Welcome to BRB! For those who don't know, usually every Wednesday I post an author interview and today I've got a writer who's quite well known in erotic circles. So let's get this party started!
Who is, Rick R. Reed? Tell us about yourself.
I have spent decades trying to figure out the answer to that question myself and am still challenged in finding a definitive answer. For now, my current bio reads: Rick R. Reed is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a two-time EPIC eBook Award winner. His work has caught the attention of Unzipped magazine, “The Stephen King of gay horror,”; Lambda Literary, “A writer that doesn’t disappoint,”; and Dark Scribe magazine, “an established brand - perhaps the most reliable contemporary author for thrillers that cross over between the gay fiction market and speculative fiction.” He lives in Seattle. Visit him on the web at http://www.rickrreed.com or at his blog at http://rickrreedreality.blogspot.com/
When did you know you wanted to become a writer? When did I not know?
I have been fascinated by stories since I was about six years old and have been crafting my own “excellent adventures” since about that same time. Professionally, I had my first novel published by Dell in 1991 (OBSESSED, which will be out very soon in a nifty new ebook version from Untreed Reads). Writing is something that’s constitutional with me; I don’t think I could quit if I wanted to? I sometimes feel that if I did, I would cease to be myself.
Who and/or what prompted you to write your first novel?
A deep psychological analysis would probably be required to answer that question, since OBSESSED, mentioned above, is about a serial killer who believes he’s a vampire and who gets a sexual thrill from his crimes. Between the lines, it’s really a story about obsession and fleeing from the dark stranger hiding deep inside you. The short answer is I was inspired to write OBSESSED when I was driving on Chicago’s Eisenhower Expressway and noticed how the lights and colors on the wet pavement looked and suddenly imagined a man who had just killed someone on his way home to his family, driving along the same roadway. Sometimes, the smallest things can be the jumping off point for a novel.
Where and/or how do you find the greatest inspiration?
All over the frickin’ place, man. It crops up in dreams, on highways, in flashes of stories overheard in the checkout line at the grocery store, from other writers, from my own memories. There’s no shortage of inspiration out there, only a shortage of the time required to get all those stories and characters clamoring for attention down on paper.
What made you chose to write horror, romance, suspense fiction (erotic) literature in particular? And is there any other genre you’d like to write? And if so, why?
I don’t know that I write “erotic literature” per se. I do write things sometimes that are sexual in nature, some much moreso than others, but the sex is always a driver for why people behave as they do and what draws them together and separates them. Which is kinda like real life. I don’t set out to write about sex—it simply works its way in through my characters’ behavior or, often, misbehavior.
Which appears first when contemplating a new project: A character, the plot and/or the title?
Definitely the characters. I have so many voices in my head that if it were public knowledge, I’d be institutionalized.
What’s the hardest part of a novel for you to write: Beginning, middle and/or end? Why?
The middle. The beginning is like starting off with a new lover, it’s fresh and exciting; you’re optimistic and everything is novel, new, and waiting for discovery. The end is putting a close to a journey—there aren’t any more roads to travel, so that part is easy. The middle is where you can get bogged down—how to get from point a to point b. That’s the challenge—and the joy.
Has your own life influenced your novels? And if so, how?
Real life, perceptions, and memories, I think, always have a way of filtering into an author’s fiction and mine is no exception.
Writing sex/romantic scenes can be a challenge for some authors. Do you find it difficult? If yes, how do you compensate? If no, where do you draw your inspiration?
I don’t really find it difficult. Lord knows I have enough experience to draw on. I could tell you stories! Oh wait, I have.
Do you have a method you use to write the sensual parts? Do you prefer the sex to be open and bold? Or left to the imagination?
I think it depends on the story, so there are no rules. If the story is about a master and a slave in their dungeon having a play session, then of course, that’s going to be more graphic than a sweet love story where we can leave the lovers at the bedroom door.
Are your characters based on people you know? Or are they completely fictitious?
I don’t know if anyone’s characters are “completely fictitious.” I’d like to think that many, if not most, of mine are, but I’m not foolish enough to think that people I have come into contact with throughout my life don’t shape the people I “make up.”
Who is your favorite character, which you’ve created? And why?
Pete Thickwhistle, in DIGNITY TAKES A HOLIDAY, because he’s my most misunderstood and least loved character I’ve written to date…and I think he’s a hot mess and a hoot (and that’s exactly how he’d describe himself.)
Can you tell us about your latest release? Give a synopsis.
My latest release is Class Distinctions, at Amber Allure. Here’s the synopsis and buy link: Kyle and Jonathan were perfect for each other, the two halves that, once together, made a whole. And then one snowy night just before Parents’ Weekend on the campus of Hamilton University, Kyle drops a bomb: he’s breaking up with Jonathan.
Class Distinctions follows the couple through the stormy (in more ways than one) night that ensues. Why has Kyle suddenly decided to throw away something so precious and good?
The answers lie in their backgrounds, and will gradually come to light as a winter blizzard rages around the young couple.
Their tortured paths bring them to the covered bridge where their love had come to life on a hot summer day. But will the warmth of that memory and the heat of the love they once shared be enough to outclass the storm, and more importantly, bring them back together?
What’s your newest WIP? And when we can expect a publication date?
