Tag Archives: finessing sex

Finessing Sex Notes: Post Your Exercise on Irregular Voice

I’ve been asked for the notes from my Eroticon writing workshop, Finessing Sex and the In Media Res exercise I used at the end, so here they are. Sadly, the forty-five minute time allotted to us meant that most of the people in the workshop didn’t get the chance to share their work. The lovely Mia Moor has kindly taken it upon herself to solve that problem by allowing anyone who participated or anyone who wasn’t able to attend the workshop but wants to do the exercise to post their creative efforts on her wonderful website, Irregular Voice Thank you SO much, Mia, for sharing your site! You’re the best.

Below are the notes from the hand-out I used, which I’ll also pass on to Ruby for the Eroticon site. I’ve added just enough to clarify where needed. Enjoy!




Part 1: Creating Characters                           

Create at least two characters, and give yourself five minutes to create a very rough character sketch of each. Feel free to use characters from a story you’re working on and use the scene for your story or simply use the exercise for raw material. Do whatever you want with your characters as long as by the end of your scene at least one character has sex

Number one rule: Write! Keep on writing! Don’t stop!

Setting yourself a limited amount of time in which to brainstorm a topic or a character is a fantastic way to get beyond the internal editor to the good stuff! Allow yourself to play with the words and have fun.

Part 2: Cause some chaos. Ask yourself:

1. How can the sex scene you’re about to create have the most impact in your plot?writing-image-2-225x300

2. What are the consequences of this sex scene?

3. Who is affected by this sex act?

4. What revelation does this sex scene bring about?

5. How can this sex scene be used most affectively to drive your story?

Remember! Sex should NEVER be gratuitous. Sex always serves a purpose.

6. When the sex is over, how will the landscape of the story be changed?

Part 3: Choosing a POV. Ask yourself:

1. From whose POV is the sex in this scene most interesting. Why?

(If you choose to write your scene from the third person objective POV, why is that the best POV?)

2. Whose POV will best move your story forward? Why?

3. Whose POV will result in the most chaos?

4. Whose POV will give the most emotional charge?

5. Who has the most baggage?

Hint: Baggage is one of the best tools for helping choose POV. Baggage is what every person carries from childhood, from traumas, from past sexual experiences or lack thereof, from anything within the emotional place where your character is when you write her/him having sex.

Note: Not all of these questions may be satisfied by one character’s POV. You’ll have to choose which POV will best serve the story. Sometimes the most important thing about the POV character is the insights he/she offers the reader into another character!

Part 4: The ‘Photo Shoot’

Think of the scene you’re writing in terms of a series of snap shots. You, the writer, are now the photographer, and you get to choose the snapshots you believe will give your reader the most vivid experience of the story you’re telling. Remember, the ultimate voyeur in the story will be your reader, so make the scene worth looking at. Think in terms of:

1. The physical attribute of your characters.

2. Using all of the senses.

3. What does the person who’s POV you’re writing from actually think about her/his experience of sex. The running internal commentary can sometimes be the sexiest part of a sex scene, or the most revealing. Remember, this is why you’ve chosen this person’s POV.

4. The language used in the sex scene is also a powerful tool for eliciting emotion, arousal, a sense of who these people shagging are, what matters to them, and how they experience sex.

5. Location can raise the risk factor, raise the discomfort level, raise the heat level and affect the pacing of the scene.

Step 5: Write it!

1. In Media Res. Minimise the setup and start in the middle of the action. Tell the story from the inside out.

2. Remember! Editors are busy folks. They may give you as few as three paragraphs. If you hold their interest for three, then you get a fourth. If you enthral them for four, then you get a fifth …

Your job is to start at the point that grips and make the reader unable to leave until they find out what has happened to put your characters in such a position.

The Exercise: Using the above tools, write for ten minutes. Write without stopping; write without slowing down. Start in the middle of the action and create some chaos as quickly as possible.

Now write like the wind!

And when you’re finished, don’t forget to head on over to Mia’s site, Irregular Voice, and add your results and check out what everyone else came up with.

Helpful Sites:

Erotica Readers and Writers Association: http://www.erotica-readers.com/

Erotica for All: http://eroticaforall.co.uk/

How to Write Erotic Fiction: http://howtowriteeroticfiction.blogspot.co.uk/

The Erotic Literary Salon: http://theeroticsalon.com/

My Websites: https://kdgrace.co.uk/ , http://gracemarshallromance.co.uk/

Helpful Books:                  

Writing Erotica:

How To Write Erotic Fiction and Sex Scenes — Ashley Lister

How to Write a Dirty Story –Susie Bright

Writing Erotic Fiction – Pamela Rochford

Love Writing: How to Make Money Writing Romantic or Erotic Fiction – Sue Moorcroft

Writing Craft and Inspiration:

Writing Down the Bones – Natalie Goldberg

Best book ever on giving yourself permission to write badly in order to get to the good stuff.

Self-Editing for Fiction Writers – Renni Brown and Dave King

Best book on self-editing and honing craft I’ve found.


Finessing Sex at Eroticon 2013



This time next month I’ll be enjoying Eroticon 2013. I’ll be partaking of the feast of workshops on blogging, writing, publishing, photography, art,  sex education, and more. I’ll be taking advantage of opportunities for networking and meeting new people. I’ll be enjoying and participating in readings by erotica authors. I’ll be getting to know in person people I’ve chatted with online. And just like last year, no doubt, there’ll be lots of dreaming and scheming and just flat-out fun. I’m looking forward to seeing more than a few of you there.

I have to admit my knees get a little shaky and I get butterflies in my stomach when I think about Eroticon 2013 because this year, there’s a delicious list of creative writing workshops offered over the two-day period. There’ll be workshops taught by some of my heroes in the erotica writing world – Kristina Lloyd, Remittance Girl, Vena Ramphal, and Ashley Lister. I’m very much looking forward to the opportunity to learn from the best.

So why the butterflies and nerves? Well, because this year I’ve been asked to teach one of the five creative writing workshops at Eroticon! It’s a first for me. I’ve never actually taught a writing workshop before, and I’m very excited to have been asked. And to be asked to do so in such excellent and exalted company is definitely an honour.

Everyone who knows me and reads my books or my blog (hopefully both) knows that the only time I’m not talking or thinking about writing is writing image 2when I’m sleeping, and then I’m often dreaming about it. Yup, I’m a bit obsessive, and to say I’m enthusiastic about it would be an understatement. I hope to bring some of that enthusiasm for sexy stories into my workshop.

My workshop is called Finessing Sex and, while it’s aimed at giving newbies a foot-up in writing and selling erotica, I like to think that everyone can benefit from another peek at the basics — I know I always do. So there’ll be a little something for everyone.

Finessing sex will take writers beyond the slang of the old ‘in and out’ and beyond the biology of coitus to the other levels within the story and the characters where sex takes place. I hope it will show how well-written sex shapes the story and the characters. The session will involve some writing, some brainstorming and hopefully a whole lot of fun.

I also hope to talk a little about how to best make sure one’s story gets and holds the attention of an editor and how to deal with the inevitable rejections that litter the route to those first sales.

For me, writing has always been about fun. I can’t remember a time when it hasn’t been one of the best parts of my life. But finessing that writing, finessing the sex and the story that goes with it is where the real fun begins, and I hope to share the fun on Sunday March 3rd at 2:15 pm.

Eroticon speaker badge pinkPlease join me for  Eroticon 2013!

Get your tickets here:

Eroticon 2013:

Date and Venue:

Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd March 2013 which will be held at the Coin Street Conference Centre, 108 Stamford Street, SE1 9NH