Well, according to Psychology Today it is the difference lies with intention. The art piece intending to capture the beauty of the form is erotica and the piece intended to invoke sexual response is porn. I call Bull shit.
I believe all the Mom’s buying hot novels on amazon would agree with me. The intention of erotica is to make you sweat, squirm and pant in need right along with the heroine; and hopefully when you close the book, seek out your significant other.
Anne Rice herself posed this very question on Amazon and the answers were enlightening. The word “Porn” seems to conjure images of men in trench coats soliciting un-showered prostitutes. Whereas the word “erotica” alludes to fine ladies dallying with the pool boy. Come on ladies, man up call it what it is.
With titles like Cum for Bigfoot (Virginia Wade) and All Filled Up (Dominique Angel) there is little doubt the purpose of these books is to get us off. Or at least get us started. Which leads this author, who's see her share of both, to believe there isn't any difference.
So why do we hide our mom porn behind a veil of erotica? Because no teenage boy wants to stumble on his mom’s equivalent of playboy and know that’s what it is, for one. Two, censorship will allow erotica in public, but hide the porn forcing us to use code words so Amazon will still sell it to us.
In conclusion, bring on the double secret agent speak and litterary brown paper wrappers, as long as it gets the job done, does it matter what we call it?