Category Archives: Ryan Field

>Well Hung by the Chimney by EM Lynley, Ryan Field, and Chloe Stowe

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Well Hung by the Chimney
Authors: E.M. Lynley, Ryan Field, Chloe Stowe
Publisher: Ravenous Romance
Pages: 250
Book Cover Rating:5

4 KISSES

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Blurb:

Alec has a week to close a big takeover deal or lose his job, so when the buyer, Brant Linton, heads off to a tropical island for the holidays, Alec has no choice but to follow. But Brant’s sister has forbidden any business during the trip and Alec is forced to pretend he’s Brant’s boyfriend. Until business turns pleasurable in EM Lynley’s THE CHRISTMAS BONUS.

Best-selling author Ryan Field brings back Lance and Nathan, two high school lovers who reunited on Christmas Eve, as they now explore their new relationship a year later and find the true meaning of Christmas in THE CHRISTMAS GIFT.

And finally join Aaron and John, the military pilot and doctor from Chloe Stowe’s FOREVER BOUND, as they dance through another holiday of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” in FOREVER BOUND WITH TINSEL.

Review:

I was asked to review one story out of the three included with this anthology and ended up reading two of them.

The first one written by EM Lynley, The Christmas Bonus, is a story about 2 very big corporal business men who live their lives around their jobs. Brant owns his own business and Alec is the man who is trying to land a deal that will ensure his position with his company. However, things aren’t as easy as all that. Alec does his very best to get the wealthy business owner to sign on the dotted line and he’ll do whatever it takes to see that done. Brant makes Alec work hard for that signature and when he leaves town for the holidays with the contract unsigned, Alec takes action and does what he needs to do so he can save his job.

The author did a great job with building the characters, and setting. The plot was interesting with the added dash of angst. I really enjoyed the time I spent with the characters in this story, even the kids added to the plot.

Ryan Field wrote The Christmas Gift. This is a story about two lovers who lost touch for ten years. They were high school secret in the closet lovers from a small town where being gay was frowned upon. After graduation one man is married and has a child, the other moves up in the mountains and opens his own business. Then they meet again and one is now a sheriff and the other still owns his own business and they finally get together. Took a minute to get the sheriff out of the closet so to speak but he does and he goes for the man he loves. It’s a sweet love story and great character development. And the neat part here? The characters are real, true to life with money issues and doubts, and insecurities, just like Real Life people! I think my favorite part was when they wake up in bed with a third party and had no idea how he got there…well…one knew but the other didn’t and it was funny. (no, this is not a ménage) They left the guy in the room.

I truly had a good time with this story and the characters. Ryan never disappoints.

Reviewer: Michele

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>Guest Blog: Ryan Field

>Friday, December 3, 2010

Readers As Consumers: Research Before You Purchase

The other day an author friend told me one of my books was mentioned at the bottom of a review for another book. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a great review for me or the other author, however, there was one part of the review that really bothered me from a practical business POV. Both as a reader and an author. And no, this isn’t a rant about a poor review. This is more consumer oriented and I’m looking at this from an objective reader’s POV, not as a disgruntled author.


Evidently, the person who reviewed this book, and then mentioned my book, makes all his e-book purchases on one large retail web site. I’m not going to mention names of web sites, because I’ve seen this happen in several places and it wouldn’t be fair to single anyone out. And it’s not important who the reviewer was in this case because his review actually turned out to be a very enlightening. One of the comments the reviewer made about my book was that it was only a 30 minute read, but no reader could actually know it was this short unless they bought the book.


I’m not going to mention the book because I’m not here to promote anything right now. But it was one of those short stand alone e-books that has become a very popular format with a lot of authors, publishers, and readers these days. In other words, this was a short story, with a length of just over 5,000 words and a reading time of 15-21 minutes, and it was priced accordingly.


But it seems this reviewer was under the impression the book was longer, in spite of the price. And although I do believe that when someone reviews a book on a professional review site they should know all the information about the book, I can understand why he’d think this. On this particular retail web site where he bought the book, I didn’t notice a word count or an actual reading time. Under the product details, all I saw was a file size. And if a reader is anything like me, a file size means absolutely nothing. Speaking as a reader (and a computer idiot), I know reading time, I know word count, and I know page numbers. But when you get into file sizes and things like KB’s, I go blank. And because I buy most of my e-books on publisher web sites, I never noticed the ambiguity on this particular retail web site.


So I did a little research to see how other web sites display the product details with the e-books they sell. And I found a huge difference. For example, allromanceebooks.com lists a word count very clearly, which for me is the best indicator. And fictionwise.com mentions actual reading time, and then goes on to categorize books as S (short), M (medium), and L (long). No problem there; a huge round of applause for ARe and Fictionwise. There are several others that give these details as well, and most publisher web sites make product details just as clear.


