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Musa Publishing announced yesterday that they were closing shop. The impact for me is minor, as I had only one short story with them, my m/m fantasy short "And if I offered thee a bargain". The Musa edition will be going away on 28 February, but there'll be a new edition at some point.

In the meantime, all Musa titles are 80% off until they shutter the website on 28 February. I am in two minds about this, because it damages the reprint market for authors. But if there were any titles from Musa that caught your eye, go and get them now, because even if they reappear from another publisher, it may be a while.
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I've been interviewed at the Prism Book Alliance blog, and along with that, there's a prize draw for a copy of "And if I offered thee a bargain" and a $10 Musa voucher, plus 30% off the book at Musa's website today.

http://www.prismbookalliance.com/2014/02/jules-jones-stops-by-to-talk-with-adriana/

The interview is a little incoherent, what with having had a migraine at the time. :-/
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You might recall that two of my short stories were pulled from Kobo/WHSmith during the moral panic about porn late last year. Kobo had simply blocked *everything* distributed by SmashWords, including titles from small presses that use SmashWords as a distributor. Musa were caught by this, and as a result have been busy getting their books directly onto Kobo. Some didn't go through properly the first time, but my fantasy short And If I Offered Thee A Bargain is finally back up as of today:
http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/and-if-i-offered-thee-a-bargain-1

Naturally, the self-published erotica story went back up a lot quicker. :-/
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Reviews are good. Five star reviews are even better. And sometimes a review makes you very, very happy indeed. Like this one.

The Romance Review
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My short story "And if I offered thee a bargain" was released today by Musa Publishing. It's available direct from their website, and from the usual third party retailers. Direct links that I've collected so far:

Musa Publishing
All Romance eBooks
Amazon UK
Amazon US


And if I offered thee a bargain cover art - gay romance novel

One night of your life for seven years of love. Would you pay the price?


Jack never dreamed that a reluctant trip back to his home town would thrust him into the world of the sidhe. He finds that the legends are true, but the sidhe have changed. They have a new bargain to offer the mortals who bring them fresh stories and share new technologies.

But is the price of this new bargain worth it?



Excerpt

ISBN: 978-1-61937-427-0
Length: 5,500 words
Price: $0.99
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I have made a list of the people with correct answers, and asked random.org for a random number. :-) The winner is Carole Lake, but everyone who answered gave me at least one of the alternative names for the sidhe used in the blurb, i.e. the Fair Folk or the Good People. And thanks for the comments some of you sent. The story is out tomorrow -- it's only a short story, but it's the first release I've had in four years, so I am very pleased to see it coming out.
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A reminder that the draw for a copy of the new release ends tonight. Details from the previous post:

If you'd like the chance to win a copy, go over to the book's page on Musa's website at http://musapublishing.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=9&products_id=373 and email me with one of the alternative names for the sidhe you'll find there. Competition closes at midnight UK time next Wednesday evening, and I'll draw a name at random. My email address is jules.jones@gmail.com
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Right, chaps and chapesses, the new story is out on Friday next week, which means it's time for the traditional competition to entice you to read the blurb. If you'd like the chance to win a copy, go over to the book's page on Musa's website at http://musapublishing.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=9&products_id=373 and email me with one of the alternative names for the sidhe you'll find there. Competition closes at midnight UK time next Wednesday evening, and I'll draw a name at random. My email address is jules.jones@gmail.com
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Excellent. :-) The page for my short story And if I offered thee a bargain" has gone live on the Musa Publishing website. Not sure when it went live, as I've been too busy with edits to keep poking the site. At the moment it's pre-orders only -- it's on sale from 7 September. I presume pre-ordering does actually work, because I can see on the internal royalties database that someone has done so.

I suppose this means I need to think of a competition to promote it. :^) Also, I need to dig out the colour printer and run off some bookmarks. Good thing it's a bank holiday weekend.
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Took longer than it should have, because the throat infection is taking its own sweet time about leaving, and I've been feverish yesterday and part of today. On the other hand, at least I had several days in hand to do them, because I got the revisions for checking a full three weeks ahead of release day. I know this might not sound like much to those of you at print-first sf houses, but the weird timescales of erotic romance epublishers mean that there have been times in the past when I've had to do a final round of checking galleys a day or two before release. Three weeks is <Yorkshire>luxury</Yorkshire>.

I'm sure I'm not going to get any sympathy from desperance and autopope, mind. :-) After all, I only had 5.5 kwords to edit, and all on one title. When I have the edits for three novels land on me at once, I might get some sympathy...
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The main edits on If I offered thee a bargain have gone through, and late last night I was sent the draft cover art. The latter is interesting -- it is utterly wrong if considered as a literal representation of what's in the story (white-haired and bare-chested elf when it should be black hair and teeshirt, cliff beach scene instead of drumlin). It's also spot-on in giving an *impression* of what the story's about. I thought about it for at least 3 seconds before saying yes. :-) Because the cover's job is to get the prospective purchaser to fondle the merchandise, and what I've been given does that job well.

