Apr 262018


Hello friends!  I’m so honored to be taking part in this special announcement today! It is actually a 2-for-1 announcement as we are not just announcing a special project but also revealing its gorgeous cover!! How exciting!!!  After reading and loving the recent anthologies about Jane Austen’s most iconic romantic hero and her bad boys, readers started to ask for more…well, it looks like Christina Boyd, editor of The Quill Collective series, heard you!

Another Anthology Coming from The Quill Ink

I am not a little proud to announce my third anthology in The Quill Collective series. Never heard of it? Aha! Likely because we have only coined the name when I decided to do another Austen-inspired anthology, and well, “series” would best indicate a number of books coming one after the other. You might better recognize the previous in the series as The Darcy Monologues and Dangerous to Know: Jane Austen’s Rakes & Gentlemen Rogues.

When asked about doing another anthology, readers frequently suggest another Darcy book or Elizabeth’s stories… But for me, it seemed to make sense, during this time of forwarding feminist sensibilities and given the verve of the present equality movements that the female perspective might be embraced amongst the Austen fandom—possibly beyond our polite borders. After all, Austen wrote of strong women who were ahead of their day.

Jane Austen’s novels evoke romantic imaginings of fastidious gentlemen and gently-bred ladies … Yet through her veiled wit, honest social commentary, and cleverly constructed prose in a style ahead of her day, Austen’s heroines manage to thwart strict mores—and even the debauchery of Regency England—to reach their fairytale endings. But have you never wondered about her other colorful characters like Mary Crawford, Hetty Bates, Elinor Tilney, Louisa Musgrove, et al.—and how they came to be? In Persuasion, Mrs. Croft says, “But I hate to hear you talking so, like a fine gentleman, and as if women were all fine ladies, instead of rational creatures. We none of us expect to be in smooth water all our days.” Those words have always struck me as terribly modern and I have wondered what Mrs. Croft might have been thinking of when she said those very words to her brother Captain Frederick Wentworth. I believe several of Jane Austen’s characters might have had feminist sensibilities, even if they yielded to the expectations of their sphere. It is our intent that in this collection of backstories or parallel tales off-stage of canon to remain true to the ladies we recognize in Austen’s great works—whilst stirring feminism in the hearts of some of these beloved characters. Thus, our title was born. Rational Creatures. Coming to you in October 2018. Stay tuned.

Once again, an extraordinary dream team of authors—I will refer to this group from here forward as #TheSweetSixteen—have entrusted their words to me. Previous anthology authors Karen M Cox,, J. Marie Croft, Amy D’ Orazio, Jenetta James, KaraLynne Mackrory, Lona Manning, Christina Morland, Beau North, Sophia Rose, Joana Starnes, Brooke West, and Caitlin Williams are joined by Elizabeth Adams, Nicole Clarkston, Jessie Lewis, and Anngela Schroeder. And if that isn’t enough for your “wow factor,” acclaimed author, Jane Austen scholar, and Guggenheim Fellow Devoney Looser is to write the foreword! I know, right? Wow! Just wow. #RationalCreatures indeed.

~ Book Description ~

But I hate to hear you talking so, like a fine gentleman, and as if women were all fine ladies, instead of rational creatures. We none of us expect to be in smooth water all our days.” —Persuasion

Jane Austen: True romantic or rational creature? Her novels transport us back to the Regency, a time when well-mannered gentlemen and finely-bred ladies fell in love as they danced at balls and rode in carriages. Yet her heroines, such as Elizabeth Bennet, Anne Elliot, and Elinor Dashwood, were no swooning, fainthearted damsels in distress. Austen’s novels have become timeless classics because of their biting wit, honest social commentary, and because she wrote of strong women who were ahead of their day. True to their principles and beliefs, they fought through hypocrisy and broke social boundaries to find their happily-ever-after.

