Masala Monday

When ordering curry, do you have a 'fall back' dish?  As in, -can't decide, last person to order and smiley waiter is tap-tap-tapping his pen on his notepad, so I'll just have...'the masala please?' You hand back the menu satisfied you finally made a decision, bring your chilled glass of wine to your lips, only to have the waiter raise his eyebrows..."Will you be wanting anything else with that, Ma'am? Mango Chutney, Tomato Chutney, Raita, Spicy Lime Chutney?

Eating is like writing, cooking is like blogging, food is, you know chocolate?  Chocolate is like sex...  There's so much choice, you can never make up your mind, sometimes you want it spicy, other times, maybe extra coriander, or just...well, vanilla with a dash of cinnamon? * Pensive expression * Are we still talking curry? Yes! No! Maybe?  

Truth is, firstly - I've been working on the 'love scenes' lately, and surprisingly I've made myself blush...did I write that?  It's a little spicy!  So I need to add a little mango lassi, tone it down.  Secondly, I have been lucky enough to win an opportunity for two critiques, one being a critique of a 'love scene'.  I know -great! Right?  So why has it had this profound effect on me?  On a loop, every couple of hours I feel like this...

1.  I just want to edit a certain scene to death.  Edit to perfection, and then some more...but isn't that the point of the critique from an expert?

2.  Risk the ultimate embarrassment... 'You're good, but like, have you tried it this way? Much better. Yes!'

3.  It literally scares the 'pants off me'.  Am I ready for someone else to read this scene? *Faints*

4.  Um, pick the most tame of the scenes?  So what if it's just a's a pretty damn hot one. 

5.  Hot-Cold-sweat...

So, you see - curry, sex scenes, cooking, writing, chocolate,'s all the same really.  Tell me though, how often do you edit-re-edit-edit- a love scene before you are satisfied? Ahem, and I didn't mean it that way.  Really...

A/N:  Hello Everyone! Hope you are all enjoying Monday!  My post is a little later than anticipated, things got a little crazy in a parallel universe today, but hey ho - I'm happy.  Hope you are too!  I shall be working on edits this week, am almost finished the second draft of my main WIP.  Have a lovely week!


  1. love scenes can be tricky; you want them to come off as realistic, but too realstic! I mean we don't need ALL the sound effects right? The trouble is getting it just right.

  2. The first one i wrote has been edited about 20 times. They get easier. Later on they always started out spicier than they ended up. BUT I'd rather be toning down then trying to figure out a way to add some more in later on.

    Just wait til you get to read it out loud, IF you get the chance...

  3. hard for me to write them and not make them all sound the same. i try to get into a character's head a little during sex, and try to not describe every single thing they do. then it's just reporting.

  4. i love your new profile picture, by the way.

  5. Since I write YA, I tend to go light on any love scenes. Not too much spice. :) Good luck with the critique!

  6. Sex scenes are difficult because there is the ever present danger of cliche. If it were me, I think I would edit it until it is the best it can be especially in light of a critique. I understand your nervousness regarding the critique though- it's tough to put yourself in the line of fire. You will most likely hear something you don't want to hear but it should be (and I emphasize SHOULD BE) invaluable to your work. Good luck and HAPPY WRITING!!!

  7. They're so difficult to write. At times it seems like write, rewrite, edit, trash, repeat. I don't think I've gotten one right yet. I need help.

  8. Rats. Forgot to say how much I like your new photo. Beautiful.

  9. he he he I must be different. Sometimes i write a sex scene and immediately know am not feeling it. Sometimes i have no clue on how to fix it so i move on with the story. I never stress about it I eventually get it or have my CP look at it so she can see what's wrong with it.

  10. MsH, thank you, not sure we want realism either. Sound effects? Yup, agreed. Absolutely, pretty sure I don't have those in mine... ;-)

    Jolene, I like your thinking. Better to start spicy and tone it down, at least there's something to work with. I shall read aloud, I do that...though it makes me cringe at times, its a worthy exercise.

    Michelle, good point. Get inside their heads, they are always inside mine! ;-) Aw, and thanks re new pic. It was time to stop hiding behind the sunnies.

    Meredith, thank you dear lady!

