Gabrielle Bisset

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Saint at RomCon and I'm On The Airwaves Tonight

Today is a busy day.  Saint is over at RomCom's erotic blog chatting with Chris, the fantastic woman who runs the blog, so I want to make sure I stop over there and see that he's behaving.  Saint can be anything but a saint sometimes. ;) One lucky commenter will win a $5 Amazon Gift Card, so stop over there and say hi.

Tonight I'm on Elaine Raco Chase's radio talk show.  I'm a little nervous.  I've done this before and it went beautifully (thank you, Desmond!), so I just have to remember that.  I'm scheduled to be on from 8:45-9:05.  Readers can listen in and even call in to the show at

Today is also the last day to grab Blood Avenged at the sale price of $.99 at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Grab it and begin the Sons of Navarus series.  You won't be disappointed.

And tomorrow marks the one year anniversary of my being a published author, so be sure to stop back for that post.  It's been such a wonderful year! 

Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

#WIP Wednesday

It's Wednesday again, and that means a little from my current WIP.  I've been going full tilt with Blood Spirit in the hopes of having an early fall (read: early September) release instead of a late fall release. Terek and Ilona have been very helpful in this, and for that, I'm very thankful.  Chapter 10 is complete, and as I finish Chapter 11 today or tomorrow, I'm making plans to take the story to Morocco. 

Moving the story from Spain to Morocco adds another delicious, exotic flavor that is very much representative of Terek.  Although he's Spanish, he's experienced the world outside Spain for many years.  Morocco is just one place he's spent a good bit of time that's left an impression on him.

So to get in the Moroccan spirit, here are some pics of that beautiful land and Terek. Enjoy!
Morocco, just a hop, skip, and a jump away from Spain

Monday, May 28, 2012

Alphas and Their Ladies

I'm over at the wonderful Malia Mallory's blog today talking about why I write about Alphas, so stop over and take a look.  If you love Alphas too, join in on the conversation and let me know why. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

While I usually spend my time talking about the heroes of my books, today the leading ladies are also front and center.  They were showcased at Heartthrob Haven recently where Sasa interviewed Solenne, and the girls let their hair down to give readers a better feel for who they are.  Stop over and comment for a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card.  While their men are less than friendly toward one another, Sasa and Solenne are good friends.  Maybe some of that will rub off on Vasilije and Saint?

And after you get to know the heroines, you can still get both Blood Avenged and Blood Betrayed for less than $5 at Amazon and Barnes and Noble through the end of May. 

Hot vampire heroes, sexy heroines, and a price you can't beat.  What better holiday sale is there for a romance reader?

Friday, May 25, 2012

1st Chapter Of Blood Betrayed On My Website

This week's Paranormal Romance Friday is a special one because of the release of my newest book, Blood Betrayed, yesterday.  Another huge thank you to all the people who helped me get the word out about my newest baby. :) 

And to give readers a real taste of Saint, the hero from Blood Betrayed, the first chapter of the book is available on my website at

Be sure to scroll down after reading and check out the reviews so far.  5 hearts from Riverina Romantics--Megan loved it!  And a 5 rating/Alpha Howl from Nookmom over at Bitten By Paranormal Romance .  And just this morning a third review came in--a 5 book rating from Selena at The Enchanted Book, who calls Blood Betrayed one of her "new favorites." 

So stop over at my website to take a look at the first chapter of Blood Betrayed.  But be warned:  one taste of Saint won't be enough!

Have a wonderful Friday, and to my US readers, have a great Memorial Day weekend!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Blood Betrayed Official Release Day!

Yes, I know the book has been up on Amazon and Barnes and Noble for a few days.  The best laid plans of indies mean nothing to the big boys.  But that's okay because today is the official release date for Blood Betrayed! 

This book was a labor of love for me.  Saint was a difficult character to write at times, and I'd been spoiled by his predecessor, who had been very easy to get down on paper.  Saint's a deeper soul, so many nights the writing was emotional and exhausting.  I'm very proud of what came from all those nights, though.

When I finally knew that Blood Betrayed would be released today, I contacted the bloggers I love the most and asked them if they'd spread the word.  I can't tell you how thrilled I was when they said yes!  It says a lot about people that they want to spread someone else's great news, and I want to thank all the wonderful bloggers who are helping me get the word out today about this new release.  It's so terrific that they'd do this for me, and I appreciate it so much.  Some are offering a spicy excerpt (18+ over eyes on that one) and others are offering the more family friendly PG-13 excerpt. In addition, Sharon over at I Smell Sheep has a fantastic new diner opening up over there and Vasilije and Saint are the first dishes on the menu.  Definitely check that out! And there are giveaways too at a couple of the blogs.

And to celebrate the official release date, I've put another excerpt up on my website--the ENTIRE FIRST CHAPTER is there to give you a taste of Saint and Blood Betrayed.  Visit to read that.

Here's the list of those fabulous people helping me get the word out about Blood Betrayed. 

Felicity Heaton
Talina at Bookin' It
Megan at Riverina Romantics (she has a review up already too!)
Michelle at WereVampsRomance
Nikki at Close Encounters
Selena at The Enchanted Book
Dana at Readaholics Anonymous
Jennifer James
Laurie at Bitten by Paranormal Romance
Sharon at I Smell Sheep (Saint and Vasilije are on the menu here)
Nat at Reading Romances
Liz at Fictional Candy
Tanya at All Things Books
Shah at WordsInSync
Silvia at Darkest Sins
Buffy Kennedy
RaeBeth at The Writing World
Jess at The Romanceaholic

Thanks to everyone who was so great to help! 

Blood Betrayed is available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. And if you haven't read the first book in the Sons of Navarus series, Blood Avenged, you can grab it for just $.99 until the end of May at Amazon and Barnes and Noble too!

