Friday, August 31, 2012

Love Scenes VS. Erotica: Pillow Talk

"It is not enough to conquer; one must know how to seduce." ~ Voltaire

In the end the real difference between love scenes (romance stories) and erotica comes down to what the author wants the reader to feel.  In a love scene the goal is emotional satisfaction and too little can be detrimental while too much might seem out of place in the context of the novel.  In erotica the goal is visceral reaction and too little may leave the reader unsatisfied while too much may very well equate porn.  It is important to handle love and sex scenes with great care because as I stated before, everything the characters do and say, and everything they don't do and don't say, is important and has meaning and can either enhance or detract from not only the scene but the entire novel or short story.  When we put the typical elements of love scenes and erotica side by side, the breakdown is as follows:

  • Love scenes are about love; erotica is about sex.
  • Love scenes keep it magical and obscure; erotica tends to be more blunt.
  • Love scenes end with both parties satisfied; erotica may or may not.
  • Both are most successful when creativity and imagination are employed.

Sex scenes and erotic elements are not limited to romance and erotica but that is where they are most commonly seen.  There is nothing wrong with adding a bit of visceral detail to a love scene, nor is there anything wrong with confessions of love during an erotic tryst.  The lines between these literary art forms exist but they are thin and easily crossed.  The most important thing to keep in mind is the feel of your novel and the development of your characters.  


I have included links to the first two installments of this series as well as links to other pages and sites that may be of interest to anyone wishing to explore or hone their skills in the area of romance and eroticism. 

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