It's Valentine's Day weekend and here in Ontario it's Family Day Monday, so a long weekend to rest up and stay warm. We've been lucky with a warmer winter this year, but this weekend we'll be seeing some frigid temperatures. Let's see how our HOT Musers can heat us up.
Today we're visiting our sense of taste. What is its importance to writing, to the genre? I keep going back to chocolate and its richness, especially mixed with strawberries.
Taste is important in my stories. Food plays a huge role in many of my scenes and gives the characters something to connect over besides sex. In The Bastard's Key, I write in a French chef as a secondary character, and all the associations the main characters have with him relate to the fantastic tastes of his culinary creations.
In Halfway Out of the Dark, one of the most romantic scenes of the story centers around cinnamon. It is a taste the hero remembers from his childhood and holds a special place in his heart now that it is a rarity. His lover leaves, but wins him back when he returns with cinnamon.
On a more sensual note, taste heightens a character's state of arousal. The salty flavor associated with a light sheen of sweat, or a flavored lubricant, add a spice to an already steamy sex scene.
And, of course, chocolate! Not much is more romantic than an exquisite chocolate melting in one’s mouth, the flavor mixed with a hint of coconut or a whisper of strawberry as you sit by a crackling fire with a glass of wine and a pair of strong arms wrapped around you.
Happy Valentine's Day.
Personally, I haven’t had many scenes where taste was involved. Errr…well…not in the sense of food that is. *smirks* However, there a couple of scenes in a few pieces I’ve been working on recently where the food involved is not of the “normal” variety. By that I mean, the fruits and vegetables aren’t what we’re accustomed to eating, strictly in the realm of fantasy there. In those pieces, I use taste as a part of the world building, making it pretty important. It’s showing the difference in my world compared to the “real” world we live in. The way the characters interact with the food and their personal comparisons between, let’s say, melons and citrus. If a Calanthian Hybrid has ever tasted those fruits that is. lol
Now, there are those teasing scenes, that every romance writer uses between their hero and heroine. You know, the chocolate and champagne, the strawberries and cream, I could go on and on with the different types of food used in romantic settings. Where the taste is enhanced and the food becomes (to me anyway) more flavor filled.
Now, I’m off to finish said scene…okay, maybe it won’t get finished, but it will get farther completed then it was before I started this. Wish me luck!
Our senses and use of them is both a lost ability and one that brings our characters into reality and our stories to life. I'll go back to an interview where an actor talked about another more seasoned actor and how he watched how the more experienced actor would react to the simplest of things. The bourbon may only have been iced tea, but the actor showed the smooth burn down the throat. He savoured the taste, but also looked at the amber colour in the glass in appreciation. For the younger actor it was a realization for future on how we react to something real is what we need to show our audience when it's not real.
For hot scenes, there are more bodily flavours which can be handled with sensual reactions, humour, or out and out wham-bam reactions. These add dimensions to the scene and mood.
Plus, it's fun to explore writing these senses into the stories. It reminds me to slow down and enjoy the little things like chocolate melting in my mouth and over my tongue. Add a raspberry and it's a living orchestra on my tongue that my whole body experiences.
Thank you for dropping over, we appreciate it. Have a fun weekend and hope to you see next week.
Remember, if you have a question or anything you want us to muse about just drop me a line at MuseChrisChat@gmail.com