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Romance, Free Books, and Penises

I hope my fellow Americans have recovered from Thanksgiving--at my house, there's still no end in sight to all the leftovers--and I hope we're all starting to feel a little of that holiday spirit.

Now, few questions for all of ya'll. :)

First, if you like romance novels, or if you're like me and you're not sure you like romance novels but you can't pass up a free book, Harlequin Books is celebrating their 60th anniversary by making 16 ebooks available for free download.

Second, have you seen this plot? *holds up milk carton with fanfic on the back* I'm looking for a story that revolves around one of the characters secretly writing romance novels. I know I've read it, and I think the character in question was either Severus, Remus, or Draco. It may have been slash, but then again, maybe it wasn't. I have a plot bunny, one that keeps nibbling at me and making me giggle inappropriately, and it sprang into my head so fully formed, I'm having a hard time believing I thought it up on my own.

Third, drcjsnider made a post about a yucky purple-headed, bulgy-veined penis description in a novel, and it has me wondering. How do you choose to write about the penis during a sex scene? Does the opening of a character's pants trigger a tasteful fade-to-black in your writing, or do you plunge right in *snerk* and go for the veiny, leaky, purpley mushroom head approach to penises? What words do you like? What words do you hate? As a reader, what really turns you off?

As for me, I'm conservative and rather prim in my word choices. I don't blink at erection, cock, or penis, but please spare me from "throbbing staff" or "cum-spouting fountain of love" (Yes. I've seen it, and now I can't ever un-see it...and neither can you.) On the other end of the spectrum, I don't particularly care for terms straight out of a textbook, such as "corpus spongiosum" or "epididymis," either. I know rarely write explicit sex scenes, but when I do, I think I focus more on the mechanics of sex than descriptions of anatomy, especially male anatomy, and I wonder if my writing suffers for it.

Comments

Oh for Christ's sake, now I need to go buy me some brain bleach. Will Fedex it to you when I'm done.

Now you've started me a crack!bunny with Snape tasked to teach sex ed, and a la Monty Python, he screws his wife in front of the class, using words like "corpus spongiosum" and "mons" and "ejaculate" (the noun).

More brain bleach needed.
Nothing beats "beef curtains".

Can you get me some brain bleach too???? PLEASE?
Oh, God. Yuck.

Brain bleach all around.
I hope I didn't scar you. *pets corianderpie* May your brain bleaching be successful (I've had no luck with it.)

I'm totally with you on the c-word. Yuck!

You do a great job of being titillating without being porny. :) I wish all writers had the same balance.
I've downloaded all those harlequins and read a few of them... they are great when you want to spend a couple of hours in romance land :)

I think my scenes are more mechanical... although I'm sure I have some yuck stuff in there... definitely nothing as bad as spouting fountain of love though!

BTW, great job of the Rose/Scorpius drabble win last week! It was my favorite.
Thank you. I was surprised by the win since I find Ron hard to write.

For the record, I've never read anything in your writing that I would describe as "yuck stuff." Not even close. :)