Monday, May 13, 2013

Survival Tips for the Pornocalypse 2 (Erotica Readers Unite!)

Last week I wrote about Amazon's latest push to get erotica out of the sight (and presumably out of the minds) of readers. But while this Pornocalypse continues, and I've given writers tips on how to survive Amazon's jackboot on the throat of their genre, I now want to give erotica readers hope for their reading future! 
Look, I hate to burst Amazon's bubble, but erotica not only made the Kindle the success it is today, erotica is going to continue to be one of the biggest selling genres in the ebook business. It has a proven track record already, but it's not just that. Erotica and ereaders have a special relationship. Erotica + ereaders = a unique combination. Readers are discovering they can read anything they want without having people ask about the title or cover of the book. Ereaders make that age-old question, "Hey, what are you reading?" on the subway or in the doctor's office far less likely to be asked at all--and ereaders also make it easy to fib, even if the question is asked. With one click, you can switch from, "How I Became a Sexy Cum Slut" by Trinity Jane (a book that is still accessible from the all-department search, by the way, while my book, Sybian Sorority, has been excluded, proving how arbitrary Amazon is being in their filtering process) to something nice and safe for work or church like The Great Gatsby
One click and you can hide it all. 
That makes ebook erotica very appealing, even to readers who previously eschewed the genre because of the perceived stigma or possible judgment of others. Erotica no longer has to be hidden or even read in private. Women can read it on their lunch break (and they are!) and men can read it on the subway home from work (and they are!) Readers are reading more erotica now than they ever have before (the success of Fifty Shades of Grey is just the tip of the iceberg, as books filled with explicit sex are flooding the market, even if they're not being put into the "erotica" genre, or announcing their spicy content with titles like Ms. Jane's "How I Became a Sexy Cum Slut" above) and the "problem" of erotica isn't going to go away. 
The customer is always right--and Amazon's customers want erotica. They are voting with their dollars, again and again, pushing so many erotic books up in the ranks that Amazon has had to resort to this crazy, arbitrary filtering system in an attempt to keep the "naughty" titles and covers from appearing before too many eyes. Amazon might be making it harder for the casual reader to find what they're looking for, but readers who already devour books in the genre aren't going to stop looking. They're just going to find better ways to search. 
Already I've heard readers say they search books they want from Goodreads instead of Amazon, or they search Google for the author and title they want. If they don't want a specific author and title, they simply search their particular fetish, "BDSM spanking" for example, and add "Amazon"--and lo and behold, far more search results pop up in Google's search, because they include all those results that Amazon has filtered out of the "all-department" search. 
So readers, take heart. Your smut has not, I repeat, has not disappeared! Someone told me that their mother (their elderly, sixty-something mother) switched to Smashwords for her "dirty books," because all the books she liked to read "seemed to disappear from Amazon overnight!" Well, readers, the smut isn't gone. It is still there on Amazon, right where you used to find it, it's just a little harder to get to. Honestly, it's not even that much harder to find--a few clicks--if you know where to look. 
And this is where my best, favorite, number one tip to survive the Pornocalypse for readers comes into play. Fellow erotica writer Mercy Faulk has done all your search work for you! That's right, erotica readers, you can download How to Find Paid and Free Erotica, Erotic eBooks and Sex Stories for FREE, and it will tell you how to get around all of Amazon's crazy filtering process! No more frustrating searches that don't return the results you're looking for, that make you scratch your head, wonder if you're crazy, and search again and again, thinking all your smut has disappeared! Finally, you have at your fingertips a clear, easy-to-read, step-by-step way to find all those books you were looking for (and some you didn't know you were looking for, but will be glad you discovered!) 
The best defense is a good offense. Take your ereading experience into your own hands, reader! If you own a Kindle and like reading erotica, you NEED this book
And as always, don't forget to support erotica writers and JOIN BANNED EROTIC BOOKS on Facebook. We will post books there that have been banned or filtered by Amazon's censors, we will share the latest news and updates about erotica and censorship, and give you a place for readers and writers to talk about it! 
So erotica readers, grab your Kindles, download this how-to search guide, and start searching! Amazon won't be able to deny or stop the avalanche of erotica flooding its virtual shelves if readers like you keep telling them that YES, I READ EROTICA by voting with your dollars. And the more reading choices you have, the better. That's the basis of capitalism and the free market itself (something Amazon is attempting to circumvent by excluding an entire genre from the search results...) so now that you know how to get around Amazon's search engine, pass the word on to other readers, and let freedom ring!
Selena Kitt 
Erotic Fiction You Won't Forget 

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