Don't Hold My Head Down
By Lucy-Anne Holmes
Bridget Jones meets Erin Brockovich and Elizabeth Gilbert – wearing a strap on, at a sex party
Publication date: February 2019Buy
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What is the book about?
Don’t Hold My Head Down is a memoir about sex. It starts with me having a disappointing and drunken wank to internet porn and ends with me having three day long orgasms and taking on the most powerful newspaper in the country. Basically it’s one valiant idiots journey into self-love and empowerment through sex. Bridget Jones meets Erin Brockovich and Elizabeth Gilbert – wearing a strap on, at a sex party.
The bare bones of the story
I have an epiphany.
I’m in my mid thirties and I don’t think I’ve skimmed the top of how amazing sex can be – what have I been doing with my time?!
I make a list.
I want to experience slow sex, different types of orgasm, work out what to do with a penis, be sexual with other women, try some BDSM, go to a sex party, make porn.
I attempt to do the things on the list. Um…would you er, like to try um, you know..with me? GAHHHHH!
I am beset by obstacles and disasters. I hate my body, I hate myself, I am incapable of asking for what I want, I use alcohol for courage, it takes me ages to find someone to practice with, he dumps me after the worst handjob in the world, etc etc etc.
Amazing things happen. I get to know myself, get to quite like myself, discover that I, Lucy-Anne Holmes, person with a pussy am a pleasure machine! I meet some incredible people and it might sound a bit over the top but my life starts to feel like a wonderful, no, magical adventure. I am happier, calmer, and just generally less afraid of everything.
Why am I writing it?
Yes, why am I, Lucy-Anne Holmes, nice convent girl, founder of a campaign to stop pictures of topless women in the paper, writing an explicit memoir. Well, I told some of these anecdotes when I was travelling around the country campaigning and the response was generally a huddle of people afterwards who wanted to talk to me and the word I heard most was inspiring. They would tell me how refreshing it was to hear someone talk so frankly about sex and porn, or ask me how I had managed to learn to actually love my body. If telling this story might inspire just one young woman that she doesn’t have to compare herself to images she sees in magazines, or take part in sex that she feels uncomfortable with or if it inspires her to start a petition and challenge something that makes her feel small. Well, if my story could do that, then I feel it is a story worth telling. Exploring my sexuality has been the most incredible thing I have ever done, I found gold, and now I want to share the treasure.
Why am I crowd funding?
I’ve been lucky enough to have had 4 novels published via the traditional publishing route, but with each book, big compromises had to be made. I had no say on the titles or covers and was told I wasn’t allowed to write about certain subjects. I felt that Don’t Hold My Head Down was a book that I didn’t want to compromise too much on. A watered-down book about female sexuality seemed a bit pointless and I didn’t want cupcakes on covers or a title like ‘Lost Without Him.’ Unbound got this, and most of all they got the book. I am excited to be with them.
Lucy-Anne Holmes is a writer and campaigner. Her last novel Just a Girl Standing In Front of a Boy won the Romantic Novelists Association 'Rom Com of the Year 2015' and she founded the successful No More Page 3 campaign.
She lives in Hertfordshire with her partner and young son.
Chapter 4: Gasping Birds
Now I had thought that there was some magic there….but then this conversation happened.
On the street. Approx 11pm.
Student night. Think Shaun of the Dead, but with drunk teenagers in high shoes lolloping past us.
Me: Do you want to come back to mine?
Him: Er…hmmm…hmmm…I think I should probably stay at mine tonight.
Me: Are you ok?
Me: Quick move over here, that girl looks like she’s going to be…
Me: So, tell me. What’s up?
(a painful pause)
(this pause is really starting to hurt… owwwwww…badly)
Him: I’m just having a few doubts, that’s all.
Him: A bit of a wobble.
Me: Um…but well.. us learning tantric sex together, it can’t really happen if one of us doesn’t want to….Can it?
So that was that then.
But it was fine.