I need to check whether I'm allowed to post the draft in public, so not putting it up tonight - maybe later this week.

In other writing news, slightly fitful progress on Taxman. Monday 305 words, Wednesday 323 words, Saturday 333 words, and on Sunday I cracked the 30k mark with 526 words to take it to 30,269 in total.

ETA: final version has just been posted, but I'm too tired now to upload it to my site so I can link to it. Will try to do it tomorrow.
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Had my first round edits on And if I offered thee a bargain sent to me on Tuesday, but didn't start doing anything with them until last night, courtesy of assorted medical annoyances. Just sent my comments back to my editor, after much pondering, There weren't that many edits, but a lot of them were to do with things that affected the voice of the story. Not so much making it sound like not-me, because they didn't, but changing the feel of who it was narrated by and how. There's only one of those that I'd dig my heels in over, though.

Still not comfortable using Word 2007 (there was some minor aggravation trying to find the "save as" option), but I can use it if I have to. I think. With any luck I won't get an email back saying "I can't see your changes!"
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Had a relapse on the RSI at work yesterday - not bad, but I had to step away from the computer for a couple of hours, and did nothing more than check my email when I got home.

Bad timing, because the email included one from my editor telling me I've got the first round of edits on Bargain to look through. Fortunately we've got some time in hand, but I need to step away from the keyboard *now*, even though I had a long break from the keyboard at work today, and I suspect will be in the same position for the next couple of days.
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I need to provide a tagline and blurb for the short story coming out in September, and this publisher doesn't do in-house editing of the blurb. So I could do with a second opinion on mine. I'd like comments from the romance fans in particular, because while this has a love story, it does not have a happy ending - I don't want something that will mislead romance fans into thinking they're getting an HEA or HFN.

One night of your life for seven years of love. But would you pay the price?

A modern man meets one of the sidhe and finds that legends are true, but the sidhe have changed. They have a new bargain to offer mortals who bring them fresh stories. There will be no coming forth from the green hillside to find that decades have gone by in the real world, the old friends and loves... old. But there is still a price to pay to have a fairy lover.


(5,500 words, speculative fiction, and yes there's a reason why I'm calling it specfic rather than fantasy.)
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I don't think I've mentioned this yet -- when I logged into Musa's manuscript tracking database last week to upload the nicely formatted Word doc version of the file for And If I Offered Thee a Bargain, I found that the release date had been updated. It's now scheduled for release in September, which amongst other things made it rather more urgent that I get on with doing the cover-art worksheet.

No, I have still not learned to like dealing with the cover art worksheet, or indeed any of the other prerelease marketing stuff. It is, alas, something that has to be done, though. I have wrestled with the tagline and the blurb, and have produced something that I think is acceptable first draft standard. I'm not so convinced about the cover art worksheet, but it's a 5.5 K word story -- there's a limit to what I can say about it beyond "it's set in the drumlin fields around Strangford Lough, the heroes are one human and one of the sidhe, and they're both wearing jeans and T-shirt." Oh, and there's a brief physical description of elf boy's pointy ears and cat eyes.

Have I mentioned recently that I'm not a very visual writer?
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Well, re-release of something that's been out of print for a while. Just been given access to my account on Musa's manuscript management database, which has a proposed release date in November for And if I offered thee a bargain. This is just a short story, but given that my last release was in August 2008, I'll be glad to have something coming out this year.

I've had to stop work on writing Taxman because of the RSI (Dragon is not really suitable for writing fiction), but I'm now slowly building up my time on the keyboard, so hoping to get back to that in the next couple of weeks. Definitely not going to have the draft of that finished any time soon, alas, but still hoping to have a finished draft before year's end. On the other hand, if [livejournal.com profile] predatrix feels up to working on the Ipswich novelette, that means that I don't have to do the typing on that...
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Received an email late last night to say that Musa's Erato imprint has accepted "And if I offered thee a bargain". :-) With the inevitable editorial caveats, of course... That could be fun, as I don't disagree with the reason for the editing request, but will need to be careful that the necessary fiddling won't throw off other aspects of the story.

Reprint of a 5.5 kword short story, as far as I know to be published as a standalone. No idea at this stage when it'll be released
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Just sent off "And if I offered thee a bargain". This could prove interesting. I've submitted it specifically as speculative fiction, but given that most of my credits are in erotic romance, the ending could come as a nasty shock to anyone who assumes that this one is as well.
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I used my website blurb as the basis of the synopsis after all, although it needed a bit added. Draft so far - any thoughts?

A modern man meets one of the sidhe, and finds that legends are true, but the sidhe have changed. They have a new bargain to offer mortals who bring them fresh stories - nobody will leave their domain after a single night to find that years have passed in the mundane world. But there is still a price, one he discovers too late -- once you do leave their domain, you can never go back, no matter what or who you've had to leave behind.

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