Why Should YOU be a Blushing Books’ Author?

Blushing Books is not a new company. We are, in fact, the oldest web-based romance and romance erotica publisher. We have been in business since 1991, and sold erotica through mail-order from ’91 through ’98, at which point we moved to web-based publishing via a membership site model.

We opened our first e-book store in 2001. We currently represent around 350 professional romance authors who have met the RWA minimum guidelines.

We pay our authors some of the highest rates in the industry (50% royalty rate), and unlike some publishers who scale rates based on copies sold, we pay our full rate from the first copy out the door.

We publish the majority of our titles to print and audio. (Length restrictions apply.)

Top publicity for our releases, including inclusion in a newsletter of 25,000 readers, inclusion in our in-house Advance Reader Copy program, and a full-time publicist on staff.

Monthly payments for our active and established authors.

Important Note about re-releases and self-published titles:

We have recently begun to receive a large number of submissions of books which have been self-published very recently. We are no longer accepting or interested in looking at books that have been self-published or released with another publisher in the last 12 months unless you are offering us additional titles, or it’s part of a series, and you are offering us additional books in the series.

Unless your book is the first volume in a series and you wish to offer the remaining volumes to us, please do not submit a previously published title to us unless it has been unpublished for at least six months.

We strongly encourage authors to look at the benefits of traditional publishing prior to self-publishing.

Books that are published, then removed from publication, and then republished don’t sell well. Amazon (our largest vendor) screens all books and tags “re-releases” as such, and typically fails to recommend them through their search engines.  Therefore “trying” self publishing with the back up plan of going to a publisher if your sales are not good is rarely going to work well.

Submitting to Blushing Books Publications

We pride ourselves on our quick response times to writers.  Your submission will be acknowledged (and assigned to a reader) within one week, and you will receive a decision on your manuscript within 1-2 weeks.  If you are accepted, it is reasonable for you to expect publication within 6 months of the time we first receive contact from you.

While Blushing Books is always looking for new authors, our publishing schedule is very full right now. As publishing gets more competitive every year, we have had to make the difficult decision to sharply curtail the number of new authors we accept. At this time we are only looking at the following genres from authors who have not been published by us before: Omegaverse, Mountain Men, Cowboy (both contemporary and historical), Dark (which would include Mafia, Motorcycle Club, Enemies to Lovers, Kidnap/Capture, Dark Gothic… ), “Daddy” Dom. All submissions must be HET…no fem-dom or LGBTQ at this time. Books must have a Happily Ever After, and we give strong preference to authors who we believe will be able to develop (or already have) a series and are willing to publish multiple books per year in that series.

What do we accept?

We are a romance publisher. Most of our publications will fall into the “power exchange” genre, but that genre is a broad one. Blushing Books publishes many books with a good deal of erotic content, but we also publish non-sexual stories containing domestic discipline scenes. Books submitted to us should typically follow the basic guidelines of the romance genre. In general, there will be an identifiable hero and heroine who fall in love (usually after an initial period of disliking each other), the conflicts in the book will be centered around something that keeps the hero and heroine apart, and the ending will be either an HEA (happily-ever-after) or at least an HFN (happily-for-now.)

Borrowing from the MPAA rating system, Blushing Books will primarily publish books that fall in the PG-13, R, and X rated categories.

We are far more interested in erotic romance than we are in erotica. Books in which the primary conflict centers around the development of the protagonists’ sexual relationship are unlikely to be published. We want strong action, science fiction, fantasy, mystery, adventure plots, and the development of the relationship occurs within the context of that plot.

We are also NOT interested in books told primarily from a male point of view. The point of view can shift in the book, but the main character – and the main POV – should be that of the heroine.

We accept stories from any conceivable setting: we publish works with a contemporary setting, historical novels, science fiction, fantasy, paranormal romances, and everything and anything in-between. We do ask that your stories come to us well-edited, and that they be complete with original and good dialogue, clear descriptions, a dynamic plot structure, and original and interesting characters.

Well-written manuscripts submitted by writers who have been careful to use proper grammar and punctuation will be given preference over manuscripts that seem to have been hastily submitted with no obvious effort to proofread.

We DO NOT accept partial manuscripts, so your manuscript should come to us complete with original and good dialogue, clear descriptions, a dynamic plot and well-defined characters. However, published authors with a concept for a series may approach us with a proposal. Contact us at the email address below.

We DO NOT accept simultaneous submissions (submissions sent to more than one publisher at the same time). We respond quickly, and if you have submitted to another publisher, please withdraw from the other publisher before you send to us. (We will accept more than one submission from you, however. Feel free to send us everything you would like us to consider.)

We will accept books written in first person, but do not want submissions written in first person – present tense.

Minimum word length is 40,000 words. Any submission in which the customer is not provided at least a “happily for now” ending does not meet our requirements.

Manuscripts should be submitted in .doc or .docx format using the form at the end of this page. Times 12 pt. black font is preferred. Please do not put fancy headings on your book. Do not embed photographs or illustrations in the text, unless an illustration is something like a treasure map that is critical to the plot.Please do include your email address and full real name somewhere in the manuscript itself.

DO NOT email your manuscript. We only accept manuscripts submitted via the form at the end of this page. Emailed manuscripts will not be acknowledged or considered.

We are unlikely to publish:

  • Any story told from a male point of view. The main character must be female and the story told primarily from her point of view.
  • Books containing angels or demons as main characters.
  • Books set in ancient times (ancient Egypt, etc.)
  • Any books that contain gods or goddesses or are based primarily on mythology.
  • Transgender, M/M or F/F titles.
  • Any historical title set after 1930 (This means we are not looking at Depression, World War II or more recent at this time.)
  • Any book which uses first person present tense in the primary action. Short diary or journal entries or letters which use first person present are acceptable.

We do NOT publish:

  • Any story that is in any way demeaning to an individual or group of people.
  • Pedophilia.
  • Sexual incest though big brother/father may spank sister/daughter, and we will consider a story in which step-siblings (not half-siblings) have relationships.
  • NO aggravated rape for purposes of sexual excitement. Rape may be used as part of the plot action, especially supporting character development, but should always be portrayed negatively and should not be described explicitly. Stories that involve a heroine being forced to accept sexual advances in order to advance the storyline may be acceptable, even if they are described for the purposes of sexual excitement. The difference between overt rape and semi- non-consensual sexual activity is a difficult one to explain. What we don’t want are stories about rape for the sake of rape.
  • NO bodily functions as sexual activity (e.g., “golden showers”).
  • NO necrophilia.
  • NO guns, knives or other weapons stuffed in various parts of the female anatomy.
  • NO extreme brutality presented for purposes of sexual excitement (e.g., it can be mentioned that an evil character tortures people or that a character has been tortured in the past or fears it in the future, but this cannot be described in a graphic way.) We are not interested in bloody whippings, branding, needle play, asphyxiation, etc.
  • NO bestiality. This rule refers to common animals indigenous to earth; this does not apply to shapeshifting protagonists and sentient “otherworldly” humanoid animals in sci-fi or fantasy.

A note about “non-consensual” content:

Stories in which the heroine is abducted by the hero have been romance classics for years, and hero’s ability to “overcome” the reluctant heroine is an essential romance plot component. Although it at times can be a fuzzy line, the relationship between the hero and the heroine can be “non-consensual” (i.e., he can abduct her), but individual sexual acts and/or discipline scenes should always be either ultimately consensual on the part of the heroine, or, in the case of domestic discipline, applied to the heroine “for her own good.”

Has your story been previously published?

We are actively looking for any published authors who wish to republish books whose rights have returned to them.  We are particularly interested in romances from the 1980s and before that did contain bdsm play or domestic discipline, and any author who has a novel in which bdsm play or domestic discipline were cut out is encouraged to submit to us with the content restored. For previously published work, we would need some sort of proof that the rights have been returned to you.

Recently, we have received a large number of submissions from authors who previously self-published their titles and who, unhappy with their sales, believe that publishing with a publisher will increase their sales. As of early 2015, Amazon, which is our largest market, seems to be actively “downgrading” re-releases. In spite of marketing efforts, re-releases are never picked up by the algorithm and sales are poor. Please consider the benefits of working with an established publisher prior to self-publishing.

How to Submit

Are you a new author or one who has had fewer than three books accepted / published by Blushing Books? We have NEW UPDATED LINKS to our forms.

Use this form:

NEW author submission form

Are you an established Blushing Books author, one who has had three or more books accepted / published?

Use this form:ESTABLISHED author submission form

If you do not get a response within 1 week, please contact administration@blushingbooks.com

Keep in mind that we…

… no longer accept Chapter One only submissions. You must submit a full document.
… accept only writing in .doc, .txt or .docx format. If you have a story in any other format, and you don’t know how to get it into one of the formats we accept, contact us and we can help.
… will require your to submit a 2-3 paragraph sales blurb with your document. Also include total chapter and word count, and please make it clear whether you intend this book to part of an ongoing series.
… do not accept simultaneous submissions (submissions sent to more than one publisher); however, we respond to submissions quickly.  You can expect to have your submission acknowledged within 72 hours and receive an answer with 2-4 weeks.
… We pride ourselves on our quick publication time. Most submissions are published within 2-3 months of acceptance.