A Frank Talk About Sex…

Scenes, that is. As fans of romance, many of the books we read often have scenes of intimacy between the couple in the story. In some books the door closes before the scene gets intense and leaves what follows to our imagination, although usually not before building some fine sexual tension.

In other books we get an intimate look at what’s happening, whether humorous, serious, dangerous or downright wild.

So let’s talk about those sex and/or love scenes, the two being distinct creatures in my book(s) (both literally and figuratively). Let’s discuss what you like and what you don’t like.

Paranormal Romance SINS OF THE FLESH by Caridad PineiroAnd while we’re at it, let’s talk about covers and what we like to see on them in terms of sex. Are some too embarrassing/suggestive/misleading?

I had a number of people tell me they were put off by the very obvious suggestion on the cover of my paranormal romance SINS OF THE FLESH that Mick was going somewhere very intimate with Caterina. The cover was just too. . .brazen might be the word to describe what’s going on.

Any thoughts? Are there things that you find a distinct turn off? Are there certain words that turn you off? Like d**k or c**k or f**k (just in case you find those offensive).

Are the love scenes in our romance novels becoming just sex scenes and lacking the emotion to make them truly memorable?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on all of the above and more on this very Wicked Wednesday.

24 thoughts on “A Frank Talk About Sex…”

  1. I am curious to read others respond to this topic-it can be very controversial.
    For me, sex scenes HAVE to have some emotional connection. Nothing turns me off faster than just plain f***king.
    There is also the word c**t that some writers use for the female –*GAG* I don’t like it. Don’t know why, just something that makes me slightly wince and skim over when I find it in a book.
    Don’t get me wrong–down and dirty, sweaty sex? GIMME—just don’t leave out the emotional part, the part that connects the two stronger than their bodies.
    As far as covers–leave me a little bit of imagination…I LOVED your cover, BTW, Caridad of Sins of the Flesh…
    I like to have the faces of the men blurred out a bit—so I can use my own imagination on how they look in the face. But a nice hot bod with the smokin’ sex…er, six pack? Yeah…I’m all for that. 😆 I admit, a cover draws me in–but I need plot, depth, emotions, and action OUTside the bedroom too.

  2. The sex scenes are the hardest for me to write, honestly. One has to write more than basics, but be different. I try to make it more about emotion. I also leave it up to the characters and their personalities. They run the show.

    I hate sex filler scenes. You don’t see it often, but sometimes 3 or 4 in a book is too much.

    As for covers, I was not offended by yours. I prefer my covers to be suble. Sometimes you see these covers that just don’t match the book. I wish all publishers followed what Wild Rose does, sends a questionaire to the author for detailed input.

  3. That’s nice to know. I don’t like the C**T word or p***Y all that much. I find them derogatory toward women, but some others don’t.

    Thanks for sharing! 😉

  4. I think this cover is hot!!! It doesn’t show too much but definitely insinuates what is on his mind *wink* I am not put off by much when it comes to reading. Some things seem fake or forced and that bugs me but otherwise words don’t really bother me at all 😉

  5. Thanks so much, Monica.

    Deciding how much sex in a book is a difficult choice. If you’re writing to get published, it definitely involves seeing what is being published so that you’re not too far out of the box for the publisher you want to target.

    If it’s a romance, there definitely has to be that emotional connection between the characters and also between the characters and the readers. For erotica, not so much, IMHO.

    Thanks for dropping by! 😀

  6. I am happy that one of my writer friends shared this on her FB today!

    I have been in the process of editing and chopping my first big wip. I know I have toooo many sex scenes. I couldn’t keep my characters out of bed! I had a difficult time nailing a genre becuase the language is more than “Spicy”! 😉
    I do have a great premise and good characters that evolve. I was told by one writing instructor/author that I used words that women didn’t say or think about themselves. But I do — so I am sure I can’t be the only one. Nor am I the only one who wishes there were more sex scenes in a book? I look forward to reading your books and I have book marked your blog!