Have a wonderful Thursday!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Blood Betrayed's Heroine: Solenne

Heroines are a dicey thing for me in many stories. I find a lot of  heroines to actually grate on my nerves. They're either too sweet or too feisty, so I'm left feeling like whatever happens they had it coming.  That sounds bad, but when a smarmy heroine has bad happen to her, I often think, "Well, if you hadn't let him run all over you, this might not have happened."  And the constantly fighting with the hero type of heroine is even worse. That's not creating sexual tension for me.  It's often just getting on my nerves to the point that I end up loving the hero, even if he's a bastard, because he has to put up with such a shrew.

When I began working on Blood Betrayed, I decided immediately that my heroine had to be strong, but there would be none of that pain in the ass heroine business. 

Her name means "solemn" or "sun" and either work for her character.  She's the calm that Saint has always sought but won't allow himself to have, and she possesses a warmth and light that no one else has around him. Sometimes names are just good because of the way they sound, but Solenne's was always intended to be meaningful.

She's one of those characters that grew on me.  I liked her from the beginning, but as I began to really flesh out her traits and back story, I found myself really feeling a kind of affinity with her. She's strong, a trait I admire in both males and females, and even with all that Saint forces her to deal with, along with what she has to do to help the Sons, she still stands strong in the toughest of times.

I think the key to Solenne is that she's a woman in love.  That the man she loves hasn't forgiven her for almost 100 years is simply something she accepts and intends to overcome.  I like that in her.  That he's stubborn and brooding doesn't stop her; in fact, she loves him just the way he is.  That I really like. 

When I set out to find a picture of what she looks like, I stumbled upon the one I used for this post.  It's perfect.  She's sexy, strong, and has red hair (well, it's reddish in black and white).  But beneath all that is a gentleness that is very much like what the character Solenne has inside her.

Heroines can be difficult for me to write because I feel like I'm always working to avoid the smarmy on one side and the pain in the ass on the other while trying to create someone unique.  In Blood Betrayed, Solenne is neither extreme and very unique.  I like that in her.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Blood Betrayed's Hero: Saint

When I began sketching out ideas for the second book in the Sons of Navarus series, I knew I had to make the hero someone very much not like Vasilije, the hero (so to speak) of Blood Avenged.  I wanted a male who was deeper than his predecessor.  That was a definite.  I also needed him to have a back story that reflected that.

It took me a while before Saint was fully formed as a character.  Physically, I knew exactly what he looked like.  That was easy.  The moment I saw the pic below, I said (I think out loud), "That's Saint."

In a world of bodies, this image represented the idea I had of Saint perfectly.  Hard, pushed to the limit, and cut up.  In fact, out of all eight of the Sons of Navarus, Saint is the best built.  Ramiel is bigger, but Saint is the one with the hardest body. 

Now that I had the physical idea of him set (all the way down to the very short hair Saint has in the book), I needed to flesh out why he was a man who pushed his physical limits.  Thus the back story was born. 

Saint was turned on the battlefield at the Battle of the Somme in the First World War in 1916.  He was a young man in his twenties named Declan then, and he and his brother, Teagan, were turned by two vampires, Kir and Vasilije.  Declan had always been his brother's protector, even promising their mother when they left to go to war that he'd watch over his younger brother. But that changes when Vasilije makes Teagan one of his favorites, and Declan is left on the outside with a sire who cares little for his vampires. 

Some of the most enjoyable non-romantic writing for me in Blood Betrayed are the scenes between Saint and Vasilije.  There's a lot of dislike between the two men, and their scenes particularly show Saint's feelings toward the man he calls the "Romanian." 

And then there was the reason Saint was given that nickname--his refusal to sleep with vampire women and instead go exclusively with human women.  To some in the vampire world, this made Saint a traitor, but to others, he's just odd.  The name Saint is meant to be an insult, as if there was something wrong with him because he won't sleep with vampires.  But readers will find that much of what makes up Saint is wrapped up in that choice to avoid vampire females. 

When I sent the book to my editor, I'd already heard from my betas about how much they loved Saint, some even more than Vasilije.  I told her that I was concerned, however.  Vasilije had been such a strong character, and I was worried readers wouldn't be able to move past him.  As a great editor does, she reminded me that it wasn't my style to write eight men cut from the same Vasilije cloth.  Then she was quiet for days about Blood Betrayed and I thought, "Uh oh.  She loved Vasilije (and I mean LOVED) and she doesn't like Saint. That's not good."

A few days later she sent back the book with the message, "I didn't think you could write a hero who I could love more than Vasilije, but you did." 

I freely admit I fall in love with every hero I write.  Hell, I've fallen in love with a villain or two.  And I'm sure I'll say something similar to what I'm about to say in the future about Terek or the other Sons I'll write, but as I write this, I can honestly say there isn't a hero I've written who I like better than Saint.  Sure, Vasilije is hotter than all hell, and Amon from Destiny Redeemed is incredibly sexy as he's almost as powerful as a god.  And I can't forget Nikolai, the smartest hero I've had the pleasure of writing.  But there's something about Saint--that soul inside him that can't forget the past and tortures himself for the mistakes he made so long ago--that makes him irresistible to me. 

I do love me a brooding man.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

#NewRelease :Blood Betrayed, Sons of Navarus 2

To celebrate the release of the second Sons of Navarus book, all week I'm going to be blogging about Blood Betrayed.  I'll be talking about the characters and other things that I love about the book. Officially, the release is on Thursday, May 24, but Amazon and Barnes and Noble gave me a surprise by having the book on sale already. Yay!

I was asked in an interview what makes this series different than other vampire romance series.  It's a great question since there are so many of them out there.  What makes the Sons of Navarus different is that while it's a romance series at its heart, there is a very strong non-romantic plot that will run through all the books until the war with the Archons is over.

That's right.  There's a definite end to this series. 

But for now, I'm thrilled to say that the second book of the Sons of Navarus series is here.  Check it out at Amazon and Barnes and Noble

Have a great Monday!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Win A Pre-Release Copy of Blood Betrayed!

