Thursday, August 11, 2011

Recipe For a Great Sex Scene

Readers love a great sex scene that burns up the page. Who wants to read a bland sex scene? Most of my sex scenes are intense, hot and steamy. Those are the kind of sex scenes I want to read and so that is the way I write them. I will take you through a few ideas on how to write a smoking hot sex scene. I’m not an expert but a sprinkle of this and a dash of that can cause spontaneous combustion.

One Cup of Chemistry
Chemistry is the spark that drives your characters. The need to be with each other no matter how hard they fight it. But this chemistry should fall into place way before that first sex scene. By the time you get to the sex scene the reader should already be excited for your characters. Without chemistry the sex scene will fall short. Readers will be asking questions like: Why are they having sex? What is the purpose of this scene? Etc. You have to warm your reader up to your characters first. This is very important!

A Dash of Action and Reaction
This is very important too. Remember every action has a reaction. When your hero runs his hand over the heroine’s leg what does she feel? Step back and think. Feel the scene and experience what is going on. But be careful. Don’t write what you would do in that instance. Think about what your characters would do and feel. This keeps you from writing the same characters over and over. All my characters are very different and none of them react the same way.

A Sprinkle of the Five Senses
Remember this is what makes the scene come to live. When you talk about what things taste like, smell like, feel like, sound like, and look like, the reader plays that out in their heads. If you are talking about the taste of strawberries in a sex scene that reader will start to taste them on their tongue. These are the reactions you want to instill in the reader. Now you have pulled them into the scene. They are not just reading, now, they are experiencing the scene. Intimate scenes should be experienced.

A Pinch of Love
Love is what makes a romance work. Without it the story falls apart. Your reader wants to feel the love your characters have for each other. This is the building block for all romances. Don’t jip your reader. Believe me they will notice and not be happy about it. You promised a romance be sure to hold up to your end of the bargain.

When Writing a Sex Scene

Throw your nerves out the window! I know easier said than done. But to be a good romance writer you have to push past the nerves. Stop thinking about what your Momma would say. Your characters aren’t you and won’t react like you. So don’t push your values on them. Let your characters do what feels right to them. Some characters will be more out going than others but just be sure they are holding true to their personality. This is so important! You can’t write a naive character and turn her into a sex kitten over night. Now in time that would be fine but don’t shock your reader.

A good sex scene should be an experience for the reader. They want to be pulled in and forget they are reading. If the reader gets all hot and bothered that’s a good thing. Isn’t that the whole reason we write them? I mean do you want your reader to say yeah it was okay? Or do you want your reader to say wow that was hot? I don’t know about you but I want my readers to say my sex scenes were smoking.

When I first stared writing romance and hit my first sex scene I stuttered. I had so many things going through my head. What would my parents think? What would other people think of me? Then I wrote my first one and it wasn’t that bad. Now I just write them. Sometimes I struggle but it is usually about getting the scene right not about the actual writing of it. Now before anyone says anything my mother has read my work and she loves it. So I did cross that bridge. LOL! There is nothing wrong with writing sex in a romance. I have come to realize this is my dream and if someone doesn’t like it then too bad. Hope this helped! I have attached a sex scene from one of my WIP below.

How do you write a great sex scene?
Do you have a method to share?

