Posts Tagged ‘Rick R Reed’

Thrills, Chills, Mystery, Suspense…and Romance; OH MY! Sitting Down With Rick R. Reed

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

Four years ago if you had asked me would I envision myself interviewing writers of GLBT fiction to publish weekly, I would have laughed out loud. However, that is exactly what I have been doing now since the advent of the online social group I created and moderate: Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction. This week, I get the chance to interview a writer I greatly admire as a gushy fan of his writing, and who I finally got to meet personally when attending GRL 2013 in Atlanta this year; Rick R. Reed – Interview by Jon Michaelsen;

 

RickRReed1 Where do you live?

Seattle, WA. More specifically, we live in the lower Queen Anne neighborhood, just above Lake Union (and, for the movie buffs, directly above the Sleepless in Seattle houseboat).

Autumn rainbow1

Writers rarely like to toot their own horns; seriously! What would you say is your greatest accomplishment?

Oh, I toot my own horn all the time and get a lot of enjoyment out of it. Every man should toot his own horn at least once daily, don’t you think?

But seriously, folks… My greatest accomplishment? The promoting, horn-tooter in me would like to point to this or that book and count the reasons why it’s so special. But actually, my greatest accomplishment is raising a wonderful son and seeing him happily grown up and married to an amazing man. Right along with that is my own marriage to my husband. Even as recently as just a few years ago, I might not have believed I could ever write those words I just did. I guess the word family would be my answer when asked what my greatest accomplishment is.

Without getting too personal, can you share a little about your home life?

RickRReedandpartner

Well, I just did. At our house, we are all Cancers, even our dog, Lily (an adorable Boston terrier) so we are all very much into home life. I just was talking on the phone to my son the other day and I told him that I thought a great measure of success is when you realize there’s nowhere else you’d rather be than home. I feel that way. I love nothing more than hanging out with my husband, Bruce, cooking a terrific meal (I love to cook) and maybe just staying in and watching a movie. When we do go out, it’s usually to explore Seattle’s restaurant scene, to see a play or a movie, or to enjoy the abundant nature that surrounds us here in the Pacific Northwest. I also spend time at the gym and running outdoors when the weather is nice.

What inspires and challenges you most in writing?

Creating characters that I care deeply about. If I care deeply about them, chances are my readers will as well. Getting to the emotional truth of people in fiction is paramount in my goals as a writer.

You’ve probably answered this question a hundred times, but please indulge as our readers (and fellow writers) would like to know: Do you fly by the seat of your pants when writing or plot out your storylines?

As I said above, for me writing a good story is all about finding my characters, making them real, and understanding their truth. What that means, to answer your question, is that I am more a seat-of-the-pants kind of writer. I like to take a journey when I write a book and I like to be surprised at what my characters say or do. Their truth informs me and the story, which means things can go off on a completely different tangent from what I intended. Of course, I have a general idea of where I’m going and what I want to say, but I am totally a pantser.

IMEarly in your publishing career, you quickly earned a name (and some awards along the way!) for gay horror, suspense and thriller titles, such as “IM”, “The Blue Moon Café”, “A Demon Inside” and “Dead End Street” (and many others in mainstream fiction) – to name a few. More recently you’ve moved in the direction of gay romance. Can you share with us what influenced you to shift genres?

Small DEMON INSIDEThis is the question I really get asked a lot these days! I don’t think I’ll ever completely abandon suspense/horror, but I do think that if and when I write it again, it will be couched within a love story. I think I made the switch to romance because I found writing about the most important human connection we can have incredibly satisfying and universal. Personally, I think because I have found the love of my life (eleven years together, legally married for going on one year) and am no longer seeking that out, it’s easier to write about love than it was when I was so preoccupied with finding it for myself, if that makes any sense. I am enjoying the light over the dark right now.

Can we expect the return of gay mystery/thriller/suspense fiction novels from you?     

As I said above, I don’t think I’ve left it behind, it’s just that it will be part of a love story. In fact, if you look at almost any of my work, even the stuff that’s considered thriller/horror/suspense, the love story is still at the heart of it. But yeah, I have a short coming out November 17 from Amber Allure [www.amberquill.com] called “The Ghost in Number 9” that has the ghost of a closeted married man coming back to haunt a trysting couple in a no-tell motel. And planning is in the works with my friend and very talented writer, BG Thomas, to write a book together. Who knows? There may be a supernatural or thriller element to that.

