The Sultana -or slut- Roxolana, and some back story on my upcoming book

You can’t imagine -well, maybe some of you can- how excited I am about the impending publication of my book, How High Should I Jump? The Satirical Guide to Pleasing Today’s Woman, by Seaburn Books in New York City, release date still unknown.

It’s been my life’s work, this book, something that began to take shape as an idea initially back 20-something years ago, that a manual for men suffering from the afflictions and infections following a woman’s betrayal was something then unavailable on the market, and for the emotionally-hellacious experiences that I struggled through, of great necessity to guys like me, yet no modern writer really had addressed it, this near-taboo subject which has plagued society since our inception, betrayal, infidelity and the loss of trust between 2 -or more- people.

Not that I hold all or even any of the answers or solutions or even accept the argument that there are ‘solutions’ to the Human Relationship, no, I only offer my own discoveries, gleaned from years studying the explanadums and beseechments of so many astounding writers of previous eras, the only reliable voices I could turn to with trust. I’ve absorbed a great many of these voices, heard their pleas and ministrations and I’ve listened and acknowledged the problems that have consistently come up whenever there is betrayal, the most destructive act next to outright murder (which is often the fruit of betrayal, of course), and I’ve long felt I would one day respond with my own response, modest of course compared to my betters but I knew I would offer it confidently nonetheless, if only as a guidepost back to those voices with greater repute -and firepower- than thou.

The actual first manuscript appeared sometime in 2003, and then the Whittling Process began, fattening the manuscript first with every possible thought related to each particular thought, then its reduction to the bare essence, an intuitive editor within admonishing me whenever I got unnecessarily wordy, windy or pithy. As I moved from those initial 2003 scribblings, the book took different forms, including a section of photographed expressions I’ve sadly been unable to justify forcing into publication (perhaps a second edition of the book may warrant its cost, a very funny section of facial expressions I personally just love). Once I felt it complete, I then undertook to get it published, yet from 2006 until…well, for several years I peppered both publishers large and small and literary agencies of every description, looking for someone bold enough to say, “Now there’s something that, despite its unusualness, must be published.”

I had almost given up the process, I will admit, when a chance query to a New Zealand agent I’d read about changed everything.

Of course I’d carved out a nice query letter, the tool of the would-be author’s trade, his calling card to agents and publishers, yet while I knew it was polished and I did receive a few favorable replies, “Nice query but not for me,” I got no solid bites, and the years began to pile one on the other with no hits whatsoever. Yet, damn! I have always known this was a great book, not because of me but for what it is, how it came together and what it’s made from. It’s truthfully a work far beyond me and more a result of my dedication to a particular school or rather, schools of thought, my belief and faith in, a miner digging deeply into what he just knows will eventually yield rich rewards yet appears to be a dead end to nowhere as he goes, critics ringing mockery in his ear.

No, I was doing what I could to keep my spirits in there when I received a reply from my zillionth query, “Yes, I’m very interested and I’d like to see a proposal.” Huh, wha…? Well, hell yes! And within minutes, I’d whisked off a full proposal, replete with press clippings and comparisons to other recent works, synopsis, market plan, no stone left unturned for Milt Quibner, believe me, and wait, what’s this?

“This is one of the best proposals I’ve seen,” came her reply, “I’d like to offer you a contract.” Yes, yes, and yes again, but wait, there’s more?

“This is a difficult work, of course, and it may take some time to find the right publisher, but I believe in your work and I will see it published!”

Hello, and thank you, Emerantia; my wife, P; Gaia and Ouranos!

I did some research, found she’s reputable and established, thought to myself, ‘Hell, what have I got to lose? This is my only real hit’, so away we go, I sign the contract with the highest spirits in March of 2011…

…And it’s October 2011 before I finally get an email, “We’re now ready to submit your work.”

Geez, I’m anxiously spinning my wheels, yet what can I do but keep the faith and know that eventually my time will come, she’ll find the right people and…

…And on Memorial Day of this year, I get an email, “I think I’ve found you a publisher, and in New York City, too!” Oh, hell yes! And since then, it has been a magical -if sloooooooowwwww– process, slow in that I wanna get goin’ right fucking now, I gotta spread the word, get people engaged, toss about some free books and get the mumble mumbling, there’s a new perspective in town, people, Milt Quibner’s here, gonna praise women and scold the wimps, it’s shape up time, pansies, and it’s time we did a helluva lot more for women…among my many themes!

At any rate, some time in the next few weeks my book will be released, my long awaited, much maligned and ignored ‘Magnum Opus’, as my dear friend James Katsaros has kindly called it. It was such a joy to compose, I laughed hard so many times while it poured from me, yet I respect the wisdom I felt passing along from the recesses of my understanding and knew that here, in this book humorously referred to as a ‘satire’, was something of deep value, chanelling through me and coming from a place a long time ago.