To celebrate the release of the second book in the Sons of Navarus series, I'm giving away one ebook copy of Blood Betrayed BEFORE it's released on May 24.  Just go to the Sons of Navarus Facebook page, like the guys' page, and leave a comment on the Giveaway post.  One winner will be chosen by random Sunday night, May 20 at 11pm.  The more you comment, the better your chances are of winning.  Be sure to check out the blurb and excerpt in the Notes section of the page too for the lowdown on Saint's book, in addition to interviews with Saint and Vasilije!

Good luck! 

#Paranormalromance Friday

This Friday I want to give some time to a friend and fellow author, Felicity Heaton.  Her newest book, Masquerade, is out this week, so check it out!

(Vampires Realm Romance Series #10)

By F E Heaton

Ten years have passed since Sophis and Vivek, two vampires of the Venia bloodline, came close to death at the hands of twin hunters Aleksis and Izabella Romanov. The events of that night turned Sophis and Vivek against each other, shattering their close friendship and driving them apart.

Now, on the eve of a centenary Creator Day masquerade and at a time when things between them are dangerously close to separating them forever, they uncover a small army of vampire hunters in Saint Petersburg, led by their nemeses, Aleksis and Izabella.

With the safety of the rulers of the seven pure vampire bloodlines in their hands and their chance for vengeance hanging in the balance, can Sophis and Vivek face their past and overcome their differences? Will they realise their true feelings for each other before it’s too late or will the hunters finally claim their lives as their deadly plot to destroy the bloodlines unfolds?

Books in the Vampires Realm romance series stand alone and do not need to be read in order to gain maximum enjoyment

Learn more about the series by visiting the official Vampires Realm website

Masquerade is available now in e-book from:
Author's website Kindle Store Kindle Store
All Romance eBooks

Coming soon in ebook to BN Nook, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Sony, and also in paperback

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Author Chris Redding Guest Post

Please welcome author Chris Redding to the blog today!

Make your prose so vivid the story will be visually compelling.

Hm. Think about that for a moment.

I’ll wait while you ponder it.


Your story should be three-dimensional in the readers mind. It should be a movie that only the reader can see. The reader needs to be inside the story with all the characters.

As you live your life, you are bombarded with details and sensations. In a story the characters are. The reader should experience the story just like the characters. The writer must convey the sights, sounds, smells and emotions of the story to make it vivid for the reader. Anyone who picks up the books must be able to “see” the story.

Jason J. Tomaric in The Power Filmmaking Kit said, “The foundation of a good story is inspiration, research, and the ability to develop an idea into a commercially viable product that audiences will want to see.” This is the case with a book also.

What kind of book are you writing? You should know this from the beginning. Are your writing for yourself or an audience? Do you want to make money doing this?

Write what you know. Write what you’ve seen, experienced, or lived. How can you write about something you’ve never experienced? Ask someone who has. I’ve never actually been in the middle of a fire, but I’ve written about it because my husband has been inside of many burning buildings.

The point is, scenes must resonate with the audience which happen is you know the truth of the situation. The material will be strong because you’ve lived it whether on your own or through someone else.

So before you can write, go live.

This is from a workshop: Lights! Camera! Bestseller!

Chris Redding lives in New Jersey with her husband, two kids, one dog and three rabbits. She graduated from Penn State with a degree in Journalism. When she isn’t writing or giving workshops, she works part time for her local hospital. Her latest thriller is Blonde Demolition, available at Amazon

You can find Chris on the web:

Back cover text for Blonde Demolition

You just can't hide from the past...

Mallory Sage lives in a small, idyllic town where nothing ever happens. Just the kind of life she has always wanted. No one, not even her fellow volunteer firefighters, knows about her past life as an agent for Homeland Security.

Former partner and lover, Trey McCrane, comes back into Mallory's life. He believes they made a great team once, and that they can do so again. Besides, they don't have much choice. Paul Stanley, a twisted killer and their old nemesis, is back.

Framed for a bombing and drawn together by necessity, Mallory and Trey go on the run and must learn to trust each other again―if they hope to survive. But Mallory has been hiding another secret, one that could destroy their relationship. And time is running out.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

#WIP Wednesday

I've been so busy writing Blood Spirit that I almost forgot WIP Wednesday. I'd forget my head if it weren't attached to my body! :)

Since Blood Spirit is taking up so much of the space in my head, I might as well stick with that book for this post.  I'm spending the day researching Spain in the 1300s, particularly names and the political landscape.  The hero of Blood Spirit, Terek, was a man who lived in the 1300s.  He had a wife and child, but after they died, he entered the monastery to dedicate his life to the church as a monk.  While these details won't be the main focus of the book, they make up the foundation of who he was that's so important to understanding who he is now.

I find research to be a lot of fun, but I'm a history geek, so this is like a vacation for me. :)  I know the outline of the history of the Iberian Peninsula during this time period, but the finer details are what I'm looking for today.  For me, this is what adds that genuine flavor to a story. 

One of the first things I have to do is give him a name.  Terek is the name his sire gave him, but he had a different name as a human. Sure, I can choose any name that sounds Spanish, but I want to be accurate, so I have to spend some time deciding what part of what we today call Spain Terek lived in.  Since at the time there really was no "Spain" to speak of but instead a collection of kingdoms, both Christian and the remaining Islamic ones, the choice I make will then determine a number of other issues I'll deal with later in the book.

I'm off to travel back in time to 1300s Spain.  Enjoy!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Sinful Sirens

Hi!  Welcome to my spot on the Sinful Sirens Giveaway Hop hosted by Under the Covers Book Blog and Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews.  My job as an erotic romance author means I get to count myself as a sinful siren. Sounds sexy! This hop is all about scorching hot reads, so get ready to find some seriously hot stories in your travels around the participating blogs.

