Category Archives: My Musings

New Release: Passion’s Healing Touch (The Werewolf’s Passion 9)

Passion’s Healing Touch

The Werewolf’s Passion 9

Connor and his harem of lovely and sexy women are back. A danger assaults the werewolf’s harem. Memories our changed and none of Connor’s women can remember him. Will he remind them who they love and rescue them from their new enemy? You can buy Passion’s Healing Touch for $2.99 on Amazon, Amazon UK, Amazon CA, Amazon AU, Amazon FR, and Amazon DE!

A naughty succubus uses her busty, nubile body to heal a hunky werewolf!

Dalia loves being a nurse and a sexy succubus. She rules her hospital, gathering energy from every kinky act of passion. She’s eager to have more kinky fun. But everything changes when her new patient arrives

When Connor, the hunky werewolf is wounded, he is rushed to hospital by his women. Dying from silver poisoning, only Dalia’s sensual healing magic can save him. Using every trick she cans while feeding off the passion of Savannah, Annabeth, and Alex, Dalia pleasures her werewolf to save his life!

Passion’s Healing Touch is a 7700 word werewolf, harem, alpha male, Ifrit, succubus, witch, supernatural, oral, anal, rimming, magic, lesbian, bondage, domination, submission, spanking, BDSM erotica that is not for the faint of heart!

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Barmaid Delight (Seducing Straight Women 14)

Barmaid Delight

Seducing Straight Women 14

Aurora is back, seducing the panties off of straight women! You can pick up Barmaid Delight for $2.99 on Amazon, Amazon UK, Amazon CA, Amazon AU, Amazon FR, and Amazon DE!

The naughty aurora has her eyes set on the new, sultry barmaid!

Aurora falls in love so easily and delights in seducing straight women into sapphic delights. When a new barmaid is hired at her favorite watering hole, the wicked lesbian finds herself in love. Lyssa is wicked and hot in her tight jeans.

Only problem, she’s been warned about Aurora’s seductions by Goldie, a barmaid still angry at Aurora after their romp.

But nothing will stop the sexy lesbian from enjoying Lyssa. But she’ll have to use all her whiles to seduce the straight Lyssa into an afternoon of naughty fun. But Aurora knows the harder the challenge, the harder the fun! She’ll have the sexy, straight woman eager to be taken!

Lesbian delight burns hot in the bar!

Happy Ending Massage is a 9300 word lesbian, first time, seduction, oral, anal, sex toy, fingering, rimming erotica! This tale of lesbian seduction is not for the faint at heart!

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Publishing Erotica Part 15 – Buisness Side

Publishing Erotica Part 15 – Buisness Side

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 14 – Promotion

Writing is an art. Publishing is a business.

And as a business, you need to treat it as such. Most of this article will be specific to the United States. I can’t speak for other countries and how their tax-laws and publishing royalties work. Please consult with an accountant or a tax lawyer before following any of the advice I layout in this article.

So since publishing is a business, this means you’ll be using a Schedule C Profit and Loss form when filing your taxes from now on. Your royalties from publishing are your profits, but what are your losses?

Simple: anything money you spend on writing.

Did you buy a laptop just for writing on? That’s a loss. Did you buy a book for research? That’s a loss. Did you travel to attend a convenient, conference, or lecture for your writing? Your car mileage is a loss along with any food you bought while there. If you’re writing from home, gather your electric bills, a portion of that can be written off. If you write in a home office, what’s the square footage, because that is a loss. Paper, ink, your internet bill, stock photo licenses, paying for an editor, paying for advertising, paying for a graphic artist. If it cost you money for your writing, it’s a loss.

Even if your losses exceed your profits. That is okay.

So keep a receipt for everything. Do you go to a writers meeting? Record your mileage.

If you have any questions on what you can or cannot write off, talk to an accountant. Which is my next point, get an accountant. And don’t use one of those chain services like H&R Block. You need an accountant who knows Schedule C. You do not want H&R Block messing up your return and causing letters from the IRS to arrive at your house. Most of their employees do not know Schedule C. They’re used to doing basic 1040 filing.

Your accountant will look for ways to save you money. They will asks you questions, get you to think about what you did or did not spend money on. Especially if you are making a significant royalty, this is a great deal of help.

The next thing to keep in mind for the US is your estimated tax penalty aka Quarterly Taxes. For those of you with a job, you see on every paycheck the deductions taken out of your pay for your taxes. For Federal, that’s Income Tax and Payroll Tax (Social Security, Medicare, & Medicaid). When you don’t have an employer deducting taxes from your paycheck, the IRS expects you to pay your taxes quarterly. There are penalties if you don’t, and those can be expensive since there is interest applied on them and since the first quarterly payment is do in April, it might be a year before you file. If you have another source of income (such as your day job), this can make things complicated. The rule of thumb is if you expect to have to owe less than $1000 in income tax (after subtracting what you’ve already paid from your other source) then you do not need to pay quarterly taxes.

Still, consult an accountant if you’re not sure.

The next thing you need to understand is Payroll Taxes. As a self-employed writer, you will be paying both the employer and employee contribution of Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid. So those deductions you see on your paycheck, your employer is paying an equal amount in your name. Now you’re paying both, so it increases your tax burden.

A good rule of thumb is to set aside one-third of what you make in royalties to pay your taxes. This way you can pay your Federal income tax and payroll tax. And for those who live in States, Counties, or Cities with their own income tax, you might need to set aside more to cover those additional taxes.

There is a way you can mitigate your payroll taxes in the United States by forming an LLC with an S-Corp Election. Now LLC laws vary from State to State, they are not a Federal regulation, so you need to consult with an accountant to know if your state will allow this. But an LLC with an S-Corp Election allows you to tell the IRS that while my LLC made as an example $30,000 last year, only $10,000 is my salary. So for payroll taxes, it will calculate with the $10,000 number and not $30,000, saving you money on your payroll taxes. This does mean less paid into Social Security and Medicare for your retirement, but it is an option available.

Note this does not affect your Income tax. That will still be calculated at $30,000, but your losses are already mitigating that amount.

