Friday, August 21, 2009
Petit Fours and Hot Tamales is excited to welcome debut author, Jessica Lee, whose first novel, an erotic paranormal, DESIRE TO DIE FOR, was just released by Loose-Id. Jessica Lee lives in the southeastern USA with her husband and son. She loves writing, and can’t wait for that quiet time each day when her son is in school and she can get lost in another place and world with the fantastical, sexy creatures in her head. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America, FF&P, Carolina Romance Writers and Passionate Ink.
By Jessica Lee
Snap, Crackle, KaPow!! That’s what I love to feel between my hero and heroine when they collide. Like fireworks sparking and exploding between them. Isn’t that what you’re looking forward to when you pick up that romance novel or download it from your favorite ePublisher? I know I am. Their chemistry and the sexual tension is what makes it so good.
The sizzle of sexual tension between your protagonists is not always easy to create and to keep flowing, burning up the pages. But man, as a reader, you miss when it isn’t there. I’m a big fan of romance, and It’s that connection between the couple, at the big bang level, that keeps me coming back for more.
Karen Marie Moning is an author I personally feel who does an exceptional job creating sexual tension between her hero and heroine that sizzles. Her Highlander series, from cover to cover, is filled with chemistry that’s heats up the pages. Her work has truly been an inspiration to me.
Then of course, there is Lora Leigh. Love her. Talk about animal magnetism and sizzle. If you haven’t read her Breed series, and you’re in the mood for a little tension and spice, you’ve come to the right place.
When creating that spark of chemistry between my hero and heroine and to keep it on the page, there are three things, or an ABC rule, that I have to keep in mind.
A.The immediate reference I have on hand is the Twelve Steps of Intimacy. The research of Dr. Desmond Morris, a behavioral scientist, documented these twelve steps and theorized that there is a sequence of events that must be followed in order for a couple to properly bond. it’s an invaluable tool to keep on hand when you’re introducing your couple and as their romance builds.
1)Eye to Body : This step is almost insignificant. All it means is that one person has seen another. This stage usually passes quickly.
2)Eye to Eye : This is the stage of eye contact. Each person knows the other has seen them, and this may be the beginning of flirting.
3)Voice to Voice : In this stage, the couple begins to talk to each other. Can be one sided, or a dialogue.
4)Hand to Hand: This stage is holding hands. This is when the relationship begins to deepen from simple friendship.
5)Arm to Shoulder: Putting the arm around the shoulder of the other person signifies a deepening closeness and intimacy. When holding hands there still is often some space between the partners, but in the Arm to shoulder stage closeness is practically intrinsic.
6)Arm to Waist: The arm to waist stage is indicative of a growing familiarity and comfort level in the relationship.
7)Mouth to Mouth : This is the stage when the couple begins kissing.
8)Hand to Head : Touching other people's heads is highly intimate, partially because so many vital senses are concentrated in the head. This is a sign of deepening trust to allow someone else to touch your head.
9)Hand to Body : This is the stage where foreplay begins.
10)Mouth to Breast : Foreplay continues, obviously.
11)Hand to Genitals
Dr. Morris’s list can easily be found online. I located a copy to include here at http://www.everything2.com/title/12%2520Steps%2520to%2520Intimacy
B.Consists of some wonderful advice I learned from Madeline Hunter in a workshop she presented to my chapter back in 2008. She stated that you have to keep your characters apart even as they’re getting together. Sounds simple enough, but it takes work and some careful story planning.
C.Involves merging A with B. Your couple’s attraction and the intimacy that you’ve built through the twelve steps, is the pull that makes them unable to resist coming back for more. But the conflict you’ve placed them in is the push that keeps them apart.
Making sure that conflict is strong enough to carry throughout the story, even though the relationship may have been consummated many times, is vital to keeping the kind of sexual tension that’s palpable until you write, The End.
My debut novel, Desire to Die For is available now at Loose Id. If sexy, tortured alpha male vampires are what you yearn for, then the Warriors of the Enclave have been waiting for you.
What characters have you found that spark the sizzle within you?
Leave a comment and I’ll pick one lucky winner at the end of the day to receive a $10gift certificate to Loose-Id!