Tag: Bleeding Heart (page 1 of 2)

Revisiting #PNR Bleeding Heart

bleeding heart 600So, as promised, Monday posts in February are devoted to my romance work. Today, I’d like to take another look at Bleeding Heart, Book 1 of the Medici Protectorate series.

The idea for the series came to me from my beloved grandfather, John Naccarato. The 30th anniversary of his passing was yesterday, February 7, so I think remembering him and his legacy is a fitting thing to do right now.

When I was young, I used to sit on my grandfather’s lap and ask him to tell me stories. One that really stuck with me was of his father’s birth. My great-grandfather never met his dad. He was the illegitimate son of Italian nobility. I used to dream that someone from that family would come and take us to Italy, would recognize my family as one of their own and welcome us into their country and their lives.

I guess it was my own version of the Princess Diaries. Only my version was steeped in reality but never came to fruition.

Italian Americans

My Great-Grandmother, My Grandfather, and His Siblings

Several years later, that story of my grandfather’s heritage still lingered on my mind. I was considering different story ideas, and my kids—who I’d told the story to—told me I should I begin with that premise. It sounded like a great idea. And because my kids suggested it, I wanted them to be part of the process. They both hold black belts in TaeKwonDo, and at the time were training heavily with weapons. So the concept of unbreakable daggers was born. And because my kids loved fantasy, a magical element was thrown in.

I’m currently writing the third installment of the Medici Protectorate series. The storyworld and plots have been developed for years. (Book 2, Mind Control, is complete and with the publisher. Expected release date is May 20, 2016.) And to me, even though it’s no longer my grandfather’s heritage story, I find it to be the perfect blend between my ancestors and my children. I think my grandfather—and hopefully his father—would love it.

Here’s a brief excerpt:

It was supposed to be a soft kiss, barely a tender caress. Just enough to whet his appetite and tease hers. But when his mouth met hers, a dark desire awakened in him. He fisted his hand in her hair and pulled her to him, claiming her with a deep, passionate kiss.

So, there you have it. A never before released excerpt from Bleeding Heart. If you’d like more information, you can find it on the Bleeding Heart page. If you want to read the first chapter (plus a little more), it is available for free in the sidebar. And if you’d like to read the whole novel, you can find it at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iBooks.

Oh, and a reminder. Type and Cross and Bleeding Heart are currently on sale, but the price will be going up after February 19. If you want them but haven’t purchased them yet, now’s your chance to get them for under a dollar a piece.

Anyway, I’d love to know what you think about Bleeding Heart, the premise, or about alchemy and powers. Let’s talk about it.

Happy to Announce Novels on Sale for Valentine’s Day

Staci Troilo book promoI know. I think I’ve set a record for posting this week. But I have exciting news, and it’s a limited time offer.

From today through February 19, my publisher, Oghma Creative Media, is running a sale on several novels: A Bride for Gil by Dusty Richards, Just Like Gravity by Sorchia Dubois, Beyond the Moon and The Tell-Tale Stone by Velda Brotherton, Noisy Creek by Pamela Foster, Santorini Sunset by Claire Croxton, and Southern Seduction by Luna Zega. (I’ve included hyperlinks to their respective websites and to their Kindle eBooks on Amazon. You can also visit Oghma Creative Media’s website for more information on these authors, these novels, or on any of the other talented authors who write under the Oghma imprints.)

Oh, yeah—they’re running a sale on two of my novels, as well: Type and Cross and Bleeding Heart

Bleeding Heart is a paranormal romance (the supernatural element stemming from alchemy).

Type and Cross is a family drama, but at its heart, it’s a love story.

Both focus on the hero and heroine and whether they can reconcile their differences by the end.

And both are on sale. (Click on the link, and then select which book(s) you’d like to download. Amazon | iBooks | and we’re still waiting for Nook to price match.)

If you’ve already read one, some, or all of these, please help spread the word to your family and friends. And, if you haven’t already reviewed what you read, consider doing so. Reviews really help an author.

