Written by design

Another strand to Bodice Beautiful is writing and journalism. Paul Whiteside has extensive experience as a senior technical author, UK news reporter, publications officer and communications officer. Starting in 2013 he has also published a series of e-book novels available via www.amazon.co.uk

In the spirit of keeping a busy life simple and organised, one man, one business, there is just this one site for information, so please Contact us to check out my freelance writing services, and for any questions about my books. November 2014, published titles are:

  • Agent Orange
  • China Poppy (teen)
  • Diamond Lady
  • The Blue House
  • The Maiko and the Bullet Train
  • The Virgo Dolls
  • White Poppy.
Several of these include a lot about women's fashion.

Agent Orange – contemporary general fiction

Death changes everything, for it is the beginning of the greatest change of all. Agent Orange is a powerful poignant read with controversial themes: the story of part-Vietnamese mother, Thanh, 32 years, and her adopted hydrocephalic daughter, Trinh, 14 years, because of Agent Orange after the Vietnam War. Dreamer Jason (J), 38 years, has sexual thoughts for Thanh, has watched her regularly on his commuter train. This oriental beauty: rich mahogany hair, long blunt fringe above large almond eyes.

Thrown together following the London Tube bombing in 2005, J pursues love with Thanh while trying to untangle himself from his live-in girlfriend, the glamorous and fantastical Lauren P, 41 years. Finally, Thanh’s demons laid to rest, she tells J to make it up with Lauren P, confronts her true self and makes her final journey for retribution back in Vietnam.

Diamond Lady – general fiction/history/fantasy

Are you ready for a journey? I'm going to introduce you to three people – at various times they have been each other's friends. Now they need you, for you are their way forward: you will take them on to the end, and there you will decide. This is a true story, as much as anything is ever true. We met in a university library: me the writer researching for a book, and she Rukhsana this warm, female presence. We seemed to know each other, with a growing common understanding of ancient times and distant events. Was it possible that we had actually met somewhere before – another place, another time, another life?

In previous lives - I believed - she had developed many varied talents, joy, peace and balance, the ability to talk with angels, the memories flooding through. A friendship without conditions – was that possible? None of the characters is real, but they may have been in a past life somewhere – who knows? She, blonde Fiona (40+ years), ice blue eyes, tall, dumb blonde – born with a speech defect, she cries inside; She, Tamsin, brunette, exotic-erotic (in her 30s), part Iranian – part Asian, otherwise British all through – she who has also been Roxanne; He, the man in the middle (mid-30s), tall, piercing grey-green eyes.

Starting winter 2005 - one year centered on a large Gothic Revival house above the Kent coast sea, with its Pre-Raphaelite essence and spirit of Art Nouveau - this novel dips in and out of time, through different cultures, dancing, love and lust (and modern terrorist war). It considers the truly, madly deeply bit of love between rivals, like an illness that can't be shaken off. We don't always know the effect we have, the offence we cause, or the hurt we produce. When we are happy we can forget that we're running through clouds.

The Blue House – contemporary general fiction        

So thoroughly will I twist this miserable tree that it will never put forth its evil-smelling buds. Baudelaire. Blue? What is blue? Blue is cold, calming, refreshing. Blue is the colour of sadness. Blue is the colour of the Blue House at Warren Beach.

It had begun with something very vague: ‘Love with abandon,’ Ryan’s stunning blonde live-in girlfriend Jaynie (Jay) tells him, ‘all you have to do is enjoy.’ Then gallery artist Ryan meets another woman, tall Marianne, who is to change his life for ever. Written in two parts The Blue House is a dark and chilling gothic love story of emotional intensity. Its essence is of the obsessional and sometimes irrational search for eternal sexual happiness and love. The report of an incident of cruelty to a child is a regular feature of broadcast and printed news. When all your memories are wrapped in barbed wire, how do you cope?

Ryan takes his chance with the greatest taboo, but Marianne’s past is dark and deep. As he delves deeper, goes further back into the history, he realises exactly what he is up against, and that to have Marianne he must give up life with his precious Jay. Then there is the protective telephone girl Angel, and finally, Marianne's doppelganger rival Gayle. No longer sure of the truth or why he is being deceived, Ryan encounters these three other women who are taking over his life.

Intricately bound up in one woman’s Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD) this novel is based on this as a means of coping with the most savage trauma, pain and loss. However, things are never simple at the Blue House and Ryan is left to face deep demons of his own.

The Maiko and the Bullet Train – general contemporary fiction

Don’t be fooled by the face I wear. For I wear a mask, a thousand masks, masks that I’m afraid to take off, and none of them is me. Heavily erotic and thrilling in parts, this love story is based around the erotic imagery of the trainee geisha, the polished slender aerodynamic stainless-steel lipstick tube, and the Japanese Shinkansen or high speed Bullet Train.

