There’s been a slight change of plans – today’s blogger was going to be Rob Graham, but he’s out of town this weekend and wouldn’t have been around to answer your comments, so Delilah Marvelle has graciously offered to switch spots with him.

Delilah is a fellow member of the Hearts Through History Romance Writers group (I originally joined the RWA with a historical manuscript that is now gathering dust.) Her first book, Mistress of Pleasure, was released in September 2008 by Zebra books, and her second Lord of Pleasure is out next month. Unfortunately, the financial crisis has hit her publisher and Delilah’s become an unfortunate victim … so when I read about what was happening over on the Hearts through History loop, I emailed her and asked her to blog here.

Please welcome Delilah Marvelle

When I was in high school, I had a dream. I was going to be the next Stephen King. Heh. Yeah. Stay with me. Please. I knew my ideas were fabulous and I knew all it would take is for an editor to look at it and they would offer me up the moon and the stars and best of all, a contract. I had my girlfriends read everything I wrote. And they kept telling me, “This is fabulous! It’s SO funny! Hilarious!” Seeing it really wasn’t supposed to BE funny, I immediately changed course realizing I actually had a better handle on being funny than scary. I also figured adding a romance into it would even make it better since that is what I loved to read.

I then entered college as an English major. I was going to be teacher and write during the summers. Even then I was a smart girl who knew I wasn’t going to make jack and that I needed a job to support the “creative” one. Throughout all of college I wrote historical romances. One right after another. And kept submitting. And submitting. And submitting. And kept getting rejected and rejected and rejected. In the meantime, I got married. I had two kids. I joined RWA. I got critique partners. I did honed and honed and honed the crap out of my writing. And kept writing and getting rejected. I eventually racked up over 200 rejections and had written over 40 books in those 11 years of trying to get published.

When I finally sold my first historical romance, MISTRESS OF PLEASURE, and my second book, LORD OF PLEASURE, I was beside myself. It didn’t feel real. To FINALLY arrive at a destination I had been traveling toward for 11 long years seemed like a mirage. Which fortunately, I quickly snapped out of. Because after all, most of my friends are all published and unpublished writers and the stories they all have told me throughout the years made me realize I had to fight with fists up for myself every step of the way. I knew publishers did little to no promotion for their authors, so I spearheaded my own promo, ready to be more than just an author. And even though I was budgeting very well and spending countless hours networking and promoting on websites and blogs, doing tons for free, I still ended up spending $7,000 on my first book. Which was way more than my advance. But hey, every business starts in the red. Right?

Then the reviews started coming in about my series set in 1830 London England about a school that educates men on the topic of love and seduction. People loved it! Wow. It got nominated for awards. Wow. Readers are e-mailing me raving. Wow. Readers from France, Austria, Poland, South Africa and from all over the U.S and the world.. Wow. It just kept getting better and better. I was beginning to feel as if every penny I spent was all worth it (even though my family and I weren’t going on any vacations and were eating out of cans). Because all that mattered was that my publisher loved me and my readers loved my series.

Come contract time, I’m ready for whatever they wanna throw at me. Or so I thought. Mistress of Pleasure, though completely sold out and unavailable anywhere (unless it’s a used copy, some going for a ridiculous amount of $40.00), hadn’t done as well as my publisher had hoped. So without waiting for the second book to come out to see if the series was even worth saving, I get a rejection from my own editor citing lack of sales.

I have to say this rejection felt more personal than any of the other two hundred and some rejections I’d received. Because it was no longer “Your book isn’t good enough” it became “Your sales aren’t good enough.” Since when is an author supposed to be a market guru AND a fabulous writer? Eck.

I love this series. The men in it make me laugh and it broke my heart to think that my readers will never get a chance to read about Lord Brayton, my glorious male virgin. The only alpha virgin I’ve ever written about. Then I realized something, why I am letting a publisher decide what is worth holding on to? Shouldn’t that be a reader’s job?

Ah. Herein lies the purpose of my post. I am challenging everyone, be they readers or writers to help me do something that’s never been done before. Save a series from a death sentence given by a publisher. Can it be done? Who knows. But I eat challenges for breakfast and I hope you do to. Please join me in saving my series. Come August 4th, tell everyone you know (yes, even your 72 year old grandfather) to buy the book, Lord of Pleasure. In doing so, you’ll have a chance to win one of three $50 Visa Gift Cards. How? Check out my website for details at

That said, thank you for all the support and love everyone has already shown me by allowing me to blog about this. Feel free to post and repost this to everyone under the moon and the stars. To all you readers out there, thank you for supporting us writers. To all you writers out there, don’t ever give up on your writing. The moment you do, you give up on yourself. Which is why I’m not giving up on my series.

