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 romance in roleplays, patient, kind, but… is it important ?
 
romance: love it or hate it ?
love it [ 3 ]  [20.00%]
hate it [ 0 ]  [0.00%]
depends [ 12 ]  [80.00%]
other [ 0 ]  [0.00%]
Total Votes: 15
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alyeska
 Posted on Jul 14 2015, 11:11 AM
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QUOTE (XANDER @ Jul 14 2015, 01:19 AM)
QUOTE
(please look back on the early days of the thread that xander and i had, c. 2010)

my roleplays last longer than some marriages

that's how committed i am to shoveling orange candy into my face


xander your roleplay did last longer than my marriage and i applaud you for it, you wondrous human being, you. please continue giving us all goals to work towards and just phenomenal writing in general, thank.
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bird
 Posted on Jul 14 2015, 11:56 AM
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QUOTE (XANDER @ Jul 14 2015, 02:19 AM)
QUOTE
(please look back on the early days of the thread that xander and i had, c. 2010)

my roleplays last longer than some marriages

that's how committed i am to shoveling orange candy into my face



for five years you have been asking me for orange candy while I dig through my pockets and pull out pocket lint, a gum wrapper, and a single dusty orange Halls


it does sound a lot like marriage come to think of it

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XANDER
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 01:06 PM
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QUOTE (alyeska @ Jul 14 2015, 11:11 AM)
xander your roleplay did last longer than my marriage and i applaud you for it, you wondrous human being, you. please continue giving us all goals to work towards and just phenomenal writing in general, thank.

alaska you are too kind

also this is how i am the champion of every foot in mouth relay race

ALSO DID YOU HIDE YOUR WHOLE POST
AFTER I WENT BACK TO REPLY TO IT

i am going to chain all of you to the radiator

TANGENT QUESTION: how many people enjoy writing smut? assume i mean like, actually good smut here, none of this slot A into tab B awkward nonsense.

itzume, it sounds like you have had quite a few nice roleplays that don't demand romance! and that makes me somewhat jealous. to expand on my point a little bit (yellow candies), my roleplay career has generally instructed me that if i want to get other people to write with me, orange candies are the way to go! give the people what they want. the roleplays itzume has described definitely sound interesting to me, because i agree that there are all different types of interactions and nuanced relationships that can be written! but as also illustrated by itzume's plots, you need a reason to force people to be around each other - a faustian contract, for example. and it can be even trickier to set something like that up, where the characters aren't compelled to run away from each other at the first opportunity.

tl;dr: there are good lemon candies out there but 1) where are they and 2) the prospect of sorting them out from banana candies fills me with despair

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knox
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 03:29 PM
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writing good smut/sex is not easy for me. it doesn't seem to be any easier for the people i have role played with either, but man they sure do love to do it anyway!!!

i find that smut/sex can get a little uncomfortable for me and a bit boring sometimes too. if there is nothing else going on (yet or at all) in terms of the overall story and chemistry between characters and good, dialogue driven action and such... idk. it can feel a little like no foreplay leading up to dry, chafing intercourse. i guess the whole rp would probably feel like that in that case, though. y'know. if there's nothing really going on plot/development-wise to begin with. trying to write when you have no muse can almost be like getting down when you're not in the mood.

that being said, even in some of the best role plays i have done with excellent writers i look up to and am continually inspired by... once smut/sex comes up? gagh.

  there have been rp scenarios where i was totally into it because, let's face it, i was totally turned on. and isn't that all what smut/erotica comes down to anyway? but usually i am just unmoved because ugh. *puts on complaining cap* half the time smut happens when characters are sharing an emotionally intimate moment. i want to continue to explore that depth and my rp partners (usually) just want them to whip it out and. like, what are you doing? put that away. of course, there have been exceptions. sometimes it is nice to write out a tender scene where our characters make love and sometimes it makes me uncomfortable and or/ annoyed that my rp buddy does not want to continue writing out non-sexual intimacy. *whines some more*

sometimes i feel the same way about smut with (idk if i'm getting across what i mean) the absence of intimacy btwn characters too. that shit can get embarrassing even when the quality of the writing is top notch.


a lot of my longest running/most favorite rps are/were strictly platonic anyway. (e.g. two aging ex superheroes solve a murder mystery and do not have sex in between stake outs. a little boy struggling to come to grips with "growing up" finally faces the (genderless) shape shifting monster under his bed. etc.)

