Friday, September 15, 2023

Stigma, then and now - Inspiration for Embracing Passion, by Adriana Kraft @adrianakraft #LGBTQ #EroticRomance #Polyamory


Welcome to Sweet ‘n Sexy Divas! I’m Adriana Kraft, and on the 15th of every month, I’m here to share LGBTQIA+ stories with you—sometimes stories from other authors that have moved me, and sometimes, as today, one of my own.

Embracing Passion, the third and final book in the Passion series, was released on August 18. Writing this series was a labor of love for both myself and my husband, so I thought I’d share some of the backstory:

The series got its start over two decades ago, when I learned that my father’s sister, a pioneering sex researcher, had died. I’ve thought of her often – how proud she would be of what my husband and I are writing, how advanced she was in her acceptance of all sexual orientations, her openness to all sexual practices that do not cause harm, and her enjoyment of erotic art. There’s probably not much out there in the world of sex that she didn’t encounter across the many interviews she conducted.

In some ways, our culture has become far more open about so many topics and practices that were still seen as taboo in her era. But many stigmas still remain. In the Passion series, we wanted to give a nod to my aunt’s heritage – research  in sexuality –as well as to provide erotic entertainment and a happy ending. We wanted to explore the stigma that attaches to adults who have sex on camera for others to view. How do they manage satisfying personal relationships, when their sexual activities will never be exclusive to one person? Can they find a partner who can accept what they do for a living?

In the first two books in the series, the partners who fall in love already work for the fictional Center for Sexuality and Sex Practices. They’re challenged to sort out the difference between great sex and true love, but they don’t have to overcome a partner’s judgment. In Embracing Passion, the hero is an outsider. In fact, he’s a cop, hoping to break up what he’s convinced is a prostitution ring. He is in for more than a few surprises.


A single wrong assumption can be costly…

Now in her late twenties, Rosanne Falcon’s life has finally come together—a Ph.D., a prestigious research job, and two exquisite lovers, one of each gender, to complete the package. The intense bond she shares with Simone Stone was augmented rather than broken when Simone met and married Boyd Roberts, and the three have forged a fulfilling polyamory relationship. More would only be trouble.

Widowed by a tragic accident several years earlier, Detective Thomas Walker is nearing retirement after twenty years on the police force and ready to change careers. Fully convinced the hot redhead who meets truckers at the rest area he’s staked out is a prostitute, he sets out to build his case against her. He is dead wrong, but each layer he uncovers of what she really does for a living challenges long held assumptions. Can he overcome his deep-seated bias to make room for what’s possible?



Attired in sleeping tees, Rosanne and Simone sat propped against the headboard of Rosanne’s bed. Boyd had had the good sense to go on home so his women could talk.

Rosanne scrunched her mouth at Simone. It wasn’t exactly like she wanted to talk, but she didn’t want to be alone, either, and she’d eagerly accepted Simone’s offer to sleep over. She’d prefer to languish in Simone’s arms and make torturously slow love, but Simone seemed intent on prying into her head.

“I still don’t think Tom meant anything by that porn remark,” Simone insisted for the umpteenth time.

Rosanne shrugged. “At the very beginning, he thought I was a call girl. You heard him call me a slut right here in this bedroom. He’s thinks we’re making porn movies behind the guise of education.” She heaved a sigh. “The irony is I interviewed a lot of fine women for my dissertation who happened to be call girls. And I’m sure it’s equally true that many fine women work in the adult industry, too.”

“One woman’s porn is another woman’s art,” Simone chimed in.


Simone laced her fingers through Rosanne’s. “Tom was raised to be skeptical. Hell, he’s a cop.” Simone shook her head. “I never thought I’d be coming to the defense of a cop.”

“Skeptical? That’s bullshit.”

“It’s true,” Simone insisted. “It’s ironic that you and Boyd grew up in similar environments. I expect my community upbringing was closer to Tom’s. We never quite believed all that shit about becoming whatever we wanted to be.”

“But look at you. A Ph.D. sociologist, a competent, strong woman. And Tom’s done well. He’s finishing his masters and could go on if he wants to.”

“I didn’t mean to suggest we’re not successful, but I expect our success shocked a lot of folks who knew us when. I knew I had a chance when I didn’t die before twenty. Tom said something almost like that last night when we were talking. He and I both have a couple teachers to thank who helped us break through that wall of distrust. Tom went the community college route and so did I, never quite believing we’d make it to the next step. Always wondering where the next tuition money would come from. Scholarships were our meal tickets out.” Simone narrowed her eyes. “Did you ever apply for a scholarship?”

Rosanne shook her head. “Not until my graduate fellowship.”

“I thought so. I’m sure Tom can point to teachers or maybe a police captain who saw talent and supported him along his way. For me, that was Harry. He recognized my prospects as a researcher. I’d never have stayed on for the Ph.D. without his encouragement. And Melissa has done the most to help me carve out a meaningful role at the Center.”

“They’re good people.”

“So Tom and I share a streak of skepticism. Don’t you remember how weird I got once I realized Boyd was genuinely interested in me?”

Rosanne chuckled. “You were the last to know.”

“Exactly. Tom probably doesn’t know what to do with you.”

Rosanne crossed her legs at the ankles, determined not to be persuaded by Simone’s logic. “He doesn’t respect me.”



          Embracing Passion Universal Link https://books2read.com/u/bpYaYX

          Passion Series Amazon Link https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0C1ZYW1FH


Award winning author Adriana Kraft is a married couple writing Sizzling Romantic Suspense and Erotic Romance for Two, Three, or More. Whether readers open our romantic suspense or our erotic romance, they can expect characters they care about, hot sex scenes, and a compelling story. Our suspense stories deliver one man, one woman, danger and intrigue. Our erotic romance is edgier and nearly always includes ménage or polyamory, sometimes with two women and a man, sometimes with two (or more) couples. We write our Erotic Romance stories to entertain, of course, but most of all we write them because we believe in happy endings for all who fall in love, whatever their gender, sexual orientation or numerical combination. 

          Website: https://adrianakraft.com

          Social Media Links: https://linktr.ee/AdrianaKraft


Tina Donahue said...

Good for you (and your husband) for writing what you do. Honestly, I have never understood why anyone would care what someone else does in their own bedroom if it's a consensual adult relationship. Long ago, I concluded that people who butt into other people's personal lives are simply deeply unhappy in their own and - as they say - 'misery loves company'. As far as this country has come in accepting people as they are (and were born), there are those who are trying to pull us back into the Stone Age. Let's make certain they don't succeed.

Author H K Carlton said...

Congratulations on the new release, Adriana!

What a thought-provoking post. I had two initial thoughts, yet from different perspectives. First, putting myself in that role, as the parties involved in a relationship where one has sex on camera, I think it would be terribly difficult for most to carry on a long-term relationship like that, especially when, in my experience, most people have trust issues to begin with. It would take a lot of honesty, openness and maybe even confidence from all parties.

Second, as an uninvolved party looking in, I totally agree with Tina's comments, it's nobody's damn business!

Adriana said...

Thanks so much, Tina and H K! My aunt is still my beacon. I just wish her perspective was more pervasive, and I, too, am terribly concerned each time our culture appears to be taking a step backwards. Troubling times.