Love scenes! What makes ’em? What breaks ’em? What’s hot? What’s not? Oh, there are so many ways to answer these questions and there is no doubt that everyone, just like in life, has their own cuppa when it comes to the written sex scene.
For me, I’ve noticed I’m either into a quick start, where the characters jump into bed immediately due to uncontrollable passion, which then evolves into romantic, emotional love making eventually, or I’m into the long, drawn out UST that is resolved with intense, long, endless sex scenes that make your toes curl.
Interestingly, though, I realize that the two books I wanted to talk about today have a bit of both. The relationship in the first book, Calling Pomegranate by Nisha-Anne D’Souza, begins with one of the least sexy, most uncomfortable sex scenes I’ve ever read. The characters are strangers, the sex is obviously not very pleasurable to either, and the motivations for it are boredom and fucked-up-ness on both sides.
After that, via a series of really difficult, and often unpleasant encounters, we see the characters start to develop feelings, almost like tentacles that reach out and entwine with the other person’s soul, leaving them embedded in each other’s lives even when they’d really rather not be. The sex scenes during this portion of the story are beautifully written, with crisp, sexy imagery, but even so I’m not quite there with the relationship, so I’m not entirely breathless from them. (Though I am definitely breathless from the lovely quality of the writing.)
Finally, about halfway through the story, we reach a point where the tentacles–I hasten to add these are metaphorical tentacles, not actual tentacles! it’s not that kind of book!–reaching between them have started to grow stronger, weakening the walls they’ve got up around them to the point that the start to soften entirely, their tender selves showing through the cracks forced open by these binding moments between them.
At that point, the sex becomes a massive mindfuck of intensity. How much will they give up to each other? How much more absorbed can they be before it ceases to be functional, as it is now, and inspiring, as it is now, and becomes a mash of obsession nearly as sick as the careless hurtfulness of their early encounters? And that’s where I’ve left off reading, so I can’t tell you what happens after that.
What I do know is that the sex scenes in the book so far are exquisite in ways I can only tell you to check out for yourself. They were so well done that they kept me reading during some difficult passages in the book when I couldn’t decide if I loathed the characters or only found them tolerable. At this point, I’m glad I carried on. There are sex scenes in this book that will forever inspire and make me think about how to go forward with any given sex scene I’m writing.
I will cop to the fact that there are probably too many sex scenes in this book. And this is me talking, so if I say too many, then there are probably too many. (Because I love sex scenes! Love ’em! So much!) But as I approach each one, sometimes thinking to myself, “Oh, really, another sex scene?” I find myself seduced by it. Each one is so entirely different, separate, and psychologically important to the development of the relationship that I can understand why Ms. D’Souza found it impossible to cut any particular one. I often go into the scene thinking, “I bet this one could’ve been done away with.” And then leave the scene thinking, “But would I have wanted to miss out on that?” And the answer has always been no.
So I bore down and she moaned harder, rising to meet me, faster and breathless and lovely. A slight sheen of sweat was slipping down my back but it was so much hotter inside her and getting wetter all the time.
“Oh god, Sean,” she gasped and I leaned down now, pressed my abdomen hard against hers, ducked my head and shoulders so I could bury my face into her hair, my elbows deep in the mattress and fists curled as her thighs and arms came around me and she took me in as deep as she could, my cock aching, brain delirious, as my balls tightened, pulled hard into the orgasm so close. I tilted my face up and bit the underside of her chin. I got my teeth in, fucked her sharper, and felt it as she trembled on the edge and then came in a tide of cries and convulsions, her cunt wet and crushing along the length of my cock. That was all I needed. I lifted and fitted my mouth over hers, kissed her and felt I was kissed back as I came, hard and endless and devastating, into her.
Excerpt From: Nisha-Anne D’Souza. “Calling Pomegranate.” iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright.
And another brief sample highlighting some of what I love about the writer’s choices with this book:
From under my other arm, I watched the shapes of leaves change on the sunlit ceiling. My mind was empty, vast, but slowly thought was creeping back along the edges. I could smell her, could smell us, the sticky heady aroma of her come and mine, and it was blending in this hideous fantastic way with her perfume and our sweat and my mother’s flowers.
Excerpt From: Nisha-Anne D’Souza. “Calling Pomegranate.” iBooks.
This material may be protected by copyright.
Now, I want to talk about another book, briefly, which some smoking hot m/m sex scenes, because we all know that’s my most favorite cuppa when it comes to reading. For reasons. Which I shall explain to you another day, but for now let’s just go with this gif as reason enough!
In Skylar M. Cates’ debut novel, Exposed, there are some seriously smoking hot sex scenes. I’ve given some thought to what make them so hot, because it’s not UST, that’s for dang sure. I think it is my other kryptonite: serious sexual chemistry that deepens over time to have emotional consequences for both parties. Against their wills. It’s emotional dubcon! Ha! Seriously, though, it kind of is. Neither party wants to fall in love and, yet, they do. And it leads to some seriously wonderful, sexy, wild sex between them.
In the reviews for this book, you’ll sometimes see things like, “Too much sex!” But, uh, no. That’s inaccurate. Not too much sex. Sorry. If you didn’t like the sex in this then…well, I don’t even know, man. I don’t even know.
I should probably talk more about the reasons this sex is so hot. Let’s see–two alpha males, both prone to temper in their own way, but one with a cold temper and the other with a hot head, and you’ve got the recipe for some raging hot sex. Throw in a set up where one of them can’t be honest, and the other is being honest for the first time in years? You’ve got emotional angst to ramp up that hot sex times ten! I can’t recommend it enough for the sex scenes alone. Yowza.