Two of my all-time favorite gay thriller/suspense novels you wrote are “Tricks” and the sequel, “Rent”. Will fans of Wren and Rufus get another story featuring them? What inspired you to write their love story amid the backdrop of go-go boys, sex and murder?

I haven’t really considered a sequel, but I never say never. If anything, I would be more likely to write something with new characters but set in the “Tricks” universe—the Chicago stripper bar that is central to both books. I think a gay bar has so many stories to tell because of all the different personalities that walk through the doors. Each person has a unique tale. Hmmm…this is getting the ideas flowing….

Have had you ever had to deal with homophobia after your gay novels are released, and if so, what form has it taken?

I have, sadly, had to deal with homophobia, but rarely in the context of my books. Most readers are well aware that my books are liberally peopled with gay characters and that’s what they want to read, so I really haven’t had that experience. What does make me sad is that I know there are people out there—straight friends and family—who are thrilled with my work and interested in it, but don’t read it because it’s “gay.” Little do they realize that gay themes are also human themes and they just might get an enjoyable read out of it if they’d concentrate more on the human part instead of being put off by the gay part. After all, if I was put off by “straight” fiction, I would have so much less to read!

On behalf of the Facebook Gay Mystery-Thriller-Suspense Fiction Group, thank you for giving us a little of your time today, answering questions fans of the genre really want to know.

Thank you for having me, Jon. Wait. That sounds dirty, doesn’t it? (Jon: not in the least!)

Last question; can you share with us a little about your current release and/or WIP?

Oh yes! Legally Wed comes out in January and I’m so excited. It’s kind of my nod to same-sex marriage being legalized in my home state of Washington last year (my husband and I were married on the very first day it became legal and look forward to our first wedding anniversary on December 9). Anyway, here is the blurb for Legally Wed (and the gorgeous cover is by cover artist extraordinaire, Anne Cain).

LW Small Final 2 Guys BLURB
Love comes along when you least expect it. That’s what Duncan Taylor’s sister, Scout, tells him. Scout has everything Duncan wants—a happy life with a wonderful husband. Now that Seattle has made gay marriage legal, Duncan knows he can have the same thing. But when he proposes to his boyfriend Tucker, he doesn’t get the answer he hoped for. Tucker’s refusal is another misstep in a long line of failed romances. Despairing, Duncan thinks of all the loving unions in his life—and how every one of them is straight. Maybe he could be happy, if not sexually compatible, with a woman. When zany, gay-man-loving Marilyn Samples waltzes into his life, he thinks he may have found his answer.

Determined to settle, Duncan forgets his sister’s wisdom about love and begins planning a wedding with Marilyn. But life throws Duncan a curveball. When he meets wedding planner Peter Dalrymple, unexpected sparks ignite. Neither man knows how long he can resist his powerful attraction to the other. For sure, there’s a wedding in the future. But whose?

And while I’m at it, I might as well give you the blurb and cover for “The Ghost in Number 9” as well.GhostNumber9

BLURB

For Tony and Carter, room number 9 in the Galaxy Gold motel on Seattle’s seedy Aurora Avenue is a refuge. There, the two young lovers have found a place to hide away from a world that would condemn them for their love. Within the darkened, summer-hot confines of room number 9, Carter and Tony can explore their love and lust for one another, free of the burdens of the outside world.

But room number 9 holds a terrible and tragic secret–one that dates back to the Galaxy Gold’s opening back in 1962, when Seattle was hosting its World’s Fair. There’s a ghost in room number 9 and he has a message for Tony and Carter, a message about the consequences of shame and hiding love behind a closed motel room door.

Will Tony and Carter listen to the ghost’s message and have the courage to bring their love out into the open? Or will this long-ago story, one eerily similar to Tony and Carter’s, be ignored?

The answer awaits in room number 9.

