There seems to have been a little flurry on Twitter: people asking for hints and tips about how to write erotica, or how to put together a sex scene that won’t make reviewers point and laugh. I suppose it might be down to the news that EL James has produced another book (I know. The horror the horror, etc.)
But, for those enquiring aspirers and any others, I thought it was worth putting together a few hints and tips anyway. The first one is fairly simple. Don’t be this twat. Bear in mind that you are very, very, very unlikely to make the sort of money Ms James did. If you want to write about sex, write about it because it interests you, because it turns you on, because you have something you want to say about the subject.
The next one is: have a look at a few books on the subject. Write Till You’re Hard is fun and an enjoyable read whether or not you find the advice works for you. There are, after all, a fuckton (almost literally) of erotica sub-genres and Mr New York’s actual fiction may not suit everyone’s taste. However, he clearly understands the first rule of sex writing – to write erotica, you need to be able to get yourself going with your own words.
Another knowledgeable, easy-to-read and comprehensive guide is Ashley Lister’s does-what-it-says-on-the-tin How To Write Erotica and Sex Scenes. This one contains a wide range of examples as well as exercises to try, and the author really knows his stuff when it comes to writing and genre fiction in general.
Of course, I’m not above taking the opportunity to plug my own book designed for people who want to write erotica, either.