Gabrielle Bisset

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Author Natasha Blackthorne Guest Spot

I want to welcome a fellow history buff/author to the site today.  Natasha Blackthorne holds a B.A. in history, and it definitely  comes through in her new novella, Grey's Lady.  Here's the blurb:

Grey’s Lady

Book one in the Carte Blanche Series

Seeking sexual excitement and conquest, poor but beautiful Beth seduces wealthy merchant prince Grey Sexton, only to find herself the pursued as he seeks to own her body and soul.

In Philadelphia, PA 1812

Flouting the moral standards of Jeffersonian America, temptress Beth McConnell lets no man touch her heart. Her motto is love them once and leave them burning.

But when she boldly seduces Grey Sexton, a self-controlled merchant prince from New York, she finds herself too fascinated by his ice-over-fire nature to stay away. His possessive determination to own her, body and soul, threatens to expose her secret erotic life to public shame.

But Beth will only surrender her love to a man she can trust. And Grey's materialistic approach to relationships leaves her little reason to believe he can ever give her what she truly needs.

For these two cynical yet lonely people, can deep sexual intimacy work a miracle and lead to the opening of their hearts?

Heat Level: EROTIC +18 ONLY

Here’s an excerpt that illustrates the battle for dominance between Grey and Beth in their love affair (Total-e-Bound is a UK Publisher and this excerpt is presented in British English):

“Are you hungry?” he asked, his tone front-parlour-polite.
“No.” She couldn’t possibly eat. She’d been pent up with desire like a caged cat for two weeks. Now, so close to being beneath him again, she could barely keep herself from swooning from the excitement.
“You know, for a moment there, I thought you were about to bolt.”
“No, never.”
“That’s a relief.” He laughed without smiling and pressed something into her hand—a key. He whispered his room number. “Go up. I’ll follow shortly.”
“I haven’t much time.”
“Very shortly.” The edgy promise in his voice sent a bolt of desire twisting through her belly. Her knees melted to jelly and she wobbled.
“Careful.” His strong hands gripped her shoulders, steadying her, his face showing none of the emotion pounding through her own body. How could he remain so unaffected?
Impulse seized her and she caught hold of his lapels. “Kiss me.”
He leaned closer. Heavens, anyone could come along and catch them. Oh the risk… But her breath quickened and her nipples stiffened, straining against her stays. She closed her eyes, tilted her head up. Waited.
And waited.
“How many men since me?” He laid his large hand at the base of her throat and a thrill went chasing through her. “Look me in the eye.”
Her lids fluttered open and his gaze pierced into her with such intensity she gasped. “It has only been two weeks.”
“Answer me, Beth.”
Another thrill trembled through her. Fear or anticipation? She couldn’t say. “None.”
Still holding her throat, he studied her for several long moments. She set her jaw, refusing to waver under his scrutiny.
He bent and his mouth pressed hers, hard and hasty. Passion spiralled, took her soaring to the stars. Lassitude weakened her and wetness seeped between her legs. He lifted his head. She tightened her hands on his lapels, trying to pull him back. He resisted, his eyes trained on her like a stag with a doe.
Kiss me. Just kiss me, you arrogant jackanapes.
“Now, go.” He released her, set her veil back in place and left her there.
She gaped at his departing back, watching how he moved, so tall and proud. Over-proud. Did he have any idea what a rarefied class he found himself in? She didn’t go around asking just any man to kiss her. She had very high standards and she shared herself with only a select few. She was bestowing quite an honour on him and yet he reacted as if she were the one who ought to be grateful. And to add insult to injury, he hadn’t even kissed her. Not truly.

Check out the book trailer!

(For adults only. Erotic Content. M/F. Heat Level White Hot! By clicking on this link you affirm you are 18 or older and have reached the age of majority in your country of residence)

I want to thank Natasha for stopping by my blog today.  Grey's Lady looks delicious, and it's definitely on my TBR list! Want to know more about Natasha and what she's got coming next in the Carte Blanche series? Find her here:

Twitter: @Nblackthorne
Book Trailers:
Amazon Author Page:

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Masquerade Tour Wraps Up And Reading Is Sexy

Masquerade's tour wraps up today at the wonderful Liz's Coffee Beans and Love Scenes blog. It has been a great tour, and I thank each blogger who hosted me for guest posts, interviews, and giveaways.  You're the best, ladies!