    Danette, hello! Absolutely, all critiquing should be constructive right? I shall don my Batgirl cape to protect me! ;-)

    Carol, Hmm - they can be hard (no pun intended). Perhaps, the hardest scene for me to write was the first one with my MC, it took me - LIKE forever, I recall blogging about it. Keep at it though, I think Michelle's advice is good, 'get inside their heads', feel what they feel and write it down, then edit it to death. ;-) My approach.
    And, thank you. *blushes* I kinda like my 'antique-wash-pop-art' pic, it'll be there until I bribe my brother into taking a 'proper' one for me. ;-)

    Jo, thanks hun. I love how you don't stress about, you can write if under pressure. CP's are invaluable!! I'm always on the lookout. ;-)

  11. You made me laugh at the end. Nice picture!

  12. LOL! Sex, it's so personal...I write MGs so I my love scenes are basically non-existent.

  13. It took my a while to write the obligatory sex scene. I ended up making it short and sweet, the condensed version. Not that its a bad scene, it just doesn't go on page after page after page.

  14. It's been quite awhile since I wrote a love scene. In fact, in my latest work, the only thing the couple does is kiss - but it's not a romance novel, so I guess that's ok. :-)

  15. LOL. I write YA so my love scenes (if any) tend to just hint that something happened and leave it at that. I read YA too so that's enough for me!

  16. Liza, am very pleased you enjoyed! ;-) And thank you!

    Bish, it's as up close and personal as you can get, well...physically. ;-) We won't delve into the deep psyche.

    Stephen, I have to say - and maybe its just me, I'm yet to meet a male author who's written a long sex scene. Lordy, I can't believe how much I am writing that word today. SEX. I think if short and sweet is good too, it really depends on the style of the book too right? Thanks so much for stopping by! ;-)

    Melissa, a kiss - can be the hottest thing, in my books. ;-)

    Beth, definitely depends on the genre, I do love YA. Sometimes just hinting is enough. thanks! ;-)

  17. Hahaha I think a love scene is just another part of a book. As long as it tells me something about the characters involved, I'm happy with it. Must say that writing one like that is a very tricky task.

    I've only ever written one (quite recently, actually) and definitely blushed more than once, but I'm happy with the overall effect. I will probably edit the lead-up before I touch the scene. We'll see.


    Love the new profile pic, by the way.

  18. Hello!
    Argh If blogging is like cooking then I'm screwed - I'm officially banned from the kitchen after trying to kill us off with a bad fruit salad!!!

    When I wrote my first ever WIP, I ended up taking every single love scene ALL THE WAY in the writing, so that I knew that every single one of them would have to be edited back... I have enough extra material to start my own erotica franchise -oops!
    Great post!

  19. Misha, great, great point, 'as long as it tells me something about the character...' - I must get this in mind whilst editing, it will save me alot of time! And thank you too, I'm kinda digging the pic now. ;-)

    Laura, Hahaha! I've done exactly that, written a couple of scenes, one in particular 'all the way', and now - I could probably have an erotica chapter collection to, for another book?
    Don't worry about cooking, as they say...practice makes can always, eat out? ;-)

  20. Found you from the A-Z Blogging Challenge, it sounds like it’s going to be so much fun and I can’t wait to get started!! I’m now following your blog on GFC and I hope you have a chance to check out my blog and maybe follow me back!!

  21. I'm liking the curry... love scene analogy...

    Ideally, if you're going to have a love scene, why not go for the extra oomph, an extra dose of spice... and yeah, editing is good, but sometimes you have to remember that love should be a little messy... I felt so dirty writing this comment. Now I'm off to clean my kitchen and re-label my spices.

  22. Over and over and over again! I try to make it just right, which takes forever.

    And I love chicken korma. That's my fall back!

  23. Love the analogy, though I don't think I'll be writing any love scenes soon. This is probably good since I write children's books. :)

  24. Monica, lovely to 'meet' you - welcome! And thank you for the follow!

    Austin, this is a good strategy, we like that. I hope you re-labelled all your spices? Thanks so much for the follow too.

    Talli, I love your fall back dish! ;-) Its amazing how long we can spend on one scene only to cull it right back in the end.

    Nutschell, thanks! And, yes -its a good thing you don't write these for your genre!! ;-D

  25. nice blog to stumble on; I'm definitely following. Plus your Liz Taylor post is much better than mine

  26. David, welcome! Thank you. And, I shall have to pop over to your blog to check out your Liz Taylor post!

  27. I'm thinking that what you edit out might also be very interesting to read. With all the references to cooking, cooking instructions are coming to mind...the kitchen might be a good place to get ideas, and I will not venture any further with that.

  28. I find it easier to give my characters a little privacy with their intimacy. I'll show the stuff leading towards the bedroom, then fade to black and then pick it up the next morning. Tame, I know, but unless there's a love triangle about to explode, this is what works for me.

  29. I don't get a lot of sex in my books 'cause their for the youngens. But I did have some in my coming of age first draft, and I just went to town, then freaked out that someone might read it.

    Wagging Tales - Blog for Writers


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