I have a few more things to say about the doms who worked for me. Some of them have read my book and gotten back to me. Those who did think they were reasonably portrayed in the book. They also said they were happy I told the public about the grunt side of the dominatrix trade, meaning the paperwork, phone calls, cleaning and all that sort of thing. A couple of them told me that they had no idea until they read the book how horrible my earlier life was or what I have been through with all my legal battles or how many others were involved in these battles.
Some people were curious about whether I am in touch with the various doms who worked for me. Of course my answer is sometimes. I hear from a few of the gals from time to time. I don’t see any of them regularly, though. Where I live is not quite convenient to downtown Toronto. Also, they all know that it is hard for me to make dates and keep them, simply because I may not be well enough to do so that day. Also, most of my communication nowadays is with people involved with or following the decision striking down Canada’s prostitution laws.
Let me share some more thoughts about the pictures in the book. I had no photographs of the “Bondage Bungalow” which was the subject of the big trial in the 1990’s. It just never occurred to me or anyone else to take any. I learned and took many of my second house operated from 1999 to 2002, and I can assure you that it is fundamentally representative of what the first house was like inside. However, I am going to be posting, on my Facebook pages, some of the photographs taken by York Regional Police, inside the Thornhill Bondage Bungalow before they stripped it bare. You can see few of those items in the pictures in the book. This is because as I got most of the stuff lost in the raid on the first house back while I was operating the second house.
Some readers of the book have asked about the pictures in the book. One of the things they wanted to know was why the faces of some of the people in the pictures were obscured. Basically it was because you must have a person’s permission before you publish their image. This is something that must be done by a lawyer, and the editor’s advised me that it would not hurt the quality of the book if I protected privacy. I also wanted to reproduce newspaper headlines and photos in the book, but it involved so much extra work and expense that it was clear that I should use what was mine to use.
Some readers of the book from the United States and elsewhere have been in touch with me after reading the book. Some actually said reading got them thinking about how their authorities have dealt with people like me, a dominatrix. Some of them could never even recall a dom being busted in their community or city. Others said their police do not even bust prostitutes at all, not even the ones who work the streets. Still others said they could not recall any significant coverage of a trial such as mine. I reminded them that in the book I went into the reasons charges such as those against me rarely come to trial, and that there are in fact many women in jails in Canada and the U.S. that are basically forgotten.
Be sure to become a friend of mine on Facebook so you can follow all the detailed discussions and other things there. I have been asked, since the book came out, how I occupy my time. I have been spending, I would say, an average of about 30 minutes a day doing some administration for a local small business. I spend an average of about 2 hours a day on Facebook. I am “meeting” so many interesting people there and I have so much material accumulated over the years to share with them and the public. I can’t get to the gym or pool these days for a number of reasons, but I do my stretches at home. The social media interaction has made being home bound so much easier to deal with.
During the weeks I have been commenting about the impending release of the appeal decision questions and reactions to my book, Dominatrix on Trial, have been coming in. Also, thanks yet again to all those who have read it. Thanks as well to those who have commented on it. I am pleased that people who have been critical in their remarks were critical of the positions I have taken and not of the book. Dominatrix on Trial has been very well received. In the coming blogs I will share the questions and comments and my reactions to them.
I have had a lot of requests and questions from students writing papers on the current court decisions on the constitutionality of Canada’s laws to combat prostitution. For those who may not be aware I will offer the following sources of information. My recently published memoir, Dominatrix on Trial, has two chapters about the current matter. Go to the website dominatrixontrial.com for ordering details. Also, there are the links on this very website, terrijeanbedford.com as well as another site I have madamedesade.com. These sources provide the factual information on the matter, as well as my perspectives. In these blogs I will comment further once the decision on the appeal is released and my co-plaintiffs and I, and our lawyers, have had a chance to assess the decision and our options to respond.
I dedicated my recently published memoirs, called Dominatrix on Trial, to 12 people: “The Dozen”. Briefly, they are those who fought with me and enabled me to fight. One was a wealthy client. One a journalist and activist against the current laws back in the 1990’s. One was an owner of a cross dressers’ clothing store in Toronto, Paddy Aldridge. Another was her husband, one of the most well known transvestites in Toronto, known as Roxy. Roxy in normal life was a distinguished looking man who retired early to enjoy being his true self. Roxy died early in 2011. Paddy and I were with him when he died. Albert was a prosperous retiree who helped me financially and otherwise with my legal battles. He was in his late seventies when he began to do so and he is gone now too. Some clients and friends who have been helpful to me and my daughter to this day are among the dozen.
The range of backgrounds of this group is highly varied, but they all came forward to fight for me and with me, or help me in other ways. I think Dominatrix on Trial is as much about The Dozen as it is about me. My biggest regret about the book is that I could not do them justice. I tried, but their desire for privacy and the pressures of space in the book made me omit telling the reader the extraordinary things they did and what wonderful people they are. Maybe an entire book about them is in order. I will certainly consider it.
I am pleased to be able to tell you that the formal launch of my memoirs in the United States began earlier this week. The book was made available on the web sites of major retailers, such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Border and Chapters Indigo over the last month. There is usually a period of a couple of months for retailers to gradually begin their promotions, and this is a very quiet time of the year, being the end of summer vacations.
I do not have sales figures, as these don’t become available for some months yet. However, Barnes & Noble has conferred their Rising Star designation immediately and will be featuring the book. Early reactions from the industry have been most encouraging. The professionals in the publishing industry have been telling us that the book is a well paced page-turner and is well written. They have been impressed with the number of events and persons the book deals with and find my story to be a fascinating one.
I myself consider that I have been at the centre of a number of fascinating stories, and the number of people who have helped me over the years, such as the lawyers, activists and the group I call The Dozen, are as much the story as me. This is also part of their stories. It is also a Canadian story, about how Canadian society has dealt with the matters surrounding me and those who have stood with me, for me and against me.
I cannot begin to yet again express my gratitude to those who helped me write these memoirs. The editors at iUniverse were amazing. My personal lawyer, Sender Herschorn, reviewed the manuscript and made countless recommendations. In the early years the man called Scott in the book and the woman called Camilla, helped me draft some of the chapters about those times. This is their book too.
I hope you enjoyed or enjoy reading it.