So save all your receipts, you’ll want them on file for five years in case of an audit. Anything that is used for your writing or to improve your craft that cost you money is a write-off. Set aside one-third your royalties for taxes. Pay your quarterly taxes if you’ll owe more than a $1000 in income tax. And please, talk to an accountant who knows Schedule C tax law.

And now you are armed with the knowledge you need to publish short-form erotica. Remember, it is not a get-rich quick scheme. This is hard work and requires building your catalog to see real success. Don’t get stressed out if your early books are not selling well. It is a glutted market and it will take time for you to build up your audience. Until then, keep plugging away and most of all have fun.

Don’t let your writing become a chore. Do it because you are passionate about it, and your readers will notice.

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Publishing Erotica Part 14 – Promotion

Publishing Erotica Part 14 – Promotion

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 13 – Publication

Now that you’re work is out, it’s time to promote it. But first, let’s talk Short Links. There are plenty of services that will shorten your link and then give you tracking on how many people are clicking on it. Bitly is a major one, but there are others out there. You can use this data to see where people are responding to your promotions. You can use different short links for the same book so you can tell if Facebook or Twitter or another site, like your own blog, gets you better click results.

Another type of short links is the redirect. I use Since tinkering with your book on Amazon can lead to them adult dungeoning your book because a reviewer suddenly decides he/she doesn’t like erotica, or worse bans it outright, uploading a new version of your erotica, especially edgy erotica, should be a last resort to fix something major. But you have a series and you want to link to the next book in the current. A book that hasn’t been published yet.

That’s were a link redirect is useful. When you create your ebook, you have the link pointing to a blog post that says: “Book 2 of my naughty erotica isn’t out yet, but here’s a link to my newsletter so you can keep up-to-date on my releases.” Then, when book 2 is out, you merely go to your link redirect and change what the short link points to and suddenly that link at the back of your book now goes to the next part on Amazon.

NOTE: If you do this, make sure that you’re not having a book on Amazon link to a book on Barnes & Noble or vice versa. That will only make the site your book on very angry at you. DON’T MESS THAT UP.

Since the profit on any single erotica isn’t great (remember, with short form erotica, it’s all about building the catalog so you have more visibility and get more sales), promotion can eat into that if you decide to pay for them. And there are a lot of ways you can pay for it. There are a myriad of blogs and services that will send out newsletters to their followers, promote you across Facebook groups, advertise, and more. Some authors find great success with this and others just waste their money.

In short form erotica, paid advertising is not worth it. If you’re writing Romance novellas and novels, then paid advertising can skyrocket you if you choose the right places. But that’s not what this blog is about.

It’s about publishing short form erotica.

So how can you promote for free? There are many ways to do it. There are plenty of blogs out there that will accept reviews for free. You can send your work to them, and if you have a good quality story, you should receive a positive review posted to Amazon, Goodreads, and any other store your story is sold at. These blogs are a great way to get you more exposure.

Building a newsletter following in another. This takes time, and I don’t mean on your part, just time for people to sign-up and grow your numbers. Put in your book (I like to put it at the end in big text) have a call to action to sign up for your newsletter. There are several services that offer free newsletters (up to a certain number of users). I use Mailchimp. It is great. Has lots of templates to customize your newsletter.

Newsletters are great ways to get your stories to your fans. To get people to sign up, you can offer a free ebook or two (maybe something that Amazon banned) to attract interest. While this does get you a larger number of subscribers, many of those subscribers only signed up to get the free ebook then won’t bother clicking through the newsletter to buy new stuff. That’s fine. It’s like any promotion, you’re giving away lots of free books to find those small percentage who will be your fans. If you don’t offer free stuff, your subscriber list takes longer to build, but those subscribers are more likely to click on the links in your newsletter.

Offer sign-up forms on your blog, there are apps to embed it in Facebook, and tweet out the link to sign-up form on twitter.

Having a blog is another great free promotional tweet. Now a blog can’t just be here’s my book. You need to create articles and content that interest readers. Try to do one blog post once every week or two (I know, that can be hard to find the time, something I struggle with). Then promote your blog posts on social media. If people like what you write, they may buy your book. Also, look out for the opportunities to do guest blogs or host guest blogs to get cross-marketing going with another author.

Then there is twitter. Now twitter has downsides. You need to tweet your stuff over and over (and over) to be noticed there. Most people who will follow you on twitter will only be on for a short while and will miss the vast majority of your tweets, so you’ll want to have tweets going out all day. And that’s not possible without some form of automation. Luckily, there are plenty of apps that let you schedule tweets. Tweetdeck, run by twitter itself, allows you to schedule tweets as well as manage multiple twitter accounts on one screen. Hootsuit and Buffer are other options. Hootsuit also remembers your tweets so it’s good for rescheduling them.

To be successful on twitter, you need to learn hashtags. You don’t want to overload your tweet with too many hashtags, that turns off people. Don’t do more than three. One hashtag could be the genre of your erotica: #BDSM #Lesbian #Futanari, etc. Then there are the ReTweet Groups. These are groups that retweet other users who use one of the hashtags. There are a lot of them for all genres of writing from #IARTG (Indie Author ReTweet Group), EARTG (Erotic Authors ReTweet Group), LPRTG (Literary Porn ReTweet Group), #SSRTG (Smart Smut ReTweet Group). The last three are great for our genre.

Then you can join a support group like #IAN1 (independent Authors Network, which requires a 1-time fee to join), #ASMSG (Author Social Media Support Group), #MRBRTG (Mr. Black ReTweet Group used by the Wicked Pen Writers group). They will also retreat your stuff, but don’t use those hashtags unless your a member out of respect.

To get more retweets, it helps to retweet other authors or members of the retweet group you participate in this. You can use Roundteam to automate retweets. They’ll do 10 retweets in a variety of ways from custom made lists of authors you want to help out to specific #hashtags.

Twitter is fine, but don’t spend too much time on it. It is not as useful as reaching readers (though you still can) as Facebook.

Facebook is great, but there are problems with the platform. They are prudish. Be careful on how sexy those pics are you share. No nudity or sexual acts allowed. Those nipples (on women) and genitalia need to be covered up. It can be a fun place. You can interact with other authors and your fans, meet new people, discover new works. You can make a special group for you and your fans to interact with and encourage them to post your work, and there are plenty of other groups for posting promos in.

