Gabrielle Bisset

Monday, February 28, 2011

The Kernal Of An Idea

I'm teaching a course on medieval Europe this semester and while I was scouring the library for a film to show about the First World War (another class, obviously), I came upon a book about chivalry and its connection to religion in the Middle Ages.  I'm a sucker for books like this, so I picked it up along with my video and beat feet out of there to make it to my first class. 

When I got home, I began to read the book and I don't think I made it four pages in before I was jotting down ideas for a medieval romance story.  I don't have anything really fleshed out, but I'm feeling the novella vibe for this one--around 25,000 words.  Since this is one of my favorite periods in history, I'm not surprised my brain is popping with ideas. 

I don't know what's going to shake out with this, but I like the idea of knights, those wonderful Alpha males in chainmail, maybe misbehaving.  Maybe nothing too serious but far more erotic for this story.  Hmmm....we'll have to see. 

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Another Great Weekend

As I sit here late Saturday night, I'm finished with my writing for the weekend.  My goal was 24 pages, and I wrote about 30, so I feel very good.  Someone asked me the other day how I can write so much in a sitting.  I explained that I really don't have the opportunity to write each day because of work and life and everything else that requires my time, so I save up ideas (jotting them down in the margins of my notebooks) all week and then write on the weekend.  So while it seems like 30+ is a lot, for a week, I'm not writing as much as I'd like.  That's less than 5 pages a day for a 7 day week, but it's what I can do for now.  I'd prefer to write every day, but this semester is just a dog this year. 

I'm beginning Chapter 21 on Destiny Renewed and still am hovering on Chapter 14 of Broken Destiny.  Things are moving along nicely with Stolen Destiny going toward publication in June.  This week I got to complete information about what I see for the cover, which I have to admit, was so thrilling I was silly with happiness for a few days.  (I'm such a newbie!)  Just the thought that soon I'll be published is still sinking in. 

I've set a goal of the end of March to be finished with Destiny Renewed, which would put me at the end of April to get it typed (remember, I hand write everything first, so I have the second leg of the journey once I finish writing the book), edited, and out to my beta readers.  I hope to submit that book right around the time the first one is published.  (Fingers crossed!)

As for Broken Destiny, I'm aiming for a May 1 date to complete that, but that might be a bit ambitious. Still, that's my goal.  That would put me at the beginning of June with it typed, edited, and out to my beta readers.  A late summer submit would be success for this one. 

And for the last book, which is actually the first one I wrote in this series but put aside when Stolen Destiny invaded my mind one day in the shower, I'm looking forward to resurrecting it and moving ahead with that one after the previous two are edited to within an inch of their lives and submitted.  I don't have a name for this one yet, but it will be the last one in the Destined Ones Series, barring some major change that isn't on the horizon quite yet. 

Whew!  I think I need a beer and some R & R before the week begins again.  Here's to a wonderful week for us all!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

18+ Over Book Blogger Tag Along and A New Hop

The 18 & Over Book Blogger Tag Along is hosted by Bitten by Paranormal Romance, and it's a good chance for those who read and appreciate adult books to find others like them.

This week the tag along includes a question:  Name a couple of your favorite erotic authors.  I like a lot of erotica, but for me Charlotte Featherstone is one of the very best erotic authors, hands down.  Her books combine erotica and history, two of my favorite things, and they're incredible, from the cover on.  Her most recent book is a perfect example.  The cover sets the stage and then the story is just fantastic.  If I hadn't been a huge fan of hers before, Lust would've made me an instant convert.

Also, one of the erotic authors that got me interested in the genre is Robin Schone.  Her books The Lady's Tutor and The Lover still have top shelf status on my bookshelf.  They may be from 2002, but they're still incredibly erotic reads.

If you've come with the tag along, please leave a comment and let me know you were here.  

This week I'm also doing a new hop, the Book Blogger Hop, hosted by Jennifer at Crazy for Books. Each week she offers a question and bloggers answer it, so here's this week's:  Do you ever wish you would have named your blog something different? 

I see lots of blogs with really great names, but I figured that since this blog is about my writing, I should name it something that indicates that.  Actually what I do wish I could do differently is the theme of my blog, but that will have to wait a little bit.  :)

If you found my blog through the Book Blogger Hop, please leave a comment so I can visit your blog and follow too!  Have a wonderful weekend! 


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I'm The Feature Thursday Star At WordsInSync

Many thanks to Shah at WordsInSync for interviewing me for her Feature Thursday post. Shah is a wonderful blogger who dedicates her time to many areas, including creativity.  Her interview was thoughtful and definitely made me think! 

