Authors: Do your sex scenes sound the same? #Writetip fix

Writing one sex scene isn’t tough. Writing several per book and making them sound different can be a bit of challenge. Write multiple books and after a while, you might notice that your couples are doing the same thing in the same way. Yep, like real life, your sex scenes have become a tad predictable.

How do you write fresh sex scenes time after time?

Tip no. 1 – make the sex about something other than sex

In many romances the sex is just sex. The author writes the story and then decides she needs to add a sex scene or adds sex scenes to boost the word count. That’s the problem. Don’t do that. If your characters are motivated to have sex for reasons other than sex the scenes will turn out different naturally because emotions direct their behavior.

For example, if your hero is a womanizer and she’s been resistant to his charms, when he finally scores, his sexual behavior will be different than when he realizes what an ass he’s been and that he’s fallen in love with her. Sex can be motivated by insecurity, guilt, jealousy, love, hatred, anger, manipulation, fear, a need to dominate, a need to give up control, the desire to maintain control. Driven by emotion, sexual behavior will vary. What they do in bed is very much affected by what goes on outside of bed.

Before you write a sex scene figure out why your characters are having sex. It should be more than simple lust.

Tip no. 2 – Take it out of the bedroom.

If you put your character in an unusual location, it will force them to contend with obstacles that will affect their sexual behavior. For instance, if they’re having sex in the car in a parking lot, they will have work around a tight space (no pun intended), the steering wheel, the gear shift, and the possibly of being watched/and or getting caught. If they’re in a swimming pool, you have the effects of buoyancy, the effects of cold water on the body, the challenge of performing without drowning.

For more tips, check out Naughty Words for Nice Writers, a thesaurus and sex scene writing guide.

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9 Responses to Authors: Do your sex scenes sound the same? #Writetip fix

  1. I have this issue. Not because it’s not natural, but because I don’t want it to sound the same as others I’ve written. I can vary the location, but the mechanics are often the same. I have to admit though, that thanks to your Naughty Words book, and a couple of other references, I find them a little easier to write.

    • Cara Bristol says:

      Glad you find Naughty Words helpful. The mechanics of sex is pretty basic, so you do have to vary the other elements to make the scenes different.

  2. S.J. Maylee says:

    Great tips! This is something I worry about. I sure like to think I do enough of tip #1 and tip #2 to change things up. But it’s something I need to think about. I’ve kept notes on all my books but I haven’t kept notes regarding my love scenes, only general notes. Eek. I’ve got some homework. 😀

    • Cara Bristol says:

      What kind of notes would you keep? Like plotting notes for each sex scene? Lol. I’m not that organized.

  3. Typically I close the door on my characters at some point after the foreplay. However, the heroine in my current WIP has been adopted by aliens, so when she’s called upon to nurse the (human) hero it seems inevitable for her to be extremely curious about and delighted with the mechanics of sex. I got through their first time by doing what you suggest; the sex is about self-discovery rather than sex. I’m not too sure how I’ll handle the next time, because for this book there simply must be a next time. Problems, problems!

    • Cara Bristol says:

      Actually, one of the tips in Naughty Words is that the foreplay part should be the longest part of the scene. Shutting the door at that point is fine.

  4. Leigh Smith says:

    Great tips. Often I will leave a blank spot in the manuscript to be filled in later as I go on with the rest of the story.

  5. Excellent advice! Thanks!

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