Clearly, I have a thing for casual sex turning into deep emotional sex. That’s what’s come out of this post, huh? Yeah. Okay, well, hopefully you’ll buy these two books and enjoy them as much as I did!
Keira Andrews and Leta Blake write fairy tale inspired m/m erotica and romantica with Ellora’s Cave. Check out Ascending Hearts, available through Ellora’s Cave, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Sony, and others! And also remember to look at Earthly Desires, the first book in the Tempting Tales series, available for purchase at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Ellora’s Cave.
The moment Keira and Leta mentioned to me the idea of writing the ideal paranormal date, my heart leapt. Mostly with joy because I’ll take any opportunity to indulge my old love of Greek mythology. The Hades and Persephone myth has always been my favourite so naturally this is where my imagination went first.
Red Pearls And Black Sand— An Alternate Take
When the kids are put to bed, we go walking through your world of black sand and grey skies, along the low stone wall, passing the wandering shades. Our big shaggy black dog pads beside you, his shadow splitting into three on the shifting sands. Your fingers loop around my wrist in that odd almost delicate way, even now after all these years when the shyness grips you again. And I feel the smile tipping my mouth in the dim silver light.
Sometimes you bring the motorcycle out, all glossy black and gleaming white. But it can’t go on the sand so the grains fuse to form paths of dark glass winding through the soft dunes and distant jagged hills. We ride, my arms around your waist, my cheek against your back, watching the big doggie shape thunder beside us. The dark invisible helmets are back home, forgotten, and the wind streams through my hair, cool against the warmth of you. I think about the day, about the children and work and the world away from here.
Eventually you slow down, you always do and I know it’s because you’ve seen a particular shape off to the side. They wander through the endless night, grieving and searching in this eternal purgatory, but you — you make them human. For the few moments you stop to talk and their faces light up because yours does, because you gather these souls to you and I see how the care shines through you. These people who have touched your heart with their words and their music through all the pain and suffering, these people you collect for the time being. I watch and I chat too and I wonder how long they’ll stay. You never keep them past their times. They move on when they’re ready and you hold me a little tighter each night they leave, that old fear touching you once more.
We ride towards the intersecting rivers, the sky glimmering with hidden light, and you turn the bike in that wide graceful arc you love that skitters the sand up, that makes me grin and the dog bark joyfully. Your hair’s all rumpled like the boyish grin on your lovely homely face as you help me get off the bike. And I slide my hand on the leather of your jacket as I turn my face away to take out the bottle of wine from the bag. Your hand over mine, holding wrist to heart. The doggie butts your leg affectionately and I have to laugh. Look at you, all lord of the manor and ruler of the realm.
No wineglasses, I couldn’t find any. So we sit in the lee of the motorcycle under the ragged trees, and drink from the polka dotted tumblers because your daughter will ever have her own way. And we talk about the day and your work and mine, about the people threading their ways through our world.
I’ve never told you how much I like the sound of your voice, the slightly cool detached edge to it, the warm depth to it and the way it goes all dry and sardonic. The way your mouth curls, so very slim and biteable. You’re not a pretty man or a handsome man. But I love to look at you and you never seem to realise except for those brief moments of embarrassment when you’re chained to the bed and can’t protest.
I love to look at the long lines of your body, the smooth delicious contours and the rough lovely places. You let me touch you, you let me do things to you, and that joy is something that never leaves, the gratitude we share. Maybe we cling too close too often, maybe sometimes it scares me because what will I do without you? It terrifies me and I don’t want to be terrified anymore.
But if it means having you and us for now, well maybe I can be brave. I suppose.
Now your fingers flex for a smoke, I see that telling twitch. So while you talk on, I take your hand and put it on my thigh, trapping it beneath mine. You gave that up for me and the guilt will maybe never leave me even though I tell myself it was all your choice, that you are your own man.
Except you’re not.
You’re my man.
I claim you now without shame, without the hesitation and unwillingness of so long ago. And your hand clasps my thigh as you talk on, gesturing the wineglass at the murky skies. You are claimed, joyfully and secure in the knowledge that you are loved. There is some sadness, I know as I lean my cheek against your shoulder, automatically snarking back at you. The sadness at the heart of every love affair, because we are two in a world of millions alone. And if you continue any story long enough —
But you turn your head and grin at me. The light catches your eyes, wild and deep and green. So beautiful I have to kiss you.
This is your world but it’s mine too. Rulers and lovers. There are myths and stories about us, before and after us. And you remind me playfully how it was me who assaulted you, not the other way around.
Who abducted who is a whole other mystery.
A bottle of red wine, a loop of red pearls. And your green eyes crinkling with so much warmth. Silver binds us, our children bind us, and maybe the old griefs and scabbed over wounds don’t hurt us anymore. But when you look at me sometimes in the implacable night, I know you carry my history. Like I carry yours, a soft weight to hold secure and protect from the vast whirling wind.
Next date night I’ll take you up to my world of eternal sunshine. We’ll ride through the green fields and hot breezes, and let the doggie terrorise the butterflies and small animals under the arching blue skies. And we’ll be secretly glad to escape back here.
Nisha-Anne D’Souza has been writing fiction of varying degrees of eroticism for more than fifteen years now. This has somehow resulted in her rabid love of obscure music and Greek mythology colliding to produce Calling Pomegranate, a modern reinterpretation of the Hades and Persephone myth as an epic tale of sex, grief and Tim Buckley references.