Why Don’t You Make a Choice? by Liz McMullen

Hard Rock Candy CoverCongratulations to Donna MacArthur! She won a copy of Hard Rock Candy from Liz McMullen.

Liz McMullen took a moment away from her busy schedule promoting the work of other lesbian authors and dropped in to say a few words here about her own writing. She recently released a sexy short story called Hard Rock Candy, see the hot cover over there?

Liz kindly offered to give away a copy here at Women and Words. You know you want in on that action, so leave a comment in the space below. I’ll pick a winner next Friday, 1/10/14.

Until then, let me hook you up with more fabulous ways to learn about Liz. You can check out her online podcast, The Liz McMullen Show, HERE. Or you can say hey on facebook HERE. And of course you can buy her story HERE.

Why Don’t You Make a Choice?
by Liz McMullen

There is more to “Hard Rock Candy” than spicy language and intense driving passion. I wrote the butch on butch pairing because they are so rare in lesbian fiction, and very often a taboo. Acceptance for different expressions of gender is growing, but masculine women loving other masculine women are markedly absent from fiction. I know a lot of it is matter personal taste, but the lack of stories about butch women who prefer butch lovers renders their experience invisible. Some women like their lovers to have attributes that are in contrast to their own, whereas others are looking for women just like themselves. The more socially acceptable version of the latter are two androgynous women or the straight male favorite, feminine women luxuriating in each other’s company.

My perceived gender is femme, and I can see where people get the idea, most of the pictures I have online support this notion, but I have a special collection of images. They are visible place markers for my butch leanings. I keep these online for two reasons, to be in contrast with other’s perception of me and as a testament to the integral part of myself…my butchness. I love walking in a room and owning my space. I love feeling virile, powerful, and potent.

As I grew older, I decided to write my own script. Time and time again I was asked, “Why don’t you just make a choice?” My standard reply was that I do, every time I get dressed I make a choice. Heck playing dress up while listening to loud music was half the fun of going out in the first place. One evening I would be sparkly femme in platform heels, a silver mini dress and body glitter. The next night I would wear my heavy black boots with a plain white tee tucked into low slung jeans. Sometimes I wanted to be fluid, a chameleon blending with my surroundings.
These days, comfort rules supreme. My uniform is a cotton tee, cargo shorts, and sneakers. Even when I dress up I choose the simplest outfits, and never sacrifice comfort for fashion. I’ve settled down a lot, but that spunky young woman is still in me somehow. These days she shows up on the page.

When I wrote “Hard Rock Candy,” I wanted the sex to be raw, with toe curling exhibitionism. I wanted it to be about fucking and clashing in the sheets rather than making love. Not because butches can’t relate to each other emotionally, but because that was not was Lea or Jade wanted that night. The fact that they were both butches made their fruit deliciously forbidden. Their sex was transgressive and intoxicating.

There was another important element I included, something that I have learned over the years…even with hard core sex between strangers, an emotional connection is forged. Primal sex by its very nature moves its participants. Sometimes the release is so intense there are tears. Lea and Jade may not be on the track for love, but they are fierce, they are brave, and they connect on a deeper level. It’s my hope that you will enjoy their journey, and perhaps open a door inside yourself that you never knew existed.

33 comments

  1. Kudos Liz for writing the butch action! The need to file every person neatly into folders for femme, butch, male and female is one of my pet peeves. Thanks for taking that on.

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    • You’re welcome. I may have been quaking in my baby dyke boots all that time ago, but I stood my ground. As an adult, I strive to to that with my writing.

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  2. Just bought it on Amazon. Love that name…Amazon. Liz your writing evokes memories. Your words stimulate. And your attitude makes me want to run up to you shouting a heartfelt “Sister”! Thanks for being just you.

    Lyn

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  3. Best expressed blog about butch/femme-butch/butch dynamics I’ve read. I especially love the quote, “I love walking in a room and owning my space.”
    Amen! And thanks for the opportunity for a free copy, but at such a great price, I don’t think I can wait to read it. On a snowy Sunday morning, I think I deserve a little treat. Thanks for providing one.

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  4. I love the title, Liz! I look forward to reading it.

    These are my thoughts on the matter: I think the gay community has viewed butch/butch relationships the way the straight community views two men or two women–What can you possibly see in each other? What can the other person offer?

    Well, if two men or two women can be together, why not two butches? Or two femmes? Or two whatevers? It may not be your personal cup of tea, but if you’re not in the relationship, why do you care?

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    • I hope you enjoy it RG! I agree with you, it’s just one more taboo we need to knock out of the park. Talking about it is a start.

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  5. Isn’t there always a part of ourselves that we’re looking for when connecting with another person?
    And here’s to comfortwear!
    Thank you, Liz.

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  6. when I think back to when I was a baby dyke (ok I was 40….) but I needed lesbian fiction to learn… all the things I needed to understand came from books, so yes, let good writes include all sorts of different women… so we can recognise ourselves (or not) but at least, it teaches us. No bad thing!

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    • I agree. Here are two of my favorite books that explore butch identity:

      The Three by Meghan O’Brien – I found I identified with and was attracted to the transmale character, he called out to me, and I wanted to relate to him as a butch

      Night Call by Radclyffe – The pairing here is butch/butch and so amazing. One of the most powerful love stories I have read.

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  7. I’m so happy for your success. I remember first reading this tale in your Notes section of your Facebook page. I knew then you had a hit on your hands, and was so excited that you decided to step out and publish the story. Mesaraven is right, your writing is spot on and very refreshing. I’m looking forward to reading many more stories from Liz McMullen. People, you really need to read this. It rocks!! Cheers to you!! 😉

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    • I think you are my go to woman for an ego boost when I am having a bad day…I mean that in the most wonderful sincere way!

      I’m currently working on my debut novel, “If I Die Before I Wake.” It will be out in late Spring. I am really looking forward to hearing your opinion of it.

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  8. As a kid we used to buy and eat hard “Rock Candy” on a stick…I wonder if this book will be as sweet????? 🙂

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    • After I publish my novel in the Spring, I will be working on another erotica release…this one with shape shifters of the most unusual variety.

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  9. Haven’t seen my girlfriend of 8 years for the last 2 years. About to see her after a 10,000 mile trip in two weeks. Have I forgotten how to do it? Do I need this book for some fresh ideas? Yes ;P

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    • Well it will give you some new ideas for sure.

      I don’t think you can forget how to do stuff…but then again, it will be wonderful to play the student again.

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