia Da Costa
Shanna Germain
Sommer Marsden
Susan DiPlacido

Guest Appearances

Marketing a Self-Published Novel
by Jeanne Ainslie

Cooking up a Storey

by Donna George Storey

A Year of Living Shamelessly:
Hustlers, Exhibitionists and the Libidinous Magic of the Ordinary


Cooking up a Storey by Donna George Storey I’ve already started getting ready for the orgy.

I’ve made up the guest list—seventeen this year, not including my husband and me, with, as is customary at these events, more female participants than male.  I scope out the stores for the necessary supplies, many of which conveniently go on sale in November.  And it’s never too early to start freezing containers of homemade soup in anticipation of the madness of orgy week that allows no time for anything as pedestrian as cooking dinner.

I’ve been doing my orgy thing for five years now.  It all started the same year I discovered the path to sensual healing I described last December in my maiden column for “Cooking up a Storey.” [Naughty Cookies and Sugar Walls] Every December since, I’ve pursued my goal of turning on friends and acquaintance to the point of weak-kneed salivation with ever increasing creativity and fervor, showing off shamelessly for a dozen-plus people, basking in the compliments without the slightest show of modesty.  In fact, this former still-waters-run-deep girl boldly replies with an offer to strut my stuff all over again next year!

Looking back over a very eventful 2008, I see that my December orgy was excellent preparation for the ordeal of promoting my novel, Amorous Woman, which dominated and even transformed my life.  But after ten columns here at the Smutters Lounge, I’m sure my loyal readers will guess I’m not going to make that connection completely obvious for you quite yet.  It’s always better to make your partner wait for the ultimate satisfaction.  Especially at orgies.

Now, for those readers who may be new to my tricks, I’ll let you in on the secret.  The kind of orgy I’m hinting at isn’t about untrammeled sexual indulgence—well, not completely anyway.  It has to do with another appetite that seems to wax with the waning sunlight, but is as old as the erotic urge itself.  I’m talking about my four-day frenzy of cooking up my famous collection of winter solstice cookies.

Baking special treats at the winter solstice is a long-standing custom throughout the world, but of course it is up to each artist to make the tradition his or her own.  My mother had her own selection of specialties—thin, melting slivers of Swedish nut cookies, round, sugar-dusted Russian tea cakes, toothsome and addictive chocolate crispies that needed an oven-side vigil to prevent burning, coconut macaroons made with condensed milk and decorated with a morsel of red or green candied cherry.  I remember, too, the cookie spreads that other moms would offer at Christmastime visits, all so alluring in their exotic difference from our family classics. 

For many years of my adult life, I contented myself with baking the X-rated sugar cookies my husband and I would bake one festive night in mid-December (and yes, sex was definitely involved in that celebration).  But my wonder at the skill and artistry of the solstice baker was kept alive by the efforts of my oldest friend who would send me a tin of her Christmas treats every December.

To be honest, my husband and I took shameless pleasure in that box of cookies, which contained two samples each of over a dozen different kinds of classic European cookies.  For several delightful nights, we’d allow ourselves to sample three or four different types, enjoying the thrill of selecting the particular indulgences as much as the eating of them.  Several of my friend’s cookies were made from old family recipes from Holland like Jan Hagels and Speculaas, but other exotic species crept in—Nanaimo bars from Canada or biscotti from Italy.  Over the years I convinced my friend to surrender a few of the recipes and occasionally attempted to try one out in my own kitchen.  However, it was only during my year of baking therapy that I decided to tackle the challenge of making up gift boxes of several kinds all at once.

The critics loved it and clamored for more.


Over the years I’ve added some practical planning to my art.  I stock up on super-fresh pecans and walnuts from Sunnyland Farms and order multiple cans of high-quality almond paste from King Arthur Flour in advance of the holiday rush.  I keep an eye out for sales on Bonne Maman apricot and raspberry jam, Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate bars and white chocolate chips (I’m sure other brands are fine, too, but tradition reigns in these matters at Christmas time!)  I buy four, yes, FOUR, pounds of good organic butter and go through a whole dozen eggs.  And this is just for the six regular types of cookies in my repertory.  I always try out one or two new recipes each year to add some variety to the jumble of sweet things.  (The Venetians are at the far left in the photo).

