Gender bent Achilles Now Available!

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Achilles, the fearsome warrior, living as a girl?  The story dates back to ancient times and has been told and retold in operas, epic poems and novels. (See my previous post on this subject for additional details!) Now, I have written my own 21st Century version of this tale in which Achilles’ mother lures him into drinking a magic potion that turns him into a maiden!  Soon, he finds himself living among the daughters of the King of Skyros, struggling to deal with his first crush as a girl!

It’s full of romance and gender bending fun as Achilles finds himself in love a girl who wants him to take on the role of the submissive girlfriend!

Links– and there are free samples to be read:

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Forsooth, a TG Opera from the 1700s!

 

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(Photo: Discovery of Achilles on Skyros)

Achilles, the mighty warrior, pretending to be a girl and fighting off the manly advances of a king?  Finding himself pestered on all sides by people determined he should become a bride?  This and more all happens in John Gay’s 1700s opera, Achilles in Petticoats.

The story of Achilles and how his mother, the nymph Thetis, convinced him to live as a girl dates back to ancient times and has been the subject of paintings, sculptures, epic poems and operas in French, Spanish and, happily for me, English!  For a listing of the many depictions of this event, check out the Achilles on Skyros Wikipedia page.

The Opera itself, Achilles in Petticoats, can also be read online and features some scenes that, unfortunately, could have come right out of 21st century TG fiction.  I say unfortunately because it shows how little has changed in terms of women being sexually harassed.  Here, we see a man subjected to these kinds of sexist treatments, and that is what this opera explores, with songs such as this, a duet between Achilles and Lycomedes as the king is trying to pressure Achilles into sex, leading to a threatened rape.  This is the lead in and then the duet.  Notice how Lycomedes assumes Achilles is only pretending (s)he’s not interested:

 

Lycomedes:  Since your obstinate behavior then makes violence necessary–

Achilles: You make self-preservation, sir, a necessity–

Lycomedes:  I won’t be refused!

Air IX

 

Lycomedes:  Why this affectation?

Achilles: Why this provocation?

Lycomedes: Must I bear resistance still?

Achilles: Check your inclination.

Lycomedes: Dare you then deny me?

Achilles: You too far may try me

Lycomedes: Must I then against your will?

Achilles: Force will never ply me!

(Achilles pushes Lycomedes from him with great force and throws him down).

One of the more interesting twists in most versions of the story is that Achilles agrees to learn to walk and talk and live as a girl because he is in love with Deidamia, one of the king’s daughters, and the only way he can get close to her is if he pretends to be a girl.  So, it is full of gender role bending fun as it is his desire for a woman that makes Achilles willing to live as one.  There is also an interesting aspect in most version in that is is  his mother, Thetis, trains him to “graceful gait and modest tongue.”  It’s an interesting dynamic, a mother being the one who takes her manly and macho son and feminizes him– all to protect him from the early death it has been foretold awaits him at Troy.  But could there be more to it?  Could there be some other factors driving Thetis to this unusual plan?

I feel like a modern re-telling exploring all these relationships and issues is past due, and so I am starting to write one now, and I am having great fun in exploring these decisions by Thetis for her son, and Achilles for himself.  Of course, in my version, there will be a physical change!

 

 

Hook and Pan Vol 2 Now Available!

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People.  I am excited to announce that the latest installment of my gender bending Neverland series is now available!  In the first book, Peter Pan tricked Captain Hook into dipping his hand into a magic pool that caused him to turn from a big, tough pirate a skinny, love struck girl.

Vol 2 picks up where Vol 1 left off, with action and romance and all the characters we love from the world of Neverland, from Tiger Lilly to Tinker Bell, the Lost Boys to the Pirates!

Check out a free sample or buy it up at the links below:

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As always, I am legally obligated to report that Kim Kardashian does NOT endorse this product.  She doesn’t.  I swear!

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A Boy Goes To Oz!

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For every boy out there who ever wished he could be Dorothy, (or Glinda,) or, actually, anyone else with a love for Oz, I present the latest in the bare essentials line of short gender bender eBooks: The Boy Who Went to Oz.

Let’s say he ends up in dress wearing a very special pair of slippers and leave it at that!  Links below:

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Scroll down for links to other awesome books in this series where Captain Hook’s relationship with Peter Pan gets complicated when Hook finds himself trapped as a girl, and Allan Quartermain, legendary adventurer, finds out what its like to be pressured into being a proper young lady!

Brother Bewildered Now Available!!!!

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Yes!  You heard correctly!  The second book in The Shattered Isles series is now available on Lulu and Amazon in ebook form!  The paper will be available any day now!  I am just waiting for it to process.

For those who have not yet come to visit The Shattered Isles, the books tell the story of Crown Prince Serren, first in line to the throne and the embodiment of male privilege.  That is, until his sister uses forbidden magic to turn him into a girl.  As Pattenia’s younger sister, Serren no longer has claim to the throne and watches as his sister takes his crown and consigns him to a life of corsets and gowns.

Book II continues his struggles learning to live as a princess, while his sister continues her journey into masculine territory, going off to war and adventure!  I will say if you have as much fun reading it as I had writing it, you will be in a blissful state beyond words for the duration!