I just finished my latest WIP today. It’s a full-length m/m romantic novel based on my experiences as an AIDS buddy in Tampa in the early 1990s. Although it’s fictional, the heart of the book does revolve around my very real-life buddy who passed away shortly after we became friends—in the Florida State Prison. How he got there and so much more is a story I have been wanting to tell for a long, long time.
How many novels do you have, that are currently published?
Please list all the publishers, so the readers can locate you. I have been writing professional for two decades, so this is quite a lengthy answer. Below are my print and digital bibliographies.
Dignity Takes a Holiday Pete Thickwhistle doesn’t live what one might call a charmed life. At age forty-seven, he’s a flamboyant gay man who believes no one knows he’s gay, still living at home with his harpy of a mother. Worse, he’s still a virgin, longing to find just the right man to make his life complete.
Tricks An opposites attract love story about a Chicago Boystown stripper and the nerdy, regular guy he falls for. But I would never write anything sweet and simple--dark forces swirl around the pair, threatening their happily-ever-after.
A Demon Inside Hunter Beaumont believes he will find refuge from a broken love affair and the death of his beloved grandmother in the house she left him. But the house, in the Wisconsin woods, holds more secrets and terror than anything he left behind. It may also hold the promise of new love…
On The Edge Previously available only in electronic format, these eight stories of m/m erotica and romance have now been combined for a paperback edition.
Tales from the Sexual Underground Collection of essays, short stories, and non-fiction on gay male sexuality. Not for the faint of heart.
The Blue Moon Cafe A homophobic werewolf is killing gay men in Seattle. Horror and romance combine in this page-turner.
Mute Witness A harrowing story about a gay couple's turmoil when their eight-year-old son is abducted and their small town turns against them.
M4M A love story in two parts; contains VGL Male Seeks Same and , previously available only in e-books format. This is the paperback collection.
Bashed A horror/romance novel about a horrific gay hate crime and its aftermath.
Dead End Street Young adult horror novel about five misfit kids, an abandoned house, and the secret threat that awaits them there.
Orientation A paranormal love story and thriller that combines reincarnation, sexual orientation, AIDS, and crystal meth addiction.
High Risk A sexually-addicted housewife, a twisted and handsome stranger, and a journey into nightmare.
Deadly Vision A small town single mother is suddenly cursed with psychic ability and begins having disturbing visions into the murders of teenage girls, jeopardizing herself and her young son.
In the Blood My tragic vampire love story takes place in 1950s Greenwich Village and modern-day Chicago.
IM A serial killer is on the loose and preying on gay men via Internet hook-up sites.
A Face Without a Heart A modern-day version of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Penance A madman is preying on the street kids of uptown Chicago.
Obsessed A serial killer who believes he’s a vampire causes a bloody crime rampage in Chicago.
Class Distinctions A rich man, poor man love story about two college students who discover that it takes more than class distinctions to separate two guys who truly love one another.
How I Met My Man A story of suspense and romance combining a killer on the loose with meeting one's first love.
Homecoming A touching tale of a man finding his way back to life and love after his longtime partner is killed in an accident.
Moving Toward the Light A tale of vengeance from beyond the grave.
Speed Demon A story of thwarted love, of a twisted triangle, and just maybe, a tale of crime and revenge from beyond the grave...
Reckless About the consequences of not disclosing your HIV status. Crime or not?
Sluggo Snares a Vampire Be careful about who you're connecting with and inviting inside...
Out on the Net A young man realizes he's gay minutes before his wedding to a woman. A journey toward life, love, and acceptance, told in blog entries.
VGL Male Seeks Same Ethan Schwartz is alone…until he discovers that, online, he can be anyone he wants. What happens when his online persona and his real self collide?
NEG UB2 The continuing story of Ethan and Brian--and what transpires when Ethan makes the shocking discovery that he has tested HIV-positive.
Ambrose and the Waif Two lovers plot a murder and get caught up in a web of deceit, mystery, and intrigue that even they can’t untangle.
Through the Closet Door The difficult journey out of the closet for a young married man.
MANamorphosis A ribald take on Kafka’s Metamorphosis that begins with the line: "I awoke one morning from uneasy dreams to find my penis had transformed itself into a vagina."
Pottery Peter A very erotic memory story about a young college man working in an industrial pottery one summer and the love/lust triangle that develops.
Incubus What happens when grief opens a door to let a dead lover come back?
Superstar Based on the song, a love story about a groupie and the rock star he loves.
Riding the El at Midnight Strangers on a train at midnight: a journey to sexual heaven or simply hell?
Fugue Who is the master and who is the slave?
How I Became Sexually Irresistible A young man wishes to be sexually irresistible to anyone he desires and discovers the old saw is true: be careful what you wish for.
No Place Like Home Sexy, comic, and sick...a twisted love story inspired by The Wizard of Oz.
Where do you see your career in the next five years to ten years?
Like Dame Edna, I expect to achieve the mega-stardom I so richly deserve. If not that, I will settle for continuing to work with the handful of wonderful small presses who continue to support me and my work.
Thanks so much, Rick! I wish you the very best for the future. Today I've posted @ IRM http://rainingmenamen.blogspot.com/ 'Master of Illusion' has been released! I'm very thrilled! Thank you so much to stopping in everyone! Have a great evening!
Happy Yaoi Hunting
Blak Rayne ^_^!!