Monday Morning Fika with Liv Honeywell: Living, writing, and breaking rules in the BDSM/DD lifestyle

I started writing BDSM erotica years ago. I am in the lifestyle as a sub, and I first started reading erotica to learn about what I might like to try. When I first started I knew so little that I didn’t even know what the questions should be, never mind the answers. The stories I read set me off thinking about what situations I might like to be in. What would be too much, what didn’t interest me at all, but better than that, what did appeal?


It wasn’t that I didn’t enjoy a lot of the tales I read. I did actually. Not all of them were very well written but I still enjoyed them for the ideas they gave me. But then I started thinking about writing stories on what I wanted. I could make them exactly to my tastes then, create my own little world where nothing happened that jarred me out of the story because it didn’t work for me.


And that’s how it all began, back in 1998 when I wrote my first story, blushing as I typed, and wondering if I’d ever have the nerve to show it to anyone.


I finally did show it to someone, to the Dom who got me started with all this. He asked me straight out what my fantasies were and persisted with the question, despite all my attempts to get out of telling him, until I wrote him an email which still makes me blush today for the memory of it. After he didn’t run away and tell me I was a freak – always a good thing! – I plucked up the courage to send him my first story and he liked that too.


Then we tried it. Oh boy! That’s perhaps a story for another time, but it led me into the wonderful world of BDSM. I found some amazing, friendly and welcoming people who are still close friends today and who gave me so much good advice. Luckily I was sensible enough, despite the kid in a candy store feeling, to follow it.


But along the way, and sometimes even now, I’ve come across people in both the BDSM and DD lifestyles who seem to think there is a chiseled in granite, handed down from aeons ago, Rules of How to ‘Do’ BDSM/DD. Oddly enough, it always seems to be a set of rules that only they are privy to.


As far as I’m concerned, the only rule of BDSM or DD is that there are no rules. It’s what you make of it and what suits the people (however many there are and of whatever type, sex or orientation) in the relationship. Really, who on earth is anyone else to come along and tell you that what you are doing isn’t BDSM/DD? There are a whole bunch of ‘experts’ out there who are quite happy to tell everybody else what they ‘should’ be doing but, as long as you and yours are happy with what you’ve got, who cares?


And it’s the same for writing.


Whether it’s same sex, opposite sex or several people of different sexes all at once, if it’s realistic for that story and it is well written and makes sense for the people involved, I can’t see why it wouldn’t work. Whether it fits neatly into any one genre or not.


It’s all about the characters, isn’t it? Would they do that? Would they really say that? And if they would, if it’s consistent, what’s the problem?


I know Ana has faced this and overcome it with her non-traditional tales of FF spanking with no sex, and I’m hoping it works for me with a book I want to have published by the end of the year.


It’s my first full length novel, The Undomesticated Subby, which the characters from Coming, Ready or Not, my latest release, are taken from. It probably won’t fit neatly into some categories because it’s not how erotica ‘should’ be done at all but I’m still going to write it. I may well have put some people off already with the title as a lot of people don’t like the word ‘subby,’ but it fits for what I’m doing.


It’s a traditional romantic comedy with all the ‘will they, won’t they’s and things going wrong, but about a couple developing a Master/slave relationship. There may even be only one sex scene right at the end (because, of course, they *will* – got to have a happy ending!).


And some people will hate it, because it’s not their idea of what this kind of book ‘should’ be. I know that already, but hopefully enough people will love the story of two people who have been best friends for years discovering a Master/slave relationship – after a few trials and tribulations, of course. But even if they don’t, even if no-one reads it at all, I’m still going to write it. Just for me.


That’s the thing. You know what stories you have inside you. You know what you want them to be, and, whether they fit the traditional idea; whether they fit the ‘should’s or not, write them!


The biggest thing I got from being in a D/s relationship was knowing that I was completely accepted for exactly who I am. Not because I’m perfect or I don’t have any faults – believe me, I do – but purely because he let me be me, whatever that meant. Even on my bad days.


And again, I think that applies to writing, whether the acceptance of what you write is from yourself or the people around you. But it also applies to the lifestyle that we choose to live, whatever that means for us. The world would be a nicer place if there weren’t so many cliques and so many people busying themselves with telling everyone else that they’re not doing it right.


Maybe one day we’ll get there.


In the meantime, I hope you will live how you want to live; write what you want to write, and don’t let anyone tell you that what you’re doing isn’t the true and only way.





Liv’s Bio:


When not writing about delicious, hot male dominants and the female subs who love them, I’m usually doing something craft-like, reading, baking, eating the results of said baking, and attempting to satisfy the demands of His High and Mighty Dominance (the cat!). My first story, Imagine, was published with Silver Moon Books last year and Coming, Ready or Not is my first solo book. The Journal, co-written with Domitri Xavier, is out soon.




Coming, Ready or Not! is available from Amazon US – and Amazon UK –
You can follow me on my blog –, Twitter – or Facebook – and my Amazon page is here:

26 thoughts on “Monday Morning Fika with Liv Honeywell: Living, writing, and breaking rules in the BDSM/DD lifestyle

  1. Natasha Knight says:

    Love this post Liv. Love FIKA for the authentic, unique reads. Live and let live is the philosophy I try to live by. Try is the key word there. I believe we all want to do this but still sometimes it’s hard. Judging others is a part of our makeup. I wish it weren’t, life would be so much easier.

