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Slippery Tip #6: Use Dialogue Effectively

Dialogue is when the people in your story talk. It’s one of the most dynamic and engaging ways to tell your story, but it’s often underused in porn. Dialogue can be very effective for revealing character, for filling in background, for moving the plotforward, and for rescuing your story from being a series of big blocks of dense text on the page. It’s a very handy storytelling tool. The difficult part is making it sound natural.

Accomplishing this is more of an art than a science. Paradoxically, the quickest way to make your characters sound NOT normal is to try to mimic the way people actually talk. Real people are all over the place and if you wrote down what they said word for word they would sound like blithering idiots. Story dialogue is a stylized version of speech that rarely exists in the real world, but feels like it does.

One of the most common problems I see is failing to use contractions. We almost always use I’ll, you’re, and they’d rather than I will, you are, and they would. There are certain idiomatic phrases where it sounds awkward to use contractions, but otherwise it comes across as formal and stilted. This is why robots and alien often don’t use contractions – it makes them sound weirdly different when they talk.

It’s sometimes good to give certain characters verbal “tags,” but be careful not to overdo them. Don’t have Judy start every line with “So” or “Well.” Use these sparingly and readers will pick up on it. Same goes for accents. Don’t try to faithfully represent a character’s accent phonetically (“I pahked my cah in Havahd Yahd”). This is difficult to read and gets annoying. Again, just a few little hints of an accent here and there will do the trick nicely.

Keep in mind that dialogue is usually a rapid back and forth exchange. People rarely make long speeches when they’re having a conversation with someone. Even if they do, it’s usually a good idea for the other character to inject a comment just to break things up. Each line should move things forward. If you can remove the line and it doesn’t “break” the forward momentum of the scene, then you probably don’t need it. This is often the case with “chit chat.” Yes, it may be realistic, but for the purposes of a story it must be distilled down to its minimal essence.

Another important aspect of dialogue to consider is the idea of subtext. People are often indirect about what they say: there are the words, and then there’s what’s behind the words. “Sorry I’m late, honey,” Jack said. Jill forced a smile. “Not to worry, dear. As a matter of fact, the other wives have become quite jealous of all the free time your late nights at work give me.” Here we see that instead of being angry and lashing out, Jill is saying the opposite of what she feels in a sweet, passive aggressive way, and she is planting seeds of doubt in her husband’s mind. What’s she doing with all that “free” time? Meeting strangers online for role play fantasies? Sucking the neighbor’s cock? Interracial, latex fetish, bukakke gang bangs? The best dialogue forces the reader to pay attention in order to interpret what’s really being said.

Beyond the challenge of creating compelling dialogue, there is also the grammatical mechanics of how to present it on the page. There are just a few simple rules, but it’s probably the area that most new writers have the most difficulty with. I’ll cover some of the biggest technical aspects of dialogue in my next installment.

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In Tense Writing

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Slippery Tip #5: Keep your tense consistent

This seemingly simple little rule trips up a lot of writers (including me sometimes). Your story will most likely either be told in past tense or present tense – “She fingered her pussy” vs. “She fingers her pussy.” A problem I often see is that the writer unintentionally shifts between the two tenses. There are certain cases where different tenses can be employed, but almost all of the time you need to stick to one or the other. Where I see the shift happen most often is when the story goes from general narration to the action of a sex scene. This is a natural tendency, so watch for it when proofreading your own work.

Past tense is the most common and most “invisible” tense. To keep things easy for yourself in the beginning, this should be your default tense to write in. You’ll most likely find that you don’t really have to think much about it since this is how most of us naturally tell stories to our family and friends. “So, I went to the store and bought a dozen condoms, and the girl behind the counter flashed me her boobs” more often than, “So, I go to the story and buy a dozen condoms, and the girl behind the counter flashes me her boobs.”

Where using present tense is useful is when we want to give more immediacy to a story (especially when it’s being told from a first person point of view). “I open the door and see my naked mom shove a zucchini up her snatch” instead of “He opened the door and saw his mom shove a zucchini up her snatch.” Both work fine, but using present tense has the benefit of being able to put the reader more in the moment. They’re experiencing events along with the characters, whereas with past tense the narrator is recounting events that already occurred.

