Moira here welcoming you back to another #SensualSunday. No, today’s title isn’t a play on words in reference to a movie, although it was an awesome movie and I’ve never thought of tighty-whities ever the same. Today we’re going to discuss your characters getting frisky.
In the world of romance there is everything from a few chaste kisses and fade to black, to full out raucous free-for-all’s in the bedroom. Every author has their own level of comfort when it comes time to do a sex scene. Every author has to stay within their comfort zone when writing something that is essentially a personal peek behind the curtains, so to speak. But there are several things that have to be remembered when doing your sex scenes whether they be demure or XXX.
Several of us here on the blog have discussed “watching” how your characters move, and where this part goes in relation to other parts. After all, no one needs to have some guys or gals arm working independently across the room – that’s just downright creepy. Same thing with our discussions about keeping your characters in the set space, and not suddenly having furniture manifest or disappear from where everything began. It’s all about keeping the reader in the story, keeping the flow moving at a steady pace, and not doing anything to disrupt or jostle them loose.
Visualization is key. For myself I doodle out a little diagram of wherever my characters are getting busy to ensure that there’s nothing that will interfere with the mood I’ve set. This is important in the bedroom, even more so when they aren’t in a contained environment. An example would be your characters are in a field, there’s a stream or pond to the side, they are rolling around, stripping down, the heat is rising and suddenly they are walking on water. Say what?! Doesn’t happen in real life, and unless it’s a sci-fi where you can explain that shit away, don’t be doing it in your book.
While there’s a good portion of readers who might not notice the laws of physics, and reality are being toyed with, I’m not one of them. I’m a detail person – not claiming I’m perfect, no way I could and even I’ve had my characters in the wrong place at the damn wrong time – but when I’m reading a finished work there shouldn’t be these issues. Do the math. I know, who would’ve thought you’d use it in real life right? But if you’re ten feet off the bank of said water and you have them rolling around for over twelve, how are they not wet? This math also applies to every setting you use for your sex scene. Keep in mind that not every character you write is a gymnast (unless you have a series about a team), and not everyone has the same physical flexibility. On top of that, there are just places the human body is not comfortable being especially when they are supposed to be only focused on the other person in the scenario. Don’t ever put someone up on top of a gas range stove – EVER!
Thus my little doodles. It is a visual reminder of where I’ve said things are in my scene. Even the stuff I haven’t actually written in. It’s not like you’re going to describe a bedroom in every book, your readers will likely know what a bedroom has. It’s not like you need to describe your outdoor setting down to every last twig or leaf, it’s outdoors – we get the idea. But remembering where you have pictured things to be at the start by the time you get to the end of the scene is extremely important, especially to those readers who have an eye for detail.
So get out there and let your characters get their frisky business on. But no levitation, no water walking, and nothing with sharp edges or corners. Everyone will thank you, and may even comment about your attention to detail even with the little things.
XO Moira Callahan