Thursday, March 31, 2011

TRS Treasure Hunt...#TRStreasurehunt


This is the event I've been talking about all week in several previous posts. It starts tomorrow but I'm posting early. So here's the answer, below, to the clue I provided for the event. (When you go to the TRS web site, click the "Treasure Hunt" map at the top left, which will take you to the page that describes the contest and where there's a form to enter the contest.) Good luck!!


I'm also offering a free e-book to the first person who comments here. And you don't have to sign in to google if you don't have an account. You can even post anonymously or with a fake name. I know how important discretion is when it comes to erotic romance and I respect everyone's privacy. Just send me an e-mail, let me know you were the first one to comment, and I'll send you an e-book.


Clue: What two very important topics does Jase want to discuss with Luis in the beginning of the book, The Virgin Billionaire: Revenge?


Topic #1 Luis wanted to talk about two things that night, and he knew both topics had the potential to raise Jase’s eyebrows. So he decided to start with the lighter of the two subjects and brace himself for Jase’s reaction. “I’ve been thinking about hiring a live-in nanny for Hunter."


Topic #2 Luis turned and looked into Jase’s eyes. “I’ve been asked to pose in the nude for Romantic Tidbits and Treasures.”





Speaking of Events, Check Out What Book Cover Artist Paul Richmond Is Doing Right Now

Paul Richmond is having an event over at his blog. You can get there and vote by checking out Elisa Rolle's blog first, here. I'm a huge fan of all his work, including all his book covers. And though I've never been fortunate enough to have Paul do any of my book covers, I did win one of Paul's signed prints last year and it's one of the most cherished works of art I own.

And I owned an operated my own art gallery in New Hope, PA for ten years. It was a successful gallery and the only reason I stopped was because I wanted to write full time instead of part time. And if Paul had been around when I owned my gallery, I would have begged to represent him. And I have a feeling I would have sold tons of his work.

So check out Elisa's blog and enter Paul's contest. I'm not going to say which cover I voted for, because it wasn't easy to choose.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Event Is Moving Forward...

The event I posted about earlier this week is, in fact, moving forward.

I'll post more in the next few days, with details about how readers can participate and have a chance to win not only a great prize, but also a free e-book.

Glad this is moving forward. I've started a new book and I'm still getting into the characters myself. The book I submitted to the publisher last week, tentatively titled, Gone With a Wink, was something I really felt close to. And I'm not even sure why. But I'm having empty book-nest syndrome for the first time in twenty years.

If You Write LGBT Fiction, Please Don't Do This

I'm reading a book right now I thought was almost perfect. It's a YA novel, written by a fairly well known author who has been on the NYT bestseller list, published by a large publisher. And it's about a troubled teenage girl who starts a friendship with a sensitive Female To Male transgender, but doesn't know this in the beginning and has to learn how to cope with it. All good stuff!!

The book is well-written. It deals with a difficult subject that isn't often written about. But last night while I was reading and getting close to the end, one line ruined the entire book for me. And this one line was spoken by a throw-away character who means nothing to the storyline and the entire thing could have been avoided if the author had known what he/she was doing. I'm not mentioning names or titles with this post. I may in the future. But not now. Mainly because I see this happen so often.

In one scene, the teenage girl is hiding out in a hospital room because her transgender friend is in serious condition and she wants to make sure nothing bad happens to him in the hospital because he's a transgender. I had a small problem with this part because hospitals are professional places and I find it hard to believe anyone working in a hospital would do anything to harm a patient on purpose. But it could happen. Anything could happen. And this isn't what ruined the book for me.

What ruined the book was when a male nurse disovered the teenage girl hiding behind a chair and the male nurse said something to the effect of, "Hey, girlfriend. What are you doing there?" Of course I've paraphrased this. But he did refer to the teenage girl as girlfriend, as if he were about to double snap his fingers. Evidently, the author was trying to show us the male nurse is gay in a way that is far too obvious, often insulting, and way off base when it comes to what most gay men are like in real life. Especially professionals, like male nurses. And I can promise you without a doubt, you'll never hear me refer to anyone as girlfriend, babydoll, sweetie, or hon.

Now, I know there are gay men who double snap their fingers and refer to everyone as girlfriend, babydoll, and sweetie with a strong lisp and a limp wrist. We all know them. Carson Kressley does it all the time. And there's nothing wrong with this. I have good friends who are effeminate. But what I don't know are any gay male nurses who refer to people as girlfriend and double snap their fingers. I don't know any professional gay men who speak this way, not in the public or private sector. If anything, most of the gay male nurses I know work hard to fight against this stereotype every day of their lives.

In other words, writing about effeminate gay men works if it's relevent to the storyline. The effeminate male nurse in this book would have worked if the author had explained he was one of those atypical effeminate gay nurses. And it could have been done well, too. But if it comes out of nowhere, just for the sake of showing that a character is gay with an effeminate stereotype, I have a problem with this in LGBT fiction. It tells me the author is faking it, it tells me the author doesn't have much personal experience with professional gay men, and it tells me the stereotypes are still there and well known authors and large publishers don't give a damn what the LGBT community thinks.

So whatever you do, if you are a new author writing LGBT fiction, please don't make all your professional gay male characters effeminate unless they are supposed to be that way and it's within the context of the storyline. We (gay men) aren't all this way, especially male nurses, male teachers, and gay men working in corporate America. The fact that the gay dollar is so strong is proof that most gay men are, in fact, dignified professionals who are nothing like what we see on TV sitcoms or read about in novels like the one I'm talking about right now. And authors have a responsibility to get this right, especially when they've had a NYT bestseller and have a large publisher backing them.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Authors Spending Money on Promotion and Marketing

I've always been in business for myself. I owned an art gallery for ten years and another small business I sold in 2006. I learned a lot about running a business from the art gallery because it was in the tourist town of New Hope, PA and surrounded by other small businesses that catered to tourists, too. I also learned what not to do when running a small business.

Unfortunately, in the ten years I owned my gallery I saw dozens of small businesses come and go, and usually within the first year. People thought it would be fun to open their own business without taking into consideration you have to be there seven days a week, hold on to your money as if you're holding on to you life, and carry merchandise that people want to buy not just merchandise they love. Yet people with no business experience would invest their nest eggs (or their mid-life crisis divorce settlements) into a small business that was their dream. Unfortunately, again, this dream wasn't shared by their customers and they wound up going out of business in less than a year's time.

It reached a point where I stopped getting too friendly with new business owners I knew weren't going to make it (you can always tell). Especially when they started asking me to spend money on group efforts to advertise and market, sometimes a lot of money for TV commercials and magazine ads I knew were a complete waste of time. I always refused. I knew it would be a waste of money for everyone concerned. I was in a tourist town, filled with thousands of people from Monday to Monday, and I didn't see the need to advertise anything other than my gallery, the merchandise I sold in my gallery, and how I presented my gallery to the public and treated my clients.

