Let’s Talk About Sex! Part One: Size Matters

by Suzanne Lahna
Pitch-Perfect-Stills-and-Gifs lets talk about sex gif

It’s no secret that the last month of summer is always the hottest; that’s why Word Vagabond has chosen August to share our three-part series on how to write the hottest sex scenes. We’re going to walk you through step by step to show you what to do – and what not to do – to make the sparks really fly the next time you sit down to write an erotic scene.

First off: Yes, bigger is better. And no, I’m not talking about male genitalia, I’m talking about your sex scene.

Rule the first: thou shalt write a sex scene that is no less than one and a half pages.

If you can’t pull that off, go back to the drawing board. Sex with your characters should be about passion and desire, and occasionally emotions at varying levels of depth. If it’s all three, you will have no trouble at all making the cut. A paragraph is not a sex scene; that’s a cop-out for a ‘fade to black’ (which is fine if the sex is necessary for plot, not character development; do this to up the pacing when needed). If three to twelve minutes has been your average in the bedroom, fire your partner. If you are this partner, fire yourself immediately.

And on that note, let’s talk about foreplay!

Foreplay is a wonderful and beautiful thing that can be used to show how well your characters know one another, and should always include moments of consent when the situation calls for it (i.e., anything that would not be dub-con or non-con. Your happy PNR pairings should have A LOT of consent). If they don’t know each other very well, let it be awkward. Awkward is the new adorable, trust me on this. Humorous sex scenes are incredible on paper; they read real and true.

On the ‘science of sex’ side of foreplay, always prepare the partners if any type of penetrative sex is happening. This goes for both anal and vaginal. Sex should not be painful for a woman, even if it is her first time or if he has a wider-than-normal cock.

Let me repeat: There is no reason for sex to be painful for women.

yes water based lubricant sex scene 1

A fair amount of fingering should be involved in the proceedings, always starting at one and working your way up if it is their first time having penetrative vaginal sex, or if you’re having anal sex. If lube is required, the lube should be water-based, and never ever flavored. Always remember that the g-spot is to women what the prostate is to men, and work to include this erogenous zone in your scenes. Also, weird but cute erogenous zones work great for the awkward couples, like behind the knee or that spot by your hip.

Your foreplay should last at least five to fifteen minutes; aim for ten. Foreplay includes kissing and working up into sex, as any couple or group would.

Anal sex with any gender will require a fair amount of preparation: usually slow and methodical, and at least three fingers before a penis should enter anyone’s ass. Again, water-based lube is the best all-purpose choice, though a silicone-based is longer lasting and more suitable for anal sex.(Do not sit there and tell me you think saliva can be used as lube; it cannot. It will hurt and be harmful. And STAY AWAY FROM KY. It contains awful things which you can read about briefly here, and in detail here.) If a man is participating in anal sex, always include the prostate. And please, if you’re going to do anal, think about rimming. It’s a wonderful part of sex and really should be brought up more in anal sex scenes (thank you How To Get Away With Murder).

But of course, I cannot write this post without bringing up actual sizes, so let’s roll out a bit of science for all of us to remember the next time we’re taking our characters’ clothes off.

For the ladies: the average depth of the vagina is only three to four inches. In some abnormal cases, the vagina can be five to six, but this is RARE. This is why a ten-inch penis is not only uncommon, but if encountered could be painful and would definitely not fit into a woman’s vagina (massive dildos are designed for anal sex, not vaginal!). Yes, it stretches, but it’s not a pocket universe; there’s only so much you can fit in there. Remember this when you’re writing the next part!

For the boys: the average penis is six inches long. That’s it. Also, girth. Girth is the circumference around the penis, and anything pushing five inches is going to take a lot of prep work and simply doesn’t happen often in nature. Remember – girth is circumference, not width!
For an average male: six inches long, with maybe four inches of girth (or one and a half to two inches wide).
For a very hung man: eight inches long and six inches around (no more than three inches wide) is well within the realm of possibility, while still requiring a fair amount of the previously mentioned foreplay.
(I like to keep width below three inches, because anything beyond that sounds absolutely terrifying and simply unrealistic).5.5 inch dildo from love honey sex scene 1

Obviously, you can go bigger, but as a writer and editor, I would save the ten-inch dicks for seriously out-there paranormal romance. Leave the unnaturally large genitals to the super-human characters; it will make for better writing.

Want to know more about what a penis of such-and-such measurement actually looks like in relation to the human form? I highly recommend you take a trip to the nearest sex store, check out the dildo selection, and see for yourself. If you don’t have one near you, go to lovehoney.com and check out the videos on each item to see how it stacks up against the average hand (just like the photo above, featuring a 5.5″ length or Penis of Average Size). This will give you a much better idea of what you’re actually dealing with, regardless of your sex life.

Sex scenes are like every other aspect of writing – research well and practice often!

Part 2 will post by this Friday, and Part 3 will be up next week! So stay tuned for more sex scene tips and tricks!

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