If you haven’t read these books, consider downloading one, some, or all of them before the price goes up. (And then, when you’re finished reading, please leave a review.) Thanks.

The Oghma Creative Media sale has something for everybody. There’s a western, a paranormal romance, a PTSD drama, a Poe-inspired mystery, a funny mainstream, a snarky romance, and for you adventurous readers, an erotic love story.

And, of course, there’s my supernatural romance and my family drama/love story.

Seriously, if you need a gift for Valentine’s Day, any of these would make a great one. And if you think of Valentine’s Day as a Hallmark holiday, well, reading these will give you something to do on the 14th!

Thanks for checking these out. Wishing you a wonderful weekend and an early Happy Valentine’s Day!

I’m Going Trick-or-Treating! Come Along…

Okay. It’s not really trick-or-treat here. No tricks, other than the title, anyway.

pittsburgh-843273_1280Today is a real treat… for me. Talented author Mae Clair has invited me to guest post on her site. We’re talking all about the supernatural elements in Bleeding Heart and the Medici Protectorate Series.

I really hope you’ll join us. (Click here to visit me at Mae Clair’s site.) And Happy Halloween!night-995189_1920

Alchemy, the Forbidden Magic of the Renaissance

alchemyWe are a society of science and technology. It’s been centuries since we’ve believed in magic and mysticism. At least, that’s the trend. Some people believe to this day.

What if they’re correct?

That’s one of the theories posited in my latest release, paranormal romance Bleeding Heart, Book One of the Medici Protectorate Series.

If you read paranormal fiction, you go into it knowing societal norms will be challenged. There may be ghosts, witches, werebeasts, the undead… any manner of supernatural aspects. In my novel, a main character uses alchemy to imbue handcrafted marble daggers with magical powers—powers which affect the warriors who use them in fascinating ways.

alchemy symbolsAs early as the 1300s and well into the Renaissance, alchemy was forbidden by the Church for several reasons. The uneducated considered it an occult practice, which was a danger to organized religion. The devout felt alchemists dabbled in God’s realm, which was sacrilegious. Also, many alchemists were scam artists who used deception to “prove” their abilities. By 1404 in England, those who worked in alchemy could be punished by death. Due to these facts, many alchemists hid their interest in the pursuit.

That didn’t stop people from practicing alchemy, though.

Famous practitioners include Roger Bacon, Nicholas Flamel, John Dee, Isaac Newton, Paracelsus, and even Pope John XXII.

In my novel, I’ve taken liberties with history and made Michelangelo an alchemist. He uses his skills to help the Medici secure their destinies… and in the process, he sets in motion a series of events in modern day Pennsylvania which places one Italian-American family in mortal danger.

In Bleeding Heart, the dagger wielded by the warrior is crafted from red marble. The properties of red stones strengthen the body, add vitality to life, and represents passion and lust. This warrior contends with the positive and negative aspects of these traits, and his primary element is fire.

If you like romances and love the potential alchemy brings to a story, I think you’ll enjoy Bleeding Heart, available now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks.

Amazing When Sweaty Teaser  Bleeding Heart Front Cover 300  Targets Teaser 2

An Author’s Embarrassment of Riches

Bleeding Heart BannerThe author community has to be one of the best, if not the best, community to be a part of. I’m truly blessed and even more grateful that so many of my writer friends have been supporting me and the new release of my novel, Bleeding Heart.

Once again, today, I’d like to invite you to visit a fellow author’s blog and show her the same support she’s given me. I’m at Kate Hill’s site today, discussing my new novel. Please click on the link and stop by for a visit.

Want To Visit My Sister With Me?

Bleeding Heart Front Cover 300Hi, everyone. It’s the day before my novel, Bleeding Heart, goes live. To prepare for the occasion, my sister was kind enough to interview me on her blog. Sadly, it wasn’t a face-to-face interview, but it was still a fun visit. Why don’t you check it out and see what we had to say?

Visit Michele Jones by clicking this link.In the garage 2

Hope to see you there!

And remember, tomorrow, 8/11/15…

Bleeding Heart will be available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks.

