Friday, June 16, 2017

Refresh: Friday Frolics - Perfect Length

Yes, my opening lines are corny...help?


Every story dictates its own length, meaning the story will write as it is required to, we control the story length based on our idea. However, what do you think is the “perfect” story length for our genre? What’s your preference?


Aka

My erotic books vary in length depending on how much ground I want to cover. For me, it is what it is. I think generally I lean towards about 100 pages. The Naughty Royals series seems to work at about that length and I’m finding natural breaking points between the interrelated stories.




Personally, I let the characters dictate the length in the end, although I will set a minimum word count so they know from the get go what the goal is. Also, I split my chapters into three sections, each section should be as close to 1,000 words as possible, with the chapter being at least 3,000. Now a few of my sections may be more than 1K and a few may be smaller, as long as the chapter is 3K I’m happy.

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
 
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Friday, June 9, 2017

Refresh: Friday Frolics - The erotic story arc


Finally Friday.

My writing has taken a toll...the mind struggled to maintain and is now struggling to get back into the flow. Which is a bad lead to today's question:


Every story genre has its own story flow, arc, is there/what is the one for erotic writing?

Let me first state...I love our HOT authors' input, they know their genre and teach me so that hopefully I'll have better questions this year...thanks Musers!



The question oversimplifies the genre. There is no one story arc or even flow as erotica can come in many forms... fantasy, contemporary romantic stories, paranormal, adventure, and plain smut. Each is unique and it the intent is to write a good story, the writer has to pay attention to the tropes that are appropriate for that subgenre. Conversely, in general, all storytelling uses the basic Joseph Campbell heroic myth arc (which is the elegant version of the Lester Dent formula for popular fiction)... the characters have a situation that gets complicated by internal needs or external desires and are forced out of their comfort zone. Their attempts to rectify things seem to work, but actually creates new problems that continue to get worse. Then comes the final straw, where all is doomed to failure... unless. The main characters take actions and either succeed or fail, but the situation is finally resolved.

(adding when asked again...I don't want to miss any of Kurt's insights)

In general, in erotica the arc simply follows changes in circumstance and characters resulting from sexual experiences. That's too simple, but reasonably accurate. Having said that, I think that the absolute best stories in any genre are those that defy all clichés. Authors often react to market forces, which suggest readers expect certain tropes. The truth is that defying the clichés and ignoring tropes is the genesis of great stories. But it’s dangerous, and they have to be done well. The writer has to be willing to fail.




Well, I haven't read enough erotica or erotic romance to decide if there is a separate story flow or arc compared to other genres. But, I suppose that it can't be that much different from non-erotic writing. There's fully developed characters and a plot with a beginning, middle, and end, and of course, one or more crisis to propel the story forward to a conclusion. I'm thinking that the sexual journey of one or two, or more people, is central to such writing. And of course, whether this sexual journey ends with Happy For Now or Happily Ever After. So, I guess, the one thing that separates this writing from other genres, is the importance and impact of the sexual journey.



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
 
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Friday, June 2, 2017

Refresh: Friday Frolics - What is Friday Frolics


Hey, how’s it been going?

Today, thought I would dive a little bit into how that developed into Friday Frolics.

As a publishing house of multiple genres we need to adjust our marketing, promoting based on the target audiences. Some people are uncomfortable with the erotic. Being honest, it’s a tad difficult, uneasy, awkward, and a tad inappropriate for some of our HOTTNESS to show up over where our MG/Tween/Teens/YAs hang out. Which explains our three blogs:

MuseItUp Publishing – our main blog open to every author in our house. Basically, we keep it PG…as much as possible.

MuseItYoung & MuseitYA – our younger audience and all their topics and life experiences for their age. Yes, our HOT authors have occasionally shared their musings on Saturday Morning Musings, but we keep the link closed.

And then there is us: MuseItHOT where our topics and open topic and not quite PG. Truth be told, I’m still a little embarrassed when I ask some questions. Which also makes for great reading and learning for me…helps me learn this genre…and, well, write it. Yes, under a different name, no you don’t know it…I don’t think you do?

Whatever the reason you drop over, we love having you here. Oh, why Friday Frolics for a name?

Friday…end of the “normal” work week. The night for letting loose after a…do I dare…hard week. Sorry, that was a bit much wasn’t it? Which brings us to the word – Frolics…play, romp, frisk, and cavort. You get the picture:

Friday Frolics…a bit of heated fun.

And, please do send me any questions you would like asked of our Musers…onward to our familiar closing:



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
 
Keep Frolicking



Friday, March 17, 2017

Friday Frolics: Erotic without sex?

Hey, Friday Folks!

Hope everyone is keeping well...and warm.

We have a longish...okay, I may have rambled a bit in my explanation...question/muse today:

This idea is from something Kurt wrote in one of his answers:

"It's not grounded in anything except the knowledge that sex sells. I have no trouble with that, because I think writers should write what they want and for their own reasons, and readers should read what appeals to them, it's just a shame that the current climate conflates the erotic with sex.

