Friday, January 14, 2011

A Publisher in our Interrogation Room

 I hope everyone knows what it means to be chuffed because that is how I feel right now, I am pleased to introduce to you Astraea Press, a new publishing house with a refreshing twist. Owner and Editor in Chief Stephanie Taylor has agreed to sit down and be interrogated.
Some of these questions are from you, while the rest was concocted by my devious mind. Feel free to check the blog and their stunning covers out.

  1. N.R. Williams - I would like to know from Astraea Press what form of publishing they are considering? Traditional hard/paperback copies, e-books or audio books? One or all three?
Astraea Press - All three!  Eventually.  Right now, we're focused on our launch and getting our name out there.  Once we get our initial titles under our belt, we'll be uploading for POD, and looking into audio.
  1. the1940mysterywriter - how do you intend to market your ebooks and your writers? Granted that marketing budgets are endangered species throughout publishing, but do you have a plan for overcoming that ongoing problem and assisting their writers' sales figures?
At Astraea we offer a personalized marketing plan for our authors based on their location to aide their efforts.  Our marketing director, Alice, is already hard at work on these things.  We also plan to market in every avenue possible.  We'll be placing ads on websites and in appropriate magazines.  We're hard at work with social media, getting our name and our author's name out there.  Without our authors, we wouldn't be much of a press!
3.      Kimber Leszczuk.I would love to know what inspired them to put the ROMANCE back into romance stories? EVERYTHING lately seems to be all about sex - I think there is something to be said for someone who can convey emotion and a well told love story without it. Kudos to them for doing it!! What is their inspiration and motivation behind it?
Astraea Press - To be honest, I came up with the idea because my own books fall into a black hole.  I don't write erotica, I don't write inspirational.  I fall somewhere in between and tend to keep my sex scenes behind closed doors.  But I love playing up on the sensuality and the actual emotions of a relationship.  So after I published my first book, I thought…I bet there are other writers out there who don't want to compete with erotica (and lose) and need a house who offers only clean romance.  The outpouring of support for our venture has been astounding and I'm so excited that I took a leap of faith and opened Astraea Press with Jane.
  1. Joanna - How many books a month should we expect to come out of Astraea Press?  
Astraea Press - We're aiming for ten a month.  We're one contract away from our goal for February!
  1. Joanna - How do you maintain the balance between professionalism and making the authors feel like part of the Astraea family?   
Astraea Press - Hmmm…that's tricky.  To me, professionalism IS making someone feel like family. That's how I do business.  I'm chatty, I love to help and I want others to succeed.  You've got a question?  Ask me.  If an author and I were to disagree on edits, we can talk about it.  But as an author myself, I understand how emotions can play a part in the publishing of a book, and I'm here to make sure things are objective and we put the best product out there.  Ultimately, Astraea has the final say in a product, but I won't "pull rank" unless absolutely necessary.  I like to talk about things first!
  1. Joanna - Do you have any cool contests or pitches coming up? 
Astraea Press - We're currently open to submissions and we have a pitch scheduled with Sweeter Romantic Notions later this month.
  1. Joanna - What would you say to people who still do not believe in ePublishing?  
Astraea Press - Epublishing is the same as any other technological advance.  Just like computers, TV, cell phones, anything that advances, I'm actually surprised that books took so long!  E-readers, smart phones and such are all going to replace paper books because it’s more economical and easier to access.  Like it or not, it's happening and it better to embrace it.  ;o)
  1. Joanna - Apart for explicit scenes, what else would be a major turn off for editors at Astraea Press? 
Astraea Press - Language is a turn off, stories that revolve around cheating and weak GMC (goal, motivation and conflict).  

Even better yet Astraea Press is open to submissions right now! They have also challenged me to do one thing - write a story with the doors firmly shut, it is a challenge but I look at it as an opportunity to grow as a writer. Ms Taylor will be in and out all day feel free to say hi, ask any other questions and visit their blog.


  1. Hi, Joanna, Hi, Stephanie,

    What a great interview. Stephanie, your company sounds like a great place to start. Congratulations and good luck.

    I wish I wrote romance because I certainly would be querying your publishing house.

    Joanna fantastic interview.


