Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Spotlight: Gabrielle Evans

A small-town girl from southern Oklahoma—we are talking one red light that may or may not work depending on the day of the week—Siren-exclusive author Gabrielle Evans believes in taking chances and pushing boundaries.

Gabrielle’s best-selling series are driven by her belief that everyone has a happy ending waiting to happen, even if it’s found in a seemingly unconventional way. When she’s not busy writing her next story, she’s living her own happily ever after, married to her high school sweetheart. For now, she parks her car in central Indiana, but who knows what tomorrow will bring.


The Green-Eyed Monster
 “He That Is Not Jealous Is Not In Love.”
~St. Augustine

Where are you going?”
“Out with Archer.” Their previous nights out had been so much fun, when Archer suggested going out again, Rayne hadn’t hesitated to jump at the offer. Too much beer, greasy bar food, raucous laughter, and the genuine sense of camaraderie left him wanting more.
 “Oh.” Dante’s face fell, and he nodded his head once. “Well, have fun. Call me if you guys need a ride.”
Turning to face his crestfallen lover, Rayne smiled warmly as he sidled up next to him. He placed his hands on Dante’s chest, smoothing out the wrinkles in his shirt. “I should have said something to you. I’m sorry. I’ve never really had friends before. It’s new and exciting, and I guess I just got carried away. I can stay if you want.”
Dante grinned and shook his head. “I just got a little jealous. You’ve been spending a lot of time with Archer lately.” His fingers gripped Rayne’s hips and tugged him closer. “I guess I just want to keep you all to myself.”
 “We’ve been out three times.” Rayne scrunched his eyebrows and tilted his head to the side. Had he been spending too much time with his new friends?
“I know, baby.” Dante kissed his forehead and sighed. “You’ve also been going to lunch with him, spending time with him on the site, and he’s been over here twice this week.” His voice dropped to a whisper, and his eyes looked sad. “I don’t have a lot of time left with you.
ENVY: pain or resentful awareness of an advantaged enjoyed by another joined with a desire to possess the same advantage

JEALOUSLY: intolerant of rivalry or unfaithfulness; disposed to suspect rivalry or unfaithfulness;
hostile towards a rival or one believed to enjoy an advantage;
vigilant in guarding a possession

It’s common to hear envy and jealousy used synonymously. Both elicit feelings of discontent, resentment, and bitterness. While subtle, the difference between Envy and Jealousy is an important distinction, especially in romance.
With romantic jealousy, we do not covet what another has but fear what they may take. Many will say jealousy evolves from a lack of trust, but I respectfully disagree. To me, jealousy comes from a place of insecurity. It’s not that we believe our partner doesn’t love us. It’s that we think we are not worthy of that devotion.
We compare ourselves with the new admirer, find ourselves lacking, and from there, the anxiety of losing what we perceive to be ours intensifies, spawning feelings of possessiveness and leading to a need to assert our claim.

Instead of taking time to examine the jealousy that rose up in him, Levi wrapped his arm around Archer’s waist and pulled the man to his side. The minute the action caught up with his brain, he regretted it. Not only did he not have a claim on Archer, but Beggs was not the type of town people went around flaunting their homosexuality in.

When Archer gasped and pressed closer to his side, Levi tightened his grip and decided to deal with the fallout later. “I think you and your friends should find somewhere else to get a drink.”
Hudson didn’t even spare him a glance. “Five minutes,” he repeated to Archer. “I’ll have you screaming my name in two. It’ll be just like old times.”
Levi growled, pulling Archer’s smaller body behind him as he leaned over the bar to get right in Hudson’s face. “Leave.” Whatever Archer’s faults, he didn’t deserve to be treated like some low-rent prostitute. The fire that burned in his gut from the knowledge that this asshole was Archer’s ex-lover had nothing to do with his sudden desire to ram his fist into the man’s face.
“It’s a free country.”
“It’s my bar. Now, take your friends and get the fuck out.”
Hudson tried to lean around him to get another look at Archer, but Levi grabbed him by the front of his shirt and hauled him close until their noses almost touched. “Don’t even think about it. If you so much as glance in his direction again, you’ll be pissing blood for a week. Do I make myself clear?” Levi didn’t wait for a reply, but shoved the man from him roughly, causing him to stumble several steps back before he could catch his balance.

