How To Write A Lovemaking Scene

Most authors are faced with the question: Should I write sex scenes in my novels or short stories? Many factors come into play. What genre is the story? Will characters making love have an impact on the plot? If you decide to try your hand at it, there are some recommendations you should follow:

  1. Don’t force yourself to write a sex scene outside your comfort zone. Your discomfort will show up in your writing, making your words sound awkward.
  2. Stay away from too much technical and anatomical terms when describing the physical act. Readers don’t need to see “so and so inserted blank into blank”. Find a way to describe the characters movements in a way that helps the scene flow better. Readers want to feel the passion, not get a SexEd lesson.
  3. Focus on the emotional and physical elements. However, please stay away from purple prose. You don’t want your sex scenes to sound corny. Write how the characters are feeling and what they’re doing. Different scenarios will, of course, result in different reactions. For instance, if two people are in love, then their movements will be more sensual and caring towards each other. They’re more likely to participate in foreplay and slowly remove clothing, savoring the touch. If its a quickie between two strangers, probably just lust and passion filled with heat but only thinking of the other person as a piece of meat. Just keep in mind that every sex scene won’t be the same. Please describe it through the character’s mood/emotion at that time frame.
  4. Please no head-hopping. Please stick with only one character’s perspective throughout the scene, so the readers can get lost in the moment. It’s best to choose the one who it’ll affect the most afterward.
  5. Consider where the sex scene fits within your plot. Some genres you can get away with none at all. Others, readers will demand a refund if you don’t give enough. So only have your characters make love if it’s logical to the events occurring in the chapter or section of your book. For example, if two students are in the middle of taking a test, then it’s probably not the best time to insert a sex scene in that chapter.
  6. Last but not least, research more tips on how to write a lovemaking/sex scene besides just reading this list. There’s so much useful information out there to be absorbed by writers.

Are there any writers who would like to share tips on how they approach sex scenes in their novels or short stories? Or anyone know of any useful websites to read through that’s helpful on this subject?

Keep smiling,

Yawatta Hosby

14 thoughts on “How To Write A Lovemaking Scene

    • Hey Loutreleaven,

      Good luck with your writing. Whenever I write a love scene, I blush LOL.

      Keep smiling,
      Yawatta

      PS. What’s your next book about?

  1. Thank you for sharing these tips. Lol, writing love scenes is hard. I keep thinking about all the people I know – family, friends, co-workers – who’ll eventually read it and my head almost explodes.

    I definitely agree with you, the best loves scenes I’ve read, regardless of where they fall on the spectrum between innocent and erotica, have always been the ones that fit the characters and the situation. I like love scenes that have emotion behind them, and that effect the plot and have consequences – hopefully emotional, character development type consequences. I’ve read books where it was too mechanical, or just there for no apparent reason, and it made me put the book down.

    I’m no expert by any stretch of the imagination, but I do have a few things that help me out when I’m trying to write one. I have a file where I’ve copied bits and pieces of scenes that I liked, and their source, for quick reference and to help me figure out how I want to write mine. I have a love scene playlist, lol. There’s probably about 50 songs on there and I put it on repeat whenever I’m writing a love scene. I read a wide range of love scenes, all over the spectrum. And lastly, I have an ‘x-file’ that will never, ever, in a billion, trillion years see the light of day, even under threat of my own death. I stepped *way* out of my comfort zone just to figure out where my comfort zone actually is. I had a period of time where I stopped writing for months because I was scared of writing my first love scene. I agonized over it, tried to write it, agonized some more, deleted, re-wrote. Basically, I butchered the poor thing, and by the end of all that it was a complete mess. That inspired me to create my ‘x-file.’ I guess you could say I tried to desensitize myself? Lol, there is some crazy stuff in there, and I still add to it whenever I’m worried about my love scenes. It probabaly sounds a little weird, but honestly, I no longer have any problem writing the word ‘breast.’ 🙂

    I’m going to post a link to this on my blog. 🙂

    • That’s so cool that you listen to music while you write your scenes! I do the same thing. I try to listen to my IPOD, so it doesn’t get on anyone else’s nerves. I’m the type of person who will replay and replay and replay a song over and over and over again until the scene is finished.

      Nah, it’s not weird that you keep an ‘x-file’. I think it’s a very cool idea. All writers should keep notebooks to jot down ideas. Trust me, I have one too LOL. I’ll check out your blog to see what tips you offer.

      Keep smiling,
      Yawatta

  2. Pingback: Kink or No Kink? « paigeaddams

  3. Great tips, Yawatta! I really like tips one and six. I’ve read a few books with love scenes and its very clear that the author(s) were not comfortable writing them…or at least it didn’t show on the page. I personally like to let my characters lead the way. You have some characters who are just more passionate than others and of course their intimate moments will be steamer than some others might be. My debut novel, Something New, was an edgy sweet romance where the characters didn’t go all the way – althought they came close, whereas my next couple of novels coming out this year are more steamier. Inserting a love scene is VERY dependent on the nature of the characters.

    Great post! Let me know when you’re available (or interested) in guest posting on my blog. This would be a great topic…or you could even use this post. Let’s talk!

  4. None of us are Nora Roberts but perhaps if we not only read her words but pay attention to them we can do a better job than even we thought.

    What say we try?
    Is anyone with me?

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