And I feel the same way about my work as a writer. I'm not against all marketing and promotion. I think on a grand scale, if you have thousands of dollars to invest in an ad in People Magazine it certainly can't hurt. But if you don't have that kind of money to invest on a grand scale, the good thing is there are plenty of ways to promote books on the Internet without investing any money at all.

In other words, if someone starts up a m/m romance blog, for reviews or just to promote m/m romances and authors, I will support them completely. I'll contribute my time, I'll write blog posts, and I'll shout about them all over the web. But I won't invest any money unless I'm absolutely certain I'm going to see excellent results. And most of the time I don't think I'll see excellent results. Most of the time I see a nice effort by nice people with good intentions who don't know what they are doing. But that's not what business is all about. And, in many ways, authors are business people whether they like it or not.

I will get involved in author events and donate time and money, where there's a give-a-way to readers, like an e-reader or free books. I donate free pdf files all the time to these things. I believe in these types of promotions strongly. And I think it's a nice gesture to offer free give-a-ways to readers as a show of appreciation. I don't even care about the promotional aspects. I like doing this because it's fun.

But when it comes to joining a group effort where I have to pay monthly or yearly fees (no matter how small they are), I usually pass. I know these things are done with good intentions and I know the people doing them are working hard. But I also believe I can market and promote in other ways that aren't going to cost anything. Authors can pull together and come up with tons of ideas that don't cost a cent. The Rainbow Awards is a wonderful example of this. Authors promote together all the time. And whether the promotional effort works or not, at least they had fun doing it. And, most of all, they didn't have to take any money out of their pockets.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Stay Tuned For An Interesting Event

One very ambitious author I know has been organizing an event for romance readers. I can't post any details right now because it's not official yet. But if all things go as planned (fingers crossed), there's going to be an event that's sort of like a treasure hunt happening in the near future.

And, there will be a winner who receives a very nice prize...a very nice prize. We're waiting to see if everyone who said they wanted to participate is still going to participate. People are busy juggling writing careers and full time jobs these days, and we aren't 100% sure yet. But when I know for certain, I'll post all the details right here very soon.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Don't Fence Me In

With all the talk this past week about authors like Amanda Hocking who have had great success recently with self-publishing, I couldn't get this song out of my head. And after writing this post about another author who is being slightly pressured by her publisher to do public readings, I really couldn't get this song out of my head.


Yes, My Books Are Also Sold in Print

I've been receiving a lot of e-mails and personal messages from people on social networks asking if any of my books are sold in print. Some even tell me they'd love to read my books and they are sorry they can't read them in print.

The answer is yes, they are sold in print. Not all, though. The short stories with Loveyoudivine.com are only e-books. You can't get them in print. But all my books with Ravenousromance.com are also sold as print books. This Amazon link will direct you to print editions. I probably should have mentioned this on the blog a while ago. But I tend to take for granted that most of the people who read my books read them as e-books. And I often forget there are still many people out there reading print books and probably will be reading print books all the time.

I love my kobo e-reader. I take it everywhere I go and I'm usually reading three or four books at the same time. But I also still read print books. And I'll never stop reading print books. So I fully understand the need to embrace print books even more so in these changing times.

Friday, March 25, 2011

New Release Coming Soon...THE VIRGIN BILLIONAIRE: REVENGE

Yet to be released, but I know it's coming out soon. I'll post more next week, with a few unpublished excerpts.

Reading on the Down-Low: Erotic Romance and Discretion Go Hand in Hand

I've been writing erotic romance for almost twenty years, and one of the things I've learned is that this sub-genre and discretion are extremely important. It's one of the reasons why I keep this blog rated pg and never post explicit excerpts, so I can discuss topics like this openly and no one will be offended. It's also why I allow anonymous comments here on the blog. I know most people who read erotic romance don't advertise it to their friends and don't like to use their real names when they are commenting. And most comments from readers, if they dare to comment, are anonymous or fake names. In other words, they are reading on the down-low.

And there's nothing wrong with this. This is why most authors who write erotic romance use pen names. They don't want their bosses to know, their families to know, and sometimes even their friends to know what they are reading. I've had authors tell me this over the years and I don't think I'm being presumptuous. I decided a long time ago I'd use my real name because I felt more comfortable with my real name. But I fully understand it when an author uses a pen name.

The reason I'm writing this post is because an author contacted me last week with a problem. Her publisher wants her to do a live book reading event and she's apprehensive about it. First, she writes e-books, caters to people who read e-books, and doesn't think doing a live event in some out of the way place she'd never normally go to for personal entertainment is going to help sell her books (she writes e-books and it's all about online promotion, in her opinion). Second, it's going to take her a long time to get there and she's going to have to spend a lot of money on gas, parking, and tolls. Third, and probably the most important, she's apprehensive about reading excerpts from her books, even if it is a small audience, because she's not comfortable reading erotica, hers or anyone else's, in public.

I hate to give anyone advice. I really do. But this time I broke the rule and opened my big mouth. And that's because I'm not fond of reading erotic romance in public. It isn't the same as Jonathan Franzen reading excerpts from Freedom. There's something about reading an erotic romance in public that leaves me feeling awkward and out of place. And I'm no prude. I love the genre, don't get me wrong. I wouldn't still be doing it after twenty years if I didn't. But I think erotic romance is a more discreet form of entertainment and it's not something I feel comfortable reading in a public forum. I know other authors will disagree and I know they do public readings without thinking twice. But, frankly, I don't care what they think in this particular case. If you take a good erotic romance, even one that has sold well and had great reviews, out of context, even slightly, it turns into a carny sideshow or a skit for Saturday Night Live...at the author's expense, not the publisher's. There's actually a live journal web site that laughs at erotic romance, with excerpts and examples. I'm aware of this all too well. It's happened to me when I least expected it with one snarky book reviewer, and I learned the true meaning of how an erotic romance can be twisted and turned into a sideshow with the wrong interpretation and a bad editor who misspelled one character's name.

But I do believe that readers appreciate author discretion when it comes to erotic romance. Since the advent of e-readers, people can now buy erotic romances and read them very discreetly and no one will ever know. I think most of my readers do this, at least from what I gather through the fan mail they send me. And I respect their discretion, and hopefully they respect mine.

