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Matthew J. Brown

I think "if it works, do it" is a pretty over-riding rule. There certainly have been works that did this. For example, I remember a book that has fast-action scenes in present tense yet the rest of the book is in past tense. I didn't even NOTICE they did this until I was informed of this. It brought a powerful sense of immediacy to the right scenes.

On the other hand, if the reading experience lacks nothing if you take the changes out, then you shouldn't do it -- it could be confusing and jarring to some readers, so only do it if it improves things.

9/6/2010 #451
sophiesix

oh thats so awesome! i do that occasionally, and then laboriuosly go back and change every single occurrence back to past... but your right, it does make it more immediate. Maybe i'll give it a go for real some day

9/6/2010 #452
xenolith

Woah, yeah that is cool. I probably wouldn't have noticed either, but it is a great way to make a scene seem more immediate and exciting. This book I read switched tenses for the dream sequences, and then at the end it wound down in present tense which made me question the sanity and the reliability of the narrator. It was freakin awesome!

9/6/2010 #453
Jealous Rage

I have a question, but it can really only be answered by people who have read South Of Heaven. When it comes to the scenes involving extreme violence/torture, do you think I should go into more detail? I think I've been doing all right with what I have, but lately I've just been in the mood to really start making shit as gruesome and explicit as possible. What do you guys think; should I or shouldn't I?

9/6/2010 #454
xenolith

Go for it. Shock us, I dare you ;)

9/7/2010 #455
lookingwest

yes! I second this! :D

Be very shocking. I like that sort of realism!

9/7/2010 #456
C. Tattiana H-H

start making shit as gruesome and explicit as possible

I really like the sounds of that. McDo-eht!

9/7/2010 #457
lookingwest

I really like the sounds of that. McDo-eht!

XD

In related subject, it's chicken-nugget Tuesday today. get yer 99 cent chicken nuggets!!!!

9/7/2010 #458
berley

I have not read that story of yours, but with you asking that question I think I might.

When it comes to gore and violence I think you should be fearless and just go for it.

9/9/2010 #459
lookingwest

When it comes to gore and violence I think you should be fearless and just go for it.

+1

But, ahem, *like me* do some research before you decide to half cut-off your character's finger. *COUGHCOUGH*

9/9/2010 #460
xenolith

Woah, new person. Hey!

9/9/2010 #461
C. Tattiana H-H

But, ahem, *like me* do some research before you decide to half cut-off your character's finger. *COUGHCOUGH*

Ha-ha. Yes, research is always good. Speaking of which, I need to tweak that rotting carcass scene in Shadows...

9/10/2010 #462
Jealous Rage

There will be no cutting of my character's fingers. Well, maybe some of the minor ones. But luckily for them, they probably won't be forced to suffer for long. Good quick slashing of the throat will take away all their problems.

9/10/2010 #463
C. Tattiana H-H

Nice. Just make sure you describe the gurgle of blood and whatnot. :3

9/10/2010 #464
berley

Kind of on the same topic but not really...

I am currently working on chapter 6 of Young Lust, and this chapter has a sex scene in it that is really important to the plot. Exactly how detailed do you guys think I should get? I want to do it tastefully, but I am in debate if I want to like, fade to black, write just a bit of it, or just go for it and write it all out with all the lovely details. What do you guys think? I've never really written a scene like this out for other people to read...so I am not sure how I want to do it. haha.

Correction: besides chapter one, I have not written a scene like that for other people to read. Should I stick with the detail I had in chapter one, or get more into it?

9/10/2010 . Edited 9/10/2010 #465
C. Tattiana H-H

Limyaeel to the rescue!

Writing Sex Scenes: http://limyaael.insanejournal.com/427383.html

I haven't read your piece yet, but it's really up to you what you think would work for your story. If you're going to go into gritty details just because, perhaps fade to black might be the best choice.

9/10/2010 #466
berley

Thanks for the link, it gave me a lot to consider while I write the chapter. :)

9/10/2010 #467
C. Tattiana H-H

No problemo. Limyaael covers a lot of areas of story writing that could be applied to more than just the fantasy genre. Lots of lessons to learn, for sure. :D

9/10/2010 #468
xenolith

Oooh sex scenes. Tricky.

If you want to do it tastefully, I wouldn't go into too much detail. I think then that borders on comic/erotica (depending on how you look at it haha). But I'm all for description and emotion, you just don't necessarily have to put everything out there. I've only written once sex scene myself (albeit dark and abusive), and I focused on the character's reaction more than the particulars. It probably depends on the tone of the story. I'll have to read this first chapter of yours! Sounds interesting.

