Greater Expectations

Greater Expectations

AKA Dealing With Reader Disappointment

My writing tends to confuse some people. I do this thing where I write plot, develop characters, create some fantasy elements and suspense and such, and then put a lot of sex in it. Gay sex, at that. For some reason, people get really surprised about the sex, even with my very clear disclaimers. Some actually get pissed off.

I don’t know what to tell you. I’m not going to stop writing sex. I’m not going to stop loving sex. I certainly don’t feel bad for writing sex in an otherwise interesting story. Most of my story plots focus on getting characters to have sex. Flat out. It’s erotica. Still, it doesn’t mean it has to be boring.

I love plot. I love a good story. I usually don’t find much of either in traditional romance novels. Honestly, I don’t really even understand the romance genre. You say fantasy, you get a fair idea of the range of what you’re going to get. Science fiction—you don’t even have to ask. There’s going to be something alien and something techy, no question. Thriller, Mystery, Action Adventure; we’re pretty sure what to expect. Romance. Well… old school Harlequin Romance… Girl meets boy/man and gets swept off feet… Maybe historical, maybe she’s really an assassin, maybe she falls for someone that turns out to be an alien or werewolf.

Romance is a really vague category. Why? Because it’s about a very common aspect of human lives thrown in with a plot. And that plot, although essential to keeping your reader engaged in the story, really exists for only one thing—no matter how much your writer might pretty it up with poetry and fancy imagery—to get your characters to have sex. Oh, they can scream love all they like, but if the characters don’t make out at least once, can you call it a romance novel? Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Leave a comment

Writer’s Block

Writer’s Block: Facing the Beautiful Lie

Why Can’t You Write?

This isn’t about pushing through distractions or even getting shit done for a deadline. This is all about facing those huge blocks, very likely the ones you’ve been facing for months to years, that you can’t get your head around. The ones you’re not even aware you have because you think it’s the sound of the television in the other room or that you need to clean as to why you’re not writing.

So I was recently reading this book about good writing habits to increase word count—because even though I’m writing, I still read about writing to see if I can’t improve what I’m doing. I enjoy the craft of writing as much as the act of it. Even though I choose to write smut. XD I came across this concept that I see a lot, and every time I see it, I cringe and want to throw the computer across the room.

Make writing a habit. Do it every day, the same time, until it’s effortless. Set a time aside, a room aside, and be consistent.

Fuck off, please.

How many people go to the gym at the same exact time every day? How about eat that healthy meal they’re supposed to eat? Brush their teeth? Only watch one hour of tv? Clean the house? You’re ‘supposed to,’ so you’re going to, right? If you’re one of those people that find these sorts of things so easy to create a routine of, this post probably isn’t for you. But if you’re a human being that’s isn’t a machine that doesn’t want to take something creative like writing and put it in a perfectly timed box where you order yourself to ‘create,’ set your peepers here. Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Leave a comment

Too Many Choices

Abundance: a double edged sword of too many choices

Sometimes you have too many choices, too many ideas. It’s actually my biggest problem lately. Actually, it’s one of those problems that have been haunting me my entire life. Please, don’t scoff. This is not out of some backward arrogance to show off or sound cool. I’m not, btw. Cool. I’m a fucking nerd. Artsy, loner, boring as fuck most days. Responsible. Anywho. I’m also really creative. I generate ideas and then I stare at them wondering where to start. It’s a real problem.

Before I was writing, I was facing the reality that my brain can pretty much take on any task well enough that I could succeed and likely make a living—If I didn’t have a mental break from the stress of whatever chosen career I followed. Used to sing professionally. Used to digitally paint professionally. Wouldn’t even need to be in the creative field—I can tear apart a job, organize it to simple steps and take on just about anything. With full blown Lyme I created a business model to make my own limited edition sculptures with short graphic novels tied in to the characters. They were fucking adorable little wax sculps and designs currently sitting on my shelf because I went a different path.

Skill is not enough. It sucks, but it’s true. You need more than a talent to succeed at a job. I could probably teach people how to write, sing, and paint and be pretty damn good at it because I like nurturing people. But I wouldn’t be able to handle it as a long term job. Why? I can’t handle being around people too long. Loner. Anxiety. So easily sucked into other people’s lives because of those empathetic synapses that I use to mirror and understand the interesting people around me while I try to stay afloat and self-contained. It was too difficult to be myself when my body used to be a musical instrument. Too painful to extract myself from my paintings to draw what other people wanted. Too fucking boring to do the same thing every day, my mind left to dull and grow dim even when it was creative. Human interaction/success/money isn’t enough for me. I need the creative growth to know I’m alive. It’s probably some unhealthy addiction but it’s the way I’m wired. And some days, weeks, months it just plain sucks.

