Meet David McManus, Author of the Reluctant Cuckold Series
For most cuckold erotica fans, David McManus needs no introduction. He is the author The Reluctant Cuckold and Cuck Storm Horizon, and the next book in the series, Cuckold Uncharted, has generated a huge amount of buzz. Rumors have been flying about possible titles and draft manuscripts traveling from hand to hand. David has been thrilled and humbled by the attention. Now fans have a chance to hear from him directly.
I know you expect to be finished with Cuckold Uncharted soon. But it’s been over two years, and I’m sure your readers are wondering, what’s the hold-up?
It just was far more challenging than I expected. When I started back in early ’15, I approached the third book like it was just a continuation of the second. So Chapter 1 was simply Chapter 31 of Horizon and I’d simply go on with the story from there. But that approach didn’t really work. My drafts lacked direction. I needed to understand the ending, what it was going to be, what “The End” looked like. I needed to know what I was writing toward, where the drama was driving toward, and I just wasn’t getting it.
Then, at the beginning of this year, I was derailed by some personal issues. And it wasn’t until really September that some things resolved, and I had time to write again. But I’m very focused now on finishing the book, and I’m working on it every night. I finally understand what the third book’s about–the tone and rhythm of the story. So I’m progressing at a much faster pace. Kind of like I felt writing the second half of Horizon. Where the characters start yapping away and things just seem to flow naturally. So I’m working hard to be done by the spring.
I understand this third book will not be the last in the Reluctant Cuckold series?
I’m not thinking past this book, but it won’t be the end of the story. I came to realize that for this part of the story I just couldn’t rush the narrative to Halloween. So in terms of time frame covered, it’s similar to Cuck Storm. But what deflated me was realizing I was writing an ‘interim’ book. I even lowered my own expectations, like, “Maybe I can bang out a book that’s half the length, since it’s only an interim book anyway.” Which I couldn’t get motivated for.
It wasn’t until this summer that I understood the ending, where I was writing toward, that I finally saw the book with its own identity, different and apart from the other two. And whether true or not, I’ve convinced myself that this is the book. That it doesn’t matter that it’s an interim book. That if I write this well, it can be more substantial than the other two.
Because to be motivated, I have to feel that it’s more important. It’s was kind of the same way with Cuck Storm. Like the five-day time frame concerned me, just how radical a change that was from RC. Even though it seemed like a risk, it just felt necessary to slow down and not rush through the second week. But my rationale was, it has to be told this way, and I have to let it be its own book. I had to show Dave in his full world. And that’s when motivation kicked in, and the words just started coming out more naturally.
So how would you say the writing of each book has been different?
When I first started RC, I thought I’d tell the story in one book, and that it would be maximum, 200 pages. But suddenly I’m 200 pages in, and I haven’t brought the main character, Mike, into the story. I started to panic, “like how the hell do I end this?” And I kind of rushed the last hundred pages. So the ending was almost arbitrary. Like scrambling for the final scene to call it quits.
With Cuck Storm, I wanted to write more complete chapters, and I thought much more about structure and story arc. I wanted a purposeful end point I was writing toward. I also wanted to let the scenes fully play out. In RC, I felt I copped out on some key scenes, not following through with the whole conversation. Like I regret cutting off the scene where Ashley admitted to Dave about having sex in the bathroom. It was lazy of me, and a cop-out.
I think part of it was, with RC, I wasn’t really thinking about people ever reading it. Readers were kind of an abstraction and I hadn’t looked into publishing. So the “people are gonna read this” part of it wasn’t really on my mind.
With my second book, I figured I’d get some old RC readers, meaning at least some readers. So I took it more seriously. I had people reading it now, so I wanted to write a better book.
Well, you certainly have anxious readers now. Your Author Page has over a thousand posts discussing your book. How did that start?
Back in early 2015, a colorful fellow named Taniwha began posting his thoughts about my books. And soon others started joining in the discussion. I was stunned when there were fifty posts, and couldn’t believe it when it just kept continuing. I’m hugely grateful to all of them and plan to dedicate the new book to them, actually. ‘Cause if wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t have done it. They are my motivation for finishing this, and finishing this soon.
Has having such a dedicated group on your Author Page increased the pressure?
Yes, but I view the pressure as a good thing. I’m lucky to have people who are into my books. And hugely appreciative. So I really want to deliver a compelling and captivating read. I want this book to be the one that stands out for them. And that even though it’s not the final book, it’s complete and satisfying in its own way. So they’ve upped the pressure because I don’t want to let them down. But they’re also what’s giving me the motivation right now. So the motivation complements the pressure, and I block it all out when I’m writing.
Do you interact with your followers on your Author Page?
I haven’t been–I’ve been totally MIA actually–and I feel really bad about it. I said hello in the fall of 2015, and then was distracted with other-life stuff. I didn’t want to even look at my Author Page because of the little or no progress I was making. And now as I’m in “finish the book” mode, I’m just blocking out all distractions. But I definitely want to apologize and plan to be far more accessible once Uncharted is done.
I also want to address a few people I began emailing with. I was locked out of my Yahoo email in June and haven’t been able to get in. So I hope to be back in touch with them when I’m done.
Can you give us an idea of what to expect in Cuckold Uncharted?
Since a lot of the exposition was taken care of in Cuck Storm, and Dave is home, I’d say the book is more revealing about Ashley. Like Dave will learn what led up to Ashley’s night in the bathroom. And hopefully, she’ll be less of an enigma. Readers will have a better idea of what makes her tick.
So if Dave was the star of Cuck Storm, Ashley’s definitely a co-star in Uncharted. And of course, Mike plays a significant role. Tamara’s given a real opportunity to talk, so she’ll be less two-dimensional. Jim Murta also gets an appearance, more lines than he had in RC. No wild departures or surprises, like Dave flying off somewhere.
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