Ethan Stone talks Hammers and Nails

If you ever sat on the edge of your seat waiting for the two male love interests to forget about the indecisive woman and shack up with each other instead … then read on. Ethan Stone uses this stop on his blog tour to talk about some of the leading men who have inspired him in one way or another. What are some of your favorite fantasy pairings? Comment at the bottom of this post by Thursday, November 29th at 11:59 PST for your chance to win a digital copy of Subject 13 by Ethan Stone.

There’s a saying “When you’re a hammer everything looks like a nail.” In my case I see homosexual subtext in places where it probably isn’t meant to be.

In 2009 when Sherlock Holmes came out, Marie Sexton went to see it with her husband. Afterward she remarked that Holmes was obviously in love with Watson. His response… “When you’re a hammer…”

On a recent episode of Revolution there was a scene where the hero, Miles, and the bad guy, Monroe, had a tense face-off. For a moment I wasn’t sure if they were going to kiss each other, punch each other or hug each other. They ended up going with a hug, but I think it would’ve made it sooooo much better if they’d kissed.

Miles and Monroe are just one set of guys who I make up histories for. In my mind the two men were college friends who began a sexual relationship and continued in the military.

The cop partners, Esposito and Ryan, on Castle are another bro-mance I wish were a romance. Truthfully, I wish Nathan Fillion batted for my team because he is sexy as hell. Not that I’d have a chance with him but at least I could pretend I had a chance. Nathan Fillion is the epitome of hammers since he is Captain Hammer in Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. I’d love to become Captain Hammer’s arch-enemy, The Nail. I’d let him bang me all day.

My hammer and nail issue doesn’t stop with just current movies or television. I watched the 1990 movie Internal Affairs and I made up a history for two of the character. At the very beginning of movie Richard Gere counsels his cop partner William Baldwin. The way Gere touched Baldwin I was sure there had to be some homosexual subtext there. Gere grabbed Baldwin’s neck and pulled him close so their foreheads touched. They were thisclose to kissing and in my mind’s eye I saw how they had gone from partners to friends to lovers.

On a recent episode of American Dad, a teenage boy and his friends find a lost script for a new Fast and Furious movie. They are thrilled to read until they discover it has many, many gay sex scenes. It turned out that every Fast and Furious script is filmed with hardcore gay sex and then edited for America. France, however, gets the unedited version. I’d travel to France for that alone.

Apparently even actors can see the underlying homoeroticism in their characters. According to the website Val Kilmer was asked if his character in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang was his first gay character. He said yes, but only if you didn’t count Top Gun.

FYI: If you google the term homoerotic subtext you will get several links to Top Gun.

On Walking Dead there is a young straight couple who have proven that having zombies around is not a damper on their sex life. With all of society’s rules being reset wouldn’t it be a great time to allow same-sex couples to be together? People are dying left and right, zombies are being slaughtered, there’s no such thing as organized religion or legal marriage so who would deny the right for queer’s to be happy together?

Even as a young man I thought the classic vampire The Lost Boys was dripping with gayness. I know Kiefer Sutherland’s character was hot for Jason Patric’s. It just went bad when Jason stupidly decided he wanted Jami Gertz. How gay is the flick? Let us count the ways.

1-There is one female vamp in the brood and apparently none of the males are interested in her.

2-Kiefer tricks Jason Patric into drinking his fluids.

3-Jason proves his loyalty to Kiefer by piercing a body part.

4-Cory Haim sports some seriously flamboyant attire.

5-Cory opens a closet door to reveal a poster of a sexified Rob Lowe.

Case closed.

FYI: Lost Boys director Joel Schumacher, who is openly gay, is well-known for putting nipples on the bat-suit in Batman and Robin.

I don’t see anything wrong with looking for nails. Gay men and women are under-represented in modern media so it should be expected that we look for it even when it isn’t there.

Website: Ethan Stone
Buy Link: Amber Quill
ISBN-13: 978-1-61124-268-3 (Electronic)
ISBN-13: 978-1-61124-919-4 (Paperback)
Genres: Gay / Contemporary / Mystery / Detective / Suspense / Thriller
Heat Level: 3
Length: Novel (70k words / 208 paperback pages)

Luke Kincaid’s life is exploding all around him. First his lover leaves him to marry a woman, then childhood nightmares return with a vengeance.

