Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Spotlight and Giveaway with Shakir Rashaan

Shades of Black: Inside the Black BDSM Community

I want to thank Roxanne for having me on her blog today and giving me the opportunity to speak on a subject that most might not be aware of: that there are “Shades of Black”…or people of color (read: black people) who not only practice different disciplines within BDSM, but they do so publicly, too.

While my Nubian Underworld series is immersed with parts of fiction, it is also based on real-time people, including myself and my Beloved, who are actively living within the “lifestyle.” For us, this is a way of life, this is who we are. We just happen to be black.

Why did I choose the turn of phrase “Shades of Black”? Well, it’s not hard to figure that one out. That series has opened the door for a lot of dialog over the past few years, but what if I told you that books and series like mine were around long before that phenomenon showed up? What if I also told you that black people have been actively involved in the BDSM scene for a longer period of time than you might realize?

To be inside the Black BDSM community, regardless of where in the country you might be, is to enjoy the unique flavor that we bring to WIITWD. This is not to say that we do it better or with more swagger or anything like that, but it is to say that we like to put our own spin on something that has been around for a long time.

There are vibrant communities of black people actively engaging in BDSM practices. From Los Angeles to New York, from DC and various parts of Maryland to here in Atlanta where my Beloved and I reside, to other pockets all over the country, there are blacks that enjoy what we have come to affectionately refer to the BDSM lifestyle as, “what it is that we do (WIITWD).” As my main character, Ramesses, so eloquently stated at the beginning of the series, “Now, I think I know what you might be thinking, but here’s the real: this is a lifestyle. Everyone has a little freak in them, but the difference is we have found like-minded people who don’t judge. They just enjoy themselves and the friendships which are made within the lifestyle community, and the freedom of being within that community.”

That community comes with active munches in different cities, with more popping up every month, and events and BDSM conferences that primarily cater to black people, like Atlanta Peachy Kink earlier this month, the annual Black BEAT (Black Expressions, Alternative Tastes) conference later on in August, and the Weekend Reunion last summer, too. Yes, BDSM in and of itself is beautiful to experience with all cultures and races, but there’s something about being able to be amongst those who share the same culture as you from time to time.

A recent acquaintance, LeRougarou, said in an op-ed within his group on the popular social media site, FetLife, that I think sums up the prevailing thought within the Black BDSM community: “I want to hear some rap when I beat ass, dammit! Enigma and EDM and techno gets old. I want to make ‘In Living Color’ references or ‘Martin’ references or ‘Living Single’ references or ‘Harlem Nights’ references and people actually know what the fuck I’m talking about. I want to drink spiked red Kool-Aid and talk about grape drink. I want the deejay to put on ‘Hoochie Mama’ and a gang of ass just starts clappin’. But guess what? I have absolutely zero requirement that those people have to be black. None at all. But guess what? A vast majority of people who can relate to me in all the ways listed above: black people. And I’m not ashamed of wanting to be around just them sometimes.”

That is the reason why I created the Nubian Underworld series. I wanted to showcase a strong, black Dominant male, and a few Dominant females, in a genre that is inundated with their Caucasian counterparts. I also wanted to showcase black male and female submissives, to show that there are black men and women who embrace a term that we’re told we’re not exactly supposed to embrace…Master and slave. Even though there are BDSM erotic novels and romance novels that cover multicultural and interracial relationships, I felt that “we” needed a voice, an outlet, a way for people who have yet to see that, “Hey, black people do this, too.”

Finally, even though the literary world is swooning over shades of grey, that there is still room to revel in shades of black, too.
Chronicles of the Nubian Underworld
Book Two
Shakir Rashaan

Genre: BDSM Erotic Romance

Publisher: Strebor Books/Atria Books
(A Division of Simon & Schuster)

Date of Publication: June 10, 2014

ISBN: 9781593095468

Number of pages: 272
Word Count: 67,000+

Cover Artist: Keith Saunders, Marion Designs

Book Description:

A tale unlike anything else, this second episode in the Chronicles of the Nubian Underworld series continues the erotically charged journey inside Atlanta's African-American Fetish/BDSM community.
"In order to be great, you have to leave your mark. Are you ready to leave your mark?"

