Saturday, February 3, 2007

Jane juggles.

How did I know I was a filthmonger? Well, I've always been interested in that sort of thing, and when I started writing romance, I found my characters were too. So, there I was with my new critique group, and they were letting me have it on my first attempt at writing a ... romance?... something. In chapter two, my heroine, an apprentice actress with an eighteenth-century theater company, had been propositioned by a young man at a party. Their assignment is in the orangerie, and the first thing she notices is that he's squeezed the huge spot on his chin as preparation. How sweet, I thought (they were both quite young).
They then proceed to have clumsy, fast, first-time sex, buttons flying, with the occasional cry of "Ouch!"
Question from critique partner: Is he the hero?
Me: I don't know yet. I think she might just be learning how to, uh, do it.
Critique partner (very firmly): If you're writing a romance, the hero gets the cherry.
Me: Why?
My heroine then picks oranges and juggles with them.
And that's pretty much the pattern of my writing: there are no rules and I and my characters can fool around in whatever way we choose.
My first book, like Celia's, was a traditional Regency, with no juggling but rather a lot of sex, and some quite grown up sex, too (mature protagonists who'd learned how to do it).
I have a book coming out in October, from Signet Eclipse, called Forbidden Shores. No juggling, but lots of the other. Lots. It's about a woman in 1800 who is in a triangle with two men, where each of them is in love with the wrong person--the one who can't possibly return their love. There are lots of references to The Tempest (it's set on a Caribbean island) and The Merchant of Venice.
First the sex, then the juggling.
I'm so glad to be here with everyone. Milk and sugar?


Colette Gale said...

I prefer spice with my tea, thanks, Jane.

Can't wait for Forbidden Shores...I've read most of it (where's the rest??) and also your other filth, and must say, it's rather...titillating.

Pam Rosenthal said...

Juggling in the orangerie... what a sweet little idea. And I hope that at this party we'll be dis(cussing)ing some of those all-too-long taken-for-gospel notions that make the act fall flat... like that you have to know immediately who the hero is. SEZ WHO, asks Pam -- which would (sez who, I mean) have made a fine title for this blog as well.

Celia May Hart said...

Oh!!! I have an unpubbed where the hero and heroine have sex and she doesn't have an orgasm! It's *supposed* to be that way, that it isn't all foghorns and fireworks all the time, let alone the first time.

But I guess the hero committed the cardinal sin of not pleasing her first, but you know, he'd been celibate for a while.....

BTW, when you said she started juggling in the orangerie, I had the amusing thought that she juggled cherries!!

Meljprincess said...

"Forbidden Shores" sounds great, Jane! I like reading stories where both hero and heroine know how to "do it". Drives me crazy when the heroine doesn't have a clue and the man has been sexually active with a handful of women.
I'll bet there's some juggling of breasts in your book. *g*
Hmmm...sometimes a love triangle can turn into a juicy threesome. That's all I'll say...
*g* Cream...and sugar if you please.

Amy S. said...

Forbidden Shores sounds great!

Theresa N. said...

Forbidden Shores sounds great.
I'm still laughing about the cherries!! Why? is a very good question as far as I'm concerned.

Please add a little shot of something to my tea, please. Just this once, of course.

Robin L. Rotham said...

Forbidden Shores is so damn good, I'm going to buy two copies -- one for display on the shelf (which shall remain pristine, or as pristine as smut can get) and one to keep under the edge of the bed. In case I need it for reference or something.

Santa said...

Excellent, I'll be keeping my eye out for Forbidden Shores. As you know, I loved Dedication and so I am positive this will also be a winner for me!

Jane Lockwood said...

Both Robin and Colette were my crit partners/cold readers for Forbidden Shores--thanks again, my little ticklers.
And Santa, I see you've outed me, not that I'm keeping it much of a secret...glad you liked the filthy Regency!
Pam, we should definitely discuss the unwritten rules of romance and erotic romance (note to self: save this to blog about). One of those myths, in reference to Celia's comment is that sex must always be of the oh my god I have never experienced anything like this heaven earth and all the planets including those yet to be discovered moved not even with my three husbands and I am ruined for all others caliber. After all, sometimes a cigar is only a cigar.
Oh my God, I'm listening to the Met, and Mimi just died. Wow. Any other opera freaks here? And, no, Phantom does not count.
Cav-Pag next week!

Kate Pearce said...

Oh Mimi, thy tiny hand is frozen,that Mimi?
Saw it at Covent Garden-that line always sticks in my head because Mimi is supposed to be dying from consumption and, as this is opera, she is usually being portrayed by some large robust goddess of an opera singer which kind of makes me laugh. (god did I just give away the plot?)

Anyway, I've had a chance to look at some of Janet's excellent writing and she's fab and different and revels in it.