Luke’s friendship with Ben Skinner and relationship with Kyle Morgan helps him heal his broken heart, but the nightmares, which are actually repressed memories, threaten to destroy the peace he has found.
Soon, Luke’s investigation into his past puts his life—and the lives of the people he cares about—in danger. But he refuses to give up, not even when he finds out he is connected to a massive government cover-up…


…The memory dreams visited me again. The blue men stayed blurry, though they looked more and more like men. A few of them even seemed to be carrying guns.

I could see my bedroom—the one with the space theme walls. I remembered playing with my toys. The He-Man was my favorite. I took him everywhere I went. But it was always He-Man and his faithful friend—a green-and-orange striped tiger called Battle Cat.

My dreams drifted all over the place. Times before the blue men arrived and after. I could see Fidget Bridget and a few other kids, but I couldn’t see their faces very clearly.

There was one blue man who seemed like a friend. I remembered talking to him often. The dreams were like a silent movie. I could see his lips moving, but couldn’t hear a word. I remembered handing him battle cat. When he handed the toy back to me something had changed. No, everything had changed. It was more than physical changes—the time of day, the clothes I wore. I knew the blue man could no longer be my friend. I no longer saw the smile on his face as friendly; somehow I knew he was deceiving me. He was carrying a gun, and he scared me. He terrified me. And I knew I had to run away.

The silence of the dreamscape gave way to deafening sound. I could suddenly hear everyone and everything. I was crying and screaming, and my blue man friend was yelling at me.

“Lucas! Lucas!” His voice was deep and gravelly. Just like Ben’s. I wondered what Ben was doing in my dream. Then I crossed the bridge from dreams to reality.

Ben was sitting on my bed, trying to waken me.

“Wake up,” he said.

I pushed away his arms. “I’m up.”

“Same dream?” he asked.

I nodded. “Things are getting a little clearer, but not clear enough for me to make sense of anything. Something odd did happen this time.”

“What was it?”

“There has never been sound in my dreams before. However, this time, just toward the end, there was. I could hear the voice of the blue man who had been my friend. The weird part is that his voice sounded just like yours.”

“That’s probably because I was trying to wake you up.” Ben smoothed out a blanket I had kicked off. “My voice carried over into your dream.”

“I guess that makes sense. But in my dream the blue man with your voice called me Lucas. You weren’t calling me Lucas were you?”

He cocked an eyebrow at me. “No. Why would I do that?”

I shrugged. My alarm clock read 5:30.

“I might as well get on the road. I won’t be able to get back to sleep.”

“Sounds good.” Ben stood. “Give me a few minutes and I’ll be ready.”

“Ready for what?”

“I’m going with you,” he said.

“I don’t need a chaperone, Ben.” I followed him into his room.

“I’m not going as a chaperone.” He pulled off his T-shirt and it took all my strength not to stare at his chest. Heck, it took all my strength not to step forward and run my hands down his chest.

“Then why are you going?” I asked.

“Because I’m your friend and I think you need one on this trip.”

“That’s not necessary, Ben.”

He met my gaze. “I know it’s not, but I want to, so just shut up and deal with it.”

“What about your job?”

“I haven’t taken a vacation in years. Hell, I haven’t taken a day off more than once or twice a year for the past three years. I have plenty of annual leave stored up. It’s already been cleared with my supervisor.”

“When did you talk to your boss about taking time off?”

“Last night after you went to bed.”

“You’re a sneaky bastard.”

He smiled at me, but didn’t say a word.

“I can’t talk you out of this, can I?”

He shook his head. I knew arguing was futile, so I turned and walked to the door, where I stopped and faced Ben again. The word “thanks” was on my lips, but suddenly I couldn’t speak. His back was to me and he obviously didn’t know I was still there. He had bent over to remove his underwear and presented me with a glorious view of his backside. It was a rearview to envy…

Below is my official bio with Dreamspinner Press, but I wanted to do something a little more personal. Ethan Stone is not my real name, I use it because I am not out of the closet, though my family and close friends know I am gay. However, due to the community I live in and the job I have, hiding my sexuality is a necessity at this point in my life.

