|Too much sex...?|
|Could've done with more sex, for me...|
Take my rock star romance See You At The Show for example - I've had some people say they'd wished there'd been more sex in that book, and I was annoyed with myself for editing it back. But if I'd left it in its original state would some people then have complained there was too much sex? Not enough/too much - am I ever really going to be able to keep everybody happy? I'm not sure.
|Not enough sex...?|
But now that someone has mentioned that the amount of sex in Striker put them off slightly, well - as a writer you can't help but take that on board. It's just what I do with that now that I have to think about. I'm in the middle of writing 'Extra Time' at the moment, the next book in the Striker Trilogy. And so far the characters haven't exactly been celibate. In fact, I'll let you all into a little secret with this book - there's sex within the first few pages. Might as well kick it all off the way I mean to go on. However, that doesn't mean to say that the book will continue on into one long shag-fest. It won't. It isn't. But it isn't going to be some middle-class aga-saga either. There'll be sex, and there'll be quite a bit of it. So you have been warmed. But how much exactly is something I may have to re-think. Do I back off slightly and tone it all down? To keep one reader happy? Well, there's the question, you see. So far that's the only comment I've had about the amount of sex in Striker, no one else has made any other negative comment about that, in fact, some people have gone in the complete opposite direction and said the sex scenes were fabulous! So, yeah, I'm confused.
However, last week I read a very important piece of advice from someone who works at a big publishing house. Information that I think every writer should take on board - write for yourself, first and foremost. Don't write what you think readers/editors/publishers want to read. Write for yourself, because, if you wouldn't want to read what you've written, then how can you expect anyone else to want to read it, too?
So, I've come to the conclusion that, no, there isn't such a thing as too much sex in books. It's all a matter of personal preference - the old "one man's meat is another man's poison" analogy. And, as long as the book isn't just one long round of bonking, as long as that book has a story to it, something that makes people want to read it regardless of the sex (which I'm glad people are pointing out with Striker - that it does actually have a good story to it), then surely the amount of sex involved is always going to be something that people's attitudes will differ over.
I'll continue to write 'Extra Time' without any changes, for now, and see how things go. Now is not the time to edit, anyway. This is me - this is how I write. And I don't really want to change that.
But I do think that the question of sex in books will always be one of personal preference. Some people like a little, others like a lot. Now, if only I could hit that happy medium...
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