GUEST BLOG: GABRIELLE BISSET

In Defense of The Villain

Writing paranormal erotic romance means getting to do some very creative things with plot and story line. Vampires can fly, and of course, they can hypnotize and mesmerize, among other delicious things. Shifters can become any number of creatures, which is always fun. And in my new book, Stolen Destiny, I created a race of people called Aeveren who live many lives through reincarnation, have destined ones they are drawn to across distance and time, and possess powers above what humans have. But even more fun is creating villains in the paranormal genre.

Villains are always so enjoyable for me. Mine are usually mad, bad, and dangerous to know, in addition to being incredibly sexy. I like that in a bad man. They’re also intelligent, which is the hallmark of a good villain. There’s nothing worse than reading a story and the bad guy is a bumbling fool. It takes all the fun out of hating him, which is what villains are all about, at least on the surface.

But beyond hating them, a well-written villain can make the reader cheer for him, even as he does the most awful things. You see, the bad guy doesn’t have to be all bad. No, I’m not talking about giving him a heart of gold, although that might work. Instead, I mean the bad guy can be the character who challenges the hero to be all that much better. Because the best characters are neither all good nor all bad, a terrific villain can give a romance a wonderful twist, especially if he begins to compete for the heroine’s affections.

For me, the villain is often where the most fun is. Whereas the hero has to be honorable, at least to some extent, the bad guy can say and do things that are beyond the scope of what’s acceptable, and that’s where some of the best conflict can come in.

One of my favorite villains in my books is Amon Kalins. One of the most powerful of his race, he’s able to travel through time, manipulate it, teleport, and when he’s in control of his emotions, he can even affect what others think. Oh, and he’s six-and-a-half feet tall with blond hair and gorgeous blue eyes. Powerful and stunning. What a combination! Here’s a little taste of him, along with the hero and heroine of Stolen Destiny, Varek and Callia.

Callia began to speak, but Varek stopped her with a shake of his head. He quickly scanned the room but saw no one else. But he sensed they weren’t alone.
Leaning in to him, she whispered, “Where is he?”

Before he could answer, they heard the doorknob turn, and they turned to find themselves face to face with the Aeveren tempuster. Amon Kalins stood facing them in the doorway. Taller than Varek by mere inches but leaner, he seemed bigger than life. His long, pale blond hair, his most noticeable feature, hung to the middle of his chest. Running a very close second were his eyes, which were a color close to ocean blue. They sparkled with very fine yellow flecks, and the entire effect was almost magical. Dressed in all black and wearing a long black coat, Amon Kalins looked like a sorcerer.

Fucking wizards, Varek thought to himself.

The three of them stood silently, Varek and Callia taking in the sight of one of the most powerful members of their people and Amon sizing up the visitors to his home.

“Callia, Gethen tells me you are related to Elan. How is she?” His voice was husky and low. As he spoke, he slid out of his coat.

“She’s fine.” Callia felt like she should say something else but was uncomfortable. His deep blue eyes stared into hers like he was searching for something in her through them.

“And this is…” Amon’s voiced trailed off as he turned his head to look at Varek. A sinister smile drew the corners of his well-formed mouth up slightly, and he said in a mocking voice far different than the one he’d used with Callia, “…your brother?”

Varek hoped one of Amon’s powers was telepathy and intentionally spelled out in his mind exactly what he thought the tempuster should do to himself. Callia saw his body tense and diplomatically answered the question while she attempted to avoid eye contact with Amon.

“No, Varek is my destined one,” she said in a voice full of pride as she smiled at Varek.

Amon walked between them and, in a deep, hollow voice, said, “Ah, young love.” He sat in a dark leather chair and extended his arms out to indicate they could seat themselves in the two chairs facing him. Behind him hung full-size portraits of fierce-looking warriors.

Varek kept his eyes on Amon, jealously watching him stare at Callia like she was something he wanted to taste. He sat in the chair closer to the tempuster and silently hoped this meeting and their entire acquaintance with Amon Kalins would be brief.

Callia struggled to avoid Amon’s gaze and looked instead over his head at the warriors’ portraits. She felt his eyes on her and knew without even looking at Varek that he was watching the other man.

Amon thought to himself how easy it would be to dispose of the beautiful female’s destined one and considered doing so but decided not to until he’d heard the reason for their visit. Then he’d seriously consider how to rid her of Varek, whom he knew already didn’t like him.

“You didn’t come to see me to admire my ancestors’ portraits, carina, so what can I do for you?” He knew without even moving his eyes from Callia that Varek disliked the pet name he’d chosen for her. Carina. Little one. He did enjoy when visitors came.

Callia recognized Varek should explain their situation but believed Amon’s preference for her required her to answer. As she prepared to speak, she offered Varek her hand and held his tightly, hoping to remind him of how much she loved him.
“We need your help. We have to find who is murdering Aeveren in New Hope. We need you to use your…abilities to help us capture him.”

As Callia spoke, she felt like Amon’s eyes were enveloping her. They were almost hypnotizing, and she began to fear that they were connected to some unknown power he possessed.

He answered in a voice like a deep purr, “We?”

This time Varek spoke, his voice the one he’d used in Nil. “Yes. We.”

Amon pulled his gaze from Callia and turned toward Varek. Callia watched as his deep blue eyes became almost blue-black.

“And I would do this, why?” The purr in his voice changed to a growl.

Gabrielle Bisset is a college history professor by day, but by nights and weekends (and summers!), she’s an author of erotic romances. Stolen Destiny, her first novel, is out now from Siren Publishing. To buy the book, visit http://www.bookstrand.com/stolen-destiny

In addition, check out her novella, Vampire Dreams, out now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, All Romance eBooks, and Smashwords for another wonderful villain.