Then there are Facebook parties.

There is no better free advertising tool for a writer than a Facebook party. Most are release parties. Authors with a new release will hold an all day event with 1/2 or hour slots open for you to takeover their party and promote your own books, hold contests, interact with your fans and other author fans who have come to the event. You’ll meet new people, showcase your work, earn new interest. You can make wonderful friends.

So be on the watch for those parties. Slots can fill fast. And, of course, don’t be afraid to host one of your own once you understand how they work.

Now Facebook lets you create an Author page, but those don’t get the same visibility as a personal page does (it seems every time Facebook changes their viewing algorithms, Author Pages get less and less visibility). So anything you post on your Author page share to your personal page so your friends and fans can see it.

You can also advertise on Facebook, but they will kill any add promoting erotica. Amazon, likewise, will not let you advertise your erotica with them.

So remember for free promotion: seek out free review blogs, build a newsletter, create your own blog with unique content, use twitter to tweet your book using appropriate hashtags, and get on Facebook and seek out those Facebook parties.

Now before you get into all your promotion, let’s talk how you can make money promoting your own book and others—Amazon Associates. This is a service Amazon offers to pay you to advertise their products on your blog and other platforms. You sign-up with your regular Amazon account and if they approve you (you will need a blog to get approval), then you will get the ability to create unique Amazon links with a tag in it. If anyone clicks on these links (say to your book your promoting) and then buys anything on Amazon (including your book) for the next hour or so, you get a small percentage of the sale paid to you as a referral. Since you’re going to be promoting your book, linking to your back catalog, and maybe even helping other authors promote their work, you can start to make money with your own advertising.

Now it’s not a lot of money. When I started out doing this, it took me three months to hit the threshold of a payout ($30). But there is no downside to me. I would have promoted those links with or without having an Amazon Associate Account. These days, I make as much on advertising as I do from the smaller Amazon Marketplaces (not the big ones US, UK, AU, CA, DE, yes Germany buys a lot of English erotica vying for third place with AU and CA).

If you feel you need to pay for advertising, just research before you do. Talk to other authors, find out what has worked and did not work for them in the past. Don’t just trust that a random blog charging you $30 to be in their newsletter will do anything to generate you sales.

Click here for the final part: The Business Side.

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Publishing Erotica Part 13 – Publication

Publishing Erotica Part 13 – Publication

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 12 – Keywords

Today, let’s talk about the nuts and bolts of publishing. You’ve assembled all your pieces. You have your short story ready to go, it’s polished, it’s formatted, it has a sexy cover that won’t get you in trouble with Amazon, your blurb is written, and you have your keywords. Now it is time to put that all together and hit publish.

There is one last decision left to you: what to charge?

Authors have been grappling over this decision for years. There is a lot of soul searching, questioning. If I price it too much, will anyone buy it? But if I sell it for too cheap then I won’t make back the investment I put into my work? It’s a balancing act against what the consumer will pay versus what your willing to sell it for.

The indie world is not the big publishers. It’s hard to sell a full novel for too much. You can’t even put your ebook for sell on Amazon for more than $9.99, something traditional publishers don’t have a problem with. But that’s okay, because us self-published authors get a bigger chunk of the royalty pie. We don’t have a publisher taking a cut, only the site who’s selling your books. And the big one, of course, is Amazon.

Amazon has an interesting royalty payout. It differs from any other site, of course. Amazon has to do its own thing all the time. There are two different royalty plans for ebooks: one for books priced between $0.99 and $9.99 and the other for books $2.99 to $9.99. The first one is a 35% royalty. The second is a 70% royalty minus a small fee based on the size of the file. This fee amounts to a few pennies unless you have a book with lots of images. I cannot attest to how that might affect the price.

35% versus 70%. It is a huge difference in what you make. Now below $2.99 you have no choice: 35% royalty. If you’re $2.99 or more, there is no reason to select 35% unless you want to give Amazon more money. Now we are talking about short form erotica, which it typically between 4000 and 7000 words long. What should you price it at?

You might say $0.99. My book isn’t that long. Is it really worth more?

Yes, it is.

The erotica market, unlike others, will pay $2.99 for their smut. People like to get off, and they pay for quality material. $2.99 is a signal that your erotica is quality. People see prices and rate things. Why is this book $0.99. Is it not that good? This book is more expensive. It must be better quality. It’s an unconscious way our minds work.

Second, you might think people will still by the $0.99 book. I can get more sells that way because it’s more attractive price wise. Well, the way the royalty payout works you have to sell SIX books at $0.99 for every ONE book at $2.99 to make the same amount of money. Why sell your books short? If you’re in KU, you’re already taking a hit in your profits from that system.

There are times to sell a book at $0.99. Many first books of series are priced lower to entice the reader in, hoping they’ll continue on to the full price books that follow. Like KU, it can be a loss leader, a way to drive interest in your other books like having free giveaways. Another thing you’ll see at $0.99 are mega-bundles of twelve or more stories. We’ll talk about those next.

For short erotica, the market will bear $2.99, so why sell yourself short? Especially if you’re enrolled in KU. Let that system be your loss leader to drive up your sales rank and then if someone purchases it, you can make a nice royalty. You worked hard on your erotica (I know you do, all authors work hard even if readers don’t realize it).

Now once you’ve built up a catalog, it’s time to start talking bundles. Bundles are a great way to make extra money. There are customers who shop only for bundles, looking for deals, versus customers who buy individual stories looking for immediate gratification. Bundles should either be stories of a same series or a same theme. If you have a few cuckolding stories, bundle them together and sell them, get more life out of your works. Short erotica have a short shelf-life. They can burn bright for a few days, maybe a few weeks if you really hit a great kink, and then they die into coals that will simmer for the rest of their lives, giving you the occasional sale.

That’s why you need to keep writing and keep publishing to keep people looking through your back catalog.