Then there's the problem of what erotic romance is. Some believe it should have more emotion than erotica, others believe the opposite. I'm not getting into that because I'm still not sure what the true definition of an erotic romance is and I've been writing it almost all my life. But I do know there's always a certain amount of discretion, which actually makes reading or writing erotic romance even more fun. And if an author who writes erotic romance doesn't feel comfortable doing a public reading, I see nothing wrong here. I think the readers will understand...probably more than anyone...and forgive her. And the author I'm talking about in this case won't take the risk of turning her work into a sideshow at her own expense.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

E-books On Sale Over At Allromanceebooks.com

I don't know the exact details, but I do know that all my books with ravenous romance are on sale for a short time at Allromanceebooks.com. It looks like the RR books have been marked down from 6.99 to 5.24.

Here's a link that will take you to my books. And I'm not totally certain, but I do think all other ravenous romance e-books are on sale there, too. I'm just not sure how long it will last, but I would imagine at least through the weekend.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

It Doesn't Get Much Better Than This...

Liz Taylor made tons of great films and did many wonderful philanthropic things in her life. But if she'd only made one single movie and this had been it, this would have been enough.

R.I.P.


John Irving's LAST NIGHT IN TWISTED RIVER and Reviews

I'm in the middle of reading LAST NIGHT IN TWISTED RIVER, by John Irving, and I wanted to talk about how I feel reaching the middle of the novel. I'll leave a rare amazon review (rare for me) when I'm finished, but I wanted to discuss something I think is important when buying books nowadays.

First, I'm a John Irving fan and have been for years. I read his first novel in college for a contemporary fiction class, and I've read everything he's written since then. And though I like some more than others, I've never been disappointed in the way he combines story with writing style. But more than that, I read his books slowly on purpose to keep them going because I don't want them to end.

And so far, while almost exactly in the middle of LAST NIGHT IN TWISTED RIVER, I've been completely captured by the story and the writing. It's classic John Irving and I don't want it to end.

I'll review it later on amazon, which is something I don't like doing mainly because I think there are already enough people reviewing books. They don't need my opinion as well. But I did want to make a point of saying that if you are thinking of purchasing this book...and if you're a fiction writer in any genre and you haven't read John Irving you damn well should be thinking about reading one of his books just to see how he handles certain situations, with regard to writing style and storyline...please read the reviews with caution. If I didn't know better and I read some of the negative reviews for LAST NIGHT IN TWISTER RIVER I might not have purchased the book.

But I do know better, and I know when a book review can be taken seriously and when it can't...good or bad. And this is an important skill to learn these days, whether you're reading amazon reviews, goodreads reviews, or the many so-called professional review blogs on the Internet. This is one of the reasons why I love and trust Elisa Rolle's review blog: I know she's passionate about books and reviews with her heart. And, unfortunately, it's also one of the reasons why I stay as far away as possible from another romance review blog without the love or the passion, which shall remain nameless. It's an interesting concept. You can tell when the love is there and when the reviewer or blogger is truly passionate about books. Just as you can tell when the reviewer is only doing to garner attention they normally never would have received before the Internet.

Here's an interview with Irving discussing LAST NIGHT IN TWISTED RIVER.


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Peter Paul & Mary - Blowin in the wind

Don't Cancel All My Children: Networkfail

I read an article this morning about ABC having plans to cancel the long running soap, All My Children. You can read the article here, and I've posted it below for those who are too damn lazy to click (like me sometimes).

All I can say is I hope ABC rethinks this decision. Part of the reason ratings are low could be because a lot of people (like me) are watching shows like All My Children at night on soapnet. And if I can't watch it on soapnet at night, I'll DVR it. I don't know if this counts as ratings, but it should. The other reason ratings might be low is because the soap industry needs a little shake-up right now. It's tired. I always thought soaps and romance novels had many similarities. But romance novels have been evolving for the past ten years and soaps haven't changed much in forty years. In fact, the soaps of forty years ago were often more erotic than they are today. And, frankly, I think one of the reasons people watch soaps is for the erotica and escapism, not cheese.

So ABC, you haven't been doing well at keeping up with the times. Actually none of the three networks have been doing very well. (Why do you guys think American Idol is still so f%#king popular? There's nothing else for people to watch.) All you have to do is look back at the Jay Leno prime time nightmare and you'll see a perfect example of Networkfail. People want escapism and they want erotica. You've already got good storylines, now you need a little sex that's tastefully done. Try giving it to them with the soaps and your ratings will soar. I can't tell you how many times I've watched a soap this year and thought, wow, that could have such a hot scene if only...

A daytime landscape without Erica Kane? Say it ain't so! A source close to 'All My Children' has confirmed to TV Squad the series is in jeopardy.ABC could make an announcement regarding the fate of 'All My Children' as soon as today or tomorrow. Despite it being a bigger brand, the soap's sagging ratings have put 'AMC' on the chopping block.If 'AMC' is canceled, ABC could move 'One Life to Live' to California.In recent weeks 'AMC' has delivered record lows in Nielsen ratings. According to Deadline, the soap came in last in the key demographic of women 18–49. It was seen by 463,000 viewers in that demo, down 34 percent compared to last year. The series also came in last in total viewers, grabbing 2.32 million. 'One Life to Live' had 2.36 million during the week of March 7.Since its debut 41 years ago, the series has been a launching ground for many stars including Sarah Michelle Gellar and Amanda Seyfried. Recent Oscar-winner Melissa Leo also had a brief stint on the soap.Viewers will remember Kelly Ripa as Hayley long before she became the co-host of 'Live! With Regis and Kelly.' 'AMC' has also been home to Susan Lucci as Erica Kane, one of the most familiar faces in TV, for more than 30 years. Lucci is the only original cast member still on the series.If 'AMC' bites the dust, ABC could follow the lead of CBS and replace the long-running soap with a game or talk show. CBS replaced 'As the World Turns' with 'The Talk' this season, and 'Guiding Light,' previously the longest running drama in TV history, with 'Let's Make a Deal' in 2009.Stay tuned to TV Squad for more updates 'All My Children.'

Monday, March 21, 2011

Interview with Harvey Klinger From The Gatekeeper's Post

Here's a recent interview with Harvey Klinger, literary agent, from The Gatekeeper's Post, a new publishing blog I've talked about before. I think it's not only interesting, but right on target.

So check out the link. With all the talk about where publishing is going these days, I think there are some valid points made in this interview.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

My Take On .99 E-books and the Type of Reader They Attract...

First, before I even get into the post, I'd like to thank every single reader who has ever purchased one of my e-books for .99. Whenever anyone takes money out of their wallet and buys one of my books, I'm grateful and I hope I didn't disappoint them. For me, as an author, it's as simple as that.

Now that that's out of the way, I wanted to mention a blog post I read the other day about low-balling, pricing e-books at .99, and what type of reader this attracts. I don't know the author in the post, I haven't read this author's work, and I doubt I ever will. I respect this author's right to an opinion, but I can't say I wasn't stunned when I read this post. I'm not even posting a link to the blog post because I don't want to start anything with this author, and because I find it hard to take her very seriously. Not to mention the fact that I think she'll regret her post and I'd rather be civil and not call anymore attention to it.