RRR authorRick R. Reed Biography and Contact

Rick R. Reed is all about exploring the romantic entanglements of gay men in contemporary, realistic settings. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, mystery and the paranormal, his focus ultimately returns to the power of love. He is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a three-time EPIC eBook Award winner (for Caregiver, Orientation and The Blue Moon Cafe). Lambda Literary Review has called him, “a writer that doesn’t disappoint.” Rick lives in Seattle with his husband and a very spoiled Boston terrier. He is forever “at work on another novel.”

Visit Rick’s website at www.rickrreed.com or follow his blog at http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/. You can also like Rick on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rickrreedbooks  or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/rickrreed. Rick always enjoys hearing from readers and answers all e-mails personally. Send him a message at jimmyfels@gmail.com. To find any of Rick’s books mentioned above, visit www.amazon.com and search for Rick R. Reed or visit his author page at http://www.amazon.com/Rick-R.-Reed/e/B000AP5H2G/

GayRomLit 2013 in Atlanta – Thrills, Spills, Mystery, Mayhem & Things That Go Bump in the Night

Sunday, October 20th, 2013

As most of you know, I attended a few events at GayRomLit 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia this week. Since I live in the city commuting back and forth Friday and Saturday was easy. I had family commitments in the evenings, so wasn’t able to attend the nighttime gatherings. This will be the first posting of two planned about my experiences at GRL 2013.

The first author panel discussion I attended was Storyteller Spotlight – Thrills, Spills, Mystery & Mayhem, hosted by Geoffrey Knight, EM Lynley and JP Bowie where the authors discussed writing in the mystery, thriller and suspense genres with romantic elements. After all, GRL is focused on gay romance.  JPBowie_GeoffreyKnight

Attendees also got the opportunity to ask questions of the panel, which proved to be very focused on specific series penned by the authors and questions about future releases. I found it personally interesting when JP Bowie described while writing the books in his Portrait series of mystery and mayhem with protagonists Peter Brandon and Jeff Stevens, how secondary characters introduced later in the series grew larger than life and demanded their own series, thus Nick Fallon Investigations was created and now spans four wonderful novels.

One aspect attending GRL as a participant I enjoyed the most was being introduced to authors of the genre I enjoy reading the most; gay mystery, suspense/thriller novels. Though clearly the event’s main focus is gay romance, lots of sub-genres were featured. Already familiar with the works of Geoffrey Knight and JP Bowie, I was so excited to get an introduction into the romantic mystery/suspense novels written by EM Lynley. She shared her thoughts of writing the Precious Gems Series, which she describes as “Indiana Jones meets Romancing the Stone, only gayer!” The first novel is Rarer Than Rubies, the second IFox_Final_lr-210x330talian Ice and the forthcoming third book, Jaded. I plan to ask EM Lynley to participate in my weekly author interviews. One question I asked of the panel is how they feel about cliffhangers. All but one steered clear of their enjoyment of them. No surprise, author Geoffrey Knight loves to use them, as exampled in the wonderful mystery, suspense/thriller novel, “To Catch A Fox”, which he co-wrote with Ethan Day.

Another author panel discussion I attended Saturday morning was titled Storytellers Spotlight – Things That Go Bump in the Night, hosted by authors Ally Blue, Rick R. Reed and Marquerite Labbe, aptly asking “What makes your heart race and your pulse pound?” Is it Romance or horror…or both? It was interesting listening to the writers share their ideas of the genre, how they go about plotting out their novels (Rick R. Reed is a total pantster!) and how they feel about mixing gay romance in stories involving ghosts, werewolves, malevolent demons, ancient curses…that creepy house at the end of the lane.

thebluemooncafeAllyBlue

All read from their books, each as thrilling and terrifying as the next. Reed read from his “The Blue Moon Café”, which is chilling tale about a serial killer werewolf let loose on Seattle’s gay men. He read from the novel where the werewolf is first introduced as he waits patiently for the perfect moment to taste blood. I can tell you from first-hand experience having read the novel, you will be chilled to the bone, as was the audience rapt in Reed’s soft, sexy voice as he read from his novel.