In the third romance anthology of The Quill Collective series, sixteen celebrated Austenesque authors write the untold histories of Austen’s brave adventuresses, her shy maidens, her talkative spinsters, and her naughty matrons. Peek around the curtain and discover what made Lady Susan so wicked, Mary Crawford so capricious, and Hetty Bates so in need of Emma Woodhouse’s pity.

Rational Creatures is a collection of humorous, poignant, and engaging short stories set in Georgian England that complement and pay homage to Austen’s great works and great ladies who were, perhaps, the first feminists in an era that was not quite ready for feminism.

Make women rational creatures, and free citizens, and they will become good wives; —that is, if men do not neglect the duties of husbands and fathers.” —Mary Wollstonecraft

And without further ado….here is the big reveal!!!

Ahhh!!! I love it!!  Definitely a contrast from the more masculine covers of the other anthologies!

The woman’s face and expression are just perfect! She has gentle but intelligent eyes!  Very knowing.

I love that the ribbon motif from the two previous covers is continued!!  

Look at all the amazing authors in this collection! And the foreword by Devoney Looser!?! Woot woot!!

Which “rational creature” are you most looking forward to reading about?

What do you think, friends?


But wait! There’s more. Because this anthology is an homage to Jane Austen and her female characters, written by female authors, cover designed by Shari Ryan of MadHat Covers, and edited by me, Christina Boyd of The Quill Ink…it only made sense that our giveaways throughout this venture also highlight women-owned small businesses. And it is our sincere hope that whether you win any of our giveaways or not, you will support these business savvy, creative “rational creatures”:

  1. Northanger Soapworks has specially created a “Rational Creatures” soap: fresh scent with notes of bergamot, apricot, and currant.
  2. Paper & Slate has customized a “Rational Creatures” candle scent of white tea and plumeria.
  3. PNW Vibes has bespoke tanks and tees, perfect for making the point that you too are a “rational creature.”

This sounds so fantastic, Christina!  I love the theme of this anthology so much!!! #GirlPower Jane Austen created such fantastic and intriguing characters, and I cannot wait to see how this spectacular team of authors flesh out their stories!  Especially because you are including more than just the main heroines of each novel!  Must gather my patience because October is a long ways away!!!



In conjunction with this special announcement, The Quill Ink will be giving away 3 amazing prize packages!   

These prize packages include:


  1. Rational Creatures anthology; available in September
  2. One “Rational Creatures” custom soap by Northanger Soapworks
  3. One “Rational Creatures” novel candle by Paper & Slate
  4. One “Rational Creature” bespoke tank or tee by PNW Vibes
  5. E-books of The Darcy Monologues and Dangerous to Know: Jane Austen’s Rakes & Gentlemen Rogues


  1. One prize package will be sent to one randomly drawn name. Simply visit and comment at all three blog stops for this announcement: JUST JANE 1813, Austenesque Reviews and From Pemberley to Milton.
  2. Two of the same above packages will be available to two winners via Rafflecopter

a Rafflecopter giveaway

To enter: comment on 3 blogs – THIS ONE, From Pemberley to Milton, AND JUST JANE 1813 – and fill out the Rafflecopter form above!

  • This giveaway will end May 10th.
  • This giveaway is open worldwide.

Thank you for supporting another indie project by The Quill Ink. If the stories that have trickled in so far are any indication of the quality of stories for this collection, I am expecting Rational Creatures to exceed even my exacting standards. Am beyond excited for the possibilities. This is sure to be a diverting journey. I hope you will join us. Follow us at Facebook and Goodreads.

Thank you, Christina, for everything – for creating a new brilliant anthology for us to enjoy, for putting together such a lovely reveal, and for sponsoring such wonderful giveaways (I can’t wait to go shopping!) I’m so grateful to help share your announcement today!  Wishing you all the very best with this wonderful project, Christina!!!

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  129 Responses to “Announcement and Cover Reveal of Rational Creatures + Giveaway!!!”


    Can’t wait until the new book is released. What a wonderful giveaway. Thank you everyone.