In a sentence, she believes pricing e-books at .99 is low-balling and that this attracts the wrong kind of reader. I'm still unclear as to what the "wrong" kind or reader is because I didn't read any solid statistics nor did I read any factual examples. I did, however, read a lot of opinion...a lot of blah, blah, blah. And that's fine. It's her opinion and she has every right to share it openly. But I also read a lot of insulting comments about who the "wrong" readers are, and frankly, I was left wondering why this author would even go this far in public. As a reader, I found it insulting. And, unfortunately, I guess that since I actually scan the web for .99 e-books myself sometimes, I'm the "wrong" kind of reader.

I can honestly say it's been a long time since I've disagreed with anyone so much, especially the part about "wrong" readers. I don't think readers can be categorized and placed into boxes. I know, speaking as a reader now, I can't be put in a box. I buy .99 e-books, I shop for e-book bargains, and I still buy e-books that go as high as twenty dollars sometimes if I really want the book. (I'm reading John Irving's, Twisted River e-book right now and I think I paid around 17.00 for it...but it's John Irving, not Betty Z. Summers who self-publishes her own books. In this case I want her book considerably cheaper, and frankly I don't want to hear her complaining about it.) And I think most readers are like me in this sense, especially when it comes to buying e-books. We want them cheaper and we don't care about anything else.

Speaking as an author now, I don't have any choices about how my books are priced. I leave this up to the publisher and I never interfere. I trust all the publishers I work with, because they've been doing this for a long time. And when one of my publishers prices one of my e-books at .99, I know there's a good reason. And when those .99 e-books sell, as I stated above but I'll repeat one more time, I'm grateful to every single reader who made the purchase. I consider all my readers the "right" kind of readers.

I've always felt that building a solid career as an author has a great deal to do with gaining the reader's trust and respecting the reader's opinion. And I don't think I'd lose if I bet that most readers would agree with me that .99 e-books are a good thing for both authors and readers, especially when an author's career is still on the rise. I know all e-books can't be priced at .99, but once in a while it's nice to give the reader a break. And it's just as nice to give the author a break so he or she can build a readership with a reasonably priced book.

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Typical Exchange With An Editor

Yesterday I received an e-mail late in the afternoon from an editor I've worked with many times on Cleis Press books. He's quirky and always interesting. And because I've been working so hard on contracted books for e-publishers, I haven't submitted much to him in the past three years. But once a relationship is established with an editor, it usually lasts forever. And an exchange like this is never a surprise to me.



Editor: Hey Ryan, do you have a short story that's 1200 words or less for an upcoming anthology I'm editing?



Me: I'll check and get back.



Me, two hours later after hunting through my files: Hey, just checked and came up with this story. I've attached it. It's a little longer than what you wanted, about 2500 words, but feel free to cut it down if you want. And you don't have to ask; just edit away. Seriously. The story has been sitting in my files for years and I'd forgotten about it.



Editor, early this morning: Hey Ryan, I have good news and bad. I can't use the story you sent because it's too long. But I can use it for another book I'm working on. Is this okay? Let me know.



Me: Feel free to use it. No problem. Talk to you soon. And sorry I couldn't help out with the other book.

Release Day: You Missed a Spot, Big Guy


Here's all the information about the book, taken directly from Allromanceebooks.com. It can be purchased at the publishers web site, too, www.loveyoudivine.com, an most other online sites where e-books are sold.



Your book is now available for sale at All Romance eBooks!
You can easily edit this text to include a personalized message and then forward to your lists. Readers interested in purchasing the book can click on the "Add to cart" button and instantly download it after checkout!
To create similar promos for other books available at All Romance Ebooks
click here, search for the title you are looking for, then click on the Tell a Friend button and send the promo to yourself.


You Missed a Spot Big GuyBy: Ryan Field
Other books by Ryan FieldPublished By: loveyoudivineISBN # 5043_1015
Word Count: 5036Heat Index
Available in: Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Reader, HTML, Mobipocket (.prc), Rocket, Epub

Read More
About the bookWhen a cute college guy named Rick takes a part time job keeping house for a newly divorced construction worker named David who has a ten year old son, Rick isn’t shy about wearing his tightest pants, his shortest shorts, and his most revealing underwear. Although Rick’s not certain whether or not David will care about what he’s wearing, Rick’s heart beats faster each time he gazes at David’s strong legs and heavy construction boots. When Rick steals quick glances at David’s tool belt, his knees go weak. And when the right circumstances occur and Rick can’t hold back his feelings for David any longer he seizes the opportunity to blatantly seduce him with cunning instincts.But David reacts in a way Rick hadn’t predicted. And though Rick isn’t sure at first about whether or not he’ll keep his part time job, he doesn’t mind taking good care of his big strong construction worker dad while he’s still employed there.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

New Release: March 18th...YOU MISSED A SPOT, BIG GUY


Sometimes in publishing the stars are all aligned and everything works out just right. And that's the way it's been with this book...so far. No one's reviewed it yet, so there's always room for a glitch (smile).

YOU MISSED A SPOT, BIG GUY will be released on March 18th, this Friday. I'll post more links when I get them. It's a short story stand alone e-book that runs 5,000 words, it's m/m erotica with a touch of romance, and it has a very happy ending with hope for the future. Another version of this story was once published in an erotic anthology by a print publisher. I can't recall the name of the anthology right now. But this newly released version is longer, has more of my own personal touches that were originally edited out of the one for the print publisher, and I hope it has more emotion.

And I'd like to thank everyone at my publisher, loveyoudivine.com, for allowing me the chance to publish my short stories as stand alone e-books. I've been writing and publishing short stories for many years. But they've always been included in anthologies and collections. Thanks to loveyoudivine I'm now able to release these stories on their own. And thanks to the readers who have been supporting me since I started doing this. You guys are my boss, I never take your comments for granted, and you've been speaking very loudly in the past five years and I've been trying hard to listen.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

It's Really Me, Not a Robot, a Student At Northwestern, or a Pen Name

After someone pointed me to a link yesterday about my identity, I decided to write this quick post and put it in writing once again. Sometimes I feel like Oprah Winfrey when she tells the world she's not gay.

First, if you need proof, contact Elisa Rolle, the m/m book reviewer. I've met Elisa in person, here in my home, two summers ago when she was traveling through the US. I'm sure she'll back me up.

I'm not a robot, I'm not a student at Northwestern (I think they have an athletic field named Ryan), and Ryan Field is not a pen name. Well, Ryan is my middle name because I don't like my first name. But everyone I know has been calling me Ryan for the past twenty years. So I don't consider this a pen name.