    You mention being accepted for who you are. I wonder if we do judge because those pieces we see and judge in others are the exact one we can’t or haven’t yet accepted in ourselves.

    Like Sherk says – ‘Ogres are like onions. Layers donkey, they have layers…’ People are the same. Get through the layers, accept what’s there with kindness toward yourself and the next natural step is accepting others.

    Sounds easy, huh? 🙂


    • Liv Honeywell says:

      Thanks, Natasha :). That’s an interesting point about judging people for the things we haven’t accepted in ourselves. It does make me wonder if that’s what is going on sometimes when people feel the need to comment negatively on things.

      I love the Shrek quote. Very true :). Accepting yourself is definitely the trick – so much easier to be kinder to other people than we are to ourselves with that darned negative self talk! Now that’s a whole other blog post 🙂


  2. Joelle Casteel says:

    Yes, I gotta make sure to get to Ana’s page regular again. But I’m glad I stopped to get this FIKA, Liv. Yeah, too many get caught up in what should be, whether that be in fiction or life. It’s interesting though, that this is the FIKA to be shared this morning when I’ve had some vents and comments about romance/erotica/erotic romance genres on Facebook. As we’ve all no doubt read at some point, whether it’s possible to research a topic like BDSM and write a good book. Sure, some do, but I know for me, my preference is always going to be for a lifestyler’s book before someone who “just” researched. so definitely, your “romantic comedy” with a Master/slave couple- yup, if my Master’s letting me buy books again lol, I will be buying it when it comes out, rather than just putting it on my wishlist as I have been.

    I’m glad for Ana’s example though, on her spanking fiction. I’d started this poly spanking after Cara and a few others had suggested it’s not a niche being written that much, but I keep getting stopped by what seems to be the “formula for DD,” but I know at least Ana out of our friends have fought against the formula and won.


  3. Liv Honeywell says:

    Thanks Joelle :). I’m glad you enjoyed it.

    I know what you mean. There’s researching the correct flogger to use and then there’s knowing exactly how it feels when it lands on your butt! Having said that, I do know at least one writer who is not lifestyle at all but writes wonderfully realistic books, so it is possible :).

    I think if you’re going to write something, write the story the way it naturally comes out and *then* worry about genre and ‘should’s. You can always self publish if publishers are having trouble shoe horning it into a particular genre :).


    • Joelle Casteel says:

      yeah, not to say that a writer can’t get something good with second research, just I’m not likely to take a random person’s “I wrote without experiencing it first hand.”

      Self-publishing can be such a boon. Although it has had its up-hill moments for me. I remember the day I went to Sue Lyndon begging “please read my book and tell me if I picked good tags because I keep reading about the importance of proper tagging for sales and I don’t know I did it right.” Of course lol, Sue told me I was worrying for nothing and I’d picked good tags :D.


    • Anastasia Vitsky says:

      I think that passion can have a good deal of effect…if we are passionate about what we do, even if we make mistakes (such as not knowing something because we are not in the lifestyle) the commitment will come through. It shows very clearly when people are writing something just because they think it’s popular/will sell well.


  4. Sheila says:

    Thanks for your comments. There is no right or wrong to so much that you have to please yourself. You decide what is right for you. Once I started doing that then my life became so much easier. As a reader I want a good story. It doesn’t have to be “right” or “wrong”. Just make me want to read it and hate for the ending to come and you’ve done “right”.


  5. katherinedeane says:

    Awesome, Liv! Well said!
    I’ve had a lot of difficulties coming to terms with the lines on the DD side of things, this past year. It is so nice to see other people blurring the lines, or even better, extinguishing them.
    I love the cover too.
    This looks like such a fun book.
    TBR’ing 🙂


    • Liv Honeywell says:

      Thank you, Katherine :). I’m glad you liked the post. I love the cover too – so pleased with it :). There is an intense and quite serious bit in the middle of the book, but it does have quite a lot of humour because real relationships do :).


  6. Elin Gregory says:

    I missed this post when it was posted. Found it now while looking for the SSS. Thanks both for posting. I used to write a bit of DD and gave up when a domme I respected told me I had it all wrong – that writing the comfort of safety, the grounding by establishing limits that would be reviewed, the physical punishment that had nothing to do with sex was improper and unrealistic. So this bit of your post really struck home:

    “As far as I’m concerned, the only rule of BDSM or DD is that there are no rules. It’s what you make of it and what suits the people (however many there are and of whatever type, sex or orientation) in the relationship.”

    I’ve no plans to dust off those old stories, but I’m glad to see I didn’t completely waste my time with them. Thank you.


    • Liv Honeywell says:

      Oh Elin, I’m so sorry that happened to you. What you said doesn’t sound unrealistic to me and I hope one day you will pick your stories up again. I don’t think any writing we do is ever wasted :).

      I’m so glad my post was helpful to you 🙂


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