Although Jake and I flew in to Atlanta Thursday afternoon, the weekend’s excitement really began on Friday evening at the Eroticon Meet and Greet at the Georgian Terrace Hotel. Some of the first people we met were Lauralyn and Jade (who both rock!) and once I found Molly and DomSigns (who of course know pretty much everyone) we were introduced to more amazing bloggers and friends like Lori, Stranded and his girlfriend Laura, the lovely ladies of Cammies on the Floor, Tonya, Malflic & Lord Raven, Harper, and many more. The night was full of cleavage, kisses, new friends, and tequila shots!
The conference started early Saturday morning with a welcome from Rudy Kiddell, the amazing woman behind Eroticon, and then an Opening Plenary with Jincey Lumpkin, the “Chief Sexy Officer” of Juicy Pink Box. Jincey shared the story of how she started her website and discussed some business 101 basics (like products, market, distribution, and revenue) in a sex-industry related context, complete with her signature class and sass.
After Jincey’s speech, the first round of sessions began, and Jake and I attended When real life and sex writing collide with Molly and Jade. Throughout the session, they both discussed coming out as sex writers and how it has affected their lives and relationships. I really appreciated it when Molly, who is now completely out after initially being anonymous, explained that she only surrounds herself with people who let her be her true self. That doesn’t mean all of her friends participate in her kinky life or even want to hear about it, but they know about her work and don’t judge or insult her for it. As for the people who do, Molly doesn’t care what they think— she knows that other people’s issues with sex are their issues, not hers, and she doesn’t care what they say because that just gives them power over her.
Jade discussed being out as well, and how she sometimes wishes she could be 100% out, but that she prefers to keep her professional life separate. Both Molly and Jade also talked about sex writing and parenting and how they explain what they do to their children in age appropriate ways. I found it especially inspiring when Jade talked about being open with her kids and how her son asked her about something he saw in porn, which led to a healthy discussion on the differences between porn and real sex. For a split second I even considered that I might want to have a kid just so I could be an open, caring, and sex-positive Mom like Jade or Molly. (Keywords: split second.)
Molly is hilarious and a brilliant speaker, and we stayed to listen to her during the next session, when she shared her Top 10 tips for writing a sex blog. I won’t go over them as she’s planning on posting them on her blog (plus they’re her secrets to share), but I will say that I realized I have a lot of work to do if I really want to streamline my site and improve my ranking. That’s alright though; I’m up for the challenge! The next session I attended, Tech Love with the amazing tech superstar Michael Knight, also gave me a lot of new information on how I can improve my blog.
After lunch, we went to the session I was most excited about, Lauralyn’s erotic photography workshop. Lauralyn told us about her story of transitioning from taking sexy self-portraits to catch men’s eyes on dating sites into finding her true passion in life—her signature “cheap camera 10 second timer self-portraiture” and opening her 1 lb. art gallery. At the end of her talk, Lauralyn gave us a demonstration of her technique by stripping down to a nude-leotard, jumping up into a large window, and creating some self-portraits. Everything about Lauralyn inspires me: her persistence, her self-taught talent, her amazing gallery, her energetic personality, and her raw honesty. Some of the goals I have after listening to and meeting her are to push myself to shoot in unfamiliar places more, to shoot more often in general, and to be honest with people about what I do. If she can do it (in a small, extremely conservative town), then so can I!
The sexiest session of the day was the last one I attended, Hands on Kink with Graydancer. Jake and I were interested in rope tying before his session but didn’t really know where to start, so we really enjoyed his demonstrations on Jade and Poetic and purchased one of his DVDs. At the reception after the conference, when M from Cammies on the Floor asked Graydancer to show her husband how to tie her, I jumped in and asked if Jake and I could join as well. So M and I were tied up together in front of some very confused restaurant patrons; it was awesome! I loved the attention and the “adjustments” that M kept giving my rope to make it more…stimulating.
After the reception and impromptu rope tying demonstrations, a group of us stayed for more drinks and after my suggestion went to a strip club that Jake deemed the “tit factory.” It had a kind of odd dynamic—there were lots of hot, fully nude women, but there weren’t any poles, and it was too crowded to have a more intimate experience with any of the dancers. It was a little disappointing, but I got some Scavenger Hunt photos (and a spanking!) afterwards which definitely made up for it. It was a great ending to an amazing weekend.
All of the sessions at Eroticon were fantastic, and I’m glad that Ruby put so much effort into bringing Eroticon to the US. Jake and I met a lot of amazing people, and since the event was relatively small, it had a very intimate and open feel. We are both dying to go to the next Eroticon in Bristol, but aren’t sure if we can swing it…we’ll see!