1. Feral Inferno
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    Feral Inferno Member

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    Writing Homosexual Characters/Romance

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Feral Inferno, Jun 14, 2015.

    I honestly don't want to offend anyone or put anyone in a bad light.

    Romance isn't a big part of my series, however I do plan on writing a few novellas with a lesbian couple and a short scene (maybe more) with a gay couple.

    Two of my MCs are bisexual (one of them used to be gay until someone broke his heart), and I would hate to be offensive. Also, this is not erotica. I want this to border on the mature rating.

    I don't really have any experience with, well, people in general. Let alone anyone that's LGBT. If you could advise and/or direct me to a story that portrays homosexual people well, I would appreciate it. I don't trust Google with this.

    P.S.
    Surprised I couldn't find a thread about this...
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2015
  2. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    I mean ... at the risk of stating the obvious write it the same way you would a same-sex romance. Or a straight character. It's no big deal or difference.
     
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  3. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    www.literotica.com
     
  4. Feral Inferno
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    Feral Inferno Member

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    I thought about that izzybot. Thanks.

    And, I will be sure to check out that link. :bigwink:
     
  5. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    The site has a number of categories of stories, including non-sexual.

    I would agree with @izzybot (despite my lack of homosexual experience): I think you'd find more difference between dom and sub attitudes towards intimacy than you would between hetero- and homo- sexual attitudes towards intimacy. And that does not have to manifest through erotica - just plain old physical intimacy which does not necessarily entail sexual contact or conduct per se.
     
  6. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'd be happy to direct you toward my 20 or so novels of gay romance...

    Or, in a less mercenary vein, agree that you can probably relax a little. At the same time, I think you've got a bit of a strange idea right in your post, when you say that your character used to be gay until he got his heart broken and is now bisexual. That's not how it's generally believed to work. You might say he's always been bisexual, but used to be in a gay relationship until he got his heart broken, and is now in a straight relationship? But sexual orientation is generally considered to be fairly immutable, so a broken heart wouldn't 'turn' someone bisexual any more than being come on to in a bar would turn someone gay.

    So you'll probably want to be on the lookout for issues like that. But you could get as much from reading internet articles as from reading fiction. Although, if you happen to be in the market for 20 or so gay romance novels...
     
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  7. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Because you didn't post in the Character Development subforum. ;) I've moved your thread to the correct area for this topic.
     
  8. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I'm gay. I've been 70's gay as a youth, 80's gay as a teen, 90's gay as a young adult, millennium gay as a not so young adult, and so on and so forth. I'm 45 today. Since we're not a "race" or an ethnicity, we come from a wildly diverse background. We're rich, we're poor. We're tall, we're short. We're thin, we're hefty. We come in every single color that humans can come in and from every country where humans are able to live. We're femme and butch and all shades in between. Some of us "fit the stereotype", some of us don't. Some of us care about the things you expect gay people to care about, some of us couldn't be arsed if you paid us. Most of us you would pass on the street and never know that you had passed us. For the most part we're just people. But please don't think I'm trying to paint us with the homogenous brush of political correctness that demands that you see us no differently than anyone else. We are different. We deal with different things growing up, and those different things are different for each of us. It's not like there's just one "things gays deal with" kit that we all get handed. There's a kit, oh yes, but those kits aren't all the same.
    Just ask us. We're happy to talk to you, but be ready for no two of us to tell you the same thing, because... we're people, and that's just how people are. :supercool:

    That's me on the left and my hubby, William, on the right. :)

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. Bryan Romer
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    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

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    I would think you would be better off looking for biographies and factual articles written by gay/lesbian people rather than fiction. As a default, assume they behave just like everybody else would, except for their default choice of partner. Then research where they tend to go to meet up, the effect the laws and social customs of your chosen location have on them. Finally you get down to the individual character's personality. Some gay men are effeminate, while others are super masculine. There is no one size fits all personality. Same goes for lesbians. Last of all, you have sex. Even if you're not writing explicit sex scenes, homosexual people will approach the deed with different attitudes.
     
  10. Feral Inferno
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    Feral Inferno Member

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    @BayView
    I guess what it should say is "He is bisexual and had a male partner until he broke his heart".

    Thank you all for your replies and clarification. Wish me luck.
     
