Carnal Machines

Another sale!

The short story Infernal Machine, which originally appeared in the anthology Carnal Machines, has been accepted into the 2014 Best Men’s Erotica from Burning Book Press!

Infernal Machine was written by my close personal friend Elias A. St. James. (wink)

Posted by EASchechter in Carnal Machines, forthcoming works, Happy New Year, happy-happy- joy- joy, SOLD!, upcoming work, 0 comments

Audio books???

Just when I think it can’t get any better, someone shows me it can.

I found out tonight that Carnal Machines is now available as an audio book through



carnalmachinesThis wonderful book includes The Succubus, which was the reason DL King actually PITCHED this anthology (true story — I sent Succubus to her for her anthology Spank, and she sent back a lovely rejection saying “I love this. It isn’t right for this anthology, but I really love it. Would you mind if I pitched an anthology to my publisher so I can use it?”

Would I mind?

Also included in here is the Elias A. St.James short story Infernal Machine. And for those of you not in on the joke, Elias is me, too.

I love this anthology to little bitty pieces. I haven’t gotten my copy of the audiobook yet, but I will. I can’t wait to hear it!!!



Posted by EASchechter in audiobooks, Carnal Machines, SQUEEE, 0 comments

Upcoming appearance!

The Writer’s Studio
Central Florida Romance Writers of America
Saturday, November 5th
10:00 AM
Casselberry Public Library, 215 N. Oxford Rd., Casselberry, FL 32707

I’ll be in the spotlight as part of the Writer’s Studio program with the Central Florida Romance Writers of America. I’ll be reading from Carnal Machines, answering questions and having a good time! If you’re in the area, and at all interested in learning about the craft of writing or about the RWA, come check it out.

I will have signed copies of Carnal Machines for sale.

Following my portion of the program, there will be a presentation by Eileen Horan on Online Safety for Women.

Posted by EASchechter in appearances, author chat, Carnal Machines, ex-cathedra from my navel, promotions, public displays of geekery, 0 comments

Blog Tour: Carnal Machines, Smut and the life of a writing mom.

Welcome! Pull up a chair! Have a cookie! Tea, anyone? Welcome to my place. It’s not home, but it’s much.

Today, I’ll be adding my contribution to the blog tour for Carnal Machines, my latest anthology appearance.

Here, have an excerpt from The Succubus:

The fourth floor is usually quiet, with only the hum of machinery and the distant voices from the floors below. The men do not return to the fourth floor after their initial encounter with me. They desire something more familiar, more in keeping with their personal fantasies. More safe. So I wait, alone, and the silent servants tend to my needs. This evening will be different. I know it already. I can hear Madame’s familiar step on the stair, and another, heavier step with her.

She enters first, the train of her evening gown sweeping the floor as she moves to the table and lights the lamp. The man lingers in the door, peering into the gloom. He wears pristine evening dress, and the lamplight picking out the gold links in his watch-chain and the gleam of the ruby on his left hand. The walls have already whispered his secrets to me: the second son of a Duke, one who was never expected to take the reins of power. One who came, all unexpected, into an inheritance that was never meant to be his. His older brother was dead of typhoid, gone without a son to succeed him, and so the younger son was now Earl Hathaway. It was no surprise to us that the late, lamented Reginald Warwick, Earl Hathaway had died without issue―he had also borne the collar and lock in this house, and had shown a definite preference for the third floor. It will be interesting to see what the new Lord Hathaway prefers. His name, the walls have told me, is Nigel.

“You can come in,” Madame says. “She won’t bite you.” She laughs, and leaves the lamp to go to the far wall, and the switches there. She throws them, one at the time, and light floods the room.

I hear him gasp, and I know what he sees. The ceilings in this room are high, and although they try to hide it with draperies, you can still see the machines that tower overhead, disappearing into the shadows above the lights. The machines hum and churn, gears half the size of a man moving in the eternal dance that gives me life. Occasionally they release puffs of fragrant steam into the air, making the entire room warmer than would normally be considered comfortable. There is very little furniture in the room, most of it covered with drapery against dust and future need. And then there is me. Shining silver and chrome, gleaming brass and copper, I lie in wait, reclined on the wide couch as might a goddess whilst she awaited her worshipers.

“But… it’s clockwork!” he blurts out, stepping into the room. He looks around, expecting to see a living woman. But, of course, there is no one else in the room.

Madame sniffs slightly, “Of course she is. I did explain that to you, did I not?”

Lord Hathaway has the grace to look embarrassed, “You did, but… the others all look… alive. This one…” he gestures wildly.

