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Joey Hill: Soul Rest (Contest)
Tuesday, February 17th, 2015

Hello, my name is Joey W. Hill. I write BDSM erotic romance (paranormal and contemporary) and I’m a workaholic. I’m sure I’d hear a chorus of ‘hi Joey’s’ from the audience, except all the other workaholics are…working. They have no time to spare for a support group. So I’m sharing this with you all because writing a post for a blog is, well, part of the job of being a writer (and it gives me a work-related excuse to socialize with wonderful people like yourself).  If you want to damage my calm, all you have to do is tell me to relax, do nothing or sit around. I desperately need advice on how to wean myself away from being a structured schedule junkie. Can you help me?  I really have tried. Here are some of my recent efforts:

1) I took a trip to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Technically, it was a research trip for my latest book, Soul Rest, where I visited the district with the highest crime rate so I could interview a police captain there. I also drove around the side streets to see if I could find someone in the middle of a drug deal. No such luck. Can you believe that? You’d think drug dealers would be considerate enough to be a little more public about their transactions so curious romance authors could ask them questions, but apparently not.

jhCropCarousel

I also made my husband take endless pictures of the carousel at The Mall in Louisiana. It’s the second largest carousel in the world. Since carousels as a rule aren’t that big, that’s not saying a lot, but it was quite beautiful. One of the key scenes in the book happens there. Part of that scene takes place on the beautiful roan/blood bay mix horse you see next to the rabbit in this photo. One picture can’t do the carousel justice. The colors and detail of the whole thing were gorgeous and it all appeared to be hand painted. There also were so many different animals on it. The one on the other side of the horse is a cat with a fish in his mouth. But I digress…

2) I attended a funeral with my husband. There was live singing at the service and a potluck dinner at the church afterward, so it counts as dinner and a show. Right?

3) I do try to read for pleasure. They’re usually the same books I’ve read before, old keeper shelf favorites, because I can’t read any new books without going into editor mode and trying to “work” while I read. The good news is the books are awesome re-reads: the In Death series by J.D. Robb, Once in a Blue Moon by Penelope Williamson, The Black Lyon by Jude Devereaux and some of my favorite 80s/90s Nora Roberts titles (Dream and Chesapeake Bay series, Midnight Bayou, Hidden Riches).

4) The one good thing about workaholism is an exercise regimen can become your structured “break time”. So I walk dogs, treadmill and do strength training while watching favorite movies and TV series. Again, I’m watching ones I’ve seen before, but I firmly believe if I was on a deserted island (that somehow had electricity so I could plug in a DVD player), I’d never need anything to watch other than the Firefly series (Firefly fans probably caught my “Jayne-ism” up there, ‘damage my calm’).  Or the Life series with Damian Lewis. Best written TV stories ever. Oh, and Armageddon or Serenity for the fave movies.

So I can see from the way you’re looking at one another, you think I’m in real trouble. Have any good ideas about how to unhitch yourself from a demanding job and endless schedule structure to smell the roses? I’m all ears. Okay, well… I’m all ears while I’m multi-tasking – answering emails, outlining the next book and brushing my Golden Retriever – but I’m listening, I promise… (cough, cough – hairball – Goldens have LOTS of fur).

GIVEAWAY – for the suggestion I like best, I’m giving away an e-book from my current titles and a $15 gift certificate to Amazon, B&N or ARe – reader’s choice on both of those! Post your ideas below, or any comments or questions you have for me.

Now, even if you don’t win, I have a FREE EXCERPT to share with you. As noted above, my next release is Soul Rest, which is about a Baton Rouge police sergeant and a news blog reporter. It’s the seventh book in my Knights of the Board Room series, but all these books can standalone, because each focuses on a different couple. Here’s a little snippet from when Leland finds Celeste hovering around his officers at a crime scene (with a link to a full Chapter One excerpt below it!):

jhSoulRest-Flower600x900

He kept his scowl in place. “From here forward, you don’t talk to my officers, and you don’t bring them coffee.”

“There’s no law against a reporter attempting to talk to your officers or giving them coffee. They do a tough job. I’m showing appreciation as a Baton Rouge citizen.”

He pursed his lips, nodded. Then he bent so he spoke into her ear. He bet that little tender spot beneath it, so close to his lips, would taste nice. “I see you doing it again, I will put you over my knee and blister your ass.”

He drew back enough to meet her startled gaze. Shock was followed by indignation, a trace of anger, but it was the little ripple of arousal, the quick indrawn breath, that made him want to do exactly as he’d threatened.

“Are we clear, Celeste?” He kept his eyes on hers, his tone steady.

She pressed her lips together, said nothing. He wondered what he would do if she said “Yes sir.” Probably nurse a hard-on for the rest of the morning.

He forced himself to straighten, to ease back on a couple different levels. “You should have taken my sweatshirt to stay warm this morning. I bet that car of yours doesn’t heat worth shit.”

