Thursday, February 19, 2009

Book Block: VIRGIN by Jessica Freely

Warning: This Book Block is for an erotica title. If you are reading this at work, be aware that the links are NSFW and the cover, while tasteful, may get you in trouble. =) You might want to read this at home. By the way, Jessica Freely and I do know each other in real life--bet you can't guess who it really is. =)

Written by Jessica Freely

Book Title: Virgin
Genre: M/M Erotic Paranormal Romance
Format: ebook
Publisher: Loose Id
ISBN: 978-1-59632-741-2

Everybody knows how tough the publishing market is these days. In recent months, we've been treated to one depressing headline after another. With the economic downturn restricting an already struggling print market, it's more important than ever for authors to think outside of the box. That's what I did when I started researching electronic publishing.

I had even more reason to look beyond traditional print markets for my story Virgin. A few years ago, I discovered I have a passion for love stories between male protagonists. Unfortunately, traditional romance publishers do not buy male-male romance, and lgbt publishers are (understandably) looking for tales of gay romance written by actual gay men. What's a girl to do?

Well, I knew there was a market for woman-authored romance between men, because for years I'd been reading bazillions of slash fanfiction stories online. At this time, Virgin wasn't even a glimmer in my eye. Nevertheless, I knew I wanted to do what the slash writers were doing, only I wanted to do it with my own original characters and I wanted to get paid for it. I discovered epublishing. Aha! I thought, here is a medium tailor-made to meet the expectations and desires of the already internet savvy slash audience.

Only just then, no one was doing much of anything with same sex romances. I went ahead and started writing the stories I love anyway. Six months llater, everything had changed. Ellora's Cave, the 800 pound gorilla of epublishing, had decided to give m/m a try, and wonder of wonders, it took off like gangbusters. All of a sudden, everyone was doing m/m. Before long, Virgin found a home with a wonderful publisher, Loose Id (who, incidentally, did not turn up in that first epub market survey), and we've all lived happily ever after.

There are a couple of morals to this story. The first is not to let market conditions dictate what you write. Markets change. The second is that there is always a workaround. Thinking creatively about who your audience is, where you can find them, and how you can connect with them are all essential marketing tools not to be neglected.

A bit about Virgin: When Joam, a shape-shifter with otherworldly sexual powers, makes love with hustler Blake, neither realizes they are foiling the plans of a cabal of sorcerers. Now, Blake has robbed them of their virgin sacrifice and they want retribution in blood.

Where To Buy The Book:

Jessica's Website:


ryan field said...

I like the shifter thing. Looks good.

Anonymous said...

This looks like a book I'd like! I'm adding it to my list of things to read. I've purchased ebooks from both Loose Id and Ellora's Cave in the past, and I recommend both for their quality and specialized romances. Ellora's Cave offers more in the realm of erotica, while Loose Id books seem to be a smidgen lighter on sexual encounters. At least from what I've read!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for having me over today, Jenny!

Anonymous said...

Hmm, nice advice on publishing. Yeah, many options are opening up for authors with the change in technology. Ebooks are running great too.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone.

It is an exciting time for writers, Shruti. And Alicia, LI editors tell me that their readers want rich, intricate story lines, so that may be a reason for the difference between the two houses. Of course myself, I say, why not have both? LOL