IT'S TIME TO GET TOGETHER AND CHAT! JUNE 17
Ready to have our first book club chat on the new JWH Members Only Facebook Page? Well, you don't have long to wait. I'll be there Saturday, June 17, 8-9:30pm ET, ready to talk about Truly Helpless, the newest release, as well as anything else you want to talk to me or ask about. Since it's a party, you know there will be virtual alcohol, sexy servers and giveaways. I hope you'll come out and join me. The only thing you need to do to be there is Join the Group, if you haven't already. Go to the page above and click the Join button. Once the admin approves, you'll get an immediate notification in your FB notification file to say you are accepted, and then the group shows up in your group list. You're all set! Go back to the page (where it will now show your status as "Joined"), and you'll be able to join in all the fun. I'd recommend doing that at least a day or a few hours before the event, since Joining the event right as it's starting may result in delays. That's because the admins will already be busy supervising the party! Once you've Joined, if you want more details about the Event prior to it happening, there's an Event page HERE.
Even if you can't make this event, I hope you'll join the group regardless, because it's fast becoming a great community, just as the old forum was. We had a takeover by the fabulous Kristen Ashley earlier in the month that was tremendous fun, and we hope to have more favorite author guests coming in the future. We also had a month long giveaway where everyone who posted honest reviews for Truly Helpless were eligible to win great prizes. Many of the games, discussions and visual eye-candy you all loved on the old forum have also taken up residence on the new site. It's a great place to come and find other lovers of the BDSM erotic romance genre. What's not to love? It's the best genre ever!
VIRTUAL SIGNING - $9.99 PRINT BOOKS
Have you checked out the eligible list of print books now available for a great $9.99 sale price? These are "vintage" editions of my books, meaning they have almost the same content as the current versions, but carry the older covers and publisher information before the rights were returned to me and Story Witch Press for re-release. Oh, and "almost the same content" simply means the OCD author had to do some tweaking of language and catch a few more typos before the self-pub release - she can't help herself, lol. Click HERE to see what's available and find out how to place your order.
DAUGHTERS OF ARIANNE RETURN! TAKE THE PLUNGE...AT A SALE PRICE!
As I mentioned in the past couple newsletters, Penguin Random House returned the rights to seven of my books several months ago. The three Daughters of Arianne series books (Mermaid's Kiss, Witch's Beauty and Mermaid's Ransom); the two Arcane Shot series books (Something About Witches and In the Company of Witches), and two of my Vampire Queen series books, Vampire Instinct and Bound by the Vampire Queen.
We tackled the cleanup/conversion of the Daughters of Arianne series first, so I'm happy to report we have not only a re-release date, but a special promotion price for all three of them. They will go up for pre-order June 30 with a release date of July 31. Why a full month? Because during the preorder period, I want to give you a great deal on these backlist titles. Until release date, these full length books will be available at our ebook novella price of $2.99 each on Amazon, Kobo and iBooks (Nook does not offer us a preorder option). You can get the full trilogy for $9! After release date, they'll return to the regular full length $4.99 price, so keep your eye on my FB, Twitter or other media platforms for when these books go up for sale. If you'd like to get acquainted (or re-acquainted) with these three books, including the brand new beautiful covers, click HERE. Yes, nothing could equal the beautiful Don Sipley artwork of the original editions, but I'm very pleased with the graphic design work my husband did on the new covers and feel he captured the spirit of these three stories wonderfully. We had a lot of spirited discussions about the details, but fortunately minimal blood was spilled, lol. Interestingly, my favorite cover of the new three is A Witch's Beauty. It was also my favorite cover of the Don Sipley versions.
A nice side effect of re-reading the books for the conversion is that I'm personally falling in love with Jonah and Anna, Mina and David, and Lex and Dante all over again, and all the more wanting you to have that experience with these couples. Are you saying, "Joey wrote books about mermaids and angels? When did this happen?" You're not alone in that, lol. The series was never one of my bestsellers, though the reviews and accolades for it were excellent. For instance, when Mermaid's Kiss first released in 2008, Wild on Books said, "I am in awe of this book...A Mermaid's Kiss remains with me, and I imagine it will for a long time to come." And The Romance Studio added, "The sheer magnitude of magic in this story weaves a spell around and draws them in. A beautifully written novel that's reminiscent of an adult fairy tale...Extremely thought-provoking. An outstanding book from an outstanding author." You can find more review feedback for these three books on their series page. Under each book page, click the "1 comment" notation on the bottom, and it will expand out to show you a summary of reviews and awards. You can also click on each book page and scroll down below the excerpts to find the same (though you may find yourself tempted to read the excerpt! wink).