My editor sent me the picture below, and I think it's right on time.  Reading is sexy, and there's nothing better than a good looking AND intelligent man.  For me, all the great romance heroes I adore are more than hot; they're smart.  My favorite J.R. Ward character, Vishous, is hot not only because he's fine but because he's the most intelligent Brother. Alpha is great, but intelligent Alpha is even better.

And also from the editor, here's a little cartoon for all those souls who can't get a hold on the Oxford comma. If it didn't involve strippers, I'd show it to my students. Cheers!

Have a great day! 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday Musings and Masquerade's Tour Continues

It's Monday again! I swear these weeks are flying by.  Where has September gone? Soon it will be October and...I don't even want to think about the weather that's just a couple months away.  Brrrrr...

Okay, no more of that.  I'll deal with the snow when it comes. For today, I'm here, there, and everywhere. Here, I'm happy to report that Destiny Redeemed is back from my editor.  I always love when my editor emails me with the words, "I loved it!", so I'm feeling very good about getting into final edits this week.

Next, with Masquerade's blog tour, I'm at Erotica For All where the wonderful Lucy Felthouse has given the book a terrific review. Definitely check it out and enter to win the giveaway there.  One lucky winner will receive a copy of Masquerade, so don't miss out.

Also, the fabulous group over at Menagerie Authors showcased the book trailer for Stolen Destiny yesterday and today I'm in the hot seat answering questions about writing, my favorite things, and men who can tie cherry stems with their tongues. (Where are those men anyway?)  Check out the book trailer HERE and the interview HERE.  And if you like hot men, check out their winners for past Best Hottie of the Year in the right sidebar.  I'm partial to 2008's co-winners. Mmmmm....

Whew! It's getting a little hot for Monday morning.  Time to go to work.  Have a great one!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Weekend Creation Hop And Another Stop On Masquerade's Tour

Another week gone by already!  Where does the time go?  I've been in the middle of Masquerade's blog tour this week, and today I'm at the fantastic blog Pimpin' Reads offering an excerpt from Masquerade and the chance for one commenter to win a copy.  While you're there, check out the rest of her blog too.  She and I have something in common...we both love V.  Love that sexy vampire! 

I'm doing my dear friend Shah's Weekend Creation Hop today too. I love her idea for this hop because I have the chance to see all kinds of creativity in my weekend travels around to my fellow hoppers. I've been dealing with a heady dose of the realities of making a creative vision come to life this week as I scoured the stock photo sites for images for my upcoming book, Blood Avenged.  It's been a quest of epic proportions, mostly fail on my part because I couldn't find what I wanted. 

However, the skies began to brighten yesterday.  The man I want on the cover seems to be working, and I found the perfect font for the title:  Van Helsing.  Of course, it's perfect, right?  :D  Now if the other elements would play nicely together, I think the cover could be another fantastic one by Elaina Lee.  God bless that woman for having to deal with someone like me.  I doubt she's ever met anyone so particular about a book cover!  But if you take a look to the right, you can see the results of our efforts.  As with everything else created, they take time, but the end is so worth it!

Enjoy hopping around, and I hope everyone has a great weekend! 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Blog Swap With Author Jenn Nixon

I'm over at Romancing the Book with an interview and giveaway today on Masquerade's blog tour, in addition to being at fellow author Jenn Nixon's blog with another interview.  In a true blog swap, here she is with information about her book, Wild & Wicked.

Today I welcome author Jenn Nixon to my blog to give readers a taste of her novella, Wild & Wicked from Tease Publishing.

Veronica Chance’s sister has gone missing. In order to find Valerie, “Roni” takes a waitressing job at Foxxes Gentlemen’s Club, the last place her sister worked, to search for clues. First day on the job, the club owner makes her give a lap dance to his VIP guest, Mr. Storm. Veronica’s instant attraction to him spells trouble and threatens to blow her cover.

Former detective Mason Storm can’t deny the connection he feels for the wild and mysterious Roni. During the lap dance, he learns about her missing sister, offers his help, only to be rejected. Not ready to give up, he confronts her again, adding in the fact he’s see her sister in the club, but she denies him once more.

When Veronica calls, acting rather strangely, Storm finds her at the club, drugged and giving a lap dance to a kid at an illegal after party.  Grateful for the help, Veronica comes clean about who she is, and accepts Storm’s offer to help. Together, they unravel the clues surrounding Valerie’s disappearance, uncover the horrible truth behind the illegal after parties, all the while exploring and succumbing to their lustful desires for each other.

“I’m sorry, didn’t mean to get busted…you don’t have to do this,” Mason said.

