I happen to think that I’m a very good writer*; I can write fiction and nonfiction, short stories, novels, essays, letters, dialogues, diatribes, speeches, scripts, theses, memoranda, comic books, you name it. But in spite of my prowess (which I hope is at least somewhat evident to the regular readers of this blog), there is one thing which I absolutely cannot write to save my life: Sex scenes.
Now, understand, it’s not that I’m a prude. Far from it; I have no problem with anyone getting their rocks off in whatever way they and their consenting, adult partners are comfortable. I can, without difficulty, understand the idea of sexual urges. The problem, however, is that I do not personally feel them. As such, when writing these scenes (which tend to come up rather inevitably in stories) I feel a lot like a person without a sense of taste who is trying to write a restaurant review. I have no way of knowing whether or not the scene is “good,” because it’s not going to have any effect on me either way (when I personally encounter these scenes in literature, I generally just find them boring). Indeed, I’m actually not even sure what most authors are aiming for with these scenes: I assume that, even in mainstream literature, they are intended (at least to some extent) to titillate the reader, otherwise I don’t understand why they would go into so much detail. But what is titillating? If I’m writing from the perspective of an omniscient, third-person narrator, should I use the actual names of various body parts, or are vernacular terms somehow ‘hotter?’
Apparently, these scenes are generally fairly formulaic. Perhaps I should just get a sexual person to council me in writing a scene to a preset level of hotness, and then recycle it as necessary in subsequent works.
*Though my poetry is a tad amateurish