by Samantha Kane – look for her upcoming original historical romance in our Loveswept line, THE DEVIL’S THIEF – on sale later this Fall – recent CAPA Award Winner from The Romance Studio for Best Historical Romance, BROTHERS IN ARMS – congrats Samantha!
I like to write sex. I like to read it, too. Not just the down and dirty kind, but everything about the marvelous, glorious madness of sex. I love first kisses, the accidental brushing of a hand, the moment the hero or heroine realizes there’s a distinct possibility they are going to want to get naked with this person in the near future. I love sexual tension, sexy dialog, a romp in the hay, and even bad sex. Because when the hero and heroine have sex for the first time and it goes wrong for whatever reason, you know they are going to get it so right the next time out of the gate. Oh, the anticipation! Don’t you love that?
My upcoming Loveswept release, The Devil’s Thief, started out as an erotic romance. That means sex in the book between the hero and heroine was frequent and explicit, and integral to the plot. The feedback I got on the book from readers and other authors was very positive. But they all said the same thing: this book should be rewritten for a mainstream audience. That would require rewrites that included fewer sexual situations and much less explicit love scenes and language. But it meant even more than that. It meant I had to rework my plot, my characters and their arcs, and even my conflict. I even had to redefine the theme of the series.
An important part of the relationship in any erotic romance is the hero and heroine’s (or any combination thereof) sexual attraction. The sex in those relationships actually leads to, reinforces, or makes the relationship possible. In some way it helps to define the characters as a couple, both in the book for the characters, but also for the reader. If you can take the sex out of an erotic romance and still have the exact same story, then it isn’t an erotic romance.
I think sex is an important part of any romance, not just erotic romances. Even sweet and inspirational romances should have sexual tension jumping off the page. If you love to spend time with someone, enjoy talking to him, have the same interests…but you don’t want to have sex? Then it’s a friendship and not a romance. When I rewrote The Devil’s Thief as a mainstream romance, the love scenes and sexual tension were an integral part of the romance, but the sex doesn’t define them as a couple. With every word and gesture their sexual attraction is obvious, even though they fight it to no avail. It was so fun to write!
If you had the choice between a mainstream romance and an erotic romance, which would you choose? Why? Reminder, 5 winners are chosen on R@R weekly, randomly chosen winners announced on Sunday’s – good luck!