I am a single father with a wonderful and aggravating teenage son. I also have two cats who think it’s their job to cover my house with their hair and a Pomeranian who thinks he’s a Pitbull.
I’ve always loved to write and one point thought journalism was my dream career. I eventually accepted that writing because I had to was nowhere near as much fun doing it because I want to.
Stories starring gay men have always been in my head but thought they would always be relegated to erotica websites. And then I discovered the wonderful world of M/M publishing.

Relationship info: Stay tuned…

Feel free to ask me any questions. Either here or through my email: If its a question I can’t or won’t answer I’ll let you know, but I’m not easily offended.
Thanks for being here and thanks for reading my stories.

Ethan Stone lives in Nevada. But not Reno or Las Vegas. There are other cities there, you know. Where he lives, gambling isn’t on every block, just every other block. He has been obsessed with two things in his life: books and all things gay. After spending years trying to ignore the voices in his head, he finally decided to sit down and listen to them. What he discovered was a perfect union of his two obsessions. Ethan has a day job that pays the bills. He wears a uniform to work and he looks damn sexy in it.

Rick R Reed on The Hustler and Rent

Rick R Reed is a master storyteller. Be it long or short, paranormal or contemporary, he always has a unique voice and compelling vision. His stories encompass the whole of human experiences.

Help us welcome Rick as he finishes up his first ever Blog Tour. Comment below before 11:59 pm today for your chance to win an e-copy a his latest story, RENT.

People ask me: where did you get the inspiration for RENT, your male escort romantic suspense novel? I think subconsciously, it’s from people like the one below.

Now, I have met people who have traded sex for money. Other than what they do for a living, most of them are unremarkable with the same ups and downs most of us face every day, the same fears, joys, and frustrations. But the one person who haunts me the most is one I glimpsed only in a photograph…

The Hustler
By Rick R. Reed

Oh God, it’s trite. It’s such a cliché and all my writing life I’ve lived by one credo: avoid cliches like the plague. But it’s true: one picture is worth a thousand words. Sometimes photographs can inspire a whole springboard of emotions and thought.

Such is the case with a photo my friend Sukie had taken and shared with me recently. The photo was of a young hustler he met in a bar…a photo Sukie promised never to publish. Such a simple photograph, really. A young man sits at a table in a bar, staring directly at the camera. He wears a T-shirt and a bandana on his head, one arm is up, holding a smoldering cigarette. The other arm is near his chest. That’s it. The smoke from the cigarette moves upward, looking more elegant than deadly.

It’s the young man’s face I can’t get out of my mind. He’s just on the man side of boyhood and it shows. His nose is still that of a little boy’s; his skin is unlined. But it’s his eyes that remain in memory, as if someone has branded those eyes on the soft pink tissue of my brain with an iron. Indelible. There is nothing young about those eyes, green, flecked with gold. These are eyes that have seen far too much. One doesn’t need any objective verification to know this. They are old eyes, tired eyes. Even though I don’t know exactly what they’ve seen, I know it can’t have all been good. His gaze is guarded. You can see the hurt in those eyes. Hurt the man/boy has tried to mask with the cigarette and the glowering stare.

I could go all sentimental here. Conjure up a story about a boy who was never loved, a TV-movie tale of familial abuse. Rejecting parents who tossed a boy carelessly from their home, a piece of refuse, garbage. Make it on your own. Sin or swim. Conjure a tale of crystal meth, rock, cocaine, huffing, and heroin…tonics to dull the senses and obscure the hurt. The need to get by…to eat, drink, get high…and how does a boy with no education or talent get those things? A boy could look at this same unlined face, this same button nose, the sinewy body and know that his youth is a commodity with which he can barter.

