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By Ciara LaVelle, Kat Bein, Carolina Del Busto, and Liz Tracy
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"Wide-eyed, you take it all in. Suddenly things go sour. A fully clothed woman is screaming at a naked man her husband apparently with another woman. Neither knew the other was at the party or a swinger until that moment."
Wow, that sounds really disgusting!
Nonetheless The Bitch phoned Ferguson for some more salacious details. Now in his thirties and living in North Carolina with his wife and two children, Ferguson is actually promoting his second book, a Carolinas-based erotic mystery called Scandalous. It was the Opa-locka native's debut novel Swingers, which came out in 2004, that was based on black professionals in Miami who do as the title suggests.
Amazingly, though, Ferguson turned out to be pleasant and down-to-earth. He says he visits his dozens of Miami relatives regularly. In the mid-Nineties, Ferguson explains, he was single, bored with his job as a hotel cook, and drawn into Miami's swinger world by friends. He claims he never took part, just watched.
"What you see on HBO's Real Sex, that's the scaled-down version," Ferguson says by way of description. While the parties began modestly and normally enough with hors d'oeuvres and wine served perhaps at a house in the Gables or equally suburban environs, it wasn't long before the horizontal gymnastics kicked in. "You've got 'pool parties' going on and couples everywhere," Ferguson recalls.
It was not, however, a totally random kind of stranger-meet-stranger deal. Most of those in the decidedly exclusive realms of Miami's upper-middle-class black swingers know one another, Ferguson says.
Ferguson penned Swingers in his free time and sold it to Two of a Kind Publishing in late 2003. By the spring of 2004, the book had made number four on Essence magazine's best-seller list, based on sales at black-run bookstores around the nation. At an Aventura book-signing, Ferguson was amazed by the reaction. "I had a ton of people say, 'Yeah I'm a swinger,'" he recalls.