Here at my blog I'm giving away a print copy of my hottest book out, Book #1 of the Sons of Navarus series: Blood Avenged, and just in time because Book #2 in the Sons of Navarus series, Blood Betrayed, is set for release on May 24. Perfect timing! (Click on the title for reviews and a smokin' hot excerpt from the book.)
So what do you have to do to win one of the hottest vampires out there (or at least his story)?  The only mandatory entry is to leave me a comment with your email address.  However, if you want to increase your chances, I'd love it if you'd do the extra entries in the Rafflecopter thing, especially liking the Sons of Navarus Facebook page (where I do other giveaways of the Sons swag and books).  The giveaway is open internationally, so an email gets you entered.  The winner will be chosen by random after the giveaway has ended on May 20 and will be contacted by email. Be sure to hop around to all the other great blogs, and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Writing A Series

Before I say anything else, I have to admit I love series. If I enjoy a book, it's so great to find out there are more like it (or more coming).  I don't tend to write the massive tomes--I'm just not someone who enjoys reading huge books, so I would never write one. My longest, Destiny Redeemed, is almost 85K words, and that's about as long as I can go.  Since I don't write long books but have big ideas, the series is a perfect structure for me.

I think what I like most about the format of the series is that I can grow characters before and after their own books.  For instance, I'm writing Blood Spirit now, and Vasilije is going through some trials that didn't work for his character until the third book in the series.  In the same fashion, Saint appears in this new book too, and what he's up to continues to show the kind of man he is. In addition, the series' villain that I introduced in Blood Betrayed, Marc Verrater, is back and readers will get even more of him in Book #3. (I love writing villains, so expect him to be deliciously bad!)

The series format particularly works for the Sons of Navarus because there are eight men in the Sons. All the individual stories wouldn't have fit into one tome, so it always had to be a series.  My goal has always been to publish two books a year, meaning by 2015, they'll all be out.  Someone asked me the other day if I know how it ends.  I do.  Everything has been plotted out, overall.  Individual romantic elements may change, but the major events in the series won't.  I know who dies, who lives, and how it ends.

Writing a series is hard work.  Don't get me wrong.  Everything might be plotted out, but to know that your complete story--likely more than 500K words--will take years can be a daunting feeling.  It's just as daunting to know that some readers who don't stay around won't understand why I include something in one book but leave it a loose end until later.  But that's what a series is about.  In for a penny, in for a pound.

My editor asked me if I knew what I would do after the Sons series is over.  I do.  That book sits in the back of my mind and knows it has six men standing in line before it (well, five since Terek is already getting his book).  It's not romance, which will mean a complete departure from the Sons and everything else I've ever published. (I write historical fiction in addition to romance.) But until then, I'm a series writer. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

#Paranormalromance Friday

Another week gone and another week closer to Blood Betrayed's release. I have to admit I'm getting the release day jitters as May 24 comes closer and closer.  In celebration of that book's release, Blood Avenged is on sale for $.99 now at Amazon and Barnes and Noble, so if you haven't checked that one out yet, grab it so you're ready for when Blood Betrayed comes out. (Click on the title for buy links.)

And here's the print cover for the paperback book of Blood Betrayed! I think it came out so fantastic.  Once again, thanks to Talina for a gorgeous cover.  Click on the image for a closer look.  The paperback should be available in time for the May 24 release too!

Also on the paranormal romance front is a new site called Vampire Book Realm.  This is a must-visit site for anyone who loves vampires, whether they be erotic romance vamps or straight up horror vamps.  I'm there with a page about Vasilije, Saint, and all the Sons of Navarus, so check it out.  Definitely a place for the vampire lover!

Finally, don't miss the giveaway over at the Sons of Navarus FB page this weekend.  One winner will win a Blood Avenged poster.  All you have to do to enter is ask Vasilije and Saint a question each on their interviews that are posted there. I'll draw the winner Sunday night.  Spread the word!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Is There A Problem At #Amazon

Today I hand the blog reins over to my day job colleague Simone.  For months she's been analyzing Amazon's ranking system and wonders about the health of the system.

Thank you to Gabrielle for letting me stop by today and thank you to the indie authors who have so wonderfully shared their numbers with me.

I have been an Amazon shopper for many years; buying books as long as I can remember and more recently expanding my music catalog. I am such an Amazon fan that I’ve actually gotten rid of Itunes.  Over the past year I have been communicating with independent authors, who have been selling books through Amazon, and we frequently discuss the “Amazon ranking/ratings algorithm,” which of course is a proprietary secret.  Some who follow Amazon's rankings closely believe that they have cracked the algorithm, but say it does change from time to time.  I would need to see equations or even just an equation to believe the algorithm has been cracked, but can this algorithm alone be blamed for the recent anomalies in the rankings on the Amazon US website?  The anomalies in the Amazon US rankings have been attributed to many things, such as KDP which came online at the end of 2011, though I believe that the anomalies that have been occurring with the rankings at the Amazon US website are really just the tip of the iceberg, in terms of Amazon’s website.  These rankings seem to be based on sales and on how long the book has been on the market, but recently (over the past 5 months, actually since KDP) some authors have seen sales drop from the thousands per day to the tens per day, and some even say their books have disappeared from the Amazon website. Authors are wracking their brains, desperately trying to figure out what could have gone wrong.  Asking themselves many questions, such as, “Is the ranking system based on the number of likes or tags, and why are my sales faltering?” 

     Studying the situation analytically, it seems that while there may be a problem with the algorithm, there may be a much larger problem with Amazon’s website, in general. Imagine you are sitting at home and see a book that you would like to purchase, and you are a frequent shopper so you hit the click to buy button and the book is sent to your Kindle. The one button click that you just made causes many events to occur behind the scenes, all of which are handled by computers programed by Amazon workers to do certain things. For instance, I click the button to buy a book, and not only are my credit card automatically charged and my purchase recorded for Amazon’s files, but the author and/or publishing house’s account must be credited for the specific book purchased. Then once that information is in the system the algorithm can be updated with the latest purchasing information, but what happens if something goes wrong on Amazon’s side at the beginning of this chain of events? I click to purchase the book I want and it gets quickly delivered to my Kindle and I am overjoyed at the ease of shopping, but what if when I clicked, the sale didn’t register properly on Amazon’s end. They gave me the book, but that information didn’t get to the author’s account so the sale wasn’t counted. The author just lost money and it didn’t help the author’s ranking.  Even worse though from Amazon’s perspective, what if when I clicked to make the purchase for one book Amazon’s software made a mistake and credited the author for ten books or even one hundred books? If this information hits the algorithm, now an author who sold ten books in a day suddenly believes they have sold hundreds and they are soaring in the rankings. 