She blinked in surprise again. He hadn’t intended to say something stupidly intimate like that, but it was out before he could call it back. Her flush deepened. “It does well enough,” she said. “Having my underwear would have helped, but they were stolen. I expect I should report that to local law enforcement.”

“Items like that are rarely recovered. The perp has usually taken them for personal reasons, not to fence.”

Her brow lifted, then her gaze swept his lower torso. “So he might be wearing them?”

She was not going to make him laugh, though it was a near thing. He’d called out one of his uniforms for merely taking her coffee. Now he was flirting with her. Really fine damn example he was.

*~*~*~*

FREE chapter one excerpt and a blurb about the book – http://www.storywitch.com/book-kbr-sr. Release date March 15 – keep your eye out for pre-order links soon!

Web: www.storywitch.com   FB: www.facebook.com/JoeyWHillAuthor  Twitter: @JoeyWHill

50 comments to “Joey Hill: Soul Rest (Contest)”

  1. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    1
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:39 am · Link

    Good morning all! We have a bit of a winter wonderland here in Charlotte this morning – nice ice storm last night. I’ll be popping in and out throughout the day, so if you have any questions or comments that require an answer, I’ll be sure to respond. Hope everyone has a lovely Tuesday!



  2. Amber
    Comment
    2
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:40 am · Link

    I’m in school, and when I find myself having to do x, y and z everyday, I consciously take out a day to do nothing structured; now I don’t mean nothing, just nothing work-related. Take a step back and realize how little all of the running around means in the grand scheme of things. Practice mindfulness and appreciate what’s immediately around you, what’s going on in the moment, and try not to think of the future during that time. I play a game, I go out to the movies, I don’t let myself do anything related to college. Sometimes, I take several days to do that. Afterward, I feel refreshed.

    Make an effort to separate ‘work’ from ‘you’ for a few days and see how you feel!… but definitely come back to us, we need you and your writing in our lives!



  3. Terry H
    Comment
    3
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:43 am · Link

    Sorry, no ideas on how to help you with being a workaholic, I’m just happy to be one of the lucky minions of your delicious little bread crumbs that you leave in your wake. I hate to take advantage of your affliction, but it seems to work so well for the rest of us.

    Really, really, really looking forward to this latest release in this series. Your writing is never formulamatic, but always seems fresh and draws me in right away. Thank you for that.



  4. jaycee
    Comment
    4
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:45 am · Link

    Leland.

    You are not helping my burgeoning “GoTo” list, Joey. You told me once it was already too big and to pare it down…

    Can not wait for another JWH adventure into perfection!



  5. Mandy Miller
    Comment
    5
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:48 am · Link

    I live near Jacksonville which is like living near a dozen small cities. When I get stressed, I pick a day and work everything to a stopping point, pick a part of town I haven’t explored and go. Thrift stores, boutiques, comic book stores… I just spend time with me. And if that doesn’t work, then I get my girlfriends together and we just go to “church” (Starbucks) and be us.



  6. Megan Michaels
    Comment
    6
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:53 am · Link

    I wish I had suggestions to help you, but I’m in the same boat! Lol. I’m hoping I’ll pick up on suggestions also. I’m so excited for this book! Congrats!



  7. Lee Roth
    Comment
    7
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:53 am · Link

    Oh please Joey!!! You will never stop being a workaholic, it’s in your DNA. Nice try! 😆 😈 🙄



  8. Snarky Mom Michelle
    Comment
    8
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:55 am · Link

    O-M-G!!! I am soooo excited that there is another “Knights of the Boardroom” series story coming out! I must admit that one of MY “comfort reads” is Samantha and her men from the first book, “BOARD RESOLUTION”.

    As for loosening the reins on the schedule? I would have suggested a pet, but it appears you already have one and that you’ve scheduled in grooming time [she says as she frantically tries to brush the hair from her three golden retrievers off her black pants, which having three golden retrievers you’d think she’d be smart enough NOT to wear black pants].

    How did I finally develop that ability to go from a white knuckled grip to a no-rope-burn grip? Better living through chemicals, babeeeeee! Seriously. I had an awesome doctor who realized that even two years after the birth of my twins, I was suffering from PPD / depression. Zoloft was a lifesaver. I still keep an eye on the clock and “the schedule” but at least now I’m not standing outside in a snowstorm cleaning the outsides of my windows. As for relaxing from your schedule? Basically PLANNING to do so means that you’re essentially just ADDING to the schedule.

    What about enlisting a friend’s help? Ask them to show up and drag you out to do something – anything – that you’d enjoy and would help you to relax a bit! If nothing else? Pet the dog. It’s supposed to lower blood pressure and stress 😉



  9. Donna A
    Comment
    9
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:57 am · Link

    I am so looking forward to Soul Rest. My time outs are taken at short intervals during the day. I sniff a flower, watch the birds on the bird feeder, pet the kitties, or take a bath. Chocolate in its many forms is good too.



