Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Guest Blog: Jean Joachim

Today Scorched Sheets is pleased to welcome contemporary romance author, Jean Joachim! Thank you for dropping by, Jean!

Jean Joachim

I write both sensual and sweet romance. Each has a different audience. Currently I’m working on a sequel to my sweet romance, “Sunny Days, Moonlit Nights”. How can you have a romance with no sex? You can, as long as you have sexual tension. It’s a challenge to create sexual tension not ending in consummated lovemaking.
While I prefer writing sensual romance as I enjoy writing love scenes ending in satisfaction, I find the sweet romance writing to be more challenging. I have to rely more on plot and can’t fall back on adding a love scene when I’m feeling lazy.
How do you create sexual tension without going “all the way”? Here is the passion:

“She gazed into his eyes and saw his desire glittering. She was both thrilled and frightened by his closeness, the feel of his warm breath on her skin, the heat coming from his chest so close to hers. He reached around her waist and pulled her closer for a more passionate kiss, crushing her breasts against him, parting her lips with his, making way for his tongue to take possession of her mouth.”

Here is the reason it can’t go further:

“Until Hank filed the papers, she wasn’t even legally separated. She couldn’t take chances and continue on this path with Mike. The moonlight was sure to lead to the bedroom…and the possibility of a lawsuit from Brad. She stood up reluctantly, and Mike followed.”
After a steamy kiss, Sunny pulls away to save her beloved, Mike, from the wrath of her soon-to-be-ex  husband. These are quotes from “Sunny Days, Moonlit Nights”. It is important to establish sexual tension, their strong desire to sleep together, or refraining from satisfying her desire has no meaning.
In the sequel, called, “April’s Kiss in the Moonlight”, we also establish sexual tension:

“What did you study in Paris, Farm Boy?” She asked, moving close to the shed.

“I studied French language, culture, and…”he said as he got in front of her, forcing her back against the wall of the shed.

He put a hand on either side of her head, against the shed wall and moved right up against her his chest lightly touching hers but close enough for her to feel heat coming from him.

“…and…how to make love to a woman,” he whispered in her ear, “would you like me to show you?”
His breath was warm on her neck, his lips a fraction of an inch from her skin. Her pulse quickened and her breathing became shallow. He lowered his lips to barely brush her skin starting with the place where her pulse was beating wildly and skimming down slowly to her shoulder and back up again. She closed her eyes for a moment, then put her hands against this hard chest and pushed him away.

“I believe you,” she gasped, moving away quickly, trying to regain control.

It doesn’t go further because she is engaged to another man. After our heroine, April breaks her engagement, sexual tension with Gavin builds in another short love scene:

“Her hands slid up his arms to his shoulders as he pulled her closer. The scent of pine soap mixed with a hint of smoke greeted her nostrils as she buried her burning face in his shoulder. He held her silently for several minutes until she regained her composure. When she stepped back and looked up at him, he lowered his lips to hers in a sweet kiss. She knew she shouldn’t let him kiss her but felt powerless to stop him. Desire rose in her chest and when she didn’t resist, he deepened the kiss and crushed her against him.”

This scene was broken up by the appearance of Aunt Laura, enough to cool anyone’s ardor! We’re only on page 21 and our hero and heroine have already expressed their passion for each other more than once. The plot must now keep them coming together but moving away from each other as well.
April must make up her mind what she will do at the end of the summer. We think we know where she is headed, but our hero, Gavin, is not so sure. This love scene in the summer rain on the roof of the firehouse is steamy:

“The wetter they got, the more passionate their kiss. Gavin took her face in his hands as he probed her mouth with his tongue. April stepped closer to him and wound her arms around his neck, losing her hands in his wet hair. His arms lowered to her waist and held her so close to him, their shirts joined by wetness as if it were raining glue, a piece of paper wouldn’t fit between them. As his tongue teased hers, she felt herself melting into his kiss, her body soft against his. His hand crept up, closing on her breast. A soft moan escaped from her mouth as desire shot through her body. 

            He came to his senses first and backed away from her, feeling a rush of cold air as their drenched shirts pulled apart. April stood there, her breathing ragged, staring at him, covering her chest with her arms.  He raised his hand to her face and traced two raindrops down her cheek with his forefinger before speaking.

            “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have done that…I forgot you belong to somebody else,” he said.”

            Again we pull them apart as Gavin will not move in on a woman who belongs to another man. I find it necessary to have an “organic” reason, one that makes sense with the plot, is consistent, rather than relying on a decision to remain apart based solely on moral grounds. I’m a stickler for logic.
Reviewers say my sweet romance is “spicy”. I believe it gives the reader the tang of sexual tension without the fulfillment, which is what I believe sweet romance readers want. I hope to be able to continue to write both sweet and sensual romance. I will write more sweet romance if I can continue to find believable ways to keep my hero and heroine wanting each other but remaining just out of reach.

Do you have someone in your past you would like to reconnect with? Caroline Davis White wasn't looking for Mickey, now Mike Foster, her childhood crush, she was fleeing her philandering husband, seeking peace and quiet, time to reflect on changing her life. But there was Mike, saving her from a mishap...again, bigger than life and even more handsome. 

A well-known artist, Sunny thought she could escape, disappear back to the cabin where she spent her summers as a child. But she was wrong. Her husband refused to let her go. There hadn't been a divorce in Brad White's family...ever! And he wasn't about to start breaking the tradition now.  Could Caroline shake him loose and what about Mike? Where did he fit into her life?


barnes & noble -


  1. I am a sensual romance writer! I enjoy reading the erotic stuff, but sweet and sensual is more my speed!

  2. Thanks for having me here, today, Shay. To K.T. Bishop, I'm with you. I love writing sensual romance.

  3. Lovely post...and sometimes, certain books just don't need it go fact, it might even ruin the story if it did. You know?

    And I love reading all levels: sweet, sensual and saucy!

  4. I like heat levels that go with the stories. I read and write both sweet and sweetly sensual. I also like a satisfying end to a "moment," but the moment must fit the story. I am more in tune with reading and writing when I tap the emotions of the characters. I love the way the rain is an extra character in Jean's demonstrated scene above. And yes, in my sweets, I use a LOT of sexual tension and a lot of interruptions to the moments at hand. The thing to remember during such times is they must be logical interruptions, as Jean said. Coming to senses works only so far. But subtle reminders of wrongness can creep in - for instance in the form of exploring a deep kiss and finding a chain with a medallion attached that one of them was given by another (my upcoming Hidden Echoes). I love thwarting the love scene. Each successive interruption leads to heightened sensual tension. Even in a sensual read, the writer has to be careful not to let the final moment happen too soon...or what's left for the reader to anticipate?

  5. Bowchickawowow Jean...great writing