  7. As you know I loved Sins of the Flesh. While the cover was eye catching, it wasn’t over-the-top to me.

    As for the scenes, I don’t mind a few of them, I don’t even mind them being on the spicy side, I do mind them on every other page or just to fill the pages. What is more important is the emotions, the connection that lead up to that moment and what happens afterwards.

    Great post and loving the feedback you are getting on the subject.

  8. Thank you, Kaye. I do find myself pulling back sometime, because it’s important for me that the physical act of put Tab A in Part B, as Irene called it, not overwhelm the emotion of what’s happening. The wonder in that first touch. The race of the heartbeat caused by expectation and fear and hope and love and all those things that make the act so very special.

    1. I love the first touch—the butterflies, the anticipation, the shivers, the EVERYthing that goes with it. Sometimes, the build-up is better than the insert tab A into slot B….LOL. You capture that very well in Sins of the Flesh, Caridad!

  9. What a truly fantastic topic!

    I love the cover for Sins. So I may not be the best person to ask!

    I can only tell you from my own experience of writing sexy scenes. But I don’t go overboard, like some books that are ‘erotic’ in nature. I keep the relationship between h/h character driven while exploring the emotional connection at all times.

    There are books that are too over the top for me too. I hate words like Pu**y
    I think it is in bad taste to refer to a woman’s body part in that way. Yet I’ve been told to ‘put the word(s) in my story’ — because that’s what is expected. Ugh! I always try to get around using those words and concentrate on the emotions going on between h/h in the scene.

    As for the way Caridad handles it– I love her sexy scenes. She has the right balance.

  10. We sometimes get a say, but not always. I once had a cover that I thought would be really misleading (it looked like a YA book) and after discussions with the publisher, they agreed and gave me a fabulous cover.

  11. I don’t need a sex manual.
    I want to know what happens to lead up to a love scene, but I do not need to know how tab B gets into slot A. I do not read books for the sex.

  12. I’m not a fan of corny, either. I don’t see it that often, although I am reading a book right now that borders on it. It’s pulling me out of my enjoyment of the story.

  13. I think your cover is pretty, but I wouldn’t carry it to the doctor’s office with me. 🙂

    Like Karin, I don’t care for sex for the sake of sex in books. I like to feel the emotional connection between
    the hero and heroine and have the scene mean something to the story.

    I’d rather read a story with frank talk than euphemisms. If a scene makes me roll my eyes or I’m embarrassed for the hero or heroine for saying something corny, I’ll skip the rest of the scene.

  14. I too am interested in this conversation. I’ve written the gamut of sex scenes, closed door, mild, spicy, all depending on the story and where the characters take me. Luckily, there is a market for all those types.

    I’m just not sure I want my family reading the spicy stuff though. 🙂

  15. I get tired of sex scenes used as filler. There are some authors who throw in a sex scene (or two or three or…) that have VERY little to do with the story line. I find that I start skipping those pages and get back to the story. When that happens too many times, I stop buying that author’s books. I may still read them, but only if I find them at a book exchange. When I pay money for a book I want the story.

    1. Your welcome and I hear you I always wonder how the people responsible for the covers come up with the ideas do they read the books before they design the covers or does the author get a say in it?

  16. Hi,

    Very interesting post with some good thoughts , I ll be honest I am yet to find a book or cover that has truly made me go ick or turned me off the book all together, I am not agreeing with those who did not like the cover for sins of the flesh I find it interesting and eyecatching it certainly makes me want to know what is happening on the inside of the book.

    Take Care

  17. I love that cover, there are worse ones out there but I’m talking actual erotica and those are pretty much expected to be quite explicit. I used to flinch at the c**t word but as long as it’s not used in a derogatory manner, which it usually isn’t in romance and aside from that I’m quite open minded.

    Joey W Hill and Elizabeth Amber are 2 writers that I know push boundaries with sex scenes and more recently Lexxie Couper’s to be released Horror Erotica that can be controversial on the topic of forced seduction but I love Hill and Amber’s work (tentacles & er-double penises I think I can pretty much read about anything LOL).

    1. LOL! Thanks, Camille. I’m pretty open-minded as well. I have to confess though that when I fall in love with the characters and get wrapped up in their emotions, the scenes mean much more to me.

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