I wrote a short blog post about this earlier in the week, and since then I’ve had several authors contact me and tell me they’ve been experiencing similar situations regarding product details and book lengths (we do take this seriously). Readers have left disgruntled comments in customer reviews of e-books because they felt as though they’ve been cheated. They thought they were buying a full-length book and they wound up with a short story stand alone instead. And from what I’ve seen, I can’t blame the reader if they only shop for e-books on a web site that doesn’t make the details clear. For many readers, remaining with one web site makes them feel safe and comfortable. And they tend to trust larger retail web sites more than smaller sites.


The only solution I see is to try to get the information out there as much as possible so readers know exactly what they are purchasing when they buy an e-book. Frankly, I may even start writing book lengths into the cover copy of my short story stand alones from now on. If web sites don’t want to give out all the product details to idiots like me who don’t know file sizes, I’ll do it myself in my cover copy. This way there isn’t any confusion and no one can say they didn’t know all the facts before they made a purchase. And I also think it’s important to get the word out to readers and let them know that if they have any questions about buying a book, there are places like ARe and Fictionwise where they can get all the information they need. And it only takes minutes to do this. But they have to know, especially the readers who are just getting into e-books and e-readers.


As an author, it really does bother me when a reader spends their hard earned money on a book and winds up disappointed in the length of the book. Or if they feel cheated because they feel they didn’t get enough information before they made the purchase. I’ve owned two small businesses and my first goal with each business was always catering to the consumer. I always felt an obligation to treat the consumer well and give them the best service possible, and as an author I feel this same obligation now.


So please take the time to let your readers know what they are buying. And don’t assume they know anything. And readers, please take the time to research what you are buying. I personally think it’s a great idea to have an accessable e-mail address so readers can actually contact the author with any questions they might have about a book. I post my e-mail on my blog, and you’d be amazed at how many readers will, in fact, ask me questions about a particular book before they make a purchase. One even wanted to know the ending of a book, and I told her. She thanked me and said she wasn’t interested. Which was fine with me. Though sometimes you might even lose the sale of a book because the reader winds up not interested after you’ve answered their questions, I do think the reader will appreciate it and consider buying your next book or story instead.

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>Down the Basement by Ryan Field

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Down the Basement

Author: Ryan Field
Publisher: Love You Divine
Pages: 24
POV: 1st
Scene Setting: Modern Day College Campus Dorms
Book Cover Rating: 4

5 KISSES

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Blurb:

In this highly erotic story of gay cross-dressing, one young man named Rush learns what it’s like to live out the fantasy of a lifetime with four masculine college football jocks during a wild costume party in a campus frat house. And though Rush is apprehensive at first, hoping that the drunken, stoned football players won’t discover that he’s really another guy, all of his fears are calmed when one of the guys quietly admits, with a huge smile, that he knows Rush is really a guy dressed as a girl.

While the Halloween party is going on upstairs in the frat house, there’s another little party going on down the basement, where a nice-looking, young guy who can pass for a sexy young woman learns how to take care of four athletic guys at the same time without being discovered. Though the story becomes tense at times, and it’s classic gay erotica without apology, there is a very happy ending with strong promise of unexpected love and romance in the future.

Review:

This is the first time I’ve ever read a cross-dressing story. And honestly? I didn’t even read the blurb before I loaded it on my reader. I just saw this name: Ryan Field. So, it was a definite read. The story is short but it packs a punch because Ryan has this knack of fleshing his characters out with short well structured sentences.

This is about Rush, a senior in college who considers himself no different than anyone else he goes to school with…Well other than he has a secret passion for lipstick, earrings and very high heels. Well, he gets the perfect chance to put together the most awesome Halloween outfit ever. One that he has spent years inventing. Rush is five feet, six inches tall, blonde hair, blue eyes, and short sandy brown hair. No one thought he was gay, nor did they know that his passion. But the thought of shaving my entire body to the point where every conceivable inch of skin was smooth and soft, and then putting on a tight corset, black stockings and dangerous stilettos gave me an erection that lasted for hours. Good sex for me was all about dressing up.

Don’t get Rush wrong though, he loves being a man, had no issues with that part, he just loves dressing up. Now, on the night of the party he wasn’t cruising for men, he just wanted to get out and dress like a sexy woman and tease those men with none the wiser. He tanned for a month before the party and he purchased a long blonde wig. The general costume consisted of a black-beaded evening bag, a short black taffeta skirt, a skintight, black lace corset trimmed in silver, a black mask that covered half my face and six-inch black stilettos. Don’t know about you, but to me he sounds gorgeous.

