This post has been brewing in my mind for a REALLY long time. The thing that has always stopped me writing it is, firstly, I know a lot of people who read my blog only read clean romances, so they will likely just skip over it, but also, the potential for abuse I might get for it - because people take erotica very seriously!
Those concerns still hold true - but I am tired of holding in this semi-rant.
Before anyone asks why I read it if it bugs me so much - it's not always erotica. Sometimes it's just a sex scene in a book. I don't choose to read erotica very often. Hardly ever, actually. But when I do, it's pretty samey and makes me do this:
This post isn't meant as an attack on anyone who HAS used the following phrases in a sex scene - clearly they work or people would have stopped using them ages ago. Also, I hate when writers write arsey posts about what they dislike, because it WILL offend someone. Everyone has their own style, and if it's working, awesome! Nobody's opinion is more important that anyone else's. Really, at the heart of this post, what I'm actually saying is, it's okay to change things up. It's okay not to follow the crowd and use the same phrases as everyone else.
Let's say someone makes you a lasagne for dinner. You love it. It's cheesy, and tasty, and delicious. You love everything about it; the smell, the taste, the feeling of satisfaction because you've just eaten the best meal ever. And then the same person makes it for you the next day. Oh yeah, still delicious. But imagine if you had to eat lasagne, made the exact same way, for a week. A month. Three months. A year. That taste you loved so much at the start becomes bland, tasteless, maybe even nauseating.
See my point?
So, I bring you my list of erotica terms that make me squirm.
"You're so wet."
*vomits*. The moment I see these words, my eyes glaze over and I assume I am about to read another sex scene that will be the same as the majority of other sex scenes already out there. Sometimes I'm wrong, but nine times out of ten, I'm not. It goes like this: Get naked. Kiss. Man puts hand between woman's legs until she writhes. Woman claws at man's back. Woman begs him for more. Man plunges into her. Fireworks go off. I have no business mocking this formula, in fact I'm not, I've used it myself. It's not so much the order of events that matters, but the words used to describe them. I genuinely cannot recall a single sex scene I've read recently that didn't have the words "you're so wet" in it at least once, if not more. My annoyance of this is only topped by the words, "You're so wet for me, baby." (See below!)
Excessive use of "baby"
I mean, really. Unless you're Justin Bieber, nobody says the word "baby" that many times. I suspect some of this is an editing error. Sometimes, when writing, you don't realise you've used the same word so often. It's not necessary. You wouldn't use a person's name so excessively when talking to them. Imagine it,
"How are you today, Kyra?"
"Very well, thanks? And yourself?"
"I'm great, Kyra. Any interesting plans for the day, Kyra?"
STOP SAYING MY NAME! IT'S CREEPY!
"Do you like that, baby?" "What do you want, baby?" "Oh, yeah, baby." Enough already.
The "C" word.
This is another one that baffles me. Why does this have to be announced? Whatever happened to good, old-fashioned moaning? "Come" is also not a particularly sexy word, but I suppose it would be even more cringey to say, "Well, goodness me, I appear to be having an orgasm." And if you can GET that many words out during sex, someone is doing something wrong.
I am absolutely positive there are more - but these are the main ones for me. Perhaps there is a book somewhere that tells authors these are the key things that make erotica hot. And maybe it really does work. But there is nothing wrong with saying to yourself, "Hey, you know what? I'm going to do this a different way." Ultimately, that's what we all do when we write a book, isn't it? We strive to create different to what's already out there. There are endless words in the world - I genuinely believe there are other phrases that are sexier than these now overused phrases.
So, talk to me. Are there any phrases in sex scenes that make you squirm?