There is no way to romanticize envy, though. Envy is manipulative, seeping in and poisoning us slowly. By the time we realize what is happening, it is already too late.
Envy portrays itself as harmless, a basic desire to acquire more or better than we already have. Not only does Envy covet what others have, it quietly yet desperately craves that person’s downfall.

Have you ever heard of Tyler Gordon?”
“The actor? Yeah, everyone’s heard of him.” Bryn frowned in confusion. He’d been following the story up to this point, but he had no idea how a movie star fit into the mix.
“His son, Trenton, is an artist as well. A few years ago, he had his first showing at the age of twenty-one in a big New York gallery. I’d been coveting that gallery for years, and I’d finally gotten my wish.” Silas still looked out into the night, and he swallowed hard, making his Adam’s apple bob. “It had been planned for months. Then three weeks before my showing, I get a phone call saying that everything is canceled. You see, they had Trenton Gordon. What did they need with me?”
“Oh, babe.” Bryn didn’t know anything about art or galleries. He did know what it was like to have your dream just within reach, only to watch it snatched away. “I’m so sorry.”
Silas shrugged. “After that, I kind of faded away. Everyone wanted a Gordon original. Trenton became an overnight phenomenon, and everyone forgot I existed.”
“I’ve seen his work. It’s not as good as yours.” Bryn meant every word, and he’d said it in an attempt to comfort his companion, but Silas growled and snapped his head around to glare at Bryn.
“No, he’s not. That’s what killed me! His work was lazy, sloppy, and mediocre at best. It had no depth, no emotion. Still, everyone flocked to him. They bowed down at his feet and kissed his multimillion-dollar ass. I could have accepted it if I thought he deserved it, but he didn’t!

Envy is greedy, but it is not Greed. Envy is jealous, but it is not Jealousy. Envy is prideful, yet it is not Pride. In writing the Gods of Chaos, I have dealt with each of these flaws. Pride and Greed are internal struggles, but they present themselves outwardly to the world with arrogance.
Envy, however, is quiet. It does not boast or openly demand attention. When I began writing the fifth book in the Gods of Chaos series, I found myself intrigued by the emotion of Envy.
Benson Stone is scarred, as many of my characters are, but he’s not the typical hero. To the world, he presents an easy smile and a congratulatory word. On the inside, however, he is cold, bitter, and consumed with envy. His desire for the best of everything has led to feelings of resentment and ill-feelings toward people he once called friends.
I struggled with the character, unsure if readers would accept him and his personality defects. Was he too unlikeable? Could he be forgiven and redeemed? I truly believe everyone deserves a second chance, and I’m happy to say Benson finally found his way. How did he overcome his wicked ways?
…by finding someone he loved more than himself…

He did deserve it, and I’m glad you stood up for yourself. It’s more than that, though.” Turning just his head to the side, he looked right into Benson’s eyes with an unreadable expression. “You put someone else’s needs before your own, and that’s why I’m proud of you. I don’t know who that little bar fly is, but—”
“Ian,” Benson interrupted. “His name is Ian.”
A tender smile curved Cody’s lips, and he reached out to skim his fingertips along the slope of Benson’s cheek. “I don’t know Ian, but no one deserves to be treated as property. You’re a hero today, darlin’.”
Leaning into the touch, Benson closed his eyes and hummed as he nuzzled against Cody’s palm. He hadn’t realized how starved he’d been for the man’s touch until that moment. “I’m no one’s hero.”
“I think Ian, wherever he is, would disagree. C’mere, pup.”
Insinuating himself between his lover and the bar, Benson leaned his shoulders against the oak and stared up expectantly. “Yes?”
Cody’s laugher was quiet and breathy as he kneaded the flesh around Benson’s hips and dipped his head. “Stop being a brat.”
His breath caught in his throat, and moisture dampened his palms. “Okay.” The hand that slipped beneath the hem of his shirt to span his lower back didn’t disgust him. When Cody’s trapped erection pressed into his stomach, instead of feeling sick, Benson almost came right in his baggy jeans. “Cody?”
Bypassing Benson’s lips, Cody skimmed his nose up the column of his throat and nipped at his earlobe. “Yes?”
“Take me home.
~ Gods of Chaos 5: Speakin’ of the Devil
Coming July 2013