At the party Rush blends right in, well he actually stands out a bit because he’s so sexy and he immediately attracts the attention of a football player. One of those players asks him to go to the basement with him and his three friends to smoke a joint and Rush says why not? So while I’m cringing as I’m reading just knowing something was going to happen to the guy, he’s headed down the stairs with four big football players. Drunk ones, ones that see a lovely sexy woman dressed to the hilt and I was biting my lip shaking my head and mumbling no, they’ll hurt you!

I’m not going to give any more of this away but I will tell you that Ryan Field CAN write some HOT sex! His characters are very well developed, even the football players who only want one thing from the lovely vixen. Rush actually ends up meeting his next partner that night, and let me just say, the young football player loves a man who dresses to the hilt.

Reviewer: Michele

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>Valley of the Dudes by Ryan Field

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Valley of the Dudes
by Ryan Fields
Publisher: Ravenous Romance
Pages: 268
POV: 3rd
Scene Setting: Modern Day New York and California
Book Cover Rating: 4

5 KISSES

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Blurb:

In this M/M adaptation of the classic novel, Valley of the Dolls, an innocent young man named Rush Goodwin leaves behind his family, his longtime boyfriend, and the safety of his small New England town to find a new life that’s filled with adventure and excitement in New York City. Though he’s not sure exactly what he wants in life, he’s willing to take a few daring chances along the way to find out. It doesn’t take long for him to make two new best friends, Cody and Anderson, who are just as young an innocent as he is when the story begins. The only difference between them and Rush is that they both have faithful partners and Rush is alone. But that doesn’t last long. When Rush meets his new boss, handsome Lance Sharp, it’s love at first sight and the beginning of a turbulent relationship that is rarely without conflict throughout the rest of the book. While Rush and his friends are all moving forward and climbing their respective ladders of success, they each learn, in different ways, that nothing in life is perfect. Especially not the fame and fortune they thought they all wanted. And in order to deal with the stress of success, they all turn to drugs for comfort. And in time, this leads them all on a downward spiral that ruins their relationships and ultimately threatens their lives. In the end, after suffering painful disappointments and serious setbacks that almost ruin him, Rush learns the true meaning of what life is all about for a gay man of his generation. And he does this without drugs and fame and fortune, with the help of true love and the one goal he never expected he could reach.

Review:

Ryan Field has given a new meaning to the word—Dudes, in this story. He created six powerful characters who made me mad, laugh, and cry. Ryan held nothing back, he let it go and came up with a wonderful story about six friends who meet in their twenties and go through life together.

Valley of the Dudes has two meanings behind the title. Let’s start with the obvious meaning. We have Rush, a young lawyer from a small town who lives with his mom and aunt, and dating the same guy for years. He has a safe boring life and it’s one he’s tired with. He doesn’t love his boyfriend, he isn’t fond of his job, and he’s sick of living with mom and auntie so he applies for a position as a celebrity lawyer in New York and within two weeks he leaves his old life behind to start anew.
In his new position as a junior lawyer he meets the love of his life, Lance Sharp who is that and then some. He’s Rush’s boss, he’s successful, and hot as hell. He’s also a player and a few times throughout the story I wanted to slap him. While on a mission for the big boss, Rush meets an adorable Cody who has a voice that captivates Rush. Turns out that Cody lives in the same apartment building Rush does, so later that night they bump into one another and Cody talks Rush into going to watch him perform on stage at a night club with a friend of his. This is where Rush meets the very amazing, Roy.

Now, Roy is Cody’s boyfriend. He’s drop dead model gorgeous and he loves Cody to pieces. He’s all about taking care of Cody’s every need and he loves every minute of it. On stage with Cody is Joey and Joey’s boyfriend is Anderson. Roy is a music teacher, Anderson is a model, Cody and Joey are performers, and Lance is their lawyer, agent.

Overnight Joey and Cody are turned into stars. One with a singing contract and the other with a TV show contract. They all relocate to California to begin their new lives, leaving Lance and Rush behind. During a meeting Rush gets news that has him rushing back to the small town he left not long ago and Lance shows up. I was all happy thinking good for Rush, he gets his man. Well, after a week together Lance gives Rush that I’m not the type to settle down with one guy line. He breaks Rush’s heart. (Slap One)

Over in California Joey and Anderson are doing well, the TV show is a hit they buy a house and live the American dream. Across town we have a very bratty Cody and Roy. Cody has discovered partying and he loves it. He quickly grows addicted to drugs, drinking, and dudes.

