What a better thing to talk about in February? Romance, love, Valentines…thoughts automatically go toward kisses.
Stories have included them since as long as men have held pens…or rocks – whatever they could use. The heart of any GOOD romance is a kiss. THE kiss. When two people share the first test of love’s possibilities.
So lets start this BlogFEST off with a Smooch worth talkin’ about.
Deborah Raney is best known for her beautiful novel A Vow To CHerish which became an award winning film in 1999. Since then, Deb has written many other poignant and thoughtful novels winning top awards like The Rita, the ACFW Book of the Year Award, and the People’s Choice Award.
To learn more about her books, visit her website at: http://www.deborahraney.com/
So Deb, what makes a GREAT kissing scene?
I once wrote an article about how a writer could write a totally romantic scene without the hero and heroine’s lips ever meeting. These are some preludes to a kiss that make the kiss itself almost an afterthought:
LONGING LOOKS. Long before the hero and heroine have spoken a word to each other, they communicate with their eyes. Across a crowded room, appreciative looks speak fathoms. Sharing an umbrella in the rain they play tag with furtive glances. The eyes have it, and attraction is mutual and obvious.
STOLEN TOUCHES. Once the couple begins to fall in love, any excuse will do: his hand to the small of her back as he guides her through a door, shoulder to shoulder on a narrow park bench, a lingering handshake, a wisp of hair brushed away from the cheek. And as love becomes bolder, trembling fingers entwined, and the tender stroke of a thumb. A bit of mustard wiped sensuously from a lip. A sleepy head heavy upon a shoulder, an embrace filled with longing, even a featherlight kiss atop of the head of an unknowing lover.
SENSUOUS SCENTS. People falling in love are all about smelling good. Not simply because they desire to smell good for each other and thus douse themselves with perfume. But also because, once you start to love someone, you begin to perceive everything about them as good––including their scent. So the same stick of peppermint gum that smells merely tolerable on the breath of the stranger on the bus, causes you to swoon on the breath of the one you love. Remind your reader how delicious your hero and heroine smell to each other, and you’ll have them thinking about kissing whether it happens or not.
WORDS, SPOKEN, WHISPERED, BARELY BREATHED. Often the words that draw a couple together in the beginning of a novel are words of conflict. Necessary in a novel, if not so much in real life. But the words that render a kiss superfluous are tender words. They may be eloquent and profound, but they may just as easily be simple and straightforward. They may even be unspoken, but profoundly understood.
ACTIONS THAT SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. When a heroine performs an act of kindness or gives a gift that required much thought or great sacrifice, she may as well have laid a juicy kiss on the hero. And likewise, when a hero gives something to a woman that requires self-sacrifice or real effort on his part, that selfless love says far more than any kiss ever could.
Pepper here: Wow, Deb- what fantastic tips. Do you mind putting those tips into practice with an excerpt of one of your favorite kissing scenes you’ve written?
And here is one of my favorite kissing scenes from Almost Forever, to be released this May. It is the first book in the new Hanover Falls Novels series from Howard/Simon & Schuster. The scene is from the point of view of my hero, Garrett Edmonds, as he sits in a cold car with Bryn Hennesey after a day of ice skating.
The decision to kiss for the first time is the most crucial in any love story. It changes the relationship of two people much more strongly than even the final surrender; because this kiss already has within it that surrender.
-Emil Ludwig (1881-1948)
Bible Kissing Quote – yeah, the Bible has them too 😉
“Kiss me—full on the mouth!
Yes! For your love is better than wine,
headier than your aromatic oils.
The syllables of your name murmur like a meadow brook.
No wonder everyone loves to say your name! ” – Song of Solomon 1:2-3
What’s important here? Well, the kiss of course, but the picture of the kiss. Not just lips on lips, but a comparison to taste, smell, and sound – all in two sentences. WOW!! Wine, aromatic oils, syllables murmur like a meadow brook. Go Solomon!