Monday, February 9, 2015


Last week, as I was reading other blogs, one blogger mentioned things they that pull them out of a story. I have several favorite writers and one just released a book. These are auto buy books for me and her quality and storytelling abilities are well developed. Her characters are intense, and they’re enhanced warriors with a special skill set. Women are just as deadly as the men. Great, I love that, and overall it’s an excellent kick ass story. Still, there were certain scenes that there was too much intrusion of inner dialog.

For example, we come to the first love scene. I don’t know about others but I don’t do much thinking when having sex. My focus is on my partner and mutual pleasure.

The guy strokes her leg, watches her eyes change, her reactions to his touch, I can see it I’m connected to both, and then…he goes off into a paragraph or two of thinking and planning how he’s going to have to handle her fears? 


Wait a minute, what happened to the lovemaking while all this thinking is happening? Are we on hold? It sure feels like it and bam, there goes my connection to the scene. 

Then it’s the woman’s turn and with all the inner dialog on
failures and worries. The whole scene is a series of stops and starts. While I understand there is some thoughts that are needed to make the love scene solid, rule of thumb is there should be action and emotional reaction in romance, but it shouldn’t stop the scene with paragraphs and a laundry list of unneeded angst or worries and plans for the next battle. And not every other paragraph in every love scene which spans ten plus pages. And bopping back and forth between her and then him thinking? 

Was it good for you Baby? Um, no. Arranging my sock drawer is looking better and better.
Reminds me of a song by Toby Keith about a little less talk (thought) and lot more action.

And I’ll be honest, I don’t always read the full love scenes, especially when they’re…rather graphic. I tend to skim them, okay, they’re making love, I got it. I don’t need every single breath, move, sigh, and groan. But with her stories you can’t skim as much because she drops some important bits of information. She doesn’t do it in her other action scenes—they’re tight and flow smooth as silk.

Maybe it’s just me but it’s irritating to the max. I wanted to throw the book across the room. Unfortunately, I’ve seen a few other authors doing this sort of thing lately. Sigh.

Here in the McKye world, the weather has been so mild it’s got me thinking about gardening and planning out the growing world for the McKye ranch. Of course, it’s much too early to implement but the ‘want to’ is there. <grin> A lot of prep work is still needed. And speaking of prep work I’ve been also been working on my manuscript.

Like with the gardening, there is a lot of prep-work needed. I have a very basic outline and I wrote several chapters to give me the feel of the characters. The world I’m creating is going to need some research to get it right. This project is also outside my usual genre. This one started out as a writing challenge. I already know this one will stretch me as a writer but I like the premise a lot. There are some weapons and their uses I need to be more familiar with to incorporate into the story and decisions on the clothing. It’s set, initially, in our world but there is a portal to another world that has moved one a different timeline, so I'm thinking  there will probably need have some differences. 

When you think different clothes then you have to think about materials that fit in the other world. And foods. What do they eat? What kinds of animals inhabit this world? It's earth, but not quite. It's fun to contemplate. I really like the main character and I'm still developing her sidekick. I know what he is and what he can do, mostly, because I know his parents and their purpose (that was in part of the character chapters I wrote) but now he needs to develop his unique personality and bridge to the main character. It's been a challenge but a fun one. So far.

How’s life in your corner of the world today?  Any thoughts on too much inner dialog when you’re writing or reading?


Kat Sheridan said...

Your story sounds interesting! Can't wait to see where you're going with it!

And I'm going to have to disagree about the thinking-during-love-scenes thing. For me, a love scene is a point in a book where everything changes for the characters. There's no going back to the way things were before. So I like to "hear" the mental struggles, the doubts, the desires, the way things are changing in their heads. But that's just me. And that's why different writers appeal to different folks! And that's a good thing!

Now, go back to writing YOUR story!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I find writing love making scenes so difficult even after a dozen romance novels. Getting the right amount of emotion and action is a fine line.

~Sia McKye~ said...

KAT--I agree and for some of the same reasons, there needs to be reaction and thinking but this just stopped the whole flow of the scene. It took me out of it entirely. I felt like I was freeze frame hold, while I heard all the thoughts.

SUSAN-- yes, exactly, it's a fine line.

Peaches Ledwidge said...

Well... what if the love making isn't so good and you really have to wander off to different places? What if the person cannot concentrate on thing at a time? (lol)

I do make some mistakes with internal monologues too, and I'm trying to balance everything.

Yolanda Renee said...

I was recently accused of not having enough inner dialogue, nice to know there is a fine line! Loved this topic as it's so topical for me!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Trust me, I am not thinking when engaged in lovemaking! Not with my brain anyway...

Donna Smith said...

I am not much for love scenes in books, nor violence...I like boring books, I guess! Ha!
At any rate - thanks for visiting my blog and joining in the Blitz a bit ago.
In the midst of one more snowstorm today (a Saturday through Monday...maybe Tuesday one, it looks like now!). Not thoughts of spring yet.

Jo said...

I do know what you mean about too much thinking. Also too much detail about their sexual activity. I skip it if I can. Maybe the people who banned Lady Chatterly were right. These days I imagine there are very few who don't know what happens in a sexual encounter so why describe every minute detail. Glad you are happy with where your book is going. Hope it continues to move in that direction.

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

I am so glad most of the romance in my novels is on the backside of a chapter so I can let it hang off a cliff without getting into the weeds.

Natalie Aguirre said...

I've never written a full love scene. Not sure I want to.

Awesome how you have a solid foundation for your new writing project.

~Sia McKye~ said...

PEACHES--I'm laughing here. To be honest, the love scene technically good the issue for me was just too much inner dialog. Yes, I have a time with balancing internal dialogs as well.

YOLANDA--I'm glad you enjoyed it. I know there has to be inner dialog. And it does fill out the story and characters. I also understand that as a writer, unless someone catches it, we might think we've shown enough. But then, we're close to it and know all the motivations. The reader doesn't. Fine line that takes practice, imo.

ALEX, there you go. People usually have fleeting thoughts and if seriously involved there isn't enough brain power to think clearly much less beyond the moment.

~Sia McKye~ said...

DONNA-Not boring books, just different style of storytelling. Nothing wrong with that. Depending upon your market, a storyteller can tell a perfectly good story without either. Sorry about the snow :-(. I told my husband, we're due a good one or three...

JO, Yah, the storytelling today tends hot and racy with a lot of details. Personally, I think you can play the emotions with enough impact that the minute details aren't necessary.
So far, so good with the story. I can assure you this story won't have detailed sex. It won't fit with this one.

NATALIE--I've written them and I can write hot, but it can't be a shortcut--it has to fit with the characters and storyline.
Yah, I'm excited with what I've accomplished. Still have a lot of work ahead of me but I'm taking it slow and easy.

MAC--I don't see anything wrong with cliff side. Kissing and petting and some inner thoughts and fade to black. Works. :-)

G. B. Miller said...

With the type of stuff that I write, basic intense/romantic love scenes are not part of the landscape. Most (if not all) of mine of more of the (if you pardon the cliché) "wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am/sir" encounters. Necessary evils that either move the story along or keep the same tone of the story.

In regards to inner dialogue, only in my first book was inner dialogue used, and that was directly due to the fact that the main character was talking to her symbiont and vice/versa.

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