If They'll Make It Out Together

I like books, I like kissing, and I like kissing in books. {I do not, however, particularly care for kissing books, unless they be old books without germs.}

But for me, kissing is a finale {because I don't write sex scenes, and I'll only write a wedding in a fantasy}. If my book has any sort of foundation on romantic tension, allowing my characters to kiss too far from the end just pulls the rug out from under my tension. I'm left with only the plot tension to carry me through. Not bad, but not as good as it could be. Because, admit it, would you rather your heroine be thrown into the climax with the boy she already loves and who loves her back OR thrown into the climax with the boy she doesn't quite trust, while he goes out of his way to keep her alive despite her cold shoulder.

Maybe I like romantic tension too much, but I prefer the second story. I love books in which you know they're absolutely meant to be together, yet neither of them seem to keen on noticing it. And then the guy realizes it first - he always does - but the girl is still oblivious to all his kindness. And you're reading, going aaaaaghhhh!! can't you see it!!! It's almost as bad as reading a thriller in which you don't know if they'll get out alive. Same thing.

And that is why, my kisses come at the end of books. Because if I give them a kiss in the middle {unless, of course, I'm about to "forever" separate them} my romantic tension goes poof! And however much I adore wondering if they'll make it out in one piece...my heart will beat even faster if I'm also wondering if they'll make it out together.

What about you? How do you like to keep up the romantic tension?


Anne Gallagher said...

I don't write YA, and I don't write sex scenes either, but I do write kissing scenes. In my last book I had exactly three, one in the first third (exploratory), one toward the end (built of tension and longing), and one right at the end (the big Kahuna).

I think if they're done well, they can add to the sexual tension right along with the tension of the plot.

But of course, the kiss at the end has to be the "big" one. The Happily Ever After.

Paula said...

Ah, yes, I do love the angst. My two MC's wait until the middle-ish for their first kiss and I think (hope) it's worth the reader's wait. I LOVE the scene and loved writing it. As for the sex, I like to leave it to the readers imagination whether or not they do or don't : ) Of course, a bit of jeolously and immenent death is never a bad thing : ) to up the angst.