Bookshelf | Reports | Community | KDP Select

Home » Amazon KDP Support » Ask the Community » General Questions

Thread: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey


Reply to this Thread Reply to this Thread Search Forum Search Forum Back to Thread List Back to Thread List

Permlink Replies: 50 - Pages: 4 [ 1 2 3 4 | Next ] - Last Post: Feb 13, 2018 11:24 AM Last Post By: Morgan Carlson
Cynthia E. Gould

Posts: 136
Registered: 03/14/17
Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 9:47 AM
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Hello all! I've found blogs and posts all over, but things change so rapidly, I would appreciate the opinions of erotica writers who have published stories in the past six months.

In your mind, what word count equals a 99 cent story, and what word count should be a $2.99 story?
In the stories you've seen on AmZN over the past six months, what seems to be the average?

Thank you all SO much for any input!
Diana Persaud

Posts: 2,780
Registered: 10/07/13
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 9:52 AM   in response to: Cynthia E. Gould in response to: Cynthia E. Gould
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
I don't think the more successful erotica authors hang out here, at least not the majority.
They have a place where they can discuss such things.

But you can gauge for yourself by studying the top 100 lists and looking at back list titles.

Those who write in specific niches can charge more than "general" erotica.

Edited by: Diana Persaud on Feb 6, 2018 9:53 AM
Diana Persaud

Posts: 2,780
Registered: 10/07/13
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 9:53 AM   in response to: Cynthia E. Gould in response to: Cynthia E. Gould
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Edited to remove duplicate post.

Edited by: Diana Persaud on Feb 6, 2018 9:53 AM
Cynthia E. Gould

Posts: 136
Registered: 03/14/17
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 9:55 AM   in response to: Diana Persaud in response to: Diana Persaud
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Thanks - I've been meaning to do the math on the top 50. That's for tomorrow me to deal with. Haha.

I assume the biggest writers are too busy writing, instead of procrastinating, which is why I pop in here.
Morgan Carlson

Posts: 170
Registered: 04/29/16
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 10:17 AM   in response to: Cynthia E. Gould in response to: Cynthia E. Gould
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
As always, there's that group that says not to go under 2.99, but I find that I can't throw a 3,500 word story out there for over 99 cents. Others do it, certainly, but I don't think that's enough content. Some of my reviews even come back stating that it was too short (and that they wanted more). Last year, I would have said not to go under 14,000 words for 2.99, but sometimes people don't buy for less, thinking that the quality is bad or something.

I'm planning to release a 2.99 story in the next few days, that isn't 14,000 words long. I can let you know if it sells at all. :P

Last year this was the way I set my prices:

Under 7k, 99 cents.
7k to 14k, $1.99
14k $2.99.

I didn't release any longer stories that I felt warranted $3.99.

Last year I was in the top 100 at least ten times, and my lowest rank was 66th place. Sadly, I've been stuck in the 500s since my December plunge (it was going back and forth between 100 and 250 for 6 months). I did release one story last month for 2.99, but it wound up in the dungeon (because of the cover) so it didn't sell anything until I bumped it down to 1.99. My older 2.99s are selling still, but not as much as they once were.

I imagine, that the more popular you are and the amount of content in your stories, you can get away with charging more. That, and you'd need to sell six 99 cent stories to get roughly the same revenue for one sale of the $2.99s. So some authors might play the difference and just accept less for more.

Anyway, that's just from what I have done, and I'm still trying to figure out the perfect equation.
Cynthia E. Gould

Posts: 136
Registered: 03/14/17
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 10:43 AM   in response to: Morgan Carlson in response to: Morgan Carlson
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Thank you very much for this answer! Your numbers are almost exactly what I was thinking.
I need to set a system and not think about stupid numbers again for at least a year.
Morgan Carlson

Posts: 170
Registered: 04/29/16
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 12:43 PM   in response to: Cynthia E. Gould in response to: Cynthia E. Gould
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Cynthia E. Gould wrote:
Thank you very much for this answer! Your numbers are almost exactly what I was thinking.
I need to set a system and not think about stupid numbers again for at least a year.

You're very welcome. :) I sometimes play with the equation a little, and change the numbers from time to time, just to put things on a longer sale than a countdown deal, but sometimes I even bump a 99 cent one higher, and it gains new interest. Obviously, there's no exact science to it. Although I have a spread sheet that will tell me how many stories I need to reach certain amounts based on the average. Sadly, my goals are far, far away!

I looked at the #5 in the erotica genre a few weeks ago, and they had almost 900 things for sale (ebooks and collections). It might take a little while to catch up to that volume. And here I was aiming for number one! :P
writerbn

Posts: 5,813
Registered: 05/12/12
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 1:36 PM   in response to: Cynthia E. Gould in response to: Cynthia E. Gould
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Cynthia E. Gould wrote:
Hello all! I've found blogs and posts all over, but things change so rapidly, I would appreciate the opinions of erotica writers who have published stories in the past six months.