Ghosts in the windI can also attest to the scary prose author Labbe read from her novel “Ghosts In The Wind”; the discussion and subsequent reading of the terrifying “Jackal Wraiths that devour souls” almost sent me scurrying for the door, it was that scary!

However, I did manage to ask a question of those sitting on the panel; “Do any of your books scare you?”; all answered “no” and Ally Blue added (and I’m paraphrasing here) that knowing what is about to happen removes the fear, but she gets a thrill out of knowing “what” is about to happen, challenging her even more to build that suspense to a point of terrifying the reader.

In part two of my experiences attending GayRomLit 2013, I’ll share some of my personal thoughts about attending my first gay writers convention, my impressions of what seem to be selling most in the market today and of my experience volunteering behind the Wilde City Press table on Saturday during the Massive Author Book Signing.

And photos, lots of photos (once I figure out to resize them)! Stay Tuned…

 

“IM” by Rick R Reed (Audio Book) A Wonderful, Eerily Suspensful Novel!

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

IM by Rick R. Reed – Narrator Taavi Mark

Reviewed by – Jon Michaelsen

IM_Rick R Reed

I first read IM, by Rick R. Reed back in July 2008. It was actually the first novel I had ever read by Reed, but certainly not the last. I have since become a huge fan of his writing and read several of his novels since, including my two favorites, “Tricks” and the sequel, “Rent”.

In my original review of IM, I wrote how I thoroughly enjoyed the way the author handled the various POV changes throughout the story effortlessly and fluidly, well balanced for this kind of mystery, suspense/thriller novel – which also includes an intriguing love-story between ex-cop, Ed, and his new boyfriend, Peter. It’s precisely because of the different POVs within the novel that I was a little apprehensive at first listening to the audio version narrated by Taavi Mark.

I had enjoyed reading the print version so much that I decided to through caution to the wind and just go for it – and I am so glad I did. Not only did I enjoy listening to the twisty mystery of a serial killer of gay men he plucked from the internet again, I had the luxury of popping in my headphones and sitting back to get lost in this wonderfully suspenseful  thriller.

Let me just say right off the bat, this novel is out-and-out scary, but it’s the narrator’s voice that makes the experience downright creepy. I felt Tavvi Mark had perfectly captured the serial killer’s state of mind, but his voice inflections were spot-on, to the point where listening to the words of Reed’s awesome novel became bone-chilling. The challenge of a good narrator if he (in this case) can project enough voice variation to discern each character and still come across authentic  enough to keep the listener engaged, to not sound dull or boring by simply “reading” a script. Tavvi Mark is able to perform this act and much more, especially in the case of the psychotic killer, who comes across as decidedly eerie.

As I mentioned in my review of the print version a few years back, I greatly enjoyed the romantic sub-plot between Ed and Peter and would love to know more of their story, should Mr. Reed endeavor as he has done with other unforgettable characters readers have grown to love.

https://www.facebook.com/AudioBooksNowHearThis

http://www.audible.com/listener/A8NE0FPK2W9X0/IM/ref=pd_seeReview?asin=B00DDVPY90

The Blue Moon Café is a horror/mystery/thriller Novel sure to pull you in and not let go!!

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Reviewed by Jon MichaelsenBlueMoonCafe

The Blue Moon Cafe

by

Rick R. Reed

Review by Jon Michaelsen

I usually listen to audio books (the unabridged versions); via headphones traveling on hours long plane rides or driving long trips alone. So, when a book I had my eye on was released in audio book format, I decided to take a chance to listen while in my car – which proved to quite often as I found myself finding places to go, errands needing done so I could listen to Rick R. Reed’s suspenseful, romantic thriller, The Blue Moon Café.

Taken from the blurb for both print and audio format, “Someone–or something–is killing Seattle’s gay men.” Something moves in the dark night at full moon hunting and killing gay men in the places they gather. The protagonist is Thad Matthews, a young gay man done with relationships and certainly not ready–or even willing–to take yet another dive for his perfect dream that presents in the form of a sexy, super compassionate, masculine, hairy and handsome Caecilian restaurant owner and chef, Sam Lupino.