Because I came over from the UK too, I wonder if the romances I write are considered unconventional because I never learned the 'rules' of the U.S. market until it was too late to change my style?

Is it my turn tomorrow?
Do I have to go away and think of something witty to say? (help)

Jane Lockwood said...

Yep, that Mimi!
The amazing thing about opera is that it doesn't matter if the singer is as big as a house and twenty years too old--if s/he's good, the illusion is sustained.
And yes, you're on tomorrow, and of course you'll be witty! We expect nothing less.

robynl said...

Sure the hero should get the cherry, LOL. Celia, I agree that it isn't all foghorns and fireworks all the time and especially the first time.

CathieCaffey said...

I had to go search for what Filthmonger meant (grin).

Jane, nice meeting you! I must find out about your books! Too those coming out! FORBIDDEN SHORES sounds delicious!

Has anyone ever looked up why its called "popping the cherry" Sometimes its interesting how these words come to be. Probably now that I asked, its some homework I ought to do!

Of course its not all orgasm (and 3 or 4 or them each time)but yep, it becomes where from what I read, they supposed to have one each and every time.

Little Lamb Lost said...

Nice to meet you Jane. No milk or sugar, thanks.

Have been hearing much about the rules of romance and can't help but feeling they don't fit somehow. I think that many readers are leaning away from what was once deemed mandatory. The pushing of the envelope in this regards probably reflects current tastes better...even if your story is a "filthy regency". Sounds like good fun to me!

Celia May Hart said...

La Boheme is the only opera that will make me bawl my eyes out before the second act. (The first time I saw it, it was the third act that got me going.)

I've noticed that Baz Luhrmann's production of it (which came to NY) is out on DVD. Much recommended, especially if David Hobson has the lead in it.

Why yes, so long as we're talking Phantom and the opera, I will refer frequently to Australian singers that practically nobody else has heard of.

Jane George said...

Spiced Tea Party? You must be serving Constant Comment.

But I have a question(s) instead. Has the success of erotica in e-publication driven up the demand for hotness in what editors now want in general? Is there a chance the unwritten "rules" around heroes and heroines could also free up now? I'm wondering if some the constarints that drive genre fiction aren't also limiting it. I would love to have more literary elements in my rommance reads, and having to play "Guess the Her" would be, ahem, novel fun!

jane George said...

That's "Guess the Her-O!"

Jane Lockwood said...

Good questions, Jane, and yes, this is a blog of constant comments!
Has the success of erotica in e-publication driven up the demand for hotness in what editors now want in general?
Definitely. They're all jumping on the hot bus before it cools down again. It's good for those of us who've always written that way but I think others are feeling the pressure and don't feel comfortable with it.

Is there a chance the unwritten "rules" around heroes and heroines could also free up now? I'd like to say "yes" to this but I've seen a lot of writers tie themselves in knots trying to reconcile the old and the new. There still seems to be a lot of discomfort with heroines who are sexually experienced. To me, it's not just a question of being good at the mechanics, but having missed out on all that relationship and growing up stuff that goes along with it.

I'm wondering if some the constraints that drive genre fiction aren't also limiting it. I would love to have more literary elements in my romance reads.
Oh god yes yes I said yes. Indeed yes. Read Pam's The Slightest Provocation--I think you might find it's your cup of tea.


jane george said...

The Slightest Provocation has been on my TBR list since it came out. (Sorry, Pam!)

Pam, maybe you could have the subject of your blog here be "those all-too-long taken-for-gospel notions that make the act fall flat." That would rock.

Jane, thanks for the nudge on Pam's book, I shall dive right in. :-) And double thanks for your answers.

Nicole said...

Sounds like an interesting story, Jane. Thanks for the link from the RR blog. I love Regencies. Don't read them all the time, but they are definitely a staple on my bookshelf when I want something only they can give me.

Pam Rosenthal said...

Thanks to the two Janes.

And to Jane (George): , hey, I'm such a slow writer that I thank my lucky stars I'm still on somebody's TBR list.

And yes, I hope that I'll be able to address my peeves about oversimplified notions about what the market supposedly wants.

Cherie said...

Tea shoud be spicy so why not a spicy regency. Forbidden Shores sounds intriguing. Had to laugh at your "filthmonger" label.

Cherie J

seton said...

so. . . . what I want to know is if jane Lockwood is your real name? You sound like a character from a Bronte novel :-)

Jane Lockwood said...

Seton, I actually answer this question in Pam's post. No, it's not my real name--I publish other stuff under my own name and it's a contractual thing...I monger the filth under the name of Jane Lockwood. And, yes, I chose it for the Bronte-an associations. My first choice of a filth name, Ashe Lefebvre, was considered a bit extreme by my editor!