It’s a penis, all right? Just another part of anatomy, and there’s no reason to make it sound more glamorous than it is.
This month on Romancing a Blog we’re talking about the craft of writing romance, and this week, I’m talking about the horribly over-used words for body parts that have crept into romance lore.
I’m going to call on my friend, Suzanne Brockmann, for this one. (Disclaimer: she’s not my friend in real life, but in my head, we’re totally BFFs.) Suz was the first romance novelist that I encountered in my very deep and wide readings of romance novels that was not afraid to use the word cock. As a writer, I was amazed by this. She didn’t depend on the easy to use and easy to understand language of the romance novel love scene. She called it what it was instead, and in so doing, she set herself apart from other romance novelists.
How does this impact my own writing?
It’s not just about throbbing members. Romance has been impacted by a lot of formulas and standard language, and it’s one of the reasons I was so adamant about self-publishing my own work. I kept being told by editors that I was a great writer with excellent style and character development and a wonderful story, but they couldn’t sell what I was writing.
So I did it myself, because I believed in writing a story that didn’t rely on the formula.
I’m not saying the phrase throbbing member will not come up in your love scene. I’m saying don’t rely on it. Be conscious of the word choices you make, and deliver a love scene that is right for your story.
So fellow writers out there, please no throbbing members. Push your vocabulary. Push your plot. Don’t be a lazy writer, and don’t write something everyone expects. Write the story that you must write.
If you missed it, last week we talked about why I hate writing love scenes.
Next week, we’ll talk about why romance novels are not porn for women.