OK, so who else finds writing sex scenes challenging? I'm struggling with one right now in my WIP. Those who know me well probably think I'm kidding because I'm a very open person. I'm not shy when it comes to this topic. But somehow writing about it is different. Or, to be more precise, writing about people doing it is different. How do you describe something so intimate in such a way that perfectly captures the moment? I always feel like I fall short, that maybe it's not sexy enough or fails to convey the couple's passion.
It's strange because the book opens with a horrific rape scene, and I had no problem writing it. In fact, after I finished that passage, I felt a little embarrassed. It was horrible, and I couldn't believe that something so horrible came out of my brain. In fact, a beta reader who read it thought that it had to be real because, well, it seemed so real. She contacted me not once but twice to make sure that what I wrote was indeed fiction. I assured her that I had never been raped and that she didn't have anything to worry about.
But, geez. This sex scene is tough. I've been building up to it in the story and we're at the point where, well, it comes to a head, so to speak. (Sorry!) And I'm worried that I won't be able to do it justice. I need to make sure that I'm showing and not telling. How much is too much? My gut tells me to take readers so far and let their imaginations fill in the rest. But maybe not. Maybe they'll want more.
So I'm asking you. What do you want to read in a sex scene? How graphic do you want it to be? How much is too much? For the purposes of this discussion, lets stick with women's fiction. But, if you're inclined, I'd like to know what you think the limits are when writing young adult, too.
Now, I gotta get back to that sex scene that I've been putting off by doing things like writing this post. Later, people.