The Kiss by Rodin
A couple days ago I wrote about the 6 lessons I learned during my first year with the RWA, and I, fool that I am, left out sex. Duh!
How can I be a modern Romance writer of any sub-genre and leave out sex? The short answer is I can’t, but the longer answer is more complicated–like sex, itself.
Let’s see, here are the three big things I’ve learned about sex…I mean about writing sex, good sex, in the last year.
One – slow it down
I took a fantastic on-line course on writing sex with Mary Buckham who meticulously took us through the stages writers need to address before the big <drum roll>shall we say, climax. When she read a paragraph I wrote for my first chapter, she wisely tore it apart and told me not to go all hubba hubba too soon.
It seems the art of writing good sex is not that dissimilar from the real thing. Foreplay is not only necessary. it’s exquisitely tempting.
Two – don’t make it read like a manual, unless of course it is
Our readers are not virgins and many parts of the description can be imagined without explicit detail. What you leave to the imagination is important.
Three – anchor it
This I got from an article written by Diana Garibaldon (see my post about it for more information). Sex in a romance book is about emotion, but you need to anchor it with details here and there. For example the cold brick wall she leaned against when they were kissing felt…, and good dialogue. The sex naturally develops from the relationship between the characters.
I can’t say I’m all that comfortable yet, with writing sex scenes, but I’m going with Janet Evanovich’s cure for such an ailment: “Get over yourself.” (taken from her book on writing)
So…yeah…I have a lot more to learn about sex. It’s a rough job:)