      Thank you, Julia. So excited for this project and tall the women involved.


      Me too! I love the creative items in this giveaway! I’m hoping they are available for purchase as well! 😉


        Yes, all of the Rational Creatures bespoke swag is available for purchase at their respective sites. I know the candle from Paper & Slate will be available in May. And the soap from Northanger Abbey will be ready to ship early May too. The shirts from PNW Vibes are each custom painted and are available to order on their site now. Thanks for bringing that up!


    Ahh, it just wouldn’t be a successful launch of our books without you hosting us, Meredith. Thanks so much!


      And she has been such an enthusiastic supporter of all the anthologies, even before they were properly planned.


      You both are so kind to say so! I’m such a fan of these anthologies and truly love that these sorts of projects are actually happening! The genre needs more brilliant collections like these!


    This is indeed wonderful news, Christina! You’ve been hinting about it since Monday and now your secret is out! The book cover is beautiful and I cannot wait for October to come.


    What a lovely cover! And what a fabulous line up of authors! I knew I would love TDM because, well because they were all Darcy stories . I wasn’t as sure about DTK but turned out I loved that as well. So I have no doubts about this one. Thanks ladies for sharing this great news.


      Isn’t it?! And yes, such an amazing group! I’ve read books by each author and I’m so excited to see them all collaborating together! What a dream come true! I’m glad you loved DTK and have no doubts about loving Rational Creatures! 🙂


      I am feeling like this is going to surprise you as well, Glynis! Thank you.


    I really really love that cover – thank you Meredith for supporting this exciting project:-)


    Really like the cover and look forward to reading


    Love the cover! Please do not put me in the giveaway. Just had to say, “WOW!”


    Thanks, Meredith for hosting our announcement! I’m thrilled to be part of this anthology about the women of Austen And this cover may be my favorite yet!


    I’m pleased and proud to be part of Christina’s #TheSweetSixteen. And I LOVE this cover! The pinks evoke softness, while the charcoal background speaks of grit … courage, resolve, and strength of character. Like Meredith said, the cover differs strikingly from those for TDM and DtK. The ribbon, however, neatly ties together all three Quill Collective anthologies.

    Thanks, Meredith, for sharing Christina’s announcement and for wanting backstories for more than just main characters (hint, hint). Good luck to your readers in the fabulous giveaways!


      Oooh! So very true and I’m not surprised that this astute observation comes form you! 😉 I can easily relate the pink to soft and delicate, but would not have come up with the charcoal symbolism. 😉 I know you deliver a wonderful story, Joanne! I cannot wait to learn more about it!


      Joanne, I know readers are going to be surprised and touched by your poignant story — at least o was! Truly wonderful.


    So looking forward to reading this. What a lineup of authors and that cover is lovely! Thanks for the chance to win the prizes. Good luck with the publication, Christine.


    I love the ribbon that’s on the cover !


    I have been patiently (well…sort of) awaiting this announcement! So excited! Gorgeous cover! I can’t wait to see what these amazing authors bring us! I am thrilled Dangerous to know is now audio as well. Such a fun way to revisit these stories! Congratulations one and all!


    Hi Meredith, thank you for this article. I agree with you, this is the right book for this time of movements like #metoo , I’m so proud of Christina’s work and can’t wait to read all the authors’ stories!!!


    The cover is lovely and the book sounds great. Congrats on the release.


    Another worthy addition to the ‘Quill Collective’! Adore the cover and the title! Congratulations to all!


    This is exciting news. I am all anticipation. Who will they pick and what will their stories be?

    Congratulations on this newest book. Thank you for the opportunity to win.


    Wow, Christina, you really got your swagger on with the marketing! Soap, candle, T-shirts! And I adore the cover. Glad to see so many familiar names in the antho, too.


      Thank you! I am so grateful to partner with such talented artisans and smart women-owned small businesses who created gorgeous products that would help promote our book campaign.


