Enniskillen man Ryan Love is on the way to literary stardom after releasing his debut novel to great acclaim last week.
Released on Thursday by global publishing powerhouse Harper Collins – who described Ryan as “a star in the making” when he first signed a major two-book deal last year – ‘Arthur and Teddy are Coming Out’ is a heart-warming tale of the bond between a grandfather and grandson.
The story centres on 79-year-old Arthur Edwards, who has spent his whole life ‘in the closet’ but is finally ready to come out to his family as gay and live the life he never could. Meanwhile, his 21-year-old grandson Teddy has also come out to some of his friends, but is not quite ready to tell his family.
The novel, which is already receiving rave reviews, follows Arthur and Teddy as they navigate their way through love and heartbreak, and learn to accept who they truly are.
Ryan – who is a widely published journalist who first started his career here at the Herald – said when writing the book he “wanted to make people smile as much as possible.”
Explaining how he himself had a very positive coming out experience when he was 19, thanks to the support of his family, he noted that sadly that wasn’t the case for everyone, and said he hoped Arthur and Teddy’s story could help others on their own personal journeys.
Speaking of his family’s support, Ryan has dedicated the book to his mother, and when speaking to the Herald he said the support of his parents Jack and Thérèse and his siblings throughout his literary journey had been “incredible.”
