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A Writer’s Guide to Kiss Scenes

Warning: Lack of Seriousness Ahead

It has been a long time since I went on a rant but I have just read a book that contained a kiss scene so bad that I thought I would teach professional writers, ADULTS, how to kiss someone properly. One book might have caused this post but trust me, I have seen a lot of badly described and uncomfortable kiss scenes in books. Apparently a lot of professional writers have never had a good snog.

So what qualifies me to teach writers how to kiss? Well, I write and I have kissed a lot of girls, a lot of guys, and been kissed right back by both. So I am using my bi powers for good today. Think of my as your dark haired, brooding YA love interest who is going to save your leading lady from bad kisses. (Because it is usually girls who are on the receiving end of these horrific lip assaults)

1. STOP KISSING PEOPLE TO SHUT THEM UP

This one is number one for a reason. Now imagine you are ranting because upset, excited or angry and then some knob decides to kiss you to shut you up because you were talking too much. What would you do? Well, in real life Mister Kisser is getting a knee in the balls, especially if I am not even dating him.

Why do writers think this is sexy? Your character is being a jerk and in real life he would get slapped. Being an insensitive twat isn’t attractive. Would you like it if I man you barely knpw and has been an ass the whole time you have known him randomly kissed you? No! Consent and waiting for the right moment is sexy, writers.

Also I don’t know about you but when I am upset, angry, excited or generally ranting I am not in the mood for kisses.

2. Don’t “Grab” her face

Unless you are writing a very forceful and intentionally unpleasant kiss scene cut down on the grabbing. I have read too many books where the guy “grabs” (they actually use the word grab) the female character’s chin/jaw. Why? To me that just conjures images of his big hand grabbing her entire lower jaw and shoving his face into hers. Not sexy. Oh and don’t shove your face into theirs, also not sexy.

To kiss someone nicely you GENTLY cup one of their cheeks while pulling them in with your other hand by the waist or hip. The cheek cupping hand can then slide around into the hair as the kiss deepens. No yanking or grabbing involved.

3. Humans are NOT Food

Cannibalism is frowned upon.

I don’t know about you but when I kiss someone I am not thinking about eating them. I am not talking about vampires or other fantasy creatures but writers describing kissing scenes like their character is eating something. That is disgusting. I recently read a kiss scene where the word “nibble” was used 6 times. SIX TIMES. It is a woman not a Kit Kat. Stop nibbling on her. The same goes for excessive neck or body part licking, overly detailed french kiss descriptions or generally using words you would use to describe eating something. You are kissing someone, not licking the insides out of a Cream Egg.

Also why do characters in bad kiss scenes always think about what their partner tastes like? That is gross and doesn’t happen in real life unless you are kissing someone with awful breath.

4. Would you Enjoy the Kiss?

Do onto your characters what you want done to yourself. Usually that is bad advice but when it comes to kisses it applies. If you are trying to write an enjoyable kiss just think about what it is like to be kissed. It isn’t hard. Would you like it if someone grabbed your face and started kissing you when you barely know them? Probably not. What if a guy started licking your neck for a long time? Also probably a no. (yes I have seen that in a book before)

Put yourself in your character’s situation.

So to summarise:

  • Dont kiss people to shut them up
  • Buy a thesaurus so you can describe kisses better.
  • Go and make out with someone and call it book research.

Happy Kissing Everybody

1 thought on “A Writer’s Guide to Kiss Scenes”

  1. Don’t believe these types of physical interactions can be well written unless the writers themselves are well experienced in these situations.

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