Friday, November 1, 2013

Visual Aids

Sorry for the long time between posts, but it's been a crazy hectic year and when I've had time to write I've been focusing on my stories.

Recently, I've had several requests for pictures of how I see the characters in the 'Riding Lessons' stories. I started collecting pictures to use when I first started writing the story, but a friend convinced me not to post them as he felt everyone had an image in their head of what the characters looked like.

When several of my longtime readers requested I post pictures, I gave it another thought. My biggest problem when some authors do this is that they are writing a story about high school kids and they post pictures of these thirty-something, roid-raging hulks.

I tried to find photos that best captured what I see in the characters. It was not easy and these are not 100% accurate, they are the closest I could get to what I see when I write the characters.

A few characters, specifically Nick, Mike and Noah are not included as they are real people and I know what they look like, but it was too close to home to find pictures for them.





Wednesday, January 9, 2013

GayAuthors Readers' Choice Awards

If any folks out there are members of the Gay Authors community, they are now accepting nominations for the 2012 Gay Authors Readers' Choice Awards.

The Categories you can nominate in are :

Best Hosted Story (GA Story by a 'Hosted' Author)
Best Promising Story (GA Story by a 'Promising' Author)
Best GA Story (GA Story by an author not categorized as 'Hosted' or 'Promising')
Best Non-GA Story
Best Anthology Story
Best Antogonist (Villian) in a 2012 GA Story
Best Protagonist (Hero) in a 2012 GA Story
Best Poem
Best Story by a New Anthology Author
Best GA Story by a New Author
The King (or Queen) of Cliffhangers

You can read all the rules about nominating and where to nominate at this link:

Nominations are open until 12:01 AM on January 27, 2013.

If you are a GA member and you have enjoyed the great and diverse stories that are hotsed there, please take a moment to nominate your favorite stories. Most authors do this for no compensation, but instead for the love of writing. Your reviews, e-mails and participation in awards such as this are the only validation we receive.

You do not have to nominate in every category. You can make up to three nominations in the categories you wish to.

Authors are allowed to nominate themselves and their stories, but personally I find that a bit do you accept recognition when you are recognizing yourself?

So for everyone who takes a few minutes out of their day to nominate a story or author...Thank you.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Horses

I get a lot of e-mails asking about the horses in my stories. I mention several breeds and colors and most people are not familiar with them. Then I get those e-mails 'lecturing' me about incorrect information I give about them. The main issues some take with me is my reference to size. I often describe 'Onyx' as big or huge, to me it's all perspective, Zak is the smallest of the boys and he rides a big black horse. Every horse can seem huge to someone. Alot of it has less to do with the height of the horse and more the sheer size of the horse.

But, anyways, I've gone scouring the web to find pictures that best reflect the horses that I most frequently refer to in the stories. I thought visual aides might be helpful.

Of course, I have to start with Onyx, Zak's Freisian stallion.

Phoenix, Dusty's mustang.

Ash, Mattie's Andalusian.

Revanche, Spin's Warmblood.

Apollo, Zak & Dusty's Arabian gelding.

Angel, Danny's Arabian mare.

Whisper, CJ's Paint gelding.

Zephyr, the Arabian mare that Zak learned English riding with.

And here's a sneak preview of three new horses that will be part of the story. Can't tell you who's they are yet...

Dodger, _____'s black Arabian gelding.

Keystone, ______'s bay Thoroughbred.

Scout, _______'s Paint Pony.

Hope the visuals help everyone.

Tomorrow, Chapter Four of  'Lessons Learned' will be posted on and submitted to Nifty. The mystery of Danny's disappearance will start to be solved in this chapter.


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Story Sites to Check Out

One of the questions that pops up most frequently in the e-mails I receive is 'What stories would you recommend?'

I often view this as a loaded question. Some people feel that since they like what I write, they will like what I read...I'm not 100% sold on that theory. Some of the stuff I enjoy is very similar to what I write. Younger, high school or college age characters, age appropriate realtionships, more romance, less nookie, rural settings...these are all things that I write and I like to read, but I do like the occasional hot and heavy story as well.

Let's start with where to find good stories.