I can wonder a lot about the man/boy in the photograph. In fact, I can sit all day, imagining his life. Imagining hanging out on Halsted and Clark streets, alone, easy prey for men who feel like chicken tonight. Imagining him in a bar filled with older men, an outsider, cadging cigarettes and drinks, bartering with alternate smiles and glowers, whatever his audience would find appealing. But no matter where he is, he’s always alone…be it on a city street late at night, when Chicago’s chill gets under his clothes like the greedy fingers of tricks, or in a not-so-clean, not-so-well lighted place, where he’s condemned to be alone, regardless of the ebb and flow of people around him.

But I know none of those things. All that exists, really, are the slightly glassy eyes and the cold tale of loss and emptiness they tell. That much is true. And also true is the fact that this same boy would sell his ass in exchange for a ten dollar bill.

On the worst day of his life, Wren Gallagher loses his wallet, his job, and his security. Can a stranger met in a bar deliver on his promises of wealth and meeting Mr. Right?

Sex can be a dangerous business. So can love….

On the worst day of his life, Wren Gallagher wants oblivion when he steps into Tricks for a drink. He’s lost not only his job, but his wallet as well. When a mysterious stranger steps up to pay his tab, he also offers Wren the key to fulfilling his dreams of prosperity and true love. But appearances are not always what they seem….

His savior is the owner of the escort agency, A Louer—and he wants the young and handsome Wren to work for him. So down on his luck, Wren figures—why not? He can use the money. When he joins, though, he hadn’t counted on meeting Rufus, another escort with whom he quickly falls hopelessly in love.

But their love story will have to overcome the obstacles of not only trading love for money, but A Louer’s dark—and deadly—secrets.

It always amazed Wren that Tricks could be so busy, no matter what time of day he stopped in. Today, for example, it was three in the afternoon, a Friday, yes, but still, three in the afternoon. And yet the stripper bar was crowded, mostly with older guys, but some like Wren, too. Younger-wearing snarky ‘what am I doing here?’ expressions on their faces even as they cast furtive glances up at the two buff guys dancing in G-strings to the latest Lady Gaga anthem.

Outside, Chicago in summer was in full swing, but once you entered Tricks, you forgot all about the city and the season. The traffic sounds at the intersection of Belmont and Broadway, the rumble of the el a few blocks west, and the voices of many pedestrians mingling on the street, disappeared. Tricks was a world unto itself, a universe where nearly naked men, alcohol fumes, colored lights, dirty floors, the clinking of ice in glasses, the husky music of men propositioning men, and mirrored walls all conspired together, creating something that was one part sleaze, one part gay, and one part home (at least for many of the men who frequented Tricks).

Tricks was all about escapism. Its dancers allowed you to free yourself from the shackles of your own body issues. Too skinny? Too fat? In-between but nowhere near remarkably ripped? It was okay at Tricks because the dancers were beautiful and one could imagine they got their ripped and muscular physiques effortlessly, from hanging out in bars, consuming copious amounts of alcohol, and tricking athletically with a parade of handsome strangers. The magic might work for you one day, too.

Or at least that was the fantasy they were selling at Tricks.

And…if your self-esteem tank was running a little low, a wink or a smile from one of the dancers was enough to kick it up a notch. The hunky bartender calling you ‘Gorgeous’ or ‘Stud’ didn’t hurt either when he asked what he could get you. This kind of behavior from those who worked at Tricks was hard to swallow, yet easy to cling to, making you believe, if only for a second, you were hot. You were wanted.

It was all part of the make-believe. And sometimes, it was enough.

Wren Gallagher, all of twenty-three years old, today needed some of the escapism Tricks offered. Yes, he required it even at three in the afternoon. As the crowd jostled him, Wren kept his eye on the one open stool at the bar in front of him. It was like some sort of prize, an alcoholic holy grail, a place where he could park his skinny ass and maybe, just maybe, forget for a few hours what a crappy day he’d had.

Just as he elbowed his way through the laughing and chattering crowd of mostly middle-aged men and had managed to get within inches of the vacant stool, a heavy-set guy with a bottle of beer in one thick paw materialized out of nowhere to claim it. He was focused intently on the blond Adonis gyrating on the bar, so he did not see that there was a competition for the stool.