  2. awesome interview Joanna! Thanks for introducing us to Astrea Press!

  3. What a treat. Great post today, ladies.

  4. Enjoyed this interview! Gasping at the 10 a month new titles with a new press. Whew!

  5. Great interview. I'm excited. I'm looking forward to reading some Astrea books!

  6. Wow. Nice interview. You've both got me wishing my current WIP is a romance. Maybe the next one. *claps*

  7. My belief that 2011 is chock full of opportunities is proving true. Happy New year Joanna and thanks for this interview!

  8. Hi, Joanna, Hi, Stephanie,

    What a great interview.

    Thanks for introducing us to Astrea Press, Joanna. I'm looking forward to reading some Astrea books!

  9. Ooooh I like the GMC model!!! Thank you so much Joanna St James for a great interrogation room feature with Astrea Press!! Wonderful!! It's great to know not just what type of genre Astrea press are looking for but also the specifics of what Astrea press expects from potential submissions. Thank you! Take care

  10. Great post, Joanna! Writing 'sweet' is challenging (for me, anyway!), but I'll certainly go and check Astrea Press's website out! Happy New Year!

  11. Very nice interview. I look forward to hearing more about Astrea Press in the future and reading some of your books!

  12. Another great interview Jo, thanks so much for organising these! ;)

    And welcome back - I've not seen you for a while - hope your holiday break was a good one! x

  13. Hello everyone! Sorry for the late response, my day got away with me! For those of you who said you couldn't submit because your current WIP wasn't romance, WRONG! We're open to ALL genres, not just romance. The list of what we don't want is on our website ( We've signed a mystery, inspirational, paranormal, lots of different genres! So send me those manuscripts!

    Thanks to Joanna for having me here today and I'm happy to report we've signed ELEVEN titles, so we met our goal for February! YAY! We have beautiful covers by Elaina Lee (who also does freelance work if anyone needs her!) and we're generating a ton of interest!

    Friend me on facebook

    And "like" our page:

    Thanks for all the warm welcomes and comments! I'm looking forward to our awesome launch!

  14. Hmm, after I wrote my YA romance, I thought a lot about romance in general and another book idea. You've got me thinking again....

  15. Thanks for a great interview -- contained everything we need to know about this press!

  16. So glad you brought this wonderful new publishing house to our attention, Joanna.

  17. Joanna: Thanks so much for posting this information! This is exactly the kind of publisher I've been looking for! (and the kind of romances I want to read!)

    And thank you for asking about my daughter Jen on my "tilted world" post (and for not making fun of my photograph! LOL). Jen is hanging in there. Some days she feels down, but mostly she's up. She knows she won't walk in this life, and we've both adjusted to this over the years. But we have a caring family, good friends, and all of the necessities of life--and we live in a relatively "safe" place. Life is good. So are wonderful bloggers like you! Take care. Have a great weekend!

  18. Hey Joanna, sorry I haven't been by but I just finished reading your last 2 posts i'd missed - don't like to miss your mwahwaha posts. I've been too busy in my little corner of the blogoverse - that's what you get for making your 2011 resolution - Write first, blog later. Ahem. Hardly. Anyhoo, I loved this interview with the A-word press. They sound like my kind of people - shutting the door on all that erotica. Love it. I'm definitely checking them out. Lovely interview.

    The Pub Party is still raging over my way. I've found time to be out buying books too. One of my fave book stores has lowered their prices heaps trying to compete with all the cheapie book stores getting around. All the more book prizes for me to give away in this series.

    So, lady in Houston-land, hope all goes well for you and I hope picks you for a prize in the series. First draw tomorrow. Don't forget to come back for Clarissa Draper this Wed your time. I'm the first to publish her picture on the web. How cool is that!

    Au revoir for now. Just in case you're missing France.

    Denise :)

  19. Joanna, feel free to put my Publication Party in the 'You don't want to miss...' in your sidebar. It runs until mid Feb.I'm not usually so forward, but needs must...

  20. Fantastic interview! How cool to have a new publisher on your blog, answering questions. Thanks, Joanna!

  21. Joanna, thanks for these interviews. They're great.

  22. Thanks for the introduction, Joanna. Great interview!

  23. Best of wishes to Astrea Press and their future success!


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