Tuesday, June 30, 2009

INCUBUS Has a New--and Newer--Cover

My horror story, Incubus, comes out August 16. It's a tragic love story about a young couple, a murder, and a door to hell being opened by despair. You can read a little bit more about what this short e-book is about below, but I'm blogging today because of the cover process.

Just yesterday, I got the cover for the story from the very talented designer at Amber Allure (the GLBT division of Amber Quill Press), Trace Edward Zaber. I was pretty thrilled with it, although I thought the font used could have been tweaked a little. Below are the two versions, the original and the final.




Which one do you prefer? I'm just curious to see if you agree with me. Leave your comment below and I'll let you know the answer on Thursday, July 2. As an added bonus, I will draw one winner from all the comments who will receive a free copy of the e-book when it releases in August.

Blurb
What if…

A stranger with a knife ripped the love of your life away?

What if…

That love came back to you?

What if…

That love looked the same, but you knew it couldn’t really be him?

Incubus is the haunting—and haunted—tale of Oliver and Ryan, a young couple who have traveled to Montreal from Chicago to get married. It’s late and they’re on their way home from their honeymoon…and their trip on Chicago’s el trains and subways is fraught with strange characters, one a biker-jacket clad man who urges them to “Get close to Lucifer!” But the oddest stranger they encounter is a man in a zippered leather mask who waits for them in an underground parking garage with a knife. Only one of the couple will emerge from this encounter alive.

Oliver’s depression overwhelms him, having seen his hope for a new life with his new husband squashed in an instant. He feels so alone. Or is he? When Ryan begins to appear to him again in the dark, and to make love to him, Oliver is happy…and in denial. He ignores this new Ryan’s cold touch, his strange eyes, and the odd burns Ryan’s touch leaves on his skin.

Has Oliver’s despair and desire for his lost love opened a door to something dark and terrifying? Is the Ryan who returns to him really the Ryan he loves…or a demonic imposter? And when love is brutally ripped away, will Oliver decide it doesn’t matter?

With Incubus, Rick R. Reed merges his talent for horror with a tragic love story and the result is…chilling.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Now Out in Paperback! M4M


My new paperback collection, M4M is now available from Amber Allure (the GLBT imprint of Amber Quill Press). The book combines my best-selling, happily-ever-after romantic comedy stories, VGL Male Seeks Same and NEG UB2, both previously available only as ebooks. M4M combines them in a nifty paperback edition, perfect for summer beach reading. This edition is ideal for those of you who might want to see how a horror writer does romance (apparently, surprisingly well, because the two stories above sold almost better than anything I've written!) but who don't want to go the e-book route.

To get your copy, go here or here.

Synopsis:
Two great stories. One great love. Get between the covers with Ethan and Brian, the men whose hearts connected online and offline in the best-selling VGL Male Seeks Same. Follow them on their continuing journey in NEG UB2, where a shocking health diagnosis derails the couple’s blissful romance and teaches them both a lot about acceptance, forgiveness, and faith...especially when it comes to love.

Previously available only in electronic format, these twin novellas of gay erotic romance have now been combined for a paperback edition!

Reviews of VGL Male Seeks Same

"5 Stars!...Rick R. Reed has a wonderful sense of humour and timing. His characterization of Ethan was superb. This is the first story I have read by Rick R. Reed and if this is at all representative of his writing he'll become an auto buy for me. His timing is superb, his prose is exceptional and his characterizations are to die for. I was totally invested in Ethan and I felt every slight, imagined or real, that he experienced. Parts of this story were so poignant as Ethan looked at his life stretching before him with no one to share it that I could feel his pain...Buy this book."--Jessewave, Reviews By Jessewave

"5 Divas!...A Recommended Read!...Could easily be made into a movie...Deeply erotic, satisfying...The crisp dialogue and brutally honest portrayal of two lonely men, who at heart really are very good looking, is a story for all romance lovers…not just fans of gay romantic fiction. It's a story to be treasured, in all its intimate splendor."--AJ Llewellyn, Dark Diva Reviews

