Welcome to my stop on the Battle Born Love blog tour, hosted by Samantha at CLP Blog Tours! Today I have a guest post and excerpt from Lynda's contemporary romance. Stop by Lynda's tour page for a chance to win an Amazon gift card!
Here's a little bit about the book:
Title: Battle Born Love
Author: Lynda Bailey
Published: March 2, 2012
LOVE BORN FROM BATTLE. . .
Spirited repo owner Rory Dawson agrees to be what she isn't--the girlfriend of a handsome banker--in order to save her father from a prison sentence. Now Pop is safe, but is her heart?
Kane Williams has made a deal with a most provocative devil in hopes of securing a coveted promotion. All his life Kane has endeavored to be the best, to erase the failure of his father. Will years of work be forfeited for a woman, albeit the sexiest one he's ever known?
From opposite sides of the tracks, Rory and Kane forge an unlikely friendship. Soon, that friendship becomes a steamy relationship. Through trial and pain, they battle to have the love of a lifetime.
Elements of a Romantic (aka Love) Scene
Thank you, Lisa, for hosting me at Lost in Literature! Today I’d like to talk about what I think goes into making a romantic scene. Whether you’re writing a sweet inspiration romance or a hardcore BDSM story, an author needs to utilize the five senses in order to bring a love scene to life.
Let’s take touch. The standard “firmness of his lips” and “silkiness of her skin” are fine. But what else are the characters touching—besides each other? J Where is the scene taking place? On a bed? On a sofa? In a forest? Or maybe a barn? If you’re writing an extremely sensual scene and the woman is kneeling on the floor, what kind of floor is it? Carpeted? Wood? Dirt? If your story is a romantic comedy, perhaps she’s getting rug burn or thorns are poking her skin.
What about the sense of smell? The characters will, of course, smell the faint remnants of each other’s shampoo or mouthwash. But what else? Are they outside, in a gazebo, during a spring shower? How does wet skin smell? (And let’s try to make it smell nice!) Or are they in the backroom of a restaurant? Will there be the aroma of yeast flour and vanilla in the air?
I think the sense of taste goes hand in glove with smell. Your hero not only smells her mint toothpaste, he also tastes it. What else can the characters taste? The saltiness of sweaty skin or the lingering flavor of wine in a kiss?
If you’re writing a romantic suspense, how can the sense of hearing ramp up the tension? Are the characters locked in a desperate embrace, hearing the sirens of an approaching air raid? How will they act/react if it’s thought this will be their last time together? On the opposite end, what if your characters are on floor pillows in front of a cozy fireplace? Reminding the reader of a crackling fire will help to reinforce that the scene is leisurely and unhurried.
Lastly, the sense of sight. Obviously the characters see each other, but how well? What kind of lighting is in the scene? Is the sun blazing down or is it filtered through the leaves of trees? Is there waning sunlight streaking through half-closed blinds or the harsh, bluish glare of overhead fluorescent lights? Is there candlelight? Firelight? What else might the characters see? A clock? Is time crucial to one of them? Are other people in the scene, whether bystanders or participants? How will many eyes watching her affect the hero/heroine?
Now I’m not suggesting that the external environment is the priority in a love scene. The characters are the priority. However, it’s also important to remember the surroundings. In my opinion, the more “seeing, hearing, touching, tasting and smelling” that an author brings to a love scene (or any scene for that matter), the more invested the reader will be in your story. Do you agree or not? I’d love to hear your take.
Thanks again to Lisa and Lost in Literature for letting me hang out today!
He shifted in his seat. “We don’t have to be compatible. This isn’t a real relationship."
“But I have to be all goo-goo eyed over you, right? How can I do that if I don’t know what it’s like to kiss you?”
“Don’t be ridiculous,” he grumbled. “I don’t expect you to be goo-goo eyed over me.”
His protest might have sounded convincing if his voice didn’t carry the rough edge of desire. She leaned across the center console. “What’s the matter?” she goaded.
A muscle jumped in his cheek. “No.”
She moved in as close as she could, given the bucket seats. The clean scent of aftershave surrounded her. After working all day, Kane still smelled like he’d just stepped from a shower. She placed a hand on his leg and he jerked. She bit back a grin. “Then prove it.”
A growl rumbled in his chest. Baiting this guy probably wasn’t a good idea, but she wanted to crack his perfect, I’m-in control-of-everything exterior. She wanted a reaction from him.
She leaned closer, her hand smoothing down his muscled leg. She came to within a hair’s breadth of his mouth, and waited.
With each passing second, the hard plastic of the seatbelt receptor dug deeper into her hip and her confidence waned. When it became humiliatingly clear he had no intention of kissing her, she rolled a shoulder in hopes of appearing nonchalant. “Suit yourself.” She settled back into the passenger seat.
An irate snarl resounded in the small interior, shrinking it further. In the next instant, Kane hauled her across the console and into an embrace of banded steel. He crushed his mouth to hers, plunging his tongue forward. The ferocity of his kiss stunned her, but she recovered fast.
She snaked her arms around his neck and thrust her tongue into his mouth in a battle for dominance. A groan rumbled in his chest and against her breasts. His stubble abraded her skin and he curled his hand around to hold her head immobile so he could deepen the kiss.
Tentacles of heat lashed through Rory’s belly at the fierce mating of their mouths. Her nipples beaded to stiff, aching points. Liquid fire flowed through her veins.
This was not what she had expected, this animalistic, uncultivated reaction. She’d wanted a reaction from him and she got one. In spades.
As quickly as the storm started, Kane ended it. He wrenched away from her, his gasps for air mixing with hers. Draped across his lap, she rested her forehead against his chin and worked to steady her erratic pulse. By inches, his tight embrace loosened. He eased her back into the passenger seat and she pulled shaky fingers through her hair.
He switched off the heater with a cough. “Guess I proved it.”
The raspy sound of his voice sent a shiver down her spine. She touched a finger to her throbbing lips. No doubt they’d be swollen and bruised. “Guess you did.”
I’ve always loved stories, especially romances. For me the only thing better than reading a romance is writing one. That and drinking red wine while eating dark chocolate. My manuscripts have been finalists in major writing contests, including the 2010 RWA Golden Heart®.
I live in Reno with my husband of thirty years and our two pampered pooches. Please visit me at www.lyndabailey.net. Or drop me an email Lynda@lyndabailey.net.