The key is to consciously pick a tense before you start writing, and stick to it. When I decide to write a story in present tense I often find myself slipping into past. Once I’m done writing a story in the present tense, of often find myself slipping into it when I’m writing my next story in past. It’s a common problem, but one that’s easily fixed if you remind yourself to be aware of it when you’re proofreading your story.

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Outta Line

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Slippery Tip #4: Create an outline

To do an outline or not is a point of contention among amateur writers. To me, this is a silly argument because everyone who writes a story does an outline – even if they don’t realize it. My view is that if you don’t think about your story and create some kind of “formal” outline and just start writing your story, this simply makes your first rough draft your outline – a very, very detailed outline.

Creating an outline for a porn story is super easy (at least it is if you do it like I do). It starts when you have that moment of insight – an idea for a dirty story that you just have to write. Don’t run straight to the computer – let the story live in your head for a little while. Play some of the scenes out in your mind like you’re watching a movie. Edit the scenes until they flow. Get to know your characters by watching them interact in your imagination. Jot down any traits, plot twists, or lines of dialogue that get you excited.

When you reach the point where you have to get the story out of your head and down on “paper,” gather any notes you’ve made and do your outline. At the very least, all you need to do is write one simple sentence for each scene in your story. This will allow you to create a basic structure for your story that will keep you on track and insure that you know where you going before you begin your journey. Having an idea for how your story is going to end is as important (if not more so) than knowing where it starts.

My idea is to write a story about a single mother who confesses to her son that she’s a sex addict. Here’s my quickie outline:

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Sex Addicted Mom (working title)

  • Mom talks to Son, tells him she’s a sex addict and her therapist told her to open up about it.
  • Son thinks about what Mom told him, gets horny and jerks off to fantasy of her.
  • Son offers support; Mom asks him to get rid of all her sex toys for her.
  • Son secretly keeps toys; plays with them while he jerks off to more graphic mom fantasies.
  • Mom tells Son she hasn’t had an orgasm in two days and she’s going crazy; Son gets turned on.
  • Son plays with toys more; accepts that he’s sexually attracted to Mom and plans to seduce her.
  • Son offers foot massage; Mom talks about her sex problems; Son makes move and they do oral.
  • Mom and Son go to bedroom and fuck every which way.
  • Twist – Son finds out Mom never went to a therapist; she was seducing him the whole time.

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There, that doesn’t look too hard, now does it? These are just the bare bones, and provide enough of a framework to get you going. You can jump into the writing process with a good idea of where the story is going and how you’re going to get there. Like I said, this is the minimum. If you wanted to add a little more detail about some of the “beats” in the scene, along with some more information about character emotions, motivations, or actions, you can do a little more. This is what my expanded outline for this story might look like:

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Mom’s Addiction

SET UP

  • Scene 1: Distressed Mom sits Son down for awkward conversation – her therapist suggested she be open with those closest to her and tell them that she’s suffering from a serious problem: sex addiction. She admits that she’s a chronic masturbator and watches porn almost every night. Son is shocked, embarrassed, and a bit angry, though he really doesn’t know why.
  • Scene 2: Later that night, Son fumes in his bedroom over his mother’s admission. Begins thinking about his mother’s sexuality, admits to himself that he’s been suppressing his own shameful physical attraction to her since puberty. He ends up fantasizing about her masturbating to porn and jerks himself off.

DEVELOPMENT

  • Scene 3: Next day, Son apologizes to Mom for not being supportive. He asks if there is anything he can do to help. She talks more about her sex addiction, then reluctantly asks him to throw away some things for her since she can’t do it herself. He agrees and she turns over a big collection of sex toys.
  • Scene 4: That night, Son goes through the box of toys touching, tasting, and trying them out as he beats off to thoughts of these objects being in his mother’s pussy. Feels guilty and disgusted with himself.
  • Scene 5: Mom is upset, Son encourages her to talk. She hasn’t had an orgasm in two days and it’s driving her crazy, she’s dying for sex and willing to do anything or anyone. He tries to give her advice, but the bulge in his pants makes it difficult.
  • Scene 6: Son gives in to his urges and plays with mom’s toys again. Accepts that he is sexually attracted to his mother, and decides to take advantage of her sex addiction to seduce her.