So why didn't they do well? Who knows? If I had to guess, I'd say it's as simple as readers liking vampire stories more than ones about mermaids and angels. It takes more to draw them into a story about the latter. Fair enough - I have the same issue in my reading choices, so I can hardly throw stones (grin). What I hope this price might do, however, is tempt you to give them a try. Don't just go on my say-so. When these books came out, I had readers who tried them merely because they liked my writing style (not necessarily mermaids and angels). They came back with pleased and glowing reactions to the stories. For some of those readers, this actually became their favorite series to date. Here's a quote I saved from one of them at the time A Mermaid's Kiss came out: "I started reading your work with the vampire books and LOVED them. When I found out I had to wait for the next one because of Mermaid's Kiss I was VERY UNHAPPY… So, now I wanted to apologise and eat a little crow. I loved the first book (A Mermaid's Kiss) so much I bought me one and one for a friend for Christmas." This kind of feedback confirms something I've often felt about writing. A good story is a good story, regardless of character type, genre or trope. If you try them, I hope you'll agree the trip was worthwhile.
Tie-Ins with other series: And I'm not above a little bribery, lol. Did you love Marguerite's story in Ice Queen/Mirror of My Soul? Well, the hero of Book 2 of the series, A Witch's Beauty, is her twin brother David, who died young and reappears in this book as a fully grown up (and very hot) angel. And the third book in the trilogy, A Mermaid's Ransom, has a half-vampire/half Dark One hero, which necessitates a key appearance by Lyssa and Jacob of the Vampire Queen series.
Some interesting background on the books: The first book, Mermaid's Kiss, was my attempt at doing a "sensual romance" that would broaden my audience into the mainstream. Never fear - there's plenty Dominant/submissive undercurrent in Jonah and Anna's relationship (you know I can't resist the compulsion), but it's less overt. However, the story went into the difficult emotional waters I most prefer to write for my love stories, and the next two books went right back to the fully deep end of the pool. I think that's when I realized that there are plenty of people who write great sensual romance. Dark, lush BDSM romance with a happily-ever-after after great personal cost is my preferred writing zone.
Keep a particular eye on the FB, GoodReads and Twitter platforms throughout July when these books are available for pre-order, because I'll be reminiscing about the writing of these stories, posting inspirational pictures and quotes, and generally sharing my love of these characters and their world.
NOTE: Currently the only versions of these books available are the previous publisher's remaining print stock, which should be reasonably priced. Beware any third-party sellers charging outrageous prices. We'll have new print versions available at or slightly before the July 31 release date.
TRULY HELPLESS FOLLOW UP
Marius and Regina continue to win hearts, and thank you SO much for posting your glowing reviews about them. Here were a couple of my favorites this month (though I love all of them!): "I normally devour Ms. Hill's books, and expected to complete Truly Helpless in my usual 24 hour reading a delicious new book marathon. I couldn't do that with this one. This book was too much of everything. I had to stop periodically, get some distance, digest what I'd read, then come back later and go further. I finally finished it this morning. I loved this story. Of all the Nature of Desire series, this one is my favorite. I don't think I'd ever wanted a character to succeed as much as Marius. I love the broken, damaged characters beyond all reasoning, and he stole my heart totally." Another reader wrote, "When you trust an author to lead you down a path, there's a lot of trust there. When you buy a book about a character that you previously thought you should hate, there's a lot of trust in that author. I've read Miss Joey for years and I want to say that I've always trusted her; it might come tentatively, but I trust her to get me where she wants us to go. It me a while to get to her Nature of Desire series, but I wish I hadn't waited so long."
Thank you all! And if you haven't read Regina and Marius's story yet, remember you can find blurb, chapter one, and buy links HERE. And don't forget this Saturday's bookclub chat about the story!
