After several months of waiting impatiently (because it was accepted back in February) I’m extremely pleased to announce the publication yeasterday of my short story collection, Hanging Around by Renaissance in their Sizzler Editions list.
From the book blurb:
It’s two in the morning, and Mariska is dangling from a rope and displaying a lot of flesh to her tormentors. And she giggles. She’s been looking for something new in her life, and being a film extra in a low-budget zombie horror movie is certainly new… Twelve stunning chapters follow Mariska’s journey from barista to member of a group of bohemian artists, actors and others. She’s inducted into their fetish-oriented lifestyle, and along the way she’s tied, whipped, fisted and more in situations ranging from a film set to a lesbian club to an art exhibition. Oh, and somehow she finds time to write a journal about it. Fulani’s erotic stories, often dark and with BDSM-based themes, have appeared in numerous anthologies and ‘zines.
The stories follow Mariska and a group of her friends – artists, photographers, film-makers, musicians and actors, plus a librarian – through a series of scenes that (despite Renaissance tagging the book as ‘male dom’ and ‘extreme’) include straight, lesbian, bisexual and some gay action, a great deal of bondage and BDSM, and of course sex. Quite a lot of that as well.
1. The meat-packing factory. It’s two in the morning, in the old meat-packing factory. Mariska is dangling from a rope and displaying a lot of flesh to her tormentors. They’re going to fuck her senseless. And she giggles. She’s been looking for something new in her life, and being a film extra in a low-budget zombie horror movie is certainly new…
2. Elements of lust. That she and Tomas would have sex was, Mariska knew, a foregone conclusion. He was an artist and she was his model. What she hadn’t bargained for was how much she’d have to suffer for his art, and how excited that would make her.
3. Hellebore. Having a stranger turn up unexpectedly when you’re in the middle of a scene can be disquieting. Then again, as Mariska finds, if it’s Hellebore it can be exciting.
4. Cut piece. Kidnapping, S&M and performance art. It’s all part of a birthday party at a lesbian club… But a little bit of street justice needs to be administered as well.
5. Déjeuner sur l’herbe. A picnic turns into a photoshoot based on the famous Manet painting. So why is a big wooden cross involved?
6. Backlash. Mariska feels dumbed-down and dull from too many hours at work. She needs a way to reconnect with herself. A brutal whipping, a maelstrom of pain, is the special ritual she needs to achieve it.
7. The afterparty. Markisa attends the screening of the zombie film in which she’d been a film extra. The afterparty is in a small, crowded club. Fortunately it’s the kind of club that puts condoms instead of peanuts in dishes on the bar.
8. Dear diary. Mariska’s new diary is to record the highs and lows of her life. The interesting parts, not the day-to-day work in the coffee bar. But she’ll make an exception for today.
9. The goddess of fire. Roz likes playing with fire. Literally. Her fire-breathing performance at the party is her way to reinvent herself after a relationship break-up. After it, she feels like a goddess, and the point of being a goddess is that you can pick and choose your sexual pleasures.
10. The power of words. By day, Roz works in a library. Following a discussion with a fellow librarian, Anton, about whether a book is capable of being able to deprave and corrupt a reader, they decide to experiment.
11. Obscenity. A court case against Felix, the photographer, prompts Mariska and Tomas to investigate religious icons—and experiment with obscene sexual acts.
12. Hanging around. Mariska hangs out at an art exhibition. Literally, since she’s one of the exhibits.
Finally, I’ll mention that I first saw the cover a couple of days ago and immediately wrote a short story (which, obviously, isn’t in the book) about the cover itself. I’ll post it tomorrow to save this post getting too lengthy. Oh, and I wrote another one back in February, which also isn’t in the book, that’s a description of the book being published from Mariska’s point of view. It’s in this blog, back here on 14 February.
So please save a starving writer, go buy the book and enjoy!