And maybe that's another topic we could address some day."

I love having to expand my vocabulary...conflates - combine (two or more texts, ideas, etc.) into one.

Now this might not be where Kurt was thinking, but I'm wondering...can you have erotic without sex?


Aka

I’m not feeling that sex sells. I get some feedback on my main series that they love the stories in spite of the sex. With my erotic books, maybe I’m just weird. I write what pleases me but can’t seem to take off with other readers. I imagine you could have erotic without sex but I feel like it’s being a tease – build up without the payoff, so to speak.


NOTE:

In conversation with another writer, they shared a piece which I actually can't (copyright and all that) use here. However, it was hotter than hot without any sex. The mood and attention to a kiss was more than was needed. Look for an audiobook "Born Yesterday" author initials TJ.



If you're talking the mainstream erotic then I do believe readers are expecting sex scenes, graphic to differing degrees of the language. However, erotic readings need not have the actual sex, but the lead-up, the emotions...even the sexual act without going for description of the act. It's all you describe a night of passion to a bunch of girlfriends...his touch, smell, your reaction to these. As with anything, it's what you are looking for.




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
 
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Friday, March 10, 2017

Friday Frolics: Emotional erotic


And a charming Friday to you all.


Thank you for coming by, always appreciated.

Since I'm still, yes, after all this time, still learning our Erotic genre and what questions are best asked, I thoroughly enjoy talking with those who know it better.

This week I asked our authors -

Emotional erotic…it’s more than getting off. What’s your reaction to this? How would you expand on this?


Aka


As far as emotional erotic – sometimes I want my characters to have an emotional connection, and sometimes I just want them to be in the moment and enjoy the erotic encounter. I allude to it in Mavis and Max, but everyone is cool with James Bond getting it on with the hot temptress and then going about his business. The woman that acts like him is looked it as a slut. Double standard and I refuse to follow it.



What now follows is more a conversation between myself and our HOT author KURT DYSAN, Hot author regarding this topic:

Kurt:

I think that erotica without emotion is porn. Emotional connections provide the heart of the story. In fact the emotional connections make the sex erotic.

Me:

Hi, Kurt.

Thanks :)

I agree, but something keeps hitting the back of my head on the quick one-night stand and how there can be a connection which keeps it from just a wham-bam non-emotional...still thinking on wording :)


Kurt:

That would depend totally on the people. If the people connect, even briefly, you can have an emotional story. Perhaps one of them provides something the other has been looking for and by experiencing it, seeing that another person can provide that quality, even for a night, it gives them renewed hope or at least solace. Consider Salinger's story THE DARING YOUNG MAN ON THE FLYING TRAPEZE... a depression-era and rather hopeless, yet emotional story. His story is facing total failure. It could be rewritten in a sexual context.

What I'm saying is that it's easy to pigeonhole erotica because of its focus on sex. But sex is basically one form of human interaction... an incredibly intimate one for most people. Yet even intimacy itself is a relative concept. Some people resent the intrusion of an intimate relationship or just don't do well with it.

Back to your example... the couple in your one-night stand are both looking for an encounter that will give them sexual satisfaction. The emotional aspect of the story involves whether or not they got it. And not getting it, coming away unhappy or dissatisfied, is a profound emotional experience.

What I'm saying is that humans have emotional responses to almost everything they do, including writing emails, and according to psychologists like Nathanial Brandon (THE DISOWNED SELF) we are constantly training and retraining our emotional responses based on our experiences. My terse reply should have said that when a writer ignores the inherent emotional content of an erotic story, he or she is writing porn. When the writer elicits the emotional responses and lays them out for the reader, then it is erotica, or literature.


Me:

Nothing terse at all :)  I hear you about emails and agree, but will add, we also learn (when we keep open minds) how to read those we only correspond with via emails.

I know I've said it before, but I look forward to your replies because of your insight...especially regarding this genre. I'm wondering if you would allow me to use our conversation as the blog posting for this Friday Frolics topic on emotional erotic.

So many...and I have friends who think this...think erotic as just sex or aka porn-stories. They can't see the human connections which are different than their own. Even with my own attempts, I have a married couple who have moved beyond just the two of them, but for them it's not a conflict and some question how can there not be. Do I have that...could I have that...nope. But I have watched documentaries on human relations and those who have and I think I understand.

My stories are light...completely lighthearted silliness, I can't seem to write these characters without laughter involved. But, I know them underneath...only another writer can understand how we can talk as if these characters are real and not think we're completely looney.


Kurt:

You're welcome to use my comments for a blog post. It's a topic that some folks do skim over, never give it much thought, so this could be good.




Again, I do hope we've prompted some thoughts or interest in our HOT genre. Please feel free to share your thoughts, too.

 
Remember, if you have a question or anything you want us to muse about just drop me a line at MuseChrisChat@gmail.com
 
Keep Frolicking