Reviews of NEG UB2

"...One of the best aspects of Reed’s book is his unpredictability. Nothing is sacred and every possible topic can be tackled. Here the author takes the happy ever after ending from his first book and turns it on its head when one of the characters is suddenly HIV positive. From the panic at his initial diagnosis to understanding medication and costs, this emotional story shows the scary and realistic aspects often overlooked when HIV changes someone’s life. Well written with an intensity to the prose, this wonderful story shows the positive and negative elements associated with the first brush of HIV while showing it’s not the death sentence it used to be and happy endings are still possible."--Kassa, Manic Readers

"There's no protection from Reed's quick wit and ability to craft a winning and thoroughly enthralling love story."--Shawn Decker, AIDS activist, speaker, and author of My Pet Virus

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

10 Silly Questions with Crime Thriller Writer P.A. Brown


P.A. Brown and I sat down outside the scene of a double homicide in LA, where she was researching material for her next book. After P.A. washed the blood off her hands and stashed an evidence bag full of hair in a storm drain, we got down to the serious business of answering my ten silly questions.


1. If you could invite any famous person, dead or alive, for dinner, what would you eat?
Michael Connolly, and I'd want a full steak dinner, the finest cut, cooked to perfection with champagne and something sinfully rich for dessert, though chances are I wouldn't have room to eat it. But a night spent talking to him, hell, I probably wouldn't eat anything.


2. Who do you think you are?
Patricia Cornwell. Hey, we share a first name, we both write thrillers. And I'd sure like her books sales figures.


3. What’s your problem?
Not making any money at this damned 'hobby' of mine and being told I'm not really working.


4. If you could have one wish, would you give it to me?
No, I'd use it to give myself ten more wishes. Who do you think I am, your fairy godmother?

5. Where you at?
Having a mid-life crisis. It's been ongoing for the last decade, but I don't want to surrender it, since what's left? Old age? Uggh.


6. If you had to choose only one vice, what would it be?
Sex – is that really a vice? Or drinking. How about drinking while having sex? Now that conjures up some delicious thoughts.


7. What’s your favorite brand of cereal?
Sugar Pops


8. When you wake up in the morning, what celebrity do you most resemble?
Either Phyllis Diller or Marty Feldman, from Young Frankenstein, hump and all.


9. Do you know your ass from a hole in the ground? And if so, how do you tell the difference?
My ass might be big, but it's not big enough to fall into or trip over. And it could never break a horse's leg.


10. Do you have anything you’d like to plug?
L.A. Heat has been revised and reissued by MLR Press and it's hotter and better than ever. Also, MLR Press has just released my latest, Geography of Murder. It's a real departure for me, being a BDSM book. But I'm pretty proud of it and I love my two characters, Detective Alexander Spider and Jason, his lover.

P.A. Brown says this about herself: Southern California, where I lived from 1978 to 1986 was for me the land of dreams and lies, where illusion battled daily with reality, and reality rarely wins. People ask why I write. It's simple really, I write to give the little voices inside of me an outlet. Otherwise they'd drive me crazy.

So it was probably fitting that I spent eight years there. L.A. Heat grew out of those sometimes dark, always fascinating days. Like nearly everyone else who makes the trip, I went to Hollywood to reinvent myself. But I quickly discovered that in Hollywood, writers have about as much cachet as what a dog leaves on your lawn. Did I stop writing? Hell no, I just stopped telling everyone I was a writer, and just kept perfecting my craft.

Eventually I dropped the idea of doing screenplays and went back to my real love: novels. It was years before I took up bragging rights again and once more told anyone crazy enough to express even the least interest that yes, I was a writer and I wrote Science Fiction - then - and murder mysteries - now. For a while, when I wasn't writing I used to paint. There's not much left of those days, the odd scattering of sketches and a painting or two.


I'd also like to plug my new trailer for Geography of Murder. It's almost as hot as the book.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Pottery Peter Get Its First Review


That first review is always the one that takes your breath away...just a little. Will they love it? Hate it? Fortunately, Elisa Rolle, a very insightful and respected gay fiction reviewer from Italy, seems to like what I've done with my little erotic story, Pottery Peter.