Reed begins The Blue Moon Café with his signature terror/horror prose he is well-known for delivering, quickly ensnaring the reader–or listener in my case–with heart-racing, pulsating suspense. Vivid detail and full-moon-lit scenery ratchets up anticipation pushing the listener forward, sans trepidation. Reed tempers the heightened elements of the novel with a strong romance that provides a little distraction from the bloody killings.

Thad Matthews is unemployed and without purpose. He is every guy’s friend, the boy-next-door type you’d introduce to mother, a best friend always there to support you, even if having to take a back seat. Along with his domineering Chihuahua, Edith (don’t let the docile name fool you!), Thad fills his days looking for a new job, taking care of his neurotic friend, and pining about lost love. Edith, however, comes to the rescue in more ways than one, quickly proving dogs are excellent judges of character and man’s best friend.

Thad treats himself to a night out, which he can’t afford of course, in hopes of finding someone to spend the night with. Thad dresses to notice and sets out for The Blue Moon Café, where he meets the manly, macho, Sam Lupino.
Not only the owner and chef of The Blue Moon Café, Sam happens to be a werewolf in a family of werewolves. He becomes seduced by Thad’s naive charm, but once drawn to the young man, trouble beings. After a night of hot and heavy love-making, Sam leaves a goodbye note and disappears from Thad’s life. But, not for long as Thad can’t seem to stay away from the mysterious man who tells lies and holds secrets that prey on his insecurities.

I can’t divulge more of the story without ruining the mystery behind the killers, the betraying Thad and Sam both feel at different times throughout their rocky relationship. What I can share, is listening to the audio book version, the voice of narrator Topher Samuels is soothing, calming when he needs to be and ratcheting up the suspense with inflection that makes the reader “feel” as if we’re there, staring down the beast with yellow eyes, or making love to a most compassionate man with a wounded soul.

The Blue Moon Café is a horror/mystery/thriller and gay romance that will pull you in, scare the crap out of you and have you rooting for the unlikely relationship between human and werewolf. Non-traditional in that it strays from the modern-day romantic epics and ends with a surprise that just might break your heart.

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop with Jon Michaelsen

Wednesday, December 26th, 2012

Last week I was tagged by the prolific author of (among many other genres) gay romance novels, Rick R. Reed Reality

Many, many writers are participating. I have tagged, Ryan Field, Kase J Reed Blog – Under Dragon’s Wing and David Sullivan (here next week via my blog Jon Michaelsen).  Just clink on their hyperlink and see what they are currently writing next Wednesday, January 2, 2013!

We all answer the same questions:

What is the working title of your book?

Prince of the Sea

Where did the idea come from for the book?

When in college years ago, I would travel to the closest beach with my friends near Savannah, Georgia, a little known island called Tybee Island, Georgia. It has one of the oldest, if not the oldest lighthouses in the U.S. Unspoiled by commercialism, I fell in love with the quaint little beachside town, the dark sandy beach, the lighthouse, the pier – not to mention the seafood. I have always wanted to write a story central to Tybee Island and for years, I played with various ideas. Considering the rich history of the island – and with a little artistic license.

What genre does your book fall under?

I created a speculative gay love story set in among the dunes of the island paradise with an expansion of old island lore of sea-folk.

Protogonist; Jonathan Lemke would be best played by gay actor, Steve Callahan.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Old Friend: Lucius; the sensual, alluring; childhood friend of Jonathan, played by Gilles Marini.

Conniving partner; Paul,would be played by gay actor, Cheyenne Jackson.

 

The recluse; Frances “Fannie” Madrigal would be played by the iconic, Maggie Smith

The villain, Billy Wayne Koots, would be cast as Billy Bob Thornton.

 

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Can a broken heart find love in the depths of the ocean?

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I do not have an agency; but I do have a publisher in mind.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Combined, about five-six months. I began working on the story a couple years ago, but got distracted when the novel wasn’t coming together and moved on to writing my current gay sexy thriller, False Evidence: Murder Most Deadly 1. I returned to Prince of the Sea a couple months ago.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

None come to mind. I personally feel each writer has his own voice, so it’s hard to compare.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

Being a native of Georgia, the unspoiled beauty of Tybee Island, Georgia has always called to me to write a story set in the small island town. Its loveliness and tranquility commanded an unconventional gay love story.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

I’ll leave you with this brief excerpt:

That feeling again.