Please take a look at her blog and the interview at Feature Thursday at WordInSync.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Each weekend, I devote the vast majority of my time to writing.  This means little else gets done around my house, but that's ok with me and the people I live with, so it works.  I aim for 12-15 pages each weekend (around 3000-3750 words for those of you who think in those terms).  Usually I hit my goal, but this weekend, I had an extra day to write because school was called off due to winter returning with a vengeance, so I got much more done than I expected.

Between Friday night and last night, I finished 39 pages:  11 pages in Broken Destiny and 28 pages in Destiny Renewed.  To say I'm thrilled would be an understatement. 

As someone who hand writes everything first, those 39 pages are filled with self-editing that occurs along the way.  The margins of my pages are filled with ideas and notes about everything from research about a scene to the possibility of moving sections to other parts of the story. 

What this does mean is that I have a mountain of typing ahead of me as I only have the first 5 or so chapters typed in each story and I'm up to the late teens in both.  That brings a sense of dread to my creativity, though.  I love to imagine stories, and I love to write them.  Researching them is enjoyable too.  But typing is not.  Whereas when I write the story, I'm sitting comfortably somewhere (usually my bedroom) and there's music playing, when I'm typing I end up all hunched over and bleary eyed. 

I had someone once ask me what I would do if I ever became famous and my answer was immediate:  hire someone to type my work.  But on this wonderful, sunny day in February, I won't think any more about the drudgery of typing.  I'll just continue to enjoy my progress and the ideas I have percolating in my mind for when I get back to the written page (hopefully in a day or so).


Sunday, February 20, 2011

Seven Facts Award

Wow!  As I was hopping along this weekend, I found out that Ronda from Queentutt's World of Escapism awarded me the Seven Facts Award.  Thank you so much, Ronda!  Please, everyone take a trip over to her wonderful world where today (Sunday, 2-20) she has the most delicious book reviewed.

Here is how it works:

1. Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to their blog. 
2. Post seven random facts about yourself.
3. Pass on the award along to 15 other worthy bloggers.

I will be posting later the 15 bloggers who I can award this to (since most of the bloggers who follow me already have this award posted on their blogs!).  For now, here are seven random facts about me. 

1.  Seven is my favorite number--and my lucky number!

2.  I've only had my blog for about a month. 

3.  My favorite period in history is the medieval period, pre-Columbian and colonial period for American history.

4.  I have naturally curly hair I usually straighten, except in the summer.

5.  I've known my best friend for 38 years.

6.  My favorite color is blue.

7.  My favorite time of year is summer.


Friday, February 18, 2011

The Weekend Creation Blog Hop

I found this blog hop through a blogger I follow and love the idea!  It's hosted by Shah Wharton over at Words in Sync and is open to anyone who uses their blog for creative purposes.  Since I use this blog to showcase and discuss my completed book and WIP, I thought it would be perfect.  Please be sure to visit Shah and all the lovely people involved in the Weekend Creation Blog Hop.

As for my creations, I discuss them in blog posts, but today I posted an excerpt from my first book, a paranormal romance entitled Stolen Destiny, on the Excerpts page.  It's been accepted at Siren-BookStrand for publication later this year.  I plan to put excerpts from my other WIP up, but it's the weekend, so I'm off to write. 

Thank you for stopping by, and please leave a comment so I can visit you and follow. Have a wonderful weekend!


18 & Over Book Blogger Tag Along

I'm at work posting this (shhhh.....don't tell....the last thing I want is my students to know what I do when I'm not around them! lol).  I read the most delicious book this week, Blood on Silk by Marie Treanor.  And I found out that I was just in time to read the sequel, Blood Sin, coming out next month.  I have always been a great fan of vampire stories, and her story was just one of the best I've read in ages.  Smart, very well-written, and fantastic characterization--the vampire Saloman is just perfect--the book is just wonderful, paranormal romance writing to fall in love with!

Ok, now for the tag along.  The 18 & Over Book Blogger Tag Along is hosted by Bitten by Paranormal Romance, and it's a good chance for those who read adult books to find others like them. And I saw this morning that they will be having something (guest post or interview) with author Marie Treanor on March 9, so I'll be sure to be there that day to read about what she has to say, hopefully about her next book. 

If you're here from the tag along, please leave a comment and follow.  I try to get to everyone each weekend, but sometimes if the muse takes over and I begin writing, I don't get back to this until Sunday.  But I enjoy visiting all the blogs and following what you're up to with your reading.

And I've finally posted an excerpt from the first book in the Destined Ones Series, Stolen Destiny, on the Excerpts page, so please take a look.  It's a pretty sexy excerpt to start off with, but I thought I'd hit readers with some steamy stuff first.  Have a wonderful day!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Destined Ones Series

After I submitted Stolen Destiny to the publisher in the hopes of getting a contract, I added a few pages more to the first chapter to refocus the story on the main male character/hero, Varek, instead of Callia, who is the main female character.  I realized that all along I had been thinking this was Varek's story, but it didn't begin with him, so I figured it need to be changed a bit to show that.  Now the reader immediately meets him after the prologue and hopefully finds an attachment formed with him. 