In your mind, what word count equals a 99 cent story, and what word count should be a $2.99 story?

Never, never, never price anything under $2.99, regardless of length. This is the rule I've followed for the past two years. A discount for a promotion is fine.

In the stories you've seen on AmZN over the past six months, what seems to be the average?
No idea. You have to ignore all the cra*ppy "$0.99 for a bundle of 120 stories!". Mine sell at 2.99 per short, $3.99 for a bundle of three, and $5.99 to $9.99 for longer bundles and boxed sets. In general, word count for shorts is largely irrelevant (assuming a minimum of 3K) when it comes to price. It all depends on the kink or niche and how hot it is.

BTW, this question comes up a lot at the "eroticauthors" Reddit, so much so that it's part of the FAQ. Don't take my word for it, but head over there and browse the FAQ.
Cynthia E. Gould

Posts: 136
Registered: 03/14/17
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 1:43 PM   in response to: Morgan Carlson in response to: Morgan Carlson
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
I'm still slogging along to hit the "dirty thirty", so I have a LOT of catching up to do!
Cynthia E. Gould

Posts: 136
Registered: 03/14/17
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 1:45 PM   in response to: writerbn in response to: writerbn
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Thanks so much for your input!
I've seen this opinion float around, and though I don't disagree, I'm torn...
Selling a shorter story for too much seems wrong. And selling a 8,000 word story for the same amount as a 14,000 word story seems wrong.
Basically, math always seems wrong to me. Hence the asking for advice so I can ponder further. Thanks!
writerbn

Posts: 5,813
Registered: 05/12/12
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 2:18 PM   in response to: Cynthia E. Gould in response to: Cynthia E. Gould
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Cynthia E. Gould wrote:
Selling a shorter story for too much seems wrong. And selling a 8,000 word story for the same amount as a 14,000 word story seems wrong.
14K is right in the "dead zone" for word counts: too long for a short, and not long enough for a novella. I have a few shorts at 8K, but most are 5K to 6K.

I know what you're saying about it seeming wrong, but take a look at the erotica bestsellers on Smash*words some time. You'd be surprised...
Morgan Carlson

Posts: 170
Registered: 04/29/16
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 2:28 PM   in response to: writerbn in response to: writerbn
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Well, I'm always up for an adventure. I have upped some of my prices and I'll see if there is a drop in sales or not. I will still keep the ones under 5k at 99 cents. But sometimes I feel that enough effort goes into my stories that 99 is a little too low for the effort. Especially if nothing moves.

It'll be an experiment.
writerbn

Posts: 5,813
Registered: 05/12/12
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 3:14 PM   in response to: Morgan Carlson in response to: Morgan Carlson
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
Morgan Carlson wrote:
Well, I'm always up for an adventure. I have upped some of my prices and I'll see if there is a drop in sales or not. I will still keep the ones under 5k at 99 cents. But sometimes I feel that enough effort goes into my stories that 99 is a little too low for the effort. Especially if nothing moves.
The problem with shorts is that you have to crank out an endless stream of them; the authors making big bucks are publishing one per day. I'm nowhere close to that level of output, especially since I juggle several other writing projects, along with a day job. However, my experience is that if you don't get sales within the first few days, it's best to move on to the next one.

It'll be an experiment.
It always is, especially if you use Kay Yu. I don't anymore.
Morgan Carlson

Posts: 170
Registered: 04/29/16
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 6, 2018 3:57 PM   in response to: writerbn in response to: writerbn
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
I saw in the past that there were people doing two shorts a day, or just one longer. I tried to do half that pace last year, and burned myself out. I'm adopting a slower pace this year. I never linger on one, since sales are uncertain. I had a super short I did last year where I thought it wouldn't sell much, and it's my best seller to date (not best earner, but in sales). I was surprised. Whereas a few I put a lot of effort into amounted to nothing at all.

I don't want to write trashy stories, but I'm also aware that a lot of time can't be wasted on something I'd price out at 99 cents. Fortunately, I have more of an outside job as my main, and in the winter months it takes a backseat.

I am attempting to go wide with a few titles, but it will be a while before I see much move in those selections.
writerbn

Posts: 5,813
Registered: 05/12/12
Re: Erotica Writers - Word Count / Price Survey
Posted: Feb 7, 2018 4:48 AM   in response to: Morgan Carlson in response to: Morgan Carlson
Click to report abuse...   Click to reply to this thread Reply
I'm pretty much burned out on the shorts, too. I've tried, more than once, moving to long-form romance, but it requires more dedicated effort and time than I have now. Besides, I miss the steady income stream from erotica.

I still plan to get my romance novel finished, but it's taken a back seat to the necessity of paying a few bills. Meanwhile, I have my literary fiction and science fiction projects clamoring for attention, too...
Legend
Helpful Answer
Correct Answer

Point your RSS reader here for a feed of the latest messages in all forums