Friday, September 10, 2010

It's Too Darn Hot

I got ssssssssssssssssteam heat. We're having a heatwave, a tropical heat wave. The temperatures rising, it isn't suprising, it certainly can. Can can.

Thank you. Thank you, very much. Hold your applause.

By the time this blog posts, the heat will have broken. I hope. I pray. It doesn't change the reality of the sweaty, don't-touch-me, never comfortable, can't sleep kind of heat. The heat that I hate. Seriously, my genetic design is way too Northern European to survive in the California desert. Yes, occasionally I get fooled into content subservience by air conditioning and the fake suburban biome that I'm in, but then nature reminds me that people like me thrive best in places like Ireland and my particular location was never intended to host mammalian life forms.

So what's my point?

Well, as usual, it has to do with romance. Heat is almost synonymous with sex. The hotter it is, the sexier things get. It most likely has to do with the lack of clothing that goes along with hot weather. The sultry climates seem to ooze sensuality. Even sweat can be sexy -- the golden glow from the sun glittering on someones glistening skin. When it's so hot, people drop inhibitions in order to cool down.

Not me. Seriously.

If it's that hot, the last thing I want is to be touched by an equally hot, sweaty person. I don't appreciate the natural pheromones from sweat -- I see sweat as sticky and smelly. Hot is not sexy.

Thank goodness my setting is Elizabethan England. They wore layer upon layer of clothing because Europe was in the midst of a mini-Ice Age. Not only was the clothing opulent, it was practical. It kept them warm. And there's a lot to be said about the implied sensuality of what clothing conceals as much as it reveals. That, and undressing can be fun. Where's the anticipation and the mystery when the leads are already mostly naked?

Personally, I find the need to stay warm much more sexy than cloying heat. One time a stranger mentioned that he had eight children. In response to my look of shock, he told me it would have been cheaper to get the heater fixed. It took me a moment to get the joke.

My w.i.p. is set during Christmas. In the midst of the heat, it's been a definite escape to write about frost. It never gets cold enough here for me to long for warmth, so it's a good thing it was rarely truly warm in my historical world. My next book will be set in early spring, so there will be plenty of cold rain and gloomy days to satisfy the most sun-disgruntled desert dweller.

What do you find more enticing? Hot or cold? Which environment lends itself best to the fantasy of romance?


February Grace said...

Does it make me a wimp to say neither?

Honestly- Spring is my favorite season, followed by autumn though that is depressing because when the leaves die it means 8 months or so until we see warmth again. We have very long winters. Last year's was the sixth snowiest on record. By the end I was just climbing the walls.

Though as much as I loathe either extreme personally I will agree with you that for writing purposes, cold beats heat every time for romance. Long gorgeous coats, boots, amazing hats and romantic scenery...candle light and roaring fires...what more could you want?

Hope the heat has broken by now!


Candyland said...

I HATTTEEEE the heat. Give me cold weather any day.

Raquel Byrnes said...

I think the winter is more sexy...rainstorms, fireplaces, cozy blankets to snuggle under. I too agree that the more clothes in the period romance heighten the mystery.

Edge of Your Seat Romance

dolorah said...

See, you're not so unusual after all Erin. We all seem to prefer cold; and romance in the cold.

I'm still laughing over this one:

One time a stranger mentioned that he had eight children. In response to my look of shock, he told me it would have been cheaper to get the heater fixed. It took me a moment to get the joke.

You have such a beautiful narrative voice. It probably comes out sultry and seductive in your novels. A true talent.


Erin Kane Spock said...

Bru -- I love autumn too. Unfortunately here in So. Cal, it's just an extension of summer. It starts getting coldish January-early April. Sigh.

Candyland -- the heat broke. I slept with blanket last night. I still had to stick a leg out, but it was so nice.

Raquel -- Lots of skirts to get under and lots of lacings to slowly undo. I agree. Of course, I'm writing it. :)

Donna -- Thank you! The sultry stuff is the most difficult for me to write well because I'm too silly and don't always take it seriously enough. I have one scene where my heroine had had too much to drink and threw up, effectively ruining the encounter and embarrassing herself. Another heroine's corset came off too fast and she got woozy from the rush of blood. These things seem to just happen in my scenes. Usually I have to put some place marker and get to them when the time is right. That said, I think they turn out seductive in the end.

Thanks to everyone for the comments!

j.leigh.bailey said...

Personally, I'm an autumn kind of girl.

But for romance, I can argue either side of the coin. In the heat you have all that oportunity for bare limbs and tendrils of sweat highlighting muscles/curves. In the cold you've got cozying up in front of a fire for a romantic cuddle, or chances to get snowbound with a hunk. In that case, I like 'em both!

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