bad boy billionaire series

Bad Boy Billionaire Series Ryan Field

Bad Boy Billionaire Series Ryan Field

I like to post these things as points of reference in case readers have any questions. And up until now, though I’ve posted about the individual books in the Bad Boy Billionaire series, I’ve never posted about the series in a general sense.

Unlike my Virgin Billionaire series, or the Chase of a Lifetime series, the Bad Boy Billionaire books don’t have the same characters and the series is not a continuing saga. When we (the publisher and I) developed the concept we thought it would be too restrictive to maintain the same characters, and being that the theme of the series revolves around rakes…bad boys…we wanted each book to have a happy ending, which meant that the bad boy had to redeem himself at some point in the book. And he had to redeem himself as a result of falling in love. I’ve always loved the trope where only one person, and one person alone, can turn a bad boy into someone decent. Even though we all know this doesn’t happen in real life, it’s nice to dream about it in books sometimes. If I’d tried to keep the same characters in each book and continued the bad boy theme it would have been difficult for the bad boy to redeem himself. You can only go so far without going overboard. And as it stands, some of these guys really are pretty bad in the beginning of the books.

So that means none of the books follow any order, and each book in the series has different characters, a different storyline, and a very different setting. It doesn’t matter which book was released first, or last. You can start reading the last book and finish with the first if you so desire because they are all individual novels.

Here’s a link to Amazon, and here’s one to the publisher’s web site. There are eight books in the series, and if you want to read them according to how they were released the Amazon link lists them in order.

And, here’s a list of all the books in the Bad Boy Billionaire series. Six have been released, and there are two to go that I submitted weeks ago. The last book in the series is over 118,000 words long in spite of how hard I tried to make it shorter. But this book, Small Town Romance Author, just kept getting away from me and I kept losing track of the word count. 

The Ivy League Rake

The Wall Street Shark

Cowboy in Love

The Actor Learning to Love

The Vegas Shark

Silicon Valley Sex Scandal

Palm Beach Real Estate Mogul

Small Town Romance Author

My next series…I’ve already begun and finished the first book…is going to focus on four western themed cowboy books with different characters, but all from the same town set in Texas Hill Country. It’s a fictional town called, Glendora Hill, not far from Austin. And even though each book will revolve around different main characters many of the original characters from the first book will continue to return with smaller story lines and scenes.

Fall Into Romance Free Give-Away

Fall Into Romance Free Give-Away

Update 3: Thanks to everyone who participated in the contest. I’ve heard it’s been a huge success. And I’ll be posting a winner this week in a separate post, and then contacting them!! And like usual, I also have a few surprises in store for everyone who commented.

Update 2: I’m 99.9% sure all the comments from comment moderation are up. There was a little issue because one comment kept coming up a few times, but I do have back up copies and I think it was fixed. But if in any event your comment did not show up, please check this out and post again.

Update: I’ve been told there were a few additions to the guest list and in order to be certain what they were…or if there are any more additions to the list…check the link I’ve provided at the bottom of the post that will lead you to the Personal Marketing web site. The more additions the more chances to win. And all updates will be at that link for certain.

I wanted to put this post up early even though the event doesn’t begin until tomorrow. But I’m not sure I’ll get a chance to post anything until later tomorrow. Basically, it’s a fall event for romance readers where different authors gather and write short blog posts about all things love and romance. I’ll provide a link below, with detailed directions. The contest will run October 26, 27, and 28.

First, this is the short post I wrote, about a character I wrote for a book in the Bad Boy Billionaire series, The Vegas Shark. For some reason, he’s one of the most memorable characters I’ve ever written and his approach to love and to life in spite of his circumstances is always positive. This is the only post I’ll be doing because I have a lot of other blogging to do, so it’s really very simple.

When I started the Bad Boy Billionaire series the publisher and I brainstormed about themes and titles. And when she suggested the Vegas Shark title, I agreed but wasn’t totally certain how I would do it. Vegas is one of the places in the US with which I’m the least familiar. So that made is difficult for me to feel emotionally connected at first.

However, once I started writing the story and really started to develop the main character, Treston, I found it much easier to deal with the setting. You see, in spite of the fact that he makes his living in a way that some would find highly questionable, he’s also the sweetest, dearest soul I think I have ever written. There is one scene in particular where he is so trusting he winds up getting swindled in a horrible and embarrassing way. A way that would make most of us cringe. After that, he’s finished with love for good.

Or so he thinks. He eventually winds up getting saved by one man and accidentally meeting another who turns out to be the worst bad boy billionaire in Vegas. And in the end he’s forced into making a choice, a choice he didn’t see coming. I won’t give out any spoilers, but there is one scene at the end of the book that still makes me emotional to this day. And I think that’s because it’s really the first time the main charter realizes, and is introduced to, what true love really is all about.

Now, here’s the blog hop button:

And  list of participants.

Personalized Marketing's Fall Into Romance Blog Hop

Prize I’m offering:

I decided to offer two free e-books from the Bad Boy Billionaire series. These are the most recent I have out, and I’m hoping the winner hasn’t read them yet. The winner can choose between any two of them. Here’s an Amazon link where they are listed. If the winner has read them all, we’ll come up with something else. And, this contest (for me) is open to everyone all over the globe, not just US residents. The contest begins at midnight tonight, so please refrain from commenting until then to keep it fair for everyone.

