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BDSM: Some points to think about
by Kaz


Well, well, well. You want to know how to write BDSM, do you? Youíve come to the right place! Before you begin, you should ask yourself a few questions Ö

Have I ever done anything in *real life* that can be considered BDSM?
If yes, was I the giver (the Dominant) or the recipient (the submissive)?
If no, how will I get the information I need about BDSM? (more on this later in the essay)

Okay, now that youíve asked yourself some questions, we have a starting point. So letís start with your fic.

Point of view- are you writing it from the POV of the Dominant (Dom) or the submissive (sub) or both? This is an important question because it will tell you what feelings, sights, tastes, etc. your main character will have. If your main character is a Dom, then he or she is the one giving the pain/humiliation/orders/etc. He or she will have a completely different experience than if your character is a sub. Obviously, the sub is the one receiving the pain/humiliation/orders/etc. By deciding whose POV you are writing from, this will definitely help you write BDSM accurately. After all, how would the sub know what color his or her back is after a flogging? And, conversely, how will a Dom know how it feels to have oneís back flogged?

If youíve actually participated in BDSM in real life, you definitely have a leg up (so to speak) on those who havenít. Even if youíre writing from the POV of a Dom and were actually a sub, you have some idea of how it all works. However, if you have not, then you have some research to do! Go read some BDSM fics, check out some BDSM websites (check the links section) or read a BDSM book. There is more to BDSM than simply picking up a flogger and smacking somebody in the back with it. There is technique. It is possible to permanently injure someone with a flogger (and most other BDSM related implements) so be careful how your character uses it! Also, some implements are harsher than others- a whip can cut to the bone, while a crop canít. Go figure out what each toy does and how it is used properly. This will add to the believability of your fic.

The careful use of the toys is especially true if your sub is a human. Humans are much more fragile than demons. If the recipient is Andrew, for instance, Spike should not let the tails of the whip curl around his sides unless he wants Andrew to be in intense pain with some permanent damage. Conversely, if your sub is a demon, then you have a big of leeway. If Angel is using a cat oínine tails on Spike he can use it a great deal harder than he could on Willow .

Also, in a real life scene, the Dom warms up the sub slowly. He or she starts off with lighter flogging, cropping, etc. and works up to the harder and harsher toys. If you want to demonstrate a true-to-life scene, then I suggest you also have your characters do this.

As I stated before, with non-humans then you have some leeway in this as they wonít need as much warming up and can take more pain (generally).

Again, at the end of a real life scene, the Dom makes sure the sub is doing well- itís called aftercare. He or she brings the sub something to eat or drink, tends any and all wounds, etc. Keeping oneís sub in proper working order is necessary otherwise the Dom wonít be considered a good Dominant. Iíd make sure to include that, especially if the sub is a human! Humans can go into shock pretty quickly and that would definitely be a mood killer.

To make a scene believable, make sure you add the appropriate sensory images. What does the flogger sound like as it hits the subís back? If from the POV of the Dom, what happens to the skin with each flogging? Does it turn a different color? Do the subís muscles tense? What sounds are both the Dom and the sub making? What is each wearing? Is the temperature in the room too cold for the sub whoís naked or too hot for the Dom who isnít? Is the action taking place in a bedroomóare there windows, sheets, carpet? What material is the toy made out ofóleather, vinyl, metal?

Writing a BDSM scene isnít difficult, it just takes a bit of research if youíre not familiar with the kink life. If you have questions or are unclear about something, go read some kinky fanfic or a BDSM book. Check out some websites- there are lots that explain the relationship between a Dominant and a submissive (again check the links section). Then jump right in! Donít forget to get a kink-friendly beta reader who can proof your work and point out inconsistencies or something thatís not believable (Xander being able to take hours of whipping without passing out or going into shock for instance). Then post it to a kink-friendly list and let the feedback roll in!

End