After returning from Dubai, a power shift occurs within the Atlanta Fetish community as the "torch" is passed on from Amenhotep to Ramesses and Neferterri. The Palace is being transformed in Ramesses' image, and the new "power couple" is adjusting to life in the spotlight and the benefits -- and headaches -- that come with it.

But as Ramesses puts the finishing touches on establishing the balance of power, Amenhotep has tasked him with a daunting undertaking -- one that will test his will and re-forge a bond that was once broken, cementing his legacy within the sacred "society."

Exotic, decadent, and written by a true insider, Legacy takes you deeper into the Atlanta Fetish/BDSM community, twisting more surprises and revelations that are sure to take your breath away.

Amazon    BN  Books a Million    Personal Autographed Copy


Reagan International Airport, Arlington, Virginia…
I walked off the plane and made my way down to baggage claim to collect my luggage, already plotting in my head how I was going to deal with the task in front of me.
            I walked by the limousine drivers and noticed a rather stacked and stout young lady, about six feet tall, maybe an inch short of that, holding a sign displaying my full legal name.
            I was surprised to see her there to greet me, especially when I hadn’t seen her before in my life. But it was a pleasant surprise to be escorted by such a lovely creature indeed.
            I guess in hindsight I shouldn’t have been too surprised, as I’d suspected Master Seti would spare no expense in making my stay in the DMV, or the DC/Maryland/Virginia area, as pleasant as he could. I’d called the day prior to my departure from Vegas to inform him of my arrival, as such was general protocol with any of the Elders associated with Amenhotep.
            The driver was very attractive. Her distinct features put me in the mind of the Italian peninsula. She was clad in a pencil skirt, teasingly above the knee, and matching blazer, both black in color, and four inch heels. Her lean, muscular frame left no doubt she could handle my luggage with little assistance from me, no matter how much my vanilla-centric chivalry would want to oblige her.
            “Good afternoon, m’Lord, my name is slave nadia. Please follow me to the car, Sir,” nadia announced as she loaded the bags onto a cart and led me out to the parking lot. “Master has alerted me of Your presence, which is why i am driving You to the House, Sir. Master didn’t want You to get lost. He informed me it has been a few years since You’ve been out this way.”
            I laughed at her statement. It hadn’t been that long.
            “Yes, slave nadia, your Master has a way of reminding Me of such things in the most grandiose fashion possible.” I replied. We walked across the lot, and I was impressed to see the Cadillac Escalade Hybrid limousine we approached. “Very nice, slave nadia, your Master shouldn’t have gone to all this trouble.”
            “Sir, if i am allowed to say so, He wanted to make sure You were especially comfortable while You stayed with us,” nadia smiled, looking forward instead of turning back to make eye contact. “He doesn’t make these accommodations for everyone, Sir, so it is an honor to be of such a special service to You.”
            I climbed into the back seat while nadia placed the luggage in the cargo area to prepare for the ride back to the estate. On the middle console was a USA Today newspaper, and packed in a cooler in the opposite seat from me was an assortment of soft drinks and juices and a bag of roasted peanuts.
            “Master thought You would like a light snack before Your arrival, m’Lord.” nadia read my mind before I could ask.
            I smiled. This had sajira written all over this one. I would say shamise also had her hand in this, but there was no telling if she was at the house at the time nadia called to confirm the items sitting on the side of me.
            “Remind Me to thank your Master upon our arrival, slave nadia.” I responded to her as she slid into the front seat of the car. I noticed a slight blush spread across her face at my statement. That meant she knew she would be properly spanked for following her Master’s protocol to the letter.
            We made the trek, beginning from US Hwy 1 heading toward I-395, passing through the intersecting streets that crisscrossed and made up the Alexandria area. I took a sip of the orange juice bottle by the time we crossed over I-395 and continued south heading toward Mount Vernon.
            I was reading the paper as we passed by the shopping malls and department stores, going from the commercial into the residential area, when I felt eyes on me, trying to get a better look at what I was doing. I looked up and met a gorgeous pair of hazel eyes staring back at me with the intensity and heat of a desert sun. She lingered for a moment before those eyes softened and gave rise to a lust their owner wanted to act upon, but she wasn’t quite sure if she should or not.
            nadia tried to conceal her shy streak as she sneaked looks through the rear view mirror as she deftly moved through traffic. She tried to get a peek in right before the fork in the road would either take us to the estate or take us to the Mount Vernon estate, the home of our nation’s first president.
