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Archived Author Help > Is my story Dark Fiction or Erotica?

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message 1: by Angel (new)

Angel | 216 comments Stick with YA Dark Fiction


message 2: by Joe (new)

Joe Jackson (shoelessauthor) If the sex is not descriptive, i.e. it happens "off-screen" or through fade-to-blacks, then it's not erotica. How prolific it is may affect whether the story is suitable to YA audiences, but others would have a better idea of that.

Good luck!


message 3: by Owen (new)

Owen O'Neill (owen_r_oneill) | 1509 comments These days "erotica" is rather specific category on Amazon (and I think in general). Many books, especially romance novels, now include explicit sex comprising a substantial portion of the book, and are not classified as "erotica" or even "erotic romance" (in the case of romance). 50 Shades is not listed as "erotica" on Amazon, or even "erotic romance". The listed categories are simply "romance".

Although that definition of "erotica" might be considered accurate, it doesn't really describe what is listed as erotica these days, which might be better described work that consists of explicit detailed sex and little (or nothing) else.

From what you say about your work, it does not bear any resemblance to "erotica."


message 4: by Quoleena (new)

Quoleena Sbrocca (qjsbrocca) I think you have it right. Based on your description, it does not fall into the erotica category.

However also based on your description, do you think it fits into the YA category? Kids as young as 12 or 13 can and do read YA fiction. Your book has mature content for 18+. Just a heads up to ensure your book finds its proper audience and not upset parents leaving reviews.


message 5: by Zoltán (new)

Zoltán (witchhunter) | 267 comments What is considered erotica is very flexible. Places, groups, religions, ages, etc. The part that you need to find out is what is considered erotica on an individual publishing channel. In most western environments, categorization to erotica is based on the amount or lack of explicit descriptions, the quantity in the book and also about the goal. Is it just one tool, just as you mention what they say, eat, etc or is it the point?

From what you described, on Amazon, it will probably not fall into erotica. (I didn't have the impression by your description that it is explicit.)

Other things you should consider, regardless of the online categorization:
- Who do you want as your reader?
- Who do you want to avoid as reader?
- It is always a safe bet to mention if you have erotic references. An unexpected surprise can bring out the worst from people, while those who are not offended by it, will take it as an additional info.


message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

Given your description of the book, I agree with sticking to the "Dark Fiction" category because changing it to erotica would be a bit misleading. You really don't want people expecting erotica and not getting it, but you don't want to be passed over by people who won't read erotica.

I agree with Quoleena. You might want to re-think categorizing it as YA. Whenever I review a YA book, I keep that audience in mind; if I wouldn't want my pre-teen niece or sheltered 16-year-old sister-in-law to read it, then that will be reflected in the review and how I rate it.


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