Well, All Romance eBooks sent out their e-mail this afternoon. Same story, different book seller. To their credit, ARe is handling it much better. They gave notice of the change in their TOS, but Pseudo Incest and Barely Legal seem to be the targets. They have already pulled titles that violate the new TOS, including one of mine, Sister Takes Over. Don't expect the promised sequel.
My publishing partner, Aimee Seoul, lost four titles. Some other authors have lost half, two-thirds or even more of their catalogs. Some have lost titles that have nothing do with PI or young girls because they used tags that suggested the book included that stuff to reach readers. ARe is also splitting Romantic Erotica from Erotica.
Expect that to further marginalize erotica and make it harder to find and sell. Romantic Erotica can include explicit sex scenes, but is more happily ever after and relationship based. Much of my stuff is Romantic Erotica and it will likely end up there. ARe is having all authors re-shelve their books in a week or so into the the new categories. If ARe is your seller of choice, be warned.
So, that leaves Smashwords. Everyone I know is wondering what Mark Coker will do. Will he cave or will he drop PayPal. I've seen some rumors that suggest he might drop PayPal, but they are rumors. Amazon and Barnes & Noble are mostly immune, but their seems to be some monkey business with the pseudo incest rankings on Amazon, but who knows? Amazon is big enough to tell just about anyone to pound sand.
I've also heard that PayPal also considers BDSM rape. That is a rumor, but a scary one. Tell that to all the loving, monogamous, well adjusted couples that enjoy BDSM play. According to the PayPal rumor, they've been either committing rape or being rapped. I hope that's not true. That would really open up a can of worms and destroy many, many writers.
So, if you like legal sex between step relations, you could soon find yourself underground searching the Internet for quality stuff. It's not that bad yet, but it seems to be heading that way. Hopefully Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and maybe Smashwords, hold the line and support freedom of expression. This has been a rough week and it looks to get rougher.
By the way, if you don't like this, send the retailers an email and tell them. Send PayPal a polite e-mail, preferably one that details how you are closing your account and why. I know it's hard to stand up for erotica, but if you don't do it, who will? No one, that's who. Stay tuned!