  10. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    10
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:03 am · Link

    Amber, thank you for that thoughtful reply. I have a sick cat and this past weekend, she wanted to go out into the yard and sit in the sun, so I attached her lead to the bird bath and sat out there with her. As we enjoyed the sunshine together, I felt a great deal of what you’re saying in your note. That sense of what’s important and what’s not in the grand scheme of things. There’s a great line in the movie Lucy, something about humans are more concerned “with time than with being”, and it’s so true. My problem is remembering that, or carving out the space to help me remember that.

    Mandy, good thought. We just moved back to Charlotte from a small town, and my husband and I have talked about picking one new thing to do every couple of weeks so we can get to know the city better. We’ve done the Renaissance Festival and a friend and I did the Southern Christmas Show, but I also need to focus on some smaller things, like simply checking out a new park, museum or restaurant.

    Jaycee, just eliminate everything from the list but my books, and it’ll all be good (lol). Seriously, DON’T do that, because I’ve gotten some great recommendations for my own TBR list thanks to your extensive one!

    Terry, you’re a love as always, and of course you made me laugh re: my affliction serving a useful purpose. ;>

    Megan, hopefully we’ll both find some good ideas (lol), though so far the suggestions are very good ones.

    Lee, I have to try (grin). It’s like the whole 10 vanity pounds thing. As long as I’m always working to get them off, they don’t become 20, 30, 40, etc.



  11. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    11
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:15 am · Link

    Michelle, the JWH Connection fan forum is doing a mass re-read of the Knights of the Board Room series in preparation/celebration of Soul Rest’s release on 3/15, and they’re currently on Board Resolution. I have to admit, their discussions and comments have me sneaking a chapter in here and there, and it’s so lovely to re-visit Matt and Savannah. And of course I’m tremendously flattered to hear they are a comfort read for you. Have you found the free novella downloads revisiting the Knights on the fan forum? There’s one about Peter, Dana and Ben’s threesome (which Dana mentioned in Afterlife) called “The Proper Punishment” and a prequel with Ben and Celeste called “Retribution”. If you haven’t read those and they’d be of interest, you can find info about the forum/access here – http://www.storywitch.com/community. Hope you like Soul Rest just as much as the rest of the stories!

    You have three goldens and you HAVE black clothes? Lol – I have five animals (2 dogs, 3 cats) and I wear NO black clothes. I do have a few select pieces that stay in the closet until I go to conferences or on vacation. When that happens, they’re hastily pulled out of the closet and stuffed in a garment bag, and they’ll STILL have some hair on them when I retrieve them at my offsite destination. That’s okay, though. I wouldn’t trade a one of my four-foots for better fashion.

    I had to laugh when you said pet the dog for stress. Years ago, when we had ten, the largest number of dogs/cats we ever had (and while I loved every one of them, would not recommend that as a good idea), I said all the articles about pets lowering your stress level applied to humans who had one pet per human, not a 10:2 ratio!

    All that aside, I’m glad you were able to find a good solution for your PPD/depression. I have set up monthly dinners with friends and the like which does help. While in the scheme of things you’re right, it’s still adding to the schedule, when I make sure I don’t back out or cancel, I have a good time and it gives me a better attitude toward my writing. Nothing helps me to relax like proof that it helps my work! (lol)



  12. Teresa Noelle Roberts
    Comment
    12
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:16 am · Link

    When the weather permits, I take outdoor breaks. A short hike will clear my head, help me sort through whatever I’m obsessing over, and provide good exercise as well. I live just outside Boston, though, and we literally have six feet of snow on the ground and more falling right now. Yoga, cats, and a husband who occasionally drags me away from the computer…they save me.

    I cannot wait for this book!

    PS: I’m sorry you have a sick kitty–glad you and she were able to spend some quality time in the sun the other day.



  13. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    13
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:17 am · Link

    Donna, that’s also a good idea. Instead of taking it in one big leap, just do small bites of relaxation…I could make that work… And yes, chocolate always works (lol).



  14. titania
    Comment
    14
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:19 am · Link

    Yeah I got nothing especially since I so reap the benefits of your workaholic tendencies☺. I will say this though take at least 1 day a month to do absolutely nothing. I find if I do that for myself I can tackle anything.



  15. Dotty
    Comment
    15
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:19 am · Link

    Looking forward to a new Joey Book! Spent some time with Mermaids and Angels when I was bored with every book I started. Always hoping for more of that series:) Your books brighten my world, Thank you for all the great reads! It’s minus 10 here, so going to get dressed warm and head off to my work! Then home again to read more Joey:)



  16. Lora
    Comment
    16
      · February 17th, 2015 at 9:56 am · Link

    I tend to go full out with work until I hit the wall in exhaustion, which is not a particularly healthy or balanced way to go through life, so take this advice with a grain of salt. (preferably perched on the rim a large margarita)

    My favorite way to curb my workaholic tendencies is to learn something new. Yes, I know, that’s adding MORE, not less. But, I find that it breaks me out of my pattern and often allows me to shift around my workload – and my thinking – in new ways. Breaking up the routine is a good thing for me.

