All-American Boys with Robert P. Rowe

November 7, 2016

All-American Boys with Robert P. Rowe

 

Stories about sports figures and athletes abound in gay romance. I’m Robert P. Rowe and I was looking for a way to have my characters stand out in the field. There are plenty of books about football players but hidden beneath all that battle armor it’s hard to get a good look at the man inside. On the other hand baseball players are hot. A baseball cap and a tight jersey lets sports fans see just what these all-American boys are made of.

I also like stories about ordinary guys doing extraordinary things. I think stories about ordinary guys give all readers hope that they don’t need to be a millionaire to find love and success. In my first book for Dreamspinner Press, Second-Story Man, my main character, Carlos, was an out-of-work construction worker. He came from a Latino heritage but he couldn’t have been more all-American in his pursuit of the American Dream.

In The Outfielders my main characters are also struggling with economic problems. Like Carlos, these guys are in their mid-twenties, but unlike Carlos they are not trying to get by on their own. One of the sad consequences of a poor economy is that too many young people have been forced to delay leaving home to live on their own. For some families this isn’t a big deal. As adult children mature they are naturally expected to take on more adult responsibilities—while living with their parents.

But other families don’t know how to adapt to this change. They had expected that the kids would move out for college or a good job to mature on their own. The great recession seems to have thrown a wrench into this American dream. And the problem isn’t restricted to the United States. According to my senior editor, the UK has the same problem and this group is known derogatorily as kidults.

For this group of new adults, forced to continue living at home, they are not forced to take on adult responsibilities. Mom is still cooking and cleaning and Dad is still paying all of the bills. Some of my nieces and nephews are in this position and all of them have friends like this.

That’s where Tony and Alex find themselves too. They don’t realize that they are immature. Living at home is the only life they’ve ever known. But they have dreams.

A company sponsored baseball team enables these guys to continue their adolescent pursuits and fills their time while they figure out what they want from life and love. Baseball had some other advantages as a story device and the most important one is that I know the game. While I wrote The Outfielders I knew that someone would catch me if I messed up on any of the baseball rules or jargon. There are all sorts of nuances that can’t be overlooked when you’re writing a book—and one can’t expect the editors to find sports errors. I needed another kind of editor to help me out. I sent excerpts from the book off to a young sports writer. I was pleased to learn that most of my ball field scenes were accurate but he added words and phrases that gave the story the right kind of color. “Down the middle,” “popup,” and “tricky offspeed pitching” are not terms that come up in my everyday vocabulary. My favorite word was “bobbled.”

This contemporary romance takes place in the early part of 2016 and the book was released just three days before the Cubs broke their long losing streak so I couldn’t really know to add that little detail into the story—could I?

Baseball is a slow moving game and that just about sums up my main character, Tony. He’s not the brightest guy so it takes him a bit longer to figure things out. Readers fell in love with Carlos because taming the bad boy is a popular fantasy. I’m hoping that readers will find Tony to be charming in his innocence. It is one of the things that makes Tony an ordinary guy. It’s also one of the things that makes his later accomplishments seem all the more extraordinary.
Tony’s been hiding his secret crush, and the fact that he’s gay, for years. He hides another secret too. He really likes to bake cookies. With that in mind I’ve included one of Tony’s favorite recipes here. There’s no better way to curl up with a good book than to have a batch of fresh baked cookies nearby. Enjoy.

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking power
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar

1. Cream butter and sugar.
2. add eggs and vanilla. Mix well.
3. Add flour, spice, baking powder and salt. Mix well.
4. Cover and refrigerate dough for at least one hour.
5. Pour additional 1/2 cup sugar into bowl.
6. Spoon rounded teaspoons of dough into balls. Drop and roll balls in sugar.
7. Place on greased or sprayed cookie sheet.
8. Using bottom of glass dipped in water and sugar, flatten each ball on the cookie sheet.

Refrigerate dough for at least 1 hour
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Bake 5 minutes.

Check out The Outfielders today!

The Outfielders by Robert P. Rowe

Blurb:

Sometimes love can come out of left field.
Tony was waiting until he went away to college to come out to his parents and start his new gay life. Unfortunately, at twenty-four, it doesn’t look like college is going to happen after all. Stuck in a dead-end job in a small town and still living at home, with all the arrested development that entails, he finds escape in playing for the company baseball team and lusting after his straight outfielder crush, Alex. But Tony’s best friend, Jennifer, thinks she’s found a plan in the pages of gay romance novels. All Tony has to do is convince Alex he’s gay for you… or for Tony. It’s easy—just find some excuse to be alone in bed together and let nature take its course. What could possibly go wrong?
You can’t get to first base if you don’t take a chance and step up to the plate.

Where to buy:
Dreamspinner Press
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Kobo
Google Books

Author’s Bio:

Robert P. Rowe has spent his entire career as a storyteller making an incredible leap from Disneyland ride operator to show-designer and art director at Walt Disney Imagineering. Immersive storytelling presents a distinctive challenge unlike that of live theater, film, radio, or print media. Although he currently freelances, his work can be found around the world, primarily in Disney and Universal Studios parks. The theme park industry is a very cyclical business where it’s either feast or famine. For Rowe his active imagination can’t seem to take any time off. When he’s not designing fantastic worlds he’s writing about the characters who live there. Additionally his outside interests include all aspects of architecture with a specific fascination for the theatrical design of homes from mid-century movies and television. He has a keen enthusiasm for mid-century science fiction.

Author Website: http://www.robertprowe.com/

 

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