then i have one on-going role play where i write for rafael, an asocial biology student who possesses a regenerative healing factor TRIGGER WARNING TRIGGER WARNING SORRY SORRY
  he continually kills himself out of his desire to remain the realm of dying. later on he makes a friend, caleb, who has struggled with self harm in the past. her arms are covered in all of these scars from past gashes and burns and rafael is fascinated by them (as he has none of his own.) their relationship started out as platonic and eventually it became more intimate. but they never have sex. they (the characters so what i'm really saying is we, the writers) get all their kinks out in purely fetishistic ways. and ALL RIGHT, yes, at times there is knife play involved as well.

intimacy -> sexual intercourse does not usually capture my interest the way intimacy -> knife play has. :') then ofc there is my beloved BDSM that typically involves little to no emotional intimacy at all.


i guess the obvious thing here is that writing good smut/sex comes down to a balance of intimacy+mental comfort or just straight up being turned on... and preference. and my preferences don't seem to match up with other rpers quite so well. when they don't match up, bad smut/sex writing happens.

(i think i trailed off the way i usually do but i'm not going to edit any of this. i wasn't going to promise well-organized musings on the topic of smut/sex anyways just an untidy heap of words. n_____________n)

QUESTIONS: is there a drastic difference between writing out dirty dirty smut and idk plain old sex/making love or whatever? preferences? is this topic getting weird for anyone yet?
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knox
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 03:31 PM
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"i am going to chain all of you to the radiator" - xander.

*starts writing smut*
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alyeska
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 03:44 PM
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QUOTE (knox @ Jul 15 2015, 03:31 PM)
"i am going to chain all of you to the radiator" - xander.

*starts writing smut*


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Poette
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 04:14 PM
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QUOTE (alyeska @ Jul 15 2015, 03:44 PM)
QUOTE (knox @ Jul 15 2015, 03:31 PM)
"i am going to chain all of you to the radiator" - xander.

*starts writing smut*


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-xander



this situation is really heating up
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Lucyfer
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 04:19 PM
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Lemon candies are hard to find, and hard to write sometimes. I have had good luck ^-^

QUOTE (XANDER @ Jul 15 2015, 01:06 PM)
[

TANGENT QUESTION: how many people enjoy writing smut? assume i mean like, actually good smut here, none of this slot A into tab B awkward nonsense.



I've never written with someone who can write good smut. On my own I've written a few things, but they usually get deleted to oblivion because hell no that is not going to show up on my computer when I die (someone please delete my internet history, there's enough other bad things like lists of poisons and torture devices...and literotica websites...-cough-).

But I've never written it with someone who was any good at it. I've read it, obviously, Abs and Xander. So, I don't know if I enjoy writing it with others. When I write it on my own, obviously I enjoy it, or I wouldn't be writing it, but I have to be in a certain mood.


QUOTE
QUESTIONS: is there a drastic difference between writing out dirty dirty smut and idk plain old sex/making love or whatever? preferences? is this topic getting weird for anyone yet?


Is there a difference? Yes.

I have two different sort of moods I write "smut" and "love making" in. I generally prefer to write the love making, but that also makes me blush and I am more prone to deleting that than I am smut. It's weird. I like the sensuality of the love making, whereas smut is...I don't know, one-night stand, I want to get mine and help you get off, too, sort of thing.

At least that's how I see it.

Topic is not yet weird. Keep trying.

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alyeska
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 04:41 PM
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QUOTE (Poette @ Jul 15 2015, 04:14 PM)
QUOTE (alyeska @ Jul 15 2015, 03:44 PM)
QUOTE (knox @ Jul 15 2015, 03:31 PM)
"i am going to chain all of you to the radiator" - xander.

*starts writing smut*


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-xander



this situation is really heating up


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alyeska
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 04:55 PM
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update:

my post is back

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Bleedpretty
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 05:25 PM
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I suppose I will finally jump in and say my piece.

I really like romance.
I like romance and smut both. A lot.

Now, this isn't to say that I want a full on smut-a-thon. I also don't want the characters making eyes two posts in unless it just happens that they somehow have killer chemistry which is rare. Also probably still won't be thrilled if this happens right from the start. When I go into any storyline I do not assume that there will be any sort of chemistry, and I do not assume that if there is it will eventually lead to an under the covers tango. I don't really like to talk out romance before hand unless I know my partner pretty well, otherwise it makes me feel confined and awkward. Insta-romance is a big no for me, I feel like it has nowhere to grow and nothing to be. Without the growth, what's the point?

