Rat Queens

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Hannah and Braga of the comic Rat Queens gracefully posed for a picture with the TARDIS, cosplayed by Cait Gordon (@CaitGAuthor, Facebook, website) and Caro Frechette (@CaroFrechette1, Facebook, website), authors with Renaissance Press. You can meet some of the Renaissance authors tomorrow, at CON Creative Ottawa Nerds!

I am so impressed by these costumes! I am personally not familiar with Rat Queens, so I didn’t know the character names. Due to the quality of the costumes, I was EASILY able to figure it out. Also – Hannah’s staff is Cait’s cane. Fantastic use of prop!

You both look bad-ass!

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Blush Guest Post: A Gender Exploration

Lust and Lemonade can be purchased through Renaissance Press

A Gender Exploration
by Jamieson Wolf

Lust and Lemonade can be purchased through Renaissance Press
Lust and Lemonade can be purchased through Renaissance Press

When I started to write Lust and Lemonade, I didn’t intend to write a book that dealt with gender.

Before writing Lust and Lemonade, I was primarily a romance and erotica writer. I delved into the lives of men and the ones that loved them, set in mythical worlds with otherworldly beings.  The men fought for each other with every fibre of their being, using their magic to save the day and save the man they loved.

When I started writing Lust and Lemonade, I only intended to write about what I knew. I knew gay men being one myself. But as I continued to write, other characters wanted to come onto the page, too. One of them was a woman named Poppy and she was pregnant. She was also a lesbian.

I didn’t know anything about pregnancy and what women went through with having a child. I relied on my beta reader for info on the female gender and about what is involved with having a lesbian relationship. I was in uncharted waters and Google would only take me so far. I had written women characters before, but the focus was always on the men and the relationships they were having. The women were only secondary and hadn’t taken centre stage. Lust and Lemonade was the first of my novels to feature strong women in lesbian relationships.

As I kept writing, I began to realise something. Two of my characters were transgender. One of them is a transgender woman and the other is a transgender man. If I had no concept of lesbian relationships, I had absolutely zero idea about the transgender population.

This uncharted territory was rather frightening for me as a writer, but it was also freeing in a way. I have never researched a novel before Lust and Lemonade. I delved into the lives of transgender people and what they went through to become who they always were, who they were meant to be.

I also wrote about straight characters finding love. It seemed right that if I was going to write about all kinds of other genders, that I included them too. The characters demanded it, really. It was only fair, they said, that if I was going to have gay, lesbian, and transgender characters in my novel, that the straight people get fair representation, too.

So, when I started writing Lust and Lemonade, I didn’t intend to write a book about gender. The book let me know where it wanted to go and the characters that peopled its pages. I also knew that, even though I’ve written many romances, that there would be no sex on the page. It would all take place off stage.

A friend of mine asked me how I could have lust in the title and not include sex scenes? It’s simple. The lust that is in the title is about the lust of getting to know someone, of becoming enraptured and enthralled with them. Much as I became enthralled with all the people in Lust and Lemonade.

I may not have set out to write about gender, but I’m so glad I did. I learned something about others that I didn’t know before, learned about their battles to be who they were and who they were meant to be. Writing Lust and Lemonade made me a better writer and, quite possibly, a better person.

Find  out what happens to Blaine, Nancy, Mike, Chuck, and company in Lust and Lemonade, available now from Renaissance Press! You can get your copy here:

https://renaissancebookpress.com/product/lust-and-lemonade/


Jamieson Wolf is an award winning, Number One Best Selling Author. He is a poet, a blogger and, above all, a story teller.

He currently lives in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada with his cat, Tula, who is fearless, and his husband Michael, who is magic.

You can find Jamieson at home at www.jamiesonwolf.com

You can also read his blog at www.jamiesonwolfauthor.wordpress.com

 

Renaissance Press

Image taken from Renaissance Press's website www.renaissancebookpress.com

My publisher Renaissance Press (and Eric’s, incidentally) is having a sale on all their love-oriented books and games for the entire month of February! If you haven’t picked up a copy of Blush yet, this would be a good time to do that!

You can also see a complete list of all their published works here.

Image taken from Renaissance Press's website www.renaissancebookpress.com
Image taken from Renaissance Press’s website www.renaissancebookpress.com

Can-Con (No Dragon Sightings)

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

Dragon is taking her time so I’m back at work this week (until I get the call, text, etc.) That means the super awesome story I have planned for you will have to wait for Thursday. It will hopefully not be postponed again.

This past weekend, despite being Dragon’s due date, we decided to get a table at Can-Con. It’s our favourite convention and is totally awesome.

Can-Con

One of the highlights of my weekend was selling coffee to authors I respect. It makes me feel all fan-boyish. The other was seeing old friends and meeting new ones. Can-Con people rock.

Not wanting to be too far away from Dragon, or the table, I only got to see one panel and give my first reading.

