Friday, September 23, 2011

I Prefer My Books Nice-n-Steamy

Now, that said, do I love the sex scenes? Hell, yes, I do! Done right, those scenes are absolutely smoking and full of emotion–yes, I said EMOTION. Sex scenes in a romance novel aren’t like reading the assembly instructions for furniture, for chrissakes! (Making sure there was an ample amount of lubrication, he lined up Bolt A with Hole B and inserted it completely until the Nuts at the other end were flush against the opening…)

The characters not only go through a myriad of physical sensations, but emotional ones as well: insecurity, fear, confidence, madness, frustration, elation, revelations, and so many more. And I’ve never read a sex scene that hasn’t altered—either for good or bad—the relationship in some way.

Let’s face it; a couple’s sexual relationship is a HUGE factor in their lives. You can be the Cleavers outside of the bedroom, but if you’re not compatible in the bedroom, you’ll soon turn into the Clintons. And, unless you’ve taken a vow of lifelong abstinence, EVERYONE has sex. So why pretend like it doesn’t happen? Why gloss over what happens between a couple sexually? There are certainly plenty of romances that are of a lighter variety and keep the heated moments “behind closed doors” so to speak. But I hate not knowing what happens in those moments. Was it hot and heavy? Slow and easy? Two minutes or two hours? Did one of them hold back or was it no holds barred?

I once read an interview with one of my all-time favorite authors, Gena Showalter. She told of an early experience she had at one of her book signings, where a woman walked up to the counter and commented with a look of disdain on her face that Gena’s books were those “trashy novels.” Gena’s great response was…

“What’s so trashy about love and monogamy?”

Indeed!  Why are the books categorized as ROMANCE considered by a large majority of the public to be “trashy”? For that matter, why is pornographic material considered to be so taboo? Go into an adult book store (which, for the record, I’m not sure why the word “book” is in there, because I don’t believe I’ve ever actually seen any books in those stores) and the wide variety of items is insane. You can get something as innocently cheeky as penis- or boob-shaped pasta to things you didn’t even have the imagination to conjure up as possibilities in the bedroom. But does that mean that any of it is wrong and shameful? No. It means that there’s a variety of things out there no matter what might float your boat. As long as it’s involving consenting adults there shouldn’t be anything considered wrong with it.

The same goes for what we write or read in our romance novels. Whether the sex is missionary and sweet or upside-down and nasty, it’s a vital part of a relationship.