“He’s probably going to watch,” Starr replied, eyes roving to the spots Karl had surveillance. Now why would a waitress know where the cameras were? “And it’s my first day.” She stepped close, drawing his attention. Long shapely legs, covered to the knees in leather, straddled his thigh. Her hips and waist were within reach, and her full bust directly eye level.

She swayed back and forth, stunningly hypnotic.

When she moistened her lips and spun around giving him a rear view, the blood rushed from Mason’s brain. Starr bent down and pressed her ass against his thighs, his entire body flashed with heat. She grinded in a circular motion, awakening and enlarging him surprisingly fast. Spinning again, she dropped to his lap, put her hands on his shoulders, and stared down at him.

With her face clear, he tried to remember where he’d seen her.

She gyrated, eyes seductively peering down. He fought the strain in his jeans with each movement, though she made it impossible. She was hotter than hell during a heat wave. Starr lifted one leg, straddled a single thigh and shook her hips again. The woman bit her bottom lip. So naughty. So his type, he loved it.

Then an image of her with red hair flashed in his mind. She’d been in the club, disguised, sitting alone at the bar, drinking here yesterday. He glanced up at her, knew he was right.

To purchase Wild & Wicked, go to All Romance eBooks

Jenn Nixon resides in New Jersey. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Liberty State Fiction Writers. Her love for thrillers and suspense often finds its way into her novels whether they are Science Fiction or Romance. When not writing, Jenn spends her free time reading, absorbing pop culture and current events, and social networking online. For more information please visit or

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday

It's the middle of the week and what a great day it is!  I'm in the middle of an incredibly easy week at work; I did a read-through of Blood Avenged last night and really like what I have so far (90 pages); and today is another stop on Masquerade's blog tour.  Today I'm over at Release Notes talking about how I wrote Masquerade, and Karen has given the book a wonderful review.  Definitely check it out! Thank you, Karen, for such lovely words about the story. :D

I'm looking forward to tonight because I plan to get some good writing time in on Blood Avenged.  Vasilije's story is shaping up nicely.  Now if only I could say the same thing about the cover.  I've found the perfect model (a little more built than I imagined the main character, but as perfect as it's going to get LOL), and now, if I could find the perfect image of large open gates, I'd be set.  That's easier said than done, though.  Each night I've been on those damned stock photo sites searching until my eyes are bugged out of my head, but not tonight.  No, tonight I need to get writing since I haven't done so since Sunday.  The gates will have to wait...

The plan is to have Blood Avenged to my editor and readers by Thanksgiving and ready for release by mid-December.  If I keep getting sidetracked, it's going to be a much tighter squeeze than already planned.  So tonight I begin real tail-feather-shaking time.  And no more slacking off on Saturdays either.  There was a time I would write 20-30 pages on a Saturday, but I haven't done that once in September.  Time to get back on track, girl.  No more going out or chatting with the girls on the phone for hours.

Here's to a great and productive Wednesday for everyone!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

We've Got Winners!

Sorry this is so late, but I had to wait until I got home from work and for the winners to get back to me before I posted anything.  So without further ado, here are the winners from the 18 & Over Book Blogger Giveaway Hop:

FIRST PRIZE: signed copy of Stolen Destiny, book swag (including the bookmarks I just received in the mail today, and a $20 gift card for Amazon


SECOND PRIZE: choice of two of my ebooks and a $10 gift card for Amazon


Congratulations to both my winners, and thank you to everyone who entered. I'll be hosting other giveaways soon, so definitely come back for a chance to win more goodies!

A New Chapter

Sometime during the night, I reached another professional goal when the 5000th copy of my books was sold.  As I've said before, I'd hoped to reach this goal by spring 2012, so this means a lot to me. 5000 isn't some magical number that means anything other than people are purchasing my books, but as a symbol, it means that I've come a long way since selling the first 150 copies of Vampire Dreams during the entire month of June. 

I've never been much of a goal setter.  I'm one of those people who decides she's going to do something and then sets about doing it.  It's not a matter of goals, per se.  If I begin something, I feel as if I must finish it. As an author, however, the writing of the book is just the beginning.  For that, I don't set a goal but a deadline.  I decide when the book must be completed by in order to have it edited and formatted by a particular release date.  It's all very businesslike, but what comes afterward I can't set a deadline for.  This is where the goals come in.

