So how does one go about writing a kissing scene? What things are important when laying out "the kiss"? There are several areas that you should consider when developing your kissing scene.
SETTING/MOOD: Setting is very important when it comes to a kiss, because it sets up the mood for the smooch. For instance, a kiss in a dark parking garage has a completely different feel that a kiss in front of a cozy fire. Include descriptive details to put the reader into the scene so that they can feel the ambiance.
DISTANCE/PROXIMITY: In order to kiss, your characters must come in close proximity. How do they come together in a way that builds tension and increases a readers need to turn the page? There has to be either conflict (a fall/rescue, locked in a room all alone) or heightened awareness/desire from both characters that moves them toward one another. Make is good. Make it count.
SENSES 1-5: This is a no-brainer. Use the five senses to ramp up the kiss.
- Touch - Describe the feeling a character gets when their lips meet the other's. Soft, hard, yielding, demanding? Does her face feel smooth, his whiskery? Does goose bumps shimmer across her skin when he digs his fingers into her hair? What are their physical reactions?
- Taste - A kiss can have a taste. I know that could be gross, given a character's love for garlic, but be creative. Have them taste of honey or minty chocolate. Your character could have just eaten a kiwi or an orange. Make it unique.
- Sight - Since you are in a character's POV, describe what the other one looks like as they move in for a kiss. What gestures or facial expressions do they see? Does she lick her lips in anticipation? Does he clench his jaw or deepen a dimple? This should be the easiest sense to use, so make it good.
- Smell - What do the characters smell like? Are they wearing cologne? Do they smell like they have been cooking hamburgers or have been outdoors? Don't forget to include the smells of the setting. What about the salty sea breeze at the beach or the fragrant roses of the garden? Let the setting help you out here.
- Sound - While we might not want to admit it, there are sounds when we kiss. You don't want to write about the smack or slurp that might occur, but you can mention the soft moan, quick intake of breath, shaky exhale, or a deep beat of a heart. Don't forget about the sounds of the setting. Soft rain hitting the window can set the mood up nicely for a kiss.
WRAP UP/LOOSEN UP: So what happens after the kiss? Well, if this is close to the beginning of the book, you need to have some conflict come in. Let someone walk in on them. Have one be angry with the other for crossing the line and kissing them against their will (even though they participated willingly enough in the kiss!). You have got to keep the tension going so readers will want to turn that page and see if they kiss again.
There is nothing better than a great kiss with someone you love. I know, because I've been married to the same wonderful man for 27 years. He has given me a Valentine every day since Saturday. Chocolate covered strawberries, a date to see The Vow (sigh!), and a dozen red roses. Were there kisses involved? What do you think? ;)
It's Valentine's Day....have you had your kiss yet?
Is there anything you would add to make a kissing scene even better? What authors write the best kissing scenes, in your opinion? Do share!
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Sherrinda is wife to "Pastor John" and mother to three giant sons and one gorgeous daughter. A born and bred Texan, she writes historical romance filled with fun, faith, and forever love.