Today I am so pleased to welcome Jason T. Gaffney, Ed Gaffney, and Suzanne Brockman to Joyfully Jay. Jason and Ed have come to talk to us about their latest release, Fixing Frank. They have also brought along a copy of the first book in the series to give away. Please join me in giving them all a big welcome!
Jason T. Gaffney writes the California Comedy series of rom-com novellas with his longtime screenwriting partner, Ed Gaffney, who also happens to be his dad. Their latest book, Fixing Frank, is out now in ebook and POD from Suzanne Brockmann Presents, a new line of m/m category romances. They’re excited to be here at Joyfully Jay today, being interviewed by their editor and publisher, Suz Brockmann, who Jason refers to as Mom.
Suz: Fixing Frank takes place on the set of a fictional reality web-series called Fixing Our Future, in which contestants complete ridiculous challenges to win money for the charity organization of their choice. Jason, you’ve had some experience of your own creating a web series (The Comedy Minute with Jason T. Gaffney). You chose to use scripted comedy sketches, rather than the reality format. After writing Fixing Frank, any urges to bring Fixing Our Future into real life?
Jason: Right now I’m focusing on scripted series, but I love the concept of fixing our future. Who knows, maybe in a few years I can team up with someone and help get some money to some great charities while being wildly entertaining, too!
Suz: How about Fixing Frank? Any interest in doing a movie version of this book?
Jason: I would love to turn all of the California Comedy series novellas into movies at some point. We’re intentionally writing short books that would translate almost perfectly into the ninety-minute rom-com movie format.
Ed: Most books are too long to make into a movie without cutting out something crucial. But novellas are the perfect rom-com movie size.
Jason: So we’re really writing novelizations of the rom-com movies that play in our heads!
Suz: You guys write comedy, which is desperately needed by people going through dark times. (AKA all of us, right now!) The internet can be great sources of humor, which is why a web series like Jason’s Comedy Minute is so much fun to find and share. You co-wrote many of the sketches. Do you have a personal favorite?
Ed: Episode Ten: Carl’s Date with a Lawyer. The actors—Jason (Carl), Whitney Avalon (the lawyer), and Sylvia Batey Alcala (Carl’s date)—did a wonderful job enhancing the script with their performances. Keep an eye on Sylvia — she doesn’t speak in the sketch, yet she delivers the funny!
Jason: My favorite sketch is Ep One, Rushing to Judgment. Not only is the script awesome, but it was fun to play a character outside of my normal wheelhouse. That, plus Sylvia’s performance makes me laugh every time!
Suz: Give us a link to a video (that’s not one of your own) that makes you laugh, no matter how many times you’ve seen it. (My personal fav is Sexy Pool Party by BriTANicK!)
Jason: I’ve always been a huge fan of slapstick/schadenfreude humor, and one of my favs is a Peter Pan fail of a stage production where set malfunctions happened. (Ouch!)
Ed: My go-to is one of the opening scenes of a Pink Panther movie. I laugh like an idiot every time he pulls on the wire at the end.
Suz: For me, Twitter is a rage-y, angsty site for up-to-the-second political news, but I love it because no matter how bad things get, there’s always someone in my feed who can make me laugh (or at least groan). Readers can follow you guys at @JasonTGaffney and @EdGaffney2, but who else should they follow to get their daily dose of comedy?
Jason: Yeah, these past months have been… (shakes head) But okay, there are a few people who, by combining their politics with humor, still bring me a bit of joy, like George Takei, Billy Eichner, Megan Amram, Sylvia Batey Alcala, Ben Siemon, and Rob Delaney.
Suz: You teamed up to write the award-winning m/m rom-com movie, The Perfect Wedding, and you’ve also co-produced Ed’s LGBTQ thriller, Russian Doll, which will be appearing in LGBTQ film festivals in the very near future. (Jason stars as a really creepy psychopath!) You’ve also co-written the California Comedy series of rom-com novellas (Creating Clark, A Match for Mike, and the latest Fixing Frank). Your next movie project, Anaylsis Paralysis, is also a m/m rom-com. What keeps bringing you back to comedy?
Jason: The thriller was fun to make, and while I loved playing the bad guy, comedy—especially rom-coms—are definitely in my blood.
Ed: And after years of watching m/f rom-com movies, we love telling stories that go “Boy meets boy, boy loses boy…”
Jason: Wait, it’s “Boy meets boy, boy bangs boy, boy loses boy…”
Ed: Right! Romance novel! Which also includes that required HEA, “boy wins boy…”
Jason: “And they live happily ever after!” I never get tired of that!
Fixing Frank CC out now (click here for a quick video featuring Jason and Ed)
First grade teacher Terry O’Dell is thrilled when he’s chosen as a contestant on Fixing Our Future, a popular reality web series where the winner raises money for charity. A few weeks of light-hearted challenges and fun competition is exactly the kind of distraction he needs to get over his breakup with his fiancé. But when Terry learns that handsome landscaper Frank Vacca is another contestant on the show, his excitement turns to dread. Because Terry’s ex ran off with Frank’s ex. It’s only a matter of time before their embarrassing personal history is exploited by the show’s producers, in hopes of going viral with on-camera tears and maybe a table flip or two.
But Frank is not the kind of guy who waits for life to happen to him, and he decides to fight fire with fire. When their secret is exposed, he impulsively declares that he and Terry are better than ever, because they, too, have hooked up—in fact, they’re engaged. Already popular, the pair instantly becomes internet royalty. Of course it’s all a sham, and only a matter of time before the truth comes crashing down. But then, Frank and Terry—long at odds and constantly arguing—actually begin to fall for each other. And that’s when things really start to go wrong…
Jason T Gaffney and Ed Gaffney are a son/father writing team who have collaborated for over ten years on stage plays (Looking for Billy Haines), and movies (Jolly, The Perfect Wedding, Russian Doll). Recently, they joined forces to write m/m novellas that include laughs, emotions, and hot sex scenes. (#awkwardnotawkward) They are currently in pre-production for their next m/m rom-com movie, a micro-budget feature, working title Analysis Paralysis.
In addition to his writing, Jason is an award-winning producer and actor. His credits include the web series, Fame Dogs, which just won the Indie Series Awards for Best Comedy and Best Ensemble, Comedy, and the award-winning LGBTQ rom-com The Perfect Wedding, which he co-wrote with Ed. Ed’s other projects include an Edgar nomination for his legal thriller, Enemy Combatant (Dell, 2008). He’s also the writer/director of the indie film Russian Doll, a f/f thriller, in which Jason plays the bad guy.
Websites and social media links:
Jason and Ed have brought an epub copy of Creating Clark (California Comedy, book 1) to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Sunday, June 25th at 11:59 pm EST.
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