Always a fun subject for a Friday, huh? :giggle:

I was having a discussion with some friends yesterday about sex scenes in erotic romance, and it made me think about those of us who write sex scenes. And how we write them, or how they come to be.

When I write an erotic romance, I tend to plot out the storyline, with an inkling of where the sex scenes might go.

It very rarely works out that way. Why? Because I don’t dictate the sex in a story–my characters do.

(Insert much eye rolling from the disbelievers who say characters aren’t alive).

Clearly you don’t live in my head. Believe me…I don’t write the stories. They do. And they dictate the sex as much as the dialogue and the action and everything else. I’m merely the typist. :bat:

Anyway, back to the sex. As the story flows, the characters get to know each other. There’s tension–sexual tension–hopefully lots of it, because that’s what invests a reader in an erotic romance. You want to care about these characters, and you want to feel the heat between them. I know I do, because if I don’t, it’s delete city for that scene. :sasmokin:

There are no requisite number of sex scenes in my books. There is no formula for what kind of sex in my book. There is no chapter or page number where I start the sex scenes. In some books it’s in the first chapter. In others, not until much later in the book. I don’t have a checklist that says “vaginal, anal, oral, sex toys, bdsm, bondage, voyeurism, exhibitionism, etc etc etc.” I have never once tallied up the sex in my books. What happens sexually in a book is a unique as the characters in that book. In some books there’s a crapload of sex. In others, not so much. It really does depend on the characters. What they want, who they are, how they relate to each other and what the storyline is.

The one thing I try to do in my erotic romances is to make sure there’s always a depth of emotion in every sex scene. My sex scenes aren’t just physical–there’s an emotional bonding and connection between the characters, and I think this is vital to a good romance.

There’s nothing I find more boring than reading an erotic romance that looks as though the author has dropped sex scenes into a template and tried to build a story around the sex. Erotic romance isn’t just sex–and you can always tell when an author has tried too hard to make it that way. I find myself flipping pages because all I’m reading is sex sex sex. And frankly, without an emotional connection between the characters, without a story–I’m bored.

I build the sex around the story, because the story, the characters and the relationship always come first. The sex is a byproduct of all those things. A bonus, if you will. Build a sound story, a credible relationship, characters you can care about, and the sex flows naturally. We want them to have sex, we want them to show their feelings for each other, and sex is a way to do that.

I hope I’ve succeeded with my books.

So tell me, whether you’re a reader or a writer, what are you seeing in erotic romance these days? Is the sex easy to read, is there too much of it? Is it natural and seamless or stilted and obviously scripted?

And of course feel free to recommend authors who you think get it right.