I don't think that romance is necessary for me in roleplays, but I have to admit that I do enjoy it. I most certainly don't like it to be the only real plot device as I'm not into stories that are driven by romance alone, but it can be a really fab side dish in my opinion. If it's cooked correctly that is.

Before I move on, I'll answer the 'bonus' question- my personal definition of chemistry between characters. (Not limited to romance alone here.) To me, this is where the interactions are so very interesting that I'm dying for an immediate response. Read: They feed off of one another in some way, be it healthy or not.

The bonus bonus question- Sex = romance.
Not for me. As I said before, I do enjoy smutting it up as long as it's fitting, but I'd really rather have that long build up with a crap load of tension before hand. I'll add in my response to Xander's tangent question as well since it is applicable here. I said I enjoy smut, but I mean good smut. I mean the sort that is thorough, well written, and meaningful in some way. I don't necessarily mean meaningful as in mushy, I mean that there is some point to it. That it accomplishes something between the characters. (Does any of this rambling make a lick of sense?)
Anyhow, I've been lucky enough to write with some really talented smutters in my time. If I hadn't then perhaps my views would be much different than they are now.

@K- I can completely understand. I feel like a lot of people push for smut and that makes it really uncomfortable at times. This is when I typically bow out. Your comparing it to dry chafing intercourse is spot on, as well as your mentioning that the whole roleplay can feel like that without chemistry.

I personally have to admit that I haven't had many lasting platonic roleplays, though I did have a roleplay spanning over five years before the characters actually ended up together. This was a build up like no other, and I have to agree with Itzume, the build up is the most fun for me in a roleplay. I often double/triple/play however many side characters so that the one(s) that click get a chance as opposed to just being shoved together awkwardly. That is never as satisfying as letting it play out naturally.
Let me also say I don't just shove random new characters in as potential romantic partners, I think my wording sort of indicates that and it isn't the case. If no one clicks then no one clicks and that's just how it is.

Drastic difference between writing out dirty smut and plain ol' sexings?
Yes. I have to agree with Itzume entirely. It's much different when it's 'love making' in my opinion as well.

QUESTION: Smut and/or romantic pet peeves?

I will say, on my end, it has to be people writing characters who have been stated to be inexperienced in some way as knowledgeable lovers. Sure, there is instinct, but there is plenty that is learned by experience that can't just be inherently known. Two characters both sharing their very first kiss? Let them knock their teeth and get embarrassed. It's kind of cute.
I guess inconsistency all around is a pet peeve, but I think people get nervous about writing smut and believe that it has to be perfect? Which is a pet peeve that sort of plays into my previous statements. Not everyone is some sort of sexual rockstar, it's unrealistic that all characters are as well.

Anywho that's my rambling mess. I'm going to take a page from K's book and not edit any of it.

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And I watered it in fears,
Night and morning with my tears;
And I sunned it with smiles,
And with soft deceitful wiles.
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bird
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 07:11 PM
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QUOTE (XANDER @ Jul 15 2015, 02:06 PM)

TANGENT QUESTION: how many people enjoy writing smut? assume i mean like, actually good smut here, none of this slot A into tab B awkward nonsense.


i like it and want to get better at it


i am just petrified because i'm REALLY BAD AT IT and somehow, being in an embarrassing sexual situation in real life is WAY LESS BAD than being embarrassed by your bad sex writing

so much of my yellow candy preference is like WHAT IF I GIVE THEM THIS PIECE OF ORANGE CANDY AND IT'S WRONG better sit here and eat all the banana candy all by myself

all i can say is that i hope i'm better in the sack than my writing makes me out to be.

