Guest post by Amy Cooper
(This article licenced only to www.fiction-writers-mentor.com and may not be reproduced.)
Erotica authors have been on the rise over the past few years since the highly successful release of Fifty Shades of Grey. Many authors have turned their head toward erotica and given it more than a glance. It’s now a real way to make good money authoring, especially since Amazon has allowed any normal person without any publishing background to create their own catalog and publish stories within minutes.
Most authors find themselves publishing erotica several times per weeks. Most of their stories are short – about 5-10k words. Each of these stories take a few hours, if that, to write then publish. Many authors find themselves either immediately successful, making thousands of dollars within their first month, or completely overshadowed by other new authors, and end up only making a few bucks.
I myself have been in the erotica authoring game for several years now. I didn’t go to school for writing, nor do I consider myself a great author… but I still make over $10,000 monthly writing erotica short stories.
It doesn’t take a genius to make a lot of money writing erotica right now. It does take a lot of time, and energy however. Most new authors find themselves excited over the thought of making $10,000 in one month by working from home writing about the sexual connection between two people, but when push comes to shove, they have no idea how to create a good looking cover, or write an effective story that not only captures their audience, but keeps them coming back for more.
In the beginning, I researched. I looked at how authors became successful, why they were currently successful, and how other authors failed. I took notes and figured out the ultimate question of why. After reading many how-to guides, I finally found my own place within the world of erotica. Within months I was making over $5,000 in a single month of sales.
Kindle Unlimited opened its gates last year which allowed for authors to make even more money. This change allowed for small time authors to skyrocket their sales on Amazon and keep Amazon the number one go-to place for erotica. Since then, my sales jumped over $10,000. I myself am still a small fish in a big sea as many other authors make $20,000, $30,000 or even $40,000 every month.
These people either work for themselves without a publisher, or they work with a publisher to handle everything for them. If an author decides they only want to write, they may send their work to a publisher to handle the cover designs and editing. The publisher does take a substantial cut (around 50%), but even so, the author only has to focus on writing. Today, anybody can make money writing erotica.
So the real question is… how easy is it to write erotica? To tell you the truth, it is easy. It’s very easy to sit down and write a story with sex involved. I’ll tell you right now, a moderately successful erotica author makes about $100 over the course of a story’s first month and it only goes down from there. You see, stories tend to die pretty quickly. An author can’t expect to keep making that $100 every month for that single story, so they have to write and publish often.
Most full time erotica authors publish several times every week if not more. Can you sit down and write 35,000 words about sex every week? If so, erotica may be for you!
So what’s holding the average person back from jumping in and writing erotica? To be completely honest – nothing. There’s no reason why you can’t simply log into Amazon right now and create your own Kindle Direct Publishing account 100% free, upload your story, put a cover on it, then start making money.
There are several pitfalls though. Amazon blocks some stories. If you write about rape – bam! Your account is locked forever. If you tell your readers the woman is chained to the wall while she is having sex, – bam! The story is locked away in the adult-only dungeon never to be found by a reader. Let’s say you avoid both of those traps and manage to get your story live without issue. Come to find out, you’ve been doing keywords wrong this entire time (Amazon has a keyword field to allow for readers to find your story), bam! Your story makes no sales.
This is where research and how-to guides comes into play. There are many erotica how-to guides on Amazon. Many of these guides offer the same information in a different format, but a few of them are great for really getting into the meat of erotica publishing. I myself created an erotica publishing guide that helps new authors get into the game and learn how to do things themselves while avoiding Amazon’s pitfalls. My second and third guide expands upon the first and delves deeper into publishing erotica! And the fourth shows you how to make money from your writer’s site.