Black Lotus Books Publishing
Who We Are
Black Lotus Books Publishing was founded to help authors of taboo romance, erotica, and dark fantasy make their creative works a success. Our goal is to put quality taboo literature in the hands of readers who want it.
We understand the unique difficulty in publishing and selling taboo literature. As it stands, many of the major online platforms and mainstream booksellers have strict guidelines prohibiting the sale of taboo content. Even the most lenient of the self-publishing platforms, Smashwords, discourages content depicting non-consensual sexual acts and sexual slavery. Every day, another taboo author finds their creative work has been flagged for inappropriate content. In many cases, these authors and their work are banned outright from these platforms.
Black Lotus Books Publishing wholly supports your human right to free speech. We believe you have the right as the creator of your fictional universe, to weave your words as you see fit. Our content guidelines are perhaps the most liberal in the publishing industry. Not only will we celebrate and promote your books, we’ll fight to keep them available in bookstores around the globe.
Self-published authors have it hard enough trying to make their publishing dreams a reality. Self-published authors of taboo content have it far worse. Not only do the major retailers discourage their content, the market for taboo literature is far smaller than the mainstream. Black Lotus Books understands the uniqueness of the situation, and the inherent difficulty in finding an audience for taboo content. For these reasons, we staff a team of world-class marketing specialists to help ensure our authors’ books get found by their target audience.
Why Black Lotus Books Publishing
The Trouble with Traditional Publishers and Self-Publishing
Most traditional publishers reject works of taboo romance, erotica, and dark fantasy outright. The moment you tell your prospective publisher your romance novel about a young man’s love affair with his step-mum, they close the door. Often, if your erotica portrays bestiality, even in the form of fantastical creatures like werewolves and unicorns, your manuscript will be rejected. If you present a publisher with a dark fantasy novel that includes detailed descriptions of rape or extreme gore, they’ll tell you to look elsewhere.
Taboo writers are a unique breed; they rarely submit to the whims of the mainstream. Rather than alter their content to fit social norms, taboo writers are forced to self-publish. Where they’re able to get their content online, they’re forced to conceal the true nature of their stories. Because of this, unsuspecting readers are more likely to complain about their books, which can get the author banned. If a taboo book manages to fly beneath the radar, it’s probably because the book is still going unnoticed and not getting sales or reviews.
Quality Is the Key to Success
Most taboo authors write under a pseudonym. In many cases, their closest friends and family members have no idea how they spend their creative time. It can be exceptionally difficult to find someone to read your work of taboo fiction the whole way through. It can be even harder to find someone with the editorial know-how to identify errors in your manuscript.
Hiring a freelance to proofread and edit a manuscript can run in the hundreds, or even thousands of dollars. Self-publishers can rarely afford to invest that much money in a work of taboo fiction, which is going to have a difficult time getting published and seen. Thus, their books are often fraught with errors. One poorly written or formatted book can turn a reader against you forever. Conversely, a properly edited masterpiece can turn a reader into a lifetime devotee!
Quality is the key to your success as an author, and Black Lotus Books can help you achieve that.
We Have a Team of Editors
When you submit your manuscript to a traditional publisher, they assign it to a single editor for review. As you probably understand, the more you read something, the more likely you are to miss an error. When you publish with Black Lotus Books, we assign an entire team of experienced editors to proofread your manuscript and make the appropriate corrections. This additional scrutiny ensures your final draft is a flawless work of art before going to print.
A Bookstore Tailored to Your Genre
When you publish with us, your book will be available for sale in the Black Lotus Book store. Our goal is to see the Black Lotus Books store become the #1 seller of taboo romance, erotica, and dark fiction by 2021. Our team of SEO, marketing, and advertising specialists are working day and night to ensure this happens. This means that when your book is listed for sale in our store, your books will reach your target audience: readers of taboo literature. You won’t have to worry about getting banned on one of the major sites. You’ll always have a reliable selling platform with Black Lotus Books.
Just because the major retailers discourage your content, doesn’t mean you can’t publish your books there. As the old saying goes, it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission. As far as we’re concerned, banning books is censorship, and in the case of the major bookselling giants, it’s distributed unfairly among their authors.
For example, Tampa, by Alissa Nutting, published by HarperCollins, is available for sale in nearly every online retail chain, despite containing graphic scenes of a female pedophile grooming and sexually assaulting children. If Alissa Nutting is allowed to exercise her free speech and profit off of it, then we believe you should have that same right. Presumably, Tampa’s publication by HarperCollins is the reason for its continued sales on sites like Amazon and Barnes & Noble, despite multiple complaints. It’s a testament to the influence of traditional publishing. While Black Lotus Books is nowhere near the powerhouse HarperCollins is, we will absolutely fight tooth and nail to keep your books for sale in the major book retailers.
For the record, Black Lotus Books has a zero tolerance policy on pedophilia. It’s the one and only taboo we won’t publish. If you write stories glorifying the abuse of children, we suggest you seek counseling, find a book agent, and try to get a publishing contract with HarperCollins.