QUOTE
QUESTION: Smut and/or romantic pet peeves?
  • abusive relationships that are portrayed as ~twoo wuv~ without acknowledging that they're abusive??? i don't mind depictions of abusive relationships in fiction -- like, there's definitely a line between nonconsensual/violent/whatever stuff in fiction and actually doing it, because, hey, it's fantasy -- but like, man, it's not fucking cute that your boyfriend is checking your phone to make sure you're not calling anybody else. it ain't because of romance that he's choke-slamming you into a wall. you know?
  • 'he thrust his manhood into her trembling flower' school of erotica. the relentlessly anatomical school of erotica is also bad too. sometimes i feel like the internet is making me choose between reading about anuses or allegorical orchids and good god they are both the worst
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XANDER
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 07:12 PM
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QUOTE (alyeska @ Jul 13 2015, 12:55 AM)
I am writing this all out of order because this is a very complex and broad subject, I know- and as a side note, I am super glad we all have a place like bm to discuss subjects like this. thank you lovely mods for your hard word and everyone for your participation woo. <3

~

OKAY SO. it's BACK (>:/)
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I am going to try (and probably fail) to keep my feelings on this separate between romance and sex. I have very complicated feelings about them both in general- and this could quite honestly pose it's own thread about the separation between writing and real life, and where each writer draws that line.

For me, personally, romance and sex are not mutually inclusive.

Romance is one of those things I am just not. good. at. (In fact, the same goes for 'smut', which probably attributes to my general dislike/aversion of both.) And I don't say this to be self deprecating, either. IRL I am very much a cynic when it comes to love and romance, and it shows in my writing.
No, sorry, all your friends hate you, and everyone you love either betrays you, or dies. Maybe both. Bonus points if it's by your hand.
(By Xander's analogy- my relationships are red flavored candies; maybe you're hoping for cherry, or strawberry, but it winds up more like  cough syrup, or it's actually cinnamon flavored, and either way you're left with nothing but the taste of disappointment and regret.)

That being said, mandatory romance is one of the fastest ways to get me backing out of anything, right under mandatory smut, and I detest when these two go hand-in-hand.
  
not all sexual relationships are romantic not all romantic relationships are sexual not all sexual relationships are romantic not all romantic relationships are sexual !!!!


When you tell me that you need my character to love yours, whether now or ~down the road~, what I actually hear is: "I don't give a shit about your character."
Whether it's intentional or not, you have, with a single demand, managed to reduce my character down to "love interest." It doesn't matter what type of person they are, what their own personal feelings on love are, or what the plot is, what twists get thrown in, what character development gets sparked by any chain of events... Whatever happens, our characters are going to be interested in each other, and going to end up together.

And I'm sorry, I really am, but WHAT.

People change- and (y)our characters should too. If throughout the course of our roleplay, either of our characters remain static, I have obviously failed at presenting compelling or meaningful enough plot twists.
But even if, by the grace of some gods somewhere, I managed to come up with the most mind-blowing plot twist that is sure to knock your socks off, it still wouldn't matter.

Because, at the end of the day, nothing matters.
No matter what, the end result will still be the same.

Which poses another irritation to me in and of itself, because I am then faced with the daunting task of deciding.
Do I sacrifice genuine character development for the sake of romantic wish fulfillment ? Do I forgo oh-so-tempting plot twists so that our characters  ? Or do we write completely disgenuine, improbably love, between two completely incompatible characters ?
(Obviously not, because I assume one of us {mee} will have ditched long before that point arises, but my point remains~)

And I'm not saying all of this, trying to come across awful romance monster who will eat everything that you love and shit out cough-syrup candies of despair.
I am so not opposed to following romance and seeing where it leads. I am down to traverse any road that a roleplay may come across.
I am not down for making it the one and only road that gets traveled, Robert Frost be damned.

When romance becomes the plot, it gets too… boring for me. Especially because, in my experience, it seems to devolve into this mushy, faux-Nicholas Sparks type thing, which  downright makes my skin crawl. (Again, though, I am sure that reasonable amounts of this can be attributed to the fact that I am bad @ writing romance.)
Still, there are far more interesting things I would like to see played out inside of our imaginary world before we default to some strange arranged marriage type set up for our characters.

  A (short, non comprehensive) list of dynamics I am way more interested in exploring than mandatory romance;

  • reluctant allies fighting for a common goal
  • sworn enemies forced to work together
  • sword enemies fighting against each other
  • "evil" vs "good" when both sides have the same motive
  • friendships soured by distrust, betrayal, secrets, scandals, time in general, etc
  • "you have something i need and vice versa"
  • "i hate you but i'm stuck with you"
  • alliances of convenience or mutual need (which i guess could fall under the 1st)
  • unrequited love and bonus power imbalances
  • actual arranged marriages between completely incompatible strangers who may or may not already be in love with someone else


What I'm saying is, I think there are an overwhelming amount of "pairings" out there with a wealth of potential that go completely unexplored simply because they happen to be platonic, or at the very least not explicitly romantic or sexual. And I understand that everything I listed could go both or either way, as well, which is fine. If/when it happens. It's when it becomes necessary that I become ready to climb out of my skin and fly far, far away from whatever set up I have foolishly agreed to.

