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Rhush
07-09-2005, 02:06 AM
Hi everyone. I am VERY new to this section and could use some help. I have an editor over at Kensington who is interested in taking on my action/adventure novel, but she would like me to pop in two love scenes. One hetro and one lesbian. My question is, how far am I supposed to go with these scenes? Ive heard that "sex scene" doesnt mean "sex manuel" so I get that, but as someone who never reads erotica, Im at a loss here. Does anyone have any useful advice or suggestions as to books I could look over? Thanks!

pepperlandgirl
07-09-2005, 02:28 AM
Don't be technical and mechanical. Focus on the emotions that the act evokes, the physical sensations, and the senses. Use all five senses to provide details. Don't use purple prose. If you're going to refer to a c.o.c.k call it a c.o.c.k. If you're too shy to use the real words, than you're not going to be able to write a good scene. Make sure that what your characters are doing is physically possible.

That's general advice. It would be easier to give specific advice if we could see what you've written.

MarkEsq
07-09-2005, 02:39 AM
Definitely focus more on the lesbian scene, definitely. Probably should have some pictures, too, assuming the characters are hot model-types.

(Note: I am a literary genius not a pervert, therefore take my advice. Take it!!!)

:)

veinglory
07-09-2005, 04:09 AM
I assume there are natural places for the sex scenes to occur. I suggest describing the sex in a similar way to your other action--don't suddenly become either more poetic or more coarse. Don't make the mistake of seeing sex as any different to other action--no purple prose, no 70's style panting and unbelievable orgasms. Don't think 'erotica' too much as you are fantasy genre with a sex scene or too--not erotica genre!

*But* if they ask for 'sex' scenes they totally want you to go all the way. reasonably full description of foreplay and sex to the point of climax. You might want to look at other fantasy stories that have sex scenes. Raptor has s lot, I will try and think of others that have one or two.

Congrats on getting in the door of such a great imprint--very well done!

AprilBoo
07-10-2005, 06:15 AM
Congrats! As to advice, the only thing I have to add is that you should make sure you find the best, most effective, most appropriate places in the story for the sex scences. They should be part of the action, not an interruption, and help move the plot just like any other action would.

Writer2011
07-14-2005, 04:44 AM
I am currently working on a collection of short stories :) Don't want to give away too much... My question is, how detailed should you be? (i.e....setting, describing the person, what they are wearing ect...) Maybe I should rephrase it...:) Are there certain "rules" to writing sex scenes?? Should they be told in first person? If someone as any answers, please PM b/c it's easier for me to keep up with...Thanks.

Bill

Cathy C
07-14-2005, 06:04 AM
Don't use purple prose. If you're going to refer to a c.o.c.k call it a c.o.c.k. If you're too shy to use the real words, than you're not going to be able to write a good scene.

Now, see -- I'll have to disagree with you here, pepperlandgirl. I think it's more important to keep in the tone of the PERSON in the book than to worry about the phrasing. A whole bunch of men in the world DON'T refer to their genitals with that word, just like a whole bunch of women don't refer to their own genitals as "my c*nt."

It's also pretty unlikely that the average joe off the street would use raw language during a first sexual encounter, unless they know the person really well! It's pretty easy to offend a brand new sexual partner by using terminology that will make them feel like a whore. Some people like it, but a lot of people don't. Just like real life. (And let's face facts -- guys and gals don't really TALK that much the first time, anyway!)

I think sometimes writers get too wrapped up with what they THINK the reader wants and forget that the characters in the book have to feel REAL enough to the reader to get lost in the scene. Our books have sex. They have really good sex. But there are no four letter words, AND no purple prose. There's a third solution, and that's to be true to how the characters would describe the act if they were live people! :)

veinglory
07-14-2005, 06:29 AM
One still has to refer to the male and female parts -- as I writer across the romance to erotica spectrum I really don't know what there is that refers to these parts that isn't either profane or purple?