I have the following questions for Amazon:
Are the authors who sell through Amazon who have seen swings in sales and ranking approaching Amazon regarding these anomalies?
If there is a problem with the website and the software, is Amazon keeping mum about the problems because of the ramifications of the glitches in the software? For instance, is it cheaper for a billion dollar company to pay the author, who thinks they’ve sold a thousand books at 99 cents, the money they believe they are owed or risk damage to their brand name by admitting they have a glitch in their system, which would hurt buyer/seller confidence? If we do the math, an independent author who sells a thousand books a month at 99 cents makes 35 cents on each sale, which is approximately $350 for the month, which is a pittance compared to what Amazon pulls in each month. Even if 10,000 authors where over-credited for a thousand, 99 cent books for a few months that only amounts to $3.5 million a month.  Compared to the damage to Amazon’s reputation and the financial loss of a class-action lawsuit, paying a few people a tiny fraction of what the company earns a month seems like a no-brainer.

There are a few things that still need to be investigated:

First and foremost, am I onto something here? I freely admit that my evidence is mostly anecdotal. My evidence comes from the following sources: authors on different web groups discussing how their sales have fallen drastically in the past few months, author’s books disappearing from the Amazon US website, erratic changes in the rankings within the last few weeks, comparisons of sales of the same books on Amazon US and Amazon UK that show no real decrease in sales for the UK. (Amazon UK is a separate website with separate databases and separate algorithms.)

Bizarre fluctuations are being noted across the web.  If there is actually a problem akin to the one I propose above, then this leads me to ask the following questions:

·         Are author’s rankings changing drastically because Amazon is artificially trying to rectify the problems of the past few months?
At this point have the problems actually been fixed, and do these rankings mean anything anymore?
If this problem is not fixed at this point, what is Amazon going to do to solve the problem?
Is the problem more widespread than the book market? If authors are getting paid too much or too little, then maybe other venders are too.
Does Amazon actually owe some authors money, and how can they guarantee that everyone has been paid what they are owed?
Does Amazon realize that they have caused many authors mental anguish and financial loss, and not just because of book sales or the lack thereof, but advertising money improperly spent due to the ranking anomalies?

For the mega-company that is Amazon, if these problems are occurring and have been going on for months, then the ramifications could be devastating. This is just one take on the situation, but there seems to be a problem. One answer is clear: there needs to be more transparency in the business end of the indie publishing industry.

Thank you, Simone, for stopping by. I've never been one to check my rankings much, so I haven't noticed a drastic rise or fall in them.  But for the many authors I've been reading about for months who do, some answers would help immensely. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

#WIP Wednesday

Welcome to my new Wednesday meme, WIP Wednesday!  Each week, if I don't have something else like a giveaway hop or guest author scheduled, I'll give readers a taste of what I'm currently working on.  Sometimes it will be a snippet from the story, and other times it will be a facet of the story that I'm developing.

I figured I'd start off this new idea with the book I've been spending day and night with getting it ready for its May 24 release. Technically, Blood Betrayed is still a WIP since it hasn't officially released, so I'm going to give a little taste of Saint's story today.  This snippet is from Chapter 2 and gives a sense of how Saint is with his fellow Sons of Navarus. Enjoy!

Vasilije stepped forward with a look of inquisition on his face. "Where have you been?"
"It's been a long time since I was young enough to have a curfew, dad. Where I've been is my own fucking business. Now if you don't mind, the sun's about to come up and I'd like to go to my room in your vampire Holiday Inn."
As he attempted to move past Vasilije, Dante taunted him. "Have a nice night out, Saint? Find any poor peasant girls to take the edge off?"  
© 2012 Gabrielle Bisset

Stop by the Sons of Navarus FB page and like it to read more of Saint's story and for interviews and giveaways beginning this weekend to celebrate the new release!

Friday, May 4, 2012

My Sons of Navarus

Today is the last day of the Blood Avenged book tour.  It's been so great meeting readers and bloggers as I've been chatting about Vasilije and the other Sons.  Today, I'm at Reading Romances with the lovely Nat to end the tour, so stop by and say hi, and I'm over at Words of Wisdom from the Scarf Princess, so come on by and help me end the tour on a high note! 

As I get ready to release Book #2, Blood Betrayed, I now have the first four covers for the series complete.  The incredible Talina Perkins gets all the credit for how the series looks.  What an eye she has for design!  (She created the Blood Betrayed banner at the top of the page too.)  She took an image that was difficult to deal with (that Vasilije can be a devil) and made Blood Avenged's cover look perfect for the story inside. From Saint haunted about his past, to Terek's sexy spiritual vibe, to now Ramiel as the violent yet angelic Son, Talina nailed each cover perfectly.  So without further ado, here are the first four of the eight Sons of Navarus.


Saint-coming May 24

Terek-coming Fall 2012
Ramiel-coming 2013

Aren't they delicious?  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Author Tarah Scott Guest Post

What a beautiful blog you have Gabrielle! Thanks so much for hosting me today.

My latest paranormal release is a touch if time travel with lots of magic and voodoo, and an erotic love triangle. I did loads of research for this book, both on Scottish history as well as voodoo. Talk about a creepy subject! But creepy worked well for what I was going for in LABYRINTH.