Happy Reading and Writing.
Tabitha Blake

Here is an excerpt from A Vamp To Remember. Just for those that don’t know Caleb is a shifter. Hope you enjoy it.
Excerpt: A Vamp to Remember By Tabitha Blake
Caprice crossed Caleb’s office in a few quick strides, her stilettos clicking a steady rhythm on the tile floor. He held up a finger and pressed the phone tighter to his ear as the fingers of his other hand tapped the keys on his computer.
She smiled and flipped her hair over her shoulder. He wouldn’t be able to ignore her for long. Staring out the balcony doors, a cool breeze blew long strands of black hair around her face. Roses bloomed, bright reds and yellows, in the garden below. The smell of lilies was carried on the gentle wind.
 Caprice turned her head in Caleb’s direction, and another smile curved her lips when she noticed  his coppery eyes undressing her. He had the most gorgeous and unique eyes, the color reminded her of a brand new penny. His gaze alone did dangerous things to her. One look and she melted. All thoughts gone but the thought of what he could do to her body. The man was beyond sinful with a physique to match. Tall and lean with sinewy muscles that carved his body, he was built like a golden god.
A seductive smile played across his lips as he hung up the phone and made his way over to her. He stood behind her. His arms snaked around her waist and pulled her back against his hard chest.
“Sorry, that was my broker,” he murmured against her neck.
A shiver danced along her spine. “I was thinking . . .”
He nuzzled her ear. “What were you thinking?”
Goose bumps broke out over her body as his breath grazed her ear. The simplest little thing and he had her all out of sorts. “I want to put a koi pond in the garden.”
He kissed the hollow of her neck, feather light brushes of his lips that heated her blood. She felt his nostrils flare as he drank in her scent. Desire scorched through her veins and coiled between her thighs as his hand smoothed up her legs.
She moaned in response. “Are you listening to me?”
“Absolutely. A koi pond…” He nipped at her neck and his words came out as a sultry growl. “That…sounds…great… but you know what I really want to do?”
“What would that be?” she said on a breathless whisper. The need to inhale his masculine scent had her gasping for the tantalizing musk and spice that lingered in the air. She loved his aroma, it was heady and sexy as hell.
 “Should I tell you or would you like me to show you?”
 She raised a finger to her lips and replied. “Well, let me see… show me.”
Pulling her hips back to meet his, he trailed a hand over her belly, down the front of her skirt. “I was hoping you would say that.” 
Her body smoldered as liquid heat seared her to the bone. His touch was decadent and provoked feelings…no not feeling, urges. He brought out the animalistic impulses in her, and she liked it; he was the only man that made her forget to breathe. His erection pushed against her backside. Her panties dampened in anticipation. The need to touch him clawed at her every nerve.
Deep masculine laughter rumbled through him as his hand disappeared under her skirt. “I was thinking of dipping into something wet but it has nothing to do with a pond.”
His touch abraded the tender skin of her inner thigh. She leaned her head back on his shoulder and rubbed her hips against his hard groin. “Tell me more.”
“I want to peel the clothes from your body and take you right here on my desk.”
Caprice glanced back at his mahogany desk. “Bending over your desk might be nice.” She smiled, a devilish smile over her shoulder.
He spun her around and tugged her forcefully against his chest. “You do…do ya?”
He gripped her hand and placed it on his rock hard bulge. “Do you feel what you do to me?”
Her long fingers ran the length of his zipper. He bucked his hips towards her. “Mmmm…yes, I like it.” She ran her tongue over her suddenly dry lips.
His gaze followed her tongue and his eyelids grew heavy with passion. The urges tugged at her self-control. She reached for his shirt and tore it open, buttons flew, hitting the floor like little pin drops. Her nails traced his right nipple. He sucked in a deep breath.
“You tease.” He grabbed the back of her hair and jerked her into submission. Tilting her head back, he ran his tongue from her collarbone to her jaw. She hummed as heat radiated through her body.
She liked her men dominate in bed. A man that knew what he wanted and took it without
The animal inside Caleb growled in satisfaction. He turned to his desk and cleared it in one quick swipe of his hand. Folders, papers and pens flew to the floor. He smiled as the heat of his passion raged out of control. He needed her more than he needed to breathe. She brought out the cat he shared his mind, body and soul with. A snarl escaped his parted lips as he lifted Caprice onto the desktop. She writhed under his touch. She liked it a little rough and his animal purred at her response to his dominance.
 She reached for his pants and freed his pulsing shaft. “Caleb I need you now. I can’t wait any longer. I am burning up.”
Her hand ran the length of his desire and his body jumped as she caressed him. He raised her skirt and tore away the small scrap of lace she called panties. Why she even wore any was beyond his comprehension. Moaning in his ear, she parted her long graceful legs for him. An invitation he welcomed. In one quick motion, he dove into her moist heat. As her wet sheath gripped him, he roared his pleasure echoing through the room. Her body contracted around his shaft, wringing another moan from them both. She clawed his back, urging him on. The need to feel her milk him to completion pulsed through his body. “So soft and wet.” He growled into her ear.
Caprice tilted her head, exposing the smooth, pale skin of her throat. A pleasurable cry tore from her as her sex grasped him in her release. She was so beautiful, eyes closed, her legs squeezing his hips as she rode wave after wave of pleasure. His body tightened with each contraction. Trusting deeper and faster until he yelled out in ecstasy. He collapsed over her, trying to catch his breath.
 “About that Koi pond,” she said in a breathless whisper.
 His eyes widened. “What?”
 Her passion hazed eyes crinkled at the corners as she smiled. “I’m just kidding. That was amazing.”
He relaxed into her soft body, and his own smile stretched his lips wide. “You’re going to kill me one day woman. But what a hell of a way to go.”


Karen Michelle Nutt said...

I enjoyed your post. There's nothing better than a little teasing before the hero and heroine finally make the commitment to move the caressing to the bedroom...or desk... wherever their passion takes them.

Great example excerpt, too.

Harlie Reader said...

Great post and I would have to agree. The best part of a sex scene is the anticipation and sexual tension build up that the writer has done.

Great excerpt example.

Harlie Reader said...

Following your blog now.

Jennifer Lowery (Kamptner) said...

Love a good sex scene where you have been dying for pages and pages for the h/h to get together! Great post!

Brenda said...

LOL, I love when you said: Don't jip your readers. You're so right. When purchasing a novel to read, I flip to the first sex scene, and if the sparks fly, I buy the book.

Tabitha Blake said...

Karen: LOL! Thanks! I agree, be sure and set the scene up way before you get there. If you don't have the sexual tension then the scene will fall flat.

Harlie Reader: Glad you enjoyed the excerpt it is one of my favorites. I just love Caleb and Caprice's chemistry. Glad you signed up to follow the blog.