I’m going to give you a list of what I’m dealing with on the writing front. I’ll follow up with some of my action plans that have worked. I’m sort of hoping this article is going to help me figure out my shit today because I’m flighty as fuck and can’t settle on a story. Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Leave a comment

Generating Ideas

How To Write Creative Story Lines For Erotica

Tired of writing the same old thing? Have you found your way around a sex scene but can’t seem to figure out an engaging, creative plot that hasn’t been done before? You have all the resources you need right in front of you, you just haven’t been looking at them the right way.

This isn’t a complicated system. It’s actually beyond simple. But it also take into account that you have the ability to come up with ideas to begin with. So, if you struggle on the creative front, you may want to just go on a summary reading binge, see what other people are doing, what draws your eye, what seems boring as fuck. If you’re the type to struggle with creative story lines, it’s probably because you’re not exposed to enough raw material, or you’re just not used to stretching that particular muscle. But the only way to get better is practice, and this system below helps in that sense immensely.

I took a basic color and design class back in college and learned this really simple skill that I feel applies well to writing stroke fiction. Stroke fiction, for those that don’t know, is basically short erotic writings 7,000-10,000 words in length. Smut, short and sweet. You’ll find a million little fics out there, all in particular niches and kinks—some much more popular than others.

So, during this course there was an exercise we had to do where we picked a topic and then during the week drew 50, 3×3 inch designs that concerned that topic. Colored sketches, nothing polished or perfect. The idea was to basically explore a topic without putting pressure, flipping ideas around and then, out of the 50, pick one that you want to finalize for the final project. Because I am a notorious procrastinator, I did all of my little sketches the night before my next class. It turned out fine.

Ideas can flow really well when you’re in the right place and some times they pop up when you least expect it. So when intentionally going to generate ideas, taking that little drawing model to mind, I came out with something similar for writing.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

A Love Affair With Plot

Is There Plot In Erotica? How To Write A Sexy Story

What’s that story about? Oh, it’s not just about screwing like bunnies (or werewolves, or whatever your kink is)? Things actually happen in an erotica? Well, it depends. One, it depends on you as a writer and how important you feel plot is. Two, it depends on your readers. I write m/m erotica targeted towards mostly women, aka yaoi. Seeing as they make a line of porn now just for women with more plot based stories, I’m going to say that on a whole, this market is seeking plot. That doesn’t mean you can skimp on the sex, it means you need to learn how to write both.

So I feel like I need to explain before I get into this topic that I used to be an avid reader. Like crazy. Actually, literally like crazy. With my difficult childhood, reading was my escape. I was reading a book a day. I’d stay up till the wee hours reading, read between classes, during recess, pretty much any moment I could catch. And many of these books weren’t really made for my age group. I read ‘Gone with the Wind’ when I was ten—there really was no stopping me from trying to be anywhere but in my life.

Because of this, I have been exposed to a huge amount of literature from classic Shakespeare to trashy romance novels (Shakespeare may be considered the trash of his generation, just saying.) I actually remember becoming extremely disappointed when I got older because something in the publishing industry changed. Editing seemed more of a suggestion, books fell apart in the middle, and just in general, things lost a lot of structure—and this was still before the self-publishing boom of ebooks. But there were also some really exciting things. I found authors that wrote in a different voice than the dull, very minimalistic writing I had grown up with. There was a new sensationalism to the art of writing and it made those book just so much more interesting and energetic.

What didn’t really change in all this was the content of a book. Oh, there were moments when I found myself a chapter into a book muttering to myself that the author already resolved all the tension and plot points so what the hell are the next ten chapters for? Books I completely gave up on because the writing was just so dull I stopped caring, or so disjointed that I couldn’t follow. Underneath it all, the reason I picked those books up to begin with was one thing; the promise of a story.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

The Craft Of Outline Writing

How To Write Faster With Outline Writing For Your Erotica

No, don’t run away! I know, you’ve heard it before; ‘Outlining is boring and it kills creativity. Real writers don’t outline, they let their art flow!’ Well, seriously? Bullshit. Not outlining is for those that can afford to take three years to write a book, screwing around waiting for their muses to come down and inspire them. I am not one of those people. If you’re depending on your writing to ‘flow’ when you’re trying to make a living, you’re screwed. Completely. Especially if you’re like me with so much messed up shit in the head that works daily to keep me from getting out of bed, never mind writing a bitching story.

