BG Thomas on Writing, Second Chances and ‘The Real Thing’ (Guest Post and excerpt)

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The Real Thing by B.G. Thomas
D
reamspinner Press
Cover Artist: L.C. Chase

Available for Purchase at

 

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host B.G. Thomas here today on tour for his new release The Real Thing. 

Welcome, B.G.

✒︎

A Second Chance

There is something that a writer has to learn. And that is when to stop stop stop and hand in a story. So often we want to edit it one…more…time. We wonder if our hero’s brother should be a sister. Maybe our main character should have had a cat instead of a dog, because, dogoneit, all our heroes have dogs! Or maybe we needed to cut a section. Or add one! It can be agonizing.

Oh, and the deadline! When, if you have a chance of getting the story published, you have to turn it in by a certain date. It’s time! Give it up! Hand it in.

And still there is that feeling. That inner voice…. Gosh! If only I had….

Maybe a writer will do a public reading and there will be this inner cringe because, “Oh no! I forgot to resolve that story thread! OMG! Why is it that I haven’t gotten two dozen IMs or emails asking about it? This will be the day! I am reading this out loud and they will hear the mistake and they will come to me and ask about it and….”

And it’s all senseless. There is no point. At some point the child has to be allowed to walk even though they might fall down. But chances are?

Chances are people like the story just the way it is. And maybe they’ll love it too.

But….

Every now and again something happens and an author gets an opportunity to have that rare second chance. When it’s a director, it’s that version of a movie called “The Director’s Cut.” Or a musician will get to do a remix or newer version of a song.

What happened to me is that I got to clean up and add to three different stories!

First the wonderful publisher Amber Quill Press went out of business and a story I sold them back in 2011 became mine again to do with what I will. And then two Dreamspinner Press anthologies, Riding Double and Two Tickets to Paradise went out of print and I had the rights of two more stories revert back to me.

Then I was thrilled when Dreamspinner was interested in the taking the novella Trust Me and reprinting it…as long as I turned it into a novel. I was like—OMG! Because that story was definitely one of those I had wanted to be longer. There was an important twist in the book I wanted in there and I had to leave it at the side of the computer.

And then they wanted my two short stories as well. And once again, knowing that I am a better writer with eight novels and twenty novellas and short pieces under my belt, they asked me to clean them up a bit and expand them. Dreamspinner Press edits and re-edits and re-edits and a writer can’t help but learn and become a better author.

So that is what I got to do. I added something like twenty thousand words to Trust Me and I renamed it Do You Trust Me? Then I expanded the Two Tickets to Paradise story, New Lease, and was very happy with the result. And finally I took the Riding Double story, The Real Thing, and did the same.

I am so happy I got to expand and clean up my story The Real Thing. I think it is charming and it’s personal and I simply love it. But to get a chance to make it better? I was in heaven. Because Bryan and Curtis are very important to me.

Here is the blurb:   

Bryan Mills has fantasized about cowboys all his life. Real cowboys, that is. He even dresses in what his roommate calls “cowboy drag” when he visits his favorite bar, in the hope of attracting the attentions of a genuine cowboy. But all he usually finds are posers and guys his own age.

Then one night, to his surprise, Curtis Hansen buys him a beer, and Bryan has no doubt this is the real thing. Curtis is a rugged, gorgeous man who is every bit a cowboy. He even owns his own ranch. What follows is about the most amazing night of Bryan’s young life. 

But can they move beyond a night of incredible sex when Bryan admits to Curtis that the only horse he’s ever ridden was a birthday party pony? And that he’s nothing but a poser himself? Maybe, just maybe, Curtis can find the real cowboy inside Bryan, and they can ride off into the sunset together!

And there is nothing I love more than arranging the Universe so my characters can ride off into that fabled sunset.

What amazes me is the response to The Real Thing. It has been on the Amazon best seller list for over a week—as a pre-order! And in the first day of sales hit as high as #5 in LGBT short reads, #113 in short reads for Romance—please note that is Romance and not gay romance, and #250 in gay fiction. Wow!  I am in happy tears and am so happy.

I love Bryan and Curtis so very much and it is wonderful to see readers like them too, especially when making comments like, “The Real Thing by B.G. Thomas was an awesome short story. The way the author has of writing the story constantly had me laughing or fanning myself from the hot scenes.” And, “I am a huge BG Thomas fan and I love cowboys. This story didn’t let me down. It was short but also fun as in all B G books and also sweet and sexy.”