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  11. Eliza Rain
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    Eliza Rain Member

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    People are going to be offended by anything so don't worry about that too much. Now I don't know your setting, but based off what you've said so far, you've either got realistic fiction, or you've got a setting with similar social mores. Now something that sticks out to me is you say your mc is gay but because they get their heart broken they become bi? No no no sweets, that's really not how it works. That's something people may have a right to be offended by if you portray it that way. Your sexuality is not your identity but here's the thing you either are or you are not bisexual. You can find out you're bisexual but you do not become one heart broken or not. Saying someone 'becomes' bisexual is negating conflict for the character which is what you're going for in all stories. If your character is bisexual and it is for some reason easier to say he's gay then okay but its usually the other way around.

    One last thing. Just because your sexuality is any of the letters of LGBTQA community or anything in the wide spectrum of genders it does not define who you are. I have a male bisexual mc who is a private person and likes to keep his work separate from his play. Just because he's bisexual doesn't mean it effects what he does or who he is. If a coworker say asked him out he'd have no problem saying he's dating whoever. Bisexuality itself is a tricky topic... Straights and gays dont get it most of the time leaving bisexuals to feel rather alone and often misunderstood. As someone who isn't bisexual but dated someone who is for years I understand the initial confusion and stereotypes they get stuck with as it gets be a difficult for everyone. My suggestion is to really research bisexuality considering you have two mc's that are bisexual. And don't just research, I suggest trying to meet and talk to them to! They're just normal people who want voices just like the rest of us. I'm sure they would be honored and thrilled to be properly portrayed. :]
     
  12. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    As thoughtful as some of the posts here are, there is something that I didn't see mentioned.

    Being gay is the same as being straight when we're talking about human beings.
    It's a bit different when it comes to intimacy.

    Let's all remember that gays grow up with a lot of stigma, fear, discrimination and so on, and these experiences heavily affect a gays feelings and thoughts when it comes to romance.
    So, a gay character wouldn't be exactly the same as a straight person in that context.

    And let's not forget the sexual culture of the "gay world" is much more prevalent in a gay's life and doesn't encourage or show off the same sort of sexual intimacy as a heterosexual. It's different ideals and pressures.
     
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  13. MilesTro
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    MilesTro Active Member

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    The internet is full of data that you can easily find.
     
  14. Pixiebells
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    Pixiebells Member

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    E. M. Forster's Maurice is very well done. He wrote it in the early 1900s but sadly he never published it in his lifetime--it was finally published a year after his death. The first chapter or two felt dull to me, but that was on purpose and it picks up very quickly. Best of all, this was based n a real-life gay couple he knew; two friends of his chose to be together even though it was illegal in England at the time.

    I'm close to finishing my novel; it's a same-sex romance (not erotica) set in the 1600s. (Who doesn't love forbidden romance?!) I have no moral opposition to erotica in general, but I'm tired of LGBT stories/films/etc being allllllllllllllll about sex

    Search Wattpad and other story sites for tags: mxm, fxf and girlxgirl or boyxboy if you have teen characters.

    Here's the link to my novel if you want to check it out. I'm not saying I've done it the "right way" but my story, my couple, and their individual personalities are all very well developed so hopefully that will give you a starting point:

    http://www.wattpad.com/story/11544455-burnt-bliss-in-progress-%26-updated-daily

    Also, please...
    *don't make them being LGBT define them as a character
    *don't make being same-sex define their relationship.
    * have them relate to each other and common traits/interests besides their orientation
     
  15. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    Write a 'normal' romance scene between a guy and a girl, and then replace the guy with a girl or the girl with a guy. For sex scenes you just need to take into consideration the limits and opportunities the extra or lack of various 'equipment' offers.
     
  16. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    What part isn't!?!?!? :eek:
     
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  17. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    I think with gay couples there is a lot more foreplay than with a straight couple.

     
  18. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    Uhh ... no, though.

    Honestly just ... no.