I've used pen names before for various reasons and I don't like doing it. It's hard to promote a book and keep it real with a pen name, for me, and I decided a long time ago that I'd use my real name when I was writing m/m fiction of any kind in order to keep it real.

The few photos I post around the internet are me as well. I don't use fake photos of anyone and I'm not trying to hide what I look like. I'll admit I don't take the best picture in the world. But it is me. And I wouldn't post a fake photo of myself.

I think a lot of this doubt about my identity comes about because I write fast. At least that's where the robot reference originated, but I'm still not sure about that one. I've been writing for almost twenty years, every single day of my life, and it's become part of my daily existence. I don't have to force myself to write. I just sit down and do it; this is what I was trained to do. Even when I was working full time in my businesses I wrote at least 1,000 words a day, which wasn't always easy. Up until I started working for e-publishers, I was in about twenty different anthologies a year. And all that practice paid off in the long run. Now I write anywhere from 3,000 to 4,000 words a day full time, and that makes it easy to write at least a novel a month. I've written novels in two weeks and that's just too stressful. But a novel a month is doable. I also only require about three or four hours of sleep each night. So I work longer hours than most people.

I know that many authors use pen names for their own reasons. And I respect those reasons (I wish they would use solid first names instead of initials...B.Z., E.D., and Y. R. really confuses me and I never remember them when it's time to buy their books. And people have trouble remembering names, forget about initials. But that's none of my business.) I also understand that because the Internet promotes anonymity it's often hard to trust who is real and who isn't. I thought I was connecting with a real person for a year, and then found out he was only using a pen name for publishing reasons. I know the owner and publisher of a small press and he uses pen names and fake identities for every single editor even though he's doing all the editing himself. In other words, it's all fake with this guy.

I think we're all skeptical by now. And I understand when people question my identity. But I can't put it any plainer than this. Pardon the cliche, but I am who I am.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Cover Preview: THE VIRGIN BILLIONAIRE: REVENGE


It's always a busy week when two new books are being released at the same time. This cover preview is for The Virgin Billionaire: Revenge, which is the fourth book in the best selling Virgin Billionaire series. Take a close look at the look in the model's eyes at the top of the cover. That's called revenge. And this revenge threatens everything Jase and Luis have worked to build so far.

NORMAL FOR ONCE, by Jonathan Stephens


I don't usually plug other books or authors here often. But this is a book (and author) I've been following for a couple of years now. I started reading Jonathan Stephens blog maybe five years ago and fell in love with his writing. I also enjoyed his personal posts and I've watched Jonathan and his wife, Lisa, grow from newlyweds to parents. We've talked about queries from time to time and I know he's a perfectionist. He's also a damn nice guy and he follows his heart when he writes.

Jonathan writes those rare YA novels that I think cross over into the mainstream. At least they do for me, and I think they will for others, too. And now he's published NORMAL FOR ONCE on amazon.

This is the kind of book I usually read when I'm not writing. And Jonathan is the kind of writer I prefer to read when I'm not writing. He nails it every single time with regard to writing style. And I always learn something. He knows what he's doing and it comes from within, not by watching what other authors are doing. In fact, I don't think I've come across a new writer with this much talent since I read Jaime Ford's, HOTEL AT THE CORNER OF BITTER AND SWEET. And when I'm not writing, this is how I prefer to spend my spare time.

Here's a description of NORMAL FOR ONCE. Check it out and see what I'm talking about. And, just for the record, if this book does become the hit I think it will become, I take personal satisfaction in knowing that I was one of the first readers to realize what a great author Jonathan Stephens is.


If you wear a mask long enough, people think they know the real you.Abe’s football skills have earned him the nickname “Psycho,” but his actions make the name stick. Hard-hitting defensive lineman known for his hilarious pranks, Abe seems unaware his joking around is losing him friends. That is, until Matt gets so ticked he dares him to play things straight. As quarterback of the football team, Matt is no stranger to stress, but his game-day gambling and flown-the-coup father have strapped him with enough worries that he’s lashing out at the people closest to him. The only person who “gets” Abe is Skye Brennan, Abe’s best (girl)friend for years and the person he’s dying to take things deeper with. Everyone else chalks him up as a prankster, but there’s more to him than they give him credit for. A lesser friend might back down from Matt’s challenge and move on, but not Abe. Not anymore.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Matt Dusk - The Way You Look Tonight - LIVE on TV

Can't get enough of this guy!!


A New Kind of Literary Agent: The E-pub Agent, Saritza Hernandez


I found this in Writer's Digest and wanted to share. I personally believe this is a new trend we'll see and hear more about in the future: E-pub agents. And those who have not been taking e-publishers seriously, might have to start competing sometime soon. I've interviewed Saritza here on the blog, and I'm thrilled to see her mentioned over at Writer's Digest...a publication that has been my own personal favorite (my writer's bible) for the past twenty years.


New Agent Alert: Saritza Hernandez of L. Perkins AgencyPosted by ChuckReminder: Newer agents are golden opportunities for new writers because they're likely building their client list; however, always make sure your work is as perfect as it can be before submitting, and only query agencies that are a great fit for your work. Otherwise, you're just wasting time and postage.
About Saritza: She is specifically an E-Pub Agent. She is looking to represent ebook authors. Follow her on Twitter. She the agency website here.She is seeking: Saritza represents both new and established authors and is currently looking for strong erotic romance in the following sub-genres:Paranormal, sci-fi, steampunk, cyberpunk, fantasy, BDSM, historical (emphasis on Ancient Egypt, Caribbean/MesoAmerican), intercultural and all GLBT-themed erotica for the digital marketplace.How to contact: Find her submission guidelines on her blog andplease send queries to: sh@lperkinsagency.com
The biggest database of agents anywhere isthe 2011 Guide to Literary Agents. Buy it here online at a discount.Want more on this subject?
How to Write a Query Letter.
What Should You Write in the "Bio Paragraph" of a Query Letter.
Why Your Manuscript Can Get Rejected, by Hallie Ephron.
10 Hidden Gifts of Rejection Letters.
Google Alerts and Agents.
Confused about formatting? Check out Formatting & Submitting Your Manuscript.
Read about What Agents Hate: Chapter 1 Pet Peeves.
Want the most complete database of agents and what genres they're looking for? Buy the 2011 Guide to Literary Agents today!

Authors Announcing New Releases In Mass Notifications

I'm going to tread very lightly here because I don't want to piss anyone off. I'm not even sure I have a set opinion about this...I'm talking more in a general sense right now and I'm wondering how other people feel about it.

On any given day, I have at least 75 regular e-mails in my aol account. I'm not going to mention my yahoo account because I use that mainly for yahoo groups and to e-mail people in Italy. My aol e-mails vary between readers, my publishers, other authors I know, family, and a few personal friends with whom I'm in constant contact. And then there are e-mails from people asking about promotional things and advice regarding a book they are writing. And I answer each e-mail the same day.

