I write Erotica, yes, I said it.

Posted by Tamara LeBlanc | 8:00 AM | 17 comments »

Hi,
My name is Tamara and I write erotica. (Hi Tamara)
Many of my friends know I write romance, but very few of them know I’ve recently tackled writing the really, really steamy stuff. I suppose it’s just not something that comes up in everyday conversation. “Oh I love your new purse, and by the way, did you know I’m writing about engorged members, multiple orgasms and fellatio lately?”
I’ll admit I’ve kept the new subgenre I’ve embraced to myself in polite society for the most part.
But why is that? Why can’t I be proud of erotica? Why can’t I shout it from the rooftops? I LOVE WRITING HOT, SEXY STORIES! WOOHOO!
For years I wrote romantic comedies and light paranormals. I certainly didn’t close the door on my character’s beneath-the-sheet-retreats, but I certainly wasn’t writing erotic love scenes either.
I always figured writing a full story with multiple, explicit sex scenes would be hard (pun intended). I wondered - Can I evoke a physical response with my writing? Can I come up with varied terminology for certain body parts and different sexual acts that don’t sound trite and overused? Can I use sex as a plot device? And can I keep it fresh? These questions bombarded my brain and kept me from stepping out of my comfort zone for a very long time.
But after a while I realized that an erotic romance is still a romance at heart - two people meet, they interact together, overcome obstacles together, achieve goals together and in the end they fall in love. But in an erotic romance there’s a bonus. The hero and heroine have earth shattering, mind blowing and often times unconventional sex together too. Pretty cool bonus if you ask me.
With these things in mind, I took a chance, stepped over the edge and tried my hand at an erotic romance.
And I’m so glad I did.
I love the story I’m writing. I love the characters, the world they inhabit, the creatures that populate it (paranormal erotic romance) and the love that grows between them (not the creatures, the hero and heroine) This story is challenging and difficult and frustrating, but it’s also the most rewarding bit of writing I’ve ever done. And I can’t wait to do another.
My point here is this – write outside of your comfort zone every once in a while. Force yourself to push the envelope and try something totally new.
In the end, you might find out your new endeavor isn’t quite your cup of tea, but then again, you might realize switching genres was the best leap of faith you’ve ever taken.
Have a lovely week.
Happy writing to all,
Tamara

17 comments

  1. magolla // March 3, 2009 at 8:23 AM  

    I so agree with you about writing outside your comfort zone. If you feel stuck writing XYZ and can't seem to make any forward movement toward publication, then write in a different genre. Who knows, maybe the new story will be your 'break-out' novel. Sometimes just writing outside your personal box will jumpstart your imagination and give you the push you need.

  2. Cyrano // March 3, 2009 at 10:50 AM  

    Exactly, Magolla.
    It's often hard to do, but can be worth the effort!

  3. Mona Risk // March 3, 2009 at 12:31 PM  

    Hi Cyrano,

    I bet you enjoyed going out of your comfort zone. I read an erotica by Rachel Chase, Out Of Control. It was so cute, so well written, a pleasure to read. Whether a story is erotica or not, in the end, it's the author's voice that makes a good story.

  4. Pamela Varnado // March 3, 2009 at 12:43 PM  

    Tamara,
    Taking chances is what life is about, especially If we want to live life to the fullest and not just survive. Good for you. Having read your story, I can say that it's really hot. Smoking hot! You've done a great job of creating a world that's complex and even funny at times.

  5. Mary Marvella // March 3, 2009 at 1:03 PM  

    Hey, Baby Chick,(Inside thing)

    Our little critique group meets in a Borders bookstore. Imagine critiquing our loud and glancing around to see who seems to be listening to us.

    We can't always whisper our sexual comments because I, Mama Hen, don't hear quiet talk well, even with hearing aids. Imagine hearing "but that won't work, part A won't fit part B unless you ..."

    Good post, Tamara.

  6. Cyrano // March 3, 2009 at 1:10 PM  

    Mona,
    Yep, venturing out of my comfort zone is a blast!
    Good to hear you liked the erotic romance you read. Maybe one day when I'm PAN you might pull Lover's Doom off a shelf and enjoy it as well.

    Pam,
    Thanks for the compliment. Plus, I'm also very proud of you too. You dove, head first into your romantic suspense even though it made you nervous. And look at how great that turned out. I loved reading the first story and can't wait to read more of the next!

    Luv Tam (your favorite critique partner. It's okay, I won't tell the others)

  7. Barbara Monajem // March 3, 2009 at 3:06 PM  

    Totally agreed here. Moving out of one's comfort zone is almost always a good step. Comfort zones tend to be like bogs, in that they suck you under and keep you there. Now isn't that an icky simile. Sorry!

