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Getting On With It
Written by Paul   
Wednesday, 02 November 2011 23:28


Utterly adorable mixed-breed brindled dog staring cross-eyed at a dog biscuit laid along his nose.

"Soon."

Picture of Jaxon by trazomfreak on Flickr.

Pacing is a major consideration in any work of fiction, even moreso in the rather densely-plotted variety I myself tend to work in.  You can't pace things sloppily in a long work, otherwise you end up with long stretches that seem to do nothing, while other sections of narrative are too packed with detail and it overwhelms the reader.  You not only have to make sure that your high points of action are exciting and well-done, but that you give the characters (and readers) sufficient space around them.

A good action climax is very much like a sex scene, in that you need a bit of buildup to allow anticipation to grow, and then you need some time after in order to wind down.  All this takes place on an appropriate scale - in a short story, a climax may take up three or five pages, and thus need a page or two on either side to give it breathing room.  In a novel, a climax might go on for several chapters, and thus need at least one or two "fallow" chapters to either side of it to give it proper placement. 

All this is complicated further when writing porn, as you have not just one kind of action to handle (spaceship battles, swordfights, car chases, etc,) but two.  You have to not just pace and allow room for proper timing for the standard kinds of action, but you have to allow for rising action and very literal kinds of climaxes with the sex scenes.  The sex scenes also have to follow a pattern of increasing stakes and raised tension, as well as having room to breathe.  And here we run into a question that bedevils me, given the kind of stuff we write here: how long do you take getting to the good stuff?

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Do It Yourself
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Written by Amanda Gannon   
Tuesday, 01 November 2011 00:50

On a piece of particle board, small nails and screws form the stenciled outline of the words

Photo from Flickr, here.  Creative Commons 2.0.

A couple of weeks ago, in Femdom, Intimacy, and Porn, I complained at length about the lack of erotic material that appeals to me.  It's a subject I think I could rant about every damn day and not get tired of it, but I must move on.  Specifically, to my least favorite rebuttal of all.

A common response to this problem is "There's not demand for that kind of thing.  If you don't like it, make your own."  Usually followed by a smiley.  And by "common," I mean that I see it almost every single time the subject comes up, to the point that I'm usually surprised not to see it.

Look around.  You're in the cyberspace living room of two pornographers.  I do make my own.  It doesn't help much.  The process of creating your own porn doesn't leave you with a product that you can appreciate in the same way as something that is totally new to you.

"Make it yourself" also completely fails to take into account the fact that it's so much less viscerally satisfying to read or look at something when it holds no surprises and can therefore hold no suspense.

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The Green Monster
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Written by Paul   
Thursday, 27 October 2011 01:13


A very annoyed black cat clutches a teddy bear protectively. Caption:

This monster is not green, but it is certainly jellus.

Jealousy is one of the most overhyped and dangerous emotions out there, and it has become almost enshrined in popular culture as a pass to do whatever you want.  I would say that after flat-out prudery, jealousy is the biggest barrier to any kind of real, honest discussion of sex.  After all, isn't one of the big caveats thrown up at porn users that their partners are (or should be) jealous of their porn use?  "How can I compete?" is something I have heard more often that I care to remember.  Ignoring the fact that your sex life is not, and should not be, a competition of any kind.

I understand jealousy, I do, but sexual jealousy now seems as foreign to me as Klingon.  I can remember that I used to feel it, but I can't really recall how it felt.  Sometimes that causes problems, especially when writing porn.  After all, sexual jealousy comes up in porn fairly often, and depicting it is something I am called upon to do as a pornographer.  I find this a sticky topic in several ways.

I personally find the frisson between the expectation of sexual fidelity and the total sexual abandon we normally depict in our work to be tremendously interesting, and fertile ground for the kinds of psychological tension that makes sex much more exciting than just bodies rubbing together.  The most alluring sex is the sex you aren't supposed to be having, and if there's not some barrier or element of wrongness to a coupling then it's not going to be compelling.  A pairing that entails a large age difference, or societal barriers like class, race, or even familial relation is much more interesting than just two people getting it on.  It provides that element of inner conflict that makes for a really hot scene.

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