In order to win the two free e-books I’m offering, just comment here on this blog post and I’ll choose the winner at random like I’ve done in the past. I might be posting other things this weekend, but this post will be up forever. And please make sure to leave an e-mail address or let me know how I can contact you within the body of the comment. You can comment anonymously, too, and just leave the e-mail address. The winner will be contacted by me no later than November 7th.

Here’s a link the main page for the blog hop.

Free Weekend Excerpt: Small Town Romance Writer

Free Weekend Excerpt: Small Town Romance Writer

I just submitted the ms for Small Town Romance Writer to the publisher and while it’s all still fresh I thought I’d post another raw, unpublished version here. This book ran over 113,000 words by the time I sent it off, and so far I haven’t heard any screams from the publisher. The average e-book romance novel runs about 60,000 words, and I’m usually contracted to only write 50,000 words. I thought this book needed more depth, and I couldn’t help running over word count this time.

The basic premise of the book is literary gay author vs smutty erotic romance gay author. And even though no one will believe me, this book is not even closely related to my own life as a writer. I did take from some of my experiences, but the reason I made the two main characters so different was because I wanted to show how two different writers go through life with different POVs.

In any event, here’s the excerpt. In this scene, Travis, one main character, meets someone he really likes and doesn’t even realize this until he discovers the guy might be dating someone else. It shows how passive Travis can sometimes be a bit aggressive, and it’s highly out of character for him to react this way.

It was evident Scottie didn’t know Ethan very well. Ethan had once had a bad haircut when they’d lived together in Iowa and Travis had told him the truth then. Ethan took his criticism so seriously that time he wound up wearing a baseball cap for the next month. After that experience Travis had learned it was much safer to lie to Ethan in some cases. Like that time he wore an ugly red shirt to a party and he asked Travis for his opinion. The shirt was so bad it made Travis cringe. But he smiled and told Ethan, “I love it. It’s the best shirt I’ve ever seen and I might even ask if I can borrow it in the future.” This made Ethan smile for the rest of the night, and he had no idea everyone else at the party was talking about the guy in the ugly red shirt.  Oh, Travis had learned the hard way what Ethan didn’t know would never hurt him.

            “I have to think about it for a while,” Travis said. “I can’t keep avoiding him forever.”

            “You’ll figure it out,” Scottie said. Then he hesitated for a second. “I have to ask you something. When you say we’re taking things slowly and this is a casual relationship does that mean we’re both allowed to see other people.”

            Travis smiled at his innocence. The poor kid was worried he would date other men. “Yes,” he said. “We are allowed to see other people. After all, this is a long distance causal relationship. It would be unrealistic for you to assume I’m not going to see other people.”

            “I’m not talking about you,” Scottie said.

            Travis opened his eyes wider. “I don’t understand.” He hadn’t expected this.

            “This guy asked me out this morning,” Scottie said. “And I said I would think about it. I wanted to see if that’s okay with you.”

            Well. It didn’t take himlong to find someone else. Travis had underestimated him in more than one way. But he didn’t want Scottie to think he was upset about this, so he laughed it off and said, “It’s fine with me. We are both free to see anyone, or do anything, we want to do. No strings attached.”

            “Good, that’s a huge relief,” Scottie said. “I’m kind of new at all this, and I didn’t want to go out with someone else without talking to you first.”

            “What’s this guy like?” Travis asked. “I’m just curious in a basic sense. It’s not that I care or anything.” He felt a lump in his throat. He hadn’t even thought about going out with anyone else yet.

            “He’s a nice guy,” Scottie said. “He’s about your age and he owns a few small coffee shops in Providence. He has a weekend place in P’town on the East End. You might even know him.”

            Travis placed his palm to his chest and sat up higher. “Is his name Glen?” Provincetown was a small community, and everyone knew everyone else. He’d met a guy named Glen at a few parties and gallery receptions who owned coffee shops in Providence and had a weekend place on the East End. From what he could recall, this Glen was not around his age. He was closer to forty than thirty. He had a good body, but he dyed his hair that obnoxious jet black some middle age men think makes them look younger. And he had the thinnest lips Travis had ever seen on a man.

            “Yes, his name is Glen,” Scottie said. “Do you know him?”

            Travis forced himself not to groan aloud. “Does he have dyed black hair and big white teeth? And painfully thin lips? And does he have a tendency to blink with his entire face a little too much?”

            Scottie laughed. “I’m not sure if his hair is dyed, but it is black and he does have a tendency to blink every now and then. I get coffee at his shop in the morning on my way to class, and this morning we started talking and he asked me out.”

            “I’ll bet he did,” Travis said. He also knew this Glen had a reputation for going after younger men in their twenties. “But just so you know, he’s not around my age. I’m thirty-two. He’s more like forty-two. Maybe even fifty-two for all I know. He’s an old man.”

            “Well I didn’t ask him his exact age,” Scottie said. “It doesn’t matter to me and I didn’t want to be rude. What’s wrong? You sound upset.”