And that’s what makes bundles so great. Your strategy as a short-form erotica author is to keep publishing, to build your catalog to the point where those simmering coals start to add up. And that gets you more and more stories which you should bundle together. I tend to do my series in divisions of threes so I can publish a bundle of 3 stories for cheaper than buying them individually. For a series of 3 $2.99 erotica, I’ll price my bundle at $4.99 and DO NOT enroll it in KU. Your singles already are in there. Keep your bundles out so you can make money, because you can’t just off pages read. If you want to bundle more than 3 stories, go for it, just adjust your pricing accordingly.

Making covers for bundles presents interesting challenges. There are a number of ways to go about it. You can do the faux-book set look, where you make a fake book box set in Photoshop or GIMP. Doing this requires advance skill with these programs. Search YouTube for tutorials, and you can make a 3D book in several different ways. Some places have templates to make it easier for you or there are way to map 2d images to 3d objects.

Another way is the split cover art method, which is what I use for the majority of my three-book bundles. This also requires more skill at Photoshop or GIMP, but not nearly as much as making a 3D book box set. You just divide your screen into thirds, and then slice up your original three cover models to fit the thirds. Another method, which is better if you have more than 3 bundles, is to shrink the original covers and take a quarter or more of the space on the bundle. This works well up to about six books.

Aphrodite Sisterhood Collection 5 angelicharemcollection5cover futanarimassagecompletecollectioncover

The simplest method is just create a normal book cover with the name of your bundle or collection. You can use a new cover image, or if you have used the same image for all the books in your series, only changing color, you can go with that method. It works. Just make sure in your title, you let people know the number of stories contained in.

Now once you have a very large catalog, it’s time to move into mega-bundles. This is where you take older titles, things you’ve had published for a year or longer and just gives you a sale or two a month, and put them into a mega-bundle. Ten or more stories, all in a large collection, sold for cheap, usually at $0.99. These bundles are sold for cheap because mega-bundles, being such great deals, can shoot up in sales ranks and bring in revenue and visibility for your catalog. And since the titles bundled in it are old, it’s not a loss to your income to sell so cheap. They’ve already had their moment in the sun, had their original bundle, and now it is time to give them one final flare of life and see if you can find a new crop of readers for your work.

And that’s how publishing short form erotica works. You build up the catalog, sell your books for a price that shows you are writing quality erotica, and then bundle them. Once you have that large catalog, start your mega-bundles. Rinse and repeat.

Click here for Part 14: Promotions!

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Publishing Erotica Part 12 – Keywords

Publishing Erotica Part 12 – Keywords

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 11 – How to Avoid the Adult Dungeon.

Today we’re talking about keywords. Now, this will focus solely on Amazon’s keyword system. You are allowed 7 keywords (separated by commas) and they cannot exceed 399 characters combined. You might think keyword is a single word, and this is where you are wrong. You need to use all those characters to increase the visibility of your product.

So what kind of keywords should you use. They come in two types. The first type is the keywords that get you into different categories on amazon. There are a lot of subcategories for each genre. While the genre you select when publishing will get you into the main category, that might not be good enough to get you into the subcategory you want. If you’re writing gay erotica, you need to have the word gay in your keywords somewhere. If you want to be in the bisexual, the lesbian, or tansgender category, the same thing applies. Getting into subcategories is important. Often it is easier to rank higher in the lists in subcategories than the main one.

And that gets you more visibility.

Now you might be wondering which words are the right ones to get you into the various subcategories. Luckily, Amazon in their KDP help pages has a list of words and what subcategory that will place you in depending on the genre you selected for your book (Erotica, Romance, Fantasy, Women’s Lit, Children, etc). So your first order of business is figuring out what categories you want your book to be in and putting those keywords in first.

Click here to see the category lists.

There is one important thing to note about category keywords. Now while the vast majority are a single word (lesbian, gay, transgender, cowboy, billionaire, werewolf, cop, doctor, etc.) there are a few that are two words. The one most applicable to Erotica/Romance author is Alpha Male. To get into that category, Alpha Male has to be its on keyword. What do I mean by its own keyword? Well here’s an example. Let’s say you’re trying to get your book in the Alpha Male, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Urban, and Transgender categories (I know, you’ve written one eclectic story). For your keywords it would be something like:

lesbian gay bisexual urban transgender, Alpha Male, hot wife swinging orgy

Notice how “Alpha Male” is surrounded by commas. That makes it a separate keyword from “lesbian gay bisexual urban transgender” and “hot wife swinging orgy.” If it is not its own keyword then the system won’t recognize it for the category, but you will still get in all the other ones you wanted. If I want Alpha Male, I put it as the first keyword and get it out of the way.

Now that leaves you with the rest of your keywords to use. Notice how I have hot wife swinging orgy. That’s a keyword string. I’m hoping that people will be searching for hot wives swinging and having orgies and my book will then pop up. This is the second type of category of keywords. These are the keywords of what you think people will type into the amazon search bar to find the type of story you’ve written.

One way to come up with these keywords is to figure out a phrase you think people will search for. Pull out anything that isn’t a noun, adjective, or verb. Don’t worry about verb tense or plural, the amazon search algorithm doesn’t care about that. It also doesn’t care about the other words. Just nouns, verbs, adjective. Use words that describe your work. Words that people will search for.

There are a number of ways to figure out what those words are. The easiest type “hot wife” in the amazon search bar and sees what it suggest for search terms. These are all things consumers have searched for a lot on Amazon. Another way, check out porn hub and find the popular words and slangs to describe the kinks of your book. There are also websites and software out there that claim to give you good keyword suggestions to help your books shine. Learn about SEO (search engine optimization) and apply those lessons to Amazon.

You have 399 characters to use. And you should use every single one of them you can. Stuff that keyword box. And remember, anything in your title will already be part of the search. Many authors list parenthetical with the titles showing the story’s kinks (the ones safe from getting you in trouble with Amazon) to let readers know what the story is about. Those are like free keywords. But don’t go overboard with too many of them.

And here is the last thing to remember. You can be as filthy in the keywords as you want. They are not visible to the customers in any way. There is no way for a backlash for Amazon to fear, so fill free to put “step-father fucking barely legal step-daughter” in your keyword if that’s what your writing. The only words you will get in trouble putting into your keywords are: Kindle, Unlimited, and using the names of famous authors or books (50 Shades of Gray). Kindle and Unlimited will automatically apply and Amazon hates it when you put them in your keywords. They also don’t want you trying to piggy back on another author’s success.

