Saturday, 1 August 2009

How many? Care factor?

I finished up editing my Aussie book, Thigh High, due for release in December with Ellora's Cave. Its part of an Aussie series called Going Down Under. Its Aussie themed books written by real Aussie Ellora’s Cave authors. While I always write as I speak, 80% of the time in my books I have to tone down the Aussie stuff due to the fact that most nationalities don't speak as bloody lovely as we Aussies do. Thigh High is set in a small outback town and it’s full on Aussie. But then, that’s who I am. It's how I speak. I have added a glossary though to help translate some of the words.

Anyway, during the editing a friend and I discussed age and sexual experience and what is deemed "normal" for a woman. My personal opinion? Normal is what's normal for the individual. As always I believe age is irreverent regardless what the subject is. Lot's of sexual experience? Happy for you. Hardly any? That's okay. None? I see no problem with that. It annoys me no end when we try to pigeon-hole people into what we think they should be or should have done at this age or that. Why? Are we so perfect that we can pick at others? Well – no.

While all my heroines are smart arse women who have lived life and aren’t about to be messed around by anyone, all of them have different sexual experiences. Some have a hell of a past, others have limited it to one or two lovers, while a couple have been virgins. I think about the character of the heroine. Who is she? How do I want her to be understood by the readers? I don’t think ‘well, she’s 35 and she should have had 7.6 lovers by now ‘cause that’s normal.’ To me, it's irrelevant how many the heroine’s slept with. The main point of the story – the romance – is the romance. It’s about the concept that two people have looked at each other and thought, “This is the one.” Isn’t that why we read romance? We want to believe in that one true love? Is it really important who they have slept or how many?

Romance books cry out for a happy ending. A person or a character’s past is just not important. It’s the trials and tribulations of getting these two people together that is. And I have to ask why a man's sexual experience doesn’t come into question as much as a woman's? I never get comments or hear discussions about who the hero may have slept with or how many at his age and is that normal?

So sex in romance books – she loves him. He loves her. In the end that’s all I need to know.
Be an Amarinda book


Anny Cook said...

Very thoughtful blog. Particularly in the women vs. men category. That always puzzled me.

Sandra Cox said...

Well said.