I've posted a links list over there...

The first set of sites listed are those where my work can be well as many, many more stories.

Of course the 'Granddaddy' of Gay (Erotic) Fiction sites is The Nifty Archive. Over a decades worth of erotica. If you can't find something you like here, you're not looking.

My favorite site as a writer is GA: Gay Authors. I know the site can be a bitch to navigate, but the resources available to writers and the readers are really great. Readers can leave reviews on a whole story or on each chapter, this gives writers instant feedback and the feedback is pretty much the only compensation we get as writers.

More than 'just' a story site is It's Only Me From Across The Sea. This site is a wealth of information, story and resources for young gay men. While the stories will appeal to gay men (and not so gay men and women) of all ages, the site itself exists to help educate gay teens on sexual health and offers a forums section for advice and education. It was an honor to be asked to share my work on this site.

The most recent site I've been contributing to is A small story site with some great writers. One of the parts of this site I love is their use of the art of Mexican Illustrator, Areko Martiánez. I love the pencil drawing they have used for 'Riding Lessons' page.

There are many other sites out there for stories. Probably the one that most of us view as one of the best is This is one of the 'creme de la creme' sites, hosting some of the best authors out there.

I know everyone wants me to recommend specific writers and stories, but that will wait for another post.

Try exploring these sites, if you haven't checked them out before and let me know what you think or if there are any sites you check out that I haven't mentioned.


Tuesday, January 1, 2013

About the Writer...

I get a lot of questions, queries, requests, etc for personal information or background information about moi.

I share some of it, but I am a very shy and private person so I don't give out a whole lot of information about myself.

I'll see if I can satisfy the curiosity and still keep my virtual virtue intact.

I am a native New Englander. After forty years of living in the arctic, I made the move to Central Florida where I have been living for about five years. Leaving New England was not a hardship...I don't ski, I hate snow and ice.

The only thing I really miss about New England is my Patriots. I am a HUGE football fan and I love my Pats. Tom Brady, Wes Welker, Gronk, Danny Woodhead, Aaron Hernandez, Vince Wilfork...these are my 'em!!

Beyond football, I am not much of a sports fan. I'll watch a Celtics game if they are in the playoffs and I will follow the Red Sox just to see how badly they are doing.

Because of what I write in my stories, many people assume I am a lifelong rider...wrong.

I have been horse-obsessed since birth, but from the age of about 15 til my early forties I was far to heavy to ride.

In January of 2011 (almost two years), I took matters into my own hands and had a gastric bypass. Best decision I ever made...two years and two hundred pounds later I am in the best shape I've been in since high school and healthier than I've been my whole adult life.

As soon as I lost enough weight, I sought out a place where I could start riding for the first time since childhood. I found a small ranch that operates a rescue (like the ones in my stories). They rescue abused and abandoned horses rehabilitate and/or train them and try to adopt them to good families.

They do amazing work and I love riding there.

A lot of people have noticed that when I started my stories, the riding was all western and about halfway through there was a shift to Zak, Spin and now Dylan riding English. The main reason for that was that after riding western all my life, I started taking English lessons this fall. It's a bitch compared to western. Uses alot of different muscles, but definitely helps improve your riding skills.

As far as me personally, I love reading...not just the stuff you find on Nifty, etc, but authors like James Patterson, Jodi Piccoult and Jonathan Kellerman. As a kid I was often chased out of the 'adult section' of the library cuz I outgrew the 'Hardy Boys' by second grade. Stephen King was my favorite as a kid, but I haven't read one of his books in about twenty years.

I am a HUGE comic book freak (mega-geek, that's me). I am strictly super-heroes when it comes to my comics...DC is my company...I enjoy some Marvel, but DC kicks ass. My current favorite book is Scott Snyder's 'Batman'.

My love of comics is reflected in two tattoos on my upper right arm. One is of the Batman/Superman logo and the other is a Robin logo (Robin is my favorite character).

I'm a big movie buff, got my first blu-ray player about a year ago and have spent the last year switching out my collection to Blu-Ray. My favorite acquisition so far is the Bond 50 set...every James Bond movie in Blu-Ray...I am a HUGE Bond junkie.

