This is Part 3 of Smut 101.
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The entire text is available as a PDF or a Google Doc.
This part contains the following chapters:
Popping Your Cherry: Your First Smut Fic
Fic Archives & Communities
Popping Your Cherry: Your First Smut Fic
Let's assume you've done your homework. You've read lots of smut, you know what you like, and you've given some thought to the kind of story you want to write. So where do you start?
Fortunately, a sex scene has a natural progression (foreplay, the act, climax, closure) that you can build on and if you just take it one step at a time you'll be done in no time. The easiest way I have found to do this is to build the scene gradually through layers.
Your first step is to decide what is going to happen in your scene. An example of this would be Grissom and Sara have sex in front of a mirror. Then you need to give your scene a context in their relationship (or lack of relationship depending on what you are writing). For my example scene, the context is Sara letting Grissom know that she found his letter. His reaction to that is a desire to show her how he sees her when they are together. Action->Reaction comes into play on every level of your story.
Your second step would then be to map out what is going to happen in the scene. This means you have to decide the kind of sex your characters are going to have and who is going to do what to whom. (Remember the outline we talked about above. This is where it would come into play.) In my example, I intend for Grissom to take Sara from behind. You need to know this to write it so it’s important to make a decision, and you can always change it if your characters surprise you along the way. After you know what is going to happen in the scene, you write out a rough sketch of the scene. At this point, try to just write and not edit. It doesn’t matter if you use the same word fourteen times. You’ll have time to fix that in the revision process.
Your third step is to go through your rough draft and start to layer in the detail. You don’t have to do this all at once. Maybe one time through you concentrate on Sara, then Grissom on the second time and the third time you look at how they are acting and reacting to each other. Revision doesn’t have to be this huge thing if you break it up in to small chunks. Set a timer for 15 minutes and work at it that way. At this point, I also start to refine and tighten the dialogue. At any point in this process, you may want to send a draft to your beta and have her give it a few read throughs. The genius of a beta is that they have distance from your story, and can sometimes give you some much needed perspective.
Below, I have included two versions of a piece of the mirror sex scene that I have used as an example--one from the first draft, and one from a progressive draft.
He led her over to the dresser, turning her so that she was facing the mirror. “I want you to see what I see.” He trailed two fingers along the side of her face, bringing them under her chin.
She found his gaze in the mirror, and felt a sudden flush throughout her body as the heat she found there.
Several drafts later, and after some beta input, here's the same scene snippet:
She stopped beside the bed, but he swung her around in his arms, leading her over to the dresser. He answered her questioning look with a kiss, turning her around in his arms so that she was facing the mirror, and he was standing behind her.
He trailed two fingers along the side of her face, bringing them under her chin as he met her gaze in the mirror. “I want you to see what I see when I make love to you.”
She felt a rush of heat travel through her as his meaning became clear. Looking into the glass, she was embarrassed at the nakedness of the emotion she saw on her own face, she tried to turn away, but he held her close to him.
The same basic structure exists in the second version; it's just been fleshed out with more detail.
A few final words here, on endings and how to write a good one. As I have mentioned previously in this guide, the best way to connect your reader to your characters is to show them evolving throughout your story. The evolution does not have to be epic, you don’t have to save anyone’s soul or turn Ecklie’s black heart to gold. The only thing you need to do is bring your story full circle.
Using the mirror fic as an example, the basis for that fic was Sara letting Grissom know she found the letter, in which he admits he has a hard time expressing his feelings for her and no matter where she is, part of her is always with him. The focus of the story then is Grissom wanting Sara to see how he loves her. He does this by making love to her in front of a mirror. However, in order to show his character’s evolution, he needs to say the words that often seem to elude him.
“I always knew.” She drew her thumb across his bottom lip. “Even when you didn’t.” She felt his hand curl around hers and she twined her fingers with his. When his mouth found hers, his kiss held a new promise, and she knew that the letter was only the beginning.
When you are thinking about how to end your story, just remember to look at your beginning and bring your story’s focus right back to the issue that brought your characters together.
You can find the full text of the story Words Fail at Geekfiction.
Sex, when it's good, is intense. It's intense to have it, to read it, and to write it. By mapping out your framework first, you can help alleviate some of the stress of getting it right the first time. Once you have your sequence of action, you can go back through and fancy it up a bit. If you get stuck, sit back, close your eyes and imagine the scene unfolding before you. Do this whenever you get stuck throughout the writing process. Put yourself in the middle of the scene, imagine how it might feel to be your character. If you give it time and attention, a scene will grow in your mind and all the tiny little details will begin to fill in as you spend more time with your story.
Sextutor.com - Sex Tutor offers accurate, clearly written, helpful sex advice.
Wiki After Dark – Sex wiki, positions, technique and more.
The-clitoris.com - Everything you ever wanted to know about the Clitoris and Female Sexuality.
Minotaur’s Sex Tips for Slash Writers – I think that says it all
Usingenglish.com – Particularly helpful for non-native speakers writing in English
Alan Cooper’s Homonym List – Homonyms are words that are pronounced the same but are spelled differently and have different meanings. Example: carrot and carat. Go here to check if you are unsure you’ve used the correct word.
Common Errors in English – Massive list of misused words and how to use them correctly. Covers grammar as well.
CSI Forensics : From Out of the Lab – CSI Fic Archive
GSR Fic Find: Smut – Grissom & Sara smut
The Frisked and Conquered…CSI Stories – Femslash Archive. Has some exclusive stories.
CSI Transcripts – If you look at the menu on the left of the screen, you will see links to all three CSIs.
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne & Dave King
This book is worth its weight in gold. You can get it at the library too. Read it, it will make you a better writer and a formidable beta!
Elements of Style by Strunk & White
A classic you should own if you don’t. Very easy to find at the library. Online Version.
The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
I would never miss a chance to recommend this book (or anything else she’s written.) If you have ever had writer’s block, this is the cure.
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