Lately I've noticed a rash of mass e-mails being sent by authors regarding new book releases. I've had other authors I know tell me they are receiving the same mass e-mails. Most of the time these are notifications from social networks and they can fill up an in-box faster than my mother asking questions about her new iPad. These notification e-mails take time to open and read and they always have that same fake-cheerful used car salesman tone that leaves me questioning the sincerity with which they were written.

I don't do this to other authors. When I have a book released I post about it here on the blog and then post about it on social networks. I've always believed that announcing a new release is more about giving out detailed information than a sales pitch. I've never sent a private message out to masses of strangers (spam?), and especially not to other authors. It's not a big thing in the grand scheme. It's just as easy to delete these notifications, dismiss them, and move to the next e-mail. And when it happens once in a while, I don't think anyone cares. But when it starts happening constantly, I can't help but wonder how other authors feel about it. Or for that matter, how readers feel about it. Like I said, most authors I know don't do this. They find polite, subtle ways to promote their new releases that doesn't include spamming everyone in the universe. I don't mind notifications in Yahoo groups; that's what Yahoo groups are for. And I respect authors who play it safe this way. I also respect them for knowing and understanding that just because you have a large group of friends on facebook and goodreads, these people aren't really your friends and you don't know them personally enough to contact them with a mass notification.

Maybe this form of spamming works and I'm not getting something. Maybe people don't mind mass e-mails and notifications from strangers announcing the release of their new books. But I do know that if an author contacted me privately and told me about his or her new book release, taking the time to give this personal touch, I'd have a great deal of respect for them and I'd look forward to buying and reading the book. I personally love one on one interaction with other authors and can't wait to help them promote their books. But the mass notifications seem so lacking in so many ways. And I don't think I'd want to take a chance doing this myself.

Pushy is okay sometimes. Pushy works sometimes. I've always been attracted to pushy people. But then there are times when pushy becomes obnoxious and out of context.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Cover Preview: YOU MISSED A SPOT, BIG GUY


Here's a cover preview for a new short story e-book coming out soon titled, YOU MISSED A SPOT, BIG GUY. It's not the final, but I wanted to share because I like what it looks like so far.
And I'd like to thank everyone who helped JOLLY ROGER receive a silver star on Allromanceebooks so soon. I didn't expect that.

Friday, March 11, 2011

A Sign of the Times: Pay Attention Publishers and Gatekeepers

I read this on facebook earlier today and decided to post it. It's a simple status update and I'm leaving the person who wrote it anonymous. But I think it's important because it's the kind of feedback I get all the time from my readers.

And I think publishers and those who seem to have all the answers about publishing, should take heed in these words. This is what it's all about. I think Amazon gets it; I think a lot of e-publishers get it. But I'm not sure all publishers and agents get it. We're living in hard times right now and people have re-discovered reading for pleasure. What more could a writer (or publisher) want than to read words like this:

I'm 49 yrs old and this is the first time in my life that I am experiencing "Spring Break"..... I feel like I should go somewhere, but since I'm broke, I guess I'll just read a book and go somewhere in my head.... you authors out there....please keep writing.

Anderson Cooper, Larry King, Donald Trump, and the Pronoun, She

This isn't a rant; just an observation. I copied and pasted the article below for those who hate clicking links. I hate them, so I figured I'd make it easier. But here's the link in case you want to check it out.

This short post is about Larry King referring to Anderson Cooper at a comedy roast for Donald Trump as she instead of he. Frankly, I don't care how Larry King refers to Anderson Cooper. I don't care what Anderson Cooper's sexuality is. To be completely honest, I would have loved to have seen both Larry King and Anderson Cooper boycott the entire Donald Trump affair simply because Donald Trump is so vehemently opposed to equality for the lgbt community.

And what truly bothers me is the way the mainstream media takes a comment like the one Larry King made about Anderson Cooper and runs with it. While I believe that coming out to the world is a good thing, especially the way Ricky Martin did it. I also believe we all have a right to privacy and this includes Anderson Cooper. And the mainstream media should spend more time worrying about how poorly Donald Trump treats the lgbt community instead of worrying about Anderson Cooper's sex life.

Hair jokes were in no short supply at last night's Comedy Central roast of Donald Trump, but the quip that had the audience shocked was when CNN icon Larry King made fun of his former co-worker Anderson Cooper's sexuality.Pretending he was still hosting his now-defunct talk show, King took calls from viewers throughout the country and then tossed to Anderson, whose '360' followed his 'Live' show every night for years."Anderson Cooper is coming up next. Let's see what SHE'S up to," Larry said to the packed house.Anderson, who never talks about his sexuality in public, has been dealing with rumors about his love life ever since he become CNN's biggest star, but never before has a member of the CNN family poked fun at him in such a public way.Even his good friend Kathy Griffin, who loves to tell tales about celebrities, refused to go there when she recently spoke with Howard Stern when he asked if the silver fox was gay."Larry meant no harm," a friend of the newsman tells me. "He was just having a little fun. Larry has huge respect for Anderson and couldn't care less who he chooses to sleep with."Let's hope Anderson is laughing too. The roast airs March 15 on Comedy Central.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

This is the moment (Jekyll and Hyde)

When I got tickets to see this play, Jekyll and Hyde, at The Plymouth Theater ten or eleven years ago, I was looking forward to seeing Linda Edder on stage. But I didn't know much else about the play. And when I started reading reviews about it, I started to become less than thrilled as the day approached. For whatever reason, most reviews were mediocre; some were awful. And driving into the city on a 95 degree day in June didn't make me smile.

However, as is sometimes the case with most reviews of anything, the reviewers were dead wrong. They missed this by a mile. Not only did I love the show and all the music that went along with it, it was my first experience at The Plymouth Theater. It's not the largest theater on Broadway, but it's probably one of the best I've been in.

And now I'm thinking of using this song, This is the Moment, as a wedding song for a scene in my next book, GONE WITH A WINK. I'm just not sure it's appropriate. For a straight wedding I don't think it would be. But for a gay wedding considering all the obstacles gay men and women have to overcome in order to get married, legally or illegally, it might work out very well.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

International Women's Day: Helen Reddy: "I Am Woman", from "The Midnight Special", 1975.

In honor of International Women's Day, here's a piece from The Huffington Post. And I think Helen Reddy said it best with this song many years ago.



Monday, March 7, 2011

The LGBT Community Needs To Boycott Donald Trump Everywhere: Let's Trump Trump This Time

This is not a joke. And it's not media hype either. I heard Donald Trump blast gay marriage in a Fox News interview and posted about it a month ago here.

Those who read this blog know I don't get political on most issues. But this one I can't ignore. So here's another article from The Advocate that's asking for the same boycott on Trump.

