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Another great blogpost here by curl4ever. (Not all of whose own stories have safe sex! but I'm sure he will write some more hot ones for us soon - pretty please?)
Naoko has been encouraging you to explore your writing talents. I thought I would provide some resources I have found helpful, culminating with a review of one of my favorite stories, Six Characters in Search of Erotica by glynndah.
Literotica has a great reference page of general resources for erotica writers here. Another delightful source of advice, especially if you like this blog, is Naoko's other blog. It's a How To Write blog; with posts about broad and gentle issues such as how to use wine to suggest character, as well as more detailed issues such as how to sweetly and sexily use a semicolon. (Hmm. I wonder if that semicolon in my last sentence was correct. Better check it out!) It has very enjoyable posts about where to publish your sexy stories and how to set up a profile to protect your identity.
Here are four particularly good Literotica contributions that have a significant focus on how to develop good characters.
First, by TheEarl is The 10 Commandments, a well-constructed guide to writing erotica in general. Item 2 describes plot as the "reason your characters are having sex." Matching the plot to the characters and the characters to the plot helps make everything work. Item 3 is "Put something of yourself into your characters." Using personality traits of real people (yourself or others) helps you write concretely AND helps your readers identify with your characters. Item 4 recommends avoiding stereotypes. Item 5 brings home an important point about how to convey the description of your characters. He recommends avoiding an overly-detailed laundry list, but instead generally painting the qualities you want your character to have, so the reader can fill in their own, more powerful visualization of that character. His item 9 reminds you to make the dialogue match the characters. More on this point coming up.
Second, also by TheEarl, is a contribution I found very recently, Writing Quality Sex Scenes. (This is an area where I personally need much improvement, so I hope to put some of these ideas into practice for future stories. Uh, safely of course, Curl! (wink) - the Editor) TheEarl re-emphasizes making sure your characters have a reason to be having sex. When readers identify with the motivations of your characters, they are drawn more deeply into your story. My favorite point in this article, however, is to avoid a play-by-play description of the mechanics of the sex in favor of things that will affect your reader more deeply. TheEarl puts it this way: "People don't want to hear what your character is doing, they want to hear what it feels like," and: "People react better to realistic characters and the best way of making your characters real is by telling us what they're thinking." (emphasis mine).
Next, I have two articles that discuss how your characters interact with the dialogue you write for them. How To Make Characters Talk, by Whispersecret is the first Literotica contribution I ever put on my Favorites page. Let The Characters Do The Talking by ronde is a new Favorite. In both these articles, the authors give superb examples of how you can convey a much more intense picture of your characters through their dialogue than through any mere descriptions. One example from Whispersecret: "I was totally blown away. Her outfit was like so yesterday. I mean, this is the new millennium, you know." Versus: "I'm telling you, everyone who is anyone was talking about it. How could she possibly have worn that outdated ensemble? It was positively passe." Versus: "Huh, sugar, I can't tell you how silly she looked. Like she raided her grandma's attic!". Ronde gives this example: “I should never make public such a demonstration of my own ineptitude.” Versus: “I wouldn’t ever tell anybody I made such a stupid mistake.” Versus: “Ain’t nobody ever gonna hear I done that shit.”
Finally, the payoff for your patience. One of my absolute favorite stories of all time is by the exceptional Literotica author glynndah: Six Characters in Search of Erotica. She incorporates all of the above ideas into a wickedly humorous object lesson. Each character starts out as a classic erotica stereotype, such as a cougar or a young stud. They bounce around and interact with each other, but before the author can pull things together into a story, the characters scatter wildly into unexpected directions. The story is a delightful self-satire of the process that so many of us aspiring erotica writers go through. The characters do not hesitate to fire hilarious barbs at the author for her use of "a bit of comic relief between sex scenes", or "filler until the author can think of a better simile."