slug Quotes

Conflict and character are the heart of good fiction, and good mystery has both of those in spades.

- Diana Gabaldon

But it wouldn’t have half the power of a story in which Jamie and Claire truly conquer real evil and thus show what real love is. Real love has real costs—and they’re worth it. I’ve always said all my books have a shape, and Outlander’s internal geometry consists of three slightly overlapping triangles. The apex of each triangle is one of the three emotional climaxes of the book: 1) when Claire makes her wrenching choice at the stones and stays with Jamie, 2) when she saves Jamie from Wentworth, and 3) when she saves his soul at the abbey. It would still be a good story if I’d had only 1 and 2—but (see above), the Rule of Three. A story that goes one, two, three, has a lot more impact than just a one–two punch.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

Don’t let characters talk pointlessly—they only talk if there’s something to say.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

You want to anchor the scene with physical details, but by and large it’s better to use sensual details rather than overtly sexual ones.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

#Outlander QOTD Claire and Master Raymond.Snapped abruptly to a realization of how rudely I had been staring, I blushed and said without thinking, "I was just wondering if you've ever been kissed by a beautiful young girl?" I went still redder as he shouted with laughter. With a broad grin, he said "Many times, madonna. But alas, it does not help. As you see. Ribbit.

- Diana Gabaldon, Dragonfly in Amber

Almost everybody understands that you have to have something at stake for a story to be good.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

Jamie’s viewpoint is expressed almost entirely in metaphor: If she was broken, she would slash him with her jagged edges, reckless as a drunkard with a shattered bottle. He’s using physical language, but he isn’t talking about the physical details of the situation. Claire alludes to her emotion and shows it by her actions, but Jamie is thinking directly in pure emotions.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

Snapped abruptly to a realization of how rudely I had been staring, I blushed and said without thinking, "I was just wondering if you've ever been kissed by a beautiful young girl?" I went still redder as he shouted with laughter. With a broad grin, he said "Many times, madonna. But alas, it does not help. As you see. Ribbit.

- Diana Gabaldon, Dragonfly in Amber

Just as an effective advertisement or page layout includes a lot of white space, a powerful scene requires immense restraint. Show things as simply as possible.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

As a rule of thumb, four consecutive lines of dialogue is about as much as you want to have without a tag.

- Diana Gabaldon, "I Give You My Body . . .": How I Write Sex Scenes

You focus on telling stories,
we do everything else.