You can’t really get very far in erotica without talking about attraction. So, I thought for my inaugural A-Z post, I’d talk about attraction. Or ‘Boy he’s/she’s hot!’
Hotness on a scale
Part of the reason we, as a group, think it’s a great idea each to blog is we’ve got a different idea of what we’re turned on by. Me, it’s eyes, and hands. Expressive eyes, and just as expressive hands. Behind that, it’s the scent of a guy (or girl), how they move, how they speak. Intelligence is a huge turn-on for me.
Other people have other turn-ons – and the great thing about that is even if you write about something that doesn’t turn you on specifically, it will hit home with others. It’s important though to remember a couple of things when talking about attraction, hottness and talking about hotties.
Pain is and isn’t a turn on
One of the rookie mistakes many writers make, when talking about BDSM is assuming that the primary turn-on is pain. And in a few rare cases, it is. But a lot of the time, in my opinion at least, BDSM is about control, or lack of control. So while there is an element of enjoying pain, and using it as an adrenaline surge, it’s important to remember that if your protagonist is into that sort of thing, it’s not actually all there is to it.
BDSM actually stands for Bondage and domination (BD), Dom/Sub (DS) and sadomasochism (SM), so pain falls into the very last category. And while the endorphins generated are also part of it, the pain inflicted is all about trust – you trust your lover not to take it too far, and that’s why the pain is enjoyable. There’s always the safe word.
A good post on this, although it mentions the dreaded book, is here. The two big keys here are that it’s not all about pain, and it’s not all about the dominant being in control. Not always.
And that bottom line is where all erotica starts and ends. Being safe, being in or out of control, being turned on. It’s all about trust. Your readers trust you, you can take them anywhere or everywhere.
It’s all about what it does in our head
Though I’ve listed some things about what I think are the ‘hottie’ factor, it’s actually all about what’s in your head. It’s about what works for you. Tapping that, as an erotica writer, is the key to success. Finding what you think turns you and others on will make your fiction spark, sizzle and sell.
What do you think? What’s your turn-on?