The panel I went to was about antagonists, it was incredibly interesting. The panelists were great (as usual).

Next year I plan on being on more panels. (I was asked but didn’t want to risk the chance of a Dragon hatching pulling me away).

THANK YOU!

To all the organizers, panelists, volunteers, vendors, and visitors to Can-Con; thank you so much for making it another great convention. I look forward to doing it again next year!

We’d both like to thank everyone who made sure Jen was ok and checked in on her throughout the weekend. You made her and I feel extremely loved and cared for!

My Reading

Taken by Madona Skaff
Taken by Madona Skaff

The reading was a lot of fun. Cait Gordon is a spectacular performer, Madona Skaff was fantastic, and Caroline Fréchette gave an impressive reading despite having bronchitis.

I learnt an important lesson about reading. Double check the passage before you read it. I just chose a random one and went for it, but didn’t account for how much extra set-up I needed. Seriously, I think I chose the part with the most characters in the entire book. I was sweaty, mumbling, and awkward, but people said I did okay. Next time I’ll prepare a little more.

Speaking of next time…

Mega-Multi-Author Launch!

This October 29th, Jen, I, and 6 other fantastic authors will be launching books and a game. It’ll be amazing. There are prizes, readings, food, and costumes!

There will probably be a baby Dragon there, in an adorable costume. (She’ll hatch by then right?)

This is the best place to get my book and some of my favourite reads from the past few years.

That’s it for now.

 

I’ll either be writing a new post on Thursday or you’ll get a story as I cuddle a Dragon.

Later Days!

Éric

 

Introducing Two New Coffee Flavours

A medium roast with Canadian maple flavouring

Hello,

Ottawa Comic Con is coming very soon. (Just typing those words sends a shiver of panic up my spine.)

This year JenEric Designs will be sharing a table with the awesome Renaissance Press, along with Gilove2dance.

New Flavours

One of my many new years resolutions was to bring our total amount of coffee flavours to 15. We’re a little closer to that goal now. Our two newest coffee flavours are:

Returning Flavours

They will be available at Comic Con along with our core flavours and a few other favourites:

Decaf

And because decaf has proven to be popular we’ll also have three kinds of decaf:

 

As you can see we’ll have lots of coffee for you this year. Don’t forget that if you get to our table early enough we’ll have free samples.

I’m currently loving Minter’s Coming. What flavour is your favourite?

Éric

Support the Blush Kickstarter you could WIN!!!

Don't dread "the talk." Blush makes it fun, and approachable... no matter what the questions are. Please help make this sexual health trivia game happen by backing our kickstarter! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1357195744/blush
Don’t dread “the talk.” Blush makes it fun, and approachable… no matter what the questions are.
Please help make this sexual health trivia game happen by backing our kickstarter!
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1357195744/blush

Contest

Pledge any amount you want to the Blush Kickstarter and then enter below to win a $50 gift card for any JenEric Designs products.

TrophySupport the Blush Kickstarter and WIN!!!
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Disclaimer

Jen, of JenEric Designs is the author of Blush and is working with the awesome publisher Renaissance Press to make Blush a success. Learn more about the game on the Kickstarter or on Blush: A Card Game.

Blush: Clitoris

Image from esacademic.com. Look familiar?

We are filming for the Kickstarter THIS Friday, February 12th, 2016 in the Algonquin College Student Commons (E building in Ottawa) from 2:30 to 3:30 pm. Do you want to help out? Come and be in our video! We’ll be asking some easy questions and some tougher ones from the game for the video, and don’t be afraid to get the answer wrong – this is all about learning!

Also, we have a logo! Isn’t it gorgeous?

blush back2
Blush: A card game logo. Image by Caroline Frechette of Renaissance Press. Follow them on Facebook and Twitter!

I haven’t talked much about physiology yet. Let’s remedy that!

Question

What is the clitoris?

Answer

The clinical definition is that it is the sensitive part of the female sexual organs, and it’s only function is to provide pleasure. Who knew that women were the ones that had a body part solely dedicated to pleasure!

There is a lot to be learned about the clitoris. For one thing, it’s a LOT bigger than most people think. Only a tiny portion of it is visible; the rest is hidden inside the body.

Image from esacademic.com. Look familiar?
Image from esacademic.com. Look familiar?

This image should look somewhat familiar to those of you who have studied anatomy in school, or if you have a penis. This is because the equivalent anatomy in a male is the penis.

Like penises (peni?), clitorises (clitori?) vary in shape, size, and colour. They also vary in amount of stimulation needed. Some women prefer direct contact, others prefer proximity.

Hope to see you on Friday!


References

http://www.esacademic.com/pictures/eswiki/67/Clitoris_anatomy_labeled-en.jpg
http://news.health.com/2015/10/05/10-things-you-never-knew-about-the-clitoris/

What is Blush?

