Guest Post: To fade or not to fade by Natasha West

Howdy all!

Natasha West is here to talk about sex. Really.

Before you dive into the guest post, I want to mention she’s giving away one copy of Chase Me to one lucky winner. Enter the contest below.

Here’s Natasha West.

To fade, or not to fade, that is the question.

Some readers prefer their lesfic romances with a lot of sex in them. I don’t think we need to ask ourselves why. But some readers prefer the ‘Fade to Black’ approach to sex scenes. I’ve done both, from my sexually explicit Hawke series to vaguer, pan-to-the-window style love scenes featured in many of my romantic comedies. But which way is the right way to go in lesfic? Should a writer describe sex in vivid detail or should they let the reader’s imagination run wild?

My answer is, there isn’t one answer. There’s only one question writers should ever ask themselves about including sex and it’s this: does it serve the story?

In several of my romantic comedies, I allude heavily to the fact that the two central characters are knocking boots, but I didn’t include explicit sex because it didn’t feel right in the flow of the book. I felt that if I stopped to give you a clear picture of the sex, even if it was absolutely scorching, then I’d be putting my foot on the brake, slowing the overall story. It didn’t serve the story and thus it didn’t go in.

That often happens in romantic comedy, that explicit sex doesn’t fit. Sex can have its place in comedy, but you must take the temperature of a given story to know if you’re going to disrupt the tone you’re building by including it. So, if I do a tone read and I feel it doesn’t hurt and more importantly, that it adds something, then I’m going to do my best to give you the hottest scene possible. And I’ll try to find a laugh somewhere in the process.

But some comedy can be completely knocked off course if you get graphic and I consider that every time I come to that moment in a book. If that’s the case, that I think you’re going to get pulled away by a sex scene, my thumb will swing down on explicit sex and the reader can picture how it went down any way they want. If they want to at all.

And then there are the books that will absolutely benefit from getting into the dirty details. My new book, Chase Me, does indeed have sex in it. Not the most prolonged scenes I’ve ever written, but they give you some sexual details. Why? Two reasons. Firstly, the central characters have ridiculous and destructive sexual chemistry, which is what starts the story rolling in the first place. To tell you that they’re madly attracted to one another from second one and never let you see the climax (so to speak) of that attraction?  Reader, I would be doing you a grave disservice.

Secondly, Chase Me is a thriller. It builds tension throughout. Tension needs to be broken occasionally or it becomes too stressful read. So I shot my two birds, sexual tension and plot tension, with a stone made of lesbian sex. Because it made sense to do so.

But if you’re a reader and you prefer Fade to Black, you have my full permission to skip the naughty stuff. Maybe next book, I’ll keep it a little more chaste. I guess we’ll see.

CHASE ME by Natasha West

E-book $2.99
Also available in Kindle Unlimited
Release Date: August 15, 2017
Romantic Thriller

For Beth Carmichael, a do-gooder doctor with a predilection for logic, it should have been just another day at the accident and emergency unit, treating patients and fixing boo boos. But when Gracie Bloom walks into her exam room with a fractured arm, the world turns on its head.

Because as well as drawing Beth to her like a moth to a sexy flame, Gracie is a con artist, ripping off rich people whenever she gets the chance. And after Gracie’s latest attempt to part someone from their cash goes badly wrong, she ends up a witness to a terrible crime, committed by people with resources and reach, forcing Gracie to run for her life.

And even though Gracie and Beth are practically strangers, Beth ends up being dragged into the chaos, finding herself running with the hot grifter, her own life going up in flames in the process.

Beth and Gracie are on the lam together, trying to figure out how to get back to the lives they knew. But are they gone for good? And if they could find their way back, can overly rational Beth and street-smart Gracie find anything in common besides raw sexual attraction?

Amazon US / Amazon UK
Amazon CA / Amazon AUS 


Natasha West has been writing for many years but has only recently plunged into the world of writing lesbian romances after she decided that a life of enjoying her own shouldn’t go to waste. She likes to write complicated characters who aren’t looking for love, but find it anyway. Via the funniest, hottest routes possible.


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Thanks Natasha! And, best of luck to everyone who enters the giveaway.

About TBM

TB Markinson is an American who's recently returned to the US after a seven-year stint in the UK and Ireland. When she isn't writing, she's traveling the world, watching sports on the telly, visiting pubs in New England, or reading. Not necessarily in that order. Her novels have hit Amazon bestseller lists for lesbian fiction and lesbian romance. She cohosts the Lesbians Who Write Podcast ( with Clare Lydon. TB also runs I Heart Lesfic (, a place for authors and fans of lesfic to come together to celebrate lesbian fiction.
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2 Responses to Guest Post: To fade or not to fade by Natasha West

  1. So true I struggle with this all the time and wonder about putting in at least one scene, especially since I struggle with writing the dang things!

    • Natasha West says:

      They’re the hardest things to write. It takes me about five times as long to write a sex scene as any other kind of scene. You have to walk the line of being descriptive without getting so graphic that it becomes off putting and unromantic.

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