Cover Art: L.C. Chase
Release date: Dec 28, 2018
Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to host Ryan Loveless here today talking about characters, writing, and her new release His Cursed Prince. Welcome, Ryan.
Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words Interview with Ryan Loveless
- Does research play a role into choosing which genre you write? Do you enjoy research or prefer making up your worlds and cultures? And how much of yourself goes into a character?
Yes, the less research needed, the more likely I am to write it. I can turn anything into an hours long research project, so I like to keep things as lowkey as possible or else I get buried and never get anywhere. Case in point: my home is filled with Victorian history books from about 15 years ago when I had a plotbunny in that era. The research I wanted to do drowned me and the book was never done, even though I finished a draft. On the other hand, I did a lot of research into brain trauma and recovery for Ethan, Who Loved Carter and I loved it. However, I had a strong motivation to write that book because I wanted to do a character with Tourette’s, like me. I didn’t have as much motivation to stick with the Victorian story. His Cursed Prince is set in a fantasy world mixed with reality. I had to look up the names of some flowers and that’s about it. It was wonderful.
- Have you ever had to put an ‘in progress’ story aside because of the emotional ties with it? You were hurting with the characters or didn’t know how to proceed?
I have a story I hope to revisit one day. I put it aside because it is basically my story, of what would happen if I went back where I’m from. I stopped when I realized I was writing my own family. It got too hard to process that and I got uncomfortable with it. I struggled with the character’s motivation for returning home because I kept thinking, “Well, I wouldn’t go back for that reason.”
- Do you read romances, as a teenager and as an adult?
I mainly recall my Stephen King phase as a young teen. All my life, I’ll read anything put in front of me. Romance is not my go-to (that would be realistic fiction YA or detective stories), but I do read it. In the last four or five weeks I’ve read Crazy Rich Asians, The Good Neighbor: Fred Rogers’ biography, Nurturing the Wow, about bringing spiritualism from a Jewish perspective into parenting, Fawkes, a magical-realism retelling of the Gunpowder Plot, The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertali (Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda), Dumpling, and a few days ago I started Elizabeth: The Forgotten Years, about the later years of Elizabeth I, and Washington Black by Esi Edugyan, which I’ve had the ARC of forever and decided to read because the buzz is amazing. (Sidenote: I was home sick for 2 weeks. This much reading is rare.) For the record, I recommend all of these books.
- Who do you think is your major influence as a writer? Now and growing up?
Not a person, but a reality: Always having books around, reading as much as I could, and growing up in a rural area where I was isolated a lot. I have siblings, but they were out of the house working on the farm and I was at the house. There were kids my age around, but we all worked and didn’t see each other much, so there was a lot of time to let my imagination go while I was shucking corn or pulling weeds or cleaning. We did some writing contests at school and then I did an english major with a writing emphasis at college. Reading is still a huge influence. I also love talking to my author friends like CJane Elliott and Carolyn Gray who are so passionate about writing. Since I started a job that I love a few years ago, I’m not as intent with writing as I used to be, but it’s still a wonderful feeling to make those words happen. I get a lot of joy out of reading other people’s words too.
- How do you feel about the ebook format and where do you see it going?
Any way you can get words to a person is great. I do wish more people knew that they can probably get ebooks from their library. It will automatically return, so no late fees! And if your library doesn’t have a book, you can request it and they will probably buy it. Ask your librarian or visit your library’s website for more information!
- How do you choose your covers? (curious on my part)
I almost exclusively work with LC Chase now through Dreamspinner, and as far as I can tell, the way it works is she reads my mind.
- Do you have a favorite among your own stories? And why?
I think everyone’s favorite is Ethan, Who Loved Carter (also available in YA adaption!) But my personal favorite is “In Me an Invincible Summer” because it’s exactly what I wanted it to be. It took about 3 years to write, lots of consultations to get the ins and outs of an actor’s life right, and I got to write somewhat unlikeable characters and get myself to fall in love with them.
- What’s next for you as an author?
Dreamspinner will be releasing another novella in May, called A Cordial Agreement. Edits are all done and once again LC Chase read my mind to produce the cover. I’m trying to write more this year too, and my first project is a prequel to Invincible Summer focusing on Hunter and Chris. There will be some surprises there. I’d also like to revisit Paeder from Pop Life and This is Our Love Song at some point. I love writing him.
- If you write contemporary romance, is there such a thing as making a main character too “real”? Do you think you can bring too many faults into a character that eventually it becomes too flawed to become a love interest?
I think if you love a character, you should write it and not worry. Like Paeder has a lot of issues. Derek has issues. Hunter. Oh my God. Most of my characters do. If you’re going to say that someone is too flawed to be a love interest, I think it sends a negative message because we are all flawed. We are all worthy of love. It doesn’t need to be exclusive of those flaws. It can be including them. We have flaws AND we are worth love.
- Have you ever put a story away, thinking it just didn’t work? Then years/months/whatever later inspiration struck and you loved it? Is there a title we would recognize if that happened?
In Me an Invincible Summer, This Is Our Love Song, His Cursed Prince, Last Chance Charlie, A Cordial Agreement, quite a few fanfics. I had the Year of WIPs in 201X and then 201Y was the Year of Finishing WIPs. I’m hoping this year will be the Year of Finishing Anything I Start.
- If you could imagine the best possible place for you to write, where would that be and why?
I know that the best place for me to write is in the dining hall of Grand Central Terminal with my battery full, wi-fi off, and the noise level at a dull roar. It keeps me focused. Some people want a cottage on a lake, I like hustle and bustle. (But I also want a cottage on a lake for non-writing days.)
- With so much going on in the world today, do you write to explain? To get away? To move past? To widen our knowledge? Why do you write?
I read for self-care and I hope that someone will read my stories for the same reason. I am happy to provide a distraction from the real world. If someone reads my books and then feels like they had a little reprieve, I’m glad about that.
Three facts about Tuckington Belle:
1. Given the choice between illegally scaling the royal castle’s walls to steal flowers for a client at his family’s dress shop or going on a date with a girl his brother set him up with (“He’s fertile, and he can sew!”), Tuck will scale the wall like a spider after a fly.
2. If, upon knocking himself unconscious when he falls off the wall, Tuck wakes up bruised, blindfolded, and inside the castle, where—based on the unearthly wails heard nightly—the prince no one has seen in ten years is probably a ghost, Tuck would still choose this over a date with a girl.
3. Tuck thinks it’s time to admit he’s gay.
Three facts about Prince Frederick George Deor (Read and approved with great reluctance by Lord “Protocol is Protocol. Stop Being a Pain About It” Todd):
1. He brought a curse upon himself and now bears the skin of a snake.
2. He can’t take his eyes off the injured thief recovering in the castle.
3. Friendships born from lying and insisting the other person wears a blindfold can blossom into true love—which he needs to break the curse.
About the Author
Ryan Loveless is the author of numerous M/M romance novels and short stories. She is honored to be recognized as a Rainbow Book Award winner (several titles), Epic eBook Award finalist (In Me an Invincible Summer), and a Florida Author and Publisher Association Awards bronze medalist (Ethan). She lives in New York with her family, a sentence that brings her great joy to write.