Jean Roberta once promised her parents not to use their unusual family name for her queer and erotic writing, and thus was born her thin-disguise pen name. She teaches English and Creative Writing in a university on the Canadian prairies, where the vastness of land and sky encourage daydreaming.
Jean immigrated to Canada from the United States as a teenager with her family. In her last year of high school, she won a major award in a national student writing contest. In 1988, a one-woman publisher in Montreal published a book of Jean’s lesbian stories, Secrets of the Invisible World. When the publisher went out of business, the book went out of print.
In the same year, Jean attended the Third International Feminist Book Fair in Montreal, where she read a call-for-submissions for erotic lesbian stories. She wrote three, sent them off, and got a letter saying that all three were accepted. Then the publisher went out of business.
In 1998, Jean and her partner acquired their first computer. Jean looked for writers’ groups and found the Erotic Readers & Writers Association, which was then two years old! She began writing erotica in every flavor she could think of (f/f, m/f, m/m, f/f/m, etc) and in various genres (realistic contemporary, fantasy, historical). Her stories have appeared in anthology series such as Best Lesbian Erotica (2000, 2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, Volume 1 in new series, 2016), Best Lesbian Romance (2014), and Best Women’s Erotica (2000, 2003, 2005, 2006) from Cleis Press, as well as many others.
Her single-author books include Obsession (Renaissance, Sizzler Editions), an erotic story collection, The Princess and the Outlaw: Tales of the Torrid Past (Lethe Press), and The Flight of theBlack Swan: A Bawdy Novella (Lethe, also in audio).
Fantasy stories by Jean include “Lunacy” in Journey to the Center of Desire (erotic stories based on the work of Jules Verne), forthcoming from Circlet Press 2017, “Green Spectacles and Rosy Cheeks” (steampunk erotica) in Valves & Vixens 3 (House of Erotica, UK, 2016), and “Under the Sign of the Dragon” (story about the conception of King Arthur) in Nights of the Round Table: Arthurian Erotica (Circlet 2015). This story is now available from eXcessica (http://excessica.com). Her horror story, “Roots,” first published in Monsters from Torquere Press, is now in the Treasure Gallery of the Erotic Readers and Writers Association. With Lethe Press publisher Steve Berman, she coedited Heiresses of Russ2015 (Lethe), an annual anthology of the year’s best lesbian speculative fiction.
Jean has written many reviews and blog posts. Her former columns include “Sex Is All Metaphors” (based on a line in a poem by Dylan Thomas) for the Erotic Readers and Writers Association, July 2008-November 2010. The 25 column pieces can still be found in the on-site archives and in an e-book from Coming Together, www.eroticanthology.com She currently posts on the ten-writer site “Oh Get a Grip,” and once a month on the Erotic Readers and Writers Association blog.
Jean married her long-term partner, Mirtha Rivera, on October 30, 2010.
by Jean Roberta Queers Were Here: Heroes and Icons of Queer Canada, edited by Robin Ganev and R.J. Gilmour (Windsor, Ontario: Biblioasis, 2016) This book is a charming little anthology in which a group of “queer” Canadians answers the question: Who were your role... read more
by Jean Roberta My actual posting date was March 26, but my post wasn’t ready then, and someone else’s post conveniently appeared. I hope I can slide this into an available date. One aspect of sexually-explicit fiction that doesn’t seem to be discussed... read more
by Jean Roberta The introduction of sex in a work of fiction can feel problematic for several reasons: sex has traditionally been considered “unspeakable,” something that can’t and shouldn’t be described in detail, at least in the social mainstream, and sex is... read more
by Jean Roberta Over the years, I’ve read a lot of advice on how to write, what to write, and how to promote it. Some of that advice has been contradictory, while some of it might have been brilliantly relevant to current trends, and for particular writers who are not... read more
by Jean Roberta ‘Tis the season when other obligations take time away from writing. I had good intentions of writing this post a week ago, but shopping, cleaning, decorating, and cooking with my spouse, plus socializing with other people, took over most of the time.... read more
by Jean Roberta So much has been said (even here in Canada) about the election of Donald Trump as President of the U.S. that I can’t think of anything new to add on a political level. However, let’s consider how government by the “alt.-right” (loosely defined as a... read more
by Jean Roberta Halloween is approaching, and this means (according to some) that the veil between this world and the next is growing thin. For the ancient Celts, October 31 (or approximately this date in their own calendar) was called Samhain (pronounced sow-in), and... read more
by Jean Roberta Is erotica a genre unto itself, or does the term just refer to sex scenes that could appear in any work of fiction? Most book-length works of “erotica” can also be classified as something else, and since words that refer to sex can result in books... read more
by Jean Roberta My original plan for this post was to discuss words for sex acts and sex organs, as did Lisabet Sarai earlier this month. Context is very important to me, and this is why some of the shorter pieces that have been posted in ERWA Storytime make me... read more
by Jean Roberta I’ve been pondering the word “metronormativity” ever since I reviewed a diverse collection of essays, Queering the Countryside, for The Gay & Lesbian Review. The word is used throughout the book, and it looks parallel to... read more