New Ongoing Call for Submissions: The Dirty Bits from Carina Press–Erotic Micro-romances

| | 76 comments

May 2018 Update:

Please note: We are currently acquiring erotic romance novellas for publication via The Dirty Bits from Carina Press in November/December 2018. We’d like to see all your OTT sexy holiday stories! Proposals for holiday-themed submissions only will be accepted through June 15th. For non-holiday-themed submissions, we require a full manuscript.

We are also particularly interested in publishing more #ownvoices books in The Dirty Bits line.

April 2018 Update: Comments on this post are now closed. Please read the post and the existing comments thoroughly, and if you still have questions, contact us at Submissions@CarinaPress.com.

December 2017 Update: We have two new calls for The Dirty Bits posted. See the announcement here. 

August 2017 Update: This new line will be called The Dirty Bits from Carina Press. See the announcement here.

Carina Press is pleased to announce a new ongoing call for erotic short romances.

We’re in search of erotic romantic short stories between 10,000 and 17,000 up to 25,000 words, for ongoing publication beginning in Summer 2017.

Description/story focus:

Recognizing that on occasion size does matter, and sometimes we actually just want to read something short that delivers a sexy, quick, fun romance, we’re interested in reading and publishing your stories that deliver a focused romance with explicit sex scenes.

These erotic short stories can be contemporary, paranormal, historical, science fiction or fantasy romances. They should deliver a fast story, one that transports readers from the stresses of everyday life, work and politics for an hour or two. Our two main requirements are that they be erotic or super sexy and they deliver on a romance promise with an HEA or HFN. We won’t demand a major focus on character development, extreme conflict or drawn-out plots for these, because we understand that can be difficult in a limited word count. We’re looking for a focus on escapism, happiness and romance!

Submission link: https://carinapress.submittable.com/submit/77558/erotic-short-romances

Update November 2017: We’d like to emphasize that we have two main requirements for the story content of these micro-romances: they need to contain a romance, with a HEA or HFN, and as they are intended to be erotic romances, the sex and sexual tension should be woven into the romance and a key focus of the stories. Stories with minimal sexual tension, and minimal on-page sex will not be considered the right fit for this particular line.

We would also note that we’re seeing a lot of submissions that spend 25%-50% of the short story on setup. As these are meant to be micro-romances (10k to no more than 25k), the pacing must be tight from page 1, so long periods of narrative setup, infodump and waiting until the protagonists meet and interact will not work for this line.


To submit:

  • Complete* manuscript in .rtf, .doc or .docx
  • Query letter containing a 2 paragraph description of the story, as well as introducing yourself as a writer.
  • NO synopsis required
  • Manuscript must be unpublished material only. No previously pubbed (including self-published) submissions for this particular line, please!

*While Carina Press generally only accepts submissions of full, completed manuscripts, if you have previously published with Carina or another digital/traditional publisher, or if you have independently published multiple books with a solid positive rating history, please query us at submissions@www.carinapress.com about submitting a proposal. If we agree to look at a proposal in place of a full manuscript, the editorial team reserves the right to request a full manuscript prior to making a final decision, and all full manuscripts for accepted novellas would be due to editor 6 weeks after the close of anthology call.


FAQs:

Are same sex pairings permitted? Yes, we’ll absolutely consider same sex pairings or multiples.

What’s the word count for these stories?  Updated November 2017, we will now accept up to 25,000 words, but our minimum word count remains 10,000 words. The word count is 10k-17k 25kwords. It’s okay to cheat a few words longer. If it’s significantly longer than 25k, no problem, we do acquire novellas across genres, so you can submit it as a novella.

If I submit on proposal, when is the full manuscript due if my manuscript is accepted?  Since these will be published on an ongoing basis, we can work with you on delivery dates for your full manuscript.

Do I need to have a synopsis? A synopsis is not required for this particular call, but if you have one, please include it! What we do require is a two paragraph description of the story, to be included in your query letter.

If I’m a returning author, should I submit to you or to my editor? Submit either to Angela or via the Submittable link for returning authors (that link can be found in the Carina Press Author Kit!).

