When Butterflies Are Fluttering: How to Write Sensual Scenes

by | Aug 31, 2023 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

Photo by Vera Arsic

From Melissa Rea, Rabbithole Nights of Alice Book One is full of spicy and sensual scenes that titillate readers, something that novelists often have difficulty writing.

There has never been anything more beautiful to CEO Alice Hightower than the sunsets. That’s because it’s only the time after that that she can be truly herself. By day, she is running a medical device company that’s ready to unveil a revolutionary cardiac bypass procedure–but by night, after the sun’s done painting the sky purple and orange, Alice steps into her room and opens her closet door. Inside, clothes she’s never seen before are waiting for her, waiting to be tried on; there might be a pair of bell bottoms popular during the disco and funk era, or there might even be a beautiful black flapper dress from Sinatra’s time. 

Regardless of where they’re from and what they are, all Alice knows is that when she wears them, she’s off and ready for the erotic adventure the night is willing to give her.

What’s more? These erotic adventures aren’t just confined to the city she’s in. For some reason, perhaps magic, perhaps a dream, the clothes she wears take her across time and space, placing her in situations where deliciously handsome men can’t wait to fulfill all her fantasies.

That’s the steamy premise of Melissa Rea’s Rabbithole Nights of Alice Book One. With that in mind, readers can be assured that there will be a lot of hot, steamy, sensual scenes. 

When Butterflies Are Fluttering

Some people might say that sensual scenes are irrelevant. Some would even go further and say that their presence only serves to diminish the work and stop it from getting elevated to the ever-growing canon of classics. This is simply not true and is merely the projection of a mind that has a very negative outlook on sex and sensuality.

Sensual scenes are important. Sex, while often seen as vulgar and disgusting, is nonetheless a very significant part of human life. It is how new life gets to be made, and it’s how people can become more intimate with each other. That is why if you are an author and you want to include a sensual scene in your novels, it’s imperative that you do so with the utmost care and consideration. Because if you don’t, you’re in for a world of mockery.

How to Write Sensual Scenes

While not every romance book–any book, rather–needs a sensual scene (one can always opt in for a “fade to black” situation), if you want to add some, you really need to do it right. 

Writing a sensual scene can be a challenging task for any writer. Describing physical intimacy and establishing a very emotionally charged scene can be difficult. This is with the added burden of attempting to create an impactful emotional connection between the reader, the characters, and the moment. A well-written, sensual scene makes your readers feel like they are a part of the story and leaves a lasting impression that colors their reading of the book (and sequels) going forward. 

Here are some important tips for doing so:

Focus on emotions

A sensual scene isn’t just about physical sensations; it’s also about the emotions. Focus on the characters’ emotional states and how they react to each other. Describe the tension between the characters, perhaps the nervousness of a first kiss or the joy of reuniting after a long separation.

Use sensory language

To make the scene more sensual, use language that evokes the characters’ physical sensations. Describe the skin’s texture, lips’ taste, hair’s scent, and breathing’s sound. Sensory language can help your readers feel like they are experiencing the scene firsthand.

Avoid clichés

When writing a sensual scene, avoiding clichés and overused phrases is best. Be creative and descriptive in your language. For example, instead of describing a kiss as “electric,” describe it as “a lightning bolt that jolted through her body.” This kind of language makes the scene unique and memorable.

Consider pacing

Pacing is crucial. You want to create a sense of intimacy and build tension, but you want to take your time with the set. Consider the scene’s pacing and how it fits the rest of the story. Consider thinking about the characters’ personalities and how they would react in this situation.

Be respectful

Finally, it’s essential to be respectful when writing a sensual scene. Avoid writing anything considered offensive or disrespectful to your readers. Refrain from writing anything that isn’t in line with the characters’ personalities or the tone of the story.


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