Wednesday, December 19, 2007


So having covered that I think anyone should be able to read anything I thought it might be a good time to realise whose squicks do have to be taken into account--the publishers. So looking at the top 10 erotic romance epublishers what is forbidden if you want to submit to them...

1) Pedophilia 10/10
Apart from being an almost universal squick this might also lead to legal issues.
2) Rape 9/10
Interestingly one press forbids only 'forced seduction', while another forbids rape but allows forced seduction.
3) Bestiality 9/10
Sentient animals are allowed. I would mention that 'sentient' here is used to mean 'like people'. In other contexts earth animals are considered to be sentient (meaning: able to think and feel).
4) Urine and scat 8/10
Many presses mention only 'bodily functions' which technically would include, um, tears, vaginal lubrication and ejaculation. What they mean, however, is poop and pee.
5) Necrophilia 8/10
Although, unlike werewolves etc, it is not specified by any press--but vampires and zombies etc are presumably not considered dead dead.
6) Hate or degradation of demographic groups 5/10
It's a politically correct age....
7) Incest and in once case specifically twincest 4/10
I think some of the others never thought to forbid it, but wouldn't really want it. But it is hard to tell.
8) Excessive, unnecessary or sexualised violence 3/10
This strikes me as massively subjective as an issue.
9) Snuff 3/10
No corpse bonking--ergo no corpse making for the purpose of bonking. Just killing people is fine so long is the plot requires it...
10) profanity 1/10
No one can say cunt. Except in the submission guidelines.
11) Weapons put in va-jay-jays 1/10

Spot the deliberate mistakes
"...not accepting any works of ... prose"
"Ariel, 12 pt"
"Yellow showers"

Of course now I have a strange urge to see how many of these I can slip into a story without actually making it something most erotic romance readers would find objectionable ;)

Does anyone have a manuscript where characters do a don't? let me know and I will see how many presses would consider it in a submission :)


Pepper Espinoza said...

Yellow showers?! lmao

That reminds me of a Simpsons' quote (though everything does these days)

Kent Brockman: And thanks to Homer Simpson, we're all taking golden showers!

Anonymous said...

I had one picked up recently by Torquere that violates about three of them, technically.

Ricky Jax has been dead for 16 years. Doesn't mean he's not still stripping and earning his rent money. His demonic boss likes to screw him to death with a spiked penis that comes poison.
(violates 5, 8,9, 11) But Ricky keeps waking up.

Also had one picked up by Ellora that violates 6. It's a same-sex romance and they encounter a lot of homophobia and racism. (I went so far as to use "nigger.")

Anonymous said...

Hmmmm let's see,
My new one coming out in January has Rape, cutting during sex, and lots of profanity.

My Horror novella for 2009 has ... I guess forced sodomy could be considered rape, bestiality, sexualised violence, killing during the sex act, and lots of profanity. But it is horror!

Pepper Espinoza said...

Now that I think about it, Mad World had sexualized violence, rape (well, it was on that very fine line), implied under-age sex, and a lot of harsh profanity.

Anonymous said...


Ummm...might I have the title and place where I could purchase said book coming out in January?

Thanks so much


veinglory said...

LOL, Deb. Cheryl's book is certainly on my Xmas reading list :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Deb,

The January book is Titled: The Thin Wall, and the promo week is January 14th but you might see blog stuff on it before then.

I just hit amazon last night, minus all the book description stuff, so I have to make sure they got all that ... should be listed other places in a week or so.

Thanks for the interest. Hope you like the cover, she snickers shamelessly.

Stacia said...

My January release (cowritten with Anna J) has 9,7,8 & 10. It got an X rating from EC.

Anonymous said...

oooh what's the title for that one.