Another truly excruciating writing session today in the salt mines, writing this sex scene. It’s a turning point for Adam and Cate: the night when they realise they’re actually in love with each other, and as a result the sex feels very intimate and emotionally powerful. It’s a moment when we can’t make any jokes, and have to find something that sincerely conveys the characters’ changing relationship.
But of course, comedy is our defence mechanism, and I (Mel) have been craughing helplessly as I type the lines Anthony is riffing…
Writing a sex scene collaboratively is a new nightmare. I’m paralysed with where to begin, my fingers hesitating over the keyboard while behind me, on the couch in my study, Anthony sips from a mug of tea and embarks on an agonisingly detailed off-the-cuff description to get the ball rolling.
It is the most appalling encounter, which features the heroine singing, “Sing me a song, a song of the sea/Bird’s Eye Fish Fingers” and then whipping out a loudly buzzing vibrator she refers to as “Mr Do-Me”. Anthony reaches the end of this dreadful narrative, sits back and says, “So just write the opposite of that.”
Big news this month: we have finally finished our first draft of The Hot Guy and will be sending it out to our beta readers ASAP! We were so excited we just had to take a photo of that climactic final moment:
Here’s a sneak peek at some really first-rate drafting work we did today on The Hot Guy.
As The Hot Guy draft inches agonisingly slowly towards completion, we thought we’d share some of the disgraceful contents of a little document we keep called “Too Hot For The Hot Guy“, which is where we paste the jokes that are too bad even for us.
The Hot Guy is pretty close to a full draft now. Anthony wanted to have one done by the end of the financial year, and I don’t think we’re far from achieving that.
However, I wanted to give you a little insight into how we write together. Last week, we wrote a bit in which Cate, our heroine, goes to buy drinks in a horrible dive bar called Bar Up.
Since Anzac Day is coming up, here’s one of my favourite bits of The Hot Guy. In this scene, our heroine Cate is travelling with her boyfriend Adam (the Hot Guy of the title) to his rural hometown, Ladbroke, where Metadata, the short film Adam has directed, will be competing in the local film festival.
We have been working on The Hot Guy since last year, but rather than switching writing duties alternately as we did then, we’ve recently switched to a more collaborative ‘writer’s room’ method in which we actually sit together and workshop as we write, saying the dialogue aloud and destroying ourselves laughing at each other’s jokes.
As we’re both film critics, the book lampoons pretty much every aspect of the film world: from comic-book nerdboys to arthouse snobs; from hyperbolic blockbusters and young adult franchise adaptations to cringey 1980s Australian historical melodramas.
Anyway, yesterday we were writing a scene in which our heroine, Cate, discovers her friend is reading a torrid fantasy novel in a series called The Fur Chronicles, which is set in the ‘Kingdom of the Cats’ and has evolved – as certain franchises do – from a series of horrible, cat-themed, self-published erotic ebooks.