Gabrielle: I live in Pennsylvania with my son. I teach college students American and European history, and I write erotic romance. Sometimes it’s paranormal, while other times it’s historical. But it’s always romance. I began writing years ago, but it wasn’t until this year that I had my first novel published.
Jen: Tell us about Masquerade and where is can be purchased.
Gabrielle: Masquerade is the third novella in the Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy. It’s about a young woman named Annelisa who is being forced to marry a much older man, the Earl of Swindon, so her family can have a title. The earl wants a virgin for a wife, so Annelisa decides the best way to get out of her impending marriage is to lose what the earl wants most. She chooses Count Nikolai Shetkolov, a diplomat in the service of the Russian Tsar, to help her get out of the marriage, and at a masquerade ball seduces him. The problem is that Nikolai is a bit smarter than she anticipated and won’t let the mystery rest until he figures it out. Annelisa ends up getting much more than she bargained for with Nikolai.
Gabrielle: I’ve been writing for years, but my first novel was published this June. My book, Stolen Destiny, was picked up by Siren Publishing, and I can still remember the day I got the email telling me they wanted to publish my book. Siren had been the first publisher I sent the manuscript to and as luck would have it, they wanted it.
Gabrielle: My daughter is also a writer, but as of yet, she isn’t published. She tends to favor fantasy and sci-fi more than romance.
Gabrielle: I am a dedicated plotter, especially with my novellas. I write up a complete and detailed outline before beginning any book. I have the characters mapped out, the setting constructed in my mind, and the plot all worked out before I put the first word down on paper.
Gabrielle: I use Evernote on my phone and computer, which are both linked through it, and whenever an idea hits, if I’m not near paper, I just type it into my phone or computer.
Gabrielle: Masquerade takes place in 1878, but since I’d written two novellas in the trilogy before that had to do with the Victorian Era, I had a good sense of many things associated with the time period. I did research information concerning Tsar Alexander II, who was ruler of Russia during the time the book is set in and who Nikolai serves. I also researched women’s style of dress because I wanted Annelisa to be a woman who didn’t follow the pack. As a result, I have her dress in the more artistic style of dress which some women chose over the bustle style. I also researched smaller issues, such as men’s clothing, because at one point Annelisa must dress as a man. That was fun!
Gabrielle: I prefer to be unique with characters’ names, but I always like to associate them with something interesting or notable about the character. Nikolai is a very Russian-sounding name, so that came easily. Annelisa was simply a name that I thought was beautiful, so I chose to use it. However, for other characters, such as those in my Destined Ones Series, a paranormal romance series, I choose names that have a particular sound to them, such as Varek and Amon. Both sound powerful, and those work since those males are very powerful, each in their own right.
Gabrielle: If Masquerade was made into a movie, I would have Natalie Portman as Annelisa, and for Nikolai, I’m thinking Hugh Jackman would work. A nice goatee and he’d look the part.
Gabrielle: I love Charlotte Featherstone, Marie Treanor, and Robin Schone. In addition, I’m a fan of J.R. Ward too. Love those Black Dagger Brotherhood vamps! I’m heavily into edits for my next novel, Destiny Redeemed, which comes out in October, so my reading is a bit thin right now. However, I’m looking forward the last book in Marie Treanor’s Awakened By Blood series, which is also due out in October.
Gabrielle: I just want to keep writing, and I dream of someday (hopefully soon!) being able to leave my job to devote my time to writing full time.
Gabrielle: Destiny Redeemed will be released in October, and then a novel that came from the first novella in the Victorian Erotic Romance Trilogy, Vampire Dreams, will be released right before Christmas. It’s Vasilije’s story, and I’m in the middle of writing it now. After that, in 2012, I have two more novels in my Destined Ones series to complete (both are at least halfway finished), and I’m mulling over another trilogy of novellas, maybe vampire, but maybe something else paranormal.
Gabrielle: My blog is at http://gbisset.blogspot.com/ and my website can be found at http://www.gabriellebisset.com/ Readers can’t also find me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002481284652&sk=info and Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/gabriellebisset
Gabrielle: I’m always curious what readers wish would be the “next big thing” in romance novels. So what do you think? What do you wish would be the next great trend?
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