Writing Spicy When Your Life is Vanilla

Writing Spicy When Your Life is Vanilla, Guest post by Deana Birch

Without getting into detail, but as you can already decipher from the title of this article, my life does not mirror that of the characters in my book. I am a normal(ish) middle-aged woman with kids, dishes in my sink, and an annoying but adorable dog. I bake cookies, tie shoes, and am thankful the stage of wiping noses is behind me.

I also write steamy sex scenes. And I assure you I have not experienced first-hand the same intimate moments that are in my books. *Disclaimer for my husband if he ever reads this: We’re good, baby.*

Writing Spicy When Your Life is Vanilla, Guest post by Deana Birch
Writing sex can be hard. Sorry! That was too easy of a joke to leave out! But seriously, it is a tread lightly watch your adjectives and analogies kinda business. I tend to lean for calling a spade a spade, otherwise the descriptions of our private bits can take a reader right out of the moment and give them a direct ticket to Cringe-town.

Great sex is proceeded by a few of things. One is tension. Building up the energy between the involved parties is essential. Slowing down the pace, drawing out the details, and keeping that thread of uncertainty will really enhance the actual moment. And those are the spaces in which the chemistry is shown and proven to the readers. Thus, making the audience engaged and enthralled in the story.

The other, in my opinion, is flirting. Depending on the trope, flirting may take on different forms. An enemies-to-lovers, for example, will have them insulting each other but smart readers understand that the frustration is part of the attraction. Whatever the story, playfulness included in the rising action (total pun intended), for me, is an important element. I love seeing teasing, winking, and all swoon worthy charming behavior.

When you get to the act, remember to make it plausible. I’m all for the suspension of disbelief. In fact, I rely on it for certain aspects of my stories. But not here. Seventy-eight climaxes in twenty-four hours? When did they eat? Who is this person? The yoda of sex? My point is, keep it real-ish. Unless you’re writing Paranormal or Shifters. Then, do your thing, girl (or guy).

But giving readers a freckle of something they can relate to is usually enough to experience the believability of the scene. Enough to want to change places with one of your characters because they’ve fallen in love with the other.

Finally, try to be original. I read as much as I can, in and out of the romance genre. And each time I come to a love scene, whether just a kiss or taking the tug boat all the way to tuna town, I dissect the moment. I remember the bits that worked and try to learn from them. But then, I build a framework of reasons why it was effective and morph it into something for my own writing.

Mostly though, I try not to repeat what I’ve already done with previous characters. I want my readers to have a fresh experience each time they pick up one of my books but know they can rely on me for a certain quality and attention to detail.

As far as inspiration? What can I say? My characters are horn-dogs.

Writing Spicy When Your Life is Vanilla, Guest post by Deana Birch
Contemporary romance and erotica writer Deana Birch was named after her father’s first love, who just so happened not to be her mother. Born and raised in the Midwest, she made stops in Los Angeles and New York before settling in Europe where she lives with her own blueeyed Happily Ever After. Her days are spent teaching yoga, playing tennis, ruining her children’s French homework, cleaning up dog vomit, writing her next book, or reading someone else’s.

Deana’s Rock and Roll Romance, FASTER, released June 26, 2018. She is a Mid-Western girl transplanted to Europe where she lives with her own happily-ever-after and two daughters.


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