My next goal is 10,000 books by March 21.  To reach that, I must do a few things.  First, I must promote, which means blog tours, Twitter, Facebook, and all those other outlets that allow me to talk up my work.  Second, I must write more books and release them.  To that end, Destiny Redeemed comes out on October 13 and Blood Avenged is scheduled for a mid-December release.  Then, I don't have any more releases planned until March 21, when I hope to have the first of my new series out.

This is a new chapter for me.  Thanks to everyone who's been so supportive.  Each day I get closer to the one overriding goal I've had since I began writing--to be able to call writing my only full time job and career. With a lot of hard work, I believe I can make that goal a reality.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Monday Musings and Masquerade's Blog Tour Begins!

It's late Sunday night and I'm writing this bleary-eyed after spending hours at stock photo sites.  You see, as an indie author, I have complete control over what my book covers look like.  This sounds like a dream come true, especially for those poor souls who have been at the mercy of a publisher's art department and saddled with a cover that makes them cringe every day.  In reality, what it means is that I have to search for just the person who should appear on my book cover and represent what the book is.  This is a difficult task, considering what these stock photo sites offer. 

Let me note that if I wrote YA, this cover task would be easy-peasy.  Every male on these sites looks all of 19, at most.  I write adult erotic romance (I know, the first two words seem redundant, but I saw a book with the words Teen and Slut yesterday in the erotica section...ok, enough of that), and my men are men, not boys or almost men.  My male characters are typically in their late 20s and early 30s, at least the ones who get the heroine and appear on the cover.  The problem is that stock sites don't seem to know men exist between the ages of 21 and 50.  So what does this leave me with?

Jimmy Thomas.  Don't get me wrong.  I love Jimmy Thomas.  I used him on Love's Master because his image with that woman was so perfect for the story, I couldn't imagine using anyone else. Literally, the second I saw the image I knew it was the only one to use.  His images are great quality and the variety is top shelf. If he'd fit into my vision all the time, he'd be on every cover.  Hell, it would be easy.  I could just go to his site, pick the one I like, and shazaam! Cover done.

However, what do I do if I want a blond man?  There is no blond Jimmy Thomas, as far as I can tell.  If there is, please give me the heads up and let me know.  Or what do I do if I need a male who isn't built like a brick shithouse?  Again, I love Jimmy's body, but not every romance book cover calls for a man so well built.  I might be out of step with most, but I don't want to mislead people with a cover that seems to point to a certain type of man when in fact a different type is described in the book.  Maybe it doesn't matter, but I'm particular about this.  If the man's a blond with short hair and lean, I can't use a dark haired man with long hair and a body that takes hours each day in the gym. 

I'm currently looking for a dark haired man, not too muscular but not scrawny, with a mysterious, almost evil look.  Feel free to say it:  I'd have more luck trying to find a needle in a haystack.  I did find one image of a man, but now I realize there are no less than five vampire books with him on the cover.  Yes, my man I seek to represent is a vampire, but somehow that just doesn't work if he's everywhere. 

Maybe it's time Vasilije started lifting weights. 

On a much lighter note, Masquerade's blog tour begins today at Kay Dee Royal's blog with an excerpt and a giveaway, so if you're looking to snag a copy of the last novella in the Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy, head on over there. Thank you to Kay Dee for a great start to the tour!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Super Sunday Stuff

Sundays in autumn--that means football!  Although I love spring and summer, fall is right up there because of football.  I won't tell you who I love since the poor souls have fallen on bad times (think silver and black), but a fan isn't a fan if she doesn't stay true. 

On the sexy romance front, I'm over at Secrets of a Book Lover today with my take on writing vs real life for erotic romance writers.  Thank you so much to Kelly and Crystal for inviting me to take part in the Erotic Romance Weekend event at their blogs. Be sure to check out both their very sexy blogs. 

Also, Nat from Reading Romances and the incredibly successful Small Blogs, Big Giveaways has me as the giveaway's Featured Author today.  Head on over there for a chance to win all three novellas in the Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy.  I'm getting ready to release the trilogy in one ebook and paperback, so today's giveaway is a start to that promotion. 

In other news, Masquerade will begin its blog tour tomorrow at KayDee Royal's blog, so look for that.  I've posted the schedule on the Upcoming Appearance page too, so check that out for all the great stops on the tour.

