Fellow author Lauren Dane has a wonderful post up on her blog about S.E.X. She brings up some fabulous points about the heights [and often depths] authors will go to in order to write “hot.”
I agree with Lauren 100% that what’s ‘erotic’ doesn’t necessarily lie in how many sex scenes you can cram into your story, or how many pages each one takes up. And this post at Star-Crossed Romance by Lynda K. Scott sums up my feelings on ‘erotic’ language.
It’s not what words you use, or how many pages you fill up with sex, or how many positions you can invent that makes a story erotic or sexy, or even good. It’s how you can make your readers feel about your characters and what they’re doing that’s important.
Like Lauren, I’ve read books with relatively few sex scenes that I thought were incredibly sexy. A smoldering look can be sexier than a chapter-long, ten-position roll in the sheets if it’s used properly. For me, to be perfectly honest, it’s the buildup that’s far sexier than anything else.
One of the reasons I’m a huge fan of Karen Marie Moning is because her stories, IMHO, build the reader up to the breaking point. By the time her characters actually have sex, I’m dying for it to happen. The actual scene may only be a page or so long, but it’s a mental release for me, as it’s a physical and emotional release for the characters. I’m a firm believer that one of the best parts of sex is the anticipation. The excitement should begin to build long before the characters hit the bedroom [or the floor or the wall or the backseat, it doesn’t matter where] and have the reader literally aching for the moment when they finally get it together. That’s sexy.
My goal has always been to write stories that make readers desperate to turn the pages before and after the sex scenes [or love scenes] since not everything I write is erotic romance. I want readers to find as much satisfaction in a story where the hero and heroine don’t make love until the final chapter, as they do in my erotic romances where sex is an integral part of the plot.