For me, the build up is important, and if it turns out that our characters ~just don't like each other~, I do not want to be left feeling as though somewhere, the roleplay "failed", or that it has to be over, simply because of a development in the way our characters feel (or the way we as writers have decided our characters will feel, I suppose).

Either way, it is irritating as hell to me, and if you even try coming @ me with that instant-anything, I will fly into the sun on frail wings of vanity and wax~

So, I guess, to answer my own questions, no, romance is neither important nor necessary. (And sex is even less so...)
And I know this whole thing makes me sound like a huge grump, but… I honestly appreciate them as, like, side elements ? But I have to agree with Poette: I think you lose out on very important points of a story when you literally force the plot to revolve around romance between characters as a necessity.

okay, now xander really needs to take away my edit/WRITE post option.

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TLDR;
I am a grumpy old lady and I will eat your mushy romance bullshit.

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y'all killing me with the black snake moan pictures

gonna have to make that some barbermonger movie night at this rate
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Bleedpretty
 Posted on Jul 15 2015, 09:39 PM
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I just want to say, that was an amazing post Alaska and I'm glad you brought it back.

As far as being concerned over being bad at writing sexual scenes, I completely understand. I think one huge plus is having a good relationship with your writing partner. If you have someone who is aware of lack of experience, or who is just an all around compatible partner for you, I think that takes a lot of pressure off. It's easier when you know the person you're writing with isn't sitting back and silently judging you.

I completely agree with both of your pet peeves Bird. I am more than willing to write a horrifyingly dysfunctional relationship if it fits, but it's never about love. I really am only okay with writing this with people I know well, I don't want to play with someone who doesn't see how twisted things are or actually thinks it's healthy or normal... somehow.

Also, if I can't tell if the characters are having sex or walking through a garden it seems really pointless to write. May as well skip.
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eurekagold
 Posted on Jul 4 2017, 03:19 AM
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How do you all feel about writing romance in your roleplays ?
I love it. It makes me so happy. n.n I am a stupidly, helpless romantic.

Is it an important and/or necessary thing that happens ?
It is pretty important. I have played some platonic RPs, but I just love the romantic RPs. If you pitch me a really spectacularly awesome idea for a platonic, I would very definitely consider it, though. If we click, I will be just fine.

Do you prefer insta-romances and talking it out beforehand, or letting it build up 'naturally' depending on the chemistry between characters ?
I prefer letting it build up, but insta-romances can work in certain situations, especially if we give the characters a good history together prior to the start of the RP. Every once in a while I will do a love-at-first-sight pairing, but that is my own experiences slipping in, because that was very nearly how I found my husband of way more years than I want to admit to because it will age me. XD


broad philosophical inquiry: how would you define 'chemistry' in a roleplay?
Anything which draws the characters together in a meaningful way and makes them want to have a relationship beyond friendship. Love chemistry (like real chemistry) can be gentle and catalysed by something, or it can be violent and have explosive results. People can have chemistry and still not be the best match, by any stretch of the imagination. Something about the pairing keeps them together.

how many people define sex as part of romance (a necessity, sometimes, not in the definition?
Coming from the point of view of a non-asexual, it happens. However, I recognise that sometimes it does not happen. As long as the couple is happy, I am happy. If sex makes them happy, then sex it is. If no sex and tons of cuddling on the sofa while they watch Disney movies make them happy, then cuddling and Disney movies it is. I do prefer my partner make it clear that their character is asexual from the start, as I would not want to pair them with a character who defines sex as primary to a normal and healthy relationship*. I am still working on getting myself to play an aromantic, which will likely be the hardest character identity I will ever write, given how ridiculously romantic I am. In the mean time, I am exploring other identities outside of my own, and just becoming a generally better and more well-rounded writer. Someday I will tackle that challenge, but I am not ready yet. All that being said, I am fine with fading to black or writing it out, if sex is a part of the relationship.

* Character views are not my own. I have some real asshole or just genuinely ignorant characters.

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