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WonkoTheSane
WonkoTheSane UltraDork
3/23/22 5:28 p.m.
jgrewe said:

An old friend of mine's grandmother wrote some "romance novels" back in the 40's and early 50's and made enough money to open a Christian school here in town.  I've had other friends that send their kids there to get a wholesome education and I always have to tell them where the money came from to start the school.

That's the back story of Wikipedia as well...  Well, pr0n websites, less "romance novels," but, ya know.

WonkoTheSane
WonkoTheSane UltraDork
3/23/22 5:30 p.m.

In reply to infinitenexus :

Good on ya, mate.  How do you distribute the wares?  Amazon still?  I'm not sure where the market for that stuff is.  Last I knew it was in the woods in magazine form, but I feel like I'm out of the loop and time has moved on..

rob_lewis
rob_lewis UberDork
3/23/22 5:33 p.m.

Thanks for the insight on this!!  I love to talk and tell stories and have been devouring books over the past few years.  Started thinking about getting into writing my own some day.  Really more for my own satisfaction as opposed to making money, but then again, it seems easier to get into publishing with the self publishing options.

Any insight you can give about Kindle Unlimited?  1/2 cent per page read, for example.  Is that per person?  Do they track the page reads or just checking out the book?  I.E. if you had a 100 page book and 200 people read it, you'd make $100?  (100 pages*.0005*200 if my math is right)  Does it cost anything to publish a book on Amazon?  Are there any special publishing tools you use or just a modern word processor and convert it?  Or does Amazon convert it to Kindle format for you?

-Rob

PMRacing
PMRacing UltraDork
3/23/22 5:36 p.m.
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

Fifty shades of GRM

Grease stains 

Oil stains 

Ground in dirt 

Rubber marks on the paint 

 

 

 

 

Antihero (Forum Supporter)
Antihero (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
3/23/22 6:01 p.m.
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

Fifty shades of GRM

"He smelled of burnt transmission fluid and the subtle odor of many stalled project cars. He drove a Miata that needed 5 major repairs and a million small ones so she knew he craved danger......."

Captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
Captdownshift (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
3/23/22 6:57 p.m.
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

Fifty shades of GRM

He performed like R compounds but wore like endurance rubber. The throbbing of his manhood was only matched by the bad front wheel bearing and out of round tire. I had concerns about his ability to threshold brake. But he had me more steamy then an inline 6 with a bad radiator cap and faulty thermostat. I was about to blow like an E46 headgasket and spew my own thick milkshake like fluid everywhere. That's when he grabbed my hips from behind, held me like he really cared and let me know that he was looking for something that would last long past this intense yearning, he gently leaned close to me and whispered in my ear, inquiring about my vehicle's extended warranty, while he reached down and fiddled with my shallow 10mm socket. For years I had longed for a man who'd be able to find it. It was then that I realized that he was the one. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
3/23/22 8:16 p.m.

I know I had to do a bunch of research for my books (which were very much not independently published). I think that would be a big perk of writing erotica :)

I don't have the imagination to create fictional people or plots. Hats off to those who do. 

Wally (Forum Supporter)
Wally (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
3/23/22 8:21 p.m.
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) said:

is there a wheelchair genre?

There's money to be made there, or so I was told in our stroke group.  

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
3/23/22 8:28 p.m.
Wally (Forum Supporter) said:
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) said:

is there a wheelchair genre?

There's money to be made there, or so I was told in our stroke group.  

I see what you did there.

Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter)
Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
3/23/22 10:02 p.m.

 

This made me go look at what I've been working on. Using your word count as an example, mine are very short. Most are under 2000 with a few at 3300. My second series with different characters has longer stories, but fewer of them.

The Sci-Fi novel I have basically abandoned at the half way point is about 20,000 words currently. I started on it in 1995........

I like your idea of using the same base, swapping characters with some adjustments and relabeling it. I may have done this for a few different writing courses in college...

Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter)
Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
3/23/22 10:03 p.m.
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) said:
Wally (Forum Supporter) said:
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) said:

is there a wheelchair genre?

