bananapancakes7 author of The Woods are Lovely, Dark, and Deep
1. Where did you learn to write about smut?
Well, I didn’t. Ha! It was something I was always nervous about writing thoroughly; if I did include an intimate scene in whatever I chose to scribble down (I wrote a lot of short, ridiculous, bad stories in my past) I usually just cheated and skimmed the details, or did the “fade to black.” Yup. I pulled that card. So, I never really learned … but I have read a lot of books and written from my own experiences, so I’m kind of self taught… I think. I’m still learning, too, actually.
2. What was the first smut story you ever wrote? How did that go? Did you fall into clichés? Is it still posted?
Oh, my. It was a one-shot for the first Twilight 25 Challenge, for the prompt “Sky.” It involved Alice and Jasper in an airplane restroom. Lol. It went… okay, I guess? I was really nervous since it was the first time I’d ever tried to write something that involved the panties coming off! I probably fell into a couple clichés… it depends on what you would consider a stereotype. I didn’t say “I wrapped my hands around his gargantuan, throbbing member” or anything like that, but I’m sure there are certain words in there that are used often! And yeah, it’s still posted. I don’t know whether to laugh or be embarrassed!
3. Was it smut that brought you into this fandom?
Yes and no, actually. My first Twi-fic was Wide Awake, which I found by accident on Google. I’d actually read fanfic for ER and Supernatural before, so it wasn’t the first time I’d read smutty stories – but Wide Awake caught my attention, definitely. However, after I was hooked, I always used to look for canon stories that involved Carlisle’s early years, just because he’s one of my favorite characters. Honestly, I read a lot of stories that don’t contain much smut, but it’s always a nice surprise when it’s in there!
4. What is your favorite smut scene to write?
Even though they don’t actually “do it,” I had fun writing a scene for my story, “Thirty Days,” where Bella and Edward start getting a little hot and heavy in the car. I’m not sure what it is about cars – maybe it’s the fantasy of getting frisky in the backseat, or I’m just getting flashbacks of seeing Titanic so many times when I was 13 – but mmhm. I think it’s fun to write “the sexy” when it’s in places that are other than in bed, like in the car, of course, or on the floor, or against the wall. It could be a little adventurous, maybe? But you know, the moments leading up to the big bang – the clothes coming off, the hair-grabbing, the touching in naughty places… it’s fun! I think those are my favorite. ♥
5. What sort of struggles do you have when writing smut?
Trying to make sure it’s not rushed, but not too long and unnecessary, which sometimes I have a problem with, whether it’s smutty or not! Mainly, I want it to sound genuine, and not like something out of one of those cheap romance novels you can buy at airports with a Fabio-look-alike on the cover. And sometimes it’s hard to not go into too much physical detail; I’d like for my readers to see the picture of the characters in their minds, kind of like a movie, if I could, so I have to watch for overly describing where peoples’ hands are at all times. I’m sure no one wants to read “his hands went through my hair, over my shoulders, down my back, up and over my navel, and then circled to this part and that part, and he played ‘head, shoulders, knees, and toes” etc. Sometimes I’ll reread what I have and think, “NO ONE CARES! WHAT ARE THEY FEELING?!” lol. A little bit can go a long way, so I try to remember that.
6. Have you ever written Dirty Talk? What is easy about it? Hard? How do you struggle?
Haha. Um… no. I think I would struggle with anything other than “Say my name when you do that to me…” or something close. I’ve never tried… and it’s not that I think I’m above it, or that it’s not fitting for romantic/frisky stories, it’s just that I think if it happened to me in RL, I’d laugh my ass off! For me, I suppose there’s a fine line between being naughty and being dirty. Dirty makes me giggle. If anyone’s ever seen Scary Movie 2, when Brenda’s riding her football boyfriend, and he asks her to dirty talk? (http://www(dot)youtube(dot)com/watch?v=PemI83hbqxg&has_verified=1) – well, that’s why I laugh. Maybe I’m immature.
7. Any tips for writing Dirty Talk?
Well, since I’ve never written dirty talk, I suppose I shouldn’t preach, but I’ve definitely written my share of Bella having naughty inner thoughts. I suppose you should think of your character, and match up their personality to their words. If they’re shy and timid, maybe they would start out slow and be suggestive with a line of what they think is sexy, or what they’d like to try in bed. If they’ve got a flirty, sassy side, maybe something like, “I pulled the pen out of his hands, brushing aside all distractions of work and paper. ‘I can think of much better ways for you to use your fingers,’ I said slyly, sliding onto his lap and unbuttoning my jeans. “Starting with me, and the letter ‘V.” (You can laugh. I’m lame.) Or you could go for full-on cheesiness and say, “Recyling? Sure, after you take that out, come recycle me … use me over and over, baby.” Now, personally, I’d pee my pants laughing if this was said to me for real, but if you’re writing that the characters are having fun, your readers will, too! Just take it slow and have fun with what you come up with.
8. Any tips for writing smut in general?
Write what you know, or what you might like to feel in intimate situations. It might be a little embarrassing to make it personal, but if you can get into the shoes (or pants) of your character, there’s a good chance you can make a scene a little hotter because your words are coming from feelings, not just what you think should be written down. Not everyone always climaxes at the same time, and not everyone has be a screamer. Also, ask yourself – are the characters in love, yet? Is it more personal and deep than a pair who are just looking for fun, who might have a wild romp under the sheets? The atmosphere/setting can be a great addition for creating a romantic, fantasy setting for lovebirds, or outside the back of a bar, with chipped, wooden walls and drizzles of rain for the ones who just want to get freaky. (Or, they could do it in a car. Just because. For me. lol.)
9. The story you are most know for having written (The Woods are Lovely, Dark, and Deep) doesn’t contain much smut in it. However, your other stories are plenty smutty. Did you experience any difficulties going from one The Woods to those concerning smut?
No difficulties, actually – it was quite the opposite! While I try to keep “The Woods” as lighthearted as I can amongst all the angst and drama, which I love writing, sometimes it’s nice to move over to a completely different plot where everything is all sex-crazed and funny, and ridiculous. I collab’d with queenofgrey for the AwkWard contest, and I can’t tell you how hard I laughed at myself while writing “Strapped.” It was the most cringe-worthy thing I could think of, but it was tons of fun. And as for “Thirty Days,” I’m about to write Bella & Edward getting their O-faces on, so it’s cool to be able to go from the ‘thought-provoking, intense’ fic to the ones where they’re more about sexual tension. Although, “The Woods” has its share of UST, which is about to get resolved, too. So… for a little while, the woods might turn smutty, hot, & cheap. But I enjoy writing about different plots, emotions, and whether the under-panty-things are naughty or nice. ♥