Lately, I've seen a trend for editors from print and epublishing asking for hotter and more erotic books. Now, for me, I write pretty hot, though at times, I can be fairly tame, depending on the story in question. But it's been something that have authors who don't write erotica-styled romance-- is there too much of a push for hotter romance?
Erotica romance-- the new big thing. Lately, the news has been commenting on the trend in print publishing of pushing the sexual boundaries in books now-- and there are new imprints that show that aspect in romance writing. Some authors feel that if they don't write hotter, that they won't get the sales. This might be true, but they have to remember something-- this is a trend. In time, trends change and shift with the demands of the reading public.
When I first got into ebooks, I was reading erotica styled romance nonstop. Why? It was new, it was exciting, and I was so damn happy to have books with plot that had sex like I know sex can be. Yes, there were HEA (Happily Ever After), but for once, I had books as kinky as they could be and unique storylines. But after a while, I noticed that a lot of the books didn't have good solid plots anymore-- just hot sex. So once again, I was hunting for books with hot sex and solid plotlines.
But Cyn, what does that have to do with why editors are pushing for the hotter than hot stuff?
Cycles. Remember when paranormal wasn't the big thing? Then suddenly it was and now we seem to be hitting certain limits within various areas of paranormal that are overdone. Cyclic-- been there, done that, will do it again sometime in the future. This means that the consumers are demanding hotter, kinkier books and wanting them to be considered mainstream. That means print publishers are grabbing at them-- including epublished authors who have been writing them for years. However, remember, as all cycles end, this too shall pass. Though I doubt it'll ever go away. Being adult about sex and sexuality means learning to accept that some people prefer hot, kinky sex with one person or more than one. I'm glad to see the erotic stuff hit mainstream and find acceptance, not to mention sales.
For all that erotica romance is selling, the one thing that will kill the trend faster than anything is bad plot. Ask people who used to read erotica romance why they stopped and you'll hear a few phrases repeated over and again. "The sex is all the same." "There's no plot to the story." "I don't find myself caring for the characters." "I'm skipping the sex to find the interesting parts of the story." Those are just some of the comments I've heard and said about some erotica romances I've read over the years and currently.
Do I think that erotica romance will be the leader in selling romance books-- not always. Some people will read nothing that is hot. There is a big market for Inspirational romance. Plus, we've seen people look for good quality romance without the kinks and other erotic tendencies. What does this mean? It means erotica romance has a place in the future of romance. It's not going away, but in time-- the demand will lessen and the only requirement editors are going to have is that your book has a solid plot that showcases the characters and the HEA-- regardless of the sensuality level.
I write both erotica romance and your regular hot romance. Well, actually I write women's action/adventure fiction with erotic romance elements. But I'm enjoying this renaissance as it has me digging out my Victorian erotica books as well as pulling out some of my favourite ebooks. In the end-- what matters most to people is that the story has a damn good plot and reason for the sex. If that's there-- then it will sell. Heat rises and falls depending on the market.
So have heart-- if you don't write erotica style, don't unless you want to. Keep writing solid books, increase the type of sensuality you have--- bring it to the fore and you might just surprise yourself on how readers receive your books. In time, the call will be for the less hot-- so let the erotica romance authors have their time-- it's been a long time in coming. Soon, it'll be your turn once again.