As I’m sure those of you who follow along in my particular genres of choice are aware, the environment for selling erotic fiction is steadily growing more, how should I say this… challenging.
For a while now, I’ve been trying to determine the best way forward in this new and increasingly hostile retail landscape for fiction like mine. I will spare all of you my ranting and raving about the particular socio-political reasons for this new, developing trend of suppression of erotic fiction (Megan Michaels has a good summary here), other than to say that it’s happening — and it’s likely to get worse over time.
To that end, after long discussions with my dear friend Megan Michaels, both of us came to a decision that we’re implementing immediately. In addition to making my work as widely available as I can (within certain business requirements) I will now also sell my books direct from this website. When searching my Books pages on my website, along with the various retailer options you’ll also see an icon labeled Buy Direct From Trent — that’s the icon I want you to click first:)
Why Buy Direct?
Of course, I’m biased, so I think all my readers should buy direct from me, but here are some points I want to highlight about buying direct from the author:
- Buying direct from Trent is safe. Gumroad, my payment processor and host of my storefront, utilizes security technology that’s as good (or better) than almost anything out there. You can buy from me with peace of mind.
- Buying direct means you get the book cheaper than you can anywhere else. Most of the books I’m selling direct have a price that’s about 15% less than any other retailer. (Just enter the code “thankyoudiscount” at checkout)
- Buying direct means you get the book first, before any other retailer does. At this point, new books of mine will be available exclusively on my website before they go up for sale anywhere else. I’m considering anything from 3-7 days, but that’s subject to change.
- Buying direct is the single best thing you can do for an author you love. Yes, reviews are awesome — I love those too — and still very much want you to join my mailing list. But I want to be able to sell my work directly to you without a middleman retailer skimming their cut (those same retailers that indirectly determine what I can and cannot write — and you, dear reader, what you can and cannot read).
- Buying direct means you will no longer have to worry about pearl-clutching moral panics abruptly washing your favorite books from retailers. The books will always be available, just where you expect them to be.
- You’ll have the everlasting gratitude of your hard-working smut-slinger, Trent. He’ll be able to write books faster too 🙂
Readers may or may not realize this, but retailers have a strong influence on the content of our books. If you’ve ever wondered why this or that dirty kink/trope/scenario doesn’t often appear in books, 99% of the time, it’s because the author is afraid to include it lest the book subsequently be suppressed at (or outright banned from) retailers. I’m not talking about illegal content here either, I’m talking about perfectly legal content… that retailers have decided in their infinite wisdom (catch that sarc there?) they don’t want to sell. That’s of course their right, but it’s happening for reasons that, let’s be frank, are pretty ridiculous. The effect is the same: content and books you love — and want to pay hard-earned duchats for — is hidden, suppressed, or banned.
Do you like faceless, unaccountable executives in NYC or Silicon Valley determining for you what is and is not okay for you to buy and read? I didn’t think so.
Now, this current environment is just the way things are. That said, I do have a (rather blunt) opinion about this reality.
I hate it.
With selling direct, that impediment, that roadblock… is simply gone. I’m free to experiment with different content, kinks, and narrative forms. Some ways of telling a story simply don’t translate well to the narrow forms allowed at retailers. That’s no longer a problem either :::Trent rubs hands together like super villain:::
What does that mean, specifically?
Periodically, I’ll be releasing website-exclusive content — meaning it will only appear at the website. This will largely be content that is “too hot for the pearl-clutchers” in a form labeled Trent’s Dungeon. (Those posts haven’t appeared yet, but they’re coming soon) And yes, your first impression about that name is pretty much correct; it’s going to be what you think it is;)
There are several novel/story/vignette ideas that I’ve want to publish, but haven’t, because I knew they stood a high likelihood of being suppressed or banned because they were too hot for the delicate sensibilities of our new Silicon Valley overlords.
Some of the Trent’s Dungeon content may or may not be later included and/or collected into e-book form and made available elsewhere (much later), but at this time, the vast majority of it is intended to be available in only one place — this website.
This is a work-in-progress that’s just getting off the ground, and as such there are bound to be hiccups/issues here and there along the way. With time though, it will be dialed in just the way I envision it, and I’m excited at what the future holds for this mode of making my work available to readers.
I hope you’ll try it out and see what you think. As always, I’m available anytime to answer questions, or address concerns.
Thank you again — so much — for the support you the readers have given me over the years. Your support, encouragement, and kindness means more to me than I know how to express.
(Keep reading for easy instructions on the Buy Direct process!)
Follow Me on Gumroad: https://gumroad.com/authortrentevans
Instructions for purchasing direct:
I’ll walk through the process using one of my books as an example:
1. On my Books page, you’ll see a list of all of my books. When you click on one of the cover images, it will take you to a summary page that shows the description, cover, etc along with the various purchase link icons for the major retailers. Included in that group is the Buy Direct From Trent icon (in this example, we’re using Her Troika), which will take you to the Gumroad storefront for that book here: https://gumroad.com/l/HerTroika
2. On the right hand side, you’ll see a button for purchasing that says “I Want This!” Click that.
3. When you do that, you’re brought to a purchase page that asks for your e-mail address, and a field right below that for entering in your discount code of “thankyoudiscount”. Fill in those two fields.
4. Below those fields, you’ll be prompted to enter payment information (either your PayPal information, or a credit/debit card). Once you’ve entered that, there is a button below that which says “Pay”
5. After you do that, a thank you/confirmation message shows up on your screen that will look like this sample message:
View Product (link disabled for purposes of this example)
Open in App (link disabled for purposes of this example)
View your receipt by clicking here. We have also sent a copy to your e-mail address XX. (<—your e-mail address would show here:)
6. You would then click on “View Product” which is where you will go to find the files you can download. You can choose from .mobi, .epub, or .pdf. It’s here where you are given the choice of either downloading the files to your computer/device OR you can view on the Gumroad app (if you have it installed). Instructions on how to do either are shown below:
How to Download from Gumroad: The following two links give directions on how to download a purchased book from Gumroad.
- Downloading to your Kindle: http://help.gumroad.com/11167-Buyer-FAQ/how-do-i-read-a-document-on-my-kindle
- Downloading to the Gumroad App: http://help.gumroad.com/11167-buyer-faq/using-gumroad-library?from_search=18345371
Personally, I tend not to use apps as they can be confusing, so I almost always just download the files directly to my computer. Once you’ve done that, you can just e-mail the files manually to your direct-to-Kindle address just like you’d do for ARCs.
That’s pretty much it.
1. If this is the first time purchasing through Gumroad, when purchasing a book it will prompt you to create an account (no biggie; it’s very easy).
2. After that initial set-up is done, you can then download the book to your computer/device, OR use the app if you’d like. (Note that there is no requirement to use the app; directly e-mailing the book file to your direct-to-Kindle address works just fine too).
4. In addition to downloading the book direct to your Kindle (as you normally do when sideloading), I tried downloading the Gumroad app as well, and downloaded the book to that. Both options were pretty easy.
5. If you download ARC books from authors, or know how to forward personal documents to your Kindle, you’ll find this process very easy. If you are unfamiliar with either of those processes, the included walk-throughs above are very helpful in learning how this works.
Enjoy! And please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns about the process. I’m happy to help:)