10 Aug '12

BDSM Event Day Nine – Not Every Dom has a Helicopter by By Reggie and kasi Alexander

Posted in Events, Uncategorized / 17 Comments

Welcome to Day Nine of the BDSM Appreciation Event here at Scorching Book Reviews. So far we still have the BDSM Blog Hop which you can enter here,the wonderful Kele Moon giving away her Eden series,the lovely Cari Silverwood giving away a bookJoely Sue Burkhart giving away her latest release, Eve Berlin giving away the first book in a wonderful seriesSherri Hayes giving away a copy of Need, there’s a giveaway on Eliza Gayles post and the marvelous Bridget Midway is also hosting a giveaway. Just Click on the Links to play along.

Remember to use the Rafflecopter form or follow any additional instructions you will not be entered.

Today, I am really happy to be introducing you to Reggie and kasi Alexander, a Top and bottom who have started to take steps into the world of publishing using their experiences. I think this article is one of the best that I have for the event…..

It doesn’t matter if you lust after the quiet and reserved Mr. Grey and the blushing virgin Ana or wish to see them ripped limb from limb by a pack of wild werewolves, as all good Edward and Bella clones should be. You have to admit that no other single title has done more for bringing the lifestyles of BDSM and power exchange into the hearts and minds of the world.  Yes, I know there are three books in the series but let’s face it, the rock star that started the tsunami of popularity was the original “Fifty Shades of Grey.”  This series has allowed the average person a glimpse, however distorted and misinformed, into the lifestyles that we live and love.  

Ms. James has brought a much fictionalized fantasy version of a Master/slave BDSM love story to the Kindles and bookshelves of over 31 million households worldwide.  Her books have made the New York Times bestsellers lists for months, an amazing feat for an erotic romance story.  Now that the doors have been blown wide open there is an opportunity for the rest of us to really step up our games and show the world in responsible storytelling style the other side of the coin. 

Fantasy BDSM power exchange stories obviously have their place.  Let’s face it, the opportunity to escape and live vicariously through the characters in our books is a major reason people read romance.  Sure, it is not the only reason but it is a compelling one and the more mentally, emotionally or sexually damaged the hero/heroine the more exciting the transformation of the character is to watch.  Unfortunately, in real life not all of us are billionaire helicopter flying Doms or 21 year old virgins willing to dive headfirst into alternative relationships. 

Most of us are hardworking, normal people who have experienced life a bit and found our identity in the world through exploration, communication and education.  It doesn’t matter if that identity is Master, slave, Dominant, submissive, Top, bottom, gay, straight, bi, Trans, or just curious. We know who we are on the inside and are not afraid, at least within the safety of our community, to live that lifestyle.  So, for those of us who choose to write more realistic BDSM romance stories, it is imperative that we show that our Masters and slaves can be normal people and still fulfill the role required.

It is wonderful in our opinion that the wide world in general is finally starting to accept their innate curiosity about the sexier aspects of BDSM and power exchange.  As those of us who live these lifestyles learned long ago, these are not new concepts.  The idea of helping those who look to us as their Master, Mistress or Dominant, to be more than they would on their own is hardly a new idea.  It is a path we can explore in our quest for greater personal, spiritual and yes, even professional growth.  For us, we used the power exchange dynamic to help us each reach the lifelong goal of becoming published authors.  We used the Master/slave frame work to refine our self-discipline and accountability to accomplish our writing. We had not been successful in doing so without the benefit of skills learned in this lifestyle and now we are four novels deep and wondering why we ever waited so long.

One of the impressions that is often voiced is that to be a submissive you had to be weak, naïve or incapable of running your own life.  This is an unfortunate stereotype that must be corrected.  Just because someone identifies as a slave or submissive does not mean they are weak, stupid, spineless or any of the other negative things people assume.  It does not mean that they are any less capable than anyone else; in fact, the opposite is generally true.  Our slaves and submissives are the true backbone of the community.  They are hardworking, capable, intelligent, service oriented men and women who get the work done.  They derive a satisfaction and sense of purpose through their service to their Masters and Mistresses as well as others.

Photo by Arhadetruit 
Shared under Attribution License
This is where fantasy and reality often collide in a brutal clash of misinformation and misunderstanding.  In fantasy the slave is often portrayed as young, naive, inexperienced in the ways of the world and in need of an overbearing, unfeeling alpha to tell them what to do and how to do it or they would be a helpless mess.  This alpha tells them what to wear, what to think, and what to feel. They have no responsibility in the world since the Dom has taken their free will from them and replaced it with his own.  Not only is this patently untrue but it is insulting to both sides of the power exchange relationship.  It may be true that the slave has negotiated that their Master has the right to decide some or all of those things but it is not because they couldn’t make those decisions.  They have willingly chosen to allow their Dominant to make those decisions, freeing them to concentrate on the tasks they have agreed to be responsible for and thus accomplishing more than they would otherwise.