In fact it was better than fine. I was the leader of the sexual revolution after all. It was another growth opportunity. I simply smiled and wished him well in a warm and ever so slightly nonchalant manner.
Hmmmmmmm, that’s not quite what happened, is it Lucy?
Well, no, not exactly.. but one day, one day…
So what really happened?
I cried on the street. Then I met some friends. Got drunk. Bought a cheeseburger from a chip van and wailed ‘I feel such a plum’ as I ate it on a step.
- 17th May 2019 A little update about Don't Hold My Head Down
Just zooming in with a little update about Don’t Hold My Head Down.
- Very excitingly I was asked to write quite a long feature for a Guardian Weekend , Sex and Intimacy, supplement. It should be in tomorrow’s edition along with a um VERY ORANGE photoshoot of me.
Please do keep an eye out for it and send it some love!
28th February 2019 Come and see me in March!
- Also, I’m going to be doing a few talkies over…
I hope you are well.
I have loved launching Don't Hold My Head Down into the world. Particularly being a 'Number 1 best seller in sex' on Amazon, I may pop that on a business card. And MP Hannah Bardell telling everyone present to put it on their reading list during the recent debate on Sex and Relationship eductation in the House of Commons.
I have got quite a lot of talkies…7th February 2019 PUBLICATION DAY!!!
It is publication day for Don't Hold My Head Down and I am buzzing and bursting with gratitude.
THE BIGGEST THANK YOU to you for supporting this project.
Yesterday I went on Woman's Hour and was interviewed about it by Jenny Murray. The response since has been wonderful. I lept from somewhere in the region of 130,000 in the Amazon chart to 89th out of the whole Amazon chart yesterday…25th September 2018 A little proposition for you...
Hello to you 444 dear kind wonderful people who have bought the first copies of my book,
The book is (SO NEARLY) FINISHED! Proof copies are being printed right now and Don’t Hold My Head Down will be out in the world and landing on your doormat in early February. It is all very exciting.
Aaaaand I have a little proposition for you all. A mission, should you choose to accept it…17th August 2017 Good news!
Hello wonderful people!
I just wanted to stop by and update you on the book.
I have completed an early first draft! Whoop!
High five. I thank you.
I call it an early first draft as it is still a bit rubbish, but it’s a starting point on which to build. I haven’t sent it to Unbound just yet, it is currently with some buddies I trust and admire who will tell me where it is particularly crap…14th June 2017 Wahooooo!!!
Hello! Hello! Hello! *high kick, wiggle
You may have spotted I'm rather jolly this morning!!
Well...that is because...
WE DID IT!! WE MADE 100%! THIS BOOK IS GOING TO HAPPEN!!
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU SO SO SOOO MUCH for pledging, for sharing and for believing in me and the project.
Now, I just have to finish the manuscript and make it really good so you are proud to have your…18th May 2017 69%
Good afternoon wonderful people!
How are you diddling? I do hope well.
I am thrilled to say that I am 69% funded! Yes, yes, I know what you are thinking but that isn’t the only reason why this is exciting….it is exciting because the good people at Unbound tell me that no one has got to 70% and not made it. We are so close!
Also, rather wonderfully, I was interviewed about the project by industry…30th April 2017 An update about my sex book
Hello kind people who have supported my sex book!
First of all, I am very sorry it has taken me TWO YEARS to get in touch. But you see they were a very busy two years, with an awful lot going on, so I had to put 'crowdfunding my sex book' on the back burner for a wee while. There were my two very poorly parents (thankfully doing really well now) there was a birth (cor blimey, that was a bit full…9th April 2015 Hello Shed People!
Ooo I'm a bit excited to be writing in my Shed!
Apologies for it taking me so long to get acquainted with this space and to pop up and say a massive and really heartfelt thank you to you all for supporting this project.
In excuse of my terrible tardiness, things have been a bit busy of late. Page 3 went, then reappeared, but now thankfully seems to be really properly gone. Boom! I wrote a little…
These people are helping to fund Don't Hold My Head Down.
Harriet st Leger
Harriet st Leger