Here is where the other meaning of dudes comes to play. Ryan Field should have a pat on the back for this one. Dudes are actually uppers I think. Pills. Cody grows addicted to them overnight and before we know it, Roy is at his wits end with his bratty lover. Cody actually had the nerve to make out with two other men in his own pool in front of Roy! Needless to say, Roy leaves that brat and I was cheering him on but I knew how much he loved Cody so it was sad at the same time. Cody ends up with a deep in the closet case controlling bastard. HA! And he almost kills himself, but does he ever grow up?

Ryan brings us back to New York to visit Rush again, and low and behold that cutie lands a job as an underwear model, to start that is. Eventually he becomes a world famous model, known all over and also addicted to drugs. I think it’s like five years later that he sees Lance again and yep they end up together again. This time for an unknown amount of time and they were truly happy. Or so I thought. That is until Lance goes off to New York with that brat Cody. (Slap Two)

Back to Cali to see the beginning to the end of Joey and Anderson. Something so terribly wrong happens here that I cried. No where else did I cry in the story but here. I wanted to slap Ryan. I can’t even talk about it without getting misty eyes so I’m not gonna.

I don’t know how many years pass throughout the story, I lost track but we are taken on a hell of a journey with these men. There is so much that happens but the two that remain the strongest with me is Joey and Anderson. They are my favorites. Cody is a brat and let me just say that he’d better behave himself from here on out. He’s lucky the man who never stopped loving him took him back. And Lance and Rush?

I’m not sharing that either. Why give everything away? You’ll just have to read the book. Ryan did a wonderful job with character development here I am so totally impressed. I haven’t stopped thinking about these six men and I finished the story days ago. Sex? Oh yes, there’s sex. This is Ryan Field! He’s amazing on all levels.

Reviewer: Michele

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>Shakespeare’s Lover by Ryan Field

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Shakespeare’s Lover

By Ryan Field
Ravenous Romance
192 Pages
4.5 KISSES
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Blurb:

When an athletic college senior, Jude Carmichael, is asked to write a play for St. Dymphna College for Men, he takes on the job with enthusiasm. It’s l969 and the world is changing, so Jude decides to write a play about William Shakespeare’s fictional love life and how it might have affected Shakespeare while he was writing Romeo and Juliet. However, as the months pass and his deadline approaches, Jude is stuck and can’t figure out a suitable ending…until he meets the best muse he’s ever known, an adorable little guy with big brown eyes named Declan Lucas. Declan is an innocent young freshman at Southern Memorial College for Men, St. Dymphna’s arch rival. Declan’s abusive father is the president of Southern Memorial and he expects Declan to follow in his footsteps. But the only thing Declan has ever wanted to do in life is act on the stage. And when his father refuses to allow him to be in his own school play that year because acting is socially inferior, Declan decides to secretly audition for a part in St. Dymphna’s play instead. This is against the rules; Southern Memorial students aren’t allowed to be in St. Dymphna plays. But he does it anyway. With the help of a good friend, Declan dresses up as an attractive young woman and winds up getting the female lead in St. Dymphna’s play, Shakespeare’s Lover. Though everyone at St. Dymphna is fooled by Declan’s disguise, and they are thrilled to have found the perfect young woman for the part, it doesn’t take long for Jude Carmichael to figure out Declan is really the most wonderful young man he’s ever met. And when he does, he’s not shy about letting Declan know how he feels. While they put together one of the most romantic plays ever produced by St. Dymphna College, and everyone thinks Declan is really a woman named Gill, Jude and Declan fall more deeply in love. Though they can’t be seen together in public unless Declan is dressed as a woman, they find creative ways to meet in private so Declan can be a man. If all the world’s a stage, Declan and Jude prove that there is steamy action in the wings…but will they be able to find a future together?

Review:

The year is 1969 and the setting New Orleans. Jude Carmichael is a college senior at St. Dymphna’s College for Men, and he’s an aspiring playwright. When his play is selected by the school for their annual Spring production, Jude faces a quandary. He has been unable to finish the last scene, and he seems to have no muse.

During auditions Jude encounters a young woman named Gill who is reading for the female lead in the play. Instantly he is taken by her, and it confuses him. Jude has already identified as gay, and he’s comfortable with his same-gender attractions. The fact that he is so drawn to this young lady perplexes him. When he offers her the lead role in the play, things begin to heat up. He soon discovers that Gill is not a woman at all. Gill is really Declan, the son of the college president at Southern Memorial, which is the chief rival of St. Dymphna’s.

This is not the first story by Ryan Field that I have read, and I must readily admit that it won’t be the last. He demonstrates a certain quality in his writing that is appealing to me. I guess I would have to describe it as being fluid. His prose is very smooth—very readable.