Many things are taken with artistic license in the realm of fantasy BDSM stories.  One of these is the concept of punishment, which is often confused in the stories with play.  It is important for the more true to life stories to show and explain that while, punishment is a very real part of the lifestyle, it’s not the entirety of it.  Crops, whips, floggers and paddles are routinely used in play for the enjoyable stimulation of our bottoms not just to punish them when they have been naughty in bad ways.  Don’t get us wrong, we are not saying fantasy BDSM should be held to reality standards, it is called fantasy for a reason after all, but it can muddy the waters for the readers as to why people practice this lifestyle in the real world.

Another glaring deviation that we often see between fantasy and reality-based BDSM romance stories is the concept of a line of submissives waiting their turn with the Dominants in the dungeon.  We have been very fortunate to have been able to attend many dungeons across the country, both at events/conventions and the local clubs.  In reality, with the exception of demonstrations by well-respected experts in whatever the topic is, you almost never see a line of people waiting to be suspended, beaten, or sexually used by the Dominants in the club.  Even with an expert in suspension bondage, for example, you generally only see one or two demo bottoms used in the demonstration not a long line of willing submissives.

As someone who identifies as a Dominant (Reggie) the idea of such a line is interesting, I admit; I know it just isn’t likely to happen.  It makes for a great fantasy to give up control to a tall, rich, good looking Master who will do unspeakable things to you with no responsibility on your part but it misses one of the greatest benefits of BDSM.  A large part of the attraction of play is the give and take of energy and emotion between the top and bottom involved.  If you have a long line of random people who want you to do “A,” “B” or “C” activity you are very unlikely to have the required connection to achieve that give and take. That does not preclude the simple Top and bottom relationship that exists in every dungeon of the country which doesn’t require as deep a level of connection. Many of the stories however miss this critical element of the dynamic.

In a healthy power exchange relationship, both sides of the equation are responsible for the items they have negotiated.  True, the slave/submissive often has given the authority to make decisions to their Master/Dominant but that does not free them from common sense or a normal dose of self-preservation.  They are responsible for making their needs known and for the tasks they have negotiated.  Successful masters are not uncaring, cold alphas who need to beat someone to feel good.  They are generally focused on the needs of those who look to them.  They try and help their slave obtain personal and/or spiritual and even professional growth.  They want their submissives to be more successful people than they were when they started the relationship, not some anonymous doormat.

With all of the opportunities now available to share our lifestyle choices it is imperative that we engage in discussions and take whatever educational openings may become available to us.  We can respectfully show the differences between fantasy BDSM and power exchange relationships and those really practiced.  Both are required and have their place in the genre.  Without the fantasy based stories which have done so well recently only a fraction of the country would know that power exchange can be such a sexy alternative.  These books have put terms like safe words, hard limits and negotiation into every day usage. 

Wax Play
Attribution: Grendelkhan at the English language Wikipedia 
We can now show that the various forms of play we engage in are not just for torture or punishment but can be used to accomplish specific goals.  We have to admit that many of the things we engage in seem scary to the uninitiated.  Things like piercing, electrical play, wax play, fire play, suspension and impact play for a starter.  We know and understand what a wonderful tool these forms of play can be when used with intent and focus.  We understand that people can use the endorphins generated for so many positive outcomes. A golden window of opportunity has opened for us right now with everyone discussing the 50 shades books to share that information. With the power of our words we can explain why normal, sane people would do these things and why we would engage in such personally fulfilling relationships.

So, no matter what our personal feeling toward the writing in Ms. James’ books or any other authors may be, it is up to us to show that real, healthy relationships with these dynamics exist.  We can explain that BDSM does not equal abuse, that power exchange does not automatically mean manipulation and that those who practice these things are not mentally or emotionally unbalanced.
Reggie and kasi Alexander are the co-authors of The Keyhole Series (available at www.omnificpublishing.com), which consists of two novels, “Becoming sage” and “Saving sunni,” and two short stories, “It’s Only Kinky the First Time” and “Learning the Ropes.” They also write the BDSM Ménage Fantasies series (“Clifftop Fantasies”) for Siren Bookstrand (www.bookstrand.com/clifftop-fantasies) under the name Cassidy Browning.
Visit our blogs at www.kasialexander.com and www.naughtyeverafter.wordpress.com, friend us on Facebook as Reggie Alexander and Kasi Alexander, or follow us on Twitter (reggie3alex and kasialexander).

