How to compose an erotic adventure
Updated: Apr 26
Adventure dates are one of my specialties and I delight in composing them. The inventive use of space, movement, blindfolds, sensation, layers, silence, instructions, anticipation - and anything else that may stimulate my partner - keeps my creativity active and my relationships alive. My collaborative performance-making background helps but anyone can compose a unique experience for another with the right blend of negotiation and imagination.
Let's first be clear about the difference between the 'erotic' and the 'sexual'. Anything can be erotic, depending on one's presence, perception and intention. Eroticism is largely a mental state that may merge with the sensual. The joy of playing in the erotic sphere means that even the most naive thing can become erotic with the right mindset. Which also means that play in public spaces can be explored without imposing consent breaches on unsuspecting members of the public.
Sexual experiences can tend to involve more graphic body involvement and tap into broader cultural understandings around what is deemed sexual. Sexual experiences are safer explored in private, defined containers with consenting adults.
In the context of an erotic adventure, sexual elements may be included depending on the mutual desires of the collaborative conspirators.
That said, my version of an erotic adventure is:
has a defined start time and a structure that consciously uses a dynamic journey arc working towards an end point (even if that is the point where the whole experience transitions into sex/chats/dinner etc);
selectively uses a combination of space (inside or outside, public or private), sound, movement, instructions, blindfolds, restraints, sensation, whole of body, genitals, food, other people.
What distinguishes an erotic adventure from other types of play (or 'scenes', as understood in BDSM language) is that it is not focused on a sexual outcome or employing the more traditional tools of sexual play. The focus here is on an imaginative use of whatever tools are available/chosen to stimulate heightened senses, connection and a journey arc to get from one place to another, whilst remaining open to whatever may unfold en route. One person composes and facilitates the experience for another person, based on a set of agreed activities and boundaries.
Some examples that have been particularly memorable for me include; blindfold walking and wheelchair tours through the city with instructions to engage with different locations; leaving clues or writing lines of poetry on the pavement with arrows directing someone to a destination; sending text messages from a hidden vantage point; playing games with dice to drive a series of consequences, inviting cameo guests with hidden purposes... and the possibilities are endless, depending on what gets you excited and your sense of adventure.
The steps to consider when composing are:
Who are you composing for? What do they like/don't like? What are their edges (where they are happy to go to but not beyond) and hard limits (not on the list of possibilities in any way)? Are they comfortable with surprises or how much do you need to disclose to make them feel open to the adventure?
What's the tone and intention of your play? Is it a playful exploration or do you want to do something darker and/or sexier?
Date and time. How does the time of day affect your planning? Light or dark, weather, are there other people around or involved?
Location. Are you planning something in public or private or a combination? What features of the location/s can you use to your advantage? Are there any practical or safety considerations in the chosen location/s?
The invitation. How do you get your play partner to the starting point? Do you tell them where to be or send them a letter, email or text message? Are there steps or clues they need to follow?
The set up. Do you need any tools or equipment? What needs to be in place to enable an easy flow of movement or activity? Do you need to carry things with you or leave in position?
The journey. Is it an intense experience the whole time or do you plan in peaks and pauses? How do you move from one place to another - on foot/car/wheelchair/public transport? Are there any risks to consider and mitigate?
The end point. What state do you want your partner to be left in? How do they know it's finished? Is there any clean up required? Does it need to transition from the end point into something else?
Debrief and aftercare. How do you check in after the experience to discuss what worked or could've been done differently? When do you do it?
Working with lots of different elements makes things a lot more complex to manage. Hence I recommend thinking things through and planning well. That said, HOW you are is more important than WHAT you do. So again, if you've planned well, you're going to more likely be able to relax into it and be fully present to your partner and the process.
You'll also need to be responsive to things as they happen. Inevitably, there will be things that don't go according to plan. Consider how you can adapt or use these changes to your advantage. Doing all this whilst also engaging your expanded sense of awareness is part of what makes this such an enlivening experience for the person giving. You need to be aware of what's going on around you. Staying calm and reading the nuanced body signals of your partner is vital for a safe and pleasurable adventure.
The joy of this kind of play is that you don't need to defer to any pre-prescribed notion of what is erotic. Nor is there any need to adopt a particular persona (unless you want to and it serves you). Be yourselves, exploring what it means to be erotic beings in playful engagement with each other and the world around you.