I recently decided to organise another BookFunnel promotion, this time for short stories of under 10,000 words. I stipulated no erotica, and the specific word count (by the way, if you’d like to join, the link is here). Many other BookFunnel promos also ban erotica, and therefore promo organisers have to be on the ball, so to speak, when dodgy novels try to slip in unnoticed.

Anyway, it wasn’t long before one cover with a bare male chest made its way into the promo. This particular chest was devoid of the usual secondary sexual characteristic you associate with a male past puberty – to be precise… hair. Indeed, this chest was waxed to perfection, glistened with some kind of gunk, and sported various tattoos along with six-pack abdominal musculature below. Quite incredible biceps bulged on either arm. One thing marred this perfect vision of masculinity… he had forgotten to do the top of his trousers up. Apparently, although I didn’t linger on the blurb for too long, he was definitely not shy in his dealings with the opposite sex.

However, before I had got around to removing the book from the promo, this hairless hunk had started off some kind of chain reaction, as though one bare chest had sent out silent signals to other bare chests to gather en masse. My promo was full of raging testosterone, rippling biceps, and combat trousers artfully undone at the top to save any passing female too much trouble.

I had never seen so many books with hairless male chests on the covers. To deviate slightly, what is wrong with a nice hairy chest? I have been known to catch sight of several on beaches, and I must say, the visions are not altogether unpleasant.

But hey, back to the point. I soon received emails from affronted members of my promo who had followed the rules. They complained that their readers would take umbrage at the sight of so many naked chests. I had to agree, and reassured them that the offending torsos would soon be relegated to the promo bin.

I had to edit the promo’s description. Next to ‘no erotica’ I now had to put ‘no bare chests’. Thankfully the flow of waxed masculinity soon dried up and eventually ceased.

My promo hasn’t started yet. It runs from April 18th to May 30th. Maybe you’ll add your short story? If you do… please… no bare male chests!