Ryan Alback has almost everything he’s ever wanted: a successful acting career, a dog who adores him, great family and friends, and a life outside the closet. The only thing missing is a boyfriend—but Ryan’s been burned by Hollywood relationships before, and he’s not eager to try one again.
Jason Santos has almost everything he’s ever wanted: a fulfilling career teaching middle school, a house in a city he loves, and parents who support him in every way. Too bad he can’t seem to forget the ex-boyfriend who rejected his marriage proposal.
When a talk show host launches a dating contest to find Ryan a boyfriend and Jason accidentally wins, neither of them expect anything to come from it. Yet somewhere between a disastrous massage and a mud sinkhole, they both start to wonder if this date could be more than just a public relations stunt. But before they can move into the future, they’ll both have to learn to let go of the past.
1. If you were to describe your e-book/book in only one word, what would it be?
2. What would you say inspired you to write it? ?
The Ellen Show. No, actually. This entire idea came to me one day during some afternoon television.
3. What was the source of inspiration for your protagonist? What about your antagonist? ?
None of the characters in this novel were inspired by any one person. Jason’s a combination of lots of my teacher friends, and Ryan’s a meshing of some of my favorite actors.
4. Have you ever been hit by the infamous “writer’s block”? What did you do to escape it? ?
Daily. I write through it! It’s the only way.
5. Your all time favorite book? ?
Like, of all time? It changes daily. Right now it’s probably Tigers and Devils by Sean Kennedy.
6. What made you pick that one above all others? ?
I think I re-read that book at least once a year, and I’ve just started re-reading it again. It’s a perfect study in creating first-person narrative voice.
7. What’s the longest time you’ve spent working on a project? ?
I worked on one book for eleven years…that’s probably the longest so far.
8. Would you say becoming an author has changed you? In what way? ?
Sure, now I know what Tumblr and Twitter are.
9. Was there ever a time, during your work on the e-book/book, when you felt like giving up? What made you change your mind? ?
This book? Nah. This book was light and happiness for me after writing a book that was full of sadness and angst. This book made me nothing but happy.
10. What does your day-to-day life consist of? What else do you do, aside writing? ?
I’m also a teacher! My days are filled with love and whining from both real people and my characters.
11. How do you deal with bad reviews or acid criticism? What would you advise other authors to that effect? ?
Read Amy Lane’s blog post about the five stages of reading a bad review. Changed my writing life. I try to re-read it every time I have a new book come out.
12. Is this title part of a series? Without giving us spoilers, of course, what can we expect from the next e-books/books in the series? ?
No, this one was a standalone. Although I suppose I could always write another in this universe…I do love Ryan and Jason.
13. What do you have stored for us in the future? What are you working on/planning on next, aside this title/series? ?
Right now I seem to have six different projects going on, so it’s anyone’s guess which one will actually appear in front of the public next. I’ll keep you posted!
Fun facts: :
1. If you could wish for any one thing, and it would immediately come true, what would you wish for? ?
A million dollars. Is that too obvious?
2. If you were stranded on an isolated island, what’s the one book you’d absolutely wish to have with you? ?
Can’t I just bring my Kindle?
3. Name your favorite fruit. ?
4. Coffee or tea? ?
5. Favorite season? ?
6. How about fav time of 24 hours? ?
About an hour after whenever I’ve woken up.
7. Were you a boyscout/girlscout? ?
Girl Scout…love me some Samoas. 😀
8. Favorite food for breakfast? ?
Biscuits and gravy
9. Latest book you’ve bought and read? ?
King of the Screwups, a YA novel by K.L. Going
10. Do you collect things like stamps, or key chains, or shoes? ?
11. Favorite color, you know you want to tell us! ?
12. Drama or comedy? ?
13. Have a fav quote or personal motto? ?
Personal motto: “Don’t be afraid to fuck up, and don’t be afraid to apologize.”
14. Cats or dogs? ?
15. Dinner by candlelight or a night out clubbing? ?
16. What song have you listened to most recently? ?
“True Colors,” as covered by the Glee cast
17. What first came to mind after reading question no. 1 of the Fun Facts section? I mean that thing that you reconsidered after giving it more thought 😛 ?
My answer was always a million dollars. Not sure what that says about me….
1. Your top secret, uber guilty pleasure is… ?
Staying in bed all day reading. But that’s not exactly a secret guilty pleasure. 😀
2. If you could choose to be someone else for just one day, it would be… ?
I like being me.
3. Your oldest memory is… ?
Milking cows on my parent’s farm
4. If everyone would receive a prize for being best at something, you’d be no. 1 at… ?
Mitigating conflict between others.
5. The one thing you’d do anything to avoid/get out of is… ?
6. Your favorite part of a date is… ?
Whenever the food appears
7. If a character from any book could become real and you could spend a day with them, it would be… from the book… ?
I cannot possibly choose
8. You were/are a hardcore fan of… ?
The Gilmore Girls. It’s a borderline sickness.
9. You’d immediately fall for someone who… ?
Doesn’t mind if I read in bed all day. (Oh, and I DID!)
10. The one thing you could/can never get over is… ?
That Trump became president?
11. If you could have any one superpower, it would be… ?
The power to stop time
12. The one thing that always brightens your day is… ?
Food. Also my husband.
13. The most awkward moment in your life happened when… ?
Probably when I realized I think of food before my husband when considering what brightens my day.
14. The awesomest thing in your life is… ?
Actually, it’s pretty excellent in its entirety. 😀
To celebrate the release of Dating Ryan Alback, one lucky winner will receive a $10 Riptide Publishing credit and their choice of ebook from J.E.’s backlist! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on February 25, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!
About the Author & Links:
J.E. Birk has been telling stories since she could talk and writing them since she was introduced to the alphabet. She hails from Colorado, where you can usually find her skiing, training for a 5K she won’t end up running, or watching people run into each other on football fields and in hockey rinks. You can follow her ramblings on Twitter by looking for @jebirkwrites. She’s also been known to ramble on Facebook as J Elisabeth Birk.