What I especially enjoyed about this particular story was the characterization of the protagonists, Jude and Declan. Jude is presented as a protective and heroic figure, while Declan is sensitive and delicate—a damsel in distress, so to speak. This is my absolute favorite type of love story. I most enjoy a gay romance where the central characters are not presented as physical and emotional equals, but rather where they each have needs and attractions which are fulfilled by their contrasting partner.

It was impossible not to fall in love with the sweet and soft-hearted Declan, and to yearn for him to develop his self-esteem and a little backbone. Contrarily, it was quite delicious to see the raunchy bad-boy persona of Jude and to envision his big biceps and cocky swagger. I understood completely why Declan was so taken by him, and I was a bit swept off my feet seeing the way that Jude became obsessed with claiming Declan as his own.

The story was classically comedic in that the central characters faced the judgment and militaristic control of an oppressive establishment. The primary nemesis in the story was Declan’s father, and he of course did not approve of his son’s relationship with Jude nor of his involvement in the school play.

Shakespeare’s Lover by Ryan field is a beautiful romance which contains sizzling hot erotica which is presented tastefully and romantically. Some of the dialogue in the story is a bit over-the-top, but I’m of the opinion that this hyperbole was intentional. The vernacular of the 60’s sometimes sounds rather cheesy by today’s standards. While some of the secondary characters seem a bit outlandish and overblown, they add spice and humor to the story, and their exaggerated personalities are easily forgivable because of what they add to the plot.

Generally speaking, I loved the book and recommend it highly. Shakespeare’s Lover by Ryan field is a touching and romantic story by a truly impressive author.

Review by Jeff

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>Ryan Field Interview

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Ryan Field

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions, Ryan.

Thank you for doing the interview. From what I’ve seen and read so far about this new blog, I’m looking forward to reading the posts.

Can you tell us a little bit about your background?
I went the Fairleigh Dickinson University, Florham Madison Campus, and graduated with a degree in English with a concentration in Journalism. My first job in publishing was working for Conde Nast in NY, as an associate editor. But I found that while I loved to edit, there wasn’t enough time (or energy) to write fiction. So I left Conde Nast, opened my own art gallery, and started writing fiction part time. My gallery was open seven days a week for over ten years, and I was a hands-on business owner. I repped hundreds of artists, built a client list from all over the world, and during the down time I wrote fiction. Most of what I wrote back then was short stories for lgbt publishers like Alyson Books, Cleis Press, and STARbooks Press. But I also did at least two stories a year for magazines.

What was your first book and how long did it take to get it published?
My first book still hasn’t been pubbed. It’s mainstream fiction and I stopped shopping it to focus strictly on lgbt fiction for a while. My first m/m romance novel was AN OFFICER AND HIS GENTLEMAN, which is loosely based on the storyline from the film, but markedly different because it was written with male characters.

When did you start writing m/m romance? What about this genre interested you the most?
I started writing m/m romance over fifteen years ago. But back then there wasn’t as much of a market for m/m romance as there is nowadays. So I wrote a great deal of erotica, and jumped at every opportunity I saw when a call for m/m romance came along. A few of my short stories are in older “Best Romance” anthologies by Cleis Press and Alyson Books.

What interested me most about the genre is that it keeps expanding. I would have loved to have had the opportunity to read more m/m romances when I was growing up. The m/m genre didn’t even exist. Everything for the lgbt community was lumped into one genre, “Gay-Lesbian,” and the choices weren’t there.

How long did it take you to get published? How many books have you written thus far?
I started getting pubbed right out of college, with lgbt publishers, including magazines and reviews. They were always short stories, often written with different pen names. Unfortunately, I’ve lost track of a few of the earlier stories I wrote. Everything was done in hard copy and there are many stories I don’t have in electronic files. And when I sold one story, I’d just forget about it and move right on to the next without thinking twice. But I’ve started keeping better records. Right now, not including the anthologies and collections I’ve been in, I’ve had twenty-five novels published. Most of them are with my name, Ryan Field, and a few are pg rated hetero romances written with different pen names.

Do you write full time?
I do right now. But this is just in the past few years. I’ve always been a business owner, writing part time whenever I got the chance. When I sold my business, I decided to write full time.

Looking back was there something in particular that helped you to decide to become a writer? Did you choose it or did the profession choose you?
It chose me. At first, in school, it came very easily and I loved it. And I was always inspired by reading a great deal of fiction.

On a typical writing day, how would you spend your time?
I’m very strict when it comes to routines, to the point where I always begin a new novel or story on a Friday. I’m usually up very early and I go for a forty-five minute run every day of the week. I begin writing at nine in the morning and don’t stop until four or five in the afternoon. I take a break for a few hours, and then go back to my office and edit everything I wrote earlier that day for about four hours. I like to produce about two to four thousand words a day, depending on how fast it comes to me. Sometimes I take weekends off, and sometimes I don’t.