Wren stopped and regarded the man with his brown eyes, hoping his telepathy was in good enough working order that the man would feel the force of his gaze. At least one thing would go right on this shitty day, Wren thought, and that one thing-all I ask-is that this character makes eye contact with me.

Lo and behold, he did. Wren smiled prettily, trying to buoy up the older, balding man’s ego with the combined force of his slightly gap-toothed, turned-up-at-one-corner grin and his shock of red hair, his slender hips encased in denim, and the geek allure vibe he knew he gave off. He knew because he had been told he was a sexy nerd on more than one occasion.

The guy did a bit of a double take when he saw Wren trying to make eye contact, smiling. He looked up at the dancer and back at Wren, as if he had to decide between one or the other. As if he had a choice…

Wren winked.

That was all it took. The older man stepped back, away from the stool, and gestured with his hands, the perfect gentleman, that Wren should take it.

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Rick R. Reed is all about exploring the romantic entanglements of gay men in contemporary, realistic settings. While his stories often contain elements of suspense, mystery and the paranormal, his focus ultimately returns to the power of love. He is the author of dozens of published novels, novellas, and short stories. He is a two-time EPIC eBook Award winner (for Orientation and The Blue Moon Cafe). Lambda Literary Review has called him, “a writer that doesn’t disappoint.” Rick lives in Seattle with his partner and a very spoiled Boston terrier. He is forever “at work on another novel.”

Visit Rick’s website at or follow his blog at You can also like Rick on Facebook at or on Twitter at

Sex for 3 with Jacob Z Flores

Before I begin, I wanted to say thanks for allowing me to guest blog here at Mantastic. I also wanted to let your readers know that as part of the blog tour, I’m holding a contest. All you have to do is leave a comment with your email to this post, and your name is entered to win a free electronic copy of 3. If a reader happens to follow all my blog stops, then she or he can leave a comment at the other sites a well. This means that someone could enter 7 times for a chance to win the book. At the end of the tour, a winner will be chosen and announced.

** Blog Tour dates and locations can be found HERE**
Visit each blog stop for more chances to win – 1 2 3 4 5 6 7.

Now that that’s out of the way, I have to tell you how nervous I was about this blog post. I’m used to blogging in obscurity on my website, not for such a popular blog!

I wanted to do something unique, but everything I came up with seemed lame.

What to do? What to do?

Then, the idea hit me like a shot of tequila. I can share what I’ve learned about the rules involved for having a threeseome, or as I’m calling the post “Sex for 3.”

Now, before you start calling me a pervert, which may or may not be true, there’s a reason I chose this topic. My new novel 3 is an m/m/m contemporary romance. As such, there are three main characters trying to work out a very complex relationship dynamic, and what can be more complex than turning the horizontal tango into a line dance?

Let me tell you, it’s pretty complicated!

Now, I’m not saying necessarily that I’m speaking from personal experience. What I’m saying is this: I’ve done extensive research on the subject.

Since I’ve done all this research, I thought I’d share the fruits of the many exhaustive hours I’ve spent on the subject.

So, without further ado, here are my top 3 rules for sex for 3:

#1 Communicate Before You Copulate

Even though you might be ready and willing, you have to use your mouth to establish rules before you can use it for anything else.

If you are one of the partnered couples, you need to understand what the other person in the relationship is comfortable with. Will either of you be allowed to penetrate the third party or will the festivities be confined to hands and mouth only?

If you are the third party, you need to know what you can do to your hosting couple and clearly define what they can do to you.

It’s really all about respect. Without respect and communication, the party will likely turn bloodier than the prom scene in Carrie. Believe me, no one wants that. I’ve seen Carrie like fifteen times, and that girl was pissed!

Now imagine pissing off your partner or one of the partners involved by stepping out of bounds. I’d say that’s worse than having a bucket of pig’s blood dumped on your head.

#2 Give Unto Others As You’d Have Them Give Unto You

Some people enter into three-ways thinking they will be the star of the show. That’s not always the case and can leave you disappointed and perhaps feeling a little neglected.

If you want to be the star of your own sex show, stick with regular man on man, woman on woman, or man on woman action. If you’re okay with sharing the spotlight, then you’ll be fine.

