Wednesday, August 22

Overdoing what??

Yesterday was one of those days that left me enough time to do some blog hopping, but little else. When I reached the RTB column I found myself nodding and agreeing with Daniela's take on the overdoing of "It" in romance, that was until I reached the last line of the column:

Please Note: The post concerns romance novels only, not Erotica.

And I was left thinking "huh" and not enough time to actually formulate a comment. This darned training schedule is for the birds, I can't wait for training to be over so I can work my set hours. Sorry, about the tangent.

So, why the "huh"? I was nodding along because it's exactly how I feel about erotic romance, but not romance. Of course, I don't seem to be reading a whole lot of anything right now, but the romance novels I have read don't seem to include an over abundance of sex to story, or sex as filler. Maybe I'm not reading the right books :) I can't say the same thing about erotic romance. I do see this in erotic romance but also see it as the nature of the beast, because in many instances sex is not only integral to the plot, it is the plot. I've got lots of issues with that, but it's a different topic.

On RTB we're asked not to single out books or authors, not so on my blog. I'm left wondering if what some may consider overdoing "It" may seem just right to others. So, I'm curious...

What books are overdoing "It"?

Are there particular authors (besides Cheryl Holt :) that uses sex as a filler?

Is the popularity of erotic romance bleeding down into general romance and changing story lines and plots? And if so how?

Now, I've got to hit the shower, pick Junior up from a sleepover and get to work :)

Have a great day. And, happy reading to anyone actually doing it.


Jenster said...

Interesting. As a self-proclaimed prude, I can't think of a single romance that has overdone it. Hm. Maybe I'm not quite as prudish as I thought. lol

Karen Scott said...

Shannon Mckenna maybe, but I'm not sure her books are traditional romances, they seem more like erotic romance to me.

Tara Marie said...

Jen, honestly I think we're on the same "prude" level--LOL.

Karen, I've not read Shannon McKenna, but maybe I should give her a try :)

Kat O+ said...

The thing is, what's overdone for some might be just the thing for others. I read Lisa Valdez's Passion and thought the sex scenes were way over the top, but I know that most bloggers (well, the ones whose blogs I visit) loved them and thought they were essential to the plot. So it really is a matter of mileage, and I think it's confusing to talk about sex scenes being overdone as opposed to being badly written. The latter, I think, is what people really want to complain about.

I've just been going through Laura Kinsale's backlist and rereading some other old favourites, and I think people are forgetting just how steamy romances could get way back when. It's just that now, authors use fewer euphemisms and, yes, perhaps go into more detail about the sexual act. But then again, when has clothing ever advanced a plot?* Yet no one bats an eye when we read that the heroine is wearing jeans, a tight tank top and earrings.

* Excludes romantic suspense for obvious reasons.

CindyS said...

I should probably read the column before commenting but do you think she meant straight erotica instead of romantica? Cause I think most of the authors that I read do just fine.

I think it depends on if you are trying more 'new to you' authors. There does seem to be a shift from telling a romantic story to telling a story about sex. Shanna McKenna is a good example and I think if you tried her you'll either love her or hate her - I'm in the hate her category.

I'm waiting for the Lisa Marie Rice book because I know her roots were in erotica/romantica?

Okay, I need to think on this more because I haven't really answered your questions!


Laura Florand said...

I think of this as personal taste. I just got tired of reading so many of these scenes and bored with them, and now usually prefer books where the focus is on the dialogue. But I used to love them! And many people still do--it just depends what you want to read at that point in your reading life.

Kate Diamond said...

Actually, I find it all confusing. What's a sexy romance, and what's erotica? Sometimes, the line isn't too clear for me.

But in the June 2007 issue of Romance Writers Report, Toni Blake wrote an article called "Erotice Romance VS. Erotica: What are the Differences and Why is it Important?"

Basically, her argument is that
(1) porn exists to sexually arouse.

(2) Erotica tells the "sexual journey of the characters and how this impacts them as individuals."

(3) Erotic Romance is about "the development of a romantic relationship through sexual interaction."

(4) Sexy Romance is a story "written about the development of a romantic reliatonship that just happens to have more explicit sex.

Apparently, there's also a term called "romantica" out there, which seems to operate under the basic premise of "romance first, erotica second--but my oh my, that sex better be hot."

If you all get the RWR, it's a great article. You should check it out!

Kyahgirl said...

Hi Tara marie, I was just kind of skulking past your blog as I sometimes do (via CindyS) and this caught my eye. Just today I decided to never try another Christine Feehan book because I'm just tired, not only of her plot lines but also the pages and pages of filler sex. Stephanie Laurens is another one. Some of her older books have a better balance. I do enjoy relevant sex scenes in any level of detail but I enjoy more an author who can still create romance and sexual tension without them. I'm thinking of someone like Carla Kelly. Now that is one humongously talented writer!