      She did! Those are some lovely items and I love that Christina is spotlighting these artisans in this announcement! 🙂


    Beautiful cover and fantastic lineup of authors. Congratulations on another anthology! Jen Red


    Such an amazing bunch of authors and a gorgeous cover! Excited for it to come out!!


    Woohoo! *dances happily* Thank you, Christina, for this new gift!


    Thanks so much for the wonderful announcement and for spreading the love for the Rational Creatures, Meredith! I’m ever so excited to be part of Christina’s new anthology, and to work with so many of my favourite authors! And the cover is absolutely *awesome*!!


      You are awesome! I am Looking forward to your story. Anything you write is always top drawer!


      I agree, Joana! It is such a brilliant project and it is made even more wonderful by the people taking part in it! I can’t wait to see what your story will be! I know i will be amazing!!


    so many wonderful writers in this anthology



    Sweet sixteen! I love it, Christina. Thank you for pulling this together. It promises to be a wonderful collection! Meredith, thank you so much for hosting!


    Congratulations to all the lovely ladies involved! This sounds wonderful! Thank you for the chance to win such a great prize package 🙂



    The cover is absolutely STUNNING ! And what a group of fabulous authors ! Christina, I am pretty sure yuo did it again ! Congrats to everyone involved in this awesome project!


    So excited!


    Beautiful cover and wonderful giveaway. Very impressive and great authors.


    The cover is gorgeous, the concept fascinating, your enthusiasm, Christina (ha – just chuckled, remembering HENRY), and yours, Meredith, the line-up, Dr. Looser (coup?)!.. The whole EVENT is inspiring!! Congratulations to all involved, and, oh, yes, I WANNA WIN. . Thanks loads for the divinely tantalizing prize smorgasbord of delights!! Super fun!!!


    Congratulations, ladies!


    How exciting! Very much looking forward to reading this new anthology.


    Stunning cover! Can’t wait to check out this newest anthology from the group of amazing authors. Congrats ladies!


    Awesome… awesome… just plain awesome. I love that cover and hope it makes the Cover Wars. It would have to win. Just saying. Special thanks goes to the vendors for the generous give-a-way. Man… those items rock. Congratulations to Christina Boyd and all the authors for their hard work and blessings on this launch. Thanks for hosting Meredith… and hello to Mr. Bingley.


    I love reading anthologies because it is like speed dating new authors, you get to spend a little time with them before committing to a whole book! 🙂


      Love that analogy! It is so true though because many times I’ll go looking for more works by an author because I loved their story in an anthology!


    Oh dear, Lady Susan amongst others pride of place in the story… But it sounds really interesting and surprising. So please count me in, thank you!


      You just never know how these talented authors are going to take on the challenge! I have full confidence in #TheSweetSixteen to develop thoughtful, entertaining stories for our anthology theme. No doubts. Thanks for your interest.




    This sounds fun!


    The cover is gorgeous! And what a stellar line-up of authors! I’ve added this title to my ‘To Read’ list!


    That annoying thing called Real Life stopped me in my tracks just as I was about to comment on your post, Christina and Meredith. Now, two days later, I’m trying to catch up! What can I say that hasn’t already been said? TDM was an amazing collaboration that you pulled off, Christina. I think we all thought that it was going to be a one-off at the time. Then came the rumours of another anthology which turned into DtK. I have to admit that I was a little dubious about the lead characters of some of the stories but it just goes to show that I know nothing (just like Jon Snow!). I read that at the end of last year and having listened to TDM on audio this year, I now have to listen to DtK – it’s next up on my playlist. I hope that Rational Creatures will eventually be available in that format – pretty please?