Seriously, folks. Donald Trump is going to make a bid to run for President of the United States. I've been watching him in action for a while now. That grand stand with his family on the Oprah Show wasn't an accident. This man is clever and he works with an agenda. I write sneaky characters into my books all the time, trust me on this. He wants to be President. What gets me is that he's been married and divorced more times than any of the gay couples in long term relationships that I know. And I'd like to know where he gets the audacity to even go near the subject of the sanctity of marriage.

So let's stick together this time for once. And make a point of banning and boycotting everything and anything Donald Trump is associated with. Even if you're in the closet, no one will know you're boycotting him privately (we need your closeted support, too). Even if you're not gay and you have a family member or friend who is gay. If we do this in large numbers, we'll have the power to trump Trump!!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Quick Thank You To Readers Who Leave Reviews...

I've ranted a few times in the past about how I think some reviews and ratings on places like goodreads and amazon are bogus. We all know they are there and there's little we can do about them.

But we need book reviews, both readers and authors. It's a system, though sometimes flawed, that works in a general sense.

I've been following the YA Mafia thing all week that's been running rampant all over the net. If you don't know about it, you can google "YA Mafia" and tons of info will pop up. There's so much it's not worth posting a specific link.

What I haven't done in a long time is say thank you to the readers who do leave honest, well thought out reviews and ratings on places like goodreads, amazon, and allromanceebooks. As an author, I appreciate the good and the bad (I really do). I know you took the time out of your busy lives to read my book and I know you took the money out of your pocket to buy it.

I never take this for granted...ever! And I can't thank you enough!!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Highest Rated Books - Best Selling Books..Huh?

It never ceases to amaze me how certain books will receive high ratings and reviews, and then other books will receive mixed reviews and wind up outselling the books with the highest ratings.

And I'm not just talking about my own books here. I've discussed this with other authors and they've all experienced the same thing. If you have over five published books out there there's bound to be at least one that has received stellar ratings but didn't do as well in sales as books with mixed reviews have received.

I can't even begin to explain this. Maybe some books resonate with readers and they can't wait to rate and review them. In other words, something the author did hit home and it affected the reader in some way. This has happened to me before. When I read Anne Tyler's Back When We Were Grownups in 2001 I was going through a small crisis and the book resonated with me...to the point where it actually made me feel good. And at the time, it was the last thing I expected. I was only reading the book to pass time. But I'll never forget the wonderful feeling I experienced when I read the last paragraph. And I've read this book six times since then and I've always experienced the same feeling.

There are very few patterns authors and publishers can follow when it comes to a how a book is going to be received. A few of the books I've had released and didn't have high hopes for actually wound up doing better than I'd imagined they would. There's one short story I'm still scratching my head about. It was published in an anthology by a print publisher five years ago, the editor of that anthology recommened it to another editor for a "Best Of" anthology two years later, and then I released it as a stand alone short e-book and it's been on the fictionwise bestseller list since it was released. (Of course the reviews have been extremely mixed.) And when I wrote this story and submitted it, I never thought it would sell well at all. I just figured I was submitting something I normally didn't do...it was actually more of an experiment.

The only real pattern I've noticed over the last twenty years is that you can't predict anything. And, the books with only the highest ratings never sell quite as well as the books with the mixed ratings. (There will always be fewer ratings for the books with excellent reviews because they didn't sell as many copies.) If you don't believe me, check out a few bestselling books on goodreads.com or Amazon.com. Then check out a few books with nothing but five star ratings. It's interesting to examine. And you start to wonder whether or not readers actually do pay attention to excellent ratings and reviews as much as they pay attention to buzz and hype. I even know some authors who claim the worst reviews help their sales. Go figure!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Why This Editor Always Gives Feedback To Authors Who Submit To Anthologies...

I'm going to be posting a few things about the anthology I edited, LASTING LUST, in future posts next week. But I wanted to explain a little about how the process works for me, when I'm working as an editor, with regard to handling the authors who submitted short stories for the book.

First, and I'd like to make this clear, the reason I handle authors with respect is because I am an author and I've been treated shabbily by certain editors who think they are above reproach. Not all editors are like this. Most are very nice to work with and they treat their submissions and their authors with respect. But there are a few who seem to be either too high and mighty to deal with lowly authors, or they simply don't give a damn. And though I hate to admit this, I find this superior attitude mostly exists with editors who work with traditional print publishers, not with e-publishers. I'd like to make it very clear that all my experiences with e-publishers as an author have been more than positive. Editors who work for e-publishers do, in fact, treat authors with respect...so far.

Either way, it sux whenever an author submits a short story to an editor for an anthology and they aren't treated well. And by well I'm talking about a basic reply regarding the author's submission and a brief comment as to why the author was rejected. This is what I did with LASTING LUST when I rejected authors who submitted to me. It's basic courtesy, it's ethical, and it shows professional respect.

But not all editors who put together anthologies feel this way. And the ironic thing is these editors aren't all that special themselves. They always reminded me of the snotty salesclerk in a high end department store working for minimum wage who looks down on the customers. And when editors look down on authors who are submitting their work, they aren't much different from these snotty salesclerks.

Ultimately, editors make their own rules when it comes to how they deal with authors. And my own personal rule when I'm editing is to always treat the author with respect. Every single author who submitted something to the LASTING LUST anthology received a reply from me. In some cases, I built lasting relationships with these authors. I told them why they were being rejected and thanked them for submitting. In each case, they were being rejected because the story didn't fit with the theme of the book. It had nothing to do with the quality of their work and it was nothing personal. And I think authors need to know this. I know I like to know this when I'm submitting something to an editor.

Release Day: Jolly Roger


Today's the release day for another short story e-book titled, JOLLY ROGER. Here's a link where it can be purchased at the publisher's web site. And I'm sure it either is, or will be within days, available on most major web sites where e-books are sold.

Another version of this story was originally published in a print book by a large lgbt publisher. This was years ago and I own the rights so I decided to release it as a stand alone e-book now, with more than a few editorial changes. Though I loved the print book this story was in and I never thought I'd release it anywhere else after it was published, there have been a lot of changes since that time and I think readers who are getting into m/m erotic romance would rather purchase individual short stories that cost less than purchase entire anthologies at higher prices not knowing whether or not they are going to love each author. The cost to print short stories as individual print books would have been unrealistic until recently, and publishers rarely ever did this. With regard to m/m fiction the only short story I can think of that was published this way was "Brokeback Mountain." But with the advent of digital books, it's become reality and both readers and authors are enjoying individual short stories now. In other words, readers have more choices now.
I know I was disappointed in the anthology I edited for Ravenous Romance, titled, LASTING LUST. Not because I don't like the book. It's actually one of my favorites. I'm going to do a post about this soon and explain things. I think readers will be surprised to learn a few facts about this book I've never discussed before.
Anyway, back to Jolly Roger...

