Life As A Male Erotica Writer, Magic Means, Magic Means Series, self-publishing

Too Taboo For Amazon

If I used this image as a cover on Amazon, it would likely get a book red flagged as adult content and hidden from search results.

This isn’t an attack on Amazon. I understand that they want to run their marketplace a certain way and it’s up to the people who want to offer things there to adjust to their rules. It’s obviously working for them right now. No one is more successful in retail, but there will always be people who belong on the fringe, and it turns out that I’m one of them.

In my opinion, Amazon is the most restrictive place to publish ebooks with erotic content and I don’t feel like what I’m going to be releasing this year fits there well. The next Magic Means novels could get my account banned on Amazon, which is something I can’t afford, so I’m going to be publishing on the other safe havens that will be happy to accept my work.

That includes Smashwords (the best platform for erotic content), Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, Kobo and other platforms that will welcome most if not all the content I’m going to be releasing this year.

Sadly, thousands of people who downloaded the Magic Means series freebie (books 1-3 are free) won’t be able to find the next books on Amazon. While a simple search would remedy that, most readers won’t want to download anything outside of Amazon or they won’t care to learn how to, so I’ll lose them. Too bad. Magic Means is about to become even more awesome, they’ll miss it.

Books 6 and 7 are going to be released this summer, and they won’t be on Amazon because there is some religious, dubcon, gender bending and other taboo content within. The short stories and novellas I’ll be releasing won’t fit into Amazon’s plan either. I’d rather lean into the taboo than tone my work down, so freedom is important.

I tried writing Magic Means so it fit the restrictions Amazon puts on fiction, but that series invites creativity, controversy and runs head long into how free most of the characters are with their sexuality. As I explored the story and encounters in books six, seven and eight I found myself changing them to fit into the box Amazon built, to avoid the things that get books and accounts banned.

After the first draft of books six and seven, which were supposed to be out by now, I was severely disappointed. I bent over backwards to make those books tame enough for Amazon, but that sucked so much of the playful spirit and conflict out of the novels that I actually lost interest in working on the series at all.

I took a break from Magic Means for a few months then went back to edit books six and seven again. I decided to rewrite sections and edit the rest the way I wanted to, ignoring the restrictions I was avoiding so the books could be published on Amazon. Behold! Magic Means Books Six and Seven came back to life, with titillating fun and inter-character fascinations that I thought were much more enjoyable. It wasn’t that the new versions of these books were dirtier nessisarily, but you could tell they weren’t written while I was walking on eggshells. You could tell I wasn’t worrying about pissing some big corporation off anymore.

Sadly, similar books got some people banned from the Kindle Program completely. I respect Amazon and believe that what they’re doing is right for them, even if it doesn’t suit me, so instead of re-editing the books to suit their site, I’m not going to publish with them anymore. I’d rather stick to smaller platforms that want me than get ushered out of an establishment that doesn’t.

I’m going to miss out on a lot of money. We’re talking hundreds, probably thousands of dollars. Amazon is the biggest ebook marketplace in the world. After thinking about it for months, fixing two novels so they are better books instead of taming them so they fit in with what Amazon wants, I’ve decided I have to be okay with that. I write this stuff for titillation and fun. Not just yours, but mine too, and I’d like to be free to go wherever my muses take me. Unfortunately, they’re leading my more erotic work away from Amazon. That’s okay.

Please follow me to Smashwords, where perfectly formatted versions of my ebooks will be available for all your devices. If you’re already downloading my stuff on another platform, like Apple Books, Kobo or Barnes & Noble, that’s great too. I’m going to be releasing a lot over the summer, and I look forward to it.

Now the shackles come off (or go back on?). It’s time to have some real fun.

Life As A Male Erotica Writer, Magic Means, self-publishing

I’m On Facebook!

facebook thumbing youI know, so many people talk about leaving Facebook, so why am I running back into it’s waiting arms and feely hands as they pick my pockets (and my very soul!) for data and check the colour of my underpants like a creepy uncle?

It’s the biggest platform out there. Even if you fail to reach people on Facebook, you can at least say you had a toe-hold there, which is actually still worth something. So, if you want to get felt up by Facebook’s information seeking system with me, friend me, and check in to the Magic Means page. I’d like to see who is part of the community I’m building around these books.