Printing books can be expensive. Many of the online retailers offer print-on-demand services for readers who want them. But that’s only helpful if your books are listed in the retail chains. Many taboo writers, especially erotica authors, write short stories. It’s rare that a reader would pay to print and ship a novelette of 9,000 words. But that doesn’t mean there’s not a market for taboo paperbacks.
When you publish with us, we’ll get your book into eBook and paperback form. We’ll print in bulk, and list them for sale in our online bookstore. For taboo romance and erotica authors, we’ll distribute your paperbacks to adult stores throughout North America.
If your stories are short, we can add them to compilations of taboo romance and erotica short stories, from which you will receive royalties on both eBook and paperback sales.
Continuous Book Promotion
Publishing your book will cost us money. Naturally, we want your book to sell, perhaps even more than you do! Rest assured, when you publish with Black Lotus Books, our team of SEO, marketing, and social media specialists will ensure your book is found by readers who want it!
Traditional publishers have greater reach when it comes to marketing your book. But that reach comes at a cost to you, via your royalties. Most traditional publishers pay between 10% and 20% royalties on net sales; that is, sales after the cost of production, distribution, and the like. One of the appeals of self-publishing is the higher royalty percentage paid by the major online retailers like Amazon, which range from 30% to 70%. But the higher royalty rate comes at a price; the likelihood that your book will sit in the virtual ether, unseen. That is of course, until it gets flagged or banned.
Black Lotus Books was founded to help taboo authors. We want you to keep as much as your hard-earned profits as possible. Depending on your contract, when you publish with Black Lotus Books, you may receive up to 90% of your royalties.
Another appeal of traditional publishing is the potential for an advance against your book’s royalties. First time authors rarely qualify for such advances. While it does happen for mainstream authors, it’s all but unheard of in taboo genres. Black Lotus Books does provide book advances to taboo writers. Whether or not you’ll receive an advance on your book’s royalties can be discussed during your book contract negotiation.
More Creative Control
A major complaint among authors who seek out traditional publishing is diminished creative control over their content. A publisher invests a lot of money into your book. Not only do they want to make that money back, they also want to make a profit. The easiest way to do that is to publish books that follow a prescribed formula. In order to have their manuscript accepted for publication, authors are often forced to change their story to conform to the publisher’s format.
Black Lotus Books Publishing has no desire to change your story. You’ve poured your heart and soul into your creation. Your story deserves to be told according to your creative prerogative. That said, if your story is less than stellar, we may provide suggestions to help you make your book engaging. You want your readers glued to your pages. We can help you do that while allowing you the final say in how your story unfolds.
What We're Looking For
Quality Is King
Whether your work of taboo fiction is a 1,000 word flash fiction, or a 150,000 word epic fantasy, the quality of your writing and story will determine whether or not we can accept your work for publication. Black Lotus Books Publishing is here to make authors successful. We can’t do that if your story is unreadable. That said, if your story has potential and your issues are fixable, we welcome you to resubmit your manuscript at any time.
It Must Be Taboo
Mainstream romance, erotica, and fiction authors have myriad avenues for selling their work. Black Lotus Books is here for authors of taboo literature, who are vastly limited in their publishing options. As such, we do ask that your story includes taboo material. Examples might be, a romance between relatives, erotica involving water-sports, or a fantasy with excessive gore or tragedy.
In other words, we’ll need your story to contain one or more of the following taboo subjects: age differences (excluding pedophilia), anal sex, bestiality, blood or blood play, BDSM, breeding and pregnancy, cannibalism, choking, dubious consent or rape, exhibition and voyeurism, female ejaculation, foot fetish, furries, gratuitous gore, group sex, incest, infidelity, interracial sex, lactation, LGBTQ relationships and sex, masturbation, necrophilia, oral sex, sadomasochism, tentacles, water-sports and feces, and pretty much any miscellaneous fetish you can think of.
Check Your Tense
Stories written in the first person present tense are becoming more popular among the younger generation of writers. But for many readers, books written in this viewpoint make it harder for the reader to immerse themselves in the story. This is especially true for erotic works. The only time it makes sense to write a story in the first person present tense, is if your character is journaling, or recounting a memory as though it’s taking place. Barring these exceptions, we prefer your stories told in either the third person past tense, or first person past tense.
Here are some examples of viewpoint and tense.
Third Person Present Tense (Preferred)
Emily woke up at dawn. She walked to the window. The sun had just risen. She would have loved some coffee. She decided to head to the kitchen. When she went downstairs, she found John with a freshly brewed pot in hand. “Good morning,” he greeted warmly.
First Person Past Tense (Acceptable)
I woke up at dawn. I walked to the window. The sun had just risen. I would have loved some coffee. I decided to head to the kitchen. When I went downstairs, I found John with a freshly brewed pot in hand. “Good morning,” he greeted warmly.
First Person Present Tense (Discouraged)
I wake up at dawn. I walk to the window. The sun has just risen. I would like some coffee. I decide to head to the kitchen. When I go downstairs, I find John with a freshly brewed pot in hand. “Good morning,” he greets warmly.
