Our topic at the SFF Seven this week is the easiest (or hardest) scene we ever wrote and why.
My writing process is that I sit here at the keyboard, open a new file in WORD, type the book’s working title, my name, the words “Chapter One” and off I go. The entire book is written as one uninterrupted chapter. (Yes, I do insert chapter breaks during the editing process.) I don’t think in terms of scenes. I don’t plot, outline or otherwise break my story into chunks, except on rare occasions. I’m telling a story and it unspools for me from beginning to end.
Usually when I start on a new book, I know the beginning, the ending and a few of the major plot events along the way. Every once in a while I’m really ready to write one of those key plot events ‘out of turn’. The last time I did that was for IVOKK, and I was eager to tell the part about how he and his mate Sandara were going to escape the Khagrish, who are the alien enemy. I ended up writing 7K words on that because it was in my head and ready to go. Then I went back to writing the rest of the novel in order and when I reached that point in the story, I inserted the already written material.
Shrug. Every author has their own process and if it works for them, enough said in my opinion.
Early in my career I did have a difficult time writing the steamy scenes. I grew up on hard science fiction books where not only was there no sex, there wasn’t even hand holding usually. Now I did read romances as well and some of them had very spicy moments but my author brain found it a challenge to mix the scifi with the romance and then allow my characters to fully experience each other. But I worked on it and I convinced my Muse it was necessary to show the closeness and intimacy between the hero and the heroine (I always write M/F with H/h) to fully present their story and their journey. I didn’t want to deny my readers the chance to see the entire story of how the man and the woman fell in love and carried that wonderful emotion to its logical fulfillment. Closed bedroom doors and fade to black weren’t going to be enough for the novels I was writing.
I find the love scenes flow much more easily for me now, after 40+ books in three genres. I like showing how much each person cares for and values the other and wants them to be happy. I worry a lot less about the mechanics and have I used the word ‘cock’ three times too many and what’s a good adjective to describe my hero’s amazing endowments. I get into the creative flow and let the moments unfold for the characters in the way they deserve and need to be with each other.
And always that Happy Ever After (or solid Happy For Now in the ongoing series) ending that a romance demands!