            “I’m not upset about anything,” Travis said. He felt like kicking the chair. “If you want to go out with that old man, who am I to say anything.” Maybe he was one of those younger guys that liked the old ones.

            “Good,” Scottie said. “I’m glad I asked you about it. I have to go study now. I’ll talk to you over the weekend.”

            Travis didn’t want to wait until the weekend. He wanted to know more about this Glen and what he was up to with Scottie. “I’ll call you tomorrow night around this same time,” he said.

            “Call me on Friday night around this time,” Scottie said. “I told Glen I’d get back to him about dinner tomorrow night. And since you’re okay with it, I’m going to call him as soon as I hang up with you. You’re sure it’s okay.”

            Travis kicked the wall. “Of course it’s okay. I’ll call you on Friday night. Have fun with the old guy tomorrow night.”

            When Travis went to bed that night, he tossed and turned so much he had to get up and take a sleeping pill. He never took pills to go to sleep. He’d always been one of those people who could fall into bed and drift off to sleep without any problems at all. He kept thinking about Scottie going out with that hideous old creature with big teeth and dyed black hair that lived up on the East End, of all places. Travis owned a home on the West End, where a more residential dignified group lived. Like most gay men in his position, he cared about his address. He was surrounded by Boston attorneys and people who spent the winters in Key West. The gay couple across the street from him owned radio stations and the gay guy who owned the house behind him came from an old Boston family that had made their money in shoe laces. Travis wouldn’t have been caught renting in the East End, let alone owning a home. In his opinion, the East End had always been for tourists and those who walked through town all summer licking ice cream cones with flip flops on their feet and short that bunched up in their crotches. 

            By the time he finally did fall asleep, he had dreams of the hideous Glen creature dancing at the A-housewith Scottie. He woke up around seven in the morning at the exact moment this Glen creature was about to make love to Scottie. He had Scottie in his arms; they were both leaning backward in the middle of Commercial Street in front of Spiritus Pizza, and all Travis could see were Glen’s big white bleached teeth moving toward Scottie’s beautiful young lips. Travis sat up in bed, with his heart racing and sweat rolling down his face, and punched the pillow so hard he bruised his knuckles on the headboard.

            He spent the rest of the day trying to work. He tried as hard as he could to write that article about gender power in gay fiction, but he kept thinking about Glen’s big white choppers moving toward Scottie’s lips. He grew so frustrated he ripped a sheet of paper from his typewriter, crunched it in his fist, and stormed out of the house. He walked all the way to Herring Cove with his hands in his pockets and his head down to avoid anyone he knew.

            He tried to rationalize his feelings because he’d been the one who had insisted they keep things casual. He couldn’t blame Scottie for going out with Glen. Besides, he’d said it didn’t bother him. When he realized how alive he felt, and how long it had been since he’d cared this much about another guy, he decided not to call Scottie on Friday night. He called him late on Thursday night instead.

            The phone rang about six times and he almost hung up. It was after midnight and he had a feeling Scottie had decided to go home with the old man who owned the coffee shops. He felt a little silly by then, and he didn’t want Scottie to think he was a lunatic stalker.

            Then Scottie picked up and said, “Hello?”

            “It’s me,” Travis said, in a casual tone. Scottie obviously didn’t have caller ID. He could have just hung up and Scottie would never have known he’d called.

            “Hey,” Scottie said. “What’s wrong?”

            “Nothing’s wrong,” Travis said.

            “Well it’s after midnight,” Scottie said. “People usually call at that hour when something’s wrong. Are you sure you’re okay?”

            Travis clenched his fist and took a quick breath. “I told you I’m fine. I just called to see how your date went.”

            “It didn’t happen,” Scottie said. “There was some kind of crisis at one of Glen’s coffee shops and he had to cancel. He promised me he would make it up, though. He said he’d bring me up to his house in P’town this weekend. He’s picking me up on Saturday. Isn’t that great? We should all plan to get together for tea dance on Sunday at the Boat Slip.”

            So now this creepy white-toothed idiot was taking Scottie to P’town for the weekend. This made Travis want to pick up the phone, hurl it at the window, and throw it into the bay. But he took a deep breath and counted to ten.

            “Are you still there?” Scottie asked.

            “Yes,” I’m still here, Travis said in his calmest voice.
 

            “Are you free on Sunday afternoon?” Scottie asked. “I’ll tell Glen.”

Small Town Romance Writer: The 113,000 Word Version

Small Town Romance Writer: The 113,000 Word Version

This is one of those posts I do every now and then when I’m getting ready to submit a book to the publisher. It helps me see what the book description looks like in print, it helps me check out the first few pages, and readers tell me they like reading these things.

This particular book is the final novel in the eight book series I’ve been working on for the last year for Ravenous Romance. And this time, with this final book, for some reason I ran way over the contracted word count and it wound up being 113,000 words. Before I started editing it, it was almost 150,000 words. It could have stood alone at 150,000 words, but I think it works better when it’s a little tighter. I think part of the reason the book ran this long is because it covers a time period of over twenty years, from l990 – 2012. I don’t usually do that, because I prefer to cover shorter time periods. However, this time the story seemed to take over and I didn’t have much of a choice.

