Not all science fiction is going to involve sex. Not all science fiction is going to include aliens either. But the odds of humans and aliens having sex in sci-fi romance are pretty good. The odds are even higher if you’re like me, writing erotic SF romance. But there are a couple of roadblocks.
Warning: the rest of the post may be considered graphic and offensive. Proceed at your peril.
When I think about what life might be like on other planets (and yes, I do believe in alien life) I think it’s wildly improbable that aliens would have any similarity to us. Even if the differences are not insurmountable in terms of language and atmospheric barriers… you’re gonna have to be sexually attracted to them.
If there is mutual attraction, the bits on both of you that are supposed to feel good when rubbed together need to align in some manner. All this is predicated on the assumption that the aliens will be sexually active and will derive pleasure from the activity. While sexual activity is not limited to reproduction, there’s a reason it’s called sexual reproduction and my guess is asexual reproduction would be more common in alien races… would they even have similar desires? And somehow, this all has to be built into a sexy read with a happy ending?!?
We’re a long way from the grease paint aliens in Star Trek. There are a lot of considerations when including alien sex in a book. (The movie Galaxy Quest touched on this very subject… and although it was done in a very humorous way, it’s kinda makes my point). The trick is to make the aliens… well… alien but at the same time include enough characteristics to make them appealing, at least for romantic fiction. I understand tentacles are popular. *wink*
I have an upcoming release, Spice ‘n’ Solace, where I’ve prepared the way for my aliens to boink humans, although they do not in this particular book. And I did find it a challenge, especially since the inspiration for my aliens were Ankylosaurs — oh, those paleontology courses finally paid off! In fact, that’s where the aliens’ name comes from. I don’t think I actually come out and say it in the book, but it’s their resemblance to the dinosaurs — bipedal versions — that prompts humans to call them Ankylos.
Aha – you try and figure out how spikes and armor plating are conducive to sex with humans! The real answer is I cheated, but I hope I did so in a believable manner.
Now, I read a book several years ago – granted, it was not a romance – that included sex with aliens. It demonstrated a couple of potential issues (many of which, I suspect, were the author’s). Anyway, there were a group of alien criminals who landed on Earth. If I recall, most of them were basically human looking, although they were all different species. At one point they get drunk at a party. Rapes occurred… resulting in several women’s deaths. One of the aliens had a barbed penis that essentially cut the woman up from inside. Another had highly acidic bodily fluids… I’m sure I don’t need to spell this out. This was not AT ALL sexy. It’s been years, and I’m still horrified by this scene — mostly by the viciousness, but partly by the improbability that the only real difference was fatally incompatible sexual organs. I mean, really?
Anyone care to share some titles that have a realistic relationship with an alien? Especially aliens that aren’t essentially human?