“She was the first, created by my late husband,” Madame says, walking over to my couch. She brushes her nails over my shoulder and continues, “The others came later, and I refined the forms to make them more… approachable. Despite her form, the Succubus is the most complex of all the automatons.”

“How can that be? It looks like a statue!” He takes a step toward the couch and points at me. “It is a statue!”

Madame runs her fingers over my gleaming silver skull, “Oh, this is just the focal point, Your Lordship. The Succubus encompasses this room.”

He looks around, his eyes wide, “The whole room?”

“The whole of this floor, actually. As I said, she is very complex.” Madame makes her way back to the wall and stands near the bell-rope. “Now, it is customary for the first appointment to be with the Succubus. Did your brother not tell you this?”

Lord Hathaway shakes his head. “All Reg told me was that I would not believe what I found here. He wouldn’t say more.” He swallows, looking nervously at the figure on the couch, and then back at Madame, “Is it safe?”

Madame laughs, “My dear sir, you’ll be as safe here as in your own mother’s arms, if that is your desire.”

He looks at her sharply, “What does that mean?”

Madame just smiles, “You’ve seen what we offer. Surely it’s no surprise to you that there are some who prefer an element of risk. Don’t you agree?”

He does, although I doubt that any would see it but me. His breathing quickens, ever so slightly. The flush in his cheeks heightens, just a touch. He looks at me again, studying me, silent. After a long moment, he turns back to Madame, “What do I have to do?”

She draws from the reticule that hangs from her wrist one of the shining silver collars, the black lock dangling from the end. She smiles at my soon-to-be paramour, “Take off your clothes.”

Still with me? Oh, good.

A little about me, now. I’m a former English teacher, and now SAHM (Stay-at-home-mom) to an active little boy. I can say honestly that he is one of the reasons that I don’t write as quickly as I would like to. (The other reasons are Facebook and Sherlock. Mostly Sherlock. Benedict Cumberbatch….yum…)

Sorry. Where was I? Oh, yes. My son. He’s a very bright little boy. Wherein lies my problem…

NOTHING kills momentum on a sex scene faster then having a small child (he was three years old when this happened) crawl into your lap, look at the laptop screen and say “Mommy, what are you writing?” Writing while he was around was always dicey, and not a lot got done. However, I could sometimes get a couple hundred words out while he played with Legos or trains. He was and is an unusually focused little boy, and actually enjoys playing by himself. Until he doesn’t, and then Mommy has to come play.

And then he taught himself to read. This wasn’t unexpected. I was reading at three, and so was my husband. Our son definitely inherited our love of words, and he reads anything (the grocery store is always great fun for him).

Think about that for a moment… See my problem?

This is why I can’t write when he is awake or at home. My writing time is restricted to the three hours in the morning when he is off being bored out of his mind (otherwise known as Pre-K), and the two hours between his bed-time and mine (times enforced by the husband, who gives me a little leeway, but can’t sleep if I’m not in the room, and won’t let me take my laptop to bed). I might squeeze a few more hours of writing out during the week if we go to the toddler play place (good for another year!), and I am looking forward with great glee to August, when school starts and someone starts full-day kindergarten. But that is three months from now… and summer vacation starts at the end of the month.

This is what I anticipate my day to look like once June starts (based on the fact that I’ve had a small boy home with a GI bug for three days now):

7:30 Out of bed. Into the shower.
7:45 – 8:30  Power up the laptop and eat breakfast while reading email and checking out the blogs. Maybe get some writing done before someone wakes up.

(This, of course, assumes that he hasn’t pulled his usual trick of waking up before dawn and coming down to find us.  Ever seen The Lion in Winter? “When the King’s off his ass, nobody sleeps!” Yeah, King Henry II had nothing on a pre-schooler…)

8:30 – 10:00 Breakfast and Playhouse Disney. Maybe writing in here!
10:00 – 5:00 Whatever else we’re doing the rest of the day.
5:00 – 7:00 Dinner prep and dinner.
7:00 – 8:00 Bedtime  Routine.

Then I get to write until 10:00. At which point I fall over and am unconscious until it all starts over again the next morning.

Such is the life of the writing Mommy. Words are squeezed in in dribs and drabs around the rest of my life. It’s amazing I get anything done at all! (In truth, this post here? Was written four days ago while he was at school, and edited last night after he went to bed because I forgot to put the picture in).

Right at this moment, I’m very close to the end of House of Sable Locks, the novel that comes after The Succubus. (Yes, we’re going back to the House! We’ll see outside the fourth floor! And we’ll find out Madame’s real name…) However, there is no way I’ll be finishing before Memorial Day. Add to that the fact that I will probably get the initial edits over the summer for my upcoming novel (Princes of Air, coming from Circlet Press!), and I foresee a lot of time spent at the play place this summer.