I’ll be around these places:

My personal Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/damon.rain.9659

The Magic Means Facebook Group (join in if you enjoy any of my books, not just Magic Means): https://www.facebook.com/groups/magicmeans

Writing to you from behind a blackout curtain, trying to avoid Facebook’s leering gaze,

Damon Rain

Life As A Male Erotica Writer, self-publishing

Working In Your Underpants

I write and edit for upwards of forty hours a week. It’s my full time job, and I work at home. That means that when there aren’t people around, I leave my pants behind! In North America there are more and more people working at home. There’s a growing chance that the North American support agent you talk to is answering your call at home and they’re not wearing pants. The same can be said for the people who program your software, recorded the song you’re listening to, or made just about anything where they can find privacy or friends who also enjoy going without pants. It’s a breezy, free, brave new world.

I’m not going to go into the reasons why you should toss your jeans, leggings or other bum coverings, I’m not here to convince you to join this uncovered closed door cult, I’d rather share some of the wisdom I’ve gained from a few years of pant freedom. Oh, why do I do it? I feel free! Skin was made to breathe, as a wonderful ex who would take her clothes off whenever the drapes closed would say, and my pale legs get plenty of air.

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Now, for some lessons I’ve learned the hard way from airy, trouser-less times.

 

 

  • Leather is the enemy when it gets warm. It might be easy to clean, but there’s nothing like finishing a long sit down then having to peeeeeel your bare legs (possibly your butt if you’re thong clad or totally bare down there, you cheeky monkey), off the office furniture. Some leather can get discoloured if it comes into contact with sweat, too, and the shapes you can leave behind can tell an interesting story. Imagine an impression that looks like two cantaloups above two golf balls balanced atop two watermelons.
  • Keep a pair of jogging pants or a robe nearby! Anything that takes a long time to get into isn’t a great idea for your emergency modesty clothing. A fellow writer I’ve known for years works almost trouser free. She has a cheeky seat, pushing her pants down to her feet to keep them warm while her legs are bare and free.
  • “Pic or it didn’t happen!” A few people have said this to me, but I won’t give in because I’ve seen a few authors who have, and it often becomes something they’re known for. If you like that, hey, fill your Instagram with pant-less pics, but don’t violate their policies (no muffins or pickles!), and remember that those images could bite you in the, well, you know, later.
  • Keep a lock on the door if there are other people in the house, even if there aren’t! It’s amazing how quiet someone can be, or how you might fail to hear someone come home while you’re singing along to Eye Of The Tiger, getting ready to write your next kick-ass chapter. True story.
  • Be aware! I have answered the door in a T-shirt and boxers, realizing only as it was open wide that I forgot my pants. Perhaps that was a flash-forward twenty or thirty years into old age, or just something that had to happen so I’d learn my lesson, but my relationship with the Purolator guy definitely changed for a while.
  • Feeling comfy and confident? Other people might not feel the same way. I like being candid and forthcoming with my friends, but that doesn’t mean they want to see my frank or beans. Boxers slip, thongs go wrong and not everyone want to see you without pants. If your clan is a culture of barely clad comrades, then congratulations! Be free (of your clothes) and don’t worry who walks in or sees you slipping off to the kitchen for a banana.
  • Secure your webcam. It’s the classic news caster joke: he’s all suit and tie guy or blouse and jacket jill from the waist up, but it’s knickers and knee-socks below. Well, I was doing my best impersonation of that act one day for an interview and the webcam fell down behind the monitor, below the desk, and the hairy truth was revealed to the amateur journalist. We had a few laughs and moved on, but, hey, if you don’t want to share your underwear, make sure your camera’s pointed the right way so it can’t fall down there.

I hope you enjoyed this frivolous journey into being an unfettered home worker. Leave  comment below if you want to see more of this stuff or if you have your own story to add.

From my breezy office,

Damon Rain

Life As A Male Erotica Writer, Magic Means Series, self-publishing

Founder: Magic Means Book 1 Is Free!

Founder-GenericSo is Seeker: Magic Means Book 2, sort of. Let me explain briefly.

First, I’d like to thank the readers who stepped up and reported that Founder needed a price match (It was free everywhere OTHER than Amazon at the time, see the previous blog post), because I’m sure that helped. I’d like to thank Amazon as well, because they could have simply denied my request and discarded the reports you submitted. Thanks for setting my book free, Amazon, you’re pretty cool after all.

This week nearly two thousand people downloaded Magic Means Book 1, and thanks to Amazon setting Magic Means Book 2 free in some regions, it’s been downloaded over three hundred times.

Let’s not forget other platforms, where Magic Means Book 1 and 2 have been downloaded nearly a thousand times, and it’s slowly inching its way up the Romance charts. Barnes & Noble and iBooks are seeing some downloads too, but Smashwords is easily in second place behind Amazon. Thanks to all the platforms that offer Free as an option, it’s the best way to get my new stuff in front of people risk-free so they can see what I do.