Yes, magic exists. Not the backwater voodoo witches practice where Mississippi Deputy Sheriff Margot Saulnier grew up. But the age-old black magic a woman weaves around a man that draws him under her spell. The kind Margot’s best friend used to kill her husband…and get away with it.

Margot chases her friend to Scotland, determined to prove her guilty of murder. No one will stop Margot. Not the SAS agent sent to watch her…and not the Scottish lord legend says murders his lovers when they cannot free him from the spell that has imprisoned him in Castle Morrison for three hundred years.

He’s just a legend.

Chapter One

Murderers weren’t born. They were made. At least, that’s what Margot had told herself these last four years. She opened the door to Castle Morrison and stepped inside the small entryway. Her hand tightened on the strap of the duffel she carried. She’d left Mississippi behind fifteen hours ago and was now on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, about as far north as a person could get in the Scottish Highlands. The countryside was just as remote as Wilkinson County, and probably just as wild.
Gooseflesh crept across her arms with an unexpected desire to turn and head back home—back to her father, the job she’d left behind and the front porch swing that squeaked too loudly on sultry summer nights. Exhaustion, she told herself. That and the fact she was about to face a murderer.
She took three paces through the arched doorway into the reception area and stopped. Caterine Bowers, the new owner of Castle Morrison, stood alongside a young brunette behind a mahogany reception counter at the far end of the room.
Cat hadn’t changed in the four years since Margot had seen her. The boys back home had gone wild over her perfect thirty-six, twenty-four, thirty-six body. With lustrous, jet black hair that brushed her waist and the feminine walk she’d perfected, she’d fucked her way through half of Wilkinson County. Margot didn’t blame her for that. Hell, she’d had her share of those southern boys. It was the fact Cat had murdered Donny four years into their marriage—and gotten away with it—that Margot hated.
Cat’s invitation for Margot to visit her in Scotland offered the opportunity that had been lacking when Cat fled to L.A. six months after Donny’s death. Eighteen months later, Cat dropped off the radar. Margot couldn’t let that happen again—couldn’t let Cat murder again. And she would.
Cat looked up from the papers she and the brunette were studying. The emerald green eyes that had gotten her name shortened from Caterine to Cat lit up. Margot chilled. As Deputy Sheriff of Wilkinson County, she’d convinced criminals she was their friend in order to get their confessions. But none of those criminals had been her best friend…and none of them had murdered her husband—Margot’s cousin. So how was she going to hide the fact she was here to prove that Cat killed Donny?
Margot smiled. Cat skirted the counter and hurried toward her. Margot dropped the duffel and started forward. They met in the middle of the room and Cat pulled her into a warm hug. Margot relaxed as if embracing the same friend she’d shared everything with, from make-up to Jimmy Thornton in the twelfth grade.
Cat pulled back and looked into her face. “You look exhausted.”
Margot startled at hearing the clipped Yankee tones coming from Cat’s mouth. What had happened to her Mississippi drawl? The four years she’d been gone from Mississippi wasn’t nearly long enough to lose that southern inflection.
Margot gave a tired smile. “Beyond exhausted.”
Cat grinned. “Sorry, there are no direct flights from Wilkinson County to Scotland.”
“Wilkinson County?” Margot grunted. “There aren’t any direct flights from anywhere in Mississippi to Scotland.”
Cat slipped an arm around her shoulders. Margot forced herself not to stiffen when Cat gave her a squeeze.
“Come on, I’ll show you to your room.” Cat looked past Margot, and Margot glanced back to see her cab driver standing at the counter, her suitcase and duffel beside him on the floor.
“Hold on.” She started to pull free.
Cat’s arm tightened around her. “Never mind. Dahlia, see to him, will you please, and have Margot’s bags sent up right away.”
The brunette smiled and turned her attention to the driver.
Cat directed Margot across the foyer to a staircase on the left wall. “You’re going to love Morrison Castle,” Cat said. “There’s nothing like it in Wilkinson County.” She released Margot and went ahead of her up the stairs.
Margot followed, grimacing when the entrance disappeared around a hard right turn and the narrow stairwell closed in behind her like a coffin. Her legs moved as if slogging through mud and she released a tired breath when the stairs finally opened into a hallway that was expansive by comparison. Cat turned left.
Margot looked back at the slit in the stone wall that held the staircase. “Those stairs would challenge the most seasoned spelunker. How do people pass on them?”
Cat laughed. “The Scots are big on togetherness.”
Margot imagined two men coming face to face, backs pressed against opposite walls as they sidled past one another. If the men were anything like the large specimens she’d seen working the castle grounds, they would exchange more than just greetings.
“Staircases were built narrow,” Cat said, “so an enemy had to charge up one man at a time, which gave the defenders a chance to kill them before they reached the upper levels.”
They passed four doors before Cat stopped. “This is the last of the unrenovated rooms. I didn’t want you to have to worry about moving while you’re here.”
She opened the door and stepped inside. Margot followed, catching sight of the bed. The brandy colored quilt looked like heaven on earth. She halted, her attention riveted onto a painting that hung over the fireplace where a low fire burned. The painting’s three dimensional depiction of Castle Morrison made the picture feel as real as the wing backed chair sitting in front of the low burning fire in the fireplace.
Battlemented towers on each corner of the oblong castle rose above the keep’s three stories. Like a velvet caress, ivy crawled up the stone surrounding the heavy, central oak door. Sunlight glinted off narrow, stained glass windows as clear and vivid as newly cut glass.
“Damn,” Margot breathed.
“Beautiful, isn’t it?” Cat asked.
“Magnificent. Who’s the artist?”
“Unknown. The picture’s three hundred years old.”
“Three hundred? But that’s impossible. It’s so…”
“Perfect?” Cat said.
“That’s one way of putting it.”
Margot crossed to the fireplace. The castle came into sharper focus as if she had hit the zoom button on her web browser. “The detail’s amazing.” She reached a hand to touch the ivy, then thought better of it. Three hundred year old paintings weren’t meant to be touched. She faced Cat. Hair on the back of her neck stood on end and she recognized the feeling of being watched. That’s what happened when you stood in the presence of a killer.
A knock sounded on the door.
“Your luggage,” Cat said. “Come in,” she called.
The door opened and a young man entered carrying Margot’s luggage. He murmured a hello, then lifted the suitcase onto the stand to the left of the door and set the duffel on the carpet beside it.
He faced them. “Will there be anything else?”
“Hold on, sugar.” Margot started toward the duffel where she kept her money, but Cat lifted a hand.
“No tipping here at Castle Morrison,” she said.
“I don’t mind.”
Cat shook her head. “The caliber of guests who stay here don’t tip.”
“That rich?” Margot asked, as if she didn’t already know the answer. Castle Morrison was a new brand of hotel where the obscenely wealthy squandered their money on the “seventeenth-century-Highland-experience.”
The richest of the rich,” Cat had boasted a week ago when she called to invite Margot to Scotland.
Scottish castles didn’t come cheap—Margot had checked. Castle Morrison sold for three-hundred and seventy-two thousand. Total renovations would set Cat back a cool million, but she would make up the expense in the fees guests paid for the privilege of sleeping in a Scottish castle. A two-week stay ran sixteen thousand pounds—twenty-five thousand American dollars. Cat had a waiting list that stretched into next year. In the next twelve months, she stood to gross twenty-one million dollars.
Helluva business deal, Margot had noted after Cat’s call a week ago. But what woman bought a Scottish castle with the money she inherited from the husband she murdered?
Even better: what murderer invited her cop friend to visit?
“Thank you, Toby.” Cat looked at the bellhop. “That’ll be all.”
He nodded and left, as Cat faced Margot. “You can put your things in the wardrobe.” Cat nodded to a modest built-in armoire on the far wall.
Margot released a sigh. “If I don’t get some rest I’ll get cranky.”
Cat laughed. “And none of us want that.” She crossed to the door. “Come downstairs when you wake up.” She grasped the door handle, then paused and looked over her shoulder. “Oh, stay off the balcony. The wrought iron railing is dangerously loose. I don’t want you falling into the water below.”
Margot jerked her gaze onto the French doors that opened onto a balcony. A shiver snaked up her spine, and ex-Deputy Sheriff Margot Saulnier jumped at the soft click of the door shutting.