Elisa said:

"I have the idea that there are two Rick R. Reed out there; one that tends toward the horror side when he writes long novels, and one that prefers hot and dirty erotica when he writes short stories. Then I know that he is the same person since, long or short, his characters are always deep, with a background and a future, even if their story lasts only 30 pages...."

Read the rest of the review here.

Purchase Pottery Peter (it's just a short, so can easily be read on a computer as well as all popular ebook readers, including Kindle).

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Win A FREE Copy of POTTERY PETER


Hey Kids!

The filthiest, funnest story on the block this week is my foray into hot, sweaty, industrial-sized sex, Pottery Peter. It's so hot that I really am unable to post an excerpt here, for fear of burning up this blog.

Pottery Peter is a story that's somewhat autobiographical, inspired by two of my college summers spent working at Hall China, one of the oldest and best industrial potteries in the US. Just how much inspiration I got from working there, I'll leave to your imagination.

Unlike Pottery Peter, which leaves virtually nothing to the imagination.

To win your free download of the story (PDF format), all you have to do is:

1. Become a follower of this blog (see area at right); I check, so make sure you do this step.
2. Leave a comment below, preferably something saucy.


That's it! And if you can't wait for the contest to end, you can get your own Pottery Peter here for the bargain price of $2.25 (it's just a short story, after all).

And about that filthy excerpt, check it out here.

Here's a little bit about the story, to whet your appetite for Peter:

Josh, between his freshman and sophomore years of college, gets a job at the pottery, a place where sweaty men dressed in sleeveless T-shirts, with biceps glistening and bulging, hoist heavy molds and liquid clay.

For Josh, it’s an eye-opening summer, building his own muscles and falling in love for the very first time. But falling in love is never uncomplicated, especially when two hot men have caught Josh’s eye. Which one of them will claim Josh’s virgin territory? Will it be Dale, the heavy-metal blond God with the tattoos and rough demeanor? Or will Kevin, Josh’s beefy, red-haired Irish boss, steal his heart, along with a few other parts further south?

Come along for a ride during one long, hot summer where the job benefits for an aroused young man are way more than what Human Resources promised!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

10 Silly Questions with Dan Stone

Dan Stone has a new novel out...his first, called The Rest of Our Lives. He's in a good place right now. He's in my tub, where we're sharing a bubble bath and a bottle of Cold Duck and some Ritz crackers. I've let him into my bath only on the condition that he will answer ten silly questions. He was only too happy to comply. Here's what he said:

1. If you could invite any famous person, dead or alive, for dinner, what would you eat?
Hm, I know it's a bit clich├ęd, but maybe Jesus? . . . a little wine . . . a little bread . . . some devil's food cake . . .
2. Who do you think you are?
I forget . . .
3. What’s your problem?
I forget . .
4. If you could have one wish, would you give it to me?
If you give it back . . .
5. Where you at?
All over the map.
6. If you had to choose only one vice, what would it be?
Never having to choose only one vice.
7. What’s your favorite brand of cereal?
Something healthy with lots of sugar on it.
8. When you wake up in the morning, what celebrity do you most resemble?
Brad Pitt in an early scene from Benjamin Button.
9. Do you know your ass from a hole in the ground? And if so, how do you tell the difference?
Only by what's being planted in it.
10. Do you have anything you’d like to plug?
Besides Johnny Depp? My first novel, The Rest Of Our Lives, now available at Lethe Press Books and on Amazon in paperback and Kindle versions!

Dan Stone is an author, poet, life coach, and college instructor whose fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in Focus on the Fabulous: Colorado GLBT Voices, Charmed Lives: Gay Spirit in Storytelling, White Crane Journal, A&U Magazine, Astropoetica, Gents, Badboys, and Barbarians, New Gay Male Poetry, and Rebel Yell: Stories by Contemporary Southern Gay Authors. He is working on his second novel, a collection of poems, and a children's book and can be reached via his website.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

10 Silly Questions with Jolie du Pre


I had the pleasure of hanging out quite a bit with the luscious and leggy Jolie du Pre last March when we both attended EPICon in Las Vegas. And let me tell you, the bon vivant, writer, and editor extraordinaire is equally good at being sexy and silly.

