Novel in progress

I'm writing a novel that uses all of my stripping experiences - the fascinating characters, the bizarre working practices, and the trials and tribulations of an average night at one of London's brashest stripclubs.

Here are a few of my favourite extracts so far..... The first is set in the ladies bathroom, and shows the average conversation between a couple of dancers. I explain how the changes to expenses have affected the lapdancing industry.  The second is based on a two-song set on main stage, and my interactions with a tipper.....

Striponomics explained

Once I had poured the three of us a nice glass of warm white Sauvingnon, Michelle and I both began to get to the task in hand – namely, the application of our Sunshimmer fake tan. To do this, you squeeze a thick blob from the tube onto a mitt and rub it onto your skin. It's best to start with your legs and work your way up, and you have to do it quickly, in sections, or else it will streak. In Michelle's case, she had to pat the mitt onto her skin, as she already had several layers on from her previous efforts. I hummed along to the music a little, and decided to make polite conversation on one of the usual topics – last night, tonight, and the new girls.
“How was last night for you Meesh?”
“Yeah, it was alright I guess. Got a couple of half hours in VIP and some dances. One of them said he was coming in tonight about 11 with some mates, so that'll be a bonus if it happens.”
“Two nights in a row? God, he must love you.”
“I think he loves these babies,” she replied, waggling her tits at me. “He works in the city – got a couple of clients that he wants to spoil for Christmas drinks.”
“Who wouldn't? Is he a spender then?”
“Nobodies a spender this year, fucking cheap asses what with the credit crunch. The expenses seem to have dried up too.”
“There's a reason for that.” I'd spoken to several clients about this. Apparently the British government in their infinite wisdom have decided to change the tax rules on expenses. You used to be able to put all sorts of claims in, as companies could treat visits to lap-dancing clubs as legitimate business expenses. But then, in 2009, the over-zealous champion of equality, Labour's Harriet Harmen, got on her high horse and declared; “Why should you be able to get tax relief for a night out at a lap-dancing club where effectively you are discriminating against women employees in doing so?” At the time, the articles about her comments made me laugh so much that I even tore one out and stuck it on my noticeboard. A few years on though, and the dancing girls of the UK are laughing no more.
They tightened the rules on 'Business Entertainment', citing that they must be of a 'reasonable' kind and scale, and HMRC only allowed 'protective reclaims' – in short, if you put in a bill that's too big for your business size, or falls outside their guidelines, you may need to pay it back. Owch.
The effects on striponomics have been disasterous.
All of a sudden visits by bawdy brokers for 'team bonding exercises' were a big no-no. Basically if you want to see pussy, you have to pay for it yourself. One guy I spoke to moaned that client entertainment could be wholly and exclusively for business purposes – well nothing seals the deal like an evening with Simone, who will take your client and give him such a good time that he will be flattered and sign away – but apparently the tax guys see this as borderline bribery and therefore don't want to encourage it. Don't want to encourage it? I can see their point but don't they see that an entire nationwide industry that brings in lots of revenue and redistributes wealth to any old girl that can look half decent in a pair of fishnets despite her lack of educational qualifications is going to suffer from these changes? Stripping may be bad for equality, and women, and encourage misogyny, and all the rest, but on the smaller scale, it's brilliant. It gives women a job with flexible hours and decent pay and they don't have to go to university for three years or sit through a million rounds of interviews to get a job. Trust me. I did the degree, I even got a 9 to 5 in the city, and I turned into a shadow of my former, stripper self – broke, tired, and fed-up. No wonder that when the company I worked for went down the pan I jumped ship back into the world of lapdancing. I may only have a short shelf-life, but at least I had a life.
Meesh was looking at me quizzically, obviously demanding an explanation.
“It's the tax rules honey. They've changed.”
“Whaddya mean the tax rules have changed. So? Just get an accountant.”
“No, it's not like that. You can't claim 'unreasonable expenses' – so if you have a client who is going to give you a few thousand worth of business, you can't go on a jolly with them and try to claw back a grand's worth of VIP and bar bill.”
“So? Just give the receipts to an accountant.”
“Nah Meesh, it's not that easy either. Basically it means that when a guy comes in here, even if he is taking a really, really important client out, he can't get his VAT back and he probably has to pay for the expenses out of his own pocket.” I felt like a financial guru, but it was all second-hand information that I had gleaned from customer's here and there. After all, if someone says they won't let me put this through anymore, you have to ask why, right? And I'd been hearing warnings from customer's who were worried about changes in the rules for the past year or so.
Michelle snorted in derision. “Sound's shitty to me.”
“That's why guys are only going for half hours or a couple of dance's nowadays. They need to keep their bills small to get them through, or be able to cover it from their own paycheque.”
“That's sooooo fucked up!” A voice screeched from the toilet cubicle behind us.
“Are you still in the bloody toilet?” I asked incredusously. It had been a good ten minute's since Crazy Kandi had first gone in there.
“Yeah, but I've finished now! Ta-da!” Kandi emerged and headed straight to the sink to wash her hands. “That was really, really difficult. The string kept on getting caught round my finger when I tried to hide it. Christ knows how I'm going to get it out later.”
Michelle made a face like she was going to be sick. “That's way too much information. I'm getting out of here. You're fucking disgusting Kandi.”
“I'm only telling it like it is Meesh. Stop being such a prude. We all have fannies.”
“Yeah well I don't spend ten minutes playing with mine in a fucking public toilet. Make sure you wash your hands – I'm not dancing anywhere near your arse tonight, no fucking way.” Michelle grabbed her stuff and walked out of the bathroom, her heels once again stomping loudly across the marble floor.