You can’t really know what you want until you’ve first got it wrong. The edge of sexual danger gives the erotic game excitement, but you can’t stand still. The tragedy of multiple loves - lust stronger than love - three women in love with one man: Karen (Shinobu), his university cleaner Tanya Candice, and an old flame Nicole, give mature student Jon more than he bargains for. However, get it really wrong and there’s everything to lose.

Karen listens to young Japanese girls singing: don’t they know what they do? She watches tight silhouettes drawn into the night, insatiable appetites for sex, thinking of her father, and the tickled, giggling child. ‘You disgust me,’ she remembers saying. ‘How can you say you “love” me now?’ He talked about her hidden little “places,” put his hands up her top. Blonde Tanya’s husband – violent, sad, as her own parents were violent and sad: he rapes her, abuses her and she grows to hate the once loved father of her precious child. She hits out at her Maria, pulls her hair. ‘You bitch,’ she says, ‘I’ve sacrificed all my love for you. Now what do you give me?’

Jon sits on his own speeding train, thinks back over his long-term friendship with Karen and sex with Tanya Candice. Karen has given him a porcelain doll. ‘She’s authentic, from Japan. She is a maiko, trainee geisha, dancing girl. Finding one’s own way means realising what is essential in one’s life. Karen realises her mistake. She has worn the various masks of childhood, keeping her own screaming pain hidden within. Even the brightest burning candle can be blown out by the wind! She returns to search for Jon. The bullet train picking up speed, exploding into the darkness, he melts into the maiko’s bliss.

The Virgo Dolls – erotic romantic fantasy - also available as paperback (print on demand)

Fantasies are very private experiences, but when we so desire we all have the potential within us to do odd, or socially unacceptable, things. The Virgo Dolls is a novel about 10 +1 Virgo women, the Dolls, in various stages of having been almost killed for, by, or because of love. It’s their opportunity to re-find their lives together in a just-too-good-to-miss-opportunity with the Doll Collector and the Chaperone, (and unknown to most of them, with advanced humanoid robots), in a Cornish paradise by the sea.

So we meet the Virgo Dolls: Redhead Doll Paolina (33); African Doll Kenisha (27); Japanese Doll Aiko (36); Left-Handed Model Doll Caitriona (30); Blonde Doll Udnie (24); Silent Doll Kiki-Lola (41); Tart Doll Shanika (42); Virgin Doll Natasha (29); S&M Doll Lucinda (44); Lesbian Doll Katchina (22); Virgo Extra Doll Elaine (29).

What is there better than to be really loved? Love, perhaps the most exciting and most terrible thing, how do you know when you’ve found it? What about those who mistake lust for love? Can love ever be full possession? What love is ever totally fulfilled? What if that love comes from a hot robotic doll? What if a robot develops a sense of self, a need for soul, and a suicidal tendency to end it all?

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. To be loved unequivocally you have to be prepared to give it back. You think you know who you are, only to find out you’re actually someone else. Behind her mask who is ever who she seems? You cannot become anybody else but yourself.

White Poppy (18+ adult) - historical fiction/adventure - also available in paperback (as print in demand); China Poppy (teenage)

At heart a love story: Victorian Opium Wars between Britain and Imperial China, epic clash between educated British-Sicilian pirate Charles Paul Sansovino (28 years) and exquisite Chinese boat-girl/prostitute Yin Hsueh-yen (17 years). Starting in Canton at the edge of the South China Sea, it is a Chinese puzzle of exquisite simplicity set within a complex whole, about two strangers who should fall in love but can’t (then do).

This retrospective Journal written by Charles tells of forbidden love that transcends all pain, against manipulated money and power, imprisonment, torture and potential death. Escape across China disguised as a missionary priest and his ‘boy for Shanghai, aiming for a merchant ship to Calcutta and England.

Tropical storm survived, from London they travel down to Birchington in Kent. He calls her Eliza, and she learns English and talks about the cruel details of her life: who scarred her face, broke her fingers, cut off her little finger-tip; her tattoo of a snake swallowing its own tail, and why the opium poppy almost destroyed her life.

Baptism and marriage – new life by the sea: four girls who will not see what they do not have to see. But Eliza withdraws into herself, sunshine gone. ‘I have something to tell you, something I can no longer hide. I betrayed you Charles,’ she pauses, dabs the corner of her eye, ‘for the sake of my Chinese son, I betrayed you.’ She tells him of her part in the great sisterhood – She-Tigers of Canton, and he records the details of her tragic tale. But life can be cruel, and birth can bring death of loved ones, and no poppy lasts for ever.