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lizmonster

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I'm in the process of setting up a paperback on Kindle Direct, and I hit this question:

Does this book contain language, situations, or images inappropriate for children under 18 years of age?

Because I know Amazon tends to keep things like porn and erotica out of searches, I'm wondering if they mean that, or if it's more of a movie-rating kind of thing. I don't want to limit the availability of the book, but I do want to be honest about the content - there's a lot of swearing (f-bombs abound), one scene of sexual abuse, and violence all over the place, some of it pretty gross.

Does anybody know if I'm shooting myself in the foot if I answer "yes" to their question?
 

William Haskins

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I found some discussions (some more productive than others) on other forums. These two may have some value to you.


https://www.reddit.com/r/selfpublish/comments/7hdmmz
 

lizmonster

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Thank you. What I'm getting from these is that yeah, Amazon's probably trying to tag porn/erotica, but nobody actually knows. :)

Using the movie analogy - the swearing alone would get nearly every story in this book an R rating. I don't think there's anything that'd put it in NC-17 territory, though, so I guess by that standard I can say "no."
 

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Don't ever say yes. That will eliminate your ability to advertise with KDP because they don't allow erotica to place ads. It's just shooting yourself in the foot voluntarily.
 

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^^Exactly.

In terms of vulgarity, I would let similar books in your genre determine what is acceptable and what is not. In action adventure, swearing is norm, graphic violence is expected, and sex is okay as long as it is not graphic.

A note on swear words. I normally put some notable quips up front with one or two F bombs just to give the potential reader an idea of what is within. Bad guys use bad words. That is just how it is. More people are put off by unrealistically clean language than are put off by swear words.
 
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MaryLennox

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Eeek. I didn't know this. I clicked yes just because there was swearing, violence, and fade-to-black sex scenes.

What if it's just a regular romantic comedy that has open door sex scenes, but not technically erotica??? Do you click yes or no?

Do people publish erotica and purposely click no?
 

lizmonster

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What if it's just a regular romantic comedy that has open door sex scenes, but not technically erotica??? Do you click yes or no?

I'd click no on that, because there are numerous trade-published books with that level of heat, and they're not flagged on Amazon.

That's my own personal ethical measure, anyway. If I've read worse in something I found on a table in Barnes and Noble, it's a "no" on the "inappropriate" question. There's a huge difference between "yeah, maybe a bit much for a 12-year-old" and "must be over 18 to read." That question is filtering for the latter.
 
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