Today I came across a synopsis for a book in the werewolf erotica genre. Is it just me, or does the thought of such evoke a sense of gross-ness? Can’t imagine what it must be like to write those love scenes; the foreplay alone must be challenging. I don’t see how you can romanticize hairy, doggy-style action.
Along those same lines, it took a long time for me to accept the idea that vampires could have sex. Not that it bothered me, mind you; on the contrary, vampires are very sexy creatures so I wanted to find a means to explore their sexual nature in a way that didn’t involve feeding. I’ve always been of the opinion that a vampire’s sexual pleasure is derived from feeding, nothing else. Never mind that we as writers have the power to make anything happen in our characters’ universe. I don’t play God with mine. I didn’t want to make it happen without good reason, and without due consideration. I did a lot of research, and practicially speaking (I know we’re dealing with fantasy here), I couldn’t accept that the undead could–you know–get it on.
But I wanted them to. I needed it to be possible in order to move the plot forward; and my protagonist giving in to that sexual need was an essential part of the character arc he must follow. At least as I saw it. So I quit thinking scientificially. I quit trying to rationalize how, if vampires have no blood of their own and no heartbeat…oh, you get the idea. I still haven’t figured it out, but I quit trying to explain it.
I wrote several vampire-on-vampire (bad pun I know), sex scenes, but what I mean to illustrate is that no mortals were involved. Strictly vampires. I let the characters do and feel everything they’d been supressing, and it turned out beautifully.
Now, here is the irony: after I completed the manuscript with these steamy scenes interwoven seamlessly into the storyline and, essential to the plot as I saw it, the publisher decided the book would be best suited for YA as opposed to classic horror/fantasy. So, there went my sex (or love for you romantics who want it to sound more meaningful) scenes, over which I’d agonized for such a long time. The original manuscript still exists, and I hope to release it as an extended version of the story some day. But a majority of my audience will see the PG version.
The sex is only hinted at now, the scenes glossed over, the bound wrists and ripping of thick Medieval brocaded curtains and passionate exchange of blood a thing of the past.
Oh well. The life of a writer is never an easy one.