Here’s the book description, in raw form. Below that is an excerpt from a part of the book where Ethan wants Travis to read his new novel…also unedited, in raw form, and set in the year 2000.

In this 113,000 word gay romance, when bad boy male stripper Ethan and quiet academic Travis first meet at the storied Iowa Writers’ Workshop in l990 neither one of them know this unusual relationship will consume the next twenty years of their lives…even as their lives change and they meet new people, and they each take different paths as career writers.

Ten years later, Travis is a well-respected author in the LGBT community who is up for a prestigious literary award and Ethan is still a struggling gay erotic romance author writing short stories for small presses that garner him a less than fifty dollar flat fees. But all this is about to change when Ethan soon becomes famous for a gay romance that Travis thinks is quite possibly the worst book ever written.

As Ethan’s mainstream writing career progresses and he becomes known as the Small Town Billionaire Author, Travis’s career moves forward in more subtle, literary ways. Although there are times when Travis is jealous of Ethan’s fame and fortune, he’s found the young man he thinks is the love of his life and nothing else matters. In fact, his life seems perfect…until tragedy strikes and leaves him with nowhere to turn but to Ethan.

Ten years after that, in 2011, both Ethan and Travis have evolved in many ways as men and authors. They also find themselves in situations they hadn’t predicted, and the tables have turned on them. Their long-lasting, unusual relationship is challenged once again when Ethan is up for the same award Travis won twenty years earlier, and this time it’s either going to make them or break them.    

Excerpt:
Ethan stood up and walked to a briefcase he’d left near the back door. He picked it up, carried it to the island, and set it down next to a large porcelain rooster that had the most ridiculous expression he’d ever seen. He hated cute things; he despised the way this entire house was decorated. As Ethan unzipped the case, Travis walked over to see what he was doing.
            Ethan pulled a thick stack of white papers out of the briefcase and set it on the counter. The stack wasn’t neatly piled and most of the pages were dog-eared. He pushed it toward Travis and said, “I’d like you to read this and tell me what you think.”
            Travis gulped and glanced down at the papers. “What is it?”

            “It’s a novel I wrote,” Ethan said. Although his short stories had been getting published in anthologies and magazine for years, he’d never actually written a full length novel. This was his first attempt and what Travis thought of it meant more to him than anything. “I’d like you to read it and tell me what you think.” He’d never asked Travis to read anything like this before. He’d never asked anyone to read his work before. The first people who read his short manuscripts were usually professional editors. He didn’t believe in feedback from non-professionals.
            Travis glanced at the title and read it aloud: “To Badly Feel the Darkness of Emotion.”
            “It is catchy,” Travis said. “You never mentioned you were writing a full length novel. How long did it take?”
            “About a month,” Ethan said. “It’s about 150,000 words. I would have finished it sooner, but we had a lot of events with Lance’s job. For a while it seemed as if there was a different party every night. Entertaining clients is a huge part of what Lance does. I’m so excited about this. I can’t wait to hear what you have to say.”
            Travis continued to stare at the first page. “I see,” he said.
            “Is that all you’re going to say?” He’d expected at least a little excitement from Travis.
            “I’m not sure whatto say right now,” Travis said. “You hand me a manuscript for a full length 150,000 novel you wrote in a month and the title isn’t even grammatically correct.” He lifted his hands and wiggled his fingers. “You don’t feel badly. You feel bad on an emotional level, not badly. You feel badly with your fingers.”
            “I know that,” Ethan said. “I believe in common usage, and everyone says they feel badly. I write the way real people speak, and it’s the story that matters, not the grammar.” He’d always been a believer in common usage as opposed to proper grammar, and from what he’d been reading there were many who were beginning to speak out about this, even on academic levels. He’d recently read an article in a university review that talked about ending sentences with prepositions. “I want you to read it and tell me what you think about the story. It’s an erotic romance with light BDSM where two guys fall in love. It’s really an emotional love story this time, filled with schmaltz. I got tired of writing about just sex.”
            “I see,” Travis said, as if they were the only two words he knew. He turned the title page over and read aloud from the first page: “Like a chiseled and detailed statue, his elegantly muscle toned body crept up the elderly semi-circular staircase lovingly. It’s treads squeaked laboriously with each step he took, as he made his way slowly and carefully to Adam’s bed. His feet stopped abruptly at the top of the stairs when he saw Adam longingly and lovingly glancing in his direction. He smiled widely and muttered darkly with slight stutter, ‘I’m here. I’m here, my love.’”
            When Travis paused, Ethan leaned forward. “What do you think? Isn’t that a great first line?”