And finally, Destiny Redeemed has an official release date:  October 13!  Here's the blurb: 

Sentenced to spend the rest of his three remaining lifetimes in Nil, Amon Kalins is freed with the help of his Sidhe servant, Gethen, but now he must accept his life is never to be his again as the Council won't rest until he's safely back imprisoned within Nil's cold walls. Broken and nearly dead from his time in prison, Amon is saved by an Aeveren healer named Althea Forester. As a healer, Thea has served her people for 45 lifetimes, never having a destined one and always knowing each lifetime would ultimately end with her alone. But destiny hasn't forgotten her.

Drawn to the seductive Amon, Thea quickly becomes a pawn the Council uses to trap him. Taken prisoner by the sadistic leader of the rebel group, the Soren, Thea must survive the vicious world of the people hellbent on taking her destined one away forever, and Amon must risk everything dear to him to free her from those who would sacrifice her to claim the bigger prize and return him to Nil.

For more, click on over to Destiny Redeemed's page for an excerpt.  And look for more excerpts in the upcoming weeks! Have a wonderful Sunday!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thursday Thoughts

I'm doing the 18 & Over Book Blogger Giveaway Hop, so make sure to click on the graphic to the left to enter for some cool prizes.  There are over fifty bloggers participating, so check it out. 

The wonderful Talina over at Bookin' It has designed some incredible looking swag for Destiny Redeemed and Masquerade.  I can't wait until the UPS man brings them to my house.  It's like Christmas morning every time I get the proofs in my email and then again when the actual bookmarks and cover flats come.  Here's a little sneak preview (the actual bookmarks don't have white around them, though):


Thank you, Talina.  You're the best!

In other news, I'm over at Blackdoor Press today talking about crossing genres with my Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy, and one commenter will win a copy of Love's Master.  If you haven't read it yet, head on over there to read a taste of Lily and Kadar's story and enter to win. :)

Finally, I'm moving toward another professional goal that I thought I'd be waiting until next spring to reach, so that's really exciting.  It's long been known that the vast majority of books published, traditionally and otherwise, don't ever even sell 1000 copies, so the success of Vampire Dreams, Love's Master, and now Masquerade has been such a wonderful thrill for me.  To know that I'm about to reach 5000 copies sold is just incredible to me.  I can't thank the readers enough.  And to everyone who asks when the next book is coming, I promise it won't be long.  Destiny Redeemed comes out in October, and Vasilije's story will be released in December. 

After that, nothing's written in stone, but I'm in the planning stage for another three book erotic romance series (maybe novel length this time) about three sisters who find love with some very interesting men.  It's shaping up to be paranormal romance unlike any I've ever written. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

18 & Over Book Blogger Giveaway Hop

Welcome to the 18 & Over Book Blogger Giveaway Hop!  There are a bunch of us participating, so make sure you hop around to everyone and enter to win some great prizes.  Here at my blog, I'm giving away a first prize and a second prize.  

Here's the lowdown:  The giveaway runs from September 15 through September 18.

To get one entry, simply follow my blog and leave a comment.  To earn more entries, you can do the following:

Follow me on
(1 extra entry-clicking link will open a new window)

Sign up for my newsletter (2 extra entries--sent out once a month, so no constant pestering)-Simply subscribe in the pink box to the left.

Remember, none of the extra entries are mandatory.  Choose as many or as few as you like. :)  Anyone who already follows me here and/or on Twitter or receives my newsletter just has to tell me so in the comment. :) But be an angel and add all the entries up for me in your comment.  Thanks so much! And be sure to include your email address so I can contact you if you win.  (Can't forget that!)

Okay, now on to the good stuff!  Here's what the winners get:

First prize: A signed paperback copy of Stolen Destiny, along with book swag (bookmarks and cover flats) and a $20 Amazon GC.

Second prize:  Ebook copies of two of my books, including the soon-to-be-released Destiny Redeemed, and a $10 Amazon GC.  And now with Kindlegraph you can get ebooks signed, so the winner of these two ebooks can get in on the signing action too.  Isn't technology great?

I will let choose the winners on September 19 and will contact the winners soon after. Good luck and happy hopping!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Tonya Kinzer Guest Post