Goosebumps spread across Jonathan’s chest and snaked along his arms.

“The stars shine bright tonight, no?”

Startled by a voice, deep and melodic to his ears, Jonathan turned, but the dunes stood bare. A sudden awareness, perhaps a sense of déjà vu engulfed him. The hair on his arms stood on end as he searched around. Seeing nobody, he shrugged off the feeling as having too much scotch. He turned and headed back toward the cottage.

“Jonathan.”

He spun around like a frightened squirrel. Syllables drifted through his mind forming words like inner thoughts, only the sound not his, but the voice of a long lost childhood friend.

Jonathan saw no one on the beach with him. “Who’s there?”

“It is I, your old friend, Lucius.”

The voice caused his heart to flutter, a flush to his cheeks. “Lucius, is that really you?” Jonathan called out. “Where are you? I can hear your voice, but I don’t see you.”

Please visit the many other writer’s participating in The Next Big Thing Blog Hop posting currently and authors I’ve tagged for positing January 2, 13. And stay turned for more excerpts and the release date of Prince Of The Sea in earlyer 2013!!!

Rick R. Reed Gives 4 out of 5 Stars to False Evidence

Sunday, May 27th, 2012

Rick rated it

False Evidence (Murder Most Deadly 1)

“Interesting foray into the obsessive mind, which is right up my nightmare alley. The only thing about it I didn’t like is that it ends on a cliffhanger with the dreaded “to be continued” as its final words. I will definitely be picking up the sequel, but not a fan of coitus interruptus, as it were. Still…highly recommended.”

Famed Horror writer, Rick R. Reed chats about his new novel!

Sunday, October 5th, 2008

It’s always with some trepidation that I open an e-mail from a cover artist with a subject line that indicates a JPEG of a brand-new cover is within. It’s a suspenseful moment, wrought with tension, and one in which you get to see if your baby is going to have the beautiful face it deserves…of if it’s gonna be ugly as sin, dooming it to a life of shunning and ridicule, much like my own life.

I think my baby has a beautiful face…and boy, am I relieved. Check out the cover design below for my October release, Dead End Street, my first young adult horror novel. Cover artist Trace Edward Zaber did a great job making a cover that’s simple, evocative, and creepy…all at once.

But mothers always think their babies are beautiful. What do you think?

Here’s a little “elevator speech” about Dead End Street, which will be released in October, just in time for Halloween (or the holidays, which is a heavy handed way of saying that it would make a great gift for son, daughter, niece, nephew, grandkid, or your own inner teen).

They were five misfit kids who had banded together in their small Ohio River town. Over the years, they had organized various clubs and now they had formed the Halloween Horror Club. The premise was simple: each week, each teen would spin a horrifying tale and at the end of five weeks, the scariest story won a prize. The twist: the stories had to be told in the infamous and abandoned Tuttle house, where, fifteen years earlier, an entire family had been murdered in their beds. The idea seems like a good one, until the kids begin to realize they may not be alone in the Tuttle house, which backed up against the woods. There seems to be someone—or something—watching them. Is it Paul Tuttle, the teenage son who disappeared fifteen years ago, the night his parents and sister were killed? Or is it someone even more sinister? 

With each story (each a completed short, original horror tale that stands on its own), the tension mounts…and so does the anger of this mysterious inhabitant of the house. He is enraged at having his space violated. And his rage could mean a real dead end for those who dare to invade his home…

Read the first chapter of Dead End Street here:

http://www.rickrreed.com/upcomingbooks.htm

Guest Blog Posts From Your Favorite Authors In October & November!

Friday, September 26th, 2008

Hey, everyone!

I’ve got a surprise coming up in October.  Each week, I’ll be featuring a “guest blogger” from some of the the hottest authors today.  Coming in October & November are authors Rick R Reed, Erastes, A.J. Llewellyn, Faith Bricknell-Brown, Anastasia Rabiyah, S. D. Grady, Cerise Amour; an clectic pool of talented authors for sure.

Be sure to check back regularly as you never know just who might pop in to guest blog for the week!!!