Kat's and she wants to know:
How do you feel about love scenes? As a reader, are you put off by the gratuitous? As a writer, do you shy away from spelling out the down-and-dirty? Or do you write until your computer lights a cigarette?
Kat, Kat, Kat. Sigh. You've managed to tap into my single greatest writing fear. So how do I feel about love scenes? I don't like them. As a reader, I'm not into them. I'm not a prude, I simply find them mostly unnecessary. Unless they show us something vital to the characters, then I think they're gratuitous. But the truth, and I believe this, is that anything you can reveal during a sex scene, you can reveal somewhere else.
The other reason I'm not for them is because sex is inherently funny. If you objectively look at the mechanics of it all, sex is a cosmic joke. So from a writing perspective, I think that most sex scenes either turn out laughably flowery, overly mechanical, or vulgar and porny. If my characters talk about sex, I usually approach it with humor. Sex is a difficult thing to take seriously. Especially for guys. They seriously want it, but can barely buy condoms without breaking into a giggle fit.
In my current book, I have to deal with two characters who do have sex. They're a couple, in love, but decide to have sex. It's an important step in their relationship. However, I feel no need to let readers peek under the covers. The scene cuts before clothes come off and returns to those characters in the aftermath.
I think it's especially important in YA that love/sex scenes, if they are shown, NOT be gratuitous or titillating. Teens have sex and no amount of denying it will make it otherwise. But I feel no need to glorify it.
And that's it for me! Take a jaunt over to Laura's blog to see how steamy her books get, and then tomorrow find out what Sarah has to say!