Sex sells, but how to sell sex?

Mona Darling
 aka Dead Cow Girl

Throbbing cocks, wet pussies, and hungry mouths. These are the words most of us skim for when reading books about sex.

Every time I tell someone that I just published a book about the female sexual experience, these are the words they think of, and they are certain I have an instant best seller on my hands. After all, sex sells.

But the reality of marketing a book in a marginalized niche like sex and erotica, that doesn’t yet have its own virtual shelf, is proving quite difficult. There are limits as to where you can market sex and erotica. Even now that it’s finding more common ground, erotica is still often banished to the area behind the virtual counter. I’ve been turned away from book reviewers because “They don’t do erotica.”

is not romance and it’s not erotica, although it has aspects of both. It also
has stories of sexual trauma and stories from gay as well as straight women, so
those barriers are crossed as well.  In the Internet age, where everything
needs to fall into a drop down box category, Glitter doesn’t.

Every time
I list it somewhere, I have to select a topic from those boxes, and because the
topic is sexual, I often have to choose erotica, even though it is not. The
people who are looking to read erotica are looking to escape. They are not
looking to be reminded that for many women, sexual desire is shaped by trauma
and shame. Yet, because there is a some erotica in it, I’m often steered away
from posting it under self help, where I feel it would more truly fit.
know there is a market for Glitter. I know women want to read it. I know there
are women who NEED to read it. These stories are not polished and
sensationalized. They are not escapism. They are relatable and eye opening.
They were compiled to show women that they are not alone in their desires. But
how to reach those women?
spent twenty years in the sex industry, and I know there is someone for
everything, even those things that make you scratch your head and wonder. It is
hard not to get frustrated with marketing any book, let alone a book that falls
outside of those drop down boxes.
Yet every time I do, I have a wonderfully
supportive circle of friends who remind me that Glitter was brought together to
help women feel less alone in their desires. They remind me that I am bucking
the status quo, and that is never easy, and that real change takes time. I pick
myself up, dust myself off, and once again say, ‘No. Actually, it’s not
erotica. Glitter is real stories of sexual desire from real women. Some of them
are erotic, but many are not. They are the real stories that define us as


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Glitter is about the female sexual experience, which contrary to what the media would have you believe, is not all bubble baths and chick flicks.

Women are constantly judged as slutty, or uptight, but the reality is somewhere in between those two, and sometimes, nowhere near either. We have secret shames and private desires and we all feel we are the only one.

We are good church-going girls with a fondness for the paddle, PTA moms who hire escorts, feminists who like to bottom in the bedroom, slutty virgins, bi-curious married laddies and women with a past. We are gay, straight, and undecided.
We are all over the map, and we are amazing.

Mona Darling aka Dead Cow Girl, spent close to twenty years as an A-list professional dominatrix before becoming a D-list mommy blogger. After spending many years traveling the world being told that she is fabulous, she now spends her days being told she doesn’t drive fast enough by her three-year-old son.

Dead Cow Girl was a nickname she received in grade school after a humiliating morning involving a mobile butcher and a school bus. She chose to use that name to reclaim the part of her that spent much of her childhood red-faced with shame, embarrassed for her unique childhood. She also likes it because it is readily available on nearly every social media platform.

She writes, sporadically, about food, sex and toddler-related mayhem at