Sometimes I don’t feel so hot. I don’t feel like writing hot. But there’s a book to finish. And the hero and heroine are there, in place, (picture a book as a movie set) and the producer (the author) yells “Roll ’em!”… and the scene starts to unfold.

So here I am, sitting at my desk, a flannel blanket over my shoulders, a steaming hot tea by the keyboard, stuffed with aspirin and sucking a sore throat pill.
I’m writing, “They touch, he slides his hands along her cheeks, grasps her jaw, turns her face to his. She resists, then their eyes meet. He leans over. Their lips touch…”
And I sneeze.
I picture the woman kissing the man and then sneezing.
The moment is gone.
I start over. This time I get as far as his lips trailing down her neck, and he breathes in her scent. (and all I can smell is my camphor rub)
I try to imagine something more romantic than camphor. Jasmin. The old standby. She smells of jasmin. A delicate, sweet scent. He sighs and buries his face in her neck, her hair tickles his skin.

I sneeze again.
Damn it. I take a swig of hot tea. Blow my nose. Glare at the keyboard. The hero is getting slightly annoyed. The heroine is about to fall asleep. I realize I’ve been sitting here staring at the keyboard for a long time. My tea is cold. I sigh and start over.

Hands sliding over hot skin.(I have a fever)Sweat pearling on brows. (That too is easy to imagine. But the fever is making me slightly loopy. I keep imagining the hero putting cool hands on the heroine’s burning forehead. I can only write it once though. Besides, she’s supposed to be hot, not feverish, and feverish with desire, not with the flu.
I sigh. (sneeze) and start again.

By now my eyes are watering and I’ve finished a whole box of tissues.
By now I realize I will not be able to finish my sex scene.
I must get rid my my cold in order to write hot.
Sometimes, you just have to wait.
As my husband is fond of saying, “waiting is half the pleasure.”

My hands fly over the keyboard.
The heroine pushed the hero firmly away. “Not tonight darling,” she said. “But don’t worry. The wait will definitely be worth it.”

I sneeze.