I’m still working on getting Amazon to make the second book: Seeker: Magic Means Book 2 free, and they reassure they’re looking into it for me, so here’s hoping. In the meantime, you can download it for free from any other quality EBook retailer, especially Smashwords who offers a basic Kindle version.

I hope you enjoy these books, and please review my work once you’ve finished reading it. Future readers will thank you for giving them even a one line comment, because many decisions to download are based on those and the number of stars you leave behind. Thank you again!

Now, I’m going to get back to work on Gathering: Magic Means Book 3.

OXXO,
Damon

 

Life As A Male Erotica Writer

Starting Over: First Steps

grass-455753_1920I should have titled this: Terror and Loathing: How To Rediscover the Inner Newbie. I thought it might be a little too vague, so I went with the other title you see. Note: This is more of a journal of my misadventures rather than a guide to success – so far.

So, for the second time this year I created a brand new persona and began to build a web presence with good ol’ gumption and sweat equity.

Gumption: writing from a different point of view under the new pen name.
Sweat Equity: starting a whole new novel and writing a couple other stories so said pen name has something to show around and flog a little. That’s not exactly where I started though.

I decided to write under a male name, after discussing it with a good friend of mine who knew about my career adventure under the female name, dick pics and all. Then, I had to choose a name that:
1) sounded slightly comical or over the top so it stuck in people’s heads.
2) Was simple. No Yakovinof Kantspelit, or more realistic sounding name that no one could spell no less remember.
3) Was available as a .com. http://www.damonrain.com is awesome.
4) Was not taken by another highly visible author.
5) Could sound a little sexy if I said it in an announcer voice. DAMON RAIN!

Once I had the name, I got the .com from the cheapest provider I could find and paid the extortion level fee of keeping the address and actual name of the owner (me), secret. I didn’t spend on a 10 year package, but made sure that I got it all for a couple years to start. You can always go back and extend it if things are going well.

Next, I registered my gmail account, twitter account @realdamonrain , Facebook and started an account at Smashwords.

Damon Rain has points of contact and is ready to start publishing. How do I reach the people I want, though? There’s an old fashioned way – find a free platform that’s popular and release your best work there – so I published a few things to LitErotica, possibly the oldest erotic literature site on the Internet. If not the oldest, it is definitely the biggest. Here’s a link to what I’ve put up so far: https://www.literotica.com/stories/memberpage.php?uid=4286231&page=submissions

Okay, so the first chapter of the novel I’m working on is up. People have something to look at with my name on it and I can start feeling for like minded people who like what I’m doing.

Next steps! Time for a WordPress account so I can start that blog! Also, time to get a Goodreads account, so it can point to the blog. It’s also the best place to declare: “I AM AN AUTHOR!” and let people build you up or tear you down as they rate your work. This is where a lot of inexperienced authors fall on their faces, because they may not be ready for prime time (may need more practice writing), they may not value editing enough, or they may have misrepresented themselves knowingly or unknowingly by putting themselves in a popular genre where they have heard there are a lot of readers, but their work may not actually belong there. If you’re going to be honest with anyone about your work, be honest with your readers. That starts with listing your work in the most appropriate genre(s). I can’t claim that I’m an author yet, because I don’t have anything listed with a big retailer, but having the Goodreads account is a good start.

Final touches before getting back to writing that fantastic full-length novel:
1) I grabbed a few royalty free photos from Depositphotos because they’re $1.00 each for my profile picture (A cool magical book, since I’m not using my face and using someone else’s face is uncool and illegal in some places), and a few images for my first covers.
2) I started Tweeting! Sure, I have no followers, but by using hashtags that connect me to readers and promoters in my genre as well as other writers, I’ll eventually get a few if I tweet like I have a million followers hanging on my every word. New followers will see there are already tweets on my account and will have an idea of what to expect.
3) I set my http://www.damonrain.com to forward to my WordPress site.
4) Wrote my welcome page for WordPress as well as my first blog post. I used an image from Depositphotos.com for both that was catchy and applicable. Eye candy is a must.
5) I linked my Facebook and Twitter accounts up to WordPress and added links to my blog that lead to the free stuff I posted on LitErotica. I also flogged that free stuff on Twitter, mentioning @literotica so they could retweet it if they liked, and they did.

So, there’s the legwork I’ve done so far. The cost of this venture has reached about $70.00US, so I’m doing pretty well. Following all that, I got to work on the two projects I’m typing away at.