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Monday, February 20, 2012

WRITING TIP: KEEP IT SEDUCTIVE, BUT NOT VULGAR

By Michael Molloy



First and foremost, I have a simple rule of thumb when it comes to composing a love scene for any of my works: keep it seductive, but not vulgar. Unless you’re writing erotica (count me out on this one, please), there is no need to get too graphic with your readers. C’mon, they get it.

Think of a glass of fine merlot wine. Now you could gulp it all down in one fell swoop. I suppose if you want to experience a quick buzz that would be the way to go. But, if you’re like me, you want to take one little sip at a time and allow the nectar of the vine to slowly swish around your teeth and gums before swallowing it. That is the perfect analogy I can come up with when it comes to the ideal love scene. Give your readers small increments leading up to the point of romantic rapture. In other words, don’t hit the readers over their heads with a sledge hammer.

It’s best to build up to the sensuous moment. Yeah, this is coming from a guy. But, hey, your audience is female and this is what most women love to read when they fantasize their own ideal moment of intimacy. Take my latest project, “The Diamond Man”. My main characters, Jim and Anne, have a delightful picnic together in a park, whereby they take turns reciting romantic poetry while indulging on wine, cheese, and fruit, go to a boutique where Jim playfully pulls the brim of a summer hat over Anne’s eyes when she takes too long to decide upon purchasing it, and share coffee at Anne’s apartment before leading up to their heated kiss and eventual lovemaking scene in her bedroom. All of these elements are layers pointing towards the ultimate steamy moment. In my opinion, that is the best way.

Another thing, please refrain from mentioning unnecessary specifics in your intimate encounters. Give the illusion of what’s happening. If you want to embellish it, how about mentioning satin sheets, lit scented candles, or rose petals across the pillows? Allow the reader to envision herself what’s happening. For example, in the aforementioned passionate encounter between Jim and Anne, I write, “…and she absorbed his masculinity.” There, that’s all you have to do. Let the reader imagine the rest. One thing you will never see me use in any story I write is the use of the P word and the V word. Unless it relates to a heinous crime in a suspense or mystery novel, there’s no need for it. Leave it out. Just be suggestive. Your audience is too savvy and intelligent for the need to become edgy.

There’s also nothing wrong by injecting a little humor in your love scene. Let’s go back to that encounter between Jim and Anne in her bedroom. After their passionate exchange and discussion about a few topics, Jim comments on a birthmark Anne has below her left shoulder. He explains that his ex-wife has one, too. “It’s right next to her…uh…right next to her…” Jim deliberately doesn’t complete the sentence, causing Anne to at first gasp. But then she smiles at the reference. Again, the reader knows what you’re implying.



Michael Molloy is a big fan of authors Stephen King, Tom Clancy and Frederick Forysth. He didn’t get the writing bug until about 12 years ago. Michael was influenced greatly by an English teacher he had during his years at Stuyvesant High School -- the late Frank McCourt (ANGELA’S ASHES). In 2009, he self-published his novel, DEUTERONOMY: THE NEW TEN COMMANDMENTS. He is currently shopping around a romance novel, THE DIAMOND MAN and a thriller called, SADISTIC PATTERN. Michael has also written a screenplay, “Simon Rockets”, which got as far as talks with Hollywood producer Beau Carson (“The Tempest”). To learn more about him, visit him at http://www.authormichaeljmolloy.com/.

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