Friday, September 14

Should They or Shouldn't They?


 I notice I always reach the same dilemma in most of my stories. When should the characters get it on? It's inevitable that at some point in the story they will. After all I write adult paranormals. No, not erotic paranormal romance (though some of my friends would argue that point) but the bedroom door stays wide open. But when do the characters hit the sheets?

Sex scenes are not easy for me to write. But if the timing is off, they're impossible. There's a little voice going off in the back of my head saying, "They shouldn't be doing it yet." I always listen to that voice. I've put a book down before because they characters meet on page one and are getting it on on page three.  Of course, if it's erotica, or an erotic romance, that could fly. But for an open bedroom door romance? I start wondering,  where's the romance? Sometimes, there can be extenuating circumstances that lead to a quick romp. I get that. Sometimes those little twists keep me turning the page.

What about you? How do you decide when your characters have sex?

14 comments:

  1. I don't think I decide. I don't really like writing them and usually skip over them when I'm reading (nope, not a prude--I'm just more interested in the story). When it's time, I guess it's just time. Good post, Shawn.

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    1. LOL. I usually skip the sex too because I want to get back to the plot, too.

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    2. I only skip the sex if there's so much of it that it becomes mundane.

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  4. Good question, Shawn. I think it depends on the story. In my current RS, I'm seriously considering not letting them fall into the sheets until the very end, but I've already written their first scene (about chapter 7 or so) and it happened because the heroine decides to step out of her box and be seductive because her life's been so ordinary and she's so attracted to this guy. Does that qualify as extenuating circumstances for a romp? Now I'm wondering if I can make the guy's devotion to her (as the mystery becomes more dangerous) believable without the sex...hmmmmm...

    Sorry for the deleted comments--for some reason, I can't spell this morning...more coffee!!

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    1. I think the heroine stepping out of her comfort zone is a good reason. Don't worry about the typo's. The spelling trolls zap me all the time!

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  5. great post - and something I struggled with in the book I just turned in. I think sex comes when the characters are ready for a change - maybe not the full-on emotional change the HEA brings.

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    1. I agree. Full on emotional love isn't always why my characters have their "first time." But it can't be "I think you're cute. Let's have sex."

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  6. I love this post. I went to a talk a few years ago by Julia Ross, and she said to not have a love scene if it could fit in any other book. It makes sense, and I've always followed her advice.

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  7. Writing Bix, I haven't had that come up yet. Why does everything I write today seem to have a double-entente?

    Seriously, I think you just know when the time is right--like real life :) and when it's wrong, it's still sex, so....

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  8. Very good question!! In the past IT has happened when the couple married, or at least at the end of the book when they have become emotionally invested in the relationship and they are literally starving for more. Don't want to be prudish, however. (I'm betting my current WIP will be a lot different!)

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