So that is the basic of keywords. They are a complicated thing. Figuring them out is one of the things that helps sell your books. It’s what gives you the visibility so your amazing cover and awesome blurb will be noticed and people will buy your book. It is as essential as staying out of the Adult Dungeon to being successful on Amazon.

Next time we’ll get into the nuts and bolts on publication from what to charge to how to do your bundles.

Click here for Part 13: Publication

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Publishing Erotica Part 11 – How to Avoid the Adult Dungeon

Publishing Erotica Part 11 – How to Avoid the Adult Dungeon

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 10 – KDP Select

Whether you choose to go wide or enroll in Amazon’s KDP Select program (see part 10), you will want to publish on Amazon. It is fastest horse in the race so to say. It has the dominating market share at this moment. The only reason not to publish on Amazon if you are writing erotica that would get you banned (incest, rape, mind control, blatant non-consensual or dubious consent stories, bestiality, and other extreme kinks).

So to be successful publishing on Amazon, you need to avoid what is dubbed the “Adult Dungeon” by the writers community. Amazon, at their discretion and according to rules they do not publish or evenly enforce, can flag your book as having ADULT content. I know what your thinking: “No shit, it’s erotica. Children shouldn’t be reading what I’m writing. There’s even an age filter when you publish through KDP that automatically is set to 18+ when you choose erotica as your category. Why should I be worried?”

Simple. The adult dungeon pulls your book out of searches unless the user goes out of their way to tell Amazon to see adult items. And that option is deliberately hidden by Amazon. Your book is still visible on your Author Page if a user browses that, but they will not find it by searching for the next “Hot Wife Cheating on her Husband with Hung Black Guy” erotica to read.

This means lost sales.

Avoiding the Adult Dungeon is coloring inside the ever changing lines of Amazon’s nebulous policies. But there are rules we have learned through trial and error. The biggest way to get filtered is your cover. I talked about this in detail in Part 8: Designing Your Covers, but I will do a quick recap: nothing clearly sexual, most of the ass must be covered (no thongs or other skimpy underwear), not a lot of side or underboob, no removing of underwear, no handbras, with couples hands must be away from naughty areas, handcuffs in use about a person’s wrist (though not in use, such as in held in hand or handing from belt is fine).

The next most likely thing to get you filtered is your title and parenthetical. With erotica, you need to avoid words like familiar relations (step or otherwise, and that can also lead you to getting banned), anything that suggests sex (including sex and its derivatives sexy), virgin, behind (implies sex from behind), rear, nursing (yep, if you like having lactating stories, you can’t use that, but nurse is fine), lactation (pregnancy is A-OK), threesome, nun (don’t ask me why, but convent is fine), hard, anal, and genitals. Mind control, hypnotism, and other dubious or non-consensual words will get your book banned.

So you want to use code words. Instead of virgin use innocent, inexperienced or first time all work. For Pseudo-Incest, avoid using step-relation in the title and instead taboo or forbidden. Amazon bans some authors for using step-relations while others get away with it. It’s a gamble and I’ll explain why later. Instead of step-dad, man of the house. Step-mom, woman of the house. Step-daughter/sister use brat. Step-son, young man of the house. Lactation and adult nursing stories, use creamy treat or creamy delight along with HuCow (which stands for human cow, a subset of the genre were women are milked but it is code for any lactation story). Use menage for threesome. For nun, use convent.

Next is your blurb. You can get away with a lot more in your blurb. For instance, nun and nursing will skate by in the blurb. Amazon does not look at it too much. But if you push it too much and are too graphic, adult filtered will hit you. You’ll still want to skirt the PI issue by using the code words above instead of step-relation. And I have used sex many times in the blurb without filtering.

Lastly, choosing erotica as your category does not adult filter your book.

That is a myth that it will. There are erotica authors that put their books in any other category but erotica from contemporary literature, women’s lit, fantasy, sci-fi, romance. If you’re book is focused on romance and just happens to have lots of hot sex, put it in romance. If it is a wife being gangbanged while her husband jerks off in the corner, it’s not romance. All this does is make Amazon mad because they get complaints from people about seeing your erotica in other categories. Then Amazon will force your books into erotica and maybe take a hard look at your catalog. There was a purge in 2015 where Amazon was putting authors entire catalogs into erotica. One author wrote children’s books by day and erotica by night and found her children’s book recategorized.

So how do you know if you’re book is locked away in the Adult Dungeon? There are several ways, the first is searching for your book on Amazon. Put in the exact title. If it doesn’t come up in the search, but you see a text link saying something like “adult products omitted from search,” click that and if you see your book, you were filtered. Now if you have your “see adult products enabled (clicking that link enables it for awhile)” you won’t know. Now there is a great website called Sales Express Report. It will pull up your book title and tell you all sorts of info from amazon, including if it is adult filtered. It will be obvious.


As you can see, there is a big red ADULT. If it’s not, there will be a ?

Keywords do not get people adult filtered. You can be quite explicit in your keywords. They are not visible in any way to the public so Amazon does not appear to care at this time. They do care if you use Kindle, Unlimited, or try to use a famous author’s name or book to piggy back on their success in your keywords. I routinely put graphic sex acts in my keywords, things that would probably have my book outright banned if it was in the title, all the time.

Now even if you think you’re playing by the rules, you may have selected a cover model that’s showing too much cleavage and your book is adult filtered. What do you do? Simple, email If you don’t know, this is KDP’s customer service. Tell them the ASIN of the title and ask why it was filtered. You will get a vague response back telling you it was your cover, title, blurb, or content. Then you’ll know what to fix, do it, re-upload, then reply to the email saying you believe you’ve complied with the results. If the person agrees, your book is unflagged. This takes a few days and results in losing that precious boost to visibility Amazon gives all new titles. If you think you know why your book was adult filtered, you could simply unpublish it and then publish it again as a completely new title, sending it through the system, and thus avoid dealing with Amazon and losing those precious first few days.