Cheers and much love,
Delilah Marvelle


Delilah has graciously offered one lucky reader a copy of Mistress of Pleasure – which has sold out and is unavailable anywhere else unless you want to buy a used copy. So leave your comments today for a chance to win Mistress of Pleasure. Then order her Lord of Pleasure (and don’t forget to enter her contest for a $50 gift certificate when you do) and help support the authors who are being squeezed out in this economic downturn.

Delilah Marvelle’s Call to Action

37 thoughts on “Delilah Marvelle’s Call to Action

  • July 10, 2009 at 4:36 am

    I enjoyed you post today. I hope we can get lots of buyers for your book and save the series. I've sent emails to all of my reading friends about it, I hope that will help.

  • July 10, 2009 at 4:42 am

    Great post. And I'll definitely be out there buying this book once it hits stands. I'll also be putting this up on my blog and doing my best to get people to be more aware. Thanks coming today and posting.

  • July 10, 2009 at 5:01 am

    Hi Deborah,

    Great post and I hope the 'buy me' campaign will help save this series! I know I'll be at the bookstore to get my copy of LOP during release week!

  • July 10, 2009 at 5:20 am

    Great post. I must go over there at once after this.
    it sounds like a great series so it should be saved

  • July 10, 2009 at 5:32 am

    Wow, that really sucks. This reminds me of when the cancel tv shows and I never get the ending!!!

  • July 10, 2009 at 5:49 am

    Great post!

  • July 10, 2009 at 5:51 am

    I would love to get my hands on this book. I will be looking for it and of course I will take part in your endevour. Thanks for the fill in I know Leah appreciated it and so do I…. thanks again Shell

  • July 10, 2009 at 5:55 am

    Did you know that says you can get it on July 28? Is the date different on purpose or will we still have to wait?

  • July 10, 2009 at 6:02 am

    Hello Delilah,

    I've heard about your plight on a lot of blogs here recently. I hope things turn around for you and your series. It sounds like a series worth saving. Have a great day.

  • July 10, 2009 at 7:30 am

    Delilah I feel your pain. I had a five book series, and then the publisher got bought out by another house … before my series even had a chance (only two books released) they dropped me. 🙁


  • July 10, 2009 at 7:37 am

    Your series sounds wonderful so hopefully we can all get the word out about it.

  • July 10, 2009 at 7:56 am

    Ill say it now like i said it before your work rocks! I absolutly adore it and you know ill be buying when it hits the stores next month deff be buying two copies so i dont have to share mine with my mom lol you deff have my support sweet lady

  • July 10, 2009 at 8:40 am

    Oh dear, this is just too bad. But didn't you say in your post that your books sold out? Doesn't that count?

    I just checked amazon over here in Germany and thee are two copies available….one from the US for about 15 dollars and another one for about 18 dollars.

    I do wish you all the best in your writing and career and can onl aplaud you in your endeavours. Don't give up!!!


  • July 10, 2009 at 9:32 am

    Hi Delilah,
    I loved "Mistress of Pleasure" and hope the series continues and we'll get to read Brayton's story. Brayton is definitely a favorite of mine.

    janie1215 AT excite DOT com

  • July 10, 2009 at 9:33 am

    This still just amazes me.. there are only 12 copies to be had between eBay, Amazon and B&N. plan on 22 to 45.00. Still its considered not to have sold well enough? Just crazy. Anybody that wants one I would suggest not waiting, some of those copies aren't in the US.
    I really hope they see the light. Please don't give up if they don't, even if another publisher isn't smart enough to grab this series… in that case check out Abintra Press.. E. Howdershelt has been self publishing for years and does extremely well .. 31 books on fictionwise & most top sellers..I bet you could do that easy.. you all already have to do the promotions yourself.
    Wishing you extreme luck..
    waiting for the 28th 🙂
    ioki_jo at hotmail dot com

  • July 10, 2009 at 9:55 am

    My dearest Nancy G,
    Thank you so much for your support!!! I definitely wouldn't be pushing a book or a series I didn't think worth saving and appreciate any efforts. Muah!

    My dearest LadyVampire2U,
    I feel like all I'll be saying in my responses is THANK YOU, LOL. So thank you! Word of mouth is free and the only thing I can afford right now, LOL

    My dearest Karen H in NC,
    Yay! Thank you!!!

    My dearest Blodeuedd,
    Thanks for checking out my website and giving my series a chance.

    My dearest Natasha A,
    You are spot on about the whole canceling of TV shows early. I've had three of my favorite shows cancalled on me early. And it sucks, LOL.

    My dearest Minna,
    Thank you for stopping by!

    My dearest HockeyVampires,
    Thank you so much for your support!!! This gal is beside herself from all the love. And yes, is shipping early because Lord of Pleasure is already in the warehouses ready to go. Although the release date is August 4th, it depends on the distributor, as some will have it in stock and ship early.

    My dearest housemouse88,
    I'm so glad I'm popping up everywhere, LOL. And I appreciate the good vibes. Thank you.

