Safewords: Davenport and Chiffon
By Candace Blevins
Safeword series, Book 5. (All are standalone books with the exception of the two Davenport novels)
Genre: BDSM Romance, Erotica
Number of pages: 166
Word Count: 69,000
Dana is ready to submit to Zach, but she’s going to be surprised by the depth of her submission. She’s comfortable Dominating Jacob, but how will the four of them form a unit?
Zach thought he’d worked through his issues, and he was patient with Dana as she worked through hers, but a painful reminder of the past makes him question whether he can accept Dana’s submission. Will he be able to handle being completely vulnerable once again?
Safewords: Davenport and Chiffon is the continuation of a story begun in Safeword: Davenport.
Warning: This title contains graphic language, consensual BDSM, bondage, extreme electrical play, and the use of toys including clamps, canes, plugs, cages, paddles, whips, and floggers.
This is a heavy, hardcore BDSM story if you enjoy Annabel Joseph, Kitty Thomas, and Anneke Jacob you should be okay with these books
Scheduled for release: August 3, 2012
What I Liked:
This book was completely and utterly intense. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but I have never read a book that gutted me like this one. Ms. Blevins reaches into the darkest corners of your soul and scoops out your heart with the roller coaster ride within these pages. The story is visceral and full of emotional turmoil. The hard core BDSM scenes were heavier than I was used to, but exploring new things is part of what keeps me reading.
What I Didn't:
Trying not to give away much in the way of spoilers is tough because there were a few scenarios in this book that I had not come across before. If you are squeamish and prefer light BDSM, read the warning label first.
This book had me in places I have never been. I am still reading it as I post this and it was honestly hard to pull myself away long enough to get this done on time. The range of emotions that Ms. Blevins reaches through her scenes is intense enough to have me putting down the book so I can breathe and snatching it back up again to find out what happens on the next page. Dana is a character you can identify with. I felt her pain, joy, love and all of the other emotions as she experienced. You simply have to read it. It is a journey of discovery that explores power exchanges and the dynamics of trust. Amazing.
1. What is the lure of BDSM in romance, as you see it?
I believe various forms of BDSM have always existed, though it hasn’t always been consensual – arranged marriages and the idea of the man being the head of the household wasn’t that long ago. Both of my grandmothers were raised with the idea they would have to obey their husbands, and both were shocked when they realized I was going to have my own career and had no interests in marrying. (I did eventually marry, but I was thirty, and neither of my grandmothers had an opportunity to meet my husband.)
Today’s society allows women to make our own choices, and some of us have chosen to be in control, while others are choosing to surrender our power. Still others don’t want to control or be controlled, but want the extra spice pain can add in the bedroom.
BDSM Romance allows women to explore these things without taking the plunge. Some women will keep it to their happy fantasies, but perhaps others will get an idea of what turns them on (and what doesn’t) from the books they read, and will eventually try it in real life. Books have always allowed us to explore places, ideas, and concepts we’re curious about. Whether it’s skydiving, acting as a secret spy, being rich, being poor, or submitting to a man in the bedroom, fiction gives us an opportunity to step outside of our own life for a little while.
2. Can you tell us what inspired this particular storyline?
Early last year I came very close to losing my husband. It took seven hours of surgery for the doctors to bring him back to me, and it was touch and go for a few days after the surgery, when the doctors and nurses still weren't assuring me he was going to pull through. I sat beside his hospital bed with my laptop and wrote, the hours turning into days. My parents kept our daughters, took them to school, fed them. I saw them in the mornings on webcam, helped them with their homework in the evenings on webcam. I didn't leave his side.
I believe time heals all wounds, and during this time I wrote the beginning of a book that involved a submissive who had lost her husband a few years before. She'd rebuilt her life, rebuilt who she was, and was finally beginning to date. I suppose it was my way of reminding myself I’d survive, eventually, if I lost him. When the doctors finally decreed my husband was going to live, going to make it, I put the story aside and focused on the fact I’d be able to take him home, eventually. It took months for him to fully recover, but he did.