Actually... if you wanted to portray a sex scene as being something grotesque then detail away.

Okay, that's quite enough from me :p

9/10/2010 #469
Matthew J. Brown

The bad news is that doing sex scenes well is really, really hard. This is because it's easy to put people off your work right then and there if it makes them uncomfortable (and sex scenes are great at pushing peoples' buttons that way), and it's also very easy to write unintentional comedy.

That said, sometimes they're needed. They're obviously needed if you're writing erotica in the first place! That's not the only time they're needed, though. Most romantic plotlines will ultimately involve sex, and avoiding it as a writer if it needs to happen for the relationship to develop -- or, for that matter, go disastrously wrong -- can reduce the power of the plot and the characters' relationship. Sometimes sex is a great way to show another side to a character's personality -- good or bad. Sometimes it drives home a point.

Sex doesn't have to be sexy, either. In fact, some of the most powerful sex scenes in fiction are not sexy in the least. Grotesque, as xenolith mentions, or awkward, or (in the right story) shocking.

If you're going to be explicit, blunt is better than euphemistic; if you're naming parts already, you may as well call them what people really do call them, not some ludicrous flowery phrase that'll be grist for the mill of the weepingcock livejournal forum (where people point and laugh at bad sex scenes in fiction). If you're intending to be erotic rather than comic or horrific, for the gods' sake, read some current erotica and learn what people expect of the genre.

For most of us, and especially if we intend to publish here (outright erotica I don't believe is within the TOS), less detail is better. You can convey a lot about the important parts of sex without getting explicit, and your odds of unintended comedy are better as well.

9/10/2010 #470
xenolith

If you're going to be explicit, blunt is better than euphemistic; if you're naming parts already, you may as well call them what people really do call them, not some ludicrous flowery phrase that'll be grist for the mill of the weepingcock livejournal forum (where people point and laugh at bad sex scenes in fiction).

Haha, yes good point. Use words people actually say to make it seem more realistic.

9/12/2010 #471
berley

If you're going to be explicit, blunt is better than euphemistic; if you're naming parts already, you may as well call them what people really do call them, not some ludicrous flowery phrase that'll be grist for the mill of the weepingcock livejournal forum (where people point and laugh at bad sex scenes in fiction). Oh, so using phrases like 'the center of her heated core' and 'his firm and erect love shaft' are out of the question? :p

9/12/2010 #472
xenolith

Hmm, I think so... ;)

That reminds me of Ten Things I Hate About You, with the... what was it... quivering member haha.

9/12/2010 #473
lookingwest

Oh, so using phrases like 'the center of her heated core' and 'his firm and erect love shaft' are out of the question? :p

bwahahahaha

9/12/2010 #474
berley

That reminds me of Ten Things I Hate About You, with the... what was it... quivering member hahaI love that movie. So much. Sigh.

Yes, quivering member. I think I missed my calling of writing overly cheesy erotic scenes. I'm actually tempted on writing one out and posting it as "This is exactly what you should not do", just for shits and giggles.

9/12/2010 #475
C. Tattiana H-H

Do it! I, for one, would love it.

9/12/2010 #476
berley

Done. I'll totally work on it inbetween Young Lust, and whatever other story I decide to start up pretty soon. It will be a nice change from the emotionally detached, non romantic sex scene that I eventually have to write.

Heh. I hope it gets in depth reviews of how much it turns people on. It will be that amazing. haha.

9/12/2010 #477
sophiesix

Do it! I, for one, would love it

Totally! and yeah, i reckon it would be a good springboard for writing the good one: consciously putting all teh bad out there and away!

9/12/2010 #478
sophiesix

ok.

*puts down another confused review and takes a deep breath.*

For those of you who've read Nochnayia: how many think the whole Katya / Katyushka thing is too confusing? Be honest, who (apart from nikolai, in his wildest dreams) thought they were in fact the same person, and had just somehow lost her memory and didn't recognise Nikolai or something? Who didn't realise Part 2 occured Before Part 1, chronologically speaking, and was in fact just Nikolai telling Katya about how he ended up at the labour camp?

and finally, would all these problems be fixed if i put teh story into chronological order, starting with Nikolai in St Petersburg adn having Katya's camp bit in the middle?

just a coupla questions for ya's... thanks! 8)

9/14/2010 #479
C. Tattiana H-H

Ah! Dammit! Was that a spoiler that just glanced off my eye there? I still need to make my way over to that story! T_T

9/15/2010 #480
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