    What I should do is get better at saying no – and I’m trying – but there’s just so darned many interesting things to learn and to read and great people to meet… Oy. Balance is over-rated, right? 😉



  17. Sarah
    Comment
    17
      · February 17th, 2015 at 10:18 am · Link

    I see no one has suggested alcohol for your workaholic ways, so let me be the first. Red wine is great for you and I’m sure will boost creativity, in moderation of course 😉 I’m stoked for the new KOBR book! Beautiful cover too!



  18. Bobbi
    Comment
    18
      · February 17th, 2015 at 10:28 am · Link

    I am quite the opposite of you Joey, so as a “big picture, don’t sweat the details” person I’m not sure I understand how you are attached to a schedule. I’ll still try and give advice though, lol, cause for a chance to win an ebook of yours I can figure out what I’d tell my detail oriented friend if she asked me that.

    If a more balanced life is important, than fit it into your priorities.

    If that means scheduling more “impromptu” moments than work with the way you are wired. Don’t fight the way you are made, take it into account and work with it, cause if you’re stressing over what you’re scheduled to do when you sre interrupted to have an “impromptu” “smell the roses” moment, then you are not focused on the reason for the moment.

    The details I do put on a calendar/schedule are my priorities, so taking the moment to reflect on where on my list of life’s priorities something is makes me know whether to schedule it or not.

    Hopefully that all makes sense 😉



  19. Julissa
    Comment
    19
      · February 17th, 2015 at 10:40 am · Link

    Hello Joey I love your Vampire Queen series, I have not started the Boardroom one but can’t to do so.
    Will there be anymore books in the series after Taken by Vampire?



  20. Gail Siuba
    Comment
    20
      · February 17th, 2015 at 10:56 am · Link

    Joey, If you’re happy with your routine and it’s not adversely affecting your life, you must be doing something right. There’s a saying; If you want to get something done, ask a busy person. I used to be that person when I worked in the corporate world and I thrived on it. It made me happy. If you’re happy, that’s what it’s all about. I’ve always used books to decompress after a crazy day. My personal quiet time is when everyone is asleep but me, I’m reading with a cat or two in my lap. 😀



  21. Gail Siuba
    Comment
    21
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:05 am · Link

    BTW I loved the excerpt and I’ve enjoy all your books and look forward to reading more!



  22. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    22
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:33 am · Link

    Teresa, we had an ice storm, so it’s about an inch layer of sleet packed over everything right now. The dogs are having fun with it. Watching my black lab mix chase and “skate” after her ball this morning gave me a grin. Think if I could learn to live in the moment like my dogs, I’d have no issues at all. Thanks for the good wishes on our feline baby! And exercise helps me put things in perspective as well. I’ve told my husband that once you follow an exercise routine long enough, you actually crave that time, because your body knows what it needs and it helps mental and physical health. It’s reaching that point which can be a bit trying (lol). So glad you’re looking forward to Leland and Celeste. I’m so eager to share them with you!

    Titania, every once in awhile I recommit myself to the goal of having one day that’s completely work and computer free, usually Sunday. When I can stick with it, it always does me some good. Though like I said to Terry, I’m glad you enjoy the benefits of my workaholism (grin).

    Dotty! Hey girl, stay warm! I was just re-reading some of A Mermaid’s Kiss and A Witch’s Beauty the other night, trying to find a snippet to share at tonight’s FB party at Jodi Vaughn’s place (celebrating her release of By the Light of the Moon, the Rise of the Arkansas Werewolves series). Like you, I love the mermaids and angels and hope to do Clara and Marcellus’s story someday, even if I have to self-pub it. They deserve to have their love story as well (wink).



  23. Missy Taylor
    Comment
    23
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:35 am · Link

    When I am overwhelmed I take a still moment. A moment where I shut out the world however I can. If I’m at home everything is off or silenced. Close my eyes and I take deep breaths. Then to silence my head I begin counting my blessings. I count all the ways I am loved and by who. I count all those little things that I am fortunate that I have in my life. I count every single blessing and then when I am finished I usually feel better. Refreshed. Somehow counting blessings renews me. Makes me happy. (Also I read but you covered that :wink:) Now I believe if you do this often enough you’ll start wanting to embrace more of those little moments and stop and smell the roses. Embrace the joy that is to be had in your life outside of the workaholic schedule. Hope this helps you as it does me.

    Hey Baton Rouge is my neck of the woods! 8) Hope you enjoyed your visit. Also I did not realize that the carosel was the second largest in the world. Huh learned something new. Thanks. 😀

    Hoe you figure a way to decompress.



