The adultsmart lifestyle community blog is proud to introduce Tanya Simmonds a renowned author of erotica, specializing in the FemDom genre. Tanya is a former criminal defence lawyer who in 2004 wrote her first erotic piece as a result of booking a male stripper. She went on to become a number one bestselling author on Amazon.
Welcome Tanya. So two occupations that are really polar opposites. First off what sparked your interest in criminal law? It was a brave decision to turn your back on a ‘stable’ and ‘lucrative’ career in law.
Put simply – I hated the job. It was originally driven by parental pressure, so I never really had the opportunity to discover my own identity. I was exposed to the most negative sides of life on a daily basis, and the environment thrived on rules and extremely narrow ideas about reality. It was stifling, but I was planning on my ‘jail break’ from day one. I lived very frugally, invested wisely, and after twenty-five years, I escaped with enough money to live off the interest, better than I even had. Freedom is priceless.
What was the catalyst for you to do this? You got right into it and wrote a novel a year. This would have required some dedication to your work. Where did you find the perseverance as writing can be exhausting and challenging?
I’d always had this dream of being a novelist, and now I had the time to pursue it. However, I needed a resume. I was completely unknown, and some time down the line, I learned that the easiest literary genre to get published was BDSM, specifically maledom. However, there was something about that which unsettled me. My experience had taught me that men dominating women was anything but a fantasy. Then I noticed the flipside of the coin – femdom. At face value, it was absurd and almost cartoon-like, and that made me feel more comfortable. The only problem was – I didn’t know anything about it.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?
Ironically, the reason I never suffered from writer’s block is because I didn’t know what I was doing (lol). After I posted my first erotic short story two years earlier, I was approached by members of the BDSM community who wanted me to write stories for them. They were more than happy to disclose their innermost fetish fantasies to me, and while it was all a bit jaw-dropping, they gave a template to work with. I also derived ideas from femdom artwork and imagery online. My task was to weave it into a story line with a common theme.
Your novels are quite unique in that they are BDSM FemDom dealing specifically with orgasm denial. I have read in your bio that this subject choice is somewhat inspired as a result of the masturbation prohibition of your partner at the hands of the Pentecostal cult. Can you tell us a bit more about this?
The more I looked into it, the more I became aware that this had to be the hook. Femdom is fantasy. Masturbation prohibition isn’t. With this concept on board, I felt more confident that I could inject elements of reality and believability into the narratives.
Masturbation prohibition can be found throughout history, up unto the present day, especially among certain religious communities and penal systems. From the church-ruled Middle Ages, to the governess culture of the Victorian era, to modern religious cults (especially Pentecostal, Mormon, and Jehovah’s Witness sects) and the US penal system; this demonstrably-lethal and sadistic monster is still alive and well in the 21st Century.
This seemed to be the theme of many of your books. What was it like to write erotica on a subject that you opposed?
Indeed, I am opposed to it. It’s an arbitrary form of torture that carries numerous identified health hazards, both mental and physical. It also demonstrates the most extreme examples of totalitarianism (the denial of an individual’s right to body and thought) for which there is no place in a supposedly-civilized democracy.
Whilst it is graphically illustrated in my novels, the personality types who enforce it are demonized with a wide variety of negative traits (hypocrisy, neurosis, sociopathy, and psychopathy.) The femdom enthusiast will lap up the scenes with eager passion, but between the lines, I am also having my say. One can’t destroy a monster without first showing it.
The following books of a series were written by you – The Paramount Rule – Book 1 The Gaol: The Paramount Rule – Book II Reformation: The Paramount Rule – Book III, Under the Paramount Rule: Tales of Oakpark Grange ending with the book ‘The Penitentiary’ Which was your favorite and why?
‘The Penitentiary’ is most definitely my favorite of the five novels. It was originally written and published in 2012, toward the end of my journey into BDSM literature. The first two, ‘The Paramount Rule – Book 1’ and ‘The Gaol: The Paramount Rule – Book II’ were very much ‘fan-driven’. By the time I got to ‘Reformation: The Paramount Rule – Book III’, I felt ready to put my own stamp on the series. Nothing like ‘Paramount Rule III’ exists anywhere else. The creativity is taken to the next level, along with numerous shock twists, and an array of diverse personality types that leads to the most controversial ending in femdom history.