So, that’s where I am. Plugging away at the new manuscript, waiting for the edits on the novel I just sold, and trying not to let the boy learn any  words that will make for interesting parent-teacher conferences in the fall. (and won’t THAT be an interesting conversation?)

Oh, and my son calls me a story-maker.

You know what? I wouldn’t change a minute of it!

Posted by EASchechter in author chat, Carnal Machines, children, writing-mom, 2 comments

Reviews and a Blog Tour

Carnal Machines has been out for about a month now, and the reviews are, on the whole, quite positive!

Amazon has three reviews up, all of them 5 star!

The Erotic Readers and Writers Association has another nice one.

Over at Erotica Revealed, the reviewer calls Infernal Machine “tender, funny and sexy all at once.”

There have been some good reviews up on Goodreads, too. And one bad one, the only negative review I’ve found so far. It’s here, for comparison.

(No, bad reviews don’t bother me. You can’t please everyone, and I find it interesting to see what resonates with people and what does not. Growth, it does a writer good!)

Also, the Carnal Machines Blog Tour starts today! Here’s the schedule:

May 1 D. L. King

May 2 Teresa Noelle Roberts

May 3 Kathleen Bradean http:/

May 4 Jay Lawrence

May 5 Kannan Feng

May 6 Essemoh Teepee

May 7 Elizabeth Schechter

May 8 Delilah Devlin

May 9  Tracey Shellito

May 10 Renee Michaels

May 11 Elias St. James

May 12 Lisabet Sarai

May 13 Janine Ashbless

I have no IDEA what I’ll be writing about!

Posted by EASchechter in Carnal Machines, 0 comments

Excerpt: Infernal Machine

>In honor of the EARLY release of Carnal Machines, I decided to put up a little something. Here’s an excerpt from Infernal Machines, which I wrote under my pen-name of Elias A. St. James.