Take It Easy on the Adjectives
Many romance and erotica authors make the mistake of loading up their sentences with adjectives. They do so believing that the more colorful descriptions they use, the more sultry their erotic scenes will sound. But too many adjectives in a short space of time can make you sound desperate. It can also force the readers to pause and ponder the meaning of your exotic vocabulary. They may also have to work harder to visualize so many attributes at once.
You don’t need to load up your sentences with descriptions to tell an amazing story. If you want your readers to experience your characters’ sensations, spend more time investing in their backstory. Set a proper scene, and build up to the erotic encounter.
Here are some examples of what we mean.
Acceptable Amount of Adjectives
“His hard manhood grazed her posterior. He reached down to the hem of her shirt and slowly pulled it up and off of her, freeing her breasts.”
Unacceptable Amount of Adjectives
“His hard, aching manhood grazed her tight, nubile posterior. He reached down to the hem of her short, white, thread-worn shirt, and slowly pulled it up and off her, freeing her young, perky, milky-white breasts.”
Black Lotus Books Publishing Welcomes All Word Counts
Whether you have a haiku or an epic novel, Black Lotus Books is happy to publish your work. Anything above 1,500 words can be sold as an eBook, and shorter works of fiction can be added to compilations for sale as eBooks or paperbacks, from which you’ll receive a percentage of the royalties. The finer points of how your story can be sold can be discussed during your contract negotiation.
Join Black Lotus Books Publishing
We’re Taking Manuscript Submissions Now
We project the Black Lotus Books store to be online by November 1st, 2020. We want the Black Lotus Books brand to remain synonymous with quality, which is why we want talented taboo writers like you. Contract negotiations can take some time, but our staff is working around the clock to get quality taboo literature on our virtual bookshelves.
Manuscripts are reviewed in the order in which they’re received. Submit your manuscript now to reserve your place in the queue. Once we’ve reviewed your work, we will contact you via email with our decision, as well as any suggestions we might have, or corrections you might need to make. Once your story is accepted, we’ll begin negotiating your contract. We’ve tried to keep our contracts as straight forward as possible, ensuring the process is quick and painless.
Once your book contract is signed, we’ll put your manuscript in the hands of our editing team, who will toil day and night to get your book corrected and formatted for sale in eBook form and print. As soon as your book is ready for sale, it will be published immediately and distributed globally.
Contact Black Lotus Books Publishing
We’re here for authors, and we’re happy to help you in any way we can. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have. Email us at [email protected]. We’re excited to have you as a Black Lotus Books author.
Submit Your Manuscript
Formatting Your Manuscript
Before you submit your manuscript for review, please do your best to ensure your document is formatted according to the specifications below. If you need help achieving these settings, read our helpful guide on How to Format Your Manuscript.
- Page Size: 5.5″ x 8.5″ / 140 mm x 216 mm
- Page Margins: Mirrored Margins; Top and Bottom .75″, Inside and Outside .5″, Gutter .3″
- Chapter Headings: Font – Times New Roman, 26pt; Before Spacing – 76pt; After Spacing – 36pt. Chapter Titles should be centered with no indent.
- Body Text: Font – Times New Roman, 10pt. Body text should be justified.
- Indents: First line of chapters and new sections should NOT be indented. Regular paragraph indents should be set to .25″.
- Line and Paragraph Spacing: Single Line. Do not put spaces between paragraphs unless there is a clear break in the story. For short breaks, use one line. For large changes in scene or shifts in perspective, use three lines.
- Avoid Orphaned Words and Sentences (Recommended): While it’s not a requirement for submitting your manuscript for review, before your book goes to print, your editors will ensure your words and paragraphs fit neatly on the page. If you really want to impress your editors, check your manuscript for orphaned words, sentences, and paragraphs (see the description below).
Please don’t let formatting difficulties deter you from submitting your taboo story!
If you have any trouble formatting your manuscript, let us know! We’re happy to help!
Send Us Your Manuscript
To submit your manuscript, please email a Microsoft Word Document file (.DOC, .DOCX), or PDF to: [email protected]. If for some reason you only have an .EPUB or .MOBI file, you can send us that. However, we’ll have to convert it back to Word so you can make the necessary formatting changes before you resubmit it.
Along with your manuscript file, please include the following in formation in your email:
- Your Author Name
- Book Title
- Series and Volume (if applicable)
- Book Cover (if you have one you’d like to use)
- Approximate Word Count
- Genre (Taboo Romance, Taboo Erotica, Dark Fiction)
- Applicable Sub-Genres or Category Tags (Paranormal, LGBTQ, BDSM, etc.)
- Brief Description (Give us an idea of what we’re in for)
Feel free to include any other information about you or your book that you feel is pertinent. We don’t require a title page or any front or backmatter. We can gather that information later.
We respond to all inquiries. If you don’t hear back from us soon, please check your spam folder. You may also contact us anytime, at [email protected].
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