Do you write right through or do you revise as you go along?
It’s always different for me. If I think something needs to be revised, I’ll either make a note or just go right back and take care of it.

When it comes to plotting, do you write freely or plan everything in advance?
Many times plots change while I’m writing. But I always know the basic plot of the next book I’ll be writing while I’m still working on the present book. I just completed a novel yesterday, and I’ve been writing down notes for the next novel for the past two weeks. When the ideas come to me, I like to write them down so I don’t forget them.

What kind of research do you do before and during a new book?
I usually do the research while I’m writing. It’s important to get the facts right all the time. In “Valley of the Dudes,” the copyeditor, Jen Safrey, caught something and I had to go back and research it. I had to know whether or not an attorney from Connecticut would be able to practice law in New York, because one of the characters was a young lawyer who wanted to move from Connecticut to New York and practice law. This one took a while to research, and it was only two or three lines in the book. The laws are different from state to state and I wanted to get it right. In the book I just finished, the research I did for one simple fact took longer than I thought it would. The novel is set in l978, and I wanted to know when the word “gay” started being used in the mainstream.

How much of yourself and the people you know manifest into your characters? How do you approach development of your characters? Where do you draw the line?
I rarely ever use anything directly from my own life in my fiction. It would be too dull  I do, however, develop characters based on many of my own experiences as a gay man, and this includes the erotic scenes. There are only a few things in the books I’ve written that I haven’t personally experienced when it comes to erotica and romance. There are places I don’t go, because I haven’t experienced certain things. But it’s not because I draw a line. It’s because I don’t want to write about something I can’t be sure about.

How long does it take for you to complete a book you would allow someone to read? Do you write straight through, or do you revise as you go along?
I usually finish a book, go right to edits, and then send it off to the editor. The only people who ever read what I’ve written before it goes to publication are the editor, and then copy editor. I like to keep things simple. And rather than writing” straight through,” I like to think of it as going “gaily” forward.

Writers often go on about writer’s block. Do you ever suffer from it, and what measures do you take to get past it?
I’ve never had that problem. There’s always something to write about. Plus, I had good teachers in college. One actually taught me how to write a short story on the color blue as an exercise.

When someone reads one of your books for the first time, what do you hope they gain, feel or experience?
I hope it touches them in some kind of a personal way, and I hope they remember the characters long after they’ve finished the book. I get fan mail from men and women of all ages, and the fan mail I love the most comes from people who tell me they love to read the happy endings. Life is hard for everyone, and escaping from reality with a romance that has a happy ending helps people forget how hard it is…for a little while anyway.

Can you share three things you’ve learned about the business of writing since your first publication?

  1. Publishing, in general, is a nice business. People are honest, friendly, and supportive.
  2. You have to have web presence these days, even at the expense of losing a certain amount of privacy.
  3. Never take a bad review too personally, unless you think there’s something you can learn from it (sometimes there is).

Does the title of a book you’re writing come to you as you’re writing it, or does it come before you even begin the first sentence?

A lot of my recent titles are take-offs of pop culture films. But with those that aren’t, especially when it comes to short story stand alones, I usually don’t know the title until I’m finished. I’ll have several titles in mind while I’m writing, but I’m never really sure until I’m finished writing.

The title for “The Pumpkin Ravioli Boy” came to me immediately, though. I’d read an article in Time Magazine by staff writer, John Cloud, about gay relationships that absolutely infuriated me. It was one of those “research says,” and “studies suggest,” articles, with no solid facts. And Mr. Cloud made gay relationships sound just as frivolous and silly as pumpkin ravioli, and I wanted to fix that with a short story for younger gay men, or anyone else out there, who doesn’t know much about gay relationships.

How would you describe your sense of humor? Who and what makes you laugh?
Quirky. I love humor that applies to real life situations. Larry David’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” would be a good example.

What is the most frequently asked Ryan question?
It usually has to do with the erotica I’ve written. And how much of the erotica is based on my own personal experiences. As I said earlier in the interview, almost all the erotic scene’s I’ve written are based on personal experience. And the few that weren’t, were the most difficult to write.

What are you working on now?
I just finished a m/m romance novel for http://www.ravenousromance.com that revolves around one of my all time favourite films, “Dirty Dancing.” I loved that movie in the eighties. I’ve seen it hundreds of times, but I always felt slightly cheated that I couldn’t totally identify with the characters as a gay man.

What was the best piece of advice you’ve received with respect to the art of writing? How did you implement it into your work?
Don’t let your work ever define you as a person. And, if you’re going to genre hop, use a pen name.

