Connecting with the reader and getting in the mood.
Your erotic scenes should be strong if you’ve followed the advice in ‘Passionate Plots; a Guide to Writing Erotic Stories and Scenes’, and having well-drawn, empathic characters, a tight plot full of rising tension and sensual yet direct sex talk will all engage your reader in the story. There’s one last point I’d like to consider, although it’s hard to define and impossible to teach, and that’s your connection to the reader.
Often, when we read a scene that evokes a particular emotion in us, although that may be because of our own subjective experience, it’s also in large part down to the emotions the author poured into the page. If you feel tearful when you’re writing a sad scene for example, then there’s a strong chance your reader will too. No matter how sharp and skilful your writing, on the other hand, if you are bored by your story this will communicate itself through to your audience. Yes it’s important to have good characterisation and plot and use the right language and description but you should be able to feel your story too. The best writers are often those who are passionate about their work, and if you can’t get passionate about an erotic scene, when can you?
In short, it’s okay to be slightly aroused yourself when writing your erotic scenes, or later when you read them back through. In fact, it’s a very good sign. That’s the effect you’re trying to create, after all.
So when you sit down to write your erotic scenes, it’s a good idea to ‘get yourself in the mood’. Relax, and spoil your senses. I’ve heard of lots of writers who have little rituals or certain songs they like to listen to or aromatherapy oils they burn to evoke certain moods etc. and I’m no different. If I’m in the middle of writing an erotic romance I’ll be reading lots of it, watching romantic and sexy films and listening to lots of sultry R’n’ B. When I sit down to write I’ll have a playlist of sexy songs on repeat in the background, and perhaps even a scented candle burning. It works for me. Only you can find what works for you.