Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Cinderella sex

I just finished a first draft. I'm proud, not because it's beautiful writing. Not yet. It's rough and clunky. But because I managed to ignore the voices. You know, the chattering critics in your head that sneer and titter and shake their heads. I got the bones down, the actual storyline that hovers around the words.

I've been struggling with the fine points of sex writing. It is hard to write about actual fucking, because you want to keep present, very visceral, very sexy, very real. But a litany of physical action doesn't work, and I tend to lose track of punctuation when it gets to - this is the thing: how do you describe an orgasm? It's such a wordless experience. Mindless, almost. I don't like swerving into metaphor, and unless you're writing first person it's hard to describe what a person feels when they're coming. Something like -


Might be the most accurate description. But then, I don't think I'd get away with it...


Gordon Islander said...

Hi Nikki
Then why not write it in the third person? (but be careful of the cliches or we'll all get very b...o...r...e...d!)
Gordon Islander

Nikki said...

Hi Gordon,

you mean first person? Ach, I always write in first person. I love it, but it's limiting when it comes to plotting. Besides, I need the exercise of third person stories.

This is the trouble with writing - one is never satisfied. If I feel I'm good at a certain thing, I drop it instantly and move on to the next challenge...

Tilly said...

I quite like writing orgasms at the moment, but then, I tried to find an example and, in were-book, I think every time anyone has an orgasm I am nearly alwasy in someones poitn of view.

Plus the person coming is often also turning into a WOLFATTHESAMETIMEOMG! Which helps.

Gordon Islander said...

No, I really meant third person (or the 'God view' as it's sometimes known)as this gives much more scope than just the sound effects! The other way (which is perhaps cheating a bit) is to go into a sort of 'dream' mode eg "at that moment I felt as though the great god Pan was......" etc - then just let your imagination and libido run wild! (I'm contributing to an anthology at the moment entitled 'Sleeping With the Gods' and having great fun with this!)

Miss Syl said...

I've read this post four times now and for some reason keep not commenting.

I meant to tell you congratulations. First draft completion feels so good.

And oh, also to tell you that you couldn't hear your inner critics because just as you started writing, I kidnapped them and held them at gunpoint and put that um...duct tape stuff over their mouths to keep their filthy traps shut. That strange, repetetive yelping you heard when you finished was actually them all crying out in pain as went down the line and ripped the tape off. :-P

Hm, I guess I'm in some kind of violent mood tonight. My Americanness is showing, heh heh.

Nikki said...

Miss Syl, I owe you one ; )

Anastasia said...

I'm with you on the orgasm, it's hard, but sometimes I think it's hard when thoughts whirl around (the chattering critics). I try to avoid the word 'waves', because that's well... no comment on that. An orgasm is pure, and raw all at once.

chris skilbeck said...

Hi Nikki,

I've been looking at your blog every few days since I saw your name on ERWA - always nice to see erotica in British English from a Brit cultural point of view.

Writing orgasms is well tricky, as you said they're a wordless experience. BUT you can describe what someone else looks like or sounds like while they come, and you can tell what was the last coherent thought before you/they come, or the uncontrolled images/memories/frustrations that race through someone's mind at the 'point of no return'

And you can describe what one person's orgasm feels like to their partner - how it feels to a woman when a man comes in any of the various places that he might, or how it feels to a man when a woman comes - the excitement of witnessing a partner's orgasm is as good as one's own to a lot of people.

I guess it comes (sorry) down to the old advice of 'show, don't tell' - write what can be written about, let the reader feel their own response to it.

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Dave said...

I found the sex scenes in my book quite easy to write as they were describing totally inept sex. I think if I had to write a more coventional scene like they have in proper books, I'd be in trouble.