            We kept this dance up for another half mile or so. Every time I caught her looking up at me, she giggled to herself and focused her eyes on the road again, trying to steal as many glances as she could before we arrived.
            I purposely began staring at her through the rear view mirror. The next time our eyes locked, nadia found her fingers tracing the outline of the blazer. She nimbly lowered the mirror to an angle to where I could enjoy the view, and I noticed nadia had unbuttoned her blouse and revealed her bra. I licked my lips at the way the satin caressed her breasts.
            She blushed at my open satisfaction at her exposure, keeping one hand on the steering wheel, using her peripheral vision to keep her eye on the road and on me at the same time, and taking her free hand to expose her right nipple for my further enjoyment. She moved the mirror back to a position to reconnect with my eyes, pouting her lips to blow kisses for a few fleeting moments.
            By now, my manhood had made its presence very much aware to me, and I couldn’t ignore what it obviously wanted my mouth to say. But this was neither the time nor the place to engage in that type of mischief, as it would be a direct violation of the rules of engagement, and my reasonable half understood that. However, my libido silently crept into the far reaches of where I kept the “Beast” at bay, beckoning to it, I have the key to unlock your cage, all you have to do is beg for it.
            I wanted her to beg so badly it made me weak. I imagined her legs wrapped around the small of my back, growling in her ear as I took her in the back seat, the tint in the windows providing the perfect cover in broad daylight before finally getting on with completing the journey.
            nadia sensed my dilemma, and I sensed she was in a bit of a quandary herself. The vehicle slowed for brief interludes, which alerted me to the intimation she was not yet ready to end this dance. Each pause at the stop lights was torture for the both of us, increasing the tension from a simmering boil into an ominous volcano that could blow at any moment
            My intense stare into what I imagined were her now-bright green eyes let her know I was straddling the thin line between commanding her to pull the vehicle over to the first secreted location for a clandestine and ravenous merging of two bodies and thinking better of it and commanding her to cover herself up before we arrived at the estate.
I shook off the lustful state I was in as best I could. I had further business to take care of, and I couldn’t allow myself to let the “chairman of the board” fuck things up because it wanted to get wet for twenty minutes.
            nadia slowed down long enough to make the turn to the street the estate was located, stopping the vehicle long enough for the two of us to gather ourselves and for her to straighten her uniform to look presentable once we entered the compound. Once all was back in its place, nadia put the truck back in gear and we headed toward the house once again.
            I didn’t mind the cat-and-mouse games too much. In fact, it was a bit refreshing to see such a lovely woman nonverbally flirting without the pretenses of titles and station. Well, at least not entirely. The fact that I am a Dominant in this realm, and a Dominant nadia had developed a respect for, might have had something to do with her flirting on the edges. The way I saw it, she, in the brief time we’d shared the same space, developed a passion that was predicated upon her respect for my station, and the good things she had heard from her Master about me.
That was fine by me. It’s not like I could not have had nadia hot and bothered under normal circumstances, but at the same time, it helped to not have had to put the litmus test out there.  
            The next time she looked up at me, I gave a wink letting her know I wouldn’t discuss this little interlude between us with her Master, and blew her a kiss from the back seat to consummate the brief dance between us.
            nadia returned the gesture with a kiss in the mirror at me of her own, letting me know she enjoyed the dance as well, and a wink letting me know we could continue the dance again, with her Master’s permission, whenever I was ready. 
            Sometimes, it’s great to be Pharaoh.

About the Author:

Shakir Rashaan currently lives in suburban Atlanta with his wife and two children. Rashaan's catalog includes the series Chronicles of the Nubian Underworld and the upcoming Kink, P.I., and current projects being developed under the pen name Curtis Alexander Hamilton. Other credits include several anthologies, including the bestselling Zane Presents Z-Rated: Chocolate Flava 3. You can see more of Rashaan at ShakirRashaan.com.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ShakirRashaanErotica

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Alex said...

Very informative blog post. Great choice with Shakir Rashaan. Can't wait to read more of his books.

Shakir Rashaan said...

I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts, Alex..

My thanks to Fang-tastic Books for hosting on my blog tour! :D

bn100 said...

Sounds interesting