CLIMAX

  • Scene 6: Mom is really stressed, Son offers foot massage to relax her. Mom talks about how hard it is not to masturbate and how she misses her toys. Conversation and massage become more intimate until Son makes his move and they give each other oral.
  • Scene 7: In Mom’s bedroom, they strip down and go at it in every position for the rest of the day and most of the night. Mom tells Son that she’d be able to give up masturbation and porn if he fucked her like that a few times a week. Son happily agrees.
  • Scene 8: Twist – Son somehow discovers that his mom never went to a therapist, she made the whole thing up. It turns out he wasn’t the one who seduced her, but the other way around!

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Again, not all that much work, but I have a very good idea of what’s going to happen in each scene, what the purpose of the scene is (both on its own and as part of the big picture), and a sense of how these characters transition from mother and son to lovers. If something doesn’t work, I’ll most likely be able to spot it at this stage where it will be much easier to fix than after I’ve written 3,000 words and realize there’s a problem and have to start over.

A big complaint by anti-outliners is that if they plan things out they lose the creative spontaneity of discovering the story as they write it. This is crapola! There’s a great deal of creativity that goes into making a good outline, which is just as exciting as writing. Also, there’s no rule that says you have to adhere strictly to the outline. If you’re in the middle of a scene and a great idea pops into your head, you’re free to pursue it. Filling in the details of an outlined scene is where real the action is, and there’s nothing in an outline that impinges on the thrill of creating a story.

There’s a lot more to say on this topic, but this is enough for our purposes. Think about your story, make an outline, write your story. These steps are critical to completing the creative phase of conjuring your erotic tale while minimizing frustration and maximizing fun.

If you still don’t want to make an outline, try doing one while naked and imagining me leaning over your shoulder helping you along as I rub my stiff nipples against your bare shoulder. If that doesn’t work, then you’re a lost cause!

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Promises, Promises

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Rachael’s Slippery Tip #3: Building to a Great Climax

A good story is like a good one-night stand.

First there’s the attraction, then some foreplay, and it all leads to a fantastic climax (or two, or five). If any of these parts are missing, then it’s just doesn’t work quite as well. It’s the same with a story, whether it’s a 3-page quickie or a multi-chapter epic. You don’t need to be a literary expert in story structure, but you do need to understand the minimum requirements if you want to seduce your reader into coming back to your place for the night.

A lot of writing guides explain that stories should have a beginning, middle, and end. I’ve always found this to be a pretty useless way to explain how to shape a story. What’s important is the function of each of these parts. The beginning contains an introduction to your characters, a premise, and a promise. The middle serves to develop the characters, complicate the premise, and build tension. The end is where you deliver the big pay-off, release the tension, and fulfill the promise.

The beginning is the place for setting up everything the reader needs to know. It all starts with an interesting character that compels the reader to want to get to know them better. A mother of two in a sexless marriage who notices her older son developing into a desirable young man. A shy daughter who doesn’t know to deal with her blossoming body and wants to explore her sexuality with someone she has trusted all her life. A horny nephew who lusts after his aunt, but is crippled with guilt because his aunt and his mom are identical twin sisters. Describing characters in this way easily leads to your basic premise. Mom seduces teen son; daughter teases daddy; nephew has sex with aunt as a surrogate for his own mother. Your premise is the spine of your story. This means that every scene, event, and line of dialogue should somehow serve this main idea. Staying true to your premise will keep you on track while writing and prevent you from veering off into areas that confuse or distract the reader. Finally, the premise contains an inherent promise. Mom seduces son makes a promise that mother and son are going to fuck. Daughter teases daddy promises that at some point daddy will break down and give his little girl more than she bargained for in the form of his very hard cock. Nephew has sex with mom’s twin sister promises the readers that he will realize that his desire for his aunt is a misplaced lust for his mother and that they will consummate this taboo relationship (possibly with his aunt joining in). The set up can be as short as a paragraph or as long as a few pages provided each of these elements is included.

