It’s been a steep learning curve since I began writing contemporary romance, I had no idea what a minefield the sex issue was! Who knew there were actual levels of heat that I needed to try and target?
Wholesome Romance, Sweet Romance, Sensual Romance, Sexy Romance and then Erotic Romance. Mind blown!
When the first draft of the book went through editing it became apparent that I was half sweet and half sexy (no comments please!). The problem being that the sweet romance fans would be offended by some of the more freethinking idea’s I had. Whilst the sexy romance fans would be disappointed that there wasn’t enough heat and sexy language.
Draft two, drove me to distraction! I was seriously grumpy while I re-wrote large sections of plot. I always wanted the book to be hugely romantic, I want to make the readers feel like they’re falling in love along with the characters. So of course, sex is going to be a massive part of that. I didn’t want to gloss over it or be totally unrealistic and pretend that consenting twenty somethings just weren’t going to bother. I also couldn’t bring myself to write hugely erotic language knowing that one day my kids might pick it up. The Missed Kiss ended up sitting firmly in the Sensual Romance category, and I think it suits it really well.
I didn’t want there to be sex scenes for the sake of it, or to bulk the book out, or just attention grab. The sex is there to help mould the story, to add to the experience of the characters and their love stories.
There are actually awards for bad sex in fiction however, so I just pray I don’t receive one! One of my lovely advance readers messaged me a few days ago after reading the start of my second book to say, “Can I be your lover?” So hopefully that means I’m striking the right balance!
Maybe one day I’ll release the more risqué version (I still have the original draft). Anyone expecting 50 shades will be disappointed, but I think this is a better story personally! I guess time and reviews will tell…
I can’t believe you’ll all be reading The Missed Kiss in just over four weeks! Nervous much?! I’ll just keep writing book two and distract myself!
Lots of love, Nicola xxx – the sweet & sexy one apparently!