More and more lately, the primary thought when I'm writing a story is...okay, where will they have SEX? I swear, it's driving me crazy but then, I should have known this would happen when I embarked on a career as an erotic romance author. Now, the key word in that job description is ROMANCE. No, I don't write straight erotica, I have romance in my stories. I have to say though, it's becoming harder and harder to strike a happy medium between story and sex.
Everyone has rules it seems. I was never much of a rebel. Always thought, I was the sort who wanted to get along and not make waves so if a publisher wants MORE sex, I try to give it to them. If they want more STORY, I try to do that too. Easy that way, I reckon.
Lately though, this more sex than story thing has been bothering me. I find myself thinking...hmmm, maybe they should have sex right HERE. It has become a planned out thing that I just don't like very much. So I have become a rebel. Can you believe it? Wait! Where's my bike and black leather motorcycle jacket? Several months ago, I decided I just had HAD IT. I was going to write my story and yes, have a STORY. My characters would hop into bed when I wanted them to. Oddly enough, this whole thing began when I sat down with a plot idea thinking I would make it a menage. Mainly because menage sells like gangbusters and who doesn't want to make money, right?
I wrote the first little bit and sent to my critique partners careful to say...this will be a menage. One of my critique partners said...WHY? Your hero is so alpha. I just don't see him sharing.
Funny thing was, that's pretty much how I saw him too. Big, rough, tough and alpha. No, I realized, he wouldn't share the love of his life with another man. So I kind of threw my hands up in the air and gave up. No longer was I going to try to fit a square peg into a round hole, trying to make something work for the sake of sales. I was going to write the story of my heart, adding sex where it needed to be and not forcing things. This philosophy made me feel brand new, whole. I began to feel more like a writer than a machine that cranked out reams of sex scenes. WHEW. I'm reborn!
The product of this effort is in my new shifter series, the first of which came out mid-May. The second comes out July 10 and the third is awaiting edits. So far the reviews and reception from readers has been so positive, I have to wonder if I'm on to something. Writing the story I want and adding meaningful but ultra hot sex seems to work for me. Yes, I think I'll stick to this because, as a writer, I must say I'm happy again and happy is good. Right?
Right now I feel I'm a better writer. Does that mean I'll never write another menage? No. In fact, I'm working on one now but the menage action works with this story where it just didn't with the other. I'm concentrating more these days on the story and letting the sex happen where it's MEANT to happen.