The middle is generally the meatiest part of a story. This may not always be true in an erotic story (more specifically, a jerk off story). This really is a case where length doesn’t matter as much as how you use it. This is a good place for you to tell us more about the character in terms of background, attitudes, problems, goals, or whatever is important to this story as far as motivation goes. If our premise is mom seduces teen son, there should be more to it than just her needing a good fuck. What is there in her past or in her mind that allows her to cross the line that holds most other mother’s back. Does she have pleasant memories of consensual incest from when she was a teen? Does a friend of hers confess to fucking her own son and plant the idea in her head? Did her son do something to change her view of him from an innocent boy to a sexually appealing man? This is also where you need to build tension. Notice that I used the word “need”! If mom wants to fuck, and son wants to fuck, and they fuck that’s all well and good, but you’re skipping the literary foreplay. Mom should make a move, then pull back. Or maybe she tries something, and her son rejects her (for now). Perhaps the sparks fly, but before they can get very far they are interrupted. Without building some tension here in the middle, the climax is almost always less satisfying.

Then comes the big finish. This is where the promise of the premise gets paid off. Mom fucks son. Dad chokes daughter with his cum. Nephew slides his cock into mom while aunty licks his ass. This is where all porn stories end up – generally no real surprises for the reader. They know what’s going to happen at the end as soon as they pick up on your promise, but they want to see how the characters get there. If you’ve done a good job of building some tension, by the time they get to the expected end they’re so excited that even though they knew what was coming they’re uncontrollably worked up and masturbating like crazy as the final sex scene plays out in all its graphic glory! Once you deliver on the promise and have drained everyone’s sex fluids, that’s your signal to end the story, and end it quick. Your reader is a mush of post-orgasmic jelly at this point, so put a clever bow on your mini-masterpiece in the form of a few poignant lines and walk away.

So there you go – all you ever need to know about story structure. That wasn’t so difficult, was it? Set up, development, pay off. If you can think in these terms, your stories will be better than half the stuff out there by default – I promise.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, your place or mine…?

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Size Matters

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Rachael’s Slippery Tip #2: Start small.

Writing porn is a shitload of fun! But, if you want to do it well, it can also be a lot of work. One problem I’ve seen many first time writers run into is that they’ve envisioned a sweeping erotic epic with a large cast of horny characters coupling and tripling up in an endless array of combinations, but when it comes to translating their opus into a real story they peter out a few pages into it. For your first couple of stories it’s important not to bite off more than you can chew (or, more appropriately for our purposes, don’t jerk off more than you can swallow).

When you’re starting out, think in terms of setting up a simple situation that leads to one good sex scene. Son walks in on mom masturbating with a dildo and offers to let her use his cock. Dad sneaks into daughter’s bedroom at night to jerk off on her face, but she wakes up and sucks daddy off. Sister doesn’t want to be the only virgin at school and gets her little brother to pop her cherry.

Nothing fancy, nothing too complicated, just a straight forward cause and effect situation. Keep the main action strictly between two characters. There could be a third character lurking around to add some tension, but the sex scene needs to revolve around just two people (or any combination of two humans, aliens, elves, dogs, and/or vampires). Along the same lines, don’t try to have your amorous couple perform the entire Karma Sutra. Limit yourself to one or two sex acts and focus on really bringing those to life. Mom gives son a handjob. Daughter lets dad eat her out. Brother spies on sister sucking off Bandit after winning the dressage competition. Don’t try to do too much all at once.

Shoot for 3 to 5 pages, but no more than about 7. Pages can vary depending on how much dialogue there is, so it might be helpful to think in terms of word count. Around 3,000 words is a reasonable target for your first few stories. Once you get the feel for the amount of time and effort it takes to write a simple story, you’ll be better equipped to know when to begin expanding your titillating tales to include multiple sex scenes, more characters, and deeper plots.

Start small, score a few quick successes by actually finishing some stories, then build from there.

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