So I came to the conclusion, last year – after canceling a number of holds that arrived for pick-up during very cold or very icy weather – that I probably should just put all my library hold requests on pause between mid-December and, like, early April. Which has given me a wonderful excuse to pick up, page through, and finish reading a slew of books on my shelves that I’ve been putting off reading (sometimes for years) because they didn’t have a deadline/return-date attached to them. I recently finished reading Jia Qing Wilson-Yang’s Small Beauty – which is, among other things, a really lovely story about ancestors – as well as Patty Krawec’s Becoming Kin: And Indigenous Call to Unforgetting the Past and Reimagining Our Future, a non-fiction work which does what it says on the tin. I’m about halfway through Alicia Elliott’s A Mind Spread Out on the Ground and John Beckett’s Paganism In Depth: A Polytheist Approach, as well but, this being a blog about gender, sexuality, and kink, I thought it relevant to chat a little about some of the books on D/s that I’ve finally been cracking open and starting to work through.

Basically, a friend of mine asked me to take a good look over her latest book manuscript, and it got me thinking about, well, a lot of things. Things like “Why is it so easy for me to be a Mommy, even though – ten years in – I’m still feeling clueless about how to be an Owner??” Things like “What is the difference – in mindset, in behaviour – between being The Boss and being The Owner in the kink sense of the words?”

Part of the answer, at least to the first question, is that being “Mommy” means letting myself indulge in all the nurturing, smothering, touchy-feely, know-it-all stuff that comes very easily to me and that I needed an outlet for, and which – at least when it comes to stuff like making cookies and reading aloud – are things I find enjoyable and that reliably help me feel connected to my sweeties. They’re also – in some ways more than others, sure – things that are mostly easy for other people to like about me. Like, they may not appreciate the unsolicited advice, no kidding, but my tendency to offer a listening ear, make a casserole, or give really great hugs (when asked for)… tend to be appreciated. They fall in line with “gendering correctly” as a lady person in ways that being sadistic or demanding don’t.

The word for a demanding woman is “nag”. The word for a demanding woman who reliably gets what she wants is “spoiled rotten” and, sometimes, “kept” – none of which really imply being the boss of anybody.

I remember when I first came across the concept of Femme as a queer/ed femininity that was overtly sexual and sexually autonomous in ways that I had only understood were possible for masculine people before. I (still) need to figure out how to be Lola – the woman who gets what she wants, and expresses her wants in the absolute confidence that they’ll be honoured, but who is the “keeper” rather than the kept.

A cropped section of a 1958 poster for the soundtrack to the movie "Damn Yankees", featuring an illustration of a woman with very short, red hair, wearing a lace trimmed, halter-neck bustier and earrings. She appears against a deep orange background next to the words "What Lola Wants, Lola Gets!" in black all-caps text.