Black Lace Editor Kerri Sharp reveals her favourite Wicked Words
If you're going to put together a 'best of' anthology like Wicked Words 10 and ensure that each and every story hits the spot, you need someone who knows erotica to crack the whip and take charge!
Enter Kerri Sharp - Black Lace stalwart and editor extraordinaire - who was infamously accused by the Daily Mail during the early days of Black Lace of "corrupting the morals of the nation's women and betraying civilised values." A fabulous recommendation if ever we've heard one!
Here Kerri tells us what you'll find inside the covers of Wicked Words 10, how she went about selecting the stories, and what makes an erotica 'sizzling hot' rather than 'absolutely not'!
"I always knew that compiling The Best Of Wicked Words was going to be tricky, but I didn't realise how tricky until I was faced with the daunting task of choosing 17 stories from almost 200. We think the series has got better with each anthology – but we didn't want to limit the selection to stories from the past couple of books. Instead, we went with there being something intrinsically, naughtily wicked about each of the stories, or that we were unable to exclude them because they were just so darned well-written. Either way, there sure is a whole bunch of bad girls in this book! They're either seducing their doctors, brewing their own booze or attracting the attention of the law – as in The Bad Girl, or their disarming their tax auditor with expense claims for sex toy – as in The Last Deduction and using them to best effect.
There's some very horny behaviour going on down in the woods during army exercises in Outmanoeuvred, and some sizzling-hot repressed passions in Bible-belt America in Saving Julie. One very respectable lady plays games of exhibitionism and voyeurism in the shopping mall toilets in Public Washrooms, Private Pleasures, while a young witch sticks to her pagan roots in Wytchfinder. This eclectic compilation includes the inner-city feistiness of LaToya Thomas's Bad Girl but gives equal space to Astrid Fox's Scratch – which transports us back to the days of the Vikings, and the seduction of a young monk by a Scandinavian heathen priestess.
Special mention goes to Mathilde Madden whose stunning stories You Spoil Me and Wheels on Fire go bravely in to the darker areas of the erotic imagination than most people are comfortable with but, with a writing style that is eloquent, understated and mature.
In this genre, style matters. Erotic characters should walk the talk, grab your attention from the first line of the story, and draw you in to their personality and their world. I'm proud to say that not one of these stories begins with a description of the weather or of someone waking up – a certain kiss of death for short stories as far as this editor is concerned!"