Wednesday, September 13, 2006

One of THOSE Scenes -- aaack!

OK, so it's midnight, and I've just finished up my 10 pp per night quota ... but it feels more like I've finished writing something the length of WAR AND PEACE.

Yes. I have been writing one of THOSE scenes.

I don't write gratuitous sex. It's got to move the plot forward. I also don't do behind the bedroom door very well -- as you can tell from that noise over yonder -- that's the cackle of my CPs who are rolling on the floor, laughing their butts off.

I've had all sorts of advice about how to get this scene done ... from the sly wink and the "go experiment!" all the way to someone advising me to read The Song of Solomon. I admit, that particular part of The Old Testament is pretty racy!

Other advice has fallen somewhere in the middle -- a good bottle of wine, they tell me, will help loosen up the ol' inhibitions.

Yeah. Only, here's the problem. I don't drink.

I feel like maybe I should get started on rectifying that problem ASAP -- especially after this scene.

I've got it roughed out, but I can tell you, the rest of the story will be a piece of cake compared to writing this scene. The black moment is still firmly ahead -- something I usually dread writing. Not this time. Uh-uh.

Yup. Give me any number of black moments to one of THOSE scenes.

So how do you do it? How do you write THOSE scenes? I could use some advice right about now! And if you're fresh out of advice, how about sharing the misery and your opinions? Why ARE those scenes so blasted hard to write?!


tammy said...

Wow Cynthia - that's a tough question. Somebody needs to write a How To book on that I guess. ;-) I'm probably not going to be much help - ultimately, I think you just have to get as much in your character's heads as you can and steer them in the right direction and hope something magical happens. ?? LOL, Like I said, no help. Honestly though, you can't force something or it will not work. It will read forced and end up turning the reader off. Not just that way. ;-) But, off the book. Ok, that's not helping either. Actually, in my mss that's submitted right now, I'm worried there might be too much sex. The characters have a history. I think that made the difference. In the book that I'm working on now, I started with strangers, and I'm having a hard time with even just the attraction - they've got enough to deal with without thinking about getting busy. I'm a little worried about them, but I'm thinking if I just keep leading them in the right direction, sooner or later sparks are going to fly. Then, I'll just let them do whatever feels right for them.

Good luck with it! And oh, I'm a non-drinker myself. ;-) Maybe some music will help?

Evanne said...

I figure sex scenes are like any other scenes. They are easy or not because of the characters. The better I understand the characters the easier all scenes are to write.

Sex scenes carry an added burden.Like first meetings or kiss scenes most romances have them. It isn't the action that makes them special it is the emotion.

IMHO and unpublished opinion the difference between an intimate encounter that leaves the reader thrilled is the details employed.

Amy said...

I do it with a lot of complaining along the way. *g*

MaryF said...

I complain a lot, too. And I do have a beer. Or two. But once I write them, I don't have to revise them! (Well, ya know, except for the spelling)

Cynthia Reese said...

Wow ... thanks for the support! I think I've figured out just why these scenes are so difficult -- while all writing is personal, this is the MOST personal. We run the risk of being thought of plain vanilla and boring all the way to "well, THAT's icky!" Somewhere in there's a happy medium, but who knows where?

And Tammy, I know what you mean -- sometimes it's hard for me to add in that little tweak of sexual tension because I'm thinking, "Hey, with all this external and internal conflict, they're not even THINKING about that sort of stuff!"

Evanne, you and Tammy have it exactly right, I think -- it has to come from the characters.

Amy -- you haven't HEARD complaining until you've heard what my CPs have put up with about this dang scene! But it's good to know I'm part of a chorus of complainers and not the solo singer!

Mary F -- I'm jealous -- no revising? I have a feeling this scene will be revised out the wazoo!

JENNA said...

I'm fighting with my characters right now, so I am no help...

...but...I'm prepping for NaNo...and was a wonderin'...where's your NaNo now?

Julie said...

LOL, Cynthia! I have no advice, but I wish you luck!

I always have trouble with scenes where emotions run high. It's hard to know whether you're really conveying the feelings you want.