            “Well,” Travis said. “I’m not sure what to say.”
            “You don’t like it,” Ethan said. He knew that look on Travis’s face. He hadn’t seen it since the last time Travis drank too much and heaved his dinner.
            “This is an awkward position, Ethan,” Travis said. “I’m not sure what you want me to say. You show me a novel you claim only took one month to write. One fucking month. It took me years to write my novel. Then I read the first line and I see you begin the book with a simile, you misspell its, you use said bookisms for dialogue tags, and there seems to have been a sale on adverbs the day you wrote it.” Travis pointed to the next line and read it aloud: “’You’re here,’” Adam mumbled alluringly.” He closed his eyes for a moment and sighed.
            “I wanted the first few pages to be filled with emotion,” Ethan said. He wasn’t sure about the other issues Travis had mentioned, but he didn’t want Travis to know that. Travis could be so structured and picky sometimes, not to mention condescending.
            “Mumbled alluringly?” Travis said. He sent him a frown and shook his head. “That’s not good, Ethan. You need to work on it a little more. And maybe hire a good editor.”
            Ethan sat back and sighed. Why did Travis always have to be so condescending? “All I wanted you to do was read it and tell me what you think. But if that’s too much trouble, don’t bother. I’m never going to write literary books like you. I know and I’m okay with that. But I know I can write sexy books with a lot of romance and a killer story.”
            Travis rubbed his jaw and took a quick breath. “I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I’ll take the book with me and read it from cover to cover. I’ll overlook all the grammatical issues and I’ll let you know what I think of the story; just the story. I’ll be completely objective in that respect. But you have to promise you’ll take my criticism as objectively. In other words, you can’t get mad at me.”
            “It’s a deal,” Ethan said. “All I want you to do is read it and tell me what you think.”
            Travis glanced down at the page and saw the byline. “Who the hell is G. X. Cloud?”
            Ethan sat up higher and squared his back. “That’s my pen name for this. Everyone’s using them nowadays, especially in e-publishing. And since this is a first novel, I wanted something different than I’ve used before.”
            E-publishing?” Travis asked, with a sarcastic emphasis on the e.
            Ethan nodded. “Electronic publishing,” he said. “It’s where people read electronic books instead of print books. I’ve been reading a lot about it lately on the Internet. I’ve seen articles that claim everyone will be reading e-books on an e-reading device of some kind by the year 2010. And a lot of writers are using pen names with two initials.”
            Travis rolled his eyes. “Well this is the year 2000, and I haven’t seen any signs of thathappening in publishing, so don’t hold your breath, G.X.”
            When it came to technology, Travis had never been open to the concept of change. Ethan had been spending a lot of time on the Internet and he’d seen the changes already happening in the publishing industry. Of course most of the people associated with traditional publishing like Travis either laughed at, or scorned, anything that resembled the concept of electronic books. But Ethan didn’t agree, and he had a feeling the world would change in the next decade and he wanted to be part of that change.
            “You can take this hard copy manuscript,” Ethan said. “I have an electronic back up on file. I back up all my work now with digital copies.” He was by no means a tech genius, but he wanted to use technical words to impress Travis. He knew Travis wrote his literary books on the same old typewriter he’d used at The Iowa Writer’s Workshop, and he found this amusing and quaint. Travis didn’t even have an e-mail address yet, and most people Ethan knew did. About a year earlier, Ethan had been warned by one of the publishers with whom he worked if he didn’t get a computer and learn how to submit his short erotic stories as Word Documents, he would soon become obsolete and no one would be willing to read his hard copy manuscripts. At first Ethan ignored the advice, but then it actually happened. One of his small publishers wanted to buy a short erotic gay story for an anthology, but he told Ethan it had to be submitted electronically. On that same day, Ethan bought a computer and asked Lance to show him the basics. Lance had already been using computers for architectural design and he knew the basics.
            Travis made a face. “I’ll stick with my old typewriter for now, thank you. But as long as you have a copy, I’ll take the manuscript with me and I’ll read it.”
            Ethan jumped off his stool and hugged him. “Thanks,” he said. “I know I’m never going to be as good as you, but not everyone can write literary novels that win big book awards. Some of us just want to entertain people and have a little fun.” Although he wanted that to sound like a compliment, he also wanted to let Travis know he wasn’t a complete idiot just because he didn’t get his graduate degree in Iowa. The competition between them often equaled the love between them, which made moments like this more intense. They always seemed to be on the verge of a kiss or a slap in the face.
            And Travis always made sure he went insult for insult. He tapped Ethan’s messy manuscript and said, “And I’m sure I’ll have more than a little fun reading this.”
 
  

Free Bad Boy Book on ARe; Ted Haggard After Gay Scandal



Free Bad Boy Book on ARe

I’m late with posting about this because I honestly didn’t know the first book in the Bad Boy Billionaire series, The Ivy League Rake, was being offered for free today on Allromanceebooks.com.

There are eight books in the Bad Boy Billionaire series, and I’m just now finishing up the final book, The Small Town Romance Writer.

I’ve posted about TILR here, with excerpts and a blurb. And here’s the link where you can download it for free in ARe.

As a side note, I tried to get the Chase series in this program weeks ago at ARe and I was very disappointed when they told me there was no more room. I figured next time, and forgot all about it. And what a nice surprise to come home today and find out Ravenous Romance had been working on this all along.

Ted Haggard After Gay Scandal

Ted Haggard had it all, from money to power, as one of the most influential people in the so-called bible belt of America. And then this happened.

But his life changed abruptly when former male escort Mike Jones alleged that Haggard — who had condemned homosexuality as a sin — paid him for sex and methamphetamine. At first, Haggard denied the claims, but when Jones released voicemails of Haggard asking for drugs, he eventually admitted to “sexual immorality” and to buying methamphetamine. He was forced to resign from the church he led for 22 years.