The total effort involves more than baking, of course.  There’s the literary issue of the annual brochure I include with each gift.  This is a key part of the process for any writer-baker.  For me, reading about a food adds tremendously to the pleasure of eating (not unlike the way erotica enhances the satisfaction of physical sexual appetites). I give my cookie boxes to people who’ve been sweet to me in the past year and none have been sweeter than the readers of this column.  In fact, if you lived nearby, I’d be delivering your very own box to you one chilly night in mid-December.  I’d be a bit wild-eyed and my clothes would be dusted with flour, but I’d be wearing a big smile of shameless pride.  And I’d squirm with pleasure at your compliments!

Here is last year’s food porn insert, which I hope will be provide some satisfaction without the consequent calories!


A Winter Solstice Selection of Sweets:

Venetians—Italian flag-tinted cake layers with apricot jam and bittersweet chocolate

Gevulde Speculaas—Dutch spice bar cookies with marzipan filling

Yin-yang Cookies—vanilla cookie dough with chocolate chips marries chocolate cookie dough with white chocolate chips

Chewy Pecan Squares—pecan caramel filling on a shortbread crust

Ribbon Cookies—layers of cherry, pistachio and chocolate cookie dough

Finnish Spoon Cookies—browned butter dough shaped with a silver spoon my grandmother received as a wedding gift in 1919 and sandwiched with mixed fruit jam

I know some cooks are bound by family honor to guard their solstice cookie recipes with their lives, but I’m happy to share mine for any of the above and even a few new additions such as the Australian crystallized gingersnaps—so send me an email if you’re interested in more.  However, for this year’s December column, I’ve decided to pass along the secrets to making the headliner cookie known as Venetians. Of all the cookies I bake, these require the most dedication.   Like adventurous sex, and erotica writing itself, the Venetian adventure is not for the fainthearted!

Making the batter is marginally more complex than your average cookie, but then comes the tricky part.  You have to divide the batter evenly among three 9” x 13” pans to make three very thin layers. You then have to tint one pan’s worth of batter pink and another green, stirring in the coloring carefully so there are no streaks. After they bake and cool, you layer them with strained apricot jam (sometimes the layers break, but can be patched), let them sit overnight and apply a final coating of melted bittersweet chocolate. When the chocolate sets, you carefully cut them into tiny squares to be savored with tea or coffee.

The final result is worth all the effort, though. The pleasure itself is layered—the almost unbelievably intricate ribbons of the moist, tricolor almond cakes, the hint of sweet jam, the faintly bitter richness of the chocolate. It’s not unlike making love to a partner with whom you have a long, rich history or writing a story you care about enough to labor over for weeks, months, years.  In the end, although it is nothing more than a cookie, it is also the quintessential example of what I’d call “the libidinous magic of the ordinary.”  There’s no better way to bring light to the darkest days of winter.

Incidentally, I sampled an almost crunchy commercial version of Venetian at an Italian bakery in New York City when I was there in October for my book tour for Amorous Woman, and they were surprisingly tasty, but nothing like the moist, delicate version I bake.  If you’re into baking orgies, and perhaps a bit of masochism, I heartily recommend this recipe for pure sensual indulgence.

In fact, Venetians have actually been the focus on an erotic story I wrote for Rachel Kramer Bussel’s Sex and Candy called “Six Layers of Sweetness.”  Flush with my December immodesty, I’ll quote from one of the most gastro-masturbatory “good parts” right here:

Laura took a can of almond paste from the cupboard, a brand she ordered specially from a gourmet catalog, and spooned out eight ounces onto the kitchen scale, then tipped it into the food processor.  This was her own inspired addition to a recipe she’d begged from a Dutch friend almost a decade before.  It made the almond paste light and feathery, no lumps to weigh down the tiny cake layers, so delicate they rose no more than a quarter-inch high.  She must have baked these cookies dozens of times over the years, and she’d assembled a long list of tricks to ensure success.  Still there was always a pang of doubt when she set about on a new batch.  Could she perform her sorcery yet again—take ordinary flour and butter and eggs and make them into something transcendent?

Making Venetians was rather like making love (ah, yes, sex again, what they said about randy widows was too true).  Much of it was routine, a predictable intertwining of limbs and naughty pink parts. Yet in spite of years of experience, disaster lay in wait for any slip, a single moment of complacency or inattention….  Laura felt her face relax into a smile as she began creaming the butter, the European kind with extra butterfat.  This was the easy part, familiar as taking your husband’s cock between your lips as you stroked him, just behind the balls, to bring forth that delectable little groan.  Slowly she shook in the sugar, spring snow melting quickly on the fluffy, pale yellow mountains of batter.  Next came the four egg yolks and a teaspoon of almond extract, colorless but surprisingly potent, filling the kitchen with the scent of an almond grove in bloom.  Yes, she had done this dozens of times.