Recently, Jolie and I sat down at Chicago's swank Dew Drop Inn on the north side where I put it to her (my silly questions interview, that is). Over ice-cold cans of Old Style beer, Jolie really opened up (like a flower) and revealed the following.

1. If you could invite any famous person, dead or alive, for dinner, what would you eat?
We'd eat Spaghetti Carbonara, salad, Italian bread, and we'd drink plenty of Chianti.

2. Who do you think you are?
I'm opinionated, self assured, annoyed, happy, attractive, bisexual, and smart.

3. What’s your problem?
I don't have enough time in my 24 hours to get everything done that I need to get done.

4. If you could have one wish, would you give it to me?
My wish is to have enough time in my 24 hours to get everything done that I need to get done. And if I get it, I’m too selfish to give it to you. (Wink)

5. Where you at?
I’m in a very good place, but I’m still trying to find a balance.

6. If you had to choose only one vice, what would it be?
Coffee? Wine? Sex? The answer is coffee.

7. What’s your favorite brand of cereal?
Kirkland Signature Blueberry Pecan Cereal with Natural Flavor

8. When you wake up in the morning, what celebrity do you most resemble?
When I wake up? Before my shower and before my coffee? A bald Whitney Houston on crack. [Rick: This is my favorite answer.]

9. Do you know your ass from a hole in the ground? And if so, how do you tell the difference?
I don’t know my ass from a hole in the ground because I'm an intellectual woman with no common sense.

10. Do you have anything you’d like to plug?
Why yes! Visit me at my Examiner.com page
.
WIN A FREE COPY OF SWING! Adventures in Swinging by Today's Top Erotica Writers Edited by Jolie du Pre. To be eligible to win a free download of this sizzling anthology from Logical Lust, you need only do two things:

1. Follow this blog (see link on the right)
2. Leave a comment below

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

BASHED Has A Shiny New Trailer

I am thrilled with the new movie-style trailer created for Bashed: A Love Story by video artist and author AM Riley and her production company, Raining Fire Productions.

Check out the new trailer below. What I like about it is how it distills the storyline, the tension, the creepiness, the outrage, and the love all in just about a one minute segment. Please leave a comment below and let me know what you think.



Buy Bashed.

Win a FREE autographed copy of Bashed! If you'd like to win your very own personalized and signed first edition copy of Bashed, simply enter the contest. Here's what you need to do:

1. Help me spread the word about the new trailer for Bashed. To do this, all you need to do is send an e-mail to friends and family about the new trailer for Bashed on YouTube. Cut and paste the sample message below and send to your contacts, or create your own message. Just drive as many people as you can to the Bashed trailer on YouTube...and...IMPORTANT...copy me on the message at bashedbook@gmail.com, so I can see how many people you've invited to to view the Bashed trailer.

2. At the end of the week, I will tally up who sent the most messages to view the Bashed trailer on YouTube and that person will win the free, signed copy.

Here's what your e-mail might say (feel free to cut and paste or write your own message; just make sure to include the URL for the Bashed trailer and to copy me at bashedbook@gmail.com on the message you send out, so I can see how many people you sent it to):

Hi!

Check out the cool new trailer for Bashed: A Love Story by Rick R. Reed on YouTube. You can find it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RlvD67TTV4

Bashed is the story of:
Three haters. Two lovers. And a collision course with tragedy.

When Donald and Mark left the Brig that October night, they had no idea their lives and love were about to be shattered by fag bashers, intent on pain, and armed with ridicule, fists, and an aluminum baseball bat.

The cowardly hate crime leaves one half of a couple alone and haunted--literally and figuratively--by the memories and denied promise of new love.

Bashed charts the course of a journey from grief to hope, from death to life, and from hate to redemption. Come along on a trip that encompasses suspense, horror, and--ultimately--romance.


To find out more about Bashed, including an excerpt and reviews, go here: http://www.mlrbooks.com/ShowBook.php?book=BASHED01

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Kage Alan Gets Even Sillier with My 10 Questions


Kage Alan can be a silly man. The author of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to My Sexual Orientation and Andy Stevenson vs. The Lord of the Loins, Kage took time out of his frantic global book tour to sit down with me over scrambled eggs with ketchup and grape Kool-Aid and indulge me with his answers to a few deeply silly questions.

