10 Essentials for Writing Love Scenes – The Writer’s Diary

10 Essentials for Writing Love Scenes

Writing love scenes can be really tricky. You want readers to feel what the characters are feeling, but also keep the story moving forward. It’s not just about what happens physically, but more about the feelings and connection between the two people.

There are some rules you must follow to achieve that. I will share them in the following sections.

10. Know Your Characters

Know Characters from Your Story

The most important part of writing a good love scene is understanding the people involved. Characters are real humans with their own hopes, worries, and histories. Before writing about intimacy, it’s best to learn who your characters really are inside.

Think about what each person wants at that moment, how they feel about each other and any past relationships that may shape how they show affection now. Paying attention to these details helps readers connect with your characters and feel what they’re feeling.

9. Set the Scene

The location where intimacy happens matters a lot more than you might think. It should give clues about the kind of relationship these characters have and how they’re feeling emotionally at this time.

Consider whether being alone together on the beach or at home might affect how comfortable or nervous they feel. Use descriptive words to help readers picture the scene and understand the characters’ experience in that setting.

8. Build That Tension

Tension between partners

Building up tension is important so readers can feel the excitement and awkwardness along with your characters. That feeling of wanting to be close but being afraid can come through in how they talk together, what they think but don’t say, or little gestures full of meaning.

It’s good to have some back-and-forth so neither character seems too eager or reluctant. This will make their desire for each other feel very real despite any doubts getting in the way.

7. Make it Real

For a love scene to feel genuine, the emotions shown need to ring true for who your characters are and what they’ve faced together in the story so far. Readers can spot fake feelings from a mile away. Whether it’s deep love, gentle affection, or messy complicated feelings, portraying them with sincerity is key.

6. Share Their Desires

Communication in Relationship

Love scenes are often about desires coming to light. But being direct has to fit how your characters actually communicate, through what they say out loud, physical signs, and private thoughts. How they share longing reveals parts of their personalities and relationships. Subtle clues can say a lot too.

5. Must be Consensual

For intimacy to feel meaningful, both people need to truly want to be with each other in that moment. Saying it with clear consent sets the right tone, but small touches throughout show continuing care for each other’s experience. Power imbalances due to age or status call for thoughtful handling to avoid coming across as one-sided or taking advantage.

4. Balance Description and Imagination

Balance Description and Imagination

When writing about physical affection, finding the sweet spot between what’s directly depicted and what’s left for readers to picture themselves is important. Going into too much detail can distract from the heart of the moment, while being too vague risks losing someone in the story. Sensory clues help set the scene while leaving some mystery to engage the imagination.

3. The Story Goes On

For a love scene to truly count, it has to connect to the larger tale being told. It should reveal something deeper about the characters or change something within the plot. Make sure the moment pushes the narrative forward in a meaningful way and isn’t just there for its own sake.

2. Stay in Genre

Different types of reads come with differing expectations of intimate scenes. A romance likely calls for more emphasis compared to a fantasy. But within reason, stretching conventions can be exciting – just make sure to ground it in understanding what your particular readers signed up for.

1. After the Final Kiss

Story after the kiss

Finally, don’t forget about the aftermath. How does this experience affect the people and their relationships now? There may be emotional or practical consequences to reckon with. Tying up loose ends shows your characters’ depth and keeps the story moving ahead.

The End

In the end, creating truly meaningful moments of love and intimacy between characters takes real thoughtfulness, empathy, and skill. While challenging, focusing on what’s real for the people involved, how the setting and story shape their experience, and keeping readers invested, can result in scenes that delight as much as they teach us about human connection.

Most of all, remember your characters are people first. If you seek to understand them, respect their experiences, and do right by their journey together, your words might just help others feel a little less alone. And really, what better gift in this life than that?

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