With ‘The Penitentiary’, I was closer to writing the type of book I truly wanted to write than ever before. It’s very story-based, with elements you wouldn’t expect to find in a femdom novel. Set in the modern era, I used a more contemporary writing style than in the Paramount Rule series, and wrote it as an-almost mainstream novel. In addition to some extremely graphic sex scenes, it also includes strong character development, unremitting drama, action sequences, cliffhangers, and ends with two of the most jaw-dropping twists I ever wrote. It’s what I would describe as a ‘femdom thriller’, and plays out somewhat like a movie-of-the-week.
In many of your novels there is an integration of fact and fiction that has been twisted to fit the fictional femdom tyranny. Things like the penis guillotine, the nullifier, and incarcerated ban on masturbation. Did you do much research on these things?
Yes, I did, and it still horrifies me. Whilst I don’t know of any such thing as ‘penis guillotine’ to have actually existed, I did discover a few terrors that seemed to be heading in that direction. During the Victorian era, inner-spiked penis rings were fitted upon young boys to prevent night time erections. In places like Somalia today, young girls are routinely clitoradectomized by their own family members as a means of preventing sexual pleasure and ensuring chastity. Religious dogmas about sexual desire and masturbation continue to traumatize the young and impressionable in some sections of society. It has also led to documented teenage suicides. Fed on a diet of hellfire myths that make them terrified of their own sexuality, over which they have absolutely no control; it’s really not difficult to see how such tragedies can occur. And all in the name of totalitarian control.
The US penal system employs an anti-masturbation rule in most prisons today. The idea underpinning it is to prevent prisoners from ‘getting it out’ and masturbating in front of female officers as a means of intimidation. That’s fair enough. The problem is in the wording of the rule itself. It simply stipulates ‘masturbation’ and makes no reference to specific circumstance. A vindictive corrections officer can report an inmate if she catches him masturbating discreetly under the sheets with the lights out as a result of this lack of specification. This usually sends the inmate to solitary confinement for up to two months. When young, virile men are incarcerated with no access to any sexual outlet whatsoever, testosterone is going to be rife. This, in turn, will increase aggression and endanger the very lives of the officers who seek to enforce the regulation. In the UK and Europe, such a rule would be considered a serious human rights violation – as is solitary confinement. Both fall under directives which prohibit cruel and unusual punishment.
The paperback book business has taken a knock over the years with online and a couple of your publishers went bust. How has that impacted upon your career? It has been said recently that ‘The Penitentiary’ is going to be your last novel. Why?
After I wrote The Paramount Rule Trilogy, it was taken on by a publisher in the UK. Soon afterwards, they went bankrupt. It was then picked up by a publisher in the US, but they wanted me to re-edit the Trilogy into a series of stand-alones with no plot connection to one another. I reluctantly agreed, and after the release of the first one, I was head-hunted by several other publishers of erotica. These titles (The Paramount Rule, Prisoners of the Governess, Reformation, Reformation: Stronghold, Under the Paramount Rule, and The Penitentiary) were ultimately released through four publishers between the US and the UK. But, alas, it was not to last. The last publisher folded in early 2016, and the publishing rights returned to me.
In 2017, I decided to polish up my original, unpublished series, The Paramount Rule Trilogy, and release them myself. By November, 2017, I had self-published all five titles on Amazon and initiated a marketing campaign. That’s when I saw my publisher’s problems for myself. Virtually no book promotion companies will touch these titles. All of them stipulate ‘NO EROTICA’. In addition, Amazon suppresses them from public visibility so they are very difficult to discover by chance. Amazon have also recently started banning books of this nature outright. It’s only a matter of time before I receive an email from them, telling me my books have been removed from sale.
I have a plot in mind for ‘Penitentiary 2’ and I’ve had a few requests for it. But what could I possibly do with it? It would be an enormous amount of work, not to mention the expense of cover design and initial promotion (albeit with only four promotion companies that will touch them.) With so much against me, I cannot conceive of where I could go with it now.
What is next for Tanya Simmonds?
Other than being at a loose end, I do enjoy life. I travel a lot, so it’s a lot like a living vacation.
For anyone who might be interested, ‘The Paramount Rule – Book I’ is currently FREE on Amazon Kindle:
Rick is the owner of the Adultsmart, an online sex toy shop that stocks a huge range of adult orientated prouducts. He has been involved in the adult lifestyle industry for more than 25 years. Rick is an active sex blogger who provides a wealth of information and experience. He is an advocate of equality for gender and sexuality.