  24. Missy Taylor
    Comment
    24
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:38 am · Link

    Hope! As soon as I hit submit I thought I didn’t edit this! But it was too late and immediately I saw Hoe. Which made me laugh. Which makes me happy. So I am leaving my post in hopes it makes others laugh. But just to be clear… I am not calling you a hoe!



  25. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    25
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:41 am · Link

    Lora, sounds like you and me both share Sam Elliott’s philosophy from Roadhouse “Hell, I’ll get all the sleep I want when I’m dead.” Lol… I have found that new experiences improve my writing as well. A trip to a new place, a new skill…everything has the possibility of contributing to a story, and also breaks me out of any ruts of thinking I might be having toward it. On the saying no, I hear you on that. I’ve started to learn to do that in the past couple years. While, like most things in my life, it was because my writing started to suffer, that’s a case where the work can be a good catalyst for change.

    Sarah – your response made me laugh out loud. Your “tone” was just so practical and down to earth, I love it. Unfortunately, I am just a pitiful drinker. One glass of wine and I’m heavily buzzed and shortly thereafter, asleep. Two glasses and I’m drunk off my ass. I had two glasses of wine at a conference one year and unfortunately remember some stupid things I said, along the lines of the “I love you, man” kind of thing to readers who are probably very wary of me now (grin).

    Bobbi, that makes a great amount of sense, and is very logical. Pretty darn good answer for a laid back person! I’ve also learned to do that over the years. I’m never going to be anywhere close to laid back, but like was suggested earlier, I can embrace moments of being laid back, manageable blocks of time where the Type A stuff doesn’t get backed up and become combustible.

    As a side note, I think you and my husband could bond. It’s evidence of the Powers-That-Be sick sense of humor that they bring together a Type A workaholic and a very laid back, non-Type A personality in a marriage. I can just see those divine powers sitting up on a cloud and doing the “Hey y’all, watch how this turns out” thing.



  26. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    26
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:47 am · Link

    Julissa, so glad you’ve been enjoying the vampires! Yes, there are actually three more out there now. Two are novellas, one for the Invitation to Eden series (Elusive Hero) and one for the Mastered Box set (The Scientific Method). The Scientific Method is Brian and Debra’s story, and Elusive Hero is a whole new vampire-servant pairing, Kaela and Garron. Kaela is my very first ever “submissive’ vampire.

    The third book, Nightfall, is a book I co-authored with Desiree Holt, featuring a cowboy hero and a vampire heroine. Anyhow, you can find out more about those books on the series page on my website. Here’s the direct link – http://www.storywitch.com/series-vqs. When you click on each title, it will take you to the blurb and full excerpt. There are also buy links on those pages to help you find your preferred format.

    Now, as far as future books for the series, we’re far from done. The next book will be a male/male, about the Fae Lord Keldwyn and Lord Uthe of the Vampire Council (the one who was a Templar Knight). I intend to work on that one after I finish my current WIP (the next Naughty Bits project), and get Soul Rest out there. If all goes well, I’ll finish it before year end. Whenever you want to see what’s planned for my series, you can go to the In The Works page of my website and see what’s percolating – http://www.storywitch.com/in-the-works.

    Hope this helps, and thanks so much! Also hope you enjoy meeting the Knights of the Board Room (wink).



  27. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    27
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:54 am · Link

    Gail, I firmly believe happiness is reading with a cat in your lap and a dog or two at your feet (beaming). I have come to grips enough with my personality to be okay to a certain point with my level of “busy-ness”. But you correctly note it’s when you’re not entirely happy with that, that things need some adjustment. Somewhere along the way I lost the ability to relax, so I need to figure that out. Else I’m going to be one of those people who, when she finally does retire, is going to have a heart attack, thanks to the shock to the system of suddenly revving down so significantly.

    I can’t let that happen, if for no other reason than it will let my husband say, “See? I told you that healthy eating and exercise don’t really help!” (Memo to me – when having said heart attack, be sure to shoot husband so he can’t say I told you so…er, unless we wake up in the afterlife. Then that will be the first thing he says, along with “How’s the Wi-Fi in this place?” Lol…)



  28. Tatiana
    Comment
    28
      · February 17th, 2015 at 11:55 am · Link

    Hi Joey,
    I love your books and I can’t wait for Soul Rest to come out.

    A few years ago, when I was super busy with two young kids and school and life in general, my way of relaxing was to send my hubby out with the kids for a day, so that I could be by myself, and could do whatever I wanted 🙂 Most of the time it was reading 🙂 Just having peace and quiet and no little voices saying “Mommy mommy!” for a few hours did wonders for my (mental) well being. Not sure if that would work for you, since you are an author and writing is pretty solitary work, I understand 😉
    Night out with friends or a day at the beach (at least here in Cali 😉 ) can help, too.



  29. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    29
      · February 17th, 2015 at 12:00 pm · Link

    Missy, what a wonderful process. Sounds a bit like mixing meditation with prayer. I’ve always been kind of hopeless when it comes to the meditation stuff (which sucks, because I’m Wiccan, and energy-raising is really helped by meditation), but combining it with a focused action, like counting blessings, seems like a good strategy, and an uplifting one.

