Please join us in welcoming author Kris Ripper today, on the tour for Gays of Our Lives, book one in the Queers of La Vista series. Enjoy Kris’s guest post, and then be sure to check out the giveaway details below.
Ode to All Things Written
I read everything. I know all the readers say that. And we all mean it, don’t we? Because basically if I need something to read, I have no standards. I will read genres I dislike, authors I find obnoxious, short stories, epic novels, whatever you’ve got.
That whole “what book would you take to a desert island” thing has always seemed silly to me. For one: who can choose? And for two, if it was a desert island, and I only got one book, let’s be clear: I’d take the longest book I could find in a language I understood.
When I was ten or eleven doctors tried to diagnose my mad, constant headaches. So they told me to stop reading. For a week. Like, are you joking? I remember sitting there, feeling as if the greatest of human injustices had been visited upon my head. No wrong had ever been done that was deeper than the cruelty of not allowing me to read for an entire week.
And yes, of course I was just that dramatic. I’m a fiction writer. It’s kind of our gig.
I was highly supervised during this week, because clearly I couldn’t be left on my own to smuggle books into the shower, or hide them in secret pockets around my room. But what I realized is that words are everywhere. They’re on street signs and food containers and shampoo bottles. You can find words on the tags of your clothes, on all forms of packaging (those tampon directions, y’all…like, pages, with diagrams). And I drank them up during that week I wasn’t allowed to read books. I was hungry for words, desperate to consume them.
Without novels providing a constant narrative track to my life I was rootless, untethered. Time moved strangely without the turning of pages. My mind was chaotic and oddly hollow at once, the lack of characters and plots upending some tidal flow of ideas I hadn’t gone without since I first cracked the code of turning the lines on the page into words.
These days I read a lot. I’ve also nearly always got a ton of tabs up with things I’m reading. A glance at them right now: a Storified Twitter thread on diversity in publishing, a book review I don’t even know how to deal with that I keep rereading thinking I should write something about, and I’m listening to a fricking fantastic podcast episode by EE Ottoman (which inspired my Queers of La Vista series), which is not reading, but is so dense and delicious and makes me think that my brain categorizes it along with reading material. And just for fun, I’m loving this bit on giving candy to a nineteen year old.
And of course, there are books. All the books. Flowers from the Storm by Laura Kinsale just leveled me. Like, I had to put it aside for a few days because I was so caught up in one of the MC’s heads that it was disturbing my sleep. (You know a book is successful when it literally keeps you up at night.) The Society of Gentlemen series by KJ Charles is on continuous loop on my Kindle right now. I’ve also just burned through about half of Guy Gavriel Kay’s catalogue, which I love with all my heart.
My absolute favorite fiction experience in the last few years is Show Yourself to Me by Xan West. God. This collection decimated me and rebuilt me simultaneously. Absolutely amazing.
In nonfiction land, the book Longitude by Dava Sobel totally consumed me. I had…no understanding of longitude, or navigation at sea, or clockmaking. Marvelous. Also, Secret Historian by Justin Spring is one of those biographies that makes you feel you’ve stepped into someone else’s life, felt their pleasure, their sorrow, their fear. Really effective. And unsettling.
What are you reading? How does it inspire you? Do you like to be pulled completely inside a narrative, or do you prefer to maintain some distance? I, clearly, like to be totally destroyed by my reading material. What’s the last book that totally wormed into your head and didn’t let you go?
About the Book
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Collection: Queers of La Vista
Length: 232 Pages
Category: Contemporary, BDSM
Blurb: Emerson Robinette only leaves his apartment to get laid and go to work. Having MS—and trying to pretend he doesn’t—makes everything more complicated, especially his fantasies of coming on strong and holding a guy down. Finding a partner who’ll explore that with him isn’t Emerson’s idea of a realistic goal.
Until a chance meeting with a hipster on a bus makes him reconsider. Obie is happy, open-hearted, and warm; what’s more, he gets his kicks being physically dominated, spanked, and teased until he’s begging. It would be perfect, except for one thing: Emerson isn’t made for happiness, and he doesn’t see how a guy like Obie would settle for a cynic like him.
But as far as Obie’s concerned, the only thing keeping them apart is Emerson. Can Emerson handle a boyfriend who’s more invested in his future than he is? Emerson’s barely convinced he has a future. But when Obie’s smiling at him, anything seems possible.
About the Author
Kris Ripper lives in the great state of California and hails from the San Francisco Bay Area. Kris shares a converted garage with a toddler, can do two pull-ups in a row, and can write backwards. (No, really.) Kris is genderqueer and prefers the z-based pronouns because they’re freaking sweet. Ze has been writing fiction since ze learned how to write, and boring zir stuffed animals with stories long before that.
To celebrate the release of Gays of Our Lives, Kris is giving away your choice of ebook from zir backlist. (Any release from Kris Ripper prior to Gays of Our Lives.) Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on July 16, 2016. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!