Starting Places

For an answer to the question “WTF is this kink stuff all about?” see The Ultimate Guide to Kink, edited by Tristan Taormino. It collects essays on different areas and aspects of kink from some of the sharpest thinkers about and practitioners of kink around.

For “How the heck do I do this kink stuff?” see The New Topping Book and The New Bottoming Book, by Janet Hardy and Dossie Easton. Easton and Hardy are the midwives of the late-1900’s kink revolution. Another book of theirs, The Ethical Slut, is the foundational text of modern polyamory culture.

For “How do I interact with kinky people?” see Playing Well With Others, by Lee Harrington and Mollena Willams-Haas. Follow Lee’s work for the intersections of kink with spirituality and transgender experience, as well as practical ideas for playful, approachable BDSM practice. Follow Mollena for great wisdom on M/s dynamics, BDSM and race, and playing with taboo. is the de facto hub of kinky community on the Internet. It has a group for every imaginable sort of kink which you can join and have discussions with people who share your interests. It’s also a good way to find in-person communities near to you. Use the “Places” feature to find the town nearest you, and it will show you upcoming events and related groups associated with that town. See my ebook How to Find Partners on Fetlife for guidance in using Fetlife productively.


Yes Means Yes, edited by Jaclyn Freidman and Jessica Valenti, and Ask: Building Consent Culture, edited by Kitty Stryker, are two anthologies that offer a deep understanding of the principle of consent


Conquer Me, by Kacie Cunningham, is written from the perspective of a woman submitting to a man, but the counsel it has to offer is valuable for anyone interested in long term lifestyle submission.

Slavecraft, by Guy Baldwin and a grateful slave, is a classic from a gay male, strict M/s perspective.

Feminism and Power Exchange

Midori is one of the great teachers of kink in general, and of feminine power in particular. Her book Wild Side Sex is another excellent entry point into kink, and her classes are not to be missed.

The S&M Feminist, by Clarisse Thorn, is a collection of the author’s essays and stories examining the integration of a feminist sensibility and a kinky sexuality.

Follow Feminista Jones, who writes and speaks all over the place. You could start with this essay on Medium: My Sexuality Has a Dark Side–And Maybe Yours Does Too.

Transgender and Power Exchange

Double Edge, by Raven Kaldera, examines the intersection of transgender and BDSM.

Follow Lee Harrington, already mentioned.

Race and Power Exchange

Follow Mollena Willams-Haas, Midori and Feminista Jones; all already mentioned.

Royal Fetish Radio, with Jet Setting Jasmine and King Noir ranges over topics of kink, porn, politics and race.

Dark Connections is an education and social connection space by and for Black kinksters.

Disability and Power Exchange

Hell on Wheels, by Raven Kaldera, is an anthology of experiences of people who practice dominance with physical disabilities, and Mastering Mind, by Del Tashin & Raven Kaldera is an anthology of experiences of people who dominate with mental illness or neurological dysfunction. Both are full of proof that it can be done, and ideas and inspirations for how to do it.

Follow Robin Wilson-Beattie.

Online Education

Wicked Grounds started as a coffee shop, and evolved into an incredibly active hub for online kink workshops. They offer a packed schedule of classes on a wide range of kink topics from a wide range of qualified educators.

Kink Academy offers a huge catalog of educational videos on all kinds of kinky topics from experts in the field, including many of the folks already listed on this page.

Helping Professionals

The Kink Aware Professionals Directory maintained by the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom lists professionals in fields from counselling to law to web design who are informed and accepting of the diversity of consensual adult sexuality. Most of their members are located in the U.S. and Canada.

Health Care Without Shame, by Charles Moser M.D., contains guidance for kinky folk to navigate getting health care, and also advice aimed at health care providers themselves. So you can get it to read yourself, and also hand it to your doctor (or other provider) if you need them to understand those bruises on your partner.

Legal Help & Activism

The National Coalition for Sexual Freedom is the lobbying organization for kinky folks. They provide legal and political resources for people being persecuted or discriminated against because of their alternative sexual practices. They also fight for our collective rights, and could use your donation