There's money to be made there, or so I was told in our stroke group.  

I see what you did there.

I don't want to see...

Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter)
Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
3/23/22 10:06 p.m.
PMRacing said:
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

Fifty shades of GRM

Grease stains 

Oil stains 

Ground in dirt 

Rubber marks on the paint 

 

 

 

 

Blood stains on a bandage held with duct tape

Overspray on the wall from paint tests

 

C'mon lets get this to 50!

travellering
travellering HalfDork
3/23/22 10:14 p.m.
Gearheadotaku (Forum Supporter) said:
PMRacing said:
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

Fifty shades of GRM

Grease stains 

Oil stains 

Ground in dirt 

Rubber marks on the paint 

 

 

 

 

Blood stains on a bandage held with duct tape

Overspray on the wall from paint tests

 

C'mon lets get this to 50!

Grubby fingers smeared with lapping compound

 

Knees of jeans chalked with the last of the clean kitty litter

The faded bloodstained look of Sharpie accidentally sprayed with brake cleaner...

travellering
travellering HalfDork
3/23/22 10:19 p.m.

My apologies to OP in an OT thread going more OT.  It seems like the publishing world is almost as backwards as the real one.  It should be hard competition in the smut world and a rough way to make a living, and the sky not even the limit on the profitability of sci-fi...

Stampie
Stampie MegaDork
3/23/22 10:40 p.m.

So this was asked of me by someone that wishes to remain anonymous.  How do you write and not get sexually turned on?  Is it like a you're just doing your job and it doesn't matter or is that a distraction?

Patrick
Patrick MegaDork
3/24/22 8:35 a.m.

In reply to Stampie :

I can't speak to the OP, but some of the things I do that others consider sexually arousing are more about the relaxation of artistic expression for me.  Feel free to text me if you're curious, but probably NSFF(not safe for forum)

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 8:37 a.m.
Gary said:

In reply to infinitenexus :

Are any of your female characters named "Amy"? (If you're curious about my asking that question, it's because there was an almost porn-type thread here a few years ago that involved an "Amy." We all breathlessly awaited the next post from the OP. Alas, it eventually disappeared from the forum. sad)

Captdownshift even changed his avatar in honor of Amy.

No, none of my characters are named Amy. I honestly don't think I even know anyone named Amy.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 8:38 a.m.
DjGreggieP said:

Non erotica related.

Followed on Twitter, and put your book on my amazon wishlist. I am waiting until I am back in the house before ordering any books so I don't have to box them up and risk losing anything.

 

Thank you

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 8:40 a.m.
Javelin said:
infinitenexus said:

So, before anyone asks I'll just tell you, no I am not going to divulge my pen names for erotica. Don't even bother asking. 

It's Infinite Nexus, isn't it?

So true story, a kid named Ryan Libbert back in uhhhhhh 11th grade I think had the words "infinite nexus" written on his backpack with this cool design involving arrows pointing in every direction. That was about 1998-1999, and I thought it was the coolest thing so I snagged it for my internet handle (my actual name is Armon). It's become my default since then, although I have run into a few situations where someone else has that username.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 8:46 a.m.
rob_lewis said:

Thanks for the insight on this!!  I love to talk and tell stories and have been devouring books over the past few years.  Started thinking about getting into writing my own some day.  Really more for my own satisfaction as opposed to making money, but then again, it seems easier to get into publishing with the self publishing options.

Any insight you can give about Kindle Unlimited?  1/2 cent per page read, for example.  Is that per person?  Do they track the page reads or just checking out the book?  I.E. if you had a 100 page book and 200 people read it, you'd make $100?  (100 pages*.0005*200 if my math is right)  Does it cost anything to publish a book on Amazon?  Are there any special publishing tools you use or just a modern word processor and convert it?  Or does Amazon convert it to Kindle format for you?