    Chuckle – I’m okay with being called a hoe, which can be a useful planting implement (versus the more derogatory ho – wink), though with my gardening ineptitude, sharp objects are usually used to cut cable lines or toes.

    I really enjoyed my visit to Baton Rouge. As I said, most carousels apparently aren’t that big, so saying it’s the second largest in the world plants expectations that aren’t fully met when you see it in person, size-wise. However, that issue is quickly overcome by how amazingly detailed and lovely it is. I also couldn’t find out who determined if it was the second largest in the world (grin) so that might be tourist propaganda. Regardless, I loved it and have many pictures of it. Also really liked visiting both capital buildings and the giant FYE you all have (I’m a movie/series junkie). We would have hit Parrain’s, since everyone told us that was the best place to eat in Baton Rouge, but we ran out of time.



  30. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    30
      · February 17th, 2015 at 12:01 pm · Link

    Oh, and Gail, thank you for that lovely compliment about my work! Hope you enjoy Soul Rest.



  31. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    31
      · February 17th, 2015 at 12:03 pm · Link

    Hey, Tatiana, and thank you for the kind words about my work, as well as the suggestion.

    My husband also works for home, so with him and the five animals here, some days are not very solitary (grin). But if I close the door to my office, they all know I need my creative time, usually when I’m writing a first draft. During that time period, an interruption can set me back 30 minutes, because it breaks me out of the “zone”. I’ve started carrying my Ipad with me when I go grocery shopping, so sometimes, I’ll just take 10 minutes in my car in a parking lot to be alone with myself and read through a favorite passage of an older book, and you’re right, having that moment totally alone does help recharge the system.



  32. Shirley Long
    Comment
    32
      · February 17th, 2015 at 12:40 pm · Link

    Hi Joey ~~ you gotta slow down before you have a stroke!!
    Seriously, if you don’t take time for yourself, everything is gonna come crashing down. Some say we are less productive when we try to do all things, for all people. Back when I was younger, worked all the time and had kids to raise, I thought I had to take care of everything. Clean house, big dinner every night, help kids with homework, and then be a sex goddess at bed time.
    Just imagine my surprise when, after a week of being sick with the flu, I realized that life did go on without me. So the house wasn’t as clean, so they ate sandwiches, so the kids didn’t make straight A’s and so the husband went without, they DID SURVIVE.
    So here’s what you need to do. Find a you a nice quiet place, sit down, alone, and take a deep breath. Then just be. Can you do that? Don’t think, don’t plot, don’t plan, just be. Doesn’t have to be for long, but the more you do it, the better you’ll feel. Or at least it worked for me. Now that I’m older and have much less to do, I still enjoy my quiet time. Sometimes I have a book, sometimes I just sit and watch the birds, squirrels, etc. And sometimes, I even close my eyes and think of absolutely nothing.
    Hope you’re able to take suggestions from all of us and combine them into something that works for you. God knows, you can not crash or get burned out. There’s too many of us out here who depend on your wonderful books to help us escape our real lives. So girlfriend, whatever you have to do, take care of you and everything will fall into place.



  33. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    33
      · February 17th, 2015 at 1:39 pm · Link

    Ah, you’re a sweetheart, Shirley. Thanks for saying that! And you’re absolutely right. Thinking the world depends upon us to revolve is irrational, to say the least. The problem most Type A’s have is that while we know the world does not depend on us to revolve, it will revolve BETTER if we’re handling things (grin).

    Seriously, I have learned to let things go that were just unrealistic to maintain. Cleanliness in my house boils down to the acts necessary to maintain basic standards of hygiene (and my standards on that may be lower than that of most third world countries – lol). And I have noticed that those stolen moments, like with my cat in the sunshine, are something I file away and treasure, so that I seek them out again more often than I would have done in the past. So there might be hope for me yet! ;>

    My husband is still waiting on that sex goddess thing to emerge for the first time, though, let alone re-emerge. It’s like the famous Friends episode with the gynecologist who told Rachel, “Have you ever thought, ‘if I ever have to see one more cup of coffee’…” The side effect of living with an erotic romance author!