An award winning author, Tarah Scott writes historical romance and romantic and paranormal suspense. She is published with Total E-Bound, Loose ID, The Wild Rose Press, and Etopia Press.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Alpha Males

I'm at Ramblings From This Chick talking about Alpha males on Blood Avenged's tour today.  Stop over and let me know what kind of hero you like and if it's Alpha, who your fav is. For me, my hero has to be Alpha. There's just no other kind in my fantasy. ;)

Thanks to everyone who's been coming out and commenting at the tour stops.  It's been so much fun meeting new people and answering their questions about the Sons of Navarus series.  A good friend suggested that I have all eight of the Sons over at their Facebook page for interviews.  I thought that was a really cool idea, so I'm setting that up now.  They're pretty busy with fighting the Archons, but I think I can get them to stop over for some questions. 

Look for that and some cool giveaways right around the time Blood Betrayed comes out on May 24.  As for the release, final preparations are under way.  Today, I finish formatting for the print book.  I hope it goes as smoothly as I'd like.  I find this formatting usually doesn't.  Think good thoughts! LOL

But in the meantime, it's a great May day and life is good. Have a great day!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Author Elaine Raco Chase Guest Post

As I'm out on Blood Avenged's tour, today at Kacey's Konnections answering some great questions in an interview we did, I'm welcoming Elaine Raco Chase to the blog to talk about her book, Double Occupancy. Take it away, Elaine!

What's more fun than a heroine who can bring an alpha-male, tough-guy to his knees – and not even realize she's doing it – nothing!  That's the type of romantic comedies I write – and Double Occupancy is a perfect example. 
Casey Reynolds was a fun character to create: she's sharp, witty, and totally burned out from her job – she just won a Pulitzer Prize for local reporting…but of course it wasn't 'big' enough to be important, oh…and there was very little money either.  But at the Boston newspaper she's worked at since she was sixteen – even if she'd won the Nobel with its million dollar prize, she would still be viewed as the go-fer. 
She also has low self-esteem.  She's six feet tall, average looks, an okay body but it doesn't match up with what's fashionable.  Her mother died when she was a baby, her father was a famous sportscaster who wanted a son – and was ashamed of his 'giant-size' daughter.  He died just before she won the Pulitzer.  But as she is fond of saying – 'local isn't the big leagues.'  At work, her anger at herself and her lack of a personal life equals arguments with smart phones, computer mice sail across the room and into walls, and then she kills the Keurig!
When her boss breaks his leg and can't get to his Mexican villa for a vacation, he forces Casey to go instead.  And she takes him up on it.  She also decides this would be a good place to start a new phase in her boring personal life.  Maybe try for a little romance.  A little excitement.
Enter Travis Craig.  He's been offered the Mexican villa for a vacation too!  And is delighted to find he's going to share a double occupancy with the nubile Miss Reynolds.
Casey's not too sure about this – and tells him he's going to have to pull his own weight because she's there to write a novel not be his maid.  She agreed with this plan to share the house – but on her terms. Soon rest and relaxation were a thing of the past when their double occupancy proved too erotic to control.
For Travis, lust-at-first-sight quickly becomes – more.  As he gets to know Casey, he finds a soul mate and wants to take their relationship up a notch.  Way up a notch!  And who wouldn't fall for a man who does the cleaning, the laundry and who cooks – in more ways than one!
Excerpt from Double Occupancy:

Casey's guttural sounds of discontent had accompanied Travis while he mopped the kitchen floor.  Her angry paper-crunching and impatient toe tapping had punctuated his lunch.  Her huffing and slamming of the typewriter carriage had serenaded him through yet another solitary dinner of scrambled eggs.  Now her mumbled, unladylike expletives and snorting were providing Travis with music to fold laundry by.
This had been her routine for the last five days.  It was almost as if she had retreated into a shell and gone into hiding.  No matter how early he woke, she was already up, had had breakfast, and gone for a solitary swim.  She ate lunch over her typewriter and scratched notes on a legal pad during dinner, making little attempt at conversation.  She acted as if she were alone in the villa, totally ignoring his presence and concentrating all her efforts on her writing.
Travis wasn't jealous of her work, but he was concerned about her health.  Physical and mental strains were taking their toll on her.  The sparkle in her eyes had been replaced by a dull vulnerability.  Her complexion had turned wan and fragile from a lack of fresh air and sunshine.  Her shoulders sagged under some invisible Herculean weight and she just picked at her food.
It was the tenth pulling and crumbling of paper that snapped Travis's tightly leashed composure.  He peeled a pair of apricot bikini briefs off his arm, the dark curls of hair snapping under the static electricity, and threw them back into the laundry basket.
"All right!  That's it!  I've had enough."  He stomped up the three steps that separated the living room from the dining room.
"What is your problem?"  She automatically rolled another sheet of paper into the machine.
Travis yanked the plug from the outlet, totally ignoring her shocked cry of protest.  "My problem is I'm getting to be an expert on static cling, waxy, yellow buildup and dishes that shine."  He rocked back on the heels of his bare feet as he towered over her.  "My problem is you."
Casey stared at him in stunned silence.  He looked larger than normal, his gray twill shorts and black T-shirt emphasizing the broad lines of his physique.  She pushed back her chair, stood up and looked him straight in his glittering eyes.  "I am very sorry that you've had to do all the household chores," she responded with stiff formality, "but I warned you about that from the beginning and I think it's very selfish of you to –"
"I'm only selfish about one thing and that's you."  Travis grabbed her arm and dragged her over to the ornate mirror that hung on the wall over the buffet.  "Look at yourself," he ordered, his long fingers clamped around her chin, forcing her to comply.  "You are a mess.  You look worse than when I arrived.  You're on the verge of total exhaustion."
"Complimentary to the end, aren't you."  She pulled herself out of his grasp and turned away.
"I am not trying to denigrate you."  His voice was quiet, his tone softer.  "I am damn worried about you.  I care."  He slipped his arms around her waist and pulled her body against him.  "You are pushing yourself harder than ever and I don't understand why.  And, honey, I hate to tell you this but nothing you've written in the last week is any good."
Casey sighed, closed her eyes and nodded.  "I know it stinks and I feel so guilty for using all that paper and probably a whole forest died."  She sniffed and leaned back, enjoying the feel of his hard length pressed intimately against her.  Her head lolled against his shoulder, the soft skin of her face brushing against the rough stubble on his cheek.  She sighed again, allowing herself to enjoy the intoxicating sense of well-being.
"What you need is to succumb to the lure of the tropics."  Travis's low-pitched husky voice was like a physical caress.  His breath felt warm against her ear.  "Tomorrow, I'm going to take you away from that typewriter and carry you off into the jungle on a little safari."
She giggled.  "You've had too much sun and Edgar Rice Burroughs.  I saw you reading those Tarzan stories."
He laughed and hugged her tight.  "As intriguing as that sounds, I do not have a Tarzan complex."  His hands slid up her arms to the bare expanse of shoulders revealed by the strapless top of her navy romper.  "I have learned about a very interesting place not too far from here complete with plantation ruins, cascading waterfall, and a secluded lagoon."  His fingers began to knead the tight muscles of her neck and shoulders.
"Hmmm…that feels so good."  Casey exhaled a deep sigh of pleasure and moved her head to one side, silently encouraging him to rub the strain from her neck.  "Jungle lagoon, huh?  Well before I left home, the Syfy Channel had a weekend of Amazon jungle monsters.  So…are we talking giant piranhas that will strip our flesh off; or eight foot leeches or snakes and 'gators that can swallow a jet plane or –" 
His hand stopped her tirade.  "Oh, my god, you are worse off than I thought.  Come on, you are going to get a head start on relaxing right now." 

Meet Elaine Raco Chase

I love reading.  And that’s how I became a writer.  It started in high school with a serial for the newspaper, and then I moved on to writing radio/TV programs and advertising copy.  I was sure short stories would be perfect for me, because I could create the most vivid scenes in under 60 seconds! 
But – I found I needed more time to write compelling characters and their stories – be it romances or mystery/thriller and suspense novels.  Whatever genre I write, my stories are funny, sarcastic, and loaded with fast-paced, bantering dialogue.  My books feature confident, strong women – who have a wicked sense of humor and aren’t really looking for a man – until the perfect one appears.
I have published eighteen novels and non-fiction as well  – all of the novels hitting assorted bestsellers lists – and have over 4 million books in print, in the US and 27 other countries and 17 languages.  It’s been fun!
Now, I’ve entered the world of eBooks and am delighted to be acquiring new readers and renewing connections with previous fans.  All my books have been updated, but as one reader wrote – “wow, they are just as fresh today as when they were first written.”  That’s quite a compliment. 
I’ve always believed in love at first sight.  Well…maybe not quite love but instant attraction.  Why?  Because my dad told me he fell in love with my mother while she was chasing her dog down the street!  I told him that was impossible, he hadn’t even talked to her.  He just grinned and said, “sometimes you just know.”  They were married for 57 years…and their lives were full of love and laughter.  My husband claims he was ‘intrigued at first sight…maybe with a bit of lust thrown in.”  Well we’ve been laughing and loving for the last 42 years!
I also teach of creative writing – and do online classes.  I have some very talented students that I know you’ll be reading quite soon.
I hope you enjoyed the excerpt for Double Occupancy - because love and laughter make perfect bedfellows!

Where to find Elaine:
twitter:    @ElaineRaco


Nook: Every Thursday from 8-11 PM ED on the Author's Corner!