It was close to a year later when I finally pulled the story out and finished it.
3. What is the biggest thing you want readers to get from your books?
Submissive doesn’t equal weak. Sadists can be loving. And the flavors of BDSM are many. As long as you’re considering safety, everything is consensual, and everyone is capable of consenting – there really isn’t a right or wrong way to do it. Whatever works for a specific couple is what’s right for them.
4. What is your favorite kind of BDSM character to write about, Dom, sub or switch?
Most of the time I most enjoy writing about strong women who happen to be submissive.
5. What would you tell someone who is wanting to write erotica, particularly BDSM? Is there a source for good information that dispels some of the misinformation in the media?
While there are a few authors who claim to not be in the lifestyle who have written it well, for the most part I believe you need to personally enjoy BDSM before you can really write about it. It’s not a hard and fast rule, because there are some great books written by people who tell me they’re completely vanilla in real life, but those are the exception, I’m afraid.
I don’t believe you necessarily have to experience or like everything you write about, but a basic understanding of the dynamics of power exchange, of how BDSM Clubs really operate, of what the body experiences when bound, or when hurt – I’m unsure how anyone writes about these things without having experienced them. It doesn’t mean you must like everything you write about – I’m not a fan of electricity, yet it plays a big role in my two Davenport books. However, I’ve experienced it enough I could accurately describe the physical and psychological effects, and I’m friends with a few experts, so I could run some of the details by them to be sure I got the equipment right. Also, I have a close friend who loves electrical play, and between my experience and her zeal for it, I feel I did the subject justice.
As far as writing erotica in general, if you’ve ever had good sex then you’ve got the basis for the feelings and emotions you want to get across. If you’re still a virgin, or if you’ve never had what you consider fantastic sex, then you might want to get some more real life experience before you begin writing about it. I could repeat all of the “show don’t tell” advice out there, but I think you learn by examining what works and what doesn’t. When you read other people’s erotica, break it down in your mind. Pay attention to what flips your switch, and what doesn’t, and figure out the difference.
6. What are your thoughts on the sudden interest in erotica and BDSM due to the 50 Shades phenomenon?
I’m a bit flabbergasted. I saw a reviewer accuse Ann Rice of copying the Fifty Shades idea with her Beauty Series. Those books are almost twenty years old! The first was published in 1983! BDSM Literature has been around at least 200 years. The current terminology is less than one hundred years old, but the acts themselves are probably timeless.
If the 50 Shades books help people shed some inhibitions and explore their sexuality, I think that’s a good thing. I hope readers take the time to learn about safety before they delve too deeply, though.
7. When you read an erotic romance or a good BDSM story, what elements make you fall in love with it?
I want people who can accept, and own, the things that turn them on – apologetic sadists get on my nerves.
I prefer consent, and I prefer both Dom and sub to be strong and capable, though there’ve been some good books without these elements.
For the most part I want three dimensional characters who are capable of loving, of being honest with their partner(s) and themselves, and who metaphorically dive into the deep end of BDSM.
8. What are some of your favorite BDSM authors?
Annabel Joseph, Anneke Jacob, Morgan Hawke, Syd McGinley, Molly Weatherfield, Joey W. Hill, the writing team of Chris Owen and Jodi Payne, Sean Michael... it’s a long list.
9. Do you have a playlist?
I prefer my music to not have words when I’m writing, so I usually have Bach or Strauss playing, occasionally Mozart. I have a few instrumental movie soundtracks I occasionally play, and if I need the right mood then perhaps Enya can work.
10. What is your current writing project?
Safeword: Quinacridone, which explores objectification without delving deeply into D/s.
Candace Blevins is a southern girl who loves to travel the world.
She lives with her husband of 14 years and their two daughters. When not working or driving kids all over the place she can be found reading, writing, meditating, or swimming.
Candace writes romance books about characters who happen to have some extreme kinks. Relationships can be difficult enough without throwing power exchange into the mix, and her books show people who care enough about each other to fight to make the relationship work.
You can visit her on the web at candaceblevins.com and kinkyeverafter.com