Sex, food and writing.  As I promised in my first “Cooking up a Storey” column last December, those three topics will get me going any time, any place.  As the year draws to a close, I hope you enjoyed peeping in on my ménage à trois musings of 2008 and perhaps even tried out a few of my recipes with pleasurable results.  I’m planning to continue this column in the coming year because I have so many more good recipes to share, but I’m also going to be starting a new column over in “Authors’ Insider Tips.” 

Actually, I’m conceiving this new effort as more of an informal chat—over some Venetians perhaps?—about my experiences promoting my novel this past year.  I hope it will be helpful for other writers to retrace the journey of a newbie who learned to put herself and her work out there one painful step at a time.  My transformation from diffident good girl to shameless hustler proved to be confusing, crazy, and even a bit masochistic, but the morsels of reward were as sweet as the thank-you notes I get for a box of my winter solstice cookies.  So I’m off to bake a batch of Venetians for us to share and hope to see you at my kitchen table for some intimate talk about the truth of the book hustling life next February.

In the meantime, may 2009 bring lots of delicious sex, well-crafted food, and mind-blowing writing to you all!

Venetians: A Cookie for Shameless Show-offs

1 can (8 ounces) almond paste                   10 drops green food coloring
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened        8 drops red food coloring
1 cup granulated sugar                               1 jar (12 oz.) apricot preserves
4 eggs, separated                                         4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt

Grease three 13x9x2 inch pans. (Yes, you’ll need three, if you’re serious about doing the job right.  Get some inexpensive non-stick pans at a local discount store and store them away for the higher purpose of bringing pleasure to many one bite at a time).  Line with wax paper.  Grease again.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Break up almond paste in a large bowl with a fork or whirl in food processor with a few tablespoons of the sugar until fluffy.  Pour into mixing bowl.  Add butter, the rest of the sugar, egg yolks, and almond extract.  Beat with electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Stir in flour and salt.

Beat egg whites in a separate bowl with electric mixer until stiff peaks form.  Fold into almond mixture with a spatula.

Measure out 1 1/2 cups batter and spread evenly in one of the prepared pans.  To keep the layers even I drop Tablespoons of batter evenly over the pan and smooth it out with an offset spatula.  Air pockets can be a problem, so rap the pan twice on a table when you are finished.  Remove another 1 1/2 cups batter to a separate bowl and add the green food coloring; spread evenly in the second prepared pan.  Add red food coloring to the remaining batter and spread in the last pan.

Bake the green layer for 6 minutes, then turn pan and bake for another 7 minutes or just until edges are golden brown.  Do not overcook.  Run an offset spatula around the edges to loosen.  While first layer cools, bake the yellow and pink layers.  Again turn cakes halfway through the baking process.  Cakes will be about 1/4 inch thick. 

Turn the green pan over directly onto jellyroll pan covered with wax paper as it has a tendency to stick.  Cover empty pan with fresh waxed paper and place it over the yellow layer.  Turn it over so that it rests on the bottom of the empty pan.  Repeat with next pan.  This makes it easier to slide the layers onto each other.)  Remove wax paper from bottoms.  Cool thoroughly.

Heat apricot preserves; strain into a glass measuring cup.  Spread 1/2 of the warm preserves over green layer to the edges.  Slide yellow layer on top (you will have to loosen it from the top of the pan with a long, sharp knife as it may stick.  Spread with remaining apricot preserves.  Loosen pink layer with a knife and slide it, right side up, onto yellow layer.

Cover with plastic wrap and weight down with a large cutting board to which you add a heavy pot lid.  Place in refrigerator overnight.

The next day, remove the cookies from the refrigerator to warm to room temperature.  Melt chocolate over hot water in a bowl or cup.  Spread to the edges of the cake with an offset spatula.  Let harden briefly so it is still soft, but not liquid.  Trim edges off cake—these make fun snacks for the cook and helpers.  Cut the cookies into one-inch squares.  If the chocolate is too hard on a cold winter morning, dip your knife in warm water first, wipe it dry, and it will glide through the chocolate.  You can also turn one-inch columns sideways to cut into bite-size pieces—the chocolate will not crack as easily this way.

Store the cookies in an airtight container or tin at room temperature.  They keep well for about a week.