There are pros to doing this and it all goes to how the Amazon review process works. If you’ve ever wondered why some books get away with step-brother erotica or other boundary pushing titles and other authors get banned for trying to publish the same thing is simple: a real person rarely sees a new title when it is publish. Amazon uses robots to examine your title and blurb and maybe your cover. If the robot flags your book, it is sent to a human reviewer to use their judgment. If it doesn’t, your book is published. We don’t know how this robot works or how often books go before a human reviewer, but what we do know is if you make any changes to your book after it’s published it is automatically sent to a human reviewer. Authors complain a lot about making changes to their book and having it adult filtered or banned when it previously was accepted and they don’t understand why. Simple, no human saw it the first time, but when they made the change, it was sent to a human reviewer and that reviewer has no idea why your book was flagged. They don’t know if the robot thought something was off or because you fixed a single typo in your manuscript.

What’s worse about the human reviewers is it is a judgment call. Some reviewers are prudes. Sometimes you’ll email and that person will just say it was a mistake and your book is fine. It is believed the title-submission workers are higher in the food chain at Amazon. This is what is frustrating about Amazon. We don’t know what the rules are, we’re just punished for breaking them.

Lastly, if your book is ever banned, here is what you do. FIRST, do not resubmit it as a new file. Amazon will likely ban your book again and if you do it a few times in a row, they will suspend or terminate your KDP account. Usually, they suspend you and make you promise not to do it again. If they terminate you, you’ll lose any unpaid royalties and cannot publish with Amazon under that Tax ID code. If it’s your social security number, you’ll have to form a business and get a tax identification number from the IRS and open a new KDP account under your business.

SECOND, email and get specifics. Several things can happen here: 1. they could determine banning your book was a mistake (this happened to an author friend of mine, she made a change to her blurb of a very vanilla male/female erotica and was banned, but title-submission saw it was in no way banable and reversed it); 2: they can tell you it was the title, cover, blurb, or content and invite you to make changes and resubmit your file (another author I knew had to change a few lines of dialog in her book when this happened to her); or 3: your book has content that doesn’t meet their guidelines and they do not want it on their website. Amazon’s robot system will remember the content if you try to publish it again as a new title unless you change 30% of the material. If you get #3, just consider your book dead on Amazon and publish it off Amazon with blurbs “too hot for Amazon” or give it away to subscribers of your newsletter.

So now you know how to, hopefully, avoid Amazon’s Adult Dungeon. Next time, we’ll talk about keywords and why they are so important.

Click here for Part 12 – Keywords

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Publishing Erotica Part 10 – KDP Select

Publishing Erotica Part 10 – KDP Select

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 9 – Writing Blurbs

We live in exciting times. The ability to publish your own work is changing the reading world. It’s remarkable. Spectacular. And self-publishing comes with one major question: enroll in Kindle Digital Publishing (KDP) Select or not. It is one of the hardest questions about self-publishing.

Amazon Select is a choice Amazon offers when you publish for them. It is a 90 day exclusive digital publishing contract with them. During your enrollment period, you cannot sell your work in digital form (e.g. an ebook) on another publisher’s website. On the surface, it seems a poor decision. If you sell on every website (Barnes & Noble, Smashword, iTunes, etc.), a practice called going wide, you increase your chances for sells and reaching more customers. So the advantages of Amazon exclusivity must outweigh selling on those other platforms.

So what are the advantages? First, it is getting a full 70% royalty (if your book is $2.99 or more) from smaller markets (not any of the major ones like the United States, United Kingdoms, Canada, Australia, and other European stores, but Japan, Mexico, India, Brazil, and other countries). Next is promotions. If you’re exclusive, once an enrollment period you can discount your title with a sell or give it away for free to increase visibility of your catalog.

But the real reason you choose to go exclusive is the Kindle Unlimited (KU) program.

Now, KU 1.0 was amazing. If a person read 10% of your book, you got 1 slice of the KU pot. This averaged out at $1.33. But in July of last year, the program changed to a page read program. Now this averages at $.0048 per page read. For short erotica, that means you make about $0.20 to $0.25 depending on your word count and book formatting. And that’s only if the customer reads your entire book. So while you don’t make much now, a borrow still counts towards your sales ranks whether they read much of your book at all. On Amazon, the higher your sales rank, the more visibility you get. And if you can get into the top 100 of a category, that’s even more visibility.

So KU is now a loss leader program for anyone who isn’t writing long novels. But is it worth it?

I can’t honestly answer that. But Amazon’s market share is so huge, that going wide (selling in every store) may not make you the same amount of money as you’ll make from KU. And that’s not counting how the increased sales ranks from borrows may affect actual sales of your titles or others in your catalog.

Another tactic is to publish first on Amazon, take advantage of the 90 day enrollment period then go out of Select and publish your work wide. This way you can reach more customers, but only after taking advantage of promotions and KU to increase both your Author rank and your sales rank during those crucial first hours of release on Amazon.

There is another thing to consider about going wide—time. Publishing on different sites means filling out their forms. It requires different formatting of your ebook. You often need to have different file types of your product. All of this takes time, but it may be worth it.

But if you can potentially make more money being exclusive, why wouldn’t you? Simple, you are not entirely in Amazon’s hands. Right now, they are the big name in the game, but things can change. Amazon could decide to ban erotica from their store. They can make KU even worse so that it’s not even worth being in it. And if that happens, you are already in place in others stores with, hopefully, a fanbase buying your works. You’ll be ahead of the game.

So whether to go exclusive is a decision that every author needs to make for themselves. There is no easy answers here. You need to look at all the information and decide what is best for you.

Click here to read Part 11: How to Avoid the Adult Dungeon

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Publishing Erotica Part 9 – Writing Blurbs

Publishing Erotica Part 9 – Writing Blurbs

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 8 – Designing Your Cover

If covers are the most important marketing tool, then blurbs on the next most important. After your sexy cover has lured the reader in, it is your blurb they will read to find out what your story’s about. So it better be hot and passionate, brimming with all sorts of naughty possibility. You want your reader to be wowed, to get so wet or hard they have to read your story.

And that is why writing blurbs sucks!

They are terrible. So much is riding on a few paragraphs. The smallest amount of writing and yet so vastly important. You may have written the sexiest, steamiest, and dirtiest erotica in the history of mankind, but if your blurb sucks how would they know and why would they bother reading it?