Why We Read Those Forbidden Words…
     Since I love the Dom/sub, soft bondage and BDSM erotica, I think that is perfect to discuss here today! Those topics appeal to readers because first, they are taboo and people love to read what shouldn't be written. Better yet is the internal ecstasy the reader gets while they read those forbidden words that create even more forbidden thoughts! No it’s not a sin to feel that way, so stop it! (it is a sin to force those feelings on someone who doesn’t share that with you) It’s a beautiful feeling that can be satisfied by touching another individual, feeling the moisture on their skin, the increased heart rate, the darkening of their eyes as their pupils enlarge with the intense feelings and the smell that emanates from the body! Now where did I put that ice bag?
     Do you fall into that category? I sure hope so. Sneaking to read some of our books is part of the fun, not to mention the internal upheaval that goes on while we read. Our imaginations create vivid images of naked bodies; of women restrained while others torture their sexual needs and take them to the brink of orgasm! Oops, can I say that here? Too late now…it’s out, so let’s discuss that, too!
     First, I’m going back to the images that reading creates in our mind as well as our own growing need to have sex while we read or immediately afterward. The body heat intensifies, our juices begin to flow, some a bit more than others, we start to fidget in our chair or on the bed. This brings us to the one-handed readers and we know what they do! *wink*  mmmm….damn! Perhaps more of you are one-handed readers than we know about! As authors, we LOVE that group!
     Now let’s move on to what some like to read about. Our mind goes crazy at the thought of a naked woman…or man…being tied to a table or a bed or over the horse as her Dom slowly touches her body everywhere. She’s forbidden to speak or whimper a sound. His touch is light, teasing, tormenting, making her want that powerful release that explodes in her body, heats and satisfies, yet creates an even stronger need for more. He caresses her skin with oil, massaging her breasts, her thighs and….yep he goes there too, only to feel how much of her juices have seeped for him.
     Do I have your attention yet? Take those feelings and put them to work in your own relationship and make your partner feel as though they are the only one in your universe. Some of us have lost that spark but it can be relit. You have the power to create those same sensations in their body. Pay attention to what touch makes them crazy and where that area is because it’s different for each one of us. As their excitement increase, so will yours…because you know you have created a need in them that has to be completed and only YOU can do that. Go for it! Give your partner the pleasure they deserve and in turn, you receive more pleasure, I promise you! Maybe they secretly want the same thing but have been afraid to let you know. Break the ice…you may be pleasantly surprised!
     I hope you take the time to check out my series, titled The Boss’s Pet. I do include loving relationships along with adventure into unknown territory for my heroine. Follow her and she just might help YOU open yourself up to ask for what you want in a relationship. I have a hot excerpt (  from book three, Sharing Among Friends, on my website ( ) as well as the book trailer for the series. It gives you a taste of what may be coming up in book four, coming soon to an eStore near you! Thank you for stopping in and I hope you continue to enjoy those forbidden reads! Muah!

Thanks so much, Tonya!  Juicy stuff!  And for readers, Tonya is giving away one of her terrific looking mousepads to one lucky commenter. So go ahead and leave a comment to be in the running. Contest ends on September 14.

Sunday, September 11, 2011


I've been watching the news for the past hour, mostly crying at the speeches the victims' families have been giving and remembering that day ten years ago.  I can still remember sitting in my living room in my old house watching the news that morning.  I saw the second plane fly into Tower 2, and I can still remember the stunned feeling I had thinking about all the people in those buildings. 

I remember the incredible silence from no airplanes flying overhead for days after 9-11.  It's strange, but that still sticks in my mind. 

Ten years have passed since that horrible day.  My son, who was just a five year old little boy, is now a fifteen year old sophomore in high school.  I think about all the children who look back on that day as the day they lost a parent.  Ten years have passed and the shock has worn off for me.  Now all that's left is sadness. 

Friday, September 9, 2011

Friday Fun

It's Friday again!  Yay! Between the fires in Texas and the flooding in the Northeast, I think everyone is looking forward to better times ahead, and what better way to get that started than with the weekend.

I'm over at Whipped Cream's blog today with a post titled, "In Defense of The Villain."  I freely admit it:  I love the bad boy.  In fact, I find writing heroes far more challenging than I do villains.  Today's post is about one of my favorite villains from my stories, Amon Kalins.  Gorgeous, powerful, and sexy as all hell, he's so good at being bad.  Not that being bad is his only draw, but he's definitely a man who can be the bad boy when he wants to.  Mmmmm....

The challenge in Destiny Redeemed was to make the bad boy the hero, which isn't always a transition they make well.  I believe I met that challenge with Amon's story.  No character is all bad, or all good, for that matter, so this new book shows his other side a bit more.  But a being so powerful and so used to getting what he wants isn't going to be your typical hero. 

Click on over and check out my take on villains and what makes them so much fun.
And have a great weekend! 

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

What's New?

What's new with you out there in blogland? 