In other news, the publisher has asked me the name of the series and I've chosen the title as Destined Ones.  So the first book will be Stolen Destiny: A Destined Ones Series Novel or something like that.  I've decided that the series will have four books, unless someone wants me to do more, which in that case, I'll definitely consider it.  I enjoy writing about Aeveren, so it wouldn't involve arm twisting to get me to write more.  But as it is, I have the first one finished and submitted, the second one about 60% completed, the third one about 40% completed, and the fourth one 70% completed.  I know that this seems to be an odd listing, but the last book is the first one I began writing and now have returned to with the knife of an editor in hand. 

And I've started creating a book trailer for Stolen Destiny.  I can't tell you how much fun that's been.  I've never considered myself very creative in that area, but I've had a blast with finding pictures and music that work with the story.  I can't wait to post it! 

I hope you're having as wonderful a February as I am, and if you're in one of the areas of the United States where it's been snowy, icy, and cold, remember that spring is only 5 weeks away!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Is That An Historical, Or Are You Just Happy To See Me?

A few days back I mentioned to someone that I had written a romance, and their first response was, "Oh, is it something in history?"  I guess that's a natural response since I do have a master's in history, and I've been asked this question quite often.  My answer has always been that I have been pulled to paranormal romance instead of historical romance.  Well, I think an historical romance just began knocking on my brain's door.

Last Saturday, I spent the better part of the afternoon researching my hero's history in late 18th century England.  This was nothing new since I'd already written a little of his history in this time in the first book, but I had a great time doing the research and the chapter flowed beautifully onto the paper. (Yes, I am one of those people who write things about and then type them.  It's something about the feel of the pen and paper.)

Since then, ideas have been percolating in my mind about a single title historical.  I'm not sure it would be a Regency, although the romance readers of the world love that type of romance novel.  But ideas are there, so I won't be surprised if one day things begin to flow.  Now it's just a matter of when.

And on another front, the story I mentioned a few posts ago that I'd been mapping out has begun to take shape.  It involves Greek mythology in the form of Ares and Aphrodite, but it will be set in modern times.  I'm leaning toward it not being romance, but I'm still in the first chapter, so who knows where this one will lead.

Friday, February 11, 2011

18 and Over Book Blogger Tag Along and Follow Friday

This Friday, I'm celebrating the fact that I've gotten an offer to publish my book.  Siren-Bookstrand, the first publisher I queried, contacted me and wants to publish Stolen Destiny!  I'm so thrilled I can barely keep my feet on the ground!  So today is definitely a day I want to share with others.  This week, in addition to the great 18 and Over Book Blogger Tag Along, I'm doing Follow Friday.  I liked what I saw at both the blogs hosting these, so I figured I'd join in. 

The tag along is hosted by Bitten by Paranormal Romance, and it's a good chance for those who read adult books to find others like them. 

The question for this week is:  What's your favorite genre?

Paranormal romance, of course!  :)  And I can tell you that it's as much fun writing them as reading them. 

And Follow Friday is hosted by Parajunkee at her blog, Parajunkee's View.

The question for Follow Friday is:  What is your favorite romance hero stereotype? Do you like the strong, silent type or the brute, macho man?

I prefer strong men, mainly mad, bad, and dangerous to know.  That's why paranormal heroes are often my favorite.  There's nothing wrong with the contemporary or historical heroes, but they aren't usually the kind of bad boys I like best. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Good Vibrations

I've been querying for a little over a month now while my critique partners have finished reading Stolen Destiny, and I've been getting really good feedback.  I think what I'm happiest about is that the readers who have spent time with my book are really liking it. 

I always knew that the idea of a race of people called Aeveren could appeal to readers, particularly paranormal romance readers, because while they're different in that they live 50 lives through reincarnation, often have powers above what humans possess, and have destined ones-mates they're drawn to across time and distance-they're characters that readers can relate to.  Paranormal romance fans love the idea of different, and Aeveren are definitely different than humans, but at the same time, they feel all the emotions and go through all the experiences human beings do. 

Stolen Destiny is mainly a romance about Varek and Callia, but as one of my readers keeps reminding me, it's also very much about the villain, Amon.  Varek is tall, dark, and strong and was easy to write because he's so wonderful a character.  He's a bad boy who has a sexy, soft spot to him.  I think some would say it doesn't matter if any of my characters convey appeal for the story to work because the love interests in my books are Aeveren, who have destined ones they're drawn to.  I never felt that as I was writing Varek's character because even though he and Callia are destined for one another, I always wanted the attraction to be far more than biological.  That may be what draws them to one another, but the heat comes from real attraction between two people.