That was seven years ago. Where are the Haggards today?

The article goes on to mention how Haggard has managed to keep his wife and family, and also a small ministry in Colorado. And it’s hard to comment on this because it’s his life and he has every right (equal rights) to choose whatever he wants without being condemned by me or anyone else.

However, gay people only ask the same in return. And I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

Gay Marriage Montgomery County, PA; Free Excerpt Small Town Romance Writer

Gay Marriage Montgomery County, PA

As most people know, same sex marriage in PA is still illegal in spite of the SCOTUS ruling this summer. In protest, D. Bruce Hanes, who is a Montgomery County Clerk, is straight, and has two children, started issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples this summer.

From my earlier post:

Even though same sex marriage is still not legal in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Montgomery County in PA issued marriage licenses to same sex couples today in defiance of the ban on same sex marriage. Tony and I live in Bucks County, PA, which is only a few miles from where the marriage licenses were issued, and it’s s significant move for those who issued the licenses and those who obtained them.

When I wrote that post I was still under the impression I lived in a highly progressive community that stood for equality and cared about being on the right side of history. However, in recent weeks the mayor of New Hope, PA, which has a large LGBT population and is only a few miles from Montgomery County, PA, decided to refuse marriage to same sex couples based on what many legal experts say are weak legal reasons. I posted several times about that.

Even though there are legalities involved here, sometimes it’s important to be on the right side of history in order to make a change. There was a time when people of African descent were not allowed to use the same bathrooms and water fountains as white people. Clearly, Mayor Keller doesn’t believe the issue of gay marriage is important enough to take a stand and challenge.

Today it will be decided whether or not Hanes acted illegally as county clerk by issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples, and many people are watching this closely. Here’s a link to a local article.

On Wednesday, Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court will consider whether Hanes acted illegally when he began doling out licenses to same-sex couples on July 24, one month after the U.S. Supreme Court declared part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. State attorneys have argued that the documents have no “value or legitimacy.” So far, Hanes has granted marriage paperwork to at least 157 gay couples.

If the court sides with Hanes, the ruling could bring same-sex marriage a step closer in Pennsylvania, the only Northeastern state that does not permit gays to marry or enter into civil unions. If the court rules in favor of the state, the marriage licenses Hanes issued could be rendered useless.

I have no idea what to predict, but I will post an update soon. Similar things have been happening in other states, too.

This week has seen a flurry of activity supporting the freedom to marry in New Mexico. Three counties in New Mexico have been ordered by district court judges to end marriage discrimination and begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. County clerks in three additional counties have followed the lead of these rulings by issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in their own counties. These huge steps forward in New Mexico this week bring renewed urgency to why we need the freedom to marry uniformly across the state – and, ultimately, why we need the freedom to marry nationwide.

Free Excerpt Small Town Romance Writer

Along with several other projects I’ve done this summer, I’ve also been working on the final book in the Bad Boy Billionaire series, tentatively titled, “Small Town Romance Writer.” I know a lot of people will be looking for similarities of me in the book, but I never work that way and rarely ever insert anything autobiographical in my books. If and when I do this, I take bits and pieces from my life or my experiences and I embellish them to the point where they are beyond recognition. I think that’s important in writing fiction, because fiction should be larger than life. Otherwise it wouldn’t BE fiction.

The two main characters in this book are writers, but they are totally different writers. One writes erotic gay romance and figures out a way to make billions. The other writes literary gay fiction and he wins awards and gains prestige. The book starts out in 1990 and covers the course of their lives and their careers as authors for the next twenty years, where they experience every emotion there is from, jealousy to closure. I didn’t want the book to run over 80,000 words, but it wound up being 112,000 words…about 400 pages. Here’s an excerpt from the raw unedited version.

1990

           

            When former male stripper Ethan Holmes gained admission to The Iowa Writers’ Workshop he had the best of intentions. And while he often bragged to people it was the oldest and most celebrated writers’ workshop in the country, and he never failed to mention how difficult it was to get accepted, he often wondered in private how he would suffer through the intense academic two year residency requirement without losing his mind.

            By the end of his first year in the program the only two things that kept him in Iowa were his best friend, Travis Lane, and a guy he’d met over the summer, Lance Mannington.

            Ethan had met Travis Lane the day he’d started the program. At the time, Ethan hadn’t planned ahead for housing and he’d spent his first night in Iowa in a dumpy hotel off-campus. He was from a small town on Florida’s Gulf Coast and he’d always been able to find affordable housing as an undergrad student there. No one had mentioned to him that affordable on-campus housing at the University of Iowa was so scarce in September. He thought he’d show up the day he arrived, sign a lease, and everything would fall into place for him the way it usually did. He’d always been charmed that way, and he knew it. Evidently, all these people had planned ahead.

            On the first day of class, the other grad students all looked and sounded so aggressive and competitive Ethan wanted to hide behind a door. It didn’t take him long to realize this wasn’t small town Florida where he could get away with anything by flashing a seductive smile, opening his shirt a little, and moving his hips just the right way. When he overheard the female students discussing feminism and rape culture, he knew casual flirting with them wouldn’t get him anywhere. When he overheard the male students talking about gender politics in fiction he groaned aloud and turned in the other direction.

