Next up in our ‘meet the speakers’ series it’s Kayla Lords! Kayla is a freelance writer, sex blogger, podcaster, and kinky woman living and loving the Florida life. Her site, kaylalords.com, is where she overshares about the kinky fuckery she tries and the noise in her head. She also hosts Masturbation Monday, a weekly blogging meme to encourage writers and bloggers to share their sexy stories and entice readers to touch themselves as often as possible.
Kayla is half of the Loving BDSM podcast and community which she produces and hosts with her long-time kinky partner and Daddy Dom, John Brownstone. Together they talk about the less sexy but extremely important part of BDSM and D/s relationships – communication, trust, honesty, and making a relationship work in both good and bad times.
Kayla Lords is passionate about helping other writers and bloggers get better at earning the money they deserve to be paid and building a loyal audience. She’s also a mom to two boys and one dog.
What inspired you to start working in your field?
Starting a sex blog in 2012 was inspired by a few things – a complete lack of orgasms in my life up to that point (I was 32!), a guy who dumped me because I couldn’t get off (oh, the irony), and an understanding that writing was how I processed my thoughts and feelings. I’d learned that last one the year before when I went through a divorce and blogged my way through it. During that time I’d come across a few sex blogs and realized people really wrote about this stuff while I could barely say the word “sex” or “climax” without whispering and looking around to make sure no one heard me.
Some things are truly meant to be. Starting a little blog about masturbation and orgasms lead me to explore kink and BDSM (an addiction to the NSFW side of Tumblr didn’t hurt, either). It was a whole new world to explore, and while I was learning, I wrote about it. I quickly found that the blog posts that got the most attention were the ones where I gave advice or shared what I’d learned for a broader audience – instead of navel-gazing. That was the beginning of everything…in 2014 I became a full-time freelance writer in the vanilla world (anything nonsexual counts as “vanilla” to me) but it was another full year before I believed I could be a sex and BDSM writer and educator. Without my sex blog about masturbation and orgasms, I would never have known it was possible.
If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring sex bloggers/podcasters/writers/erotic creative types, what would it be?
If you’re forcing me to pick just one, it’s that you have to show up. Consistently. And do the work of creating content. Spending time on social media, hanging out, might be gratifying but it builds a temporary platform in someone else’s sandbox. Don’t get me wrong – social media has it’s place, and I love being in that space (when it’s a positive experience). But the real work of blogging, podcasting, writing, and creating something is to go to your own space on some consistent schedule and put in the work of creating your thing. There is no such thing as overnight success. There is no mysterious person who offers you a lot of money to work for them because you’re fun or snarky on Twitter. Building an audience or a career or a platform (or all of that) only happens by showing up to your space and doing the work of making your thing – blog posts, audio files, videos, graphics, it doesn’t matter what it is. You won’t be as good as you want to be when you start. You won’t have anyone paying attention to you in the beginning. And you won’t make a dime at first.
But none of those things will ever happen if you don’t spend your time in the trenches making your art. You don’t have to do it every day – although it doesn’t hurt – but you have to commit to your platform and your art and decide to put in the blood, sweat, tears, curse words, typos, and work. And for the person who thinks they’re not “good enough” or might not be the right person to make your art or that you shouldn’t because other people talk about your topic, a few words. One, we all feel that way in the beginning – and some of us keep feeling that way long after we’ve attained any amount of “success.” Two, if you don’t do it, no one else will and no will beg you to do it, either. And three, other people might talk about the same topic or write reviews or do something similar to your art, but no one has your voice or your experience. And we need your voice, even if we don’t always agree with each other. No one ever asks people if they’ll please blog about sex. This is me not just asking but begging – please go create your stuff, whatever it is.
The way we talk about sex and relationships has changed a lot over the last decade – what changes do you hope to see in the next 10 years?
Most of us want the same thing – to not be harassed for talking about sex or kink, to be able to use the same platforms, advertising options, and tools that creatives who don’t talk about sex can use, and to not be censored out of misplaced fears, concerns, and hypocrisies. So put me down as a vote for hoping those things change in the next ten years. But as someone who lives a kink lifestyle that many people keep hidden for fear of lost jobs, families, custody of children, and more, in ten years I hope the real or perceived repercussions change. I hope that one day BDSM will be less stigmatized and, even if not more understood, at least more widely accepted as a genuine expression of love, relationships, and a lifestyle.
As a mom to two boys, my other hope is that in the next decade we see a continued shift in how we discuss sex, consent, desire, gender, and the entire spectrum of human sexuality. I want to live in a world where children have access to good sex education that actually helps them understand their bodies, realize we’re all different and unique, and that sex isn’t one thing to be done in one way with one type of partner. I also want them to have the tools to make good decisions, stay safe, and take care of themselves and their partner (in whatever way that means for them). I recognize that most of that has to come from parents who aren’t afraid to talk about sex – which is how I’m using my hard-won knowledge from the past several years. But we also have to continue to advocate for fact-based sex education in schools that are also open and inclusive for everyone on the spectrum of sexuality. If more bloggers, podcasters, and other creative people can keep talking about sex and refusing to stay in the dark, behind closed doors, while speaking in hushed tones maybe we can bring about more of a cultural shift – on both sides of the Atlantic.
Kayla’s Eroticon talks
How to make money from your blog without losing your soul or your audience
This session will discuss real ways I’ve made money through my personal blog over the years with a realistic view that it’s not quick, it’s not easy, and it requires effort but it is definitely doable. Attendees will walk away with things they can do immediately (once they get back to their blog) and things to keep in mind as they move forward. Rule number one – don’t fuck over your audience. Rule number two – show up. Rule number three – have a plan.
A panel discussion with multiple podcasters who will discuss why we podcast, what we talk about, how we plan episodes, what methods we use, and how it helps our blog/business/goals.