CONTEST: Comment below for a chance to win an ebook from Gabrielle's backlist and a Haven T-shirt! Ends May 31st at Midnight.


  1. Good Morning Gabrielle :) This is very interesting, I never looked at it this way.
    Thank you

  2. Thanks Cathy. :) Glad you enjoyed it.

  3. Hi, Gabrielle
    I have read this series, LOVED IT, yet this post lets me see it in yet another light. While Devil's Playground was my favourite so far, I think I need to get my kindle out and have a re-read it.
    It's always amazing to hear an authors thoughts behind their work, and this one was fascinating. Thank you for sharing with us!!

  4. Morning Gabrielle :) This series is amazing..have read it several times and like Beetleguise says with a slight modification "It just keeps getting better every time I read it!" Thanks for explaining a little of the process about writing these :)

  5. It is said that jealousy and envy have now become synonymous within the English language. Looking at your definitions you can see the difference that you are interpreting through your writing and how you get the readers hooked throughout your Gods of Chaos books.

  6. Thank you, ladies! I'm always glad to hear when someone loves these guys as much as I do. The Gods of Chaos is probably one of my favorite series to write, but it also gets a little more difficult with every book as the "sins" progressively get just a bit darker.

  7. Such a good post Brie. And a very good character flaw to base a story around. Benson sounds like the perfect character to be redeemed and by the sound of it, you will do it beautifully.
    Your words about envy actually remind me of something one of my seminary professors, Steve Hill, used to say: "Beware of envy for it rots the soul, destroys the heart, contaminates the mind and fills the body with the stench and the rottenness of selfishness, laziness, pride, and bitterness and always leads to the destruction of integrity." I used to have that up on my wall. I am glad that Benson has a run-in with one of the Gods of Chaos so that he can be redeemed from envy and get his HEA from what sounds to be a very delicious man. Yummy!
    Soooo can't wait to read this one when it comes out!

  8. Thank you, Vic! Your professor sounds like a wise man!

  9. I love how your mind works. I never know what kind of story you will come up with and that is amazing and a gift. I know you might get this question a lot but what inspires you? How do you come up with a story idea?

  10. Looks like I'm re-reading this series with a fresh take. Thanks for sharing. I'm excited to read the new Gods Of Chaos book.

  11. Wow, what a great post. And exactly how I feel about romantic jealousy.

  12. loved reading about these guys. I think I will pull these out a read them again.

  13. This series sounds great! Thanks so much for the great post and excerpts :)

  14. I think I have found a new series to read. I have shied away from the Gods of Chaos series for some time. Not exactly sure of the reason, but now I am very intrigued. Thanks for the behind the scenes look and opening my eyes :)

  15. Thank you, everyone! Rosie, I am partial to this series, but I will admit you're not alone in the hesitancy to try it. I think a lot of people believe it's preachy because it deals with the deadly sins, but I assure you, it's not. Most of them are light and fun. If you decide to give them a go, I hope you enjoy them. :)

  16. There's a reason why envy is one of the 7 deadly sins but not jealousy...thanks for sharing :)

  17. I love this series and this post makes me want to go back and read them all again. I love the way you explained the emotions behind it all. I can't wait for the fifth book to come out. Thank you for such an amazing series.