Maybe you've read BDSM erotica or seen erotic pictures on Tumblr or who knows, but your only experiences with BDSM are the snapshots in time of what many of us call a scene or play. I know there are people who engage in BDSM without sex or outside the bonds of a relationship. I have no experience with any of that, when I discuss preparing for play, sex is definitely part of the equation.
There's a lot of preparation that goes into playing or scening in the world of dominance and submission (D/s). The preparations start long before the toys come out of hiding. Every Dominant is different, of course, but in my experience, most Dominants lay the ground work days, sometimes weeks prior to playing.
My Daddy and I talk a lot about our mutual fantasies. We discuss what we like and don't like. We're both on Tumblr - a lot. We share many of the same pictures because they speak to us. He asks me point-blank whether I might be interested in something. With the amount of communication between us, we have a good idea of what turns each other on.
When we know we'll have the opportunity to play - because he's traveling to me or I'm traveling to him - he begins the mind-fuck. He tells me his plans for the next time he sees me. He never tells me everything. In a dynamic where I want to feel pain or be a little nervous, full disclosure would take away from the element of surprise.
Prior to our time together, I often know what toys (sex toys, y'all) to have available and ready. When I'm traveling to him, I know what clothes to bring. I know where we'll go - my first experience at a BDSM club was not a surprise nor was what we did.
Think about the more "vanilla" aspects of life. We have to know where my children are going to be and for how long so we know how much time we have to play and when. I live in a townhouse with neighbors on both sides. We try to make sure we don't scare my neighbors with our noises, so we try to schedule our impact play for a quiet time of day.
Some may think that the lack of spontaneity takes away from the experience. Not at all. Because of many of the elements of D/s, true spontaneity isn't always an option. In a long-established relationship where both Dominant and submissive know one another very well and total trust has long been earned, I imagine a spontaneous scene is very possible, though.
The lack of "surprise" in the moment doesn't take anything away from it. And, as I said before, I never know all the details going in to the scene. Daddy often has to adjust based on my own reactions, too. Of course, there are times when I know something is going to happen, but I'm fuzzy on the details. I can allow that because I trust Daddy completely. I know he won't hurt me, and I know he'll honor my safeword.
I can assure you that once play time begins, the heat, the sex, and the entire experience is completely organic. The moment takes on a life of it's own. Often, we find that we didn't do all that we intended. Maybe we only used one flogger instead of two, because that's all I needed. Maybe I didn't cry while I was spanked, but I still had an emotional release. Maybe he didn't fuck my mouth, but throwing my legs over his shoulders and fucking me senseless was enough - especially since I always clean his cock with my mouth.
Just remember, those pictures you see and those scenes you read about, they don't just happen out of nowhere. At least a little preparation often goes into D/s playtime.