Expert publishing blog opinions are solely those of the blogger and not necessarily endorsed by DBW.
Like anybody else launching a writing career, I was not very particular about what I wrote as long as I got paid for it. That is why I wrote half a dozen sex novels. They were a great way to learn fictional skills, they paid well, the publisher never asked for editorial fixes, and as long as I did not cross certain lines of taste the publisher would accept everything I produced. In those days that line was No Explicit Body Parts, No Clinical Terms for Intercourse, and No Dirty Words. That’s why sex novels in those days were weak tea compared to the hot erotica in even the average romance published today. I was so good at writing sex scenes that I was occasionally asked by the publisher to “sex up” a drab and unimaginative scene written by another author.
For that reason, I feel confident that it will be no loss for me to pass up the opportunity to attend the Creative Writing in the 21st Century conference this coming weekend in Toronto, where one of the presentations is entitled “He put his what, where? Or: How to teach students to write plausible sex scenes, prevent them from winning the Bad Sex Fiction Award, while not suffering from fear, alarm, dread, or embarrassment in the process.”.
Quill & Quire interviewed the pair (both female) of creative writing teachers conducting the course, and you will find the Q&A candid and refreshingly funny.
For instance, asked what inspired them to broach the delicate topic of scx scenes in their class, they replied “I think the trigger for us was the contest for the worst sex scene. There are so many writers that I admire who write terrible sex scenes. A lot of them, even if they’re not violent or offensive, are just really boring: he put his thing there, and she stroked this, he moaned, and he said, ‘Oh baby, baby.’”
For the complete interview click on Creative writing Q&A: Nicole Markotic on the delicate art of teaching sex scenes.
And if you don’t remember what contest they’re talking about, read Bad Sex Award Is Coming. Oh God Oh God Yes Yes Yes It’s Coming!