Of course most people would never actually say any of these words but when we describe what they are doing with them we do need some nouns!

pepperlandgirl
07-14-2005, 09:27 AM
It's also pretty unlikely that the average joe off the street would use raw language during a first sexual encounter, unless they know the person really well! It's pretty easy to offend a brand new sexual partner by using terminology that will make them feel like a whore. Some people like it, but a lot of people don't. Just like real life. (And let's face facts -- guys and gals don't really TALK that much the first time, anyway!)

I never mentioned "using raw language." I didn't mention dialogue at all. It's the language the author chooses to use. But I would rather read, "Rebecca pulled his stiff c.o.c.k from his fly and stroked the shaft" than torturous and circular prose that implies he has a stiff c.ock, but is much, much too refined to say the word!

maestrowork
07-14-2005, 06:24 PM
what the heck is wrong with "his ginormous love stem"?

veinglory
07-14-2005, 07:32 PM
purple-headed warrior? ;)

Cathy C
07-14-2005, 08:51 PM
I never mentioned "using raw language." I didn't mention dialogue at all. It's the language the author chooses to use. But I would rather read, "Rebecca pulled his stiff c.o.c.k from his fly and stroked the shaft" than torturous and circular prose that implies he has a stiff c.ock, but is much, much too refined to say the word!

Okay, that's fair. I tend to write in first person, so even the descriptions are technically dialogue to me (merely in their head.) But I still believe that there's an acceptable third option. Our sex scenes are hot, but don't really ever name a body part, nor use circular language. But yeah -- to me, c.o.c.k is a raw term. I'm not shy, and I'm not offended by it, nor do I think I'm too "refined," but I like doing it differently.

I just disagree that it's not possible to write a very good scene without. It's the writer's preference, and the editor's.

veinglory
07-14-2005, 08:56 PM
But my question really was is there any such thing as a description of sex with no genetalia nouns that is not circular? If you are describing tab a entering slot b (this is erotica after all so the act needs to be described) how can you not mention either tab a or slot b without being circular or purple?

maestrowork
07-14-2005, 09:29 PM
My full glory penetrated her dark, wet cave.


Nothing purple about that. ;)

Cathy C
07-14-2005, 11:50 PM
Well, I guess I'm still responding to the original question from Rhush. Even though it's posted here in Erotica, if she's only adding in two love scenes in the entire book, I'm not sure she IS writing erotica. If Kensington is considering it for their new erotica line, great and then anything goes. But that's not the impression I got. So, I guess my question is:


Rhush, do you know which line Kensington is considering the book for?

As for whether it can be done, this is a bit of one scene from our August release from Tor. It's a paranormal, where he's a shapeshifting python and she's a Komodo Dragon. It's being narrated by a man who's trapped inside the memory. The advance reviewers have given it high marks for erotic:


Her voice was close to panic. "He will kill us. I am his mistress, Robart, not just his enforcer."
Bobbyís eyes widened, and then closed. His breath and heart both stilled for a moment. He hadnít known. He put his lips to her neck . . . one last time before he let her go.

But the taste made desire tighten his body. He slowly unwound one arm from hers and placed it close to her mouth.

"Tell me you can taste me and then ignore this feeling, Asri." He slid his sweated skin across her lips. It was as though an electric shock ran through her when she flicked her tongue from her mouth. Her heart jumped and pounded like a caged animal.

"Itís like nothing Iíve ever . . . I . . . I canít . . . think, Robart."

"Nor can I. Right now, all I can do is feel." His voice lowered even further, to a hiss that raised the hair on her neck. "Some things are worth dying for, Asri." He put his lips to her throat, and then bit the skin lightly. She gasped and then whimpered. With a sudden movement that surprised him, she pushed backward quickly and he slipped inside her.

Their combined moan filled the room. Time stopped as they moved together. I could feel every violent thrust, hear her cries as he wrapped himself around her. She raised his weight until she was on her knees and then met every one of his movements until they became one body, one mind, one immense sensation.