What happens on main stage

I felt myself gearing up with adrenaline as I sauntered onto the stage. Ferrari gave me a wink as she walked past. "There's a tipper at the front - little Chinese guy."
"Thanks Ferrari - have a good night."
"Yeah, you too honey." She walked off, picking up her previously discarded clothes as she went.
I tried to look beyond the bright spotlights to see the faces waiting expectantly around the stage, scanning for a friendly chinese face amongst the audience. There he was. Short and squat. He sat with a tumbler full of stinky whisky and a stack of tipping money. As the UK doesn't have the equivalent of one dollar bills, tipping can be a problem. Well, you can't throw pound coins at the stage - if they didn't hit a dancer in the eye another would be sure to stumble and slip on them. Most clubs have wised up to this however, and offer customers the opportunity to buy tipping dollars - specially branded money that has a nominal value less than the available five, ten, twenties and fifty's which the Bank of England so kindly produces for us. The Bank of Horny Bitches comes in one pound notes, although naturally the club only gives us girls 50p for each one, after stopping charging the customer an extra 20p for each pound he bought, as it caused too many arguments. When they had originally been introduced, the customer paid £1.20, and the girls got a full pound, but like most things in this place, if it causes complications for the customer and the profit and costs could be taken from the girls instead - well, why not? Standard stripclub operating procedure.
The opening beats of “Raspberry Beret” by Prince were beginning to pump through the club. I sauntered up to the pole, trying to look sexy. I certainly didn't feel sexy. I felt like a fat white whale with dodgy hair. Damn the DJ for not giving me an extra half hour.
The steel felt cold to my touch. I twirled cautiously around it, surrepticously checking it's shiny gold surface. Ferrrari had been a good girl. The pole was clean.
I grabbed it with one manicured hand and walked in a circle, tossing my frizzy hair like a half-naked showpony. Brightly coloured spotlights played across my skin. Giving a little half-smile, I tried to get into the zone for hustling later.
“Think Sexy, Be Sexy” I repeated to myself, silently, like a mantra. “you are a money-magnet. You attract money and money is attracted to you.”
I looked at the guys who were sitting around the stage. Not much money here, really. Apart from me, there wasn't much to look at in the club. Even I was looking like a ropey prospect until I finished getting ready. There was the Chinese man that Ferrari had pointed out, sipping at his whisky as he leaned forward, watching me hungrily. There was another pair of guys sat by the stage too, but one was on his phone and the other was looking over his shoulder at it. Glad to have got your interest, boys. Really making me feel special here.
I needed to get out of this sarcastic, pessimistic mindset and put myself into flirty mood. When you are working as a lapdancer, projection is key. There are lots of silly little tricks one can do, like thinking of sex, remembering sex, or simply imagining – you guessed it - sex, but the best aphrodisiac was money and a few kind words. I focused on the tipper.
He was still staring at me, so I decided to do a few tricks on the pole. I wrapped my right leg around its slim shiny surface and used my bodyweight to push me around in a graceful spin, till I landed on the marble floor. Basic, but it was one I could do with my eyes closed, and it left me kneeling on the floor, right by the tipper.
I winked in his direction as I hitched up my dress and waggled my G-string.
“Where's my tip, sweetie?” I asked. Although the words came out of my mouth, when you're in that position your eyes and body language do most of the speaking for you. He knew what I wanted. Picking the top note from his stack he leant over. I momentarily wondered whether to take it off him or allow him to place it in my G-string. I was just a little too far away for him to reach the elastic without my help, but as I began to shuffle forward, the note fell from his hand, so I quickly picked it up and secured it in my knicker elastic. Idiot. He wasn't too happy about this, and grabbed another from his pile.
2nd try for this one then.
I shuffled a little closer, still on my knees, and the guy shoved the note inside my pants in a frenetic movement, a stray finger trying to fondle my pubic mound as he did so. I jerked back and stood up. Creep. Like I'm going to let him touch my pussy for less than a quid. No fucking way.
The song changed to some Ibizan house, and I used the welcome distraction as an excuse to get out of the way, letting my dress drop to the floor as I walked back to the centre of the stage. It was relatively safe here as I was out of arms reach. I smiled politely at the gropey tipper, and he smiled back. No need to be rude I guess. Can't blame the guy for trying.
Still, now I was in the dubious position of being very, very naked, save for my dental floss and two flapping dollar bills around my privates, as well as feeling very, very exposed. Exposed in the sense that I had no fake tan on, and thus looked half a stone heavier than usual. Even worse, I could see that a big group of guys had just come in, and the ones who were not looking for the bar were looking straight at the stage. Best to get out of their eyeline until I was ready for them to see me. With nowhere else to go, I began to climb up the pole.
Climbing a pole gets easier with practise, and even more easy when you are pissed. Unfortunately, I am not an ex-gymnast, and I'm not only stone cold sober, but have a horrible hangover and a mounting paranoia which will hang over me until I gulp down my first drink of the day. Still, I'd rather all the beady eyes look at my pasty white arse wobbling high over their heads and think that I am doing tricks for their amusement then let them see the truth which is currently a wobbling gut, some unbrushed hair and a scowl across my face as I remember that right now I could be on the sofa watching Eastenders.
I stay up there until my song is finished, before sliding down in a hurry, my thighs squeaking as I do so like fingers across a blackboard, and run backstage, glad it's all over. I've only been gone eight minutes, and my stuff is still there, Stripper Mum keeping guard. It's eight o'clock already, and I still have so much to do, but at least I don't have to go on stage again till midnight. I've got to sort out my barnet, turn my skin from alabaster to molten gold, get the hair of the dog down me, and hustle the first of hopefully so many lapdances that I can open an off-shore account, and I've got four hours to do it all until I'm back on stage again.  

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