  34. Tanchi
    Comment
    34
      · February 17th, 2015 at 2:19 pm · Link

    💡 💡 💡 💡
    Joey, as much as I adore, love, want and need your books, I need you to be around a bit more !! so you need to slow down. Read, by that I mean NEW series, or explore music or looong walks help, but you need to town it down a bit.
    the excerpt looks, good, can’t wait !!! I already done a re-read of the Knights after new year so I’m beyond ready ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗ ❗ 😯 😯
    have fun and good luck with this book! you will be hearing from me (in an absolutely non – stalker way) with a review and feedback !! 😆 😆 😆 💡 💡



  35. Rene'
    Comment
    35
      · February 17th, 2015 at 5:12 pm · Link

    Hello Joey,
    I love the expert of soul rest but to me you never ever write a bad book. You put so much effort and quality time in each master piece you put out. I’m loving the ‘re-reads of the KOB series which this is the first time I’ve read Matt and Savannah story, and loving it by the way. On how to relax I can only tell you what I one curl up on the couch with a book ( yours are the best) most of them are vampire ones. Two set on the porch with a cup of coffee and enjoy the weather or just listen to nature. Three go riding on a four wheeler. Four go out on the weekend to a nice dinner and movie. My husband and I do that every weekend. They are Times we do take a trip like you did but ours are to pigeon forge Tennessee just to get away from life. During the summer what is relaxing is to work in My flowers it gets your mind off work. But most of all do what make YOU HAPPY!! Eat health and taking care of yourself is key to a happy YOU!



  36. Rene'
    Comment
    36
      · February 17th, 2015 at 5:15 pm · Link

    Hello Joey,
    I love the expert of soul rest but to me you never ever write a bad book. You put so much effort and quality time in each master piece you put out. I’m loving the ‘re-reads of the KOB series which this is the first time I’ve read Matt and Savannah story, and loving it by the way. On how to relax I can only tell you what I one curl up on the couch with a book ( yours are the best) most of them are vampire ones. Two set on the porch with a cup of coffee and enjoy the weather or just listen to nature. Three go riding on a four wheeler. Four go out on the weekend to a nice dinner and movie. My husband and I do that every weekend. They are Times we do take a trip like you did but ours are to pigeon forge Tennessee just to get away from life. During the summer what is relaxing is to work in My flowers it gets your mind off work. But most of all do what make YOU HAPPY!! Eat health and taking care of yourself is key to a happy YOU! 🙂



  37. Gina DeWitt
    Comment
    37
      · February 17th, 2015 at 7:20 pm · Link

    Hi Joey!!!!!!
    I actually have zero suggestions because if you weren’t happy being a type A work-a-holic you wouldn’t do it 😉
    Besides I’ll bet your DH can distract you pretty well LOL



  38. Deanna
    Comment
    38
      · February 17th, 2015 at 7:35 pm · Link

    1. Red Wine
    2. Full Body Massage
    3. Reading
    4. Sex

    I am not going to say the order these should be in but all help to clear the mind and make you relax!!

    BTW- can’t wait for Soul Rest (reading your books lead to one of the others on my list 😉



  39. BeckyM
    Comment
    39
      · February 17th, 2015 at 7:42 pm · Link

    I work from home occasionally (like today – Huntersville checking in) and find I can’t relax or take breaks like I do when in the office. I always see something to do like loads of laundry 🙁 looking forward to Soul Rest!



  40. Boardroom Fan
    Comment
    40
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:05 pm · Link

    Hi Joey,
    As usual, I am late to the party. It looks like you have gotten some wonderful suggestions. As I love your writing, I am a bit conflicted about giving suggestions to keep you away from creating more work for all of us to enjoy. 😛
    How about a trip to the world’s largest carousel, since you have been to the second largest? 269 carousel animals, 182 chandeliers, over 20,000 lights, and hundreds of mannequin angels hanging from the ceiling: House on the Rock in Dodgeville, Wisconsin. I’ll drive. 😉 Here’s a pic: http://insulatedoverall.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/carrasel.jpg
    I am so excited that Soul Rest will soon be available! Best wishes for Release Day!!!



  41. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    41
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:33 pm · Link

    Tanchi, so happy to hear you’re psyched for Leland and Celeste’s story. You should go jump onto the fan forum and add your comments for the re-read. They’re having a blast over there (plus I’m doing a primo giveaway of swag and free book at the end of the reading of each book in the series during the re-read – wink). Thank you so much for being willing to do the review and give feedback. As always I’ll look forward to your honest appraisal or critique (whichever it deserves). Thanks also for the kind words for my good health. No worries, though – stress is what keeps me alive (lol).



  42. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    42
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:55 pm · Link

    Rene, that is a wonderful list. I particularly like sitting on the screened porch and enjoying nature. When the animals lure me out there, I always wonder why I don’t do it more often. If you and your husband haven’t seen it yet, Jupiter Ascending is a purely entertaining movie and Channing and Mila have lovely chemistry. We went to see it for our Valentine’s Day date (smile).

    Gina, you sound like a practical person, much like my mother was. She always reminded me of that joke about the patient that came to the doctor and said “Doctor, it hurts when I do this” and the doctor replied “Don’t do that, then!”. In short, we tend to make changes when we’re truly unhappy with our lives. I would like to learn to live more in the moment, but I can’t say I am not heaped with blessings in my crazy, busy life!

    Deanna, hey girl! Lol…I’d add chocolate to that list, too. Full body massage by David Tennant (he has those long-fingered, lovely hands), wine poured by Chris Hemsworth, a book read to me by Hugh Jackman…I’m starting to get into this. ;> So happy you all are excited about Soul Rest!