I mean, wow! *wipes more happy tears away* Maybe adding to my story was the right thing to do!

Here is a little taste of, The Real Thing:. Curtis has brought Bryan home to his ranch to see how he feels about the idea of living in the country with a bunch of cattle. Because how can he have a forever man if he can’t find one that likes cows?

Brian helped Curtis load the back of a horse trailer with large, heavy metal sections of what Bryan assumed were gates. It turned out they were corral sections. The pieces ranged from ten to twelve feet long and had small pieces of chain attached. After loading the trailer, they climbed back in the truck, and Curtis explained their job on the way.

“I have a bull and a heifer that just won’t come in. I think there’s a dog scaring them or something. We’re going to assemble a small corral, fill a tub with range cubes, and call for them. I think they’ll come.”

The assembly wasn’t easy, and it embarrassed Bryan how quickly he was out of breath. Curtis didn’t seem to even raise a sweat. They arranged the pieces in a large square, placing them end to end and then slipping the small chains through a hole and back around to secure the sections into a fence. When they were done, they stepped back into the truck and Curtis began to tap a pattern on the horn on his steering wheel. “They know this signal,” he explained. “They’ll come.”

But after a while, there were still no cattle.

Just as they were driving off, Bryan stopped him. “Oh, look! Are they that reddish-brown color, like on TV?”

“Yup. You see them?”

“Way off over there,” Bryan said, pointing.

It took Curtis a moment, but then he said, “Yup. That’s the female. She has a white face.”

So they honked and honked, but to no avail.

It was only then that Bryan remembered Curtis’s traditional family Sunday meal.

“I let them know we were skipping today,” Curtis said.

“But….”

No,” Curtis said. “Today is for us. And it’s time for dinner. Our dinner.” With that, he took a bag of range cubes, poured them into a large washbasin, and left it in the corral. “I think they’ll come for them tonight. When I honk tomorrow, they’ll come a-runnin’.”

Then they were off and back to Curtis’s house, where he cooked them two huge steaks, once again from his own cattle, for their dinner.

It was the best steak Bryan had ever tasted.

Finally it was time for Curtis to take Bryan home. Bryan had hoped for one more tumble in Curtis’s bed, but two times in one day wasn’t bad, especially when one of those times was under the sun in a bed of hay. Who all could say they’d done that?

The trip back was nice but sad. He didn’t want to go home. He wanted to stay.

With Curtis.

He kept stealing looks at Curtis as they drove, and his heart threatened to pound right out of his chest. Was this love? God. Was he in love?

The thought made him feel very good. It made him feel wonderful, in fact.

And the idea that this was just a weekend thing scared the shit out of him. He wanted more.

Bryan had never felt like he had the past two days, or the past week. Never anything like it. And maybe Tommy was right. He didn’t have much experience when it came to being with a man when they weren’t fucking. Maybe this feeling wasn’t love. He didn’t really know what love felt like, did he? Maybe it was normal to get so swept off his feet the first time a man wanted to spend actual quality time with him.

God….

If this wasn’t something like love, the real thing might just kill him. But what a way to go.

Suddenly it occurred to Bryan that there was something pretty major he was keeping from Curtis. And before he could even think about what he was doing, what he was saying, what the consequences might be, he blurted it out.

He had to….

And if you want to know what it is, you will just have to read the novella!

So long. Y’all come back, now!

B.G. “Ben” Thomas

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About the Author

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B.G. Thomas lives in Kansas City with his husband of more than a decade and their fabulous dogs Sarah Jane and Oliver. He is blessed to have a lovely daughter as well as many extraordinary friends. He has a great passion for life.

B.G. loves romance, comedies, fantasy, science fiction, and even horror—as far as he is concerned, as long as the stories are character driven and entertaining, it doesn’t matter the genre. He has gone to literature conventions his entire adult life where he’s been lucky enough to meet many of his favorite writers. He has made up stories since he was a child; it is where he finds his joy.

In the nineties, he wrote for gay adult magazines but stopped because the editors wanted all sex without plot. “The sex is never as important as the characters,” he says. “Who cares what they are doing if we don’t care about them?” Excited about the growing male/male romance market, he began writing again. He submitted a novella and was thrilled when it was accepted in four days. Since then the romantic tales have poured out of him. “It’s like I’m somehow making up for a lifetime’s worth of story-telling!”

“Leap, and the net will appear” is his personal philosophy and his message. “It is never too late,” he testifies. “Pursue your dreams. They will come true!”

Website/blog: bthomaswriter.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bgthomaswriter

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