-Rob

Kindle U is currently about half a cent per page read, per person. That only counts for the first read through, so if you read my book 40 times I only get paid for the first read. However, if 40 different people read it then I get paid 40 times. No special tools, I usually type them in google docs, then when I'm done copy paste it into Microsoft word and tweak a few things, save it, then transfer that to Kindle Create, a free program that puts it in the format to be published as an ebook. I also use Microsoft Word to configure it for paperback, which is a bit more extensive but not overly difficult. For covers, I use depositphotos.com, which I have a subscription to and pay about $1/photo, and use GIMP to create and edit my covers. So basically free (I got a free copy of Word from work, Libreoffice would work as well). 

The publishing process is very easy, you create a free account on amazon at kdp.amazon.com, upload your book and artwork, fill in some keywords and info, set the price, and it gets published after a brief review period (usually about a day).

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 8:51 a.m.
Stampie said:

So this was asked of me by someone that wishes to remain anonymous.  How do you write and not get sexually turned on?  Is it like a you're just doing your job and it doesn't matter or is that a distraction?

This is an excellent question. Sometimes it's hard (hehe) to not be affected by what I'm writing, even when it's something I'm definitely not into. I tend to have a fairly descriptive style of prose, for which I can thank Robert Jordan. When I'm writing about penetrating a perfect body (because in erotica the people always have perfect bodies) and all the nitty gritty details, yeah it gets the blood flowing sometimes. I think that's just a natural part of being a human being; being exposed to sexual content will have that affect on you.

There is a caveat here; I've tried my hand at a few other niches to see if I could do it, and some I found utterly droll. I'll mention some of that in my next post.

I'm trying to reply to everyone, sorry if I miss someone's question. 

Ian F (Forum Supporter)
Ian F (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
3/24/22 8:51 a.m.

A friend from the MINI world has been publishing books for awhile now and has a few out there.   Pretty sure she would agree about how difficult it is to make any money at it these days.  Every few months, she'll post some long rant about wanting to quit after some poor interaction with a publisher or something - then a week later she'll mention some new story she's working on.  Seems like it becomes an obsession and she can't stop.

Another writer I know who publishes a weekly newsletter has mentioned a few times in podcasts, "learn to write fast first, then learning to write well will come."

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 9:11 a.m.

Okay, so specificities within a certain niche can be interesting, in terms of sales. On my "straight" pen name, I was writing a story and got an idea from other big-selling author and changed the woman's age, making her freshly 18 years old. Then, I decided to make her latin, because Puerto Rican women are awesome. So based on that and my keywords, it automatically got placed into the interracial erotica category on amazon, and it did pretty well. So I decided to go with that, and wrote a short series, then some black woman/white man interracial erotica with the same theme, the freshly 18 woman and the older man. One of those made it to number 7 in the category, so from that sometimes I jokingly call myself a best-selling author. Most of the stories are from the man's point of view and are written for a male readership. I did try writing a story once from the female point of view, and it sold pretty well, although it was still written for a male audience. I tried one from the female point of view and written more for a female audience (different words, focusing on different things) and it didn't sell well at all. Well, my cover is one that would attract men, not women, so that makes sense.

Now on my transgender pen name it gets pretty interesting. I wrote a number of stories that were all male on transgender woman, and they did pretty well. I decided to branch out a little bit like other authors that write in the same niche, and tried a crossdressing story (male on crossdresser) and that did really well. Later, I tried what's called "forced feminization," which is pretty much what you think it is, guy gets caught crossdressing by someone, that person says something like "okay then wear these women's clothes or I'll tell everyone!" and they end up doing it, and of course it's the best thing they've ever experienced so they agree to keep doing it in the future. That sold very well. I then received my first fan email and a guy asked for something very specific; very well-endowed transgender women topping. So I wrote a couple stories about that, and they've done well. I'm trying to finish a few more so I can release them as a sort of box set, which tends to sell better.  I also experimented a bit with writing a fantasy novella that had lots of hardcore gruntin' in it, and that has been probably my best seller overall--it's 3 times as long as my average story, so when I'm getting paid for page reads that really helps. Also, it's a good story. It's very loosely based on a fantasy story that I plan on writing in the future after I'm done writing scifi on my primary pen name. I was able to use this short book to kind of test the waters on a few parts, to gain some experience writing fantasy. It was fun. The downside was that it took more time to write. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
3/24/22 9:15 a.m.
Ian F (Forum Supporter) said:

A friend from the MINI world has been publishing books for awhile now and has a few out there.   Pretty sure she would agree about how difficult it is to make any money at it these days.  Every few months, she'll post some long rant about wanting to quit after some poor interaction with a publisher or something - then a week later she'll mention some new story she's working on.  Seems like it becomes an obsession and she can't stop.

Another writer I know who publishes a weekly newsletter has mentioned a few times in podcasts, "learn to write fast first, then learning to write well will come."

That last line is spot-on. A lot of people, when writing books and especially their first, get hung up on writing the best book they can.

Craig Martelle, a best-selling science fiction author and a guy that's churned out dozens and dozens of books, likes to teach writing "good enough" books, especially when someone is trying to do this to make money. Your book doesn't have to be perfect. A perfect book isn't going to drive sales. What will cause people to buy your book is having an excellent cover and a well-written blurb. Those are pretty much the most important things. After that, your book needs to be an appropriate length for its genre, and then it just needs to be "good enough." It doesn't have to be perfect. It should be good, for sure, but instead of spending days and days trying to eek that extra 1% out of your book, put that energy into writing the next one.

 

Also, most authors will tell you that your first book sucks. There's no way around it; just go ahead and write it and get it over with. I wrote my first book back in November of 2020, and while there were some good things about it, it sucked. A couple years from now I plan on completely rewriting it from scratch, when I'm a better author, as it's a story that deserves a good telling. Also, my first full-length novel Like Shadows in the Night is 48,800 words, so a short novel. The sequel is gearing up to be 80-90K words. 

ddavidv
ddavidv UltimaDork
3/24/22 9:16 a.m.

A subject dear to my heart.

First, writing the erotic stuff isn't as easy or fun as you may think. I found writing the sex scenes in my two novels one of the more difficult things to do. It is a battle between being arousing and not sounding like a 14 year old's submission to Penthouse Letters.  I have 'implied sex' in my unrelated third novel and it probably works almost as well. But, the graphic sex in the first two was fairly necessary to the character. 

I'm not much of a short story writer. Writing the first novel was hard, but once I got into a flow it became fairly easy to do the next two. I am very, very proud of my end products but that is all I really can show for it. The cover art for the first one I bought. Sales have just about covered the cost of that. I made my own on the next two. The single biggest problem a fiction writer will have is getting people to read your stuff if they don't know you. The competition is of a magnitude you really can't grasp. Everyone and their brother are self-publishing on Amazon.  A lot of it is poor quality trash, which hurts the rest of us. You can't charge more than a couple bucks or readers won't take a chance on you. So it takes forever to make any money. And unless you gain some sort of following, your books will fall into obscurity after a year on the market.

It helps if you can regularly release new material to make a 'catalog', but I don't have that many stories in me (right now) and the amount of work it took to write and edit the first three vs the return financially has soured me.  It's not even about the money for me; I just want people to read my stuff.  Paying to 'promote' my work without any assurance I'll actually gain readers seems like just another way for Amazon or whoever to make money instead of me. So I'm a bit jaded.

But...

After reading a particularly bad book about restoring a car I threw together one about my experience rebuilding a motorcycle.  Unless you're the technical type it probably doesn't make for compelling reading. I can now see other ways I could have made it an even better book. But, the thing sells reasonably well by my standards. I make a few hundred on it every year at a very low purchase price. Doesn't sound like much, but the motorcycle brand is very small. I'm surprised it sells what it does.

My take-away:  fiction is a difficult market, unless you are selling erotica (I knew this before this thread).  Non-fiction, if the subject matter has any sort of appeal or following, can be lucrative.

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