Blurbs have to be punchy. Exciting. Short sentences, action verbs, enticing adjectives. No passive voice. Clear, concise thoughts explaining why your story is sexy. You have a few paragraphs to sketch out the bones of your erotica and what it is about. What are the kinks? Who are the characters? What is the situation they find themselves in? All of that needs to be in the blurb. Don’t hold back because you want the sex scene to be a surprise.

The sex is the point of the story. If your readers do not know what’s in the book, they won’t know if it will make them hot.

This is hard to do. You need to be careful. Start with a single sentence telling what the barebones of the story is. If it is a shifter story, “A hot, naughty librarian discovers primal passion in the arms of a werewolf!” or “The alpha werewolf takes the innocent librarian hard for the first time!” With your opening sentence, you establish the kink (werewolf, sexy librarian, and virgin with the second one). You know who’s fucking whom. This sentence is its own paragraph. It will be at the top of the blurb, standing out, the first thing read.

The hook to get them to read more.

Now in the next paragraph, set the stage. Who is the librarian? Give a bit about her circumstances. Why does she need to be taken hard by her werewolf? Who is the werewolf? Tease the reader with the initial events leading back to that first statement. I usually do two paragraphs, often with a single sentence between them or at the end, always punchy. You’re trying to bring your story to life and show your reader these are two (or more) characters whose sex will be blistering hot.

Sex they have to read.

Lastly, end on a call to action. Another exciting, punchy sentence. Maybe it’s a roadblock to them fucking. Maybe it’s a tease of what the fucking is. As I mentioned in Formatting Your Interior, tell them the story is so hot they should Look Inside (an Amazon feature, but most ebook vendors have a way to read a sample) and see just how passionate the story is. That is why you have a hot snippet of the action as a the sneak peak right after your copyright page.

Now my very last paragraph is a list of kinks and how many words the story is. I put everything I can think of and won’t get me in trouble with amazon. You can get away with using words in the blurb that you can’t in the title. Is there oral sex, included, anal, yep. Ass to mouth, well throw the A2M in your kink list. Fisting, pegging, sex toys, exhibitionism, voyeurism, masturbation, public sex, group sex, double penetration (DP), creampie, spanking, bondage, and more. Let your reader know just what’s in there. If it’s a kink they find hot, they’re more likely to read it. And if it is a kink they don’t, then you won’t disappoint or offend your reader leading to returns, complaints, and nasty reviews.

One last note, if you’re writing an extreme kink, let your readers know in someway. Most things, girl-on-girl, anal, oral, exhibitionism, sex toys, spanking, light bondage, etc. won’t offend the average reader. But if you sell your book as a lesbian tale and then it turns out one of the girls is transgender and still has a cock, a person into lesbians and not transgenders could have all eroticism sucked out. Plus, the person into transgender doesn’t know that’s what your story is about. Pegging, gender-swap, extreme BDSM (edge play, heavy masochism/sadism), bisexual (MM not FF), cheating/cuckolding, and monster are examples you want to let your readers know that’s what your story is about.

It’s all about marketing your book to the people who want to read that kink. If they don’t know it’s in there, how can they read it? Your twist that the heroine’s new boss is really a demon tentacle monster and she’s going to discover the joys of being wrapped up and fucked with tentacle-dicks is a shocking surprise, but the fans of tentacles won’t know about it if you don’t advertise it.

Lastly, for those who publish on Amazon, they allow limited forms of HTML coding. I would recommend only using <strong>YOUR TEXT</strong> to make bold and <em>YOUR TEXT</em> to make italicized. You can use the <h1>YOUR TEXT</h1> to make headers on your first sentence, but Amazon made a change to their display format that cut in half the amount of your blurb seen by readers without clicking the read more button. Since headers make your text bigger, don’t bother with that tag.

To make use of HTML tags, if you don’t know how, just put your text in between the tags exactly as I have them above. I always bold my first sentence, then I pick words or sentences out of the rest of the blurb to bold, like references to the kinky sex, to make them jump out to the reader. I only use <em>italics</em> for the word innocent (my code for virgin). I think italics are less effective than bolds for making text stand out.

Remember, blurbs suck but are vital. Short, punch sentences. Action verbs. No passive voice. Be as sultry in describing your erotica while skirting your publisher’s (Amazon probably) censorship rules.

Click here for Part 10: KDP Select

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Publishing Erotica Part 8 – Designing Your Cover

Publishing Erotica Part 8 – Designing Your Cover

Click here for Publishing Erotica Part 7 – Formatting the Interior

Covers are the single most important marketing tool you have. It is what people are going to see first when they’re browsing on Amazon or other retail sights. Your cover is what will first spark their interest. In erotica, that means having hot, sexy, sultry covers. Sex sells, and, after all, you’re writing sex, so use it.

But there is a caveat. Don’t make your covers too sexy or you’ll find yourself locked up in Amazon’s adult dungeon. And that will impact your sales. So you will want to avoid it. There are certain guidelines you need to follow.

  • Lingerie, panties, bras, bikinis are all perfectly okay to have on your model, but beware for showing too much cleavage, especially underboob and side boob.
  • Your model’s ass should be covered. The fact she’s wearing a thong or even a narrow bikini won’t matter. If too much butt-cheek is showing, it’ll get you filtered. If she’s not wearing a tight skirt, jeans, etc, don’t let her ass appear. Show her from the waist up.
  • Beware mesh clothing. When you’re browsing stock photos, they’re small and it’s can be hard to realize that those panties she’s wearing are sheer and when it’s blown up, you can see it all (this happened to me and Amazon pulled my book and had me redo the cover).
  • Model cannot be undressing their underwear. Unbuttoned shirts and blouses are fine, men’s bare chests A-ok, but a bra’s strap slipping off her shoulder or her fingers are just pushing down the waistline of her panties, you are looking at a filter.
  • Couples can be kissing and embracing, just make sure their hands are away from each other’s naughty places.
  • Hand bras (the woman is covering her tits with her hands) or other objects are hiding her nudity but it’s pretty clear she’s naked or topless, will also adult filter. Now, you can show a naked back so if the model’s turned away, and her ass isn’t showing, you should be fine.