 

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LULU

 

The Hero’s Journey: TG Style

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When I began writing the first in my Hero series, I started off with a desire to marry Joseph Cambell’s theories as outlined in Hero with a Thousand Faces to genderfluid fiction.  I thought it would be interesting and fun to use the theory– which has served as the basis for an array of very successful movies from Star Wars to The Matrix to Knocked Up– and apply it to the case of a man who finds himself trapped in the body of a woman.

For those who aren’t familiar, Joseph Campbell was a scholar who decided to study all the world’s myths.  He was intrigued to discover that certain stories were told in every culture throughout history.  The names changed, the settings, but the essence of the stories was the same.

One of the most persistent was that of The Hero’s Journey.  You can find all kinds of sources out there on the particulars– here’s one—  but the core of the idea is that the hero’s journey is universal because it is all about growing up.  When the story starts, the hero is self-centered, selfish, dependent– like a child.  But, through the course of trials and revelations that occur on their adventure, they are transformed into someone who is other centered, independent– like a parent should be.  This story has universal appeal because everyone is either growing up or has grown up.

And so, I started my own story with a character, Pete O’Malley, who had been a tough guy cop, and now finds himself trapped in the body of a beautiful stripper.  Not only is he a woman– and this is a problem for a lot of reasons including the fact that he was an unconscious chauvinist– but he has also lost his status as an NYPD officer.   So, when the story starts, he is mired in a case of the poor mes, focused entirely on himself and his own struggles, and not worried in the least about how his actions and attitudes or even his sex-change– may be impacting other people.

I won’t say anymore about his journey here, but you can read it for yourself if you haven’t.  The story was meant as a stand alone story, but I found myself interested in the character of Pete as well as the others we meet along the way, and so I eventually wrote a sequel and a kind of flash sideways that explored how Pete’s partner dealt with his own sex-change and why his response was so much different than Pete’s.

In all the books, I wanted to have my characters discover their best, heroic selves as a result of their being turned into women, and in each case I felt the character’s personality would have an impact on how they adjusted and accepted or struggled against their new lives as well as their obligations.

I feel the Hero saga is among my best work, and as I finish the third book, I am excited myself to see how all of these characters continue their heroes journeys, and how those journeys transform and remake them into different and, in most cases, better people.

 

Zeus. Goddess. The Metanoia

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I felt like Zeus needed a sex-change.  That was my first thought when I started playing with the idea of a genderfluid book set among the world of the Olympian Gods.   As selfish an a-hole as any mortal man has ever been, Zeus had all the worst traits of masculinity, having done such wonderful things as rape his sister and then force her to marry him.

Sunday school must have been truly disturbing back in the days of ancient Greece, and probably caused more than a little uneasiness among siblings.

So, I figured, let me put this rapacious and repulsive embodiment of the worst of masculinity into a female body and explore what happens to him. I sat down to write what I thought was going to be a forced femme/vengeance story, but then I just couldn’t seem to write it.Nothing was coming out that felt good to me.

I started and stopped more than a few times.  Put it away and wrote some other material.  Figured it was just one of those ideas that wouldn’t work, but it wouldn’t go away.  Every time I finished a story, the idea of doing a TG story featuring Zeus would come back to me and linger.

One day I stumbled upon a New Zealand television series called The Almighty Johnsons, in which the Norse Gods were reborn in modern times as a bunch a beer swilling kiwis,  so I thought to do something similar with the Greek Gods;  Zeus and company would be reborn as fashion models working for Olympian Fashions.

But the story just turned campy, and I felt like I wasn’t really getting at what I wanted to get at.   Freud had based a lot of his ideas regarding all the stuff percolating in our subconscious minds from his readings of the Greek myths, and I wanted the book to be something of a Freudian dream.

Finally, I started to just play around with images, taking classic representations of Zeus and other figures from Greek mythology and giving them a TG twist.

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And then I had an image; Zeus, Lord of the Heavens and King of the Gods, would wake up with breasts.  How would he react?  What would he do?  How would having his body slightly feminized change or threaten or alter his personality?

Once I get started, I often will begin to dream my stories, to wake up with scenes playing out in my mind, or I will see them when I am on the train.   I also plunge into research, in this case learning a great deal about lesser known Greek Gods, such as Kybele, who was born both male and female, and whom makes an appearance in my novel.

The novel became about the relationship of the characters to themselves and others, and how those relationships would be altered as the gods changed not only in their bodies, but in their minds.  How would Zeus relate to the world as he became the goddess of marriage and wife to Hera?  What would happen to Ares as he transitioned from a God of War to a lesser goddess in service to Athena?  How would the goddesses react as their bodies and roles changed?

All in all, I have to say that writing Zeus.  Goddess. was one of the most rewarding experiences I have had as an author.  I was inspired and excited about the discoveries I made as the story unfolded, and I loved expanding my knowledge of Olympian mythology.  Now that one is done, and it is on to the next one, and in order to stave off my usual post publication depression, I am already working on the next one.

This time, I hope to do something I have never done.  I want to write a genderfluid comedy.  I don’t know what else it will be just yet, but I can’t wait to find out!

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