Turning Tricks: Writing Sex in M/M Erotic Romance
by Jack L. Pyke
I just want say a huge thanks to the Blogger Girls for hosting me today and agreeing to review Broken Ink and run the paperback giveaway. Thank you!
Hm. Sex in M/M erotic romance….
I didn’t pick up my first erotic romance until roughly four years ago. Up until that point, I was James Herbert and Shaun then something needs to seriously go through and through, getting my kicks from the likes of Stephen King’s It and how clowns handout balloons with a whispered “Everything floats down here.”
In my (hopeless) defence, I simply wasn’t aware of the M/M genre at all. I kick myself at times because I know I become glued to my own comfort zones and rarely move outside of them. The first time I did read M/M, it was edits for a publishing company, and I’ve never looked back since. Even my horror dependency has been overridden, and that — that’s scary!
As with BDSM and going into editing, I always wandered how sex could be a main device to sell a work. There’s only so many positions and so many places that you can have sex, so repetition alone with the logistics would surely edge on boredom eventually, right?
I love being made to eat my own words. After four years of coming into contact with so many different styles and author voices, I can willingly hold my hands up and say I still love every potential sex scene in M/M erotic romance; I still get a thrill out of reading it, whether it’s fade to black or an all and all need to go in balls deep.
I think it comes down to not holding on too tightly to a How-To guide. Every writer has their own style and creativity, and sometimes the dos and don’ts can distract. Linguistics taught me one valuable lesson: don’t box writing into phrases such as the “mechanics of writing.” There is nothing mechanical about writing fiction, certainly not within a sex scene (unless it’s steampunk, then that’s a different bucket of nuts and shiny new bits!). But creative writing gets the “creative” tag for a reason, as it’s the author’s ability to work language in a creative way that becomes important. It’s also what makes reading and writing sex such a thrill for me: how an author can add something new or creative to the whole scene. If at any time it’s getting boring for an author (and ultimately, the reader), something needs a decent shake up, a change of direction, but not necessarily a change of sex position.
Henry James hit writing on the nail for me, and this quote works well for me with sex in fiction too:
“What is character but the determination of incident? What is incident but the illustration of character?”
It reminds me of cause and effect in many ways, why one character will do one thing and what reaction will be gained when he does it, and what that says exactly about both characters. Within sex scenes, cause and effect can be used to stop a sex scene from going flat. If only one character is seen to act without describing what his action causes to both himself and his partner, reader interactivity can utterly flat-line because they’re only seeing one side of the story. Or, if you go to the other extreme and only portray constant cause: Tim did this, and Joe did, bypassing all of the sense and sensation to the actions, then something needs to seriously go, and mostly because you’re giving the reader tennis-neck strain with all the “He did that, He did that” action! I’ve loved scrapping whole scenes because gut instinct said they didn’t feel right, and once I’ve stepped away to look at why, it’s mostly because the sex is doing nothing to further characterisation and plot.
So for me, writing a sex scene is about character working both plot and body, and using those to depict character. If he’s touching, he’s touching for a reason, even if it’s just a need to be close to a lover after rough day’s work, and the lover in turn then either holds him back or pushes him away, depending on what plot and character need to portray in that moment.
Each time I think I’ve read everything and there’s a change that repetition might creep in, something new will come along that completely obliterates any doubts, and it leaves me loving every moment of editing and writing.
About Broken Ink
Carrying a tattoo on your skin no longer just comes with a risk of infection. Get the composition right, you have the latest mind-control drug on the market. It’s the sex-traders’ dream, or worst nightmare, depending on the concentrated dose of the ink—and just who’s wearing it.
For Kiyen, the ink means he’s able to strip raw the minds of the best and worst of society. He’s one of MI7’s top killers and never more driven to select and take down a target. For Falen, the ink has ensured he’s spent his early years as a willing sex slave and low-grade empath. Hiding out in a small town and trying to bury the needs running through his body, Fal’s hoping to stay under the radar of MI7 and their specialist killers. But the ink itself has a mind of its own, wanting to ignite the natural dynamics driving a Dom and sub, so when Kiyen is forced into Fal’s small world, prejudice battles a pure need to touch. Only problem is: Kiyen’s on the run, and in a world where thought can be the worst crime of all, Fal’s in for a fight for his sanity to find out just what it is that’s making a young killer run for his life.
About Jack L. Pyke
Jack blames her dark writing influences on living close to one of England’s finest forests. Having grown up hearing a history of kidnappings, murders, strange sightings, and sexual exploits her neck of the woods is renowned for, Jack takes that into her writing, having also learned that human coping strategies for intense situations can sometimes make the best of people have disastrously bad moments. Redeeming those flaws is Jack’s drive, and if that drive just happens to lead to sexual tension between two or more guys in a D/s relationship, Jack’s the first to let nature take its course.
Jack has graciously offered up a paperback copy of Broken Ink to one lucky winner!! The giveaway starts now and ends December 14, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. To enter, just click the link below!
Please be aware that the only way to enter the giveaway is to click the Rafflecopter link above. Any comments on this post will not count towards entering the giveaway, except to verify your Rafflecopter entry.
Don’t forget to check out JustJen’s review of Broken Ink to see what she thought of it!