Here's the thing. In romance, reactions have to be exaggerated, and that's where I sometimes go off track because I'm so engrossed in writing the "story." Each time the romantic hero and heroine are in the same room together, there should be some reaction from him or her, depending on whose point of view it's in. A look should leave her breathless. A touch should make her skin tingle with awareness. And that's the key word right there. Awareness. The awareness between the hero and heroine should always be present and their reactions exaggerated.
To achieve this exaggerated awareness, we have to incorporate all five senses: touch, sight, smell, taste, and hearing. And from that is where sensuality derives its meaning.
So, sometimes I'm writing away and suddenly remember I've forgotten to give each look, touch, or smell it's due. That's when I go back and start layering in those little exaggerated nuggets that you find only in romance. But all the time I'm wondering, how much is too much? I've read books that made me roll my eyes at the lengths some authors go to to give their characters these exaggerated reactions. It often crosses the line into the absurd, and I certainly don't want to go there with my own writing. And yet, this seems to be what publishers and readers want.
I realize I'm getting way out into the weeds with this, but I can't seem to get my thoughts in order today. What about you? Do you enjoy reading all those exaggerated reactions--all the breathless, heart-pounding touches and brushes--between the hero and heroine? Yes, much of this is necessary to achieve the romance, but do you think it's sometimes carried way overboard. I find the worst culprits to be historical romance, which is what I write. So, stuck to the front of my computer tower, I keep a post-it that says : "Remember the romance, Remember the sensuality." Is it just me?