VAMPIRE'S SOUL - Cai and Rand's story, the next Vampire Queen series book, has a first draft and I'm well along on the first round edit. Our vampire and wolf-shifter servant pair who made their first appearance in Night's Templar and a subsequent guest visit in Medusa's Heart will appear in VAMPIRE'S SOUL in the fall. At this point we're pretty sure release date will be SEPTEMBER 30. And that means a full chapter one teaser available on the website sometime in July! Don't forget Cai and Rand now have their own Pinterest page for concept shots of their characters and other story features. Click here. I've also been getting in the habit of posting random snippets and insights about the book at my FB page and the Members Only page, so if you're following either of those, I'll keep feeding you good stuff about this pair.
KNIGHT NOSTALGIA - I'm still working on Knight Nostalgia in the spare moments, though admittedly the work to get those seven rights-reverted books back out asap is cutting into that time. However, I still have my eye on having this book out as close to year end as possible. Knight Nostalgia is a three-novella anthology of new Knights of the Board Room series "revisits". Here's the summary on what the three novellas will be about:
Conqueror's Fantasy - many people have talked about wanting to get deeper into the head of Matt Kensington, and spend more time with him and Savannah. Years ago, in a character interview, Matt mentioned that he was going to take Savannah to a private island resort which was dedicated to BDSM lifestylers. On their last night there, he brings to life a specific, long-held fantasy of Savannah's.
Girls' Day Out - In Hostile Takeover, Ben made a serious misstep. While I can't remember where it was proposed, somewhere along the line it was suggested he make amends by taking all the K&A women out for a shopping trip. This will be what happened during that trip.
The Card Game - Some of you have pointed out that Dana and Rachel never had their "board room" initiation as Savannah and Cass did. In The Card Game, the men decide to hold a late night poker game around the table, with two very attractive centerpieces who have to do whatever the man who wins each winning hand commands. With some very interesting results...
The one drawback to getting this anthology out as close to the end of the year as possible is that my annual free vignette might have to be delayed, with the anthology coming out near Christmas instead. But I hope these stories will help win your forgiveness for that!
CONTACTING ME - Remember, you can find me online through my website email contact link or email me directly at storywitch@PROTECTED. You can also leave a question for me under my Author Profile on GoodReads. I'm on Facebook under Joey W. Hill, and @JoeyWHill on Twitter. My Pinterest boards related to the books are here: https://www.pinterest.com/jwhill23/.
Thank you all so much for your support of my work!
DIDN'T GET A RESPONSE? It seems those darn online filters are becoming more and more aggressive. And don't get me started on the many ways Facebook plays tricks with my messages, lol. But responding to my readers, and doing so in a very timely manner (within 24-48 hours), is extremely important to me. So if you have sent a communication to me in any of the mediums I've mentioned - direct email, FB, GoodReads or Twitter - and have not received a response, a technical glitch has occurred. Either your communication did not get through to me, or my response did not reach you. If you suspect that's the case, use one of the alternative communication methods to send me a "Hey, Joey, I sent you a note through email (or FB, or a tweet, etc). Did you get it?" message, and we'll make sure we sort it out. I will never intentionally ignore my readers!
While we still have the option through my website to subscribe to the newsletter, in an effort to become ever more aggressive about spam, many email hosts/filters now bounce it. Regrettably, there's not a lot we can do on this side if the newsletter is hitting an email filter that is bouncing it without notifying either one of us. However, we do have some things you can try that seem to have worked for folks:
FIRST - make sure the newsletter email is part of your contact list: "newsletter@PROTECTED."
SECOND - Check whatever filters you do have for spam and the like and see what methods are available to you to ensure an email like this gets through. My newsletters have a plethora of links in them to make it easy for you to find the things I'm talking about, but the flip side of that is it can get the newsletter tagged pretty quickly as spam.
THIRD - Contact me at newsletter@PROTECTED and ask to be unsubscribed. Once we confirm with you that has been done, rather than us sending you an invitation (which can bounce for the aforementioned reasons), we have you go in to the website newsletter link and subscribe yourself - here's the link to that. If it works, you'll get an automatic invitation to confirm, and then, fingers crossed, you should be set.
FOURTH - If none of this works or all of it is just too frustrating and you want to say "screw it!" (and I can hardly blame you, lol), then just make sure you've liked my FB page or are following me on Twitter. This is because EVERY MONTH I will post the latest newsletter link on both of those, to make sure it reaches the widest number of people possible! It's the same link monthly, so if you want, just put http://storywitch.com/cgi-bin/dada/mail.cgi/archive/storywitchnews/newest/ as one of your Favorites. You can click on it anytime to see if an update has been posted. I post a new one every 30-45 days, give or take a few days.
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