To find out more about her writing, visit her blog at http://gbisset.blogspot.com/ and her website at http://www.gabriellebisset.com/ And friend her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002481284652&sk=info and Twitter at http://twitter.com/#!/gabriellebisset

Inspiration For Love With A Little Kink

For many, the idea of BDSM is a new idea, something that seems to be popular just recently. In truth, it’s been around for almost as long as people have been having sex. I have to admit that until I began reading books with a BDSM slant, I paid little attention to it. About two years ago, I began to enjoy erotic romances and erotica with BDSM in the stories, but as a author, I had no plans to write the theme into any of my stories.  Then one day, out of the blue, it was there, and a story was begun.

Actually, my novella Love’s Master, originated from something called The Agony Column.  This column appeared in the Times of London throughout the 19th century and even into the mid-20th century.  In the 1800s, it was actually on the first page of the newspaper because very few people had any interest in reading actual news.  The Agony Column was far more interesting, with its secret notes between lovers and coded messages from business partners to secret investors.  Even family members looking for long lost brothers and sisters used the column to communicate.

The column was full of sadness, despair, and passion, and a brief read of it shows much of what life was like in a time when the written word was vital to contacting others.  I found The Agony Column, and it didn’t take long before a notice jumped right out at me.  Referring to something I highly doubt had anything to do with BDSM, the advertisement said S.B is a strict disciplinarian and not afraid of an unruly pupil (or something very close to that).  As soon as I saw it, I thought, “That’s a great idea for a story–an erotic romance with BDSM!”

It didn’t take long for a story to form and in the end, Love’s Master became my second novella set in Victorian England after Vampire Dreams, which began what has grown into a trilogy. Here’s the blurb for Love’s Master to give you a little taste:

23 year old Lily finds herself widowed and forced to live with her brother and his family, including his eight year old son William, who is nothing short of a terror.  Sure she cannot go another day with his behavior, she begins to search for a new nanny and tutor for her nephew with little success.  But when she happens across an advertisement in the Times that seems to be the answer to her problem, she is set on a path that will take her where she’s never been before.  Victorian England is a place of strict social codes, and the sensual world she enters is strictly forbidden for a woman of her social stature.

Her guide in this world is a man named Kadar, and the feelings he stirs in Lily threaten to change her forever.  However, Victorian society is never far away, and her brother intends on seeing his sister remarried and settled into a home near him in Regent’s Park.  Lily will have to choose between Kadar,who makes her feel more alive than she ever believed she could and Captain Mason Danvers, the gentleman who can offer her security and comfort for the rest of her life. 

For an adult excerpt from Love’s Master, visit my blog at http://gbisset.blogspot.com/p/loves-master.html

And leave a comment telling me if you like BDSM in stories or if you haven’t tried any yet, do you think you would.  I’d love to hear your ideas!

The Lure of The Dangerous Male

As a writer, I strive to make sure my characters are varied.  I don’t want to write the same people over and over again.  But it’s difficult to ignore the fact that many readers of erotic romance love the dangerous male.  I hear readers say they like the nice guy, but they seem to always come around for my bad guys. 

My novella Vampire Dreams is a fine example.  The hero of the story, a vampire named Brandon, gets mentioned so infrequently, you’d think he was the doorman I wrote in to help another character with his bags.  Brandon even has a dash of danger to him and visits the heroine each night, seducing her as she sleeps, but he’s nowhere as bad as the villain of the story, Vasilije.  But who do readers always mention?  Vasilije. 

Bad boys are popular because they flaunt all the rules and ooze confidence.  They come into a room and everyone looks, immediately noticing the scene has changed and someone special has arrived.  They’re usually so self-involved that they don’t notice everyone else, but no matter.  If they’re mad, bad, and dangerous to know, they’re appealing. 

I enjoy writing bad guys. So much of what a villain is can be expressed so well in words, while often the hero seems just so…nice.  There’s nothing wrong with nice, mind you, but as far as I can tell, I’m not the only romance reader who loves the ones who aren’t so nice. 

For me, the parts of Vampire Dreams that involve Vasilije were so easy to write because he’s so utterly hedonistic. There’s little he won’t do to satisfy his desires, and if those actions hurt others, he cares little.  From what readers have told me, they adore Vasilije’s badness, and I’ve been asked so often if he’ll be getting his own story that I’ve begun a new WIP that will be Vasilije’s story.  I guess the bad guy wins again.

Here’s the blurb for Vampire Dreams to let you in on the story:

Homeless and without any family, Arden Stephens must live on the streets of mid 19th century London, never a safe place for a young woman.  One night, as she is running for her life from an attacker, she is rescued by Brandon Ridley and offered a place in his home as his maid.  Brandon is enchanted by Arden from the moment they meet, but just as she has secrets, so too does he.  A vampire hundreds of years old, he yearns for the companionship she can give him.  But for that he must make her one of his kind.

Nightly, he visits her in her sleep, preparing her for the night he will finally make her his own.  For Arden, the wanton dreams she has about her handsome employer seduce her and each day when she wakes up, she finds herself more drawn to him.  But love and desire aren’t enough for Brandon to sire her.  He must first obtain the approval of his maker, an ancient vampire named Vasilije who has thwarted his chance for happiness before.

But if Brandon can convince him, he may finally find the love he’s been without for centuries.

So what about you?  Do you like the good guy or the bad guy?  Let me know what you think!