Serve your Venetians on a fancy plate as befits the effort you put into their creation.  Then sit back and enjoy the compliments!

Donna George Storey
December '08 - January '09

Donna is Cooking up a Storey in ERWA 2008 Archive.

"Cooking up a Storey" © 2008 Donna George Storey. All rights reserved. Content may not be copied or used in whole or part without written

About the Author:  Donna George Storey taught English in Japan and Japanese in the United States and has finally found the work of her dreams writing erotica. If you’re really nice, she’ll bake you a batch of her Venetian cookies, with layers of marzipan, jam and chocolate, that take a ridiculous amount of time to make and are (almost) better than sex. Her work has been published in dozens of journals and anthologies including Clean Sheets, Fishnet, Best American Erotica, Best Women’s Erotica and Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica.
Her first novel, Amorous Woman—a semi-autobiographical tale of an American woman’s love affair with Japan, Japanese food and lots of sexy men and women along the way—was published by Neon/Orion. It’s currently available at Amazon and Amazon UK, and from her web site,
For more of her musings on sensual pleasure and creativity stop by her blog:  Sex, Food and Writing. You can also take a quick trip to Japan with Donna's provocative Amorous Woman book trailer at:

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'09 Movie Reviews

Blame It On Savanna
Review by Byrdman

Cry Wolf
Review by Spooky

Review by Spooky

Heaven or Hell
Review by Oranje

House of Wicked
Review by Diesel

The Office: An XXX Parody
Review by Spooky

This Ain't The Partridge Family
Review by Spooky

'09 Book Reviews


A Slip of the Lip (ebook)
Review by Jean Roberta

Best Women's Erotica '09
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Bottoms Up
Review by Ashley Lister

Enchanted Again
Review by Victoria Blisse

Review by Kathleen Bradean

Girls on Top
Review by Ashley Lister

In Sleeping Beauty’s Bed
Review by Ashley Lister

Libidacoria (Poetry)
Review by Ashley Lister

Licks & Promises
Review by Ashley Lister

Like a Thorn (ebook)
Review by Lisabet Sarai

The Mile High Club
Review by Ashley Lister

Nexus Confessions: Vol 5
Review by Victoria Blisse

Nexus Confessions 6
Review by Victoria Blisse

Oysters & Chocolate
Review by Kristina Wright

Playing with Fire
Review by Ashley Lister

Sexy Little Numbers Vol 1
Review by Ashley Lister

Up for Grabs
Review by Lisabet Sarai


A 21st Century Courtesan
Review by Donna G. Storey

The Ages of Lulu
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Amanda’s Young Men
Review by Kristina Wright

As She's Told
Review by Ashley Lister

Bedding Down
Review by Victoria Blisse

Review by Ashley Lister

Brushes & Painted Dolls
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Cassandras Chateau
Review by Ashley Lister

The Edge of Impropriety
Review by Kristina Wright

Review by Kathleen Bradean

Free Pass
Review by Ashley Lister

The Gift of Shame
Review by Victoria Blisse

Kiss It Better
Review by Ashley Lister

The Melinoe Project
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Mortal Engines & The ...
Review by Ashley Lister

The New Rakes
Review by Ashley Lister

Ninety Days of Genevieve
Review by Victoria Blisse

Obsession: An Erotic Tale
Review by Kristina Wright

Sarah's Education
Review by Ashley Lister

Seduce Me
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Lesbian Erotica

Lesbian Cowboys
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Night's Kiss
Review by Jean Roberta

Where the Girls Are
Review by Jean Roberta

Gay Erotica

Animal Attraction 2
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Boys in Heat
Review by Vincent Diamond

Review by Lisabet Sarai

The Low Road
Review by Jean Roberta

Personal Demons
Review by Jean Roberta

Ready to Serve
Review by Vincent Diamond

The Secret Tunnel
Review by Kathleen Bradean

Review by Kathleen Bradean

Review by Vincent Diamond


Best Sex Writing '09
Review by Kristina Wright

The Big Penis Book
Review by Rob Hardy

Erotic Encounters
Review by Rob Hardy

The Forbidden Apple
Review by Rob Hardy

Hollywood’s Censor
Review by Rob Hardy

Lady in Red
Review by Rob Hardy

Licentious Gotham: Erotic...
Review by Rob Hardy

Live Nude Elf
Review by Rob Hardy

Live Nude Girl
Review by Rob Hardy

The Other Side of Desire
Review by Rob Hardy

Scripts 4 Play
Review by Ashley Lister