So, when you’re not the star, play a supporting role and help out the other two where you can. Eventually, the spotlight will return to you. Remember, sometimes it’s the supporting actors in a good movie that walk away with the Oscar.

They can make or break a performance.

#3 Make Three a Company

Do whatever you can to keep all three members of the three way involved. While this may seem to fly in the face of rule #2, it really doesn’t. Everyone involved needs to be okay with not being the center of attention, but you’re having a threesome for a reason—to have sex with two other people at the same time! Therefore, you should make the session as much of a group activity as possible.

Find a way to stay plugged in to the other two in some way. Bad pun aside, it’s important for the experience. Whether it’s with tongue, fingers, or some other protruding appendage/device, there’s a way to do it.

Take the initiative to find a way. After all, exploring is part of the experience.

If you follow these three rules, based upon my research, the three of you are in for a very good time!

I’ve had fun writing this tongue-in-cheek post. (I know, another bad pun!) If you’re still with me and interested in my book, I’ve posted the blurb below!

Once again, thanks for having me (so to speak)! It’s been a blast!

by Jacob Z. Flores

Justin Jimenez has loved his partner, Spencer Harrison, for ten years. He’ll do anything for him—including bury his feelings for a man he met while he and Spencer were separated last year. Justin never planned to fall in love, and he certainly never planned to tell Spencer about it—but when a phone call wakes them in the middle of the night to inform Justin that his former lover, Dutch Keller, has been in an accident, he doesn’t have a choice.

Justin’s revelation shatters the fragile relationship he and Spencer were trying to rebuild. The weight of his guilt—both for hurting Spencer and for leaving a heartbroken Dutch to find solace in a bottle—crushes him. But what Justin doesn’t know is that Spencer and Dutch guard an explosive secret of their own. All three men are tangled in a communal web of lies, and unless they find the events in their lives that ultimately led them to friendship, passion, and betrayal, they won’t see the love at the heart of the pain.

Question: Although every person I’ve talked to who has already read 3 has raved about it, there are some who say they will not read it because it is a threesome and they don’t feel threesomes are presented as an equal partnership … that someone is always left out or “lesser.”

I see you mentioned on the Romance Reviews Blog stop that you discovered a previous bias to threesomes yourself.

What would you say to those who may have a similar bias that would encourage those readers to pick up 3? Are there any specific, yet non-spoiler things you included to ensure that all three men “read” as equal? Especially considering all the implied history and memories between Justin and Spencer, and the added pressure of adding someone after a betrayal.

Answer: I have also heard similar comments about menage books. It’s one of the reasons I wrote this book as you already know from one of my previous stops.

What I would say to those with bias is this:

3 isn’t a story about unchecked libidos. It’s a story about three men who find themselves in a difficult situation, one that some people can’t fathom or understand, and that’s part of what this book is about–understanding and opening our eyes to something that is different.

The novel is told from all three men’s points of view and spans about a decade in their lives. I told the story this way so that each man’s perspective and character could be revealed to the reader. I wanted the reader to see their hopes and dreams, their flaws and foibles, and the parts of each of them that make them unique.

They aren’t perfect. They are far from it, but their journey, though lined with pain, brings them something they never could have found without starting on this path.

They redefine what love means for themselves.

Jacob Z. Flores lives a double life. During the day, he is a respected college English professor and mid-level administrator. At night and during his summer vacation, he loosens the tie and tosses aside the trendy sports coat to write man on man fiction, where the hard ass assessor of freshmen level composition turns his attention to the firm posteriors and other rigid appendages of the characters in his fictional world.

Summers in Provincetown, Massachusetts, provide Jacob with inspiration for his fiction. The abundance of barely clothed man flesh and daily debauchery stimulates his personal muse. When he isn’t stroking the keyboard, Jacob spends time with his husband, Bruce, their three children, and two dogs, who represent a bright blue blip in an otherwise predominantly red swath in south Texas.

Jacob’s second novel, The Gifted One, has been accepted by Dreamspinner.

You can follow Jacob’s musings on his blog at or become a part of his social media network by visiting,!/JacobZFlores, or