The weather here is all rain, rain, rain.  The first day of school for some students is cancelled because of flooding, and then I see someone I'm friends with on Facebook has lost her house to the wildfires. It's been a wild weather season. So many people are dealing with the effects of weather, and I hope things get better for them soon.

Personally, I hate rainy days, even though I tend to get so much more writing done on those days, as opposed to sunny days. It's odd because ordinarily I would say rain depresses me, but when it comes to writing, that's not the case.  But I have to go to work today, so the rain is doing its depressing job right now. 

I went to see Apollo 18 the other night, which was just odd.  I don't know if I'd say it was horrible, but it wasn't my type of movie. I'm not someone who tends to see a lot of movies, but this is the second one in as many weeks.  Last week I saw Fright Night.  I'm not a horror chick, so this was definitely not my usual fare.  That movie was eh.  Colin Farrell is yummy on most occasions, and visually he worked ok, but the story was t-h-i-n.  All I could think as I watched it was that the original story for this film must have been a novella--and a small one at that.

On each occasion, I regretted that I hadn't gone with my first choice: Conan.  Love that guy!

I'm off to home school before my son has to visit the orthopedic surgeon again.  Still no definitive judgment on the knee, but he's feeling better, so that's good.  Tonight's a big writing night because I don't work on Thursdays, so I'm looking forward to completing up to about 50% of Vasilije's story.  I'm feeling very good about that since my goal is to have it completed and to my editor by mid-November. Then tomorrow, after school with my son, I'll be doing more structural edits on Destiny Redeemed. I'm beginning Chapter 16 and am about 60% complete on edits, so I'm right on schedule. I'm working to get the ms to my editor by September 14, so things look good.

Finally, check out the incredible banner my girl Talina made for Destiny Redeemed. I'm in love!  Thanks, Talina! 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Happy Labor Day!

I've been working my tail off all weekend, so today I'm taking Labor Day off and relaxing.  50% of Destiny Redeemed has been structurally edited, and Vasilije's story has 30% complete. The man to the left is very much what I might imagine Vasilije to look like. I usually like my men a bit bigger and badder looking-see the cover of Destiny Redeemed- but this man is beautiful. Enjoy!  :D

The tour schedule for Masquerade is out, and it looks to be a great one!  Check out the stops at these blogs:

September 19 - Kay Dee Royal (Giveaway/Excerpt)
September 20 - As the Pages Turn (Giveaway/Review)
September 21 - Reading Romances (Review/Interview)
September 22 - Romancing the Book (Interview/Giveaway)
September 23 - Pimpin’ Reads (Giveaway/Excerpt)
September 26 - Erotica for All (Giveaway/Review)
September 27 - Release Notes (Guest Post/Review)

I'm already thinking of a blog tour for Destiny Redeemed, but that's still in the works.  When it gets firmed up, I'll be sure to blog about it to let you know the great bloggers who are involved.

Okay, now it's time to enjoy the last holiday of the summer.  Umbrella drinks for everyone, especially you up there, hard working man. He's working hard. He just makes it look easy.  Thanks to Cheryl Brooks and her fantastic site for the pic of this unbelievable hottie. Check out her page, but beware: if you don't like the male form in all its glory, it isn't for you.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A Little Happy Dance

I've been writing and editing all weekend, but I stopped for just a bit yesterday and found a link in my email to a review of Masquerade by author Lucy Felthouse on Blogcritics.  Among other praise, she called it, "A delicious read."  Thank you, Lucy!  I'm glad you enjoyed it.  Know what's even better than that?  The review ended up on the Seattle online newspaper Seattle PI.  Wow!  An even bigger thank you to Lucy!  Check her blog out here for more about her.

Joe Konrath had another great post up yesterday. In it, he argued about not caring what people think either way, good or bad.  Essentially, critics are everywhere and as quickly as some bring you up, others will bring you down.  I have to admit, for today, I'm doing a little happy dance, not so much about the review, which I love, but for the chance for people to find me.  I've worked very hard all summer to get myself out "there."  It doesn't happen overnight, so I've made it part of my goals as an author to promote my books well. 

The main problem is that I'm not a natural self-promoter, so at times it's difficult.  My friends and family thought I should title this post, "I'm Nationwide!", but for me, that seems too much.  I'm constantly worried about being too much in people's faces and much rather hang out on the sidelines and people watch.  That doesn't work when you want to get others to know your work, though, so even when I felt totally overexposed, I continued on. 

I'm happy I did. 