Gently, I eased my tool into the opening, easing my way down the tight passage. I made sure to restrain myself, knowing that as eager as I was, I might damage something if I simply rushed in. Instead I moved deliberately, seeking the treasures hidden within….
“Blast!” My probe clattered to the floor as I jammed my bleeding thumb into my mouth and glared at the machine in front of me. Across the room, my lover looked up from his book.
“Elijah?” he asked, clearly wanting an explanation.
“The infernal machine savaged me,” I grumbled around my thumb. I turned so that I could look at Sasha, a much more pleasant view than the obstinate machine that now seemed to be laughing at me. Aleksandr Andreyevich Koslov, affectionately called Sasha, was sprawled indolently on our bed, looking very much the dissolute Russian nobleman. I’d been dizzy in love with Aleksandr since our first day at L’Académie des Sciences Mécaniques in Paris. And, for some reason I never understood, he loved me in return. It couldn’t have been my breeding; compared to his bloodlines, my own pedigree was pure peasantry. My father was a rabbi in a small village just outside Calais, my mother a rabbi’s wife and the daughter of another rabbi. I was the oldest of six children, and until two years ago, the one destined to follow my father’s footsteps. Until the day I took apart the boiler in my mother’s kitchen and redesigned it so that it was twice as efficient and used less than half the fuel. When my father saw what I had done, he decided that my younger brother would be better suited to the life of a rabbi. I, Elijah Moyse Saloman, was to be an Artificer, the first ever from our village. I’d arrived in Paris without even the barest hint of the world I was going to be thrust into. Wild, wicked Montmarte, with its cabarets and music halls, and its whores of either sex. And wild, wicked Sasha, whom I loved like I loved no other.
Sasha swung his legs over the edge of the bed and stood up, crossing over to sit down on the floor next to me. He was incredibly handsome, his long, dark hair hanging loose around his shoulders, his shirt hanging open to better face the heat of the summer afternoon. He frowned slightly at the machine and then poked me in the shoulder. “So what is this thing? You’ve not told me yet.”
“I haven’t?” I frowned, thinking back. Surely I’d mentioned something…?
“No. For four days you’ve barely said a word to me. You haven’t eaten, unless I was feeding you. The only times you’ve come to bed was when I picked you up and put you there myself, usually after you’d passed out on the floor. So what is this thing that you are so enamored of? Other than being the most singularly ugly chair that I have ever seen?”
I grinned at his very apt description; it wasa singularly ugly chair, if that was all it was. Surely, that was all the that ironmonger had thought it, or else he’d never have let me have it for the pittance I paid. I reached out and ran my fingers over the now-bright brass. “It’s a Carstairs machine.”
“It isn’t!” Sasha gasped, leaning closer. “How can you tell?”
“The hinges. Look at them; no one but Carstairs used that odd box hinge.” It had been that detail that had caught my eye and sent me scrambling after the cart. “That was my first hint. Then I found his mark when I was polishing the brass. There, where the seat casts a shadow. Do you see it?”
Sasha nodded, “I see it… but none of his other works are this ugly. His work was always simple and elegant.”
He was right, of course. Carstairs had been the Artificer’s Artificer, and his work had always been simple in form. The complexity, he’d always said, was on the inside. The design on this chair was elaborate, with brass scroll-work ornamenting nearly the entire construct. “An early work, do you think?” I asked.
“I don’t know,” Sasha shrugged. “What does it do?”
That was the question I was hoping he wouldn’t ask. “I don’t know yet,” I admitted. “I’ve cleaned and polished the entire thing, I’ve made certain that the boiler and the tank work, I’ve replaced anything that looked like it might have needed to be replaced, but I can’t get into this compartment.” I tapped the panel that formed the pedestal for the seat. “It does open… I think. There is a seam here, and hinges on the edges.”
Sasha leaned in close enough that I could smell the light fragrance of the soap he used. He nodded, “I see. Well, that is annoying. You can’t tell what it does without opening the case, and if you break open the case, it might not work at all.” Sasha looked at me with his fabulously wicked grin. “Have you fired the boiler?”
I shook my head, “Not yet. I wanted to be certain that everything else worked first.”
“And everything works now?”
“As far as I can tell.” I glared at the recalcitrant chair. Without a word, Sasha got to his feet, fetched the pitcher from the washstand, and ceremonially poured water into the tank.
“Then we shall fire this Carstairs’ machine and see what the master wrought and what the student rescued!” he declared, throwing an elaborate bow in my direction. I laughed and went to fetch some kindling.
It took time to get a good head of steam. When finally the gauges showed that we had adequate pressure, Sasha came to stand next to me in front of the chair to watch the show.
Nothing happened. We watched and waited in nervous silence for nearly five minutes, then Sasha coughed and looked at me.
“Is there… a switch? A lever? Some way to turn it on?” he asked.
I shook my head slowly, “Not that I found. You look. Maybe I missed it.”
He knelt down and crawled around the blasted chair, hunting for a switch that I already knew didn’t exist. When finally Sasha was convinced, he sat down next to me on the floor, shoulder pressing against mine, and cursed roundly in Russian before repeating himself in French.
“Four days! Four days you’ve wasted on this…. infernally ugly chair, and all it does is clutter the room!” he railed while I sighed and turned away, starting to clean up my tools. To my surprise, Sasha grabbed the back of my shirt and pulled me into his arms, my back against his chest. “Four days where all you’ve done in bed is snore at me,” he whispered into my ear, tugging my shirt open with one hand, his other hand slipping into my trousers and closing around my quickly hardening cock. I leaned my head back against his shoulder, and was rewarded by his teeth along my neck, nibbling just hard enough to sting. He tugged at my shirt, pulling it off my shoulders, dipping his head down to lick the spot where my shoulder met my neck. Then he shifted, tipping me back until I was lying on the floor with him kneeling over me. He ran his hands down my chest to my waist, fumbling at the buttons on my trousers; I could see how his own trousers were bulging outwards, and moaned softly, reaching for his waist. He laughed and pushed my hands down, tugging my shirt and braces down so that my arms were tangled in them.
Posted by EASchechter in Carnal Machines, excerpt, 0 comments


>I got my author copies of Carnal Machines today. Opened the package and squee’d loud enough that bats all over the state are going “Damn, what was that?”

Posted by EASchechter in Carnal Machines, 0 comments

>Revised TOC for Carnal Machines


Just got the notice that there was a revision to the order of stories for Carnal Machines. This is the final TOC. I’m still amazed that I have the blow-off story!
Human Powered by Teresa Noelle Roberts
The Servant Question by Janine Ashbless
Slight of Hand by Renee Michaels
Mutiny on the Danika Blue by Poe Von Page
Deviant Devices by Kannan Feng
The Perfect Girl by Jay Lawrence
Dr. Mullaley’s Cure by Delilah Devlin
Her Own Devices by Lisabet Sarai
Lair of the Red Countess by Kathleen Bradean
Infernal Machine by Elias A. St. James
Doctor Watson Makes a House Call by Essemoh Teepee
The Treatment by D. L. King
Lucifer Einstein and the Curious Case of the Carnal Contraption by Tracey Shellito
The Succubus by Elizabeth Schechter
Is it May yet???

Posted by EASchechter in Carnal Machines, upcoming books, 0 comments