Decorum (BTT)

Yep, it’s that time again, time for the Booking Through Thursday meme:

Do you have “issues” with too much profanity or overly explicit (ahem) “romantic” scenes in books? Or do you take them in stride? Have issues like these ever caused you to close a book? Or do you go looking for more exactly like them? (grin)

Nope. No issues with it at all, as long as, like anything else, it suits the book, plot, and characters and isn’t gratuitous. In fact, I prefer romance novels that don’t tease by blocking us at the bedroom door. I do like my sex scenes to be well-written, however, just like anything else I read. (My favorite erotic romance so far is Colette Gale’s Unmasqued, loosely based on Phantom of the Opera, although I admit I’m not widely-read in the genre.)

This one’s an interesting question, and I expect will see one of the widest divides in answers. I look forward to seeing everyone’s take on it—later this morning, after more sleep (I just love getting woken up in the middle of the night by a barfing cat, don’t you?).


Book Lover

Posted in News & Musings, Writing
14 comments on “Decorum (BTT)
  1. Melody says:

    Thanks for visiting my blog! I totally agree with you on this! I love sexy romances, but I’d also want to see plots in them!!!

    Happy BTT!

  2. Kat says:

    Indeed. Well written scenes add spice to a book with an excellent plot. Happy BTT! 😀

  3. Marianne says:

    Absolutely… but I hate when it’s all sex and no (or little) plot. The sex should be a spice, not the main course *G*.

    Happy BTT!

  4. Alice Teh says:

    Marianne said it well. I echo her thoughts!

    Happy BTT!

  5. Chris says:

    Definitely needs to be part of a real story.

  6. GeraniumCat says:

    I generally prefer books that leave out the steamy stuff, but I wouldn’t want to spoil other people’s fun so I usually skip it. Got to be well-written though.

  7. SciFiChick says:

    If I do have issues with content, I try to skip or skim over parts. If the language is just awful, it may end up ruining the book for me though.

  8. heather says:

    If the language is just awful, it may end up ruining the book for me though.

    I see that as being a problem of writing quality and style, though, rather than the presence or absence of a sex scene. I think this is an issue that sticks out in our minds mostly because erotica is a fairly new genre, and so the definitions of a “good” sex scene are still being worked out.

    I think anyone who wants to write erotic romance should read Alison Kent’s Complete Idiot’s Guide to Writing Erotic Romance—yes, it does come with help for writing decent sex scenes that won’t make people laugh! It also has some fascinating discussions on the different levels of explicitness and different audiences’ expectations and desires.

  9. Stephanie says:

    Sorry to hear about the barfing cat!! That just can’t be good!!

    I’m with you though. I don’t generally offend easily. Not by sex and profanity, anyway. Politics on the other hand, make me want to stand up and shout!! I don’t generally read “Romance” or “Erotica”. I don’t seek them out. Not really my thing, ya know?? But I can’t ever remember putting down a book because I was offended by something.

  10. ScottM says:

    Profanity doesn’t bother me, though most of my fiction uses period or fictional slang… which can be difficult to believe on its own. (OT: I enjoyed this discussion about verisimilitude in SF&F cursing and swearing.)

    For more explicit romance: after the initial startle, I keep reading along. It’s happened a couple of times; I’m reading some good historical fiction (I think), then in comes an explicit sex scene. Andre Norton’s The Shadow of Albion was one of the first that caught me. After I get over the initial “what’s this doing in here?” I continue enjoying the book.

  11. DeN says:

    Looks like everyone’s looking for a plot, first and foremost ^_^ So am I. I don’t offend easily, not anymore at least, but the scenes should be well-written, and the couple in them should at least be in love (or will be). I can’t help it. I’m an idealist. Happy BTT!!

  12. Diane says:

    Yep, as long as it develops or enhances the plot, it works for me too! Diane

  13. Cereal Girl says:

    Yeah, I was expecting a lot of controversy too. So far all the responses I got to mine were against censorship for adults. If only the real world reflected the bookish end of the blogosphere.

  14. I hope you get a better night’s sleep tonight, Heather. It was my day off today, but my animals don’t seem to care. They still expect me to get up at my usual working day time. Ugh.

    I haven’t had much of an opportunity to read many answers for this question yet, but I imagine there probably is a wide spread.

    I am not a big romance novel reader myself, tending to prefer action and suspense rather than romance, but occasionally I’ll pick up a book with a strong romance thread running through it. Like you, I don’t care for gratuitous sex at all, but I don’t mind it if it’s part of the story or the characters’ development. I’ve never read Erotica before, but I imagine someday I might just to get an idea of whether it’s something I’d enjoy or not. You never know. 🙂

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