    How you view or feel about romance is influenced by your parents and peers and it can be pretty fucking damaging if you're a gay or bi kid growing up in in a really homophobic part of the world, but things are getting better with regards to that. I live in the SE US, which ain't exactly known for being progressive, but my family is cool and my local friends mostly are as well, so even living in an overtly homophobic area I turned out pretty okay. The gay and bi friends I have in this area turned out fine too. I feel like you're trying to imply that a gay character has to feel ashamed of their sexuality or have feelings of fear associated with their attraction, but I'm here to tell ya I'm bereft of a single shred of shame or fear :p

    I personally was also raised by a very open and sex-positive mom, so regardless of my orientation I was never going to have any real hang-ups about sex. Someone who's straight but raised by really conservative no-sex-'til-marriage types would easily be, quite frankly, a lot more jacked up in the head than me when it comes to 'romance' or 'intimacy' despite being straight. Making blanket statements like this is dangerous. People are highly nuanced and shaped by their specific personal experiences - claiming that all gay people will have a different perspective on relationships etc than all straight people is a bit small-minded.

    Also, while there are plainly terrible parents and awful people out there, it'd really just be a nice change to see some more fiction about lgbtqia people that doesn't revolve around how bad our lives are and how damaged we are from it, yknow?

    Same-sex relationships and gay 'culture' being inherently sexual / more sexual is a pretty nasty, uncomfortable stereotype. I get it - you see a bunch of half-naked dudes on rollerblades at pride parades and you think "oh those gays, always rolling around half-naked", but mostly gay people walk around in regular shoes and wear clothes to buy their produce and shop at Ikea. Our lives do not revolve around sex more than straight peoples' do.

    Please refrain from speaking about a 'culture' and "the gay world" if you aren't actually a part of it. Btw, 'gay' is not a noun, it's an adjective, and referring to someone as "a gay" can come off pretty dehumanizing.
     
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  19. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Ha :) What I mean by that is that most of our day is spent dealing with the things that all people deal with, regardless of sexual orientation. Where the fuq did I put my keys? Being tight on funds and having to decide between gasoline or food. The fact that the neighbor's dog shat in my yard again. Where to place my 401k investments. Paper or plastic. Watch GoT on Sunday or record it. Stuff like that. ;)
     
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  20. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    I was hoping you'd go low brow and say - the part that's a donkey ;) - but I guess we're all glad you didn't. And we all wish that I hadn't. I'm sorry. I'm hanging my head in shame... while grinning mischieviously.
     
  21. A.M.P.
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    A.M.P. People Buy My Books for the Bio Photo Supporter Contributor

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    @izzybot
    The only way for gays to logically have the same attitudes towards forming romantic relationships as straights is if they've never heard of discrimination against gays.
    Every gay guy, at some point in their lives, wonders if it's okay to flirt right this second or perhaps it'll just blow up in their face in a very bad way.
    And they all learn in at a very young age.

    It doesn't matter whether you lived in an accepting home and school or whatever, that doesn't change the fact that you never know when someone utterly homophobic can hurt you
    and all gays grow up very well knowing to be cautious because of it. It's not all rainbow prides and 'Yeah, we did' speeches. There's still issues at large.

    And yes, gay sex culture is a thing. One of most easiest observable things is everyone, straight or gay, asking if you're a top or bottom. It creates a culture of dominant and submissive stereotypes.

    So, a gay character's internal thoughts in the modern world are not identical to that of a straight because of the influences of gay and straight cultures changing how they react and think about the social world.

    And I'm thoroughly surprised you don't know I'm gay :s
    I thought there was a huge announcement when I joined the forums celebrating the awesome that is I. There was confetti and everything. I sent WF a cake through the mail. Daniel never thanked me for it :(
     
  22. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    We are everywhere. We are legion. [​IMG]

    And all of this only serves to further show that we are as individual and distinct as any other "flavor" of person. We are not a homogenous thing.
     
  23. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    @A.M.P. apologies for assuming your sexuality, but you really speak like someone who think all gay people are the same and have the same experiences, which patently isn't true and isn't, imo, good writing advice or just like ... good 'existing in a world where gay people exist' advice. No one's internal thoughts are going to be identical to anyone else's. Stereotypes shouldn't be indulged and reinforced just because they're not false %100 of the time - I feel that as writers it's our job to challenge them.

    Anyway, I'll check out of the thread before I apparently say anything else monumentally stupid, the language in your op was just really bothering me.
     
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  24. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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  25. drifter265
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    drifter265 Banned

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    Write what you know. If you try to make it up and only write what you think you know, you're only going to sound weird and the gay community is going to spite you for it.
     

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