I'm off to get more of Amon's story edited and write more of Vasilije's, but for my friends and family, here's some ZZ Top. They're nationwide. ;) 

Friday, September 2, 2011

Weekend Creation Hop and New Excerpt From Masquerade

So it's Labor Day weekend (well, almost) and summer's over. It's been a busy one, hasn't it?  We've got a new month and lots of great things will be happening in the fall, so let's try not to mourn summer too much. 

I'm participating in my dear friend Shah's Weekend Creation Hop, which I mean to do each week but then get wrapped up in all sorts of other things and forget.  Well, not this week! 

And since her hop is a call to creativity, I'm including a new excerpt from Masquerade today.  In this scene, Annelisa is brainstorming with her sister about how to find a way to make the awful Earl of Swindon not want to marry her.

Annelisa lay across her bed, her arm covering her eyes. “Cecile, think. There has to be a way.”
“You don’t think father will do this to me, do you? I couldn’t bear being stuck with an old man!”
“Cecile!” Annelisa sat up and glared at her younger sister.
“I’m sorry! It’s just so awful.”
“That’s exactly why we need to figure out a way to make the honorable earl not want me.”
Cecile sat down beside her sister, puffed her cheeks, and blew the air out in frustration. “What if you became big and fat? Men never like that.”
“In one month? I don’t think even Pippa could make enough pies to achieve that.”
“Could we make you uglier?”
Annelisa leveled her gaze at her sister and squinted her eyes.
“I didn’t mean that you’re already ugly! Don’t look at me like that. You know what I meant!”
“I know, but this isn’t helping. I don’t think Thornton Sutcliffe would care if I got fat or ugly. As far as I can tell, he barely noticed I’m even human.”
Annelisa fell back onto the bed in disgust. Cecile meant well, but they were getting nowhere. She was missing something right under her nose.
“Do you know anything about him? Oh, Anne! How could father do this?”
“I know very little of him, and what I do know, I don’t like a bit.”
“Other than his shortness, stoutness, and surliness, what else do you know that could help you?”
Annelisa buried her face in a pillow. “Cecile, there’s nothing else to know. He’s odious.”
“Oh, don’t cry! There’s got to be something that will make him call off the marriage.”
The two sisters remained silent until Annelisa sat bolt upright. “I’ve got it! I know what I have to do!”
“What? Tell me!”
“You must promise you’ll tell no one, Cecile. No one can know what I’m going to do.”
“I promise! Now tell me!”
“The earl seems to think it’s of vital importance that I’m a virgin. So all I have to do is not be one.”
Cecile leapt to her feet in shock at her sister’s implication. “Annelisa Fielding, you can’t! It’s improper!”
“What’s improper is that in this day and age a woman is still traded like cattle. Relinquishing my maidenhead is a small price to pay for my freedom.”
“I don’t know about this,” Cecile said as she began to wring her hands.
Annelisa rose to face her sister. “I need to know you’ll keep my secret, Cecile.”
Her sister hesitated a moment but then nodded. “I promise I won’t tell another soul as long as I live.”
“Good. Now I just need to decide who will be my comrade in arms. Any suggestions?”
“You can’t do that with any of the men we know. It would be a scandal.”
Pacing, Annelisa nodded in agreement. “I know. There must be someone who would be willing to keep our coupling a secret.”
“Perhaps you can find someone at the Stewarts’ masquerade ball tomorrow night. There are sure to be many possible men attending.”
Annelisa stopped and considered her sister’s idea. The season’s first masquerade ball would be perfect. Everyone would be wearing masks, and if she wore her hair differently, her choice wouldn’t know it was her.
“But most of the guests are from our social circle.”
“Not everyone.”
“Annelisa, who do you have in mind?”
“Someone who is respectable, honorable, and best of all, soon to be leaving Britain.”
Cecile grabbed her sister’s arm to stop her from pacing. “Who?”
A broad smile lit up Annelisa’s face. “He’s perfect. I just hope he’s not too honorable.”
“Annelisa! Who?”
“Count Nikolai Shetkolov.”
“Father’s friend?”
“Yes.” Annelisa saw the shock registered on Cecile’s face. “What’s the problem?”
“Do you even know him?”
“What do I need to know? He’s an appealing man, always charming, obviously intelligent as he’s a diplomat for the Russian Tsar, and if I’m not mistaken, he told Father he would be returning home soon.”
“But isn’t he a bit older than you?”
“Cecile, I’m not choosing a husband. I’m choosing a lover for one night to eliminate the one thing the Earl of Swindon believes is worthwhile about me.”

I hope everyone has a great weekend!