I’m chuffed to bits to have the wonderful Sallyanne Rogers with me today- and she has a very important message for us, so over to you Sallyanne…
TRY EVERYTHING… INCLUDING MORRIS DANCING
When I first started telling people the next book was about sex and Morris dancing, the reactions were about what you might expect. There were plenty of comments about beardy old men and silly hats and balloons on sticks and how the hell could anyone find that sexy? I’d usually counter by pointing them in the direction of certain photographs of very nice-looking young men with pert bottoms and tight-fitting trousers. Then maybe I’d add a few anecdotes gathered over the years from fellow Morris dancers about the amount of misbehaviour that’s been known to go on at the average festival or weekend away: when you’ve been dancing and drinking and admiring other people’s fancy footwork all day and you’re away from home, let’s say there are opportunities. People who are good dancers are sexy, no matter what style of dancing they go in for: you know they have a sense of rhythm and are comfortable with their own bodies. And they probably have plenty of stamina, and good breath control as well.
There are certainly a lot more young Morris dancers than the lazy stereotypes would have you believe: between cult film A Life With Bells On (2009) and David Owens’ wonderful art piece 5000 Morris Dancers (2010) which mixed live dance performances with a display of pictures combining iconic pop culture imagery such as Imperial stormtroopers and Geri Halliwell’s Union Jack minidress with Morris accessories, it’s something more and more people are getting into.
It was very much a conscious decision to have my main characters, Robbie and Cath, meet for the first time in an indie/goth club rather than at a Morris event, and I decided quite early on to start with Cath choosing to keep her hobby a secret from the gorgeous man she’s just picked up, in case he takes the piss out of her. The rest of the story kind of evolved from there, but I’m happy to admit that one of the themes is the way mainstream culture still likes to portray Morris dancers as the opposite of sexy, and how that simply isn’t true any more – and never really was.
(Cath has just met Robbie for the first time. Her friends already know that she is going to be featured in a documentary about Morris dancers and have been teasing her about it.)
If watching him dance had attracted me initially, actually dancing with him was the thing that finished the job. It was as though we were reading each other’s minds: even though we hardly touched each other at all, every move we made was in harmony. We stayed on the floor for another two tracks and then the DJ put on some awful doom-laden death metal thing, and we looked at each other and headed back toward the bar.
‘Let me get you a drink,’ he said. ‘I got paid yesterday.’
I said yes, thanks, gin and tonic, and then excused myself and bolted off to the loo. I was so turned on I was almost scaring myself. My face felt hot, and I could feel how hard and erect my nipples were, and wanted to check they weren’t poking too obviously through my bra and shirt.
Of course, when I got there, Joanna and Meg were propping up the sink and having a gossip, and both of them wanted to know how I was getting on.
‘We saw you dancing with Eric the Viking, or whatever he’s called,’ Meg said with a grin. ‘Does he know you’re nearly famous?’
‘Oh, do fuck off,’ I said, but not nastily. ‘I told you, no one’s going to see the bloody thing, if it ever gets broadcast. It’ll be on the Single White Insomniac channel at four in the morning, you wait.’
‘And all over YouTube the next day,’ Joanna said, and I growled at her. They dropped the subject after that, but at least it had reduced my physical state to something more like normal, and neither my face nor my chest gave any indication that only a few moments ago I’d been seriously wondering if I was going to come just from standing next to him.
When Cath meets Robbie for the first time, she decides to hold back on telling him she’s a Morris dancer who’s about to be featured in a TV programme about contemporary British culture. She’s not expecting more than a one-night stand in the first place, so there’s no need to complicate things. However, what started out as a bit of fun looks like it could turn into something more, as the two of them find their mutual attraction too strong to resist.The documentary crew are on the hunt for juicy controversies in the run up to the May Day festival at Waterleigh Bridge, and it seems that Robbie has a secret of his own. If he and Cath find out the truth about one another, will it bring them closer or tear them apart?
Thanks Sallyanne!! That sounds like a really fun, sexy read!! Perfect for this summer weather! Kay xx
Sallyanne Rogers has written articles for adult magazines including Forum in the past, and has previously worked on market stalls selling vintage clothes and magazines. This inspired her first novella for Xcite, Midwinter Heat. She has also been a morris dancer for about 15 years.
Her website is sallyannerogers0112.wordpress.com and she is on Twitter @dswsallyanne and on Facebook as Sallyanne Rogers (there is more than one person by that name, though)
Thanks again Sallyanne,