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17 Responses to “BDSM Event Day Nine – Not Every Dom has a Helicopter by By Reggie and kasi Alexander”

  1. Excellent post!! Yes, yes, and yes to everything. These are the same kinds of points I try to explain to 'nillas who ask me about the lifestyle. It's great to see others who are actually in the lifestyle writing about it realistically.

  2. As a fairly new reader to this genre and someone with no knowledge of BDSM this article was wonderfully written! I enjoyed understanding the difference between the fantasy, which I love reading, and the reality of the lifestyle, which does make more sense with your explanation! I'm currently reading Saving sunni and I appreciate very much your insights as well as enjoy your stories! Thank

  3. Very well written. I've not read your books yet but I will now. I completely respect what you are saying here. One of my co-workers came in to work with the 50 shades first book raving about how good it was if it was "a bit raunchy" I was thinking "hmm I wonder what 'a bit raunchy' would be" I read it and was laughing to myself because it's really mild if you

  4. Very well thought out, well spoken post. You were able to explain well to people not “in the lifestyle” what its all about.

  5. Thank you for such an informative post! I don’t live the lifestyle but what appeals to me about reading BDSM romance written by authors who either live it or research it well is the connection the people involved have. They form a bond of trust that is very appealing. I haven’t read any of your stories yet but I will definitely be looking for them now!

  6. All I can say is WOW, what an Amazing Post….I completely agree with Tymber…YES…YES…& YES!!
    I know that I may not make several people very happy in saying this…I think it is absolutely ridiculous that this Fifty Shades of Whatever has became “THE IT Book” for BDSM. I refuse to even read these Books. There are soooo many Fantastic Authors that I am loyal to that have been writing BDSM Books for years, have done their RESEARCH & the information is Safe & Accurate. Yes I know that we all read Erotic Fiction to live out out most Ultimate Fantasies, but Fantasies do on occassion become reality. With the Amazing Author that write BDSM, it feels as if they actually grab me & bring me right into their Scenes, I can actually feel the complete Trust among the characters, the Safe & Open Communcication of their BDSM Relationship & the Incredible Pleasure that is being experienced.
    Throw out that 50 Shade cramp & read some Experienced, Excellent BDSM Authors Incredibly Impressive, well-researched, Imaginative Minds!
    Ok, I’m off my soapbox, now I made some 50 Shade lovers mad at me, This is my opinion & I only speak the truth. My intention was not to make people mad.

    Take Care & Stay Naughty,
    PaParanormalFan (Renee’ S.)
    paranormalromancefan at yahoo dot com

  7. Thank you for a very well spoken post! You mentioned some very true points that need to be taken into account while reading.
    Mel

  8. Ohhhh I forgot one last comment LOL…I know, I can never keep it short LOL, if anyone would like to read GREAT Blog, you should check out;
    ‘THE PLAYROOM BDSM Authors Blog’….it’s a FANTASTIC Site…Thank you Tymber & your Fellow Authors for all your hard work on bringing such an informed Site to Us.

    http://bdsmauthorsplayroom.blogspot.com/

    Take Care & Stay Naughty,
    PaParanormalFan (Renee’ S.)
    paranormalromancefan at yahoo dot com

  9. Awesome post. I too am glad 50 Shades of Grey has opened up the eyes of many. It is however sad that a more deserving series/author wasn't the one to get the recognition that E.L. James has gotten. I loved all you had to say, and will look for your books. Thanks

  10. Very informative, thank you for that. I've read quite a number of stories in the genre and that's where I live my fantasies. I truly enjoy reading them, especially when there are powerful Doms with submissives who bring them to their knees 😉

    Eva
    evitap67(at)gmail(dot)com

  11. Thank you for sharing a very candid post full of information to ponder over. I've talked with several authors who are submissive and dominant about why I have a hard time understanding some things in their and others books. Some is just very difficult to wrap my head around.
    luvfuzzzeeefaces at yahoo dot com

  12. I have read and really enjoyed both Becoming sage and Saving sunni. This was my first exposure to polyamourous relationships and 24/7 Master/slave relationships. I loved learning more about how these relationships worked. Thanks so much for the great post and I really look forward to more books from you 🙂
    June
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

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