1. If you could invite any famous person, dead or alive, for dinner, what would you eat?
I just made a dish for my partner a few weeks ago that I'm quite proud of. It consisted of linguini with steamed asparagus, jumbo shrimp, steamed crab, lobster and with a garlic cheese sauce. That's what I'd make. Perhaps a homemade blueberry tart with real Michigan blueberries for dessert, too.

2. Who do you think you are?
Someone partially defined by his problems (see next question), partially defined by his successes, partially defined by who I want to be and partially defined by how my partner sees me. Some might use the word "prick", but since their opinions don't matter, who cares what word they'd use? A psychic told me two years ago that I came back to live another lifetime because I was bored. I'm just trying to spice the party up a little now.

3. What’s your problem?
Where do I start? People who drive while talking on cell phones, people whose cell phones go off in movie theatres, people who bring small children to see horror movies while their cell phone goes off in movie theatres, the expression "have a good one", people who insist on talking to me when I'm walking each morning and clearly wearing headphones whilst piecing together scenes I fully intend on writing when I return from exercising, my partner's inability to comprehend what human emotions are and that I have them, and, finally, that bitch behind the counter at the coffee shop who insists on calling my steamed milk (a "steamer") a "reindeer drink" (I don't drink coffee) just to make fun of me.

4. If you could have one wish, would you give it to me?
That depends. If I don't like what you're wishing for, would you give it back?

5. Where you at?
I'm in that state between annoyance and pleasantly stupefied. Gotta love the afternoon. That's where I'm at.

6. If you had to choose only one vice, what would it be?
Masturbation, definitely. [RR comment: Masturbation is a vice? Who knew? I thought it was a healthy release and did wonders for the complexion.] I can live without the foods that are bad for me, the buying Blu-Rays, the hair highlights, manicures, botox around the eyes to get rid of crows feet, jetting to London to shop with Madonna (okay, that only happened once), attending Sci-Fi and horror conventions, and taunting the people who work at Best Buy who think they know more about new releases than I do, but when all is said and done at the end of the day...sometimes even the afternoon, mid-afternoon, pre-evening, evening or even morning when first waking up...you just have to touch yourself.

7. What’s your favorite brand of cereal?
Boo-Berry. Unfortunately, the dye in the cereal tends to go right through my system and out the opposite end. I found this out in a panic one morning while attempting to figure out whether or not I needed to go to the emergency room.

8. When you wake up in the morning, what celebrity do you most resemble?
A friend of mine tells me Jim Kerr, the lead singer of Simple Minds. That aforementioned friend works for one of the car companies, though, and considering how much trouble they're in, I find it difficult to put much faith in his opinion at the moment. Love him. Mean it. Not really.

9. Do you know your ass from a hole in the ground? And if so, how do you tell the difference?
Holes in the ground are empty. I've been told from time to time that I'm full of shit. So you see, someone figured out how to tell the difference for me.

10. Do you have anything you’d like to plug?
My partner's Grandmonster's breathing hole. I'll most likely be doing that myself since she'll be the focus of the next book I write--after I'm done with the one I'm currently working on.

Kage Alan lives in a suburb of Detroit where he resides with his half–Asian and wholly domineering partner. He (not the partner) is the author of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to My Sexual Orientation and Andy Stevenson Vs. the Lord of the Loins. Haven't had enough of Kage? Go visit his website.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

NEG UB2 Gets Positive Review


Manic Readers just gave a glowing review to my latest romance effort, NEG UB2, and I'm thrilled. In part, here's what they had to say:

"One of the best aspects of Reed’s book is his unpredictability. Nothing is sacred and every possible topic can be tackled. Here the author takes the happy ever after ending from his first book (VGL Male Seeks Same) and turns it on its head when one of the characters is suddenly HIV positive. From the panic at his initial diagnosis to understanding medication and costs, this emotional story shows the scary and realistic aspects often overlooked when HIV changes someone’s life. Well written with an intensity to the prose, this wonderful story shows the positive and negative elements associated with the first brush of HIV while showing it’s not the death sentence it used to be and happy endings are still possible."

Read the rest of the review here.

Purchase here.