I love music. All kinds of music. My iPod has about 20000 songs on it ranging from Patsy Cline to Eminem and from The Carpenters to One Direction and Hot Chelle Rae. I love it all.

Well, I guess that's enough about me for now.

For those who don't get e-mail updates from me, Chapter four of 'Lessons Learned' will post on Friday. For those who have been wondering about the F-150 in Zak's might want to check this chapter out.


Happy New Year

Happy 2013!!

So here I am making my first blog post.

One of my readers suggested that I start a blog to keep in contact with everyone who is following my stories since it is becoming harder and harder to keep up my e-mail and reviews.

I'm not sure how adding another communication medium is going to lessen things, but we'll give it a whirl.

First, by way of introduction, I'm Andrew Todd...or at least I have been for about three months now.

In September of this, oh wait, last year...I was on a short medical leave and having already seen every episode of NCIS, which USA seems to play over and over and over, I was quite bored and decided to begin writing a story whose basic premise had been floating around in my head for a while.

The basic idea was about a teen age boy, shy, lonely...who is made to take riding lessons at a local ranch and falls in love with the young cowboy who is his instructor.

After some stops and starts, that germ of an idea became 'Riding Lessons' a story, the first chapter of which I submitted to the Nifty Archives in early October.

I was figuring I'd maybe get a comment or two. I'd write few chapters, finish the story and that would be that.

Then all Hell broke loose.

Everytime I posted a new chapter, the e-mails would flood in. People asked me to start a mailing list letting them know when I was posting a new chapter. I received an invitation from to have my story posted on their website. I was refered to to post my stories and I received more mail and reviews from that site.

In the course of a month and a half I wrote twenty-five chapters of 'Riding Lessons'. To say I was overwhelmed by the response would be a huge understatement. I hadn't planned on such a response and really didn't know what to do.

So, I decided to end 'Riding Lessons' at what I felt was an appropriate ending spot and re-group.

One thing I had promised myself when i started and promised every reader who asked was that I would never leave the story unfinished.

As a long time reader at Nifty and other sites, there is nothing I hate more than when I get hooked on a story and the author leaves it unfinished.

Being on the other side, I can understand writer's block and life getting in the way...but my promise was that when I got bored or blocked or was through...there would always be a last chapter with a 'the end'.

After finishing 'Riding Lessons' I took a brief breather. Wrote one short story 'Infinity' and then began plotting my return to the land of 'Riding Lessons'.

Since the best way for me to continue was to add some new blood to the old, I decided that I would first write some stories to create some backstory for new characters. The first of these 'Interludes' (as I named this collection of stories) featured two new characters and was titled 'Danny & CJ'. If you've read it and cursed me out for the ending, sorry, but my intention with this first story was always to leave it hanging so I could bring CJ to the 'Riding Lessons' world and move him on from there.

My next step was to start writing the new series. I have renamed the series several times. The first title gave too much away (at least I thought it did) and I had two other names to decide between and eventually settled on 'Lessons Learned' which i felt was a more overarching title and really touched upon what I was aiming at for this new series...for the boys to learn and grow and connect.

So far I have posted three chapters of 'Lessons Learned' to Nifty and GA and I have adopted a weekly posting schedule...I post a new chapter every Friday.

I am way ahead on my writing, currently about halfway through Chapter 14.

Many people want to know why I don't post more frequently.

Several reasons: 1. I like to keep a 'buffer' of chapters in case I need to go back and change something I can, 2. By keeping to a once a week posting schedule and staying a head...if I get blocked or need to work on a new project I can continue posting without interuption.

So, why the blog? Not really sure.

I guess one reason, is that I get asked so many questions and get so many great comments, that I thought that if there was a common place to ask and answer those questions it might save time.

I may also offer insight into what I am working on.

I also get asked often to recommend new stories and writers and this would be a place to do that as well.

I'm also a very opinionated I'm sure there will end up being some rants (many of a political nature) if I keep at this long enough.

But, for now. If you haven't caught up with my writing, you can find it at the Nifty Archives,, , and soon it will be published at .

So check it out and let me know what you think.