Anyone can make money from erotica. If you write and upload a “book” (which is not the same as a novel – erotica books are generally 5-12k words) it’ll get at least half a dozen sales. If you can write fast enough to get a few books up each month, by the end of the year you’ll be making enough money to notice.
They call it the “dirty thirty” – once you have thirty books up, you should be making at least a thousand US dollars per month. If you’re a particularly good writer, or you strike lucky, or capitalise on a trend fast enough, you’ll generally reach (and exceed) that figure way faster.
I got 7 books up in my first month, and made $93 (I’m a fast writer). I published another 7 in month #2, and made $471 (all figures in US dollars). By the end of my fifth month, I had 35 books up (and 13 bundles*) and was making about $2.5k/month.
*bundles = collections of already-published stories.
I’m not really motivated by money (I like my job because I set my own hours and can spend most of my time on creative projects of my choice) but I have friends in the erotica-writing community who didn’t slow down like I did* and they make upwards of $100k/month.
That’s one hundred grand. Per month. All year long.
(I think the current record is $363k in a single month.)
*(I’ve been doing this for just under 3 years – around 33 months – and I have 140 books out + 33 bundles)
Talent definitely helps, but literally anyone who can finish a short erotic story can make some money from it. To make an income from it, you only need a few traits:
1) The ability to write quickly. (NOTE: The ability to write well helps, but it’s not vital.)
2) Self-motivation. (there’s no one breathing down your neck – you need to be able to sit down and put pen to paper (or hands to keyboard) without any external forces pushing you along.)
3) Basic, basic photoshop skills.
4) A willingness to not just write what you want to write, but follow sales.
Currently I make around $2k/month (U.S. dollars), but that’s because I only work on erotica about one day a fortnight. For a while I was making $7k/month, but I realized that I’d rather live a bit more cheaply and spend more time on quiz shows, board games, sitcoms, and just generally having a good time.
(There were also other factors in play, but those will be the subject of tomorrow’s post.)