Cassandra Carr Guest Post: Behind-the-scenes of a sex scene

*Morning Everyone, Nikki here! Today, I’d like to hand the reins over to Cassandra Carr. She is an awesome erotic romance author I recently met on Twitter (of course, cuz that’s where I hang out)…welcome Cassandra!*

Behind-the-scenes of a sex scene

Quick poll: how many times have you read a sex scene and thought to yourself, “Yes, please! I’d like to order me one o’ those!” Did you ever stop to think about how that scene came to be. Why was it placed in that location in the book? How did the author decide what to have our intrepid hero and heroine do?

Well, lucky for you, I’m here to answer some of those questions!

So first – how does an author know where to place a sex scene? For me, this is surprisingly organic. I’m not a plotter – I don’t have billboards full of index cards or a complicated scene spreadsheet. My characters have sex when it makes sense for them to have sex. Whether that’s early in the book, early in the day – whatever – as long as it works for the story, I go with it.

All right, so I’ve decided my characters should get busy. What should they do? Well, that depends on what type of romance you write. A women’s fiction book will probably gloss over details and make the scene itself short, whereas an erotic romance will likely have plentiful, graphic, detailed sex scenes. Sex scenes in books like that have to be different from each other or the reader is going to get bored. Insert Tab A into Slot B just doesn’t cut it anymore. Readers expect interesting, inventive sex and if you don’t have it your book will be hurled across the room. Trust me, no author wants that…

What do you feel are the components of a truly exceptional sex scene?

Cassandra Carr lives in Western New York with her husband, Inspiration, and her daughter, Too Cute for Words. When not writing she enjoys watching hockey and hanging out on Twitter. Her debut novel, Talk to Me, was released by Loose Id on March 22, 2011. For more information about Cassandra, check out her website at, “like” her Facebook fan page at or follow her on Twitter at

Amanda Racette Twentyfive
writing as Cassandra Carr

Talk to Me, out now from Loose Id!

Uniform Behaviour, out now from Andrews UK!

Writer website:


  1. I’m with you, Cassandra, it can’t be just insert tab A into slot B. There also has to move the story forward. It can’t just be sex for the sake of sex. As for changing the actual scene up, I once asked my sister if she had any idea how hard it was to make a sex scene different for each situation and couple. She mocked me of course, but it’s damned hard!

    Great post!

    1. Danica,

      I’ve sat at my laptop with my fingers poised over the keys and said, “What can they do differently? Shower? Outside? Clothed? Hanging upside-down from the chandelier?” It really is hard! Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I think the best sex scenes actually draw the reader into the moment to where you are just as breathless and anxious as the characters. It’s very visual with just enough details to tantalize. The scene should have the tempo of sex…teasing and faster then backing off and faster to the crescendo. The reader should be breathless and a little weak after and want to read it again immediately possibly a couple of times with no loss of impact…the butterflies swirling everywhere. Then that scene is bookmarked or dog eared to experience again another time because that is what a reader wants…a mind blowing experience.

    1. Heather –

      I totally agree. Sometimes when I’m trying to figure out where to go with a book and I’m getting stuck I read back through some of my personal favorites and it always helps. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Cassandra, Great post on a touchy subject. I’m with you let the sex happen when and where it should and keep it interesting. I naturally tend to write in 1st person present tense and IMHO, it brings the reader right into the story and the action. When I was younger I was a newspaper reporter and my editor had this 1 major rule, unforgivable sin.. Never, ever turn in a boring story. You can have misspelled words, leave out important info, but never a boring story. not even an obituary, every story had to be interesting. So over the years, this golden rule of writting has stayed with me. In some instances, I think writing an interesing obituary or city council meeting is easier than writing an exciting erotic sex scene, especially if there are multiple sex scenes in the story.

    1. GW – I think obits can be fascinating. Even ordinary people can lead extraordinary lives. The key is finding the extraordinary thing about an ordinary person. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Yes, I think the sex scene should flow naturally from the story. That way it has the emotion behind it and, believe me ladies, it’s the emotion that draws us in. Because we’ve all been in love and it’s a reliving of that emotional, highly charged sex that draws us in.

    1. Cindy – I once heard that the point of romance novels was to experience the vicarious thrill of falling in love again. I think it’s completely true.

  5. Great post! I reviewed Uniform Behaviour and thought it was great so I need to go looking for Talk to Me and give it a read! Thanks for hosting!

  6. My favorite sex scenes make me want to read them again…and again, and again. Straight mechanics doesn’t work. When I’m writing sex, I’m constantly asking myself, “How does it feel?” If the reader can feel it, it’s good for them too.

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