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We draw imaginary lines in our personal lives all of the time. Simple things like what types of movies we watch or TV programs, what to wear and just how low cut. LOL All of this got me to thinking about just where we should draw the line in what we write overall within the erotic romance genre.
It would seem that more and more, certain subject matters are becoming less and less taboo. It wasn’t that long ago, maybe four, that M/M was considered to be a taboo genre. But look at it now! It has been well accepted within the almost all female erotic romance reading community.
There was a time in which BDSM was only whispered about. Now? Even I have a scene or two here and there with handcuffs and a spanking. LOL I even have one book in which I use wax play. It never ceases to amaze me just how sexy all of this comes across when I write it, too. If a guy had you tied up in bed and was coming at you with a candle and tilted it so the wax would drip on your nipple, would you think that was sexy? In my real life, I just can’t see that happening in any way that I would consider sexy. But when I see it all written down? WOW! Just WOW! Now I’ve had a paraffin bath for my hands and that feels pretty good. But the temperature is a certain level, etc., and I’m in control. And as we all know, it’s that lack of control that makes the difference. But still…my nipples? Hmmm…
Menage is all the rage. I’ve got one of those I’m working on—IF I can ever finish it. I have trouble writing ménage as strictly romance, however. I’m pretty vanilla—well, I like a little chocolate syrup and a few nuts, too—LOL—but I don’t see the romance in ménage at all. I’m more of a one-man-one-woman kind of gal. But I have read a ménage or two that came close to showing me a loving relationship. I think my friend Ava Rose Johnson did a good job with her books. For me, though, ménage fits much better in the paranormal realms, maybe sci-fi, too. But that’s just me.
Publishers usually list what they DON’T want to see in a submission. And I must say I agree with their list. However, there are publishers out there that will publish anything. We’ve all seen that. No bestiality has always been a rule with legitimate publishers, but lately I’m seeing publishers extending that warning to include no sex with a shifter while in shifted (animal) form. That leads me to believe that there are enough authors out there who are writing this that the warnings have started showing up. I love shifters. But to me sex with a shifted form would be a major ick factor.
Today that has me thinking about just where I believe the line is sometimes crossed and places we don’t need to go. I don’t like to see blood drawn in BDSM books. That bothers me. I don’t like to read erotic romance books in which children are introduced as characters. And I’m not talking about children being a part of the actual story line other than being someone’s children, but just being in the story. If a character has children, and the romance starts, I like to see the kids packed off to grandma’s. LOL A sexy relationship with kids underfoot just loses its sexual tension for me. Now that doesn’t mean it can’t be done or isn’t being done. Just means I haven’t read one in which it works and it’s not good for me. So personally I won’t write a book with children in it—unless it’s NOT erotic romance—and very probably not in mainstream romance either.
I also have a bit of a problem with polyamory. Or however that’s spelled, LOL. And it’s not the sex part of it all. Nope. It’s the way the relationship is presented. One man—two or three women. And these women get along???? No way. Two women in the same house???? There would be blood on the floor. Now I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that this does and has worked for a very long time in real life and we see these men and women on TV all of the time.
Yep, we do. And it’s usually when the FBI has gone in and rescued a bunch of them. OR it’s on a Lifetime movie. To me? That’s a “control” situation. A cult. Brainwashing. The women are born into a situation in which they had no choice or are lured into a situation where they had no real understanding of what they were getting into. And I have heard of polyamorous relationships that work just fine through a couple of blogs. But I do believe those are the exceptions and not the rule at all. So I don’t enjoy reading that particular subject matter.
What about the “ick” factors in acceptable scenes? Anal without lube? Anal and then vaginal sex with no clean up in between? Those are two of mine for sure. Authors AND EDITORS need to pay attention to specifics. What do you think of two brothers involved in a ménage? Or fisting? Tongues in places you generally wouldn’t think about putting them?
Where do YOU draw the line? What’s your personal ICK factor? What sexual relationship or act do you feel is just not for you? Has anything in the erotic romance/erotica genre NOT been explored that you’d like to see written about?
Today I'm sharing Tina Donahue's book trailer from her sinfully good IN HIS ARMS. The music, the imagery...everything is just so amazing. Make sure you stop by Tina's website and check out all her books. She's just too talented and you can't bypass her books for sure! http://tinadonahue.com