Sex, Secrets, and Destiny… A Novel Approach to Romance

Bleeding Heart Front Cover 300If you’re a frequent reader of mine, you know I have a novel coming out. Bleeding Heart, Book One of the Medici Protectorate Series, releases August 11.

I’m so excited!

It’s available now for preorder on Amazon and iTunes.

If you still aren’t sure what it’s about, let me give you a brief description:

Warrior Gianni protects Franki, secret legacy of the Medici, from prophesied assassins. (You can tweet this, if you’d like, by clicking here.)

For a better description, here’s what you need to know:

After her father’s murder, Franki is targeted for assassination by an unknown enemy. She finds her safety depends on the Medici Protectorate, the warriors who guarded her bloodline and their secret for centuries.

Gianni, Franki’s protector, struggles to garner her trust. As he assumes his new role, he also undergoes inexplicable, explosive changes… transformations he can’t control.

Their worlds collide in passion and violence, and Franki struggles to trust Gianni. When her life is on the line, Gianni will have to conquer both her fears and his own personal demons to rescue her in time.

If that interests you, here are a few teasers from inside the book. I hope you enjoy the writing and love the design work as much as I do. (I think my designer, Casey W. Cowan, did a phenomenal job on them.)


Kiss Properly Indecently Teaser Amazing When Sweaty Teaser

Targets Teaser 2

In the garage 2


I hope you enjoy these. Let me know what you think.

Do You Take Time to Rest and Recharge?

Things aren't this bad. Yet.

Chores. Ugh. At least things aren’t this bad. Yet.

I spend a lot of time working. A LOT. Much more than my family would like. I work more than 40 hours a week, and then I still find time to turn around and work on my fiction. And then there’s social media… I love talking with all of you. My family doesn’t always appreciate that, though. And my household chore list is woefully long because of my hours. But I digress…

After all that computer time, the eyes get tired, the body gets sore, and the mind gets muddled. At least, that’s what happens to me. And after several months of that? I’m pretty useless to anyone.

At work or at home.

Surf and sun... all to ourselves. Gorgeous!

Surf and sun… all to ourselves. Gorgeous!

That’s why I jumped at the chance to vacation at a private beach. Two weeks, surf and sand and silence. Lovely!

I didn’t expect to have no Internet or cell service, though. I admit, that gave me anxiety for a while. But then I embraced the concept. It was like my childhood again. I wasn’t attached to any tech. It was liberating.

Yeah, my kids didn’t necessarily agree, but I needed the downtime. The sunny days, the lull of the waves… how could anyone not love that? (tweet the thought if you agree)

Then Tropical Storm Bill hit. We lost power. We lost beach days. But we still had fun. Card games, jigsaw puzzles, old stories… It was wonderful. And yes, I think even the kids enjoyed it.

And then I came home, where I found over 4,000 emails had backed up, my company had reorganized, and my work had piled up. And the anxiety came right back.

But I was able to better deal with it. Because I had rested, recharged, refocused.

I’d go back to my private paradise in a heartbeat. But I’m glad to be home. Back in the familiar. Back with my characters. Back with you.

medici protectorateMy novel Bleeding Heart will be coming out soon. And now I’m around to actually talk about it, so that’s exciting. Visit often; I’d love to talk about it with you.

What about you? What do you do to recharge? Do you have a favorite activity? Or a favorite place to visit? Tell me about it.

In the meantime, if you can’t get to the beach, maybe you’ll enjoy a few pictures from my trip.

Casey loved to jump the waves.

Casey loved to jump the waves.

Sammi reenacting a photo from her infant-days.

Seth and his dad posing for a picture like Corey had taken with his dad years ago.

Max had a blast... until he swam out too far and got frightened. But he rebounded soon and got back in.

Max had a blast… until he swam out too far and got frightened. But he rebounded soon and got back in.

After the storm passed, this was my view.

After the storm passed, this was our view.

Overcoming Obstacles

Where has Staci been?

