Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Psychology of Sex, God's Greatest Invention

The Question of God: C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud Debate God, Love, Sex, and the Meaning of LifeSex As God Intended

The first known act among people on earth involved sex. Irrespective of ones religion, the annals of history, the genesis of mankind and one of the most potent sources of inspiration If I could give God almighty a gold medal, I would. It would be engraved: In honor of the World's Greatest Invention. If i could email him, let's say, at, I would and with tremendous gratitude.

No, i'm not carrying on about anything that may have happened last night. I am simply inspired by some of the great authors I've read lately, many of whom are relatively unknown, but their work is second to none. Among those writings I've found a most fascinating common denominator. It exist somewhere between romance and exotica. This is not going to be a sexually inflamed post, so hold onto your pants.

It is the compilation of scenes leading to romance that intrigues me most. The intellectual foreplay between characters who are not yet intimate can be promising. Even if nothing develops between them, the idea of what might happen creates romantic suspense. On the light side, author, Kathy Herman hinted at it in her novel, "Never Look Back" (Multnomah Books 2007). Her characters, Ivy & Rue pulled it off with classic appeal.

It's not the simple act of sex that makes a character exciting, but rather, the energy and passion we readers sense in the interaction of personalities involved. It represents a most profound representation of the old cliche, "anticipation is greater than realization." Rarely, is the physical manifestation greater than passion, an ongoing intimacy that far outlives the act.

I am not a clinical psychiatrist or therapist, however, my undergraduate degree in the field does allow a layman's insight adequate to build realistic scenes and plausible characterization with the help of practicing professionals. The end result is a scene that actually jumps off the paper. The use of passion helps us to arrive at authentic cliff hangers at the end of a chapter or scene.

Allow us to sneak inside your characters mind. What is her sexual fantasy? Let's hear from a pro. "Sexual fantasizing is a natural human phenomenon similar to dreaming," says Wendy Maltz, M.S.W. and co-author with Suzie Boss of the newly released book, Private Thoughts: Exploring Women's Sexual Fantasies.

Readers like to go behind the scene and discover what the character is not willing to otherwise reveal. I suggest we writers encroach more upon the characters privacy. What does she think is right or wrong about sex, for example. What were her past sexual disappointments like and which did she enjoy most? Take us there with your writing and we will not put your book down.

Character Definition

We can better demonstrate the psychology of our fictional character by exaggerating his emotional attitude toward sex. Maybe, he is so wrapped up in the idea of making money that he neglects his wife, sexually. Maybe, she has made her career a priority and waits too late to start a family, in her opinion. Maybe, she believes their is a value in suffering, or maybe she is practicing the moral extreme. Explore it. In the words of Pamela Madsen, Fertility/Sex educator, blogger, author of Shameless and founder of The American Fertility Association, "suffering is highly overrated and unnecessary."

Does your character suffer from this self imposed prison?

Sexual Motivation

Explore what motivates her, sexually. You might start by asking that question of yourself. I understand that you are not your fictional character, but you are human and therefore share, at least, some of the same motivations. Take myself for example, I am strongly attracted to intelligent women who are spiritually balanced. Such stimulus is the beginning of a demonstration of passion toward such a person. I might project this source of stimulus upon a fictional character by having his or her partner naturally exhibit intelligent interpretations of simple ideas.

For example, a lady to whom I am attracted, is intellectually inspiring, spiritually reflective and has an aura of quiet sophistication. A nude woman could not move me more. Below is part of a genuine conversation i had with this person, leading to something quiet special. I hope it helps you toward building more romance, passion and sexual intimacy among your characters. Again, i believe God's creativity toward creating people and then sex is a viable path toward understanding who we really are.

She is a native Spanish speaker and my first language is English. We are discussing language but our mutual interest far exceeds the veneer of our dialog.

Here it is:

Me: Pronunciation in Spanish is quiet challenging. It has been an eye opening experience.
Her: How?
Me: Because I have not only learned the language, but it has given me insight into the culture
in terms of how others feel, think and process information.
Her: Interesting. Tell me more, Barry.

Me: I am learning from the mistakes of native Spanish speakers who are learning English. I
think we learn more from our mistakes and failures than from success. The teachings of
success are limited and not always transferable.

Her: I agree...non-transferable due to a wide disparity of human ingenuity, background,
aptitude, etc.

Me: ...the way nouns proceed adjectives in Spanish and (Le, Te, etc.) is quiet formal.

{at this point I began to address her with articles and words that are informal, such
as "tu" for you, rather than "usted."}

She: Is that part of your attraction?
Me: Yes, there's a certain stimulus involved there, isn't it.
She: Yes, it is elliptic in nature.
Me: Elliptic in that in can be inseparable of the person...the source of an attraction.
She: Tell me more.
Me: I think you know.
She: But, I don't guess.
Me: Ok. So i am very much attracted to you.
She: You're making my day.
Me: There are many things different about you that I find fascinating. Do you know what they
She: Tell me.
Me: Part of it permeates from your culutre. For example, of the (hacerse, ponerse, volverse a
convertise) many ways of expressing change and adaptation, you are more inclined towards
the spiritual, the unwritten, the unspoken genuine communication. And I talk too much, some

She: But I'm not complaining.
Me: I hope you realize where this is going. But, you're not a guesser, so I'll tell you.
By the way, I'm often wrong about practical things but equally right about the spiritual,
sensory based stuff.....the abstract....the genuine.

She: So, tell me.
Me: If i could turn back the hands of time, I would place more value, principally, upon
intellectual impetus
She: Really
Me: Energy
She: Wooowww. That's great.
Me: Inspiration....
She: Thank you
Me: Reflection
She: So, am I to understand you've turned back the hands of time and embraced those values?
Actually, Barry, you have long ago done so. That's who you are.

Me: I guess so. That's what I value above all.
Above money.
Above beauty.
Above all. (all of which describes you, of course)

Romance builds. The best that sex has to offer is often implied.

Color Your Writing with Controversy

" You know what piss me off about white people?," Jane Doe asked.

How about that for an opening line? Make it controversial and color your writing with interest.

Maybe, Jane Doe was Latino and lived in a small southern American town. Maybe, there was a small concentration of Latinos there. Perhaps, a crime took place. The townspeople were disturbed. The sheriff could not find the culprit and the people needed a scapegoat. They blamed her brother, Jose Doe. I know it is an old plot, but it is real. Real people with real blood running through their veins experience such injustice everyday, worldwide. Allow them to "happen" on paper.

Get in touch with broken characters. Talk to people you meet and look for it. Who knows, you may be the turning point toward their healing. I'm not suggesting you "fix" people, however, I am suggesting you observe "brokeness." Most of us are or have been broken somewhere throughout life. Have you ever had a broken heart? I'm willing to bet you were not the most pleasant person to associate with at the time, were you? Okay, take that thought and exaggerate. This will help towards character development.

Okay, get busy. Write.