    When I first heard that there was a new anthology on the cards very recently, I wondered what the subject was going to be. Only two thoughts came to mind; Elizabeth Bennet or a collection of various (good or bad) female characters. Turns out it was the latter and the title you’ve chosen fits perfectly. The cover of RC is totally gorgeous, of course. Shari has “hit the ball out of the park” (as I believe is a saying from across the pond) once more. The #sweetsixteen is a fantastic group of writers that you’ve got together again, all of whom I believe are pathologically incapable of writing a bad tale. The teaser about who some of the stories are going to be about is just that – teasing and tantalising!

    I’ll certainly be getting the Kindle edition of RC but I think I’m simply going to have to get the paperback versions of both DtK AND RC one day, as they ought to have their own photo tours, just as I did with TDM last year. And I simply hate not having a complete set of a series in a particular format – I’m a bit OCD about things like that.

    One final request. An anthology of Elizabeth Bennet stories would go down very well if you’re planning another collection in the future, certainly with me and, I suspect, just about everyone else!


      I love all your interest, speculation, support of all our projects, and enthusiasm for this new one. October is months away but we have much work to do between now and then. Hope we won’t try your patience too much between now and then.

      Elizabeth’s anthology… One never knows…

      Hope you enjoy our #RakesAndGentlemenRogues audiobook! André Refig was awesome to work with and has amazing range that I think showcased the various characters well.

      Thank you much.


      Oh thank you so much for stopping by and leaving such a wonderful comment, Anji! We appreciate it! 🙂 I am so glad that Christina is continuing to create more anthologies and not just one! The 2 that are already released were so fantastic and I sincerely loved them so much! But they did have men as the main characters, it definitely seems fair and only right that we now see women as the main characters! I cannot wait!!!

      Loved your photo tour with TDM! Would love to see you do another! Hope you are enjoying a lovely week, my friend!


    Fantastic cover for a book with a truly distinctive premise!!!
    Best of luck to all concerned with this project!!
    Looking forward to reading these ladies tales.


      Thank you! We are thrilled about the whole process. The stories that have been coming in and the synopsis I’ve heard are so on point…I’m giddy with excitement.


    This book sounds like another winner. Though I hoped for more Darcy. Can you ever have enough stories about him? I really like that the ladies that do not take centerstafe now get to shine.


      Hahah! Thanks, Charlotte. Never too much Darcy. Hope you enjoyed out “The Darcy Monologues.” It’s available in audio — nothing like over 15 hours of Darcy stories in your ear if that helps…


    What a sensational cover! I look forward to reading Rational Creatures this September.
    I have just loaded The Darcy Monologues and Dangerous to Know on my Kindle Unlimited, so will be reading them both soon.
    Thank you for the great giveaway.


      Hope you enjoy the first two anthologies. #RationalCreatures won’t be available until October unless of course you are one of the lucky three winners to win an advanced copy available in September! Good luck and thank you!


    It looks like great lineup of authors. Can’t wait to read the stories.


      Thanks, Jennifer! The stories are fantastic even at the first draft level. I’m feeling super excited.


    Oh my gosh, i am in love with this idea! Strong women run in my family and are sometimes considered a little too strong – as if there is such a thing! I look forward to reading this.


    Love the cover! And what a fantastic giveaway – – thank you to all!


    I loved The Darcy Monologues and I can’t wait to see what Rational Creatures has in store for us! Thanks to everyone for this wonderful giveaway!


      Thank you! I am too am excited as this project is underway at last.


      Debbie— you were randomly selected as a winner by RandomNamePick! Congrats!
      And thanks for supporting the anthology project. I believe Meredith will contact you to get your contact info for me.


    I’d love to win. Whoever does will be an excited creature! Not too familiar with these books.


    First off, thank you to all who continue to support our indie projects and all who enthusiastically cheered this coming anthology. Congratulations to Debbie— who was selected as a winner by RandomNamePick for this announcement blog hop. Also, Sharon Legg and KasiaB won the other two gift packages via Rafflecopter.
    We appreciate all the support and interest. We hope you will continue to follow and talk about our project as we have many more giveaways and promotions planned for our “Rational Creatures”!

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