The tag line reads:

The Untold Story of Jolly Roger, a Pirate Who Either Left Them Guessing or Begging for More…

And the cover copy says:


From the origin of his name to the ways he spent his free time, Jolly Roger had always been able to fool them all, including the best historians. And though there were indeed rumors about Jolly’s favorite way to pass the time, only the strongest and the best men ever knew for sure whether or not those decadent rumors were true. Captain Hargrove was one of those men. On a warm night on an exotic island, Hargrove discovered what all the rumors were about, when Jolly Roger dropped his pants and pulled off his shirt. As Jolly’s handsome young crew members stood watching, Hargrove found something he’d needed for a very long time, something the women in his life had never been able to offer. Left with no defenses and no way to turn back, his only choice was to grab Jolly by the back of the head, yank him to the ground, and plunge into the most memorable night of his life, with his fists braced for battle, his chest heaving, and his pants around his ankles.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

What Is a Blurb?

For a long time, as least as far as I always knew, a blurb in publishing meant a comment of praise...a good, short review...from another author about a book. It's used as a promotional tool on book covers. I've written them and requested them many times. Blurbs have always been, for me, an extra added bonus for readers to see how another author feels about a book before the reader makes the purchase. And authors take this seriously. They don't just write blurbs for other authors in an off-handed manner. And when you see a blurb, you know the author really liked the book enough to put his or her name on the line.

But the definition of blurb doesn't stop there. I've been seeing different definitions of blurbs on social networks, and a lot of people are now referring to blurbs in several different ways. With the advent of new authors entering the arena, a lot of the old terms are either changing or taking on multi-purposes because the authors aren't familiar with the jargon. And they are all correct. So here are a few quotes from wiki about blurbs I think nail it pretty well:

A blurb is a short summary or some words of praise accompanying a creative work, without giving away any details that is usually referring to the words on the back of the book jacket but also commonly seen on DVD and video cases

The concept of a "brief statement praising a literary product" dates back to medieval literature of Egypt from the 14th century. The concept was known as taqriz in medieval Arabic literature.[1]
The word blurb originated in 1907. American humorist Gelett Burgess's short 1906 book Are you a bromide? was presented in a limited edition to an annual trade association dinner. The custom at such events was to have a dust jacket promoting the work and with, as Burgess' publisher B. W. Huebsch described it,
"the picture of a damsel — languishing, heroic, or coquettish — anyhow, a damsel on the jacket of every novel"
In this case the jacket proclaimed "YES, this is a 'BLURB'!" and the picture was of a (fictitious) young woman "Miss Belinda Blurb" shown calling out, described as "in the act of blurbing."
[2]
The name and term stuck for any publisher's contents on a book's back cover, even after the picture was dropped and only the complimentary text remained.

A blurb on a book or a film can be any combination of quotes from the work, the author, the publisher, reviewers or fans, a summary of the plot, a biography of the author or simply claims about the importance of the work. Many humorous books and films parody blurbs that deliver exaggerated praise by unlikely people and insults disguised as praise.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail - "Makes Ben Hur look like an Epic"
1066 and All That - "We look forward keenly to the appearance of their last work"
The Harvard Lampoon satire of
The Lord of the Rings, entitled Bored of the Rings, deliberately used phony blurbs by deceased authors on the inside cover. One of the blurbs stated "One of the two or three books...", and nothing else.
In the 1980s,
Spy Magazine ran a regular feature called "Logrolling in Our Time" which exposed writers who wrote blurbs for one anothers' books.[1]
On the Internet a blurb is used to give a brief written description or promotion of an article or other larger work. The visual equivalent to blurbs are trailers, in particular teaser trailers.

Another Cleis Press Book Up For a Gaybie Award: COLLEGE BOYS


Yesterday I posted about the SKATER BOYS anthology that's up for a Gaybie award. And while I was getting links together, I also noticed another Cleis Press book I'm in is up for an award as well.

This book is titled, COLLEGE BOYS, and it was put together and edited by Shane Allison. Once again, I'm thrilled to be part of this. There are a lot of great authors in this book, including Neil Plakcy, who edited SKATER BOYS. Here's the link where you can see who else has been nominated. I'm honestly not very familiar with this site. But it looks interesting and there's a long list of categories, filled with lgbt entertainment.
(Update to this post: My short story in this book is titled, "Off Campus, Man." But I forgot I recently released this short story as a stand alone e-book with another publisher, after several changes and resvises, under the title, "Dirty Little Virgin." It can be purchased alone, as an e-book, for $2.25 at most large online web sites where e-books are sold...here's the link to allromanceebooks.com... one of my own personal favorite e-book stores because it's so easy to use)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

My Short Story - SKATER BOYS Anthology: Nominated For Best Erotic Fiction - 2011 GAYBIE AWARDS


I just heard that a book I'm in, SKATER BOYS, edited by Neil Plakcy and published by Cleis Press, was nominated for the 2011 Gabie Awards. Here's the link where you can vote. And there are other categories for other mediums and genres you can vote for too.


My short story in SKATER BOYS was titled, "In This Our Day." And although it is erotic to a degree, I'd have to admit this is one of my more romantic stories. And it is also about a May - December romance between a nice guy in his forties and a younger guy in his twenties.


I've read the entire book myself and I liked all the stories, and I'm thrilled to be part of a book that's been nominated for a Gaybie. I also love being in books edited by Neil Plakcy. I've been in Lambda books that were either nominated or won a Lambda Award. But this is a first for a Gaybie. The print book can be purchased here, on Amazon, as well as the Kindle version.


However, as a side note, even though I'm thrilled about being in this book and being part of a book that was nominated for a Gaybie, I'd like to stress that when an author like me submits a short story to a publisher for a book like this I'm only paid a flat fee. For this book, as I recall, the flat fee was $60.00. I make no money at all on the back end, and this includes all digital sales.


I have no complaints about this at all. I knew what I was doing when I submitted the book and signed the contract. I wanted to work with Neil Plakcy and I love Cleis Press books. The flat fee payment is the way things are done, and I don't see this changing anytime soon. But I'd also like readers (and book pirates who seem to think we're making huge bucks here) to know that while I'm promoting this book right now in this post, it's truly because I love it and I'm thrilled about the Gaybie, and it's not because I'm making any money at all with regard to sales, digital or print. In other words, I don't have to promote it at all. There's nothing in it for me other than the fact that I love the book and I think readers will love it just as much.
And, there's another Cleis Press book I'm in that's also been nominated for a Gaybie. It's titled, COLLEGE BOYS, and I'll post more about that one tomorrow. I just thought it would be better to post about each book individually, with respect to the editors.