            Then Ethan spotted a young man standing in the corner leaning against the wall, glancing down at a thick book. He seemed to want to remain separate from the others. There was a green canvas backpack at his feet stuffed with books, and he seemed oblivious to his surroundings in a forced way no one would have noticed if they weren’t paying attention to him. While he looked at the book, his eyes kept darting up at the other students waiting to go into class, which Ethan found interesting. The guy wasn’t even reading the book; it could have been upside down. He was only pretending to read the book.

             This unusual guy stood about six feet tall, had a slim, lanky body, and his short, straight hair reminded Ethan of the wheat fields he’d seen on the bus driving through Iowa. He wore a crisp white button down shirt that day, and flat front khaki slacks that bunched up at the hem around his brown oxfords. When his eyes went up and he noticed Ethan staring at him, he looked down at the book so fast Ethan didn’t even get a chance to send him a smile.

            So Ethan walked over to him, with his hands in his pockets and his head held high. He’d worn his tightest jeans that day, the ones that made his crotch bulge. He hadn’t brought any books or materials to class because he hadn’t unpacked any of his things yet. He leaned back against the wall next to the nervous young man, and said, “Hey, man. I’m Ethan.” He extended his right hand. “It’s nice to meet you.”

            The young man hesitated for a moment, and then he shook Ethan’s hand and said, “I’m Travis Lane.” He spoke with a soft, cautious tone, as if he’d lost his voice.

            But Travis didn’t hesitate to look into Ethan’s eyes, which made Ethan feel more at ease. At least there didn’t seem to be anything fundamentally wrong with him.  “I was wondering if you could loan me a notebook and a pen, buddy,” Ethan said. “I just got here last night and I haven’t had time to unpack my shit yet. You should see the shithole hotel where I’m staying. I still don’t even know where I’m going to live yet.” He laughed and scratched the back of his head. “I guess I should have thought about that a while ago.”

            Travis sent him a look. His head jerked back a little and he asked, “You didn’t secure housing beforehand?”

            Ethan shrugged and smiled. “You know how it is, man. I figured I’d worry about it when I got here. I’m from a small town in Florida and it’s pretty easy to find digs where I come from.”

            Travis bent down and pulled a notebook and a pen from his overflowing backpack. He handed it to Ethan and said, “I waited a year to get my apartment in Hawkeye Court. Around here you really have to plan ahead for these things. Didn’t anyone tell you?”

            Ethan laughed. “I probably didn’t pay attention to them. You know how it is, man.”

            “Well you’re going to have a tough time now,” Travis said.  

            “Clearly,” Ethan said, taking the notebook and pen. “Thanks for letting me borrow these, bro. I appreciate it. I probably shouldn’t even be here in this program, but I figured I’d give it a shot since they admitted me.”

            “I don’t understand,” Travis said. “I worked hard to get accepted. I killed myself.”

            “Where are you from?” Ethan asked. He could see they’d come from two different worlds, but he wanted to make a point.

            “Connecticut,” Travis said. “I went to Yale and I’ve been planning to come here for the past four years. It was my only goal all through undergrad school. My mom and dad are both attorneys and they wanted me to be a lawyer but all I ever wanted to do was write. I had to get into this workshop; otherwise they would have made me go to law school. I wouldn’t have had a choice.”

            Ethan looked at him and smiled. “I’m from a small town on the Gulf coast of Florida. My mom’s a waitress and my dad’s a trucker, and neither one of them graduated from high school. I worked my way through undergrad school as a male stripper in both gay and straight strip clubs all over Florida. And I still don’t know how I got into this workshop. I heard about it one day last year and I figured I would apply and see what happened. I’m still shocked they let me in.”

            “Well you must be good,” Travis said. “They don’t just let anyone into this program.”

            “I guess they liked something I did,” Ethan said. He’d always been able to write and he’d never had to work hard at it.

            Although Travis didn’t seem stunned, he did tilt his head sideways and ask, “Do you want to be a writer?”

            Ethan shrugged. “I want to make a lot of money.”

            Travis laughed and said, “Well you can do that stripping. You don’t need The Iowa Writers’ Workshop. If I had your looks and your body, I might not be standing here right now myself.”

            That was when Ethan knew they were going to be friends. Though Travis looked like a tight-ass at a glance, he was far from it. Ethan looked him up and down and said, “You could strip with that ass. You wouldn’t starve to death. They love it when the smart looking guys pull down their pants. And you’re cute as fuck.” He made the remark about Travis being cute to see if he was gay. All of Ethan’s instincts told him Travis was gay but he wanted to be certain.

            Travis didn’t seem offended about the cute remark. His face turned a pale shade of pink and he said, “Well, thanks for the compliment, I think. But I think I’d better stick to writing. As it is, I still might starve to death doing that. At least that’s what my parents think will happen.” Then he stopped and hesitated for a second. He rubbed his jaw and thought as if he was choosing his words with caution. “I’m curious,” he said. “Are you gay? I am; just so you know.”
            Ethan didn’t mind the bluntness of that question, and he had come to terms with being gay when he was in high school. But he liked to play games, especially with someone who asked such a direct question without knowing anything about him. He shrugged and said, “What if I said I don’t like labels?”
            Travis lifted his eyebrows and said, “Then I would think you are mostly likely gay and you’re not ready to admit it aloud, or you are still lying to yourself. Your type is always like that.”