    Becky, you’re right. Since I write full time, I don’t really think of myself as an employee, deserving of breaks, vacation, etc – there’s no real detachment from the job, because I am the job, so to speak. Good point for me to ponder…hmmm.

    Boardroom Fan, WOW!! I love it. And while I’m still very fond of my Baton Rouge discovery, I’ve got to say that is a MUCH bigger carousel. I will put it on my to-be-seen-in-person list and will be happy to have your company for the drive.



  43. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    43
      · February 17th, 2015 at 8:57 pm · Link

    I have to log off for the night to do about 15 more pages of edits before I can watch Justified (Team Boyd and Ava here!), but I’ll check for more comments or questions tomorrow and also award the prize sometime tomorrow as well. Thanks so much for having me here today, Delilah, and it’s been lovely spending time with you all! Have a great night!



  44. ButtonsMom2003
    Comment
    44
      · February 18th, 2015 at 1:08 am · Link

    The only suggestion I can come up with is – retire! I was not really a type-A but my job meant a lot to me and I worked many extra hours gratis. A health scare helped me re-evaluate things and I ended up retiring a bit earlier than I planned.

    I don’t know if writers ever really retire. I imagine that writing is something you do because you love it and probably wouldn’t really want to retire from. It is important to make time for yourself, though.



  45. Mary Preston
    Comment
    45
      · February 18th, 2015 at 2:29 am · Link

    My life has settled down now, but there was a time when I actually scheduled in ME time. It was a life saver.



  46. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    46
      · February 18th, 2015 at 9:32 pm · Link

    ButtonsMom, I had to grin, because retired people are some of the busiest people I know. I don’t think most of them understand what retired is supposed to mean (lol). One of my neighbors understood it, however. When he retired and I asked him what he planned to do, he gave me a comic stare and barked “Absolutely nothing. That’s the point!” All that aside, I’m so glad you were able to retire and focus on better health and happiness. You’re right, writers probably don’t necessarily retire from writing until we feel we don’t have any more stories to tell, but there may be a point where we decide only to write for pleasure, instead of publication, and take an easier schedule at that point.

    Mary, absolutely. That’s about the only way I can do it when I do take the time to relax. I have to plan for it and schedule it. That part doesn’t bug me – actually works for my Type A personality (grin).



  47. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    47
      · February 18th, 2015 at 9:35 pm · Link

    Okay, it’s time to award my contest winner. This was REALLY tough, because honestly you all gave me some great ideas, and even though I could only choose one winner, I’ll be filing many of these away to give them a try. I’ve decided the ability to relax is going to have to be a multi-pronged strategy (wink).

    Anyhow, the answer that resonated with me the most (but again, all of them were just awesome) was the one from Missy Taylor. Actually it was the fact she called me a farming implement that tipped the scale, but nevertheless, she’s my winner! Congratulations, Missy! Shoot me a direct email at storywitch@storywitch.com and we’ll work out the details for your prize.

    Thank you all for the wonderfully insightful ideas and for spending time with me at Delilah’s. And thank you Delilah, for letting me take up space here for a couple days! Best wishes and many happy reads to you all.



  48. kim
    Comment
    48
      · February 18th, 2015 at 10:00 pm · Link

    I left a response on the goodreads page. I don’t see it here, so maybe they don’t relate?
    Anyway, I am a runner too. And I’m not talking the sneakers and sexy pants kind of running.
    I am a full time care giver and a housewife. Lucky the kids are all out on their own now, or I think I’d have to pass out every day.
    One day I found myself being snarky and short-tempered to everyone. It was so bad, I actually called myself out on it.
    I turned around and started a bath. Lit a few candles, used way to much bubbles. When I sat, the bubbles actually flew up in the air which, (girl that I am) made me laugh.
    I promised myself at least 20 minutes of quiet. No thinking about everything that needs doing, no thinking about what everyone needs from me.
    It was wonderful.
    So now it’s something that I try to do at least 2 times a week.
    It’s refreshing, reviving, and it makes me feel like a girl.
    Not to mention the break for the brain.
    Try it Joey. Give the bubbles a chance. Respect the bubbles 😆



  49. Joey W Hill
    Comment
    49
      · February 19th, 2015 at 8:57 pm · Link

    Kim, I love it. That is just awesome and lovely, with the right touch of humor. Respect the bubbles… Think that needs to be in a book somewhere! ;>



  50. Christi
    Comment
    50
      · February 20th, 2015 at 12:57 am · Link

    Hi Joey! I’m lucky enough to live by the ocean and find that sitting on the beach and watching/listening to the waves is very relaxing and stress-relieving. A great opportunity for some personal reflection, too. Sometimes I’ll have a beach fire to keep toasty warm, still need to bundle up at this time of year as it’s still quite chilly 🙂 I’m so looking forward to Soul Rest!