  8. Scarlet Pumpernickel // March 3, 2009 at 4:46 PM  

    Tamara, I enjoyed your post. It made me stop and think for a moment. Tamara's writing erotica? Hot, steamy, turn up the sexual tension erotica. And here I thought you were such a reserved young lady! NOT! Bet your doing a great job of it, congrats on pushing those boundaries. Hummmm, wonder if I could do it?

    Scarlet-blushing at the thought!

  9. Arkansas Cyndi // March 3, 2009 at 5:20 PM  

    You are so right. My local chapter does "challenges"... i.e. write a story for Black Lace and submit it. It was totally out of my comfort zone. I did it. It didn't get bought but it was an mind-expanding experience.

    Great food for thought.

  10. Mary Ricksen // March 3, 2009 at 6:28 PM  

    What a great post. To me erotica is so very hard to write. You have to know what you are doing.(grin)
    When you get the right mix of storyline and erotica that's when you get a great book. I have read erotica that I couldn't finish, but I have also read erotica I could not put down! I agree with Mona, it's the authors voice that makes the story. No matter what you write about.

  11. Romily Bernard // March 3, 2009 at 8:59 PM  

    As usual, m'dear, you have it exactly right. I would just add one more thing: we have to stop apologizing for what we write. If we enjoy it, then we have nothing to be ashamed of.

    Of course, it would be even lovelier if I could take my own advice, but I am still fully entombed in the writing closet. Ah well. Guess I'm not the first hypocrite =)

    And, by the way, I can't believe you and Pam didn't tell me you had blogs coming up! I am so late to the party.

    Love ya!

  12. Tami Brothers // March 3, 2009 at 9:54 PM  

    Too cool, Tamara!!! I'm rooting for you 100%. I would LOVE to read what you have written sometimes. Just the titles you come up with are beyond me...

    Way to COME OUT OF THE CLOSET!!! grin...

    Tami Brothers

  13. Beth Trissel // March 3, 2009 at 11:07 PM  

    Good for you. Be bold, be brave.

  14. Edie // March 4, 2009 at 12:07 AM  

    I write out of my comfort zone a lot. Though I don't write erotica, I enjoy writing sex scenes, too.

    And hot, sexy stories are in demand now. This might be your breakout book.

  15. Linsey Lanier // March 4, 2009 at 12:16 AM  

    Good luck with your story, Tamara! It sounds like a good one. You were so right to ask those yourself questions. Oddly enough, even erotica can become boring, if it's the same thing over and over.

    But your story sounds very original. Sounds like you've got something really . . . provocative... hmmm.

    Hope we all get to see it in print soon!

    Linsey

  16. Cyrano // March 4, 2009 at 11:23 AM  

    Sorry ladies, that I'm just getting back to this. I had a crazy day yesterday. Hope you all see this.
    Scarlett,
    Yes, I, reserved, sweet demure, Tamara am enjoying the hell out of writing about bumping uglies! Grin.
    Momma hen,
    I think the people in Borders actually come to hear us whisper about our hero and heroines love scenes, not to buy books. After all, why would so many of them be in the cafe? Hehe
    Arkansa Cindi,
    I'm glad you stepped out of your comfort zone and did the Black Lace thing. Sounds sexy, what exactly is that?
    Mary Ricksen,
    I agree whole heartedly. Voice is key. Let's just hope I've got a bit of it.
    Romily,
    I love seeing you here on the PFSW blog. Yippy.
    And yes, YOU are your worst critic. Your Writing is fantabulous and so compelling. You're the pot callin the kettle black baby doll. Smile, you were born to tell stories.
    tami,
    Thanks for rooting for me, I luv ya darlin.
    And I'm glad I'm out of the closet too, but brrrr it's chilly in the big wide writing world.
    Edie, I've got all my fingers and all my toes crossed in hopes that this will be, "THE ONE"! I never realized it until now, but I love writing sex scenes too. It's so liberating.
    Beth,
    Thanks so much.
    Linsey,
    You're sweet, I hope I see it in print one day too.
    Thanks so much ladies, all of you for the comments. I really appreciated them

  17. Pamela-reader // March 4, 2009 at 7:15 PM  

    You GO girl... we need more erotica writers out there that actually know what a plot is versus just going for the raunchy stuff! I love a good book that gets my blood pumping and has me start asking hubby when he's coming home. (nudge, nudge, wink, wink.) (giggle)