Her cries as she climaxed hit him in the chest. I recognized the sensation, but it was new to him. He had hoped to hold out, to savor this experience, but his body wouldnít cooperate. When she went over, so did he. He thrust hard once, filling her, but it started another orgasm in her. His mind spun in a haze of pleasure as they climaxed together over and over, and the scent of the deepest jungle filled the air.

The memory, because thatís what it had to be, fast forwarded to the bedroom. Bobby was miserable, waiting on the chair while Asri showered. She was terrified, angry with herself, and they were now late to pick me up and get to the airport. She was scrubbing with peppermint soap to try to erase the scent of their sex. He could smell it. Bobby knew he should, as well. He knew he must ó for a thousand reasons, none of which made much sense to him at the moment.

He heard the water turn off and movement as she stepped out of the shower and shut the curtain. He steeled himself and walked in the bathroom to take his turn with the peppermint soap. Asri had just finished combing her hair and she turned suddenly. She didnít notice him in the doorway. She hit him full in the chest with a grunt. The moment froze as their startled eyes met at the same moment their naked bodies did. Then the sheer power of physical need hit him once more and there was no thought, no words. He only remembered touching her waist with his hands, and then she was in his arms again. Her mouth found his. It was hot and hungry, taking his tongue inside and biting lightly. He lifted her up onto the countertop and was inside her before he could think.


As I said, just our preference. :)

veinglory
07-15-2005, 12:39 AM
It's a good example and I can now see how it would work so long as the scene was not too lengthy--and in adventure/fantasy genre fiction it doesn't need to be lengthy.

AprilBoo
07-15-2005, 04:18 AM
I think some genres call for the sex to be circular. Erotica, of course, is looking for it to be direct.

The example posted is a good one, but I have to ask, would it be different if you were writing about two non-shapeshifting humans? I mean, you can't really use the standard genital nouns when you have a python and a Komodo dragon bedding down (I don't know what kind of genitals those two animals have but I doubt they're very sexy), so that makes the circular route your only option. But in straight romance, the circular route can undermine your credibility.

LOL at "fully glory" and "cave" - and what about her glory? How come the man is so majestic and the woman is all creepy and dank? :)

Cathy C
07-15-2005, 05:08 AM
LOL! They're in human form at the time. Nobody will touch beastiality... ;) And it is being marketed as "sexy romance" rather than erotica.

But from what I've heard about the new Kensington erotica line, it's supposed to be sassy, funny erotica, which is another reason I was wondering about the adventure one of Rhush's.

AprilBoo
07-15-2005, 05:33 AM
Okay...so you can tell I don't read or know anything about genres that involve shape-shifting humans...sounds like there are lots of complicated rules with personifying animals...would two animals having sex be considered bestiality? I thought that was just a human-to-animal thing? Never mind. I'm not going to be writing either anytime soon.

veinglory
07-15-2005, 05:40 AM
As long as they are intelligent beings it isn't counted as beastiality regardless of the physical form--but most people want human form erotica.

Cathy C
07-15-2005, 05:50 AM
Hmm. Boy, I don't know about that. I tried a scene where only one was in his animal form, and "intelligence" didn't mean much. Out it went! <g> I noticed the same thing on the EC site and Wings Epress, too. But if you know anyone doing it, I've got a WIP or two.


Paranormal is a very free and open subgenre, AprilBoo. You can have shapeshifters of lots of different descriptions. Katie MacAlister's new series has shapeshifting dragons, and Kenyon and Feehan both have wolves, bears and other animals. I think it's still a no-no to have them "mate" in animal form, though. At least, I haven't seen it yet, even in those where both parties are sentient and would consent.

veinglory
07-15-2005, 06:40 AM
I didnt go there with my werewolf book--I got pretty close in the draft version but figured it would be easier if they just stayed human. Maybe I'll see how much further I can get in the sequel ;)