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Guest Blogger: Wynter Daniels
Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

The newsletter contest (see September 16th’s blog for the details) continues until the 30th. Today’s blog contest winner is posted at the bottom of this blog. Thanks to everyone who played and wished me well! ~DD

Is First Person Too Close for Comfort?

by Wynter Daniel

Thanks to Delilah for inviting me to guest blog here today. I am in awe of the staggering number of great erotic romances she has published.

Like most erotic romances, all my stories are written in third person. This is a given for most authors. I have written stories in first person, years ago when I dabbled in the young adult market. Most YA stories are presented in first person, although I’m not exactly sure why. I guess first person brings the reader in closer with the protagonist and so many teenagers want so desperately to feel a part of something, even if that something is fiction.

But erotic romance and erotica are a whole different animal from YA. As a writer, putting pen to paper (or fingers to keys) and expressing intimate sexual expression is definitely easier when those expressions are happening to him, to her, to John or to Nancy. When you inject me, I or my, it all feels so personal. Same goes for readers, I think.

So imagine my surprise when I started writing a short erotica story in first person. Sometimes a character just comes to me and I have to immediately work on the story. I wrote the first scene of Customer Service—my upcoming Exotica release with Ellora’s Cave—in one sitting, not even very aware that it was in first person.

I went back the next day and tried to rewrite it in third person, but it was as if my muse had turned his back on me. The scene fell flat. So I went back to the original and kept going. It turned into one of those pieces that practically wrote itself. I suppose sometimes the story takes over and the author is merely the channel.

The heroine is a professional mystery shopper, someone who tests customer service in stores and restaurants, a job I have dabbled with on occasion over the past five years. Maybe that’s part of the reason it felt so natural to write in first person. (Not that I have EVER had an experience similar to my protagonist!)

Customer Service is also more erotica than my usual erotic romance.

But you be the judge. Customer Service releases on September 30. Here’s a little about it:

Mystery shopper Carly Weber’s husband divorced her for a snooty sales woman, leaving Carly with a bruised and battered self-image. When she evaluates a new sex toy and lingerie store, she finds much more than kinky gear. One by one and then together, two hunky salesmen pleasure her and give her the best customer service of her life, restoring her confidence in the process.

You’ll find an excerpt HERE.

Comment on my post and I will enter you in a drawing to win my last EC Quickie, Getting Even with Warren.

From DD: The winner of the blog contest prize package is (by random number generator)…Natalie! Natalie, be sure to email me with your snail mail address. Congrats!

15 comments to “Guest Blogger: Wynter Daniels”

  1. Fedora
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 9:32 am · Link

    Hi, Wynter! I can’t say that first-person is my first choice for any of my reading, but I’ve also found that sometimes it is a very powerful and moving choice! Congrats on Customer Service–it sounds like Carly gets some superior service 😉 and we get to enjoy it in first person!

  2. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 9:41 am · Link

    Thanks, Fedora. I agree that first person can make a book more powerful, particularly in a heavy story. This is a pretty light story, but it definitely felt more natural in first person. Sometimes the muse has a mind of her own;-)

  3. Sherry S.
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 9:49 am · Link

    I’m not a real big fan of first person stories but I have read a few that I’ve really enjoyed though. I would love to have that kind of customer service.

  4. Charlie
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 11:15 am · Link

    Hi Wynter!

    I love first person for Urban Fantasy. It get’s you into the character’s head and keeps everyone else a mystery. Look forward to reading about your mystery shopper!


  5. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 11:31 am · Link

    Thanks, Sherry – yes – that kind of customer service would be awesome!

    Cheryl – I keep meaning to read some urban fantasy. Plodding through the TBR pile. I think I will put that on the list – thanks.

  6. Brandy W
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 11:47 am · Link

    For me the shorter stories work well in first person. I see them more as scenes in a person’s life and can handle first person in that respect. It does feel more personal and that maybe my close friend is sitting there telling me something that happened to them.

    I do love my 3rd person though for longer stories and books. The entire time I was reading Twilight I wanted to know what everyone else was thinking.

  7. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 11:56 am · Link

    Good point, Brandy. I think it does work better for shorter stories than long ones. Thankfully, Customer Service is short!

  8. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 11:57 am · Link

    Sorry – meant Charlie above, not Cheryl. 😳

  9. Valerie
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 1:48 pm · Link

    First, congrats to Natalie!!!

    And I do enjoy a well told story in the first person. I feel ivenmore involved with the character.

    in Germany

  10. Shelley Munro
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 2:33 pm · Link

    One of my girlfriends always shuddered when she sees a 1st person story, especially if there are love scenes. She says it’s way too personal to read love scenes written that way.

    Me, I don’t agree. I’ve written a couple of 1st person stories and I certainly don’t have trouble reading them. I think it makes the story much more immediate and gives it a new element of “oomph” 😉

    Congrats on your upcoming story, Wynter. It sounds great.

  11. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 2:42 pm · Link

    Thanks, Shelley. The love scenes are definitely more personal to write that way, but I am with you – I don’t read them more personally as a reader.

  12. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 4:23 pm · Link

    Valerie – It definitely has advantages and disadvantages. I enjoy it with the right story, too.

  13. KC Burn
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 6:56 pm · Link

    First person, eh? You gotta do what the muse tells you, though, and the excerpt’s great! I’m looking forward to seeing how you work a menage in first person — that’s got to be even harder.

  14. Wynter Daniels
    · September 22nd, 2010 at 7:06 pm · Link

    KC – It was a challenge to do the menage in a single POV, but I love the way the story turned out.

  15. savonna
    · September 23rd, 2010 at 5:52 am · Link

    I love the excerpt and can’t wait to read the story. I think if erotic romance or erotica is written in first person it has to be done well. If I’m distracted by the fact that it’s in first person then it takes away from the story and the connection to the characters. However, if I don’t really notice it and the story flows then I’m okay with it.

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