Friday, November 5, 2010
Correction: I've been thinking a lot lately about weaving a strong sexual component into a paranormal romance.
In addition to odd questions I've had to consider (i.e., would a 400-year-old Irish farmer-turned-vampire be circumcised, and do I really need to address that?), I've had to think about the structure of my manuscript.
--How early in the story does the deed first occur? From studying other PNRs, I've determined the sweet spot to be between pages 50-60. Earlier, and they look slutty. Later, and...well, later doesn't seem to be an option.
--How to finesse that first sexual encounter in a way that works with the story, feels natural to the story, and only further complicates the 300 pages that follow.
--How to weave an ongoing physical relationship in with the building romantic, emotional journey the characters are taking, without detracting from it or overshadowing it?
--How to show and phrase things so that the story doesn't cross that fine line and go from being PNR to becoming EroRom--and you know exactly what I mean. Anyone who's stuck with the entire Anita Blake series as I have knows.
So, here's today's question for those of you who read paranormal romance and/or erotic romance: what makes a paranormal sex scene hot but not slutty? What lines do you draw in terms of what you like to read versus what goes over the line? Who does it well?