For questions about this call for submissions, please email us at editor@www.carinapress.com

For more information about Carina Press, and to read our submission guidelines, please visit bit.ly/write4cp

*Permission to forward granted*

76 thoughts on “New Ongoing Call for Submissions: The Dirty Bits from Carina Press–Erotic Micro-romances”

  1. R.W. says:

    Excellent! I’m so excited for this call. Quick question though: you say “We’re looking for a focus on escapism, happiness and romance!” Does this mean you’re steering away from darker and/or heavier themes for this particular call? Things like overcoming past trauma, thriller elements, taboo pairings, etc.

    Thanks!

    1. Angela James says:

      RW, we’ll still look at taboo themes, but these are meant to be escapist and still romance, which is harder to achieve in 17k if you go too dark!

      Savannah,
      That’s correct, it’s an ongoing call so it’s not closing. We’ll keep publishing them as long as we keep getting them!

  2. Savannah sunrise says:

    I would just like to clarify something: When you say ongoing, does that mean there is no official end date for submission acceptance?

  3. Hi. Could you tell me how these short stories will be published? Individually or as a collection based on genres? Thanks!

    1. Angela James says:

      @D.M. published individually. This isn’t an anthology call, it’s an ongoing call for submissions.

  4. Kaushik Karforma says:

    Hi, do you have any restrictions on incest?

    1. Angela James says:

      @kaushik we’re really not down with actual incest. Fine with perceived incest (step/adopted/guardian, etc)

  5. Kaushik Karforma says:

    Is there any special formatting required for the manuscript or will double-spaced Times New Roman 12-pt do?

    1. Angela James says:

      @kaushik no special formatting requirements, just make it readable for us!

  6. Carrie Pulkinen says:

    Will you consider previously published work if I have the rights back?

    1. Angela James says:

      @Carrie we will consider previously pub’d work if you also have ideas for new, unpublished work that you’d be willing to also publish with us. We don’t acquire just/only previously pub’d work from any author.

  7. Hello,

    Just three questions for me: is there a cut off date for submissions and can we submit more than one story or is it only one entry per person?

    Thanks,
    Amy

    1. Angela James says:

      @Amy this is not a limited-time call, it’s something we’ll be acquiring on an ongoing basis so you follow the same guidelines as our regular submissions (we do accept more than one at a time from authors)

  8. Ann Patterson says:

    Is there an issue if it’s a dd/lg (daddy dom-little girl) story?

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Ann, no issue with that. We have a dd/lg book coming out soon!

  9. reena singh says:

    dear editors,

    I have a short story appx 24000 words but it is a romance story . It does have the hero and heroine making love but it is not in the erotic genre more towards desire category. Do i submit to you?

    1. Angela James says:

      @reena we accept romance, just follow the directions on the Write for Us page and submit under the correct category (contemporary, paranormal, etc) on our Submittable page.

  10. Kenya Wright says:

    I had a question. Would it be possible to do a novella series or trilogy?

    1. Angela James says:

      Kenya, yes, we will accept series & trilogies, absolutely.

  11. Richard St John says:

    how much do you pay for these ?

  12. rich says:

    when do you pay for these

    1. Angela James says:

      Rich, information about our pay structure and digital royalties can be found at our FAQs: https://www.carinapress.com/blog/submission-guidelines/#4 we do not pay advances, royalties are paid quarterly.

  13. Scott says:

    I have been writing erotic stories for close to thirty years but have never thought about having them published until a friend brought it up about twenty minutes ago. I have been writing an on-going series I guess you could call it about a couple exploring their sexuality in different adventures. Swingers parties, MFM, Gangbangs, anonymous partners, adult book stores I could go on and on. The husband and wife do dabble in the bisexual realm every now and then. I am just curious if those are the types of stories you are looking for. If so as I said I have been writing about the adventures of a couple for awhile so already have a bunch that have just been sitting finished but unread for years now. I just want to make sure I am on the same page as you as far as what you are looking for. I have to say that would be nice so all of my stories don’t go to waste. I am completely new to trying to get published so not sure about formatting or anything. If I am on the right path is there a place to submit a story to have it looked at to make sure I am writing correctly, I guess someone to proof read is the best way to describe what I am thinking. I am just nervous is all. Thank you in advance.