When it comes to promotion, what lengths have you gone to in order to increase reader-awareness of your work?
I basically do the same things other authors do. And I’m always looking for a new social network to join.

Writing is obviously not just how you make your living, but your life-style as well. What do you do to keep the creative “spark” alive – both in your work and out of it?
I always try to have fun doing what I do. And when I start getting too obsessed, which happens, I pull back and take a break. I’ve learned how to do this through years of experience. There are times when things get crazy, and you have to know when to take a break and step back from what you’re doing.

What pros and cons surround the e-publishing industry, and how do you envision the future of e-publishing?
I started submitting stories to loveyoudivine.com a few years ago. Coming from a background in traditional publishing, I was curious about e-publishing. Then I spoke with Lori Perkins about ravenous romance, and became very interested in them. Though I have no complaints about traditional publishing, I have found that in e-publishing authors are treated very well and the process is very detailed and thorough. Right now, it would be difficult for me to find any cons about e-publishers, because working with lyd and ravenous have been very positive experiences for me.

I do see e-publishing growing fast. The changes in publishing, in general, I’ve seen in the past five years astound me. Every day there seems to be something new happening that you couldn’t have predicted the day before. And where it’s all going should be interesting.

What kind of books do you like to read?
I read romance, contemporary/mainstream fiction, and biographies. I just finished Anne Tyler’s new book, and I love John Irving. And the best novel I read last year was by Jamie Ford, “Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet.” I’m still in love with that one.

If you weren’t a writer what would you be?
I’ve always wanted to own a restaurant. In my books, I write a lot about food. In “An Officer and His Gentleman,” the main character is a young chef.

I recently read your novel An Officer and His Gentleman. Where did you get the idea for that story?
The initial concept was suggested by Lori Perkins, from http://www.ravenousromance/. When she first approached me about doing a book like this, and about ravenous romance, the ideas for the book started to flow. The book is set in a small town where I grew up in the summers, Lake Hopatcong, NJ. And the storyline is based upon, “what if?” In other words, what if a good looking young gay guy with limited options in life because of his circumstances met up with a lonely good looking male officer and fell in love?

When it comes to the covers of your books, what do you like or dislike about them?
As a former art gallery owner, I look at all e-book covers as works of art. They shout pop culture, and I think they are going to be very collectible fifty years from now. I also think they will help define the times we are living in right now, in the same way a coke advertisement defined the l930’s pop art. I’ve been lucky with my own covers. I love them all. I’m also a huge fan of two cover artists, Dawne Dominique, who has done my covers for the books at loveyoudivine, and Paul Richmond, who hasn’t done any covers for me. But I love Paul’s work so much I framed a Christmas card of his that I received from m/m book reviewer, Elisa Rolle.

Aside from writing, what else do you enjoy doing?
Researching the erotic love scenes for future books (big grin).

Any special projects coming out soon we should watch for?
“The Way We Almost Were,” was just released by ravenousromance.com. And, I have a new stand alone coming out soon from loveyoudivine.com. It’s titled, “A Regular Bud.” It was originally pubbed in a short story collection by a print publisher, and I never liked the way it was edited. So I re-wrote it, changed things to read the way I originally wanted them to read, and it will be released sometime in early March. Note: this is what I love most about e-publishing. It’s given me the freedom to concentrate on the love and romance and story as much as on the erotica. And I think readers prefer this. The erotica should be there to promote the love and romance, or at least support the storyline in a realistic way.

New writers are always trying to glean advice from those with more experience. What suggestions do you have for new writers?
Keep writing. Writing improves the more you do it. And balance dialogue with narrative. I’ve seen so many books recently where there’s either all dialogue or all narrative. As a reader, I like a balance. And, like erotic scenes, dialogue should mainly be used to help move the story forward.

What future projects do you have in the works?
I’ll be submitting a new book sometime next week, but haven’t decided on the title yet. And in the next year, I’m working on releasing at least one stand alone every six weeks.

Can you please tell us where we can find you and your books on the Internet?
The most recent e- releases can be found at the publishers web sites. http://www.loveyoudivine.com/ and http://www.ravenousromance.com/. They can also be found at all e-book retail sites like http://www.fictionwise.com/, http://www.allromanceebooks.com/, http://www.1romanceebooks.com/, and http://www.amazon.com/. But I always tell readers to check out the publisher web sites first to get the best deals on books.