Callia originally began quite sweetly, but very quickly I decided that she needed to be strong and have some romantic experience.  I'm not a fan of writing virgins, so while she's never had a destined one, unlike the men in the story, she certainly has had lifetimes of experience.  Beautiful and sexy, she's a great match for Varek.

Amon is simply the easiest character I've ever written.  As tall and masculine as Varek, he's fair with blond hair and leaner.  But it isn't in his physical being that Amon is appealing but in the way he exudes power.  The challenge was to make sure scenes with Varek and Amon didn't become testosterone contests, so I had to be very conscious of how I structured their scenes together.  More than once I'd write an entire scene and then go back and decide that this one had to be silent or that one had to facially show more than he was to allow each male to come through without overwhelming one another.  While Amon is certainly more powerful because he's been given extraordinary abilities neither Varek nor Callia possess (and 99% of their fellow Aeveren don't either), I didn't want him to be the focus of the book.  However, he gets his own story in one of the sequels, Destiny Renewed

So far, 2011 has been a wonderful year for my writing.  Readers are interested in my characters and the story of Stolen Destiny, and the sequels are coming along really well.  I hope to have Destiny Renewed finished before summer and the next book finished later this year.  In addition, I decided that the series will end with four books, so that will leave one more that I'm still firming up plans for in my head.  Finally, I've been mapping out some plans for a new book that may end up as straight fiction instead of romance.  That one is still in the earliest stage, but I'm eager to begin jotting down some real ideas to get that one going.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award

My friend Selena, whose blog is The Enchanted Book, has awarded me The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award.  She's one of my closest friends and one of the people I rely on to read my work, in addition to being one of the best editors--seriously the girl can find a grammar or plot structure problem from a mile away!  Thank you, Selena, for this award.

For this award, I'm supposed to divulge four guilty pleasures and pass the award on, but since I'm new on the blog scene, I'll hold the award passing on until the future.  For now, here are my guilty pleasures.

1.  I love 70s music.  No kidding.  Disco, 70s hard rock, singer/songwriter stuff....I love it all. 

2.  I love reading the classics.  For someone who writes romance, the classics may seem like a departure.  But the classics are good stuff--that's why they're the classics!  I find Mark Twain's essays, particularly the ones on the German language and James Fenimore Cooper, to be hysterical.

3.  It's embarrassing how much junk food I eat.  Because of my schedule, I often don't have time to eat a real meal between having to be in one place and then the other.  I'm certain it's corroding my arteries as we speak.   

4.  I love good comedy.  I watched an episode of The Ricky Gervais Show last night that had me in tears and doubled over it was so funny.  I love anything that makes me laugh that hard.

Researching The Hero's Past

I write paranormal romance, so usually that means I'm limited only by my imagination, but my characters all have pasts that span many years, so for those parts of my stories, usually found in flashbacks, I have to do research.  Sometimes I choose to either place my characters in time periods I know quite well (I am a history instructor, so my areas of specialty are easy choices for me) or I choose to place them in eras that are less historically important but geographically important.  I try to stay away from major events, such as wars, because I find they can become time drains and make the story go off the rails quite quickly.

Today I spent some good time researching late 18th century England for my lead male character in the book I'm currently writing. I had to decide where in England to place him and what to make him (duke, earl, etc. or landed gentry).  I chose landed gentry because I didn't want to get too heavily involved in the titles and everything else that comes along with peerage.  My knowledge of English history is fair, but I have to admit I'm a bit lacking in the details of the late 1700s in England.  In addition, I can usually say that my knowledge of any time period's culture is only fair, other than in my specialties, because I'm overall a political/military historian. 

So off to the books and internet I went, and I had a great time doing it!  The chapter flowed beautifully with the knowledge I gained, and I'm so pleased with my progress today.  I'll finish the chapter tomorrow, and then it's back to the present for my hero and me. 


Friday, February 4, 2011

18 and Over Book Blogger Tag Along

This is my first 18 and Over Book Blogger Tag Along, and I'm thrilled to find bloggers reading my favorite types of books!  My friend Selena at The Enchanted Book told me about it and since I read and write adult romance and erotica, I thought it would be great to join others who like these genres as well.  The tag along is hosted by Bitten by Paranormal Romance, and it's a good chance for those who read adult books to find others like them. 

The question for this week is:  Do you prefer erotic novellas or novels?

I like novellas for erotic reading.  It's not that novels are something I won't read, but in this genre, I'm more likely to go for a quicker hit.