Follow these guidelines and it, hopefully, won’t be your cover that gets you adult filtered. If you ever have a question about your stock photo, ask other erotica authors there opinion. Join an erotica author group on Facebook or Reddit. I’m a member of the Erotic Writers Collective. You’ll always find someone willing to answer your question in that group.

Now that you know what you’re looking for, where do you go to get stock photos. You have three options:

  1. Hirer your own models and either photograph them yourself or pay someone to do it.
  2. Scrounge image sights for Creative Commons License photos cleared for Commercial Use. Flickr is a great place for that (their search allows you to specify commercial use) and there are other websites and databases out there. Make sure you can use the photo and give it the proper attribution.
  3. Use a Stock Photo Site. I recommend since they allow their stock photos to be used for erotica (not all stock photo sites will). It’s probably best to cover the model’s eyes to make it harder to identify her. This way, people won’t know the model’s on your step-father/step-daughter breeding erotica.
  4. Hirer an artist to draw your cover. I do not recommend this one for erotica. Use real people over a drawn image.

Out of the three options, number 1 is the most expensive, with number 2 only costing you time (potentially lots of time as you struggle to find something sexy and usable on Amazon). Option 3 is what I use. Now buying a stock photo by itself is not cheap. You have to buy credits from the sites and usually if you want a decent size on the photo, you’re looking at ten dollars for the image (if not more). That will cut into your profit margin.

You can buy the lowest quality stock photo. Believe it or not scaling those photos up in GIMP and Photoshop will yield quality pictures that do not look terrible on a cover. They are not pixalated. Those softwares have algorithms to scale them properly. Then you’re only paying a few dollars. But this still isn’t the cheapest way per stock image.

Stock photo sites have subscription services that allow you to get a lot of stock photos. Depositphoto had a number of plans. You want the Daily Subscription plan. Currently [as of May 9, 2016], their cheapest plan is $99.00. That gives you 10 stock images a day for a 30 day period. That’s $0.33 an image. Now I know getting 300 stock images is a lot, but if you want to get in the game of making money at short form erotica, you will use those photos over the next two or so years. It’s an investment. For that same $99.00 if you bought your stock photos individually you could get probably 10 high quality photos or 50 low quality photos. With the subscription, you get those high quality photos and a lot of them.

If you do go this route, make sure you select your 10 photos everyday. THEY DO NOT CARRY OVER. Download every image you’ll think you’ll need for a cover. Sexy women in various outfits (cover your bases, schoolgirl, nurses, bikers, cowgirls, party dresses, etc) and hot men for gay or romance covers. If you think you’ll get into writing any shifter erotica, snag nature pics of wolves, bears, lions, and other animals. Need banners and logos for branding, see what they got. Spend time searching their site before committing to the subscription. Add pics to favorites, be organized. Going the subscription plan is an investment.

Now there is another way to get stock photos cheap. There is a sight called App Sumo. A few times a year they have a special offer to get 100 credits (1 credit gets you a high quality stock photo) from Depositphoto for $50. The great thing about credits is they don’t ever expire so you can use them as you need them and they still let you get the same quality photo as the subscription plan.

(On another note, App Sumo often has sales to get other software, including Scrinver, for cheap, so it’s worth it to be signed up for the newsletter. Further, I have no business relation with either Depositphoto or App Sumo).

I have used both the daily subscription from Depositphoto and the App Sumo deal.

Addendum: I have been informed by Jessie Ash since posting that Canva has $1 for a finished cover and there is something called I can’t vouch for these services, but you can check them out and see if they work for you.

However you choose to get your cover photos or image, you need to put it together. You can go to and higher someone for $5 to make a cover for you. It will look polished and professional. I use a graphic artist I met on who now runs her own website, Silverheart Publishing, that does all my novella covers for me. But paying someone to make your cover cuts into your profit margin.

You can make your own covers yourself. In Part 2 – What You Need, I talked about software that can make your cover. There are websites that have simple cover designers or you can use GIMP for free or get Photoshop. Either way, you want to go on Youtube and watch tutorials. You want to learn about layers, you want to learn about how to manipulate text. You want to learn about how to outline your text and make drop shadows or blurs. You’ll want to know how to manipulate an image (scaling will be your friend). Learn about layer masking and layer modes, and how to recolor images. There’s a lot to learn to make good covers.

Next you want to find fonts. The ones on your computer are rubbish. They suck. Don’t use them. Goggle for good fonts to use for cover. I would recommend this article which has over 300 different font suggestions that are free to use and for a lot of genres. Find fonts you think look good. Experiment.

Once you have fonts, you want to make a template for your stories. Your image should be made at 1400×2100 or a multiplication of that size. But 1400×2100 makes it big enough to meet the image minimum size for every place you will publish and has a nice aspect ratio. Your template is important. You want to be able to change the title, series, and slap your new cover image without changing anything else. Templates are great. They make it faster to make a cover and provide a way to brand your work. That’s important. You want people to look at the cover and know it’s one of your covers. When you’re in the template stage, show it to other authors, get feedback.

I’ve talked about branding before and it’s important. On the covers I make myself, I have my author name and logo in the same spot on all my covers. My various series have different cover templates, but they all spring off the original. Branding is important. Your author name is the first piece of your branding, make sure it’s noticeable.

Look at what other authors, successful ones, use for their colors and fonts. Don’t copy them, but just pay attention. Reds, Purples, Pinks, Black, White are all great colors for erotica fonts and their shadows our outlines. When you make your covers, make sure it’s readable when its a small image.

Here are a few of my series to see the different templates I use:

Aphrodite Sisterhood Template
Battered Lamp Series Template
Succubus Cafe Series Template
A Futa and Her Dragon Series Template
The World of Futas Template
The Werewolf’s Harem Series Template


As you can see,  only the Battered Lamp Template doesn’t have my author name in quite the same spot. It’s one of my first templates. Both it and the Aphrodite Sisterhood templates use a different ration of 1400×1867, a ratio I used when I first started out. The Aphrodite Sisterhood Stories are the only things I still use with that aspect ratio.

Click here for Part 9 – Writing Blurbs

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