The goal of the game ‘Blush’ is to open high-quality communication about sex between parents and their adolescents. It has been found that when there is such communication present in families, the likelihood of the adolescent delaying vaginal intercourse and using contraceptives increases dramatically, as found by Karofsky, Zeng and Kosorok (2001) and Bersamin et al. (2008). A big problem with communication is the awkwardness and embarrassment that comes with talking about sex, according to Jaccard, Dittus and Gordon (2000). It is considered a stigmatized subject in most societies, and is therefore not often discussed.

‘Blush’ is designed to stimulate conversation in families. It has been proven that board games assist with promoting communication skills in families, according to Yeager (2001) and Smith and Renter (1997). The game will help parents to talk to their teenagers about sex in a non-confrontational way and make sure that they have absorbed the information. It will help adolescents to ask their parents questions, ones that they may not even know that they had.

Kirby and Miller (2002) designed programmes to promote communication about sex between parents and their teenagers. They said that a good program will have four outcomes:

(a) increase parents’ knowledge about sexual issues and also about the sexual behaviours of young people; (b) help parents understand that talking about sex to teenagers is likely to have beneficial effects, and unlikely to increase the chances that their teenagers will engage in sex; (c) help parents clarify their own values about sex and express these in ways that do not ‘turn off’ the teenager, and thus foreclose further discussion possibilities; and (d) improve parents’ skills in talking about sexuality, through increasing their comfort with the material, their listening skills and their skills in initiating discussions. (cited in Moore and Rosenthal, 2006, p 98)

‘Blush’ will achieve all four outcomes. The trivia questions will expand the knowledge background of all participants, and help open communication on various levels for both generations.

It is very important for adolescents to be able to communicate with their parents about sexuality, and this game will stimulate conversation on various topics in sexuality. Adolescents who are unaware or think they are aware of all the risks involved have a chance of getting hurt, an STI, or pregnant. Most learning programs and websites are set up for adolescents to discover the answers to their questions on their own. But if the teenager is unaware of some aspect of sexuality, they may not know what question to ask.

This game is comprised of all the topics required to give the curious mind a well-rounded description of all the topics necessary to ensure that the adolescent is well prepared for anything and everything. From the body, birth control and safety to pleasure, myths and alternate lifestyles, this game covers all the topics that parents want their children to know, and children want to know the answers to, but were too afraid to ask. The idea of coming out and asking your parents a question about sex can be intimidating, especially if your parents don’t seem to have an open mind about sex.

‘Blush’ is set up so that teenagers can get the answers to the questions they want to hear, and parents can be sure that their teen knows of all the dangers and how to be safe. As parents, they can also clearly define their values and goals for their adolescent. Not everyone feels the same way about sex before marriage, or homosexuality, and this game is not made to enforce the creator’s beliefs, but to educate. Playing this game can create a more relaxed atmosphere while talking about sex, as opposed to the dreaded ‘sex-talk’ that happens between teenagers and their parents.

Websites and books can provide most of the information given in this game, but they are geared towards one person accessing them at a time. The whole family can participate when you play this game, or teenagers can play with their friends. This provides a unique opportunity for parents or peers to provide additional information and clarification, as they see fit. Websites can also have the wrong information, and sometimes it is difficult to search through the falsities to find the truth. The questions in this game have been researched thoroughly from reliable sources such as books, journal articles and professional websites. All the information is now in one place, with easy access, for a fun experience with the whole family.


You can ask any questions you like in our anonymous ask box:

Your Name (Not Required)

Subject

Your Message

I will occasionally answer questions on the blog, if I feel like they will promote a good discussion.

I am incredibly excited to be working with Renaissance Press on this project! My dream of making this game a reality has finally come true, after seven years. I can’t wait!


References

Bersamin, M., et al. (2008). Parenting Practices and Adolescent Sexual Behaviour: A Longitudinal Study. Journal of Marriage and Family, 70(1), 97-112.

Jaccard, J., Dittus, P. J., & Gordon, V. V. (2000). Parent-teen communication about premarital sex: Factors associated with the extent of communication. Journal of Adolescent Research, 15(2), 187-208.

Karofsky, P. S., Zeng, L., & Kosorok, M. R. (2001). Relationship between adolescent-parental communication and initiation of first intercourse by adolescents. Journal of Adolescent Health, 28(1), 41-45.

Moore, S., & Rosenthal, D. (2006). Sexuality in adolescence: Current trends. New York: Routledge/Taylor & Francis Group.

Smith, C. W., & Renter, S. G. (1997). The play is the thing: Using self-constructed board games in family therapy. Journal of Family Psychotherapy, 8(3), 67-72.

Yeager, M. F. (2001). Treasure time: A journey in communication and understanding. In H. G. Kaduson & C. E. Schaefer (Eds.), 101 more favorite play therapy techniques (pp. 386-389) Lanham, MD: Jason Aronson.