I met Mrs. Darling at BDSM Writers Con last year, where I was dazzled by her retro style and am BEYOND thrilled to have her as my guest today with her new book! Read on to discover how it all came together for her!
Three years ago, I awoke in the middle of the night and felt like crawling out of my skin. It was the evening after a BDSM lifestyle event, not much different than any I have attended over the years. But something I was asked that evening, was like a splinter stuck in my brain keeping me from peace. At some point during the easygoing conversations amongst friends and strangers, a question came to my Dominant and I. It was a question that kept coming up over and over again.
People wanted to know about our transition from a vanilla egalitarian marriage, to the one we lived in at the time. We lived 24/7 TPE D/s (which means full time, all day, in and out of the bedroom, Dominance and submission). Our new marriage was so inherently different than our “old” one.
“How did it all start?” I was asked over and over again.
We gave a simple explanation as always: we were unhappy in our non-kink relationship. One of us brought the idea of BDSM up, and together we began researching and educating ourselves, practicing power exchange in the bedroom first, etc. Every time we told the story my husband (referenced in my non-fiction writing as Mister or MR), clasped my hand tight to slow my rising pulse and comforted me in the invisible way only those closely connected can communicate.
This story, the real and rich deep down story, circled around the worst time in my life. Every time it came up I walked down a path filled with sorrow and tears, all while smiling and speaking with a forced politeness. I looked forward to the drive home so I could sit in silence and let the tears fall, feeling alone and ashamed and afraid of anybody learning the heartbreaking path that was actually “How did it all start?”
It started as catharsis.
So in moonlight after another evening of mournful recollection, with a silent house asleep around me, I pulled out my laptop, turned on some tunes and started writing. I wrote it out; wrote it all. The bad. The worse. His mistakes. Mine as well. I wrote of struggling to see the silver lining. I wrote out my anger in knowing for so long that I wanted BDSM and submission to be a part of my life, but feeling like I was a damaged person for wanting it. I wrote of my husband’s struggle in his path as a Dominant. I wrote about fucking, I wrote about fucking up, I wrote about fucking around. I wrote about our developing SM play.
I wrote for a year. In the middle of the night, in the early morning over coffee with my children’s cartoons playing in the background and during their nap time. Some of my hobbies went on the shelf, to make room for writing time. It consumed me.
I wanted to cut this story out of my system. I wanted control back of our beginning. I wanted to confront my emotions head on for the first time since living the experience.
See, the truest story about “How did it all start?” for us in Dominance and submission is the basic story of the phoenix. The Mister and I, the “old us,” had crashed and burned. We were entirely broken, had died emotionally, and had no other choice but to help first ourselves and then each other rise from the ashes. It was so… incredibly… painful.
Writing it out freed me from the pain. Submission though, submission is what allowed me to fly again. When I became a submissive I began journaling my path. I wrote my private journal and shared it online, in a public forum and quickly fell in love with the kindness, support and camaraderie I received from the BDSM community. I waded through submission and there were others who had walked similar paths, and encouraged me along the way. I always have simply written from my heart.
I almost exclusively wrote non-fiction about our experience in kink, about our 1950s household, about our bedroom affairs. I’m not one to craft a character or storyline; any attempt comes up flat. People seem drawn to my authenticity. One of my friends once wrote in comment to a very personal journal, “You’ve got this wonderful ability to suck the reader in, put them in your shoes, and then drop them on the other side feeling awed to have gotten a glimpse.” All of a sudden it clicked for me.
I am an emotional exhibitionist.
It manifests itself by way of creative non-fiction.
Darling Discovered: A True Story of Submission is an encapsulation of the two.
This book that I wrote over the course of three years gave me exactly what I needed. It is a way for me to both expose my weakness to the world, ensuring that it can never jump up on me again, but also give me power over the story told. While writing Darling Discovered, I probably shed as many tears telling the story as I did living it. I laughed, I lost sleep over it, I re-lived the tale. Creative non-fiction, which presents real, accurate information in a fictional literary style, gave me both the structure I needed to once and for all answer, “How did this all start?” and the literary freedom to expose my soul to the reader.
The happenings happened, sure.
But when you can accurately articulate things like self consciousness. Ecstasy. Rage. Remorse. Anticipation. And not just articulate the guess of those raw emotions but write from actually living the situation described, well, it lends the story an authenticity that I personally find hard to duplicate. In the end it leaves the reader as the voyeur in this true story of starting submission. Even for those not interested in kink or BDSM, this is a tale of self-acceptance, self-awareness and of learning to love the imperfect version of ourselves.
I am grateful for that night years ago when I was asked, “So, how did you go from there to here?” It gave me the courage to answer it openly and honestly, once and for all.
I am finally free.
Darling Discovered: A True Story of Submission won in the non-fiction category at 2015 BDSM Writer’s Con and was published June 2016. It is available in print and all ebook formats at major retailers. DarlingDiscovered.com for more information.
A special thank you to F. Leonora Solomon for hosting this guest post onto her lovely website, fdotleonora.com.
Mrs. Darling is the lady of a Modern Day 1950’s M/s Household. She is a regular contributor for SubmissiveGuide.com and her work can be seen elsewhere online.