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Mercedes's books

Hers To Cherish
Saving His Mate
Claiming His Mate
Taming the Alpha
Tempting His Mate
After Dark
Under His Protection
Dual Desires: A Red Hot and BOOM! Story
The King of Torts
The Husband
Pet Sematary
Eye of the Needle
And Then There Were None
Promise of the Witch-King: The Sellswords, Book II
Thousand Orcs, The
Companions, The: The Sundering, Book I
Night of the Hunter
Night of the Hunter: Companions Codex, I

Mercedes Bleau's favorite books »

Monday, June 23, 2014

Mercy Talks Sex: Writing Realistic Love Scenes

Couple In Bed, Men Sleeping And Woman Lying Disappointed by photostock 10034198
Image courtesy of imagerymajestic /

Sometimes it is nice to read a story where the characters are larger than life. Ok..Ok so it always is, but there is a threshold between realistically enhanced and well…just too much.

We’ve read countless stories where the male hero was hugely endowed, and possessed superhuman endurance. Add to that the trend of female characters that are hypersensitive and more responsive than a hundred boomerangs at an Australian picnic.  Enough is enough. We like our love scenes sensual and sexy, but they are even better if they remain within the realm of attainable. Romance is about the fantasy of perfect love, the beauty of unadulterated union, and endless passion. We sell this dream to the readers. But let’s not do them the disservice of selling them something they can never experience. Read on for four key guidelines of realistic love scenes.

1. Write checks your  heroes can cash.

Its good to build the tension between two characters. Its not so good to build the tension so high that when the deed is actually done it seems a bit anticlimactic. When authors spend an extraordinary amount of time building to sex, and talking about it, it kills a little bit of the wonder of discovery. The characters have talked about how much they want it, and about how good its going to be so much that there is nothing within the realm of the laws of physics that will back up all that talk. So if you write a big check, be prepared for it to be cashed. That is to say, you must deliver. Take your characters beyond physical to metaphysical. Introduce high stimulation play, or some other sort of sense heightening technique, to justify the transcendent experience you’re about to describe. Take your readers beyond the scope of their experience. You can sell larger than life love if you shake the foundation of the reader’s knowledge base.

2. Milk the anticipation.

Try not to make sex the primary story arc. This is romance, so yes it is important, but not more than the honest depiction of human interaction. The journey towards love should feel natural to the reader. We’ve all read those series where after the fourth or fifth sequel its all about the bored sighs and quick page turns to get back to the story line. Some authors fall into the trap of making sex the primary story. This works sometimes, but too much is snooze inducing. Fifty pages of a single sex scene and even the reader feels sore and tired, so it isn’t believable that the characters don’t. Keep the story spicy by building up anticipation in the characters, and then milking it. If two characters aren’t able to connect for some reason,or are interrupted just at the moment of …well you know…then milk that sense of needy thwarted desire. Keep your story sexy without putting too much sex in it. Just the right amount of love combined with a good build up will go a lot farther than the full meat and potatoes.

Top View Of Resting Young Woman by imagerymajestic
Image courtesy of imagerymajestic /

3. Don’t overbeat the batter.

One good love scene is better than five average ones. We’ve all read stories that have gratuitous hanky panky. Even erotic romance stories can go too far in this area. Its important to balance the advance of the storyline with the need for chemical interaction. Desire is a great thing, but it can be quenched with overabundance. So write your stories with the concepts of lean writing foremost in your mind. What is lean writing? There is only one rule. If it doesn’t advance the story or characters in some way, then don’t write it, or take it out.

4. Fight against the cliché.

We’ve all heard the negative spews of those that sip from romance novel hater-ade. They use the ‘c’ word as a reason why romance isn’t real writing. Well don’t feed the fire. Give your stories an original touch. This could mean adding a small twist in the story, or shocking the readers with instant intense passion and then pages of restraint. Any way you tell it it should keep the reader hooked and wanting more. It should do this without having them smirk at the use of old school romance plot mechanisms. An example of this is the “innocent” virgin female lead. She’s untried, inexperienced and immature. She’s also rash, unreasonable, and childish. The great thing about new romance is the emergence of the strong and competent female lead. Let your heroin meet the hero right in the middle. She has her own desires and needs, and she knows what she wants. This should spill over into the love scenes as well. Both partners should be active participants. Both should have an agenda, and the reader should be aware of it. And that’s it.

Happy Writing!!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Mercy Talks Sex: Revving up the Romance!

Beautiful Smile by patrisyu
"Beautiful Smile”  courtesy 
of patrisyu /
Why do romance readers read romance? Why do they choose this genre over any other genre? Why is this one of the most popular types of book on the market? I’ll tell you why! Romance sells. Notice that you didn’t just read the phrase “sex sells”, though it does. The truth about romance stories is that romance sells. That impossible ideal that there is someone out there for everyone is alive and well. Keep hope alive by giving people generous examples of love. You can do that in your stories, look for it in the books you read, or even do it in your own story (that is the story of your life). Keep reading for a few ways that you can rev up the romance!

1. Play up the Peek a Boo!

No, no, no gutter minds. Not that type of peek a boo! Though that might be interesting…. But we’ll save that for another post. You play up the peek a boo by holding a little back, then giving that perfect tidbit at the right time. Give the impression of untapped depths behind the character’s emotions and motives without dumping the full story on the reader. The worst thing for a character is for their actions to seem contrived. You want your readers to accept and believe that the love is building to a boiling point. You do this by giving your readers a peek at what's boiling beneath that complex web of actions and words.  Maybe your alpha male is dying to fall for the lead lady. He wants nothing more than to hold her close for the rest of his life. But he has been hurt in the past, and this causes emotional resistance to the idea of surrendering his heart again. Give us a peek at his inner turmoil, then gloss it over for a while and let the story and characters develop. Then another peek. Then more action. A bigger peek. then Boo!!! Now that’s what I call good romance!.

2. Stoke the fire.

"Romantic Couple Making Love" courtesy 
of imagerymajestic /
Why do romance readers choose to read romance instead of regular erotic? I’ll tell you why. Because romance writers know how to stoke the fire. It is much like that popular pop country song..Its not what you do or what you get when you get there,.. it’s the climb. Take your readers through the pitfalls and triumphs of love. Don’t make your love story into an impossible ideal. We want to believe that this kind of thing could happen in our own lives (right so we want to fantasize that it could at least). You do this by building the fire into a slow blaze and then letting it burn its way through to the surface.

3. Deliver baby!

The most popular authors out there are keeping their place in front of the pack because they can do one thing every time. They deliver. And they deliver well and often. But what does that mean? It means that their readers know what to expect, and they get it with each and every story. This means that though your writing shouldn’t be too predictable, it should contain your own unique formula to success. Pick your mechanism, and stick to it. Keep your audience enticed by meeting their needs, but keep them entertained by showing them the many ways that you can do that. That’s it!

Happy Writing!!!