And, An Officer and His Gentleman has been released by Alyson Books, in partnership with Ravenous Romance, as a print book and can be found either at http://www.alysonbooks.com/, http://www.amazon.com/, or in lgbt bookstores

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>An Officer and His Gentleman by Ryan Field

>

An Officer and His Gentleman
by Ryan Field
Ravenous Romance
191 pages
4 Kisses

Blurb:
Chance Martin, who dreams of becoming a chef on the Food Network, works at a grocery store for a quirky old man who gives him free room and board as long as he walks around naked when the store is closed. But Chance is only interested in cooking, until an attractive stranger walks into the market one morning. Brody Johnston, bad boy naval officer on extended leave from his post in Europe, can’t take his eyes off innocent Chance’s round buttocks and smooth legs, and is determined to get to know him better. So when the old man goes to bed, Chance sneaks out to meet Brody and discovers his talents in the bedroom rival his talents in the kitchen. Though they are complete opposites, Chance is ready to submit to all of Brody’s sexual kinks and desires, but it never occurs to him they might actually fall in love with each other. As Chance fights to live his dream as a chef, and Brody wrestles with the opportunities and limitations imposed by the military, will they be able to find happiness in each other’s arms

Review:
An Officer and His Gentleman by Ryan Field is a classic literary romance. The central character is the damsel in distress, though in this case it is a male protagonist. Chance Martin is being held prisoner by an evil tyrant, his boss and landlord Dan Pratta. Dan, of course, is the villain. The knight in shining armor is Brody Johnston, a naval officer on leave. The central character has a sympathetic comrade named Sarah who injects comedy and dramatic flare into the story.

In order to truly appreciate this story, the reader has to be willing to suspend realism and accept the tale for what it is. All of the elements of the romance are crystal clear, and all are significantly exaggerated. The villainous ogre who controls young Chance’s life is evil and disgusting. He’s described as being physically repulsive, possessing virtually no redeeming qualities whatsoever. He’s mean, selfish, demanding, and unsympathetic. He basically uses the boy as his personal slave and objectifies him sexually.

Chance Martin is sweet and caring and kind-hearted. Everybody loves him, and he works his tail off to please not only his boss but also his customers. Chance has secret dreams of becoming a world-famous chef. Cooking is his passion. Sexually speaking, Chance is of course a bottom boy.

Brody Johnston is just too-good-to-be-true. He’s a buff, masculine naval officer home on extended leave. Brody is instantly smitten by the demure and sexy Chance, who services him at the market. Brody is a bit of a bad boy with a rather troubled past. He is the opposite of Chance in almost every measurable way. Sexually Brody is of course 100% Top, and he is of course extremely well endowed.

I probably do not need to include any spoilers, because from what I’ve stated thus far, you already know how the story will end. As with all fairy tales, the central characters ultimately live happily ever after.

When it comes to modern literature there is a perception which is prevalent that in order for a story to be good it must be original. This, in my opinion, is a load of crap. Stories do not need to have original themes nor do they need to be unpredictable in order to be entertaining, exciting, erotic, or emotionally-gripping. In fact, I would argue the case that most storylines are not original at all, and most are extremely predictable. There are others who insist that a story must be presented realistically. The thing I find so ironic about this argument is that often those who make it are the same people who devour vampire stories, science fiction, and fantasy.

I accept the exaggerations within this story as being essential elements, for without them, the story would be utterly flat. I accept the nine-plus inch endowment of our erotic hero because who wouldn’t want a man like that to come sweep them off their feet? I accept that the villain is smelly and old and unworthy of love and affection, because it makes it so damned easy for me to hate him. In my view, none of these elements are accidental. There is no failure on the part of this author. I see this story as an erotic fairy tale, and it was executed in a near-flawless manner.

The only criticism I have is that, in my opinion, the story was strong enough of its own right that it did not need to be laced with so much sex. Certainly the sex was hot, but there were some scenes which simply were not necessary. I didn’t feel it needed three or four oral sex scenes which essentially described the exact same thing in precisely the same way.

There are some things which I do want to say about the erotica, though. First of all, I loved it. This author is one of the few in this genre who writes gay sex which may actually appeal to gay males (no offense to the female readers, please). He describes smells and tastes and includes dirty sex talk, all of which really turn me on. I like that the Top is always the Top, and the bottom is always the bottom. This is real. And it’s real hot! He also includes some really unusual kink. I was taken aback by it at first due to the fact it involved the feminization of one of its participants, but it was so tastefully presented that it actually was rather titillating.

I would caution readers that the verbal aspect of the love scenes may at times be offensive to some people. While I personally find it extremely hot when a Top calls his bottom boy a “little bitch”, some may consider it degrading. There is also a scene in which the sub is used by a group of guys which kind of came from out of nowhere. I sort of wish the author had left that scene out completely.

Overall, I consider An Officer and His Gentleman to be an exceptionally-well written erotic fairy tale, and I highly recommend it. I love Ryan Field’s writing, and I certainly look forward to all of his future publications.

Review by Jeff

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