Friday, March 25, 2011
In an erotic romance, if the author picks the wrong names for the protagonists - it will destroy the mood.
"Herbert slid his arm around Zelda's waist and bent his head to kiss her neck."
Okay - a good author can rock those names, but neither of those names would be my first choice (no offense to any Herberts or Zeldas who might be reading). Names set the tone. They help make the sexy mood sexier.
Likewise, in a D/s scene the names the top and bottom use are important. My personal kink does not go with Daddy and baby girl, though I know that for MANY people those would get people fanning themselves and asking, "Damn, is it warm in here?" For me, as a reader, it doesn't fly. To each their own kink.
When I write BDSM erotic romances, I like going with Sir or Master for my male dom but I'm always a little uncertain about what to use as a nickname for my submissive. At an RT panel last year, I heard an editor say that if they read another BDSM romance where the Dom hero called the sub heroine "Kitten" just once more, they'd puke. When I got back to my hotel room, I opened up a BDSM romance I was working on and did a global replace because, yeah, my hero was calling the heroine "Kitten." Sigh. I changed it to pet. Then realized how many times I used the nickname and it seemed like it was every other word.
I've had the hero use "honey" or "sweetheart." Those work in vanilla or BDSM scenarios. But sometimes I really want to use something a little...exotic. Something that makes the story seem kinkier. BDSMier. Yeah, I know BDSMier isn't a word - but you get what I mean. Go with me here.
Was "the bard" right? Would a rose by any other name still smell as sweet? Or is the name the thing? I'd welcome suggestions. What do you enjoy hearing a sub call his/her dominant? What would you like a dominant to call his/her sub?