Jennifer: It can be daunting while waiting for that first scene thats why when the times comes you expect fireworks and the author should not disappoint the reader.

Brenda: Funny! I am picturing you standing in the book store drooling. LOL! But it is true we expect amazing sex scenes in the books we read. There is nothing more disappointing than a sex scene that falls flat. We want steamy sex scenes. Don't let the reader down it may be the first and last of your books they buy.

Thanks for commenting everyone!

jean hart stewart said...

Fantastic sex scene...that would heat anybody up....Jean

Tabitha Blake said...

Thanks Jean! Its one of my favorites!

yvonnenicolas said...

Rules I always write by. ;o) fabulous blog post.

Brenda Charles said...

The first sex scene I wrote, my mother in law read and then exclaimed why did I leave the room before they got down to business. The tension was great right up till that point, but I left her wanting more. I just wanted to give them their privacy. It didn't work. We don't want to piss off our readership (even if it only consisted of family at that point). With the help of my critique partners and some direction to a naughty thesaurus. I got through it. NOw, I love writing them, getting swept up in the emotion of it all. Yummy!! Brenda L.

Casea Major said...

Great post, Tabitha! I so agree. Action/reaction and 5 senses are so important. I love to incorporate sound and smell into every sex scene. Those two just really turn me on. And I enjoy a little bit of dialogue with my sex.

Tabitha Blake said...

Yvonne:Thanks! It was fun to write. It always amazes me how much I have learned and can now share with others. LOL!

Brenda C: Yeah I hate closed door scenes. But I understand in the beginning it is scary but after you get past the nerves they are so much fun.

Casea: Oh yeah dialogue is a must have in a sex scene. Plus it is fun when the characters add a bit of their personalities to the mix. And there is nothing like a little humor or a little shock with dialogue. LOL! Hence the Koi pond. LOL!

Thanks guys for the comments!

Allison Merritt said...

I am the worst at writing sex scenes, so every scrap of advice helps me. Great post, love the excerpt.

Tabitha Blake said...

Thanks Allison! It gets better with time. I am far from a pro at it but I agree every little bit of advice helps. Glad I could help. That is one of my favorite scenes. Caleb and Caprice are two every dominate characters that sizzle off the page. I can't take too much credit it is all them. If the characters sizzle then so will the scene.

Jenna said...

I must admit I like writing sex scenes too. I try to put myself into the character to help me gauge their emotions and needs, but the writer in me is also standing back, looking at variety--words, dialogue, positions.

Very tricky to get just right. Great recipe, Tabitha.

Tabitha Blake said...

Jenna: Thanks! Yeah sex scenes can be a lot of fun and work. With all the different aspects you have to put into them. The physical, emotional, dialogue and don't forget they have to interact with their surroundings. I find if I write down a list of all the physical things that need to happen it makes it easier to get the emotions etc right.

Ambrielle Kirk said...

Great post, Tabitha. Awesome tips on what asex scene should be :)
Ambrielle Kirk

Kaye Spencer said...

My first menage (M/F/M) was the sex scene that I've had the most trouble writing. There were so many extra "parts" to deal with and using pronouns didn't flow as easily: two "he", two "him", etc. I had to use the guy's names more than I usually do in a sex scene. I also found it challenging to make sure everyone had something to do to keep themselves occupied. LOLOL


Tabitha Blake said...

Thanks Ambrielle!

Tabitha Blake said...

Kaye: Yeah that would be tough. I have a hard enough time with two people. LOL! Throw in a third and I am all out of sorts about it. But I have read a few and really enjoyed them. So kudos to anyone that can write it well.

chitrader said...

I'm not a romance writer, not much more than an aspiring suspense writer, but my idea of a good sex scene is where the author is the tour guide, leading the reader along, but letting them fill in their own details, because everyone's idea of great sex may be different, and the more ambiguous/less explicit you are, the more the reader will fill in the blanks with her/his own interpretation of what's happening. Give 'em the basic structure, let them do the details in their minds. Much like Hitchcock leaving the violence and terror mostly to our imaginations.

That said, I also think you need to hit 'em over the head at the beginning of the scene, so they know just how wild they can let their imaginations run.


Tabitha Blake said...

Chris: I think it all depends on the story and the genre you write in. I also think the readers needs to know what they are reading before they open the book. We all have a limit to our heat level and there is nothing wrong with that. But you also need to understand that the writer will write what feels right for their characters. Some will be a little more wild and crazy in the sack than others. This is where staying true to your characters comes into play. Never deviate from what the reader expects from the characters. This will shock your readers and they don't like those kinds of surprises.

Joanna Aislinn said...

You mentioned all the key elements necessary to a sex scene, most especially, that it needs to be vital to the story. And I'll add this: too many in one book can be overkill like anything else.

BTW, Tabitha, I love your header image--awesome.

Tabitha Blake said...

Thanks Joanna! I agree totally. Too much of a good thing just turns out to be too much. You can go overboard with so many things in writing. Too many characters, Sex scenes, plot twists, etc. Sometimes less is more. Other wise you desensitize your reader and the things that were supposed to grab them don't.