kINKED is going to be available next week. Before it comes out we wanted to give you a chance to hear directly from some of the contributors.

“Embracing Your Kink”

By Sara Dobie Bauer

The characters in kINKED all have one thing in common: Tattoos. In my story, “Painted Red,” posh Yale boy Ben has successfully hidden his ink kink for most of his life until he meets bad girl Angie—who’s been hiding something of her own. (Namely, her heart.)

In “Painted Red,” if my characters had been honest about their closet skeletons, all the obstacles to their love would have been removed. In this case, fiction resembles life. Face it: we all have kinks. We all have certain things that turn us on, but some people are embarrassed to admit it.

Because I’m a nerd, I adore BBC Sherlock fan fiction. I have a fan following, so I occasionally get messages from readers requesting certain “kinks” be featured in my next story. Recently, I was commissioned to write a bit of smut about Watson and Holmes in which Holmes is young and innocent and Watson has his fun. This kink is called “age play.”

My fan asked I not dedicate the story to her, however, because she feared her kink made her sound like a pervert. I was quick to tell her she was no such thing. In fact, there are tons of Sherlock fan fiction readers who adore this trope. Kinky people are never alone.

Whether you’re into age play, bondage, role-playing, swinging, or cross dressing, it’s important—in sex and in life—to accept who you are and what you want. Great sex is a huge part of happiness. Sex should be celebrated and enjoyed. If you’re into missionary, that’s great. If you’re not but you’re only having missionary, that’s not great.

It’s vital to reach a point in every relationship when you feel comfortable telling your partner what you want in the bedroom. I’m not saying you have to bust out the ball gag for a one-night stand (although I’m not against it). In a committed relationship, though, honesty is make or break.

There’s a scene in the show The Magicians in which mousy Alice admits she doesn’t orgasm when she has sex with her boyfriend. He’s obviously horrified to discover she’s been faking it the whole time, but once she decides to tell him what she really wants (the words “bite me” are involved), she has her Big O moment. She owned her kink, and voila, fireworks!

In “Painted Red,” it takes time for Ben and Angie to work through their hidden desires and fears of being judged. They have to get over their insecurities to find their happy ending. Just like the rest of us.

Photo copyright: Bill Thornhill

Sara Dobie Bauer is the author of “Painted Red” in kINKED. She is a writer, model, and mental health advocate with a creative writing degree from Ohio University. Her short story, “Don’t Ball the Boss,” was nominated for the Pushcart Prize, inspired by her shameless crush on Benedict Cumberbatch. She lives with her hottie husband and two precious pups in Northeast Ohio, although she’d really like to live in a Tim Burton film. She is a member of RWA and author of the paranormal rom-com Bite Somebody, among other ridiculously entertaining things. For more about Sara, visit

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