            “My type?” Ethan laughed at his innocence.

            “The rough-looking, straight dude who can pass whenever he wants to pass as straight,” Travis said. “Your type likes to hold out for a while.”

            “Well you would be wrong,” Ethan said. “As it happens, I’m into dudes and I have no problem admitting it aloud to anyone. If anything, my problem is that I’m into dudes a little too much. I can’t stop thinking about anything but men.” He glanced at a young woman in the hall with long flat, dark hair parted in the middle and he frowned. She wore a gray plaid skirt and black ballerina slippers. She didn’t have ankles, and her legs reminded Ethan of tree trunks. There were so many flawed people in the world he found it exasperating sometimes. “From the way it looks, all I’m going to be doing is thinking about men, because I haven’t seen a single man or woman yet that’s even halfway hot enough to actually fuck.”

            Travis blinked. “Well thanks.”

            Ethan patted him on the back. “Present company excluded,” he said. “I should have said that you’re the only cute guy I’ve seen since I got off the bus in Iowa.”

            “You’re full of shit,” Travis said.

            “Sometimes,” Ethan said. “But you are hot.”

            “What about beauty from within?” Travis asked. “Doesn’t that count for something? I like to think it does.”

            “That’s what yourtype always says,” Ethan said.

            “My type?”

            “The good-hearted elitist who cares about issues and all of humanity,” Ethan said. “You’re only fooling yourselves, and you’re the first ones to jump into the sack with the first hot piece that comes along.”

            Before Travis had a chance to reply, the other students began filing into the classroom and Ethan turned to join them. Travis followed him, and Ethan and Travis sat next to each other that first day.  After class they went out for coffee, where Ethan made sure he pulled Travis’s chair out on purpose. Even though they came from completely different worlds, they balanced each other in a natural way and finding things to talk about never seemed to be an issue. Ethan couldn’t believe his luck once again, so on the way out of the coffee shop he asked if he could see where Travis lived and Travis brought him to the small on-campus apartment he’d rented.

            It wasn’t much of an apartment, but the moment he walked inside Ethan knew it was better than the shabby hotel room where he’d spent the night. There was an open floor plan that had a living, dining, and kitchen area. In the back, there was one medium sized bedroom with a double bed, a closet large enough for two people, and a basic bathroom with a shower and a tub. Although nothing was elaborate, and the gray carpets and old white bathroom tiles had been around since the disco era, Ethan didn’t want to let this opportunity slip away without doing something about it.




New Bad Boy Billionaire Release July 26th; Silicon Valley Sex Scandal

New Bad Boy Billionaire Release July 26th; Silicon Valley Sex Scandal

Right now I’m actually working on the last book in the Bad Boy Billionaire series, “Small Town Romance Writer,” which is running way over word count and will probably wind up being close to 100,000 words this time. I hate giving a word count to any book because most of the time the characters usually drive me as much as I drive them through the storyline. And in this book, which covers a span of about twenty years, I didn’t even realize I’d reached the halfway point at 52,000 words. The basic theme revolves around two best friends who meet at the storied Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where one takes the path of writing steamy gay fiction for money and the other writes literary gay fiction for academic praise. It’s how their lives evolve and connect that makes the plot so involved, and makes this book much longer than others in the series.

In any event, I don’t have a release date for that one yet, but all the other books have been finished and submitted to the publisher, and on July 26th the next book will be released, which I’m told will be Bad Boy Billionaires: The Silicon Valley Sex Scandal.

As a side note, more than a few have e-mailed me about whether or not the books in the Bad Boy Billionaire series have to be read in order. They don’t. Each book is a stand alone, and each book focuses on a different theme and set of circumstances.

And, I will be posting more very soon about the release date of The Women Who Love to Love Gay Romance. Contracts are in, edits have been approved, and it’s off to copy editing for a final read.

Here’s the blurb for The Silicon Valley Sex Scandal.

Shannon Winn is known as the world’s most capricious gay billionaire and the owner of the world’s safest, coolest social media web site, lovemetender.com. When Shannon meets a guy named Terry on his own web site, he considers it fun and games, not looking for a relationship.

And that’s because Shannon already has an open relationship with his personal assistant, Justin. Although they aren’t committed to each other, Shannon’s not looking to meet anyone else for love. This bad boy just wants to fool around with Terry and forget all about him the next day.

It’s unfortunate for Shannon that Terry doesn’t realize this, because after their first and only time together Terry not only falls in love with Shannon, he begins to stalk him and imagine them as a couple. In the course of one week, Terry follows Shannon’s every move, showing up unexpectedly and seducing Shannon with great success.

When bad boy Shannon finally realizes the fatal mistakes he’s made with Terry, and he knows for certain he’s really in love with Justin, it just might be too late for them. Will Terry’s crazed infatuation with Shannon ruin Shannon’s chances of true love with Justin? And will delusional Terry finally snap and kill them all?