Things happen in life—All sorts of things. Good things, bad thing, crazy things, unexpected things. All these things are going to be fighting for your attention the same way a beautiful sunny day does when you’re stuck indoors working. This is when outlining comes to the rescue. Can’t get through a tough/boring scene because you’re not feeling the creativity? Outline. Lost about when to have that huge impact of information because you don’t know if it will kill the tension? Outline. Not sure what the hell is going to happen in the whole damn thing but you know it has to have a hot guy and this one weird thing as a plot point? Outline. It will solve everything.

Alright, so now that I’ve given you an idea just what an outline can do for you, let me define a bit what I mean by outline. You might be surprised.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Spectacular Summaries

How To Write a Great Summary For Your Erotic Story

how to write a great summary for your erotic story

quick example of summary writing for a serial

Your cover is your first line of attack when getting your book or ebook noticed. Your second is your summary. It’s what you’d find on the back of the book, and it’s designed to get you hooked and reading. In a lot of ways, it’s even more important than the picture. You need to get your story across as interestingly as possible to appeal to the kind of reader that likes what you write. You need your summary to reflect the voice of your story, and you need it to be genuine. You can lie on your cover, but lie in your summary and your reader is going to hate you.

And I do mean hate.

Let’s break it down into some main points of where you can go wrong to keep you from writing a great summary.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Finding Inspiration For Unique Realistic Characters

How To Create Unique Characters For Your Erotic Writing

The way to create unique characters that are also realistic is to meet, know, and understand real people. This goes from aliens from outerspace to demons summoned to Earth, to the guy next store. If you want them to feel real to your reader, you need to give them traits of real people. Sounds simple unless you’re an introvert, then it sounds terrifying as fuck. Hi, I’m an introvert, btw. When I write aggressive characters, it’s a stretch on my personality. But I bet when you read them, like in:

 doing-wrong  Coffee-Guy-fedit

you can’t tell. I may be an introvert, but I also have a love of people and their many ways (even if I prefer them to not crowd me.)

Maybe you have a market of very educated, refined, academic women you want to tap with your erotic writing while comparing vaginas to flowers and talking about the social political repercussions of prostitutes. Try writing in their voice. Women that love sports, those tomboy types—I’m a tomboy but not a watching sports type unless I’m staring at some nice ass—try writing in the voice of the players they’re emulating, using the slang thrown around in their particular sport. Techy nerds? Go hang out in a few chatrooms and listen to some condescending know-it-all get defensive and tell you how much smarter they are than everyone else because they can code. Don’t bother trying; you can’t impress them.

Observe from life. If you want to have real characters with real reactions, you need to see how real people react. TV doesn’t count. TV people are fake people, especially sitcom people. The ones that never go to work but can afford the huge apartment in the middle of the city while getting into all sorts of hijinks. Not real. And if they’re not real, and they don’t feel real, your reader might not actually care what the hell happens to them in your story. Why? Because your reader is real and they want to relate to someone like them.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Writing Sensory

How To Improve Your Scenes With Sensory Writing

Improving with sensory writing can completely change your story and how your reader responds to it. It requires not only creativity but an ability to convey a character’s experiences realistically. Don’t let it daunt you; it’s worth learning just for the improvement in your writing.

This post is all about getting past just the writing visually and learning to open up and write with the rest of your senses. To be clear, this is not required in every scene you write. I feel like sensory writing is a balancing act. It’s about moving through some scenes from far away, then coming in for the close up—the close up being full of sensory experiences. Having an entire story of this type of writing could likely end up dragging on a bit as you go into far too much detail about walking to the front door to get the mail. But if a killer (or lets say raunchy pizza guy) is on the other side of that door, maybe you do want a bit of a close up as anticipation builds.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Juggling Names, Pronouns and Descriptors

How To Write Names, Pronouns and Descriptors

This is going to be one of the more important writing lessons you see here. Don’t let the subject matter trick you–This stuff can make or break a reader’s willingness to continue with your story. I know because I have failed to finish so many erotic stories because the author didn’t know how to write names, pronouns and descriptors . It might seem basic, but there is an art to it that’s going to help set your writing above the rest.

As you start writing a lot of character interactions, especially when you’re writing characters of the same sex, you find yourself facing a challenge. How to use the correct pronouns so that your reader is not confused as to which character is doing what, while at the same time not repeating the characters’ names fifty times in the same paragraph. This is actually not as simple as it sounds. Believe it or not, it’s a balancing act, one if done well enough the reader doesn’t even notice.

Continue reading

Posted in writing tips | Tagged , , | Leave a comment