    My dearest tetewa,
    Thanks for stopping by and reading my posting!!!

    My dearest Amy,
    THAT sucks. I am so, so, sorry. Part of what I am trying to do is voice what is happening to authors. Because it happens a lot more than people realize. Mostly because authors don't really discuss this aspect of the business as it's considered to be "bad behavior." It's not about bashing, but about educating and helping others understand how this industry works and taking pride in your work and believing that something can be done even when everyone tells you it can't. Thanks for the hugs.

    My dearest Joder,
    Thank you for the support!!! Word of mouth is all I have left to bet on. Grin.

    My dearest SiNn,
    Muah and muah and muah!!! Thank you for not only your amazing enthusiasm toward my writing but for your support. Mauh!

    My dearest Valerie,
    Selling out isn't enough for some publishers. Everyone has a different view as to what defines success. And yes, it's ridiculous what Mistress of Pleasure is being sold for. On amazon, you can't find a copy below $21 and the most is going for $40. It isn't even signed, for heaven's sake!! LoL People are freaks, what can I say. Thank you for your well wishes. I am pressing it tightly against my heart.

    Cheers and much love to all of you,
    Delilah Marvelle

  • July 10, 2009 at 10:00 am

    LOL, Delilah, I wouldn't call them freaks, I'd call them devoted fans. 😉 They must really love you to be willing to pay above the retail price.

  • July 10, 2009 at 10:05 am

    Snort. Devoted fans sound so much nicer, doesn't it??

  • July 10, 2009 at 11:22 am

    Hi Delilah!

    I had ordered and just received Mistress of Pleasure from and can't wait to read it! You have my aloha and support!

    All the best to you!

    I'm delilah, too!


  • July 10, 2009 at 11:56 am

    Great post. I'll talk to people to help keep this series alive.
    lexeetoste at

  • July 10, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    Delilah, I'm adding Lord of Pleasure to my next book order! Thanks so much for sharing your story of perseverance–it's such a eloquent reminder to strive on for our dreams! May yours keep coming true!

    Don't enter me, please–Mistress of Pleasure's already on my keeper shelf 🙂

  • July 10, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    My dearest Delilah,
    It is so rare to find someone of that name, I get giddy meeting other Delilahs. Thank you for the support and the aloha!!!

    My dearest Tigger9,
    Thanks for not only posting but for helping. You rock!

  • July 10, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    My dearest Flchen1,
    THANK YOU. Dreams are definitely hard to follow sometimes, but its the support of others that make them come true. I feel blessed to have so many responding to my writing, my series and my plight. May each and every one of your dreams come true, too. Kisses.

  • July 10, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    Leah, you've sung the Win a Book praises to Delilah, right? We'd be glad to help out in this. No worries.

    (PS, Delilah, we should talk. Your fate is one of the biggest reasons I self-pubbed!)

  • July 10, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    Great post. I hope your campaign saves the series!

  • July 10, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    Hello, Happy Birthday bash to you…it was so lucky & helpful that Delilah Marvelle could help out at the last minute today. Thanks for all the great info.

    Michelle B.

  • July 10, 2009 at 6:57 pm

    My dearest Susan,
    E-mail me offline anytime! I would love to talk 😀

    My dearest Estella,
    Thank you!!!

  • July 10, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    I'm so sad by this. You will always have my support. I so can't believe this, this is one awesome book I read and a huge lost. So I'll do anything for you Delilah!

  • July 10, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Thanks for the post. Made me think.

  • July 10, 2009 at 8:14 pm

    i just don't get it. A book sells out in the best selling genre and the publishers decide not to continue with great selling books. It just doesn't make sense to me. Go with what sells!

    Best of luck in finding a better publisher!

  • July 10, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    My dearest Caffey,
    Thank you. So very, very much. It means a lot to me. It is people like you that allow me to believe I can plow through this.

    My dearest Llehn,
    This is exactly why I am voicing my experience with the industry. To make everyone think about what is happening behind the scenes. If readers don't support their authors, those authors will eventually diappear.

    My dearest Kytaira,
    LOL. I don't get it either. But I will take your luck and run with it, hoping for the best. It's all about moving forward from here on out.

  • July 10, 2009 at 8:58 pm

    Holding for positive results for you, and thanks for stepping in to help celebrate Leah's b-day.

    You are a writer, promoter, and friend extraordinaire.

  • July 10, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    A very thought-provoking post, Delilah. It's sad that your publisher would put a stop to a series midway through. The fact that you're trying to keep a positive outlook on the situation by blogging to try and keep the series going is great. The books sound really interesting and I look forward to reading them.

    Good luck in continuing the series!

  • July 11, 2009 at 1:10 am

    Best wishes for the continuation of the series. Will have to go to the web page and check this out.

  • July 14, 2009 at 4:47 am

    I do hope the series continues, I will encourage all my friends to look for it as soon as it comes out!

Comments are closed.