Long ago I vowed to see it in print, and with that day fast approaching, the sense of joy and pride I feel…well, I’m just excited to launch it as soon as I can. Long overdue, and especially sweet considering my personal situation, which I will undoubtedly share with you in the coming weeks, but not now. No, now is a time to breathe deep the dry, clean, cool fall air, taste the ripening fruits and let the last few rays of sun warm the face, for soon, we’ll be indoors, again, and I’ll be consumed with getting the word out.

But no, not yet, not now…

~
This week’s History’s Most Outrageous and Powerful Women takes a look at one of our most ambitious -and successful- women, the Sultana Roxolana.

Much has been made of this 16th Century woman’s meteoric rise to the top, from slave girl to wife of Suleiman the Sultan in less than 5 years. As is my practice, I’ll forgo all the mundane details and get straight to what I find interesting in this woman. We know that she was born and raised in the Ukraine and was probably taken as a slave after one of the Ottoman invasions, returning to Alexandria, today’s Istanbul, where she became, because of her beauty, a concubine in the Sultan’s harem.

Now, a word about the harem: we tend to think of them as dens of iniquity where young women were lavishly spoiled while being trained in the sensual arts, and while some of that may be true, for most, life in a harem was horribly boring. Yes there was all forms of education given including sexual training but for vast stretches of the day, you sat on your ass and did nothing but wait for the chance that the Sultan might prefer you for his pleasure that evening. Might, because he had, of course, his choice of over 300 women to pick from. Roxolana apparently sized up her chances and decided she wasn’t about to become a mere anonymous breeder; she decided to fuck her way to the top and thus did, rising quickly by her wit and sexual abilities and soon becoming the Sultan’s favorite, who he would take her with him when he traveled, generally upturning the order of how things ought to be done and creating quite a scandal. This Sultan’s reign, by the way, is regarded as the high point of Islamic conquest, history, culture, spirituality, religious tolerance, wealth and prosperity. His empire at that time was vast, his influence profound, so to have a slave girl bending his ear with her story-telling and jests and winning so much favor with him was remarkable to everyone, save Roxolana.

I dig her, I like her style, for she was beautiful, outrageous and ambitious and used her female power to get what she wanted, and that was, to become a wife of the Sultan, an unheard of idea for a slave but, because of the favor she enjoyed with him, along with bearing him six sons, she so worked her craft that soon a law was written allowing the union and she became his wife. We tend to remember how she then effectively eliminated her chief rival, Mahidevran or Gulfem, after first getting her ass kicked in a fist-fight and then getting her rival banished and soon, murdered, and forget some of the more interesting tidbits recorded of her, including her use of magic in order to sway Suleiman the Sultan, and her amazing beauty. It is this aspect of her that, more than any, she used to influence the Sultan, unusual in that the Sultan had a lifelong steady diet of one beauty after the next, all capable of performing wonderfully-intense sexual relief, yet he chose Roxolana above so many others and defended his choice against all rivals and hearsay. She must have been truly amazing, for he supposedly so enjoyed watching her stand naked at sunset in her diaphanous gowns, with the light falling behind her seductively as she danced and teased him, that afterward he would grant her any wish.

It is said that she could prolong a man’s orgasm indefinitely by keeping him at the edge of climax until he almost passed out from delight. She became noted for her use of feathers and light-touch objects on the Sultan, a sensuous approach which soon became the stuff of legend. She was felt to have so much influence over Suleiman that she was thought to be the real ruler of the Ottoman Empire, until her death after 8 years of marriage. She did much for the suffrage of women, building hospitals and establishing schools for women which were still unheard of in those days. She gave not a shit for the opinions of anyone other than the Sultan, and he was deeply grieved when she died, never taking another concubine to his bed and leaving very passionate poetry about her in his diaries, leaving this passage for us where he refers to her as “…the throne of my lonely niche, my wealth, my love, my moonlight…”

Ruthless, ambitious, unapologetic, a sexual dynamo who could have intercourse indefinitely, Roxolana, my friends, ruled!
~

There’s been an interesting discussion going on over on the Replies/Comments of last week’s blog, between Tim O. and Myron the Moron. Quite engaging, a little vulgar but I don’t mind; in fact, I want people to feel free to be as they are without pretensions and simply write your mind and heart no matter what that is. In my view, there is nothing that people do that isn’t natural to people. Nothing. The word ‘perversion’ is a perversion of the truth, for nothing we do, feel or say is perverse.

If you’d rather comment or question something I’ve said or for any other reason but you don’t feel like posting publicly, please drop me an email: r.miltonquibner@yahoo.com.

And, yes, the Reds stomped my Giants last night, a game we shoulda took with Cueto falling ill, but all’s good, we got MadBum going tonight so expect a victory, then we move on to Cincinnati and take 2 of 3, understood?

Get outside and enjoy this precious season, and until next week, enjoy it!

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