The major difference between erotic romance and erotica is, well, the romance. These stories can, but more often that not, don’t have an HEA (Happily Ever After) ending. When it comes to anthologies, there is also a shorter word length (usually 1,500 – 5,000 words) so there is not much time for character development/relationship development. There is also more frank language involved…time to bring out those colorful words for body parts and the F Bomb.
Getting Your Sexy Back
As you know, romance is getting spicier. Books with a higher sexual tension/sexual encounter quotient are selling better than their sweeter peers. Erotica gives you the perfect opportunity to sex it up. You can let your guard down, maybe try out something too kinky for a romance novel. Or you can perfect your sex writing scenes and get more comfortable with very frank sexual terms (hint: not penis and vagina).
Erotica can provide you with the perfect opportunity to try on another genre. Best of all, it is the literary equivalent of a one night stand. For 5,000 words or under you can try out many subgenres of erotica (and also romance) like sci-fi, Steampunk, Fantasy, Paranormal, and M/M or F/F pairings. There is not long term committment involved, like there is for a novel. And, you might find that this stretches your skills and gives you the confidence to pursue another subgenre you might not have previously considered.
To Sell and then Resale
The dirtiest little secret of writing erotica is that you retain your rights (in most cases). Therefore, that little word drabble to you worked on for a couple of days can go on to sell and then sell again. It can be a somewhat lucrative venture for you. It is a win-win. You get money and experience while you are building you are working on a longer WIP.
Erotica Readers and Writers
I cannot tell you how helpful this site is. There is an authors resource section with calls for submissions, articles on writing, and a treasure trove of stories for you to read and get inspired by.
She is well-respected in the erotica genre and her book (mentioned below) helps you find resources, do some activities to work on your sexual writing, and in general, provides encouragement….you should check her out! This is one of the first books on writing I bought and it is fantastic.
Some of my Erotic Writing
B is for Bondage