Write Erotic Romance

Feb 21 22:58 2007 Shalla de Guzman Print This Article

SHALLA CHATS with author Shara Lanel

So,Guest Posting who’s Shara? 

Shara Lanel writes erotic romance for Liquid Silver Books and HeatWave Romance. Her most recent release, PRIMITIVE PASSION, is available at www.LiquidSilverBooks.com. Look for “The Lion’s Den,” coming April 17th at www.heatwaveromance.com, and “GEMINI: Directing Claire” in May at Liquid Silver. 

Shalla: Hi, Shara! Nice of you to join us. 

Shara: Thanks! It’s great to be here. 

Shalla: So let’s get to it—what’s erotic romance? 

Shara: Most of all, it’s great romance stories with well-developed heroes and heroines that you can just fall in love with.

On top of that, erotic romance takes the heat level up a notch, or several notches depending on the story. The love scenes are longer and more explicit. Euphemisms are not used, when the real word will work nicely. And the characters’ sexuality is a more integral part of the story premise. 

Shalla: Where does the line of sexy cross over to erotic? 

Shara: Harder to say with today’s romances. I think even mainstream romances are trending towards more frank language. Erotic to me is when the actual terms are used for body parts, and boundaries are stretched or crossed during the love scenes. You know that all that sexual tension is not going to culminate with a closed bedroom door. The reader will be invited right into the bedroom with the characters. 

Shalla: Where do you get your story ideas? 

Shara: Everywhere. Little nuggets of one thing combine with something else until finally characters or scenes form. Then I pull in even more nuggets. For example, for Enlightened Love, my dad reads books on Buddhism, which triggered the idea of Rick being an ex-Buddhist monk. My sister lives in California, so Kerry is from California. Little things like this all pull together to make a story. 

Shalla: What makes a good, sexy character? Is it all looks? 

Shara: Looks are a very small part of it. I believe we all have our own images of sexy that we superimpose on the characters we read about. What’s important is how the characters react to each other and the situations they’re put in. In each story I write, it’s the situation the characters find themselves in that adds the heat. Like Rick is a virgin who’s exploring sex for the first time. In Primitive Passion, Heath has been alone in the jungle a l-o-n-g time, when Sylvia comes along. In Directing Claire, Claire must act like an experienced porn star to avoid being shot by a mobster. 

Shalla: Who are your readers? Age group? Do you get male readers? 

Shara: I would say in general, e-book readers may be younger, because of the technology involved. I’ve heard there are more male authors in erotic romance, so that may also translate into male readers. I have at least two, my hubby and my crit partner. They really like my steamy stuff ;-) 

Shalla: Any tips on how to make a scene “sizzling hot”? 

Shara: One thing to keep in mind is the range in erotic romance, from highly sensual to BDSM and menages. I think the most important thing is to let go of your internal “mother.” Don’t think of who may read your work and whether you’ll be embarrassed. Don’t think about whether someone will chastise you for using the f-word or the c-words. Explore your own fantasies. Let go. And use the five senses. All of the senses contribute to the experience of sex, so make sure you’ve got them all in there. And take your time with the love scenes—no wham, bam, thank you ma’am. Readers of erotic romance want it to last. 

Shalla: Any tips on how to mix “erotic’ and “funny”? 

Shara: Hmm. My stories tend to lean towards the serious. However, there are many writers out there who successfully mix humor with erotic. Dakota Cassidy and Mary Janice Davidson are two that come to mind. It’s fun to laugh during sex, to know that sometimes it’s a bit ridiculous trying to fit part A into slot B. If you naturally tend to write humor, don’t be afraid to put that into your sex scenes as well. 

Shalla: Lastly, what do you think of erotic romance novels? 

Shara: I love them, of course! Some of my faves are by Emma Holly, Jodi Lynn Copeland, and Leigh Wyndfield. I hate reading books that close the bedroom door. I want to be there when all that terrific sexual tension culminates in flames. 

Shalla: Thanks! For more on Shara Lanel, please visit her web site www.sharalanel.com 

Virtual fireworks and champagne wishes to you, Shara. We at Shalla Chats send our love. Thanks for talking with us.

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About Article Author

Shalla de Guzman
Shalla de Guzman

Shalla DeGuzman is President of The ShalladeGuzman Writers Group where she interviews literary agents, publishers, editors, etc. For more on Shalla: www.shalladeguzman.com

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