Superman_3D-Logo-WallpaperI know that’s what you’ve been asking. It’s been a while. Despite my children believing I can be all things to all people, move mountains, and be in three places at once—all while holding down a job and maintaining a structured writing schedule—I am not Superwoman. My kryptonite is technology. My computer keeps getting infected with malware—and yes, I do have anti-virus software installed—my modem and router recently broke, and I’m firmly convinced that I have some kind of magnetic field that makes all technology fritz when I touch it. Hey, that’s a real thing. (I think.) Sigh. Obstacles.

Anyway, that’s why I haven’t been around. That, and a few family issues that needed tending.

But I’m back now. Ish. The tech still isn’t perfect, but I’m trying to work around it.

That said, I have a few announcements.

  1. Posts may be infrequent for a while. Please bear with me.
  2. Bleeding Heart was supposed to come out in May, but with my computer down, edits didn’t happen on schedule. The release date has been pushed to June. I’ll keep you apprised.
  3. Ernest_Hemingway_1950_crop (1)Today is supposed to be #FFFF (First Friday Fiction Feature). As you might have guessed by now, I’m way behind schedule. (I don’t even want to tell you how many unread emails I have right now.) That said, instead of a free short story, I’m going to post a piece smaller than flash fiction. Smaller than micro fiction. Maybe I’ll coin a phrase for it and call it nano fiction. Oh, wait. That sounds like NaNoWriMo-type writing. Eh, I’ll work on a name. In the meantime, I’ll draw my inspiration from Hemingway’s challenge and write a story similar to his shortest work, although, let’s be real. I’m no Hemingway, and I write l-o-n-g. (FYI, it might interest you to note that there is no substantiated evidence that Hemingway actually wrote this, nor is there proof that he wrote short-short fiction at all.) Anyway, here is the famous “Hemingway” story:

For sale: baby shoes, never worn.

So today, my #FFFF will be uber-short. (Maybe that’s a good name?) Anyway, without further ado, my uber-short First Friday Fiction Feature:

The headline read, “Aliens Invade.” No one lived to read the article.

Yep, mine was twice as long. But it’s still probably the shortest thing I ever wrote.

Hope you enjoyed this “story.” Why don’t you try your hand at it? See if you can beat my word count. Or Hemingway’s. Leave your uber-short in the comments below.

What Defines Success?

The Red Vineyard---Vincent van Gogh [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Red Vineyard—Vincent van Gogh [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Legend suggests Vincent van Gogh only sold one painting in his lifetime—The Red Vineyard. Investigation into the matter shows that it’s likely he sold two paintings, as well as some sketches.

Regardless of which story you believe, one thing is certain. Van Gogh killed himself at age 37, believing himself a failure.

Today he’s known as one of the most prolific artists of all time.

By van Gogh’s standards, I know plenty of artists who achieved more “success” than him in their lifetimes who will never be famous. I know bands that play at local establishments and sell CDs of their work. Artists who have sold work and been commissioned to do more. Authors who have sold more than one copy of their books, who have multi-book deals. Heck, I fall into that category.

I don’t know if any of us will ever be famous. And, while I can’t speak for everyone else, I don’t feel like a failure. I don’t measure my success by number of sales. Sure, I’d love that number to be in the millions, but that’s not why I write.

I write because I have stories to tell, themes to explore, concepts to share. I write because I want not to only entertain people, but to get them thinking about their lives and their roles in the world. I write not for notoriety, but for legacy. This is my skill set, and this is what I can leave to the world. Hopefully I’ll leave it a better place than I found it.

For me, success is completing the tasks I set for myself. I wanted to share my words with the world, and I have. That, to me, is success. (click to tweet)

However, if you want to encourage thousands of people to buy my work, well… that’s just icing on the cake. 🙂

medici protectorateI have a new novel, Bleeding Heart, releasing this month. Tuesday, May 19, to be exact. When it is published, I’ll be sharing a story that’s important to me, because it is inspired by a story of my grandfather’s heritage. Through this story, I have immortalized his legacy. And I can’t think of anything more successful than that.

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