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Scott, congratulations on beginning your publishing journey. It sounds like you’re not completely familiar with the romance genre, so researching romance might be a great place for you to start. I can recommend two websites that are great resources for authors–Absolute Write and Romance Divas, as well as the Romance Writers of America association. All three will have discussion forums and articles that will help you get up-to-speed on the different fiction markets, including romance, and where you can ask questions of fellow authors.

      It sounds to me like what you’re writing right now might not be romance, but more in the world of erotica, but finding some critique partners or beta readers to help steer you might also be beneficial.

      Good luck!

      1. Scott says:

        OK I am very confused then.

        “Recognizing that on occasion size does matter, and sometimes we actually just want to read something short that delivers a sexy, quick, fun romance, we’re interested in reading and publishing your stories that deliver a focused romance with explicit sex scenes.

        These erotic short stories can be contemporary, paranormal, historical, science fiction or fantasy romances. They should deliver a fast story, one that transports readers from the stresses of everyday life, work and politics for an hour or two. Our two main requirements are that they be erotic or super sexy and they deliver on a romance promise with an HEA or HFN.”

        I thought the request was for erotic stories which is exactly what I write as you pointed out. Those were some examples but also have hundreds more that go from before people meet for the first time to their first meeting through the sexual parts and have a happy for now ending.

        You’re not asking for your typical “Romance” stories you’re asking for the erotic type from what I am reading and looks like the other questions people asked were under the same assumption. What part am I getting wrong here? A blending of both the romantic and erotic.

        “we’re interested in reading and publishing your stories that deliver a focused romance with explicit sex scenes”

        – Everything you’re asking for is what I write. I do not write “Romance” I write “Erotic Romances” I guess you could call them. As I said maybe I am just misunderstanding what you’re looking for. It might also be my own fault for describing just one type of stories I have written. Most of my others are more like “Fifty Shades” just without the abuse and with a typical man and woman which from people who have read mine have all found “Suspension of disbelief” to be easier since it is not so far fetched.

        I guess the best way would be for me to just go through what I have and submit. If it’s off the mark I assume someone will let me know. If i’m on the mark I’ll assume someone will let me know. Again I think I just may have given you a bad example of my type of writing.

        You did make me realize I was on the wrong track with those specific stories I mentioned but think I understand now what you’re looking for.

        Thank you for you’re response.

        1. Angela James says:

          Hi Scott! It may be that your books are romance, and possibly the descriptions didn’t do them justice, just as you said. We welcome submissions so please do feel free to send one our way.

  14. Lulu says:

    Is 7,000 words too short if it’s a hot story?

    1. Angela James says:

      Lulu, 10,000 words is our minimum word count, so yes!

  15. Phil Jones says:

    Is there a deadline for these Erotic stories – I realise you said earlier in these emails that it Is ongoing, but that was back in February. Is this still the case?

    Phil

    1. Angela James says:

      Phil, no deadline. This is a new, ongoing line so submissions will remain open for now!

  16. Ruth says:

    My short story is 2000 words. May I still submit it? Thanks!

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Ruth, thanks for your interest. As noted, our minimum word count is 10,000 words.

  17. Natalie says:

    I have the first few chapters complete but not the complete manuscript. I know the guidelines say you want complete manuscripts. Can I send what I have or wait till I’m finished?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Natalie,

      Please wait to submit until your manuscript is complete. This is an ongoing call so there’s no submissions deadline!

      Thanks,
      Stephanie

  18. Erin Novotny says:

    Do you have a preference for POV? Do you want 1st POV or Close 3rd?

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Erin,

      We don’t have a preference. It’s up to the author, what works best for them and the story.

  19. Crimson Syn says:

    Hello, I have a 17,100 word novella- the first in my Fairy Tale erotic romance series I want to put out. I have the copyright to the work and I’m planning on a 5 or 6 book series, not sure yet, but I only have the first book ready. Do you accept series like this and does it matter if the novellas fluctuate with the word count as I go? I don’t really restrict myself in length, but for the most part my books are a short 1-2 hour read.

