Let's Write About Sex, Baby! Ain't it Awkward?


I love sex. Sex is sacred and sexuality is an endlessly fascinating subject. What drives us to our turn ons, our attractions, and how those change over time are mysteries that I’ve determined can never fully be solved. So needless, to say, when it comes to writing about sexuality and going into the details of a sex scene, I treat that with reverence because truth be told, writing about sex intimidates the hell out of me. 

One might think I’m an exhibitionist from the sex scenes I write, but the truth is I’m very shy. My partner would tell you that I’m very reticent when it comes to talking about sex. So, it is really hard for me to write those intimate scenes in detail. I rewrite those the most often and those few pages take me the most time. But when I finally get those scenes down in a way that I believe that the sex is hot and the writing is beautiful, it is the best feeling ever. In “Ella Bandita and the Wanderer,” there are only 2 sex scenes and only 1 that goes into fine detail. It took me forever to get that scene to where I liked it, but I take the most pride in those several pages out of almost 300, because those were the most terrifying to write.

I’m working on the second novel in the Ella Bandita stories, and this one is much heavier on the sex scenes than the one that came before it. So that intimidation is with me all the time, as well as that challenge that I have to meet over and over again.

Given that I write erotic scenes in my novels, how odd is it that I don’t find most erotica erotic? Strangely enough, it may be because more often than not, the only point of the story is sex. But there’s no story of the characters and the mating dance between them. Without the psychological foreplay their motivations, demons, pain, willingness, obsession, reluctance, resistance, what they hope for, what they are willing to risk, how can there be anything at stake for the characters in a sex scene that happens? I find the sex scenes of most erotic short stories tedious, even silly more often than not. There’s nothing at stake for me between two imaginary friends that on the pages simply to get laid and for the reader to play the role of voyeur in a peep show.

I mean no disrespect to the writers and readers of these short and sweet erotic short stories. Erotica has its fans. But without a story before, during, and after the sex scene, I just can’t get into it.

Casanova allegedly said that the most satisfying part of a seduction for him was walking up the stairs to the lady’s bedroom. I think it’s interesting that history’s most legendary seducer said that. It wasn’t the act of sex that had his blood pumping. It was the anticipation of sex.

So if this was the opinion of the most celebrated rogue of all time, I ask myself how can a sex scene be truly erotic without any kind of story leading up to it?

As I said before, all this is on my mind because I’m working on the second novel in the Ella Bandita stories and there are many sex scenes. Happy reading everybody - that is when the time comes to release the 2nd novel. ;)