How did you start writing erotica?
I started writing erotica several years ago, just for fun with no intention of having any of my stories published or shared with anyone else. I have always found beauty in sexual experiences, and writing erotica has allowed me to explore and share that beauty with others.
What’s your favourite published work of yours and why?
Sweat is the first work I’m publishing under this name, although I write short stories under a different name that also explore aspects of human existence. Of the stories in this collection, The Elevator is my favourite story.
What erotic authors do you enjoy reading?
I like Zane. I think she was my introduction to erotic fiction.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
I am inspired by real life experiences. I write about things that are realistic and easily relatable. I’m inspired by the flaws and shortcomings in people that make us unique and impulsive.
Do you have any unusual writing rituals?
I can’t write without caffeine. I either make a cup of coffee or take a five hour energy shot before I start writing.
Where’s your favourite place to write?
In my office… the third bedroom in my townhouse
Do your nearest and dearest know what you do, and if so, what was their reaction when they found out?
They don’t, which is why I write under a moniker. I don’t think my parents, who are church officers and respected members of our community, would be too thrilled about my career as an erotica writer. It’s just one aspect of my life that I choose to keep separate from the rest of my writing and the other, more socially acceptable aspects of my career.
What was your ideal career when you were a child?
I wanted to be a lawyer. I also wanted to be an author. I got it halfway right, which isn’t too bad.
How do you get yourself in the mood to write?
I am never in the mood to write. I don’t write until there is a story inside me that needs to be told so urgently that it begins to keep me up at night. I love telling stories but I hate the writing process and everything about it.
What’s the best writing tip you’ve ever been given?
I found the best writing tip I’ve ever been given in Stephen King’s memoir. He said that the best writers are avid readers. Whenever I want to glean inspiration for writing, I lose myself in a good book, sometimes a book I’ve never read before, and sometimes a book I’ve read several times and already absolutely love.
If you get writer’s block, how do you get around it?
I don’t think writer’s block actually exists. I think it’s just an excuse to avoid doing the work. When I don’t feel like writing, I don’t.
If you could bring one of your characters to life, which one would it be and why?
Every woman in Sweat is a different aspect of my own personality, so I’d venture to say that all of my characters live inside me. I write about what I know. In Sweat, the characters face difficult decisions. They have to choose between what is socially acceptable and their sexual urges and desires. They deal with heartache and disappointment, and make choices based on how they feel in the moment. All of my characters are me.
Which author, erotic or otherwise would you love to meet and why?
Wally Lamb is my absolute favourite writer. He tells the most amazing stories of these incredibly dynamic characters that seem to leap off the pages. I absolutely love every single one of his books.
What’s your favourite genre within erotica and why?
I don’t read much erotica. It’s one genre I’d love to explore more.
What are you working on at the moment?
I’m working on my first full-length novel, but I don’t have the attention span to work too long on it. I’m also still writing short stories and have a collaboration with another author in the works. I’m working on a book of poetry and short essays.
What’s the biggest writing challenge you’ve ever taken on? Did you succeed?
My biggest writing challenge is ghostwriting for other people. I have been successful, though it’s quite difficult to write from another person’s perspective.
What’s your biggest writing achievement? Why?
My personal writing—my blogs, ect.—are my greatest writing achievement. They allow me to be transparent and share aspects of myself that I wouldn’t have the courage to share otherwise. I’ve found a lot of comfort and healing in my personal writing that has saved my life during difficult times.
“The Tryst” tells the story of one woman desperate for the approval of her very dominant partner and the lengths she is willing to go to in order to earn it.
“Me, Her, and Him” suggests that the best way to get over an old man is to get under a new one… especially when his gorgeous wife comes as part of the deal.
From stories of love and passion like “The Elevator” to stories of sheer carnal, insatiable desire like “Bad Girl,” Sweat chronicles the stories of women who take control of their sexuality and go after what satisfies them most—at any cost.
Excerpt from “The Club”
I am a girl who plays it safe.
Every Friday night, I soak in the tub, pour myself a glass of pinot noir, and curl up with a good book or movie. I am usually deep under my covers by midnight at the latest, every single Friday night. This Friday night started off the same as every one before it. Halfway through my soak, I received a text. It was pretty simple. An address, and the words, Come out and play.
At that moment, I decided that, tonight, I would not be the safe girl. I would let caution go down the drain with my bathwater. I could be responsible tomorrow. I climbed out the warm, soapy water, wrapped myself in a towel, and walked into my closet.
Twenty minutes later, I catch my reflection in the rearview mirror… Not bad. My chocolate skin is clear and beautiful, and my hair blows in the nighttime breeze. My lips and nails are a brazen, come-fuck-me red, and they contrast with the simplicity of my outfit—a semi-tight fitting black dress (I am braless, because only good girls wear bras) and black Chucks. My freshly scrubbed body smells like cocoa butter and black soap. I turn the music up louder and sing along with the filthy lyrics, careful not to miss my exit. I reach my destination, find a place to park, feed the meter, and send the text I know he’s waiting for.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
CoCo Gem was born on June 1, 1982, in Washington DC. An only child to older parents, CoCo became an avid reader at a young age, and has always had a love for words. “I didn’t have any siblings, so I found my friends in books,” CoCo says. “It wasn’t long before I’d read every book on my bookshelf and was asking for weekly library visits.” All throughout school, CoCo maintained As in English, and she went on to major in English Arts at Hampton University. She graduated and became a high school English teacher, and, for the next 9 years, shared her love of literature and writing with high school students in Oxon Hill, Maryland.
CoCo is an avid fiction writer who tends to focus on the less explored aspects of humanity, including overwhelming sexuality, the heaviness of human emotion, and the constant battle of consciousness. She has several published short stories available for purchase on Amazon, and she continues to write and publish stories on her personal website, www.alisahyman.com. Sweat is CoCo’s first book. Set to release in June, Sweat is a compilation of erotic short stories and poems that explore the sexual limits of her characters and entice readers to be more exploratory in their own sexual practices.
CoCo is currently working as a freelance writer/editor and content developer, helping entrepreneurs to develop the content necessary to build their websites and promote themselves. She is also ghostwriting two novels, and is planning to collaborate with other authors in the future. CoCo has one 14-year-old son and lives in the suburbs of Washington, DC. She sees herself one day landing on the New York Times Bestseller list… if she can ever sit still long enough to write a novel of her own.
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