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Crimson,

      We do accept connected books, as long as each has an HEA. Word count can fluctuate as long as it stays within the word count guidelines for the Dirty Bits program.

      Thanks,
      Stephanie Doig
      Assistant Editor, Carina Press

  20. Scarlett Staunton says:

    Do you accept D/s type stories?
    Is anything off limits such as reluctance or non-consent (with a HEA)?

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Scarlett,
      We do accept D/s stories. We have published many of them over the years so I encourage you to check out our erotic romance books. As for off limits, we’re not accepting rape for titillation or non-consent. We would consider reluctance or forced seduction and will look for context and consent there.

  21. colin campbell says:

    is one allowed to use the Fword and the Cword in the dirty bitsstories

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Colin,

      We do not have language restrictions, as long as the language feels appropriate to the story.

      Thank you,
      Stephanie Doig
      Assistant Editor, Carina Press

  22. Hudson Lin says:

    The submission requirements listed above say max 17k words. However, the first The Dirty Bits book, Seducing His Student, is listed at 23k words. Was that book an exception? How flexible are you with word count?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Hudson,

      We are flexible on upper word count by a few thousand, as long as the story warrants. We’d advise staying at under 25k.

      Thank you,
      Stephanie Doig
      Assistant Editor, Carina Press

  23. R.W. says:

    A while back, I submitted a novella to Carina that was ultimately (and justifiably) rejected. I’ve had some luck with cannibalizing my shelved stories in the past, and believe there are aspects of the aforementioned submission that could be rewritten to fit this line. Would you be open to considering a piece that contains elements of work that has been previously considered, as long as the rewrites are extensive? Thanks!

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi RW, we always allow resubmission if a work has gone through extensive revisions. For this particular call, please keep in mind that it must be sex-focused and have a romance with a HEA or HFN.

  24. Scarlett Staunton says:

    How early does the sex have to come in the story for it to fit. In the book I’m finishing up, the sex starts at about at midpoint. Would this put it as more of an erotic romance short than an erotica short?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Scarlett,
      We are looking for an emphasis on sex and sexual tension early on in the story. While we do not have a set “must have sex at x point” rule, pacing is very important, and the shorter word count does not allow a lot of room early on for set up or infodumping.

      I do want to emphasize that these are erotic romance novellas, not erotica (ie we require a romance arc within the story, with an HEA or HFN for a couple or multiples).

      Thank you,
      Stephanie Doig
      Assistant Editor, Carina Press

  25. Agnia Sambara says:

    Hello. Do you accept submission with a pseudonym on it?

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Agnia! Most of our authors do publish with a pseudonym.

  26. Quick question regarding using descriptive profanity/slang for body parts and sex acts. Is the use of expletives acceptable, as long as it’s not gratuitous?

    Thanks in advance for your response.

    Jessica Swift

    1. Angela James says:

      Hi Jessica,

      We’re fine with profanity, even when it is gratuitous. As long as we’re not talking DEADWOOD level of profanity, that is ;)

      1. Thanks, Angela! Got it–no DEADWOOD level profanity. *makes note* I appreciate you taking the time to respond.

  27. R.W. says:

    Are you open to stories written exclusively from the hero’s POV? Thanks!

    1. Angela James says:

      R.W., yes, absolutely!

  28. Izzy Szyn says:

    Are you open to FF stories?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Izzy,

      Yes, we’d love to see some f/f submissions!
      Thank you,
      Stephanie Doig
      Assistant Editor, Carina Press

  29. Dave Dinsmore says:

    I have 17.5k word Story, plenty of romance, pretty sexuality explicit with multiple pairings.
    Does this fit the bill?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Dave,
      If your story meets the requirements stated in the post above, including a romance with an HEA or HFN, then we’d be happy to take a look at it.
      Thanks,
      Stephanie Doig
      Assistant Editor, Carina Press

  30. Hello! I was wondering if retellings would be considered. I have been playing with the idea of a Phantom of the Opera retelling, possibly containing M/F/M scenes. Would this, or other fairy-tale retellings work?
    Thank you!

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Leigh,

      We’re willing to consider retellings, as long as the story arc and heat level are appropriate for the line.

      Thanks,
      Stephanie Doig
      Associate Editor, Carina Press

  31. Roxanne DeRenzis says:

    I submitted my story on October 20, 2017 and have been waiting for a response. It still says active.

  32. Lisa Mandina says:

    When you say not published before, does that include on Wattpad? I’ve been posting my short story as I finish each chapter, although I don’t think anyone other than a couple friends I’ve wanted to share it with have even looked at it. If I take it down from there, can I submit it for this contest? Thanks!

    1. Angela James says:

      Lisa, first I should clarify this isn’t a contest. It’s a call for submissions, ongoing.

      In this case, by previously published, we mean previously available for sale/purchase. We’ll accept Wattpad submissions.

  33. Jennifer Nichole says:

    I have a paranormal erotic romance I’m polishing at the moment that I had previously posted on a writing site in short parts… I have re-written it completely as well as re-named. It was a soft romance and is now an erotic one… would that be acceptable submission for this line?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Jennifer,

      Yes, by previously published here we mean available for sale; we’ll accept manuscripts that have been posted on writing sites.

      Thank you,
      Stephanie Doig
      Associate Editor, Carina Press

      1. Jennifer Nichole says:

        Thank you Stephanie, I’ll be submitting it then! Yay

  34. Reena says:

    I have started writ an erotic story for the first time . The characters make love in the first chapter . Can you explain for an erotica do they need to have sex in every chapter or just showing the sexual tension and then two three sex scenes will do for the dirty bits competition?

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Reena,
      First I want to clarify; this is an ongoing call for submissions and not a contest or competition.

      We do not have specific guidelines for timing/number of sex scenes. Instead, we ask that submissions for The Dirty Bits contain a romance, with a HEA or HFN, and as they are intended to be erotic romances, the sex and sexual tension should be woven into the romance and a key focus of the stories. Stories with minimal sexual tension, and minimal on-page sex will not be considered the right fit for this particular line.

      Thank you,
      Stephanie

  35. DK says:

    Hi! I have a story that fits the above guidelines, but an early draft was originally posted on a fanfic site. It’s been re-written since then, but anyone reading both stories would recognize one as an early draft of the other. I saw your answers above re: Wattpad and writing sites, but this felt different enough that I wanted to check.

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi there,

      Please just mention in your query letter that the book has a history with Wattpad, and that it has been re-written.

      Thanks,
      Stephanie

  36. JL says:

    Hi!
    I’ve been writing romance for several years now but only recently decided to take a step forward towards being published. I’m interested in the idea you are proposing of fast pace HEA or HFN stories that are erotic. One of my ideas is to look at the journey (erotic and romantic) of one or two high school seniors moving on to college in a series. However, you say you don’t do young adults, would this count as such? I believe this would be more urban/contemporary but I’d like to start with when they are late teens and make it into a series. Thank you in advance for your response!

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, JL,

      High school age is a bit young; we’d be looking for characters who are 18 or older.

      Thanks,
      Stephanie Doig
      Associate Editor, Carina Press

  37. Kelly says:

    Hi,
    I’m a new author and ready to submit my book but I’m having problems with the two paragraph description. I’m probably overthinking things but I want to make sure I do it correctly.
    Are you look for an overall outline of the book including the ending and character background or just a general summary of everything that happens?
    Thank you so much!

    1. Stephanie Doig says:

      Hi, Kelly,

      Since there is no synopsis, it’s helpful if you include a (brief) description of the ending, but we don’t need synopsis-level detail.

      Thanks,
      Stephanie Doig
      Associate Editor, Carina Press


Comments are closed.

Categories


Wait! Before You Leave…

Subscribe to the Carina Press Newsletter & Save 20% on Your Next Order!


Sign up to receive newsletters, special offers and other promotional emails from Carina Press* to get the inside scoop on all our new books!
Plus, you'll get an exclusive coupon to save 20% on your next purchase.

*Harlequin Enterprises ULC (Carina Press) is located at Bay Adelaide Centre, East Tower, 22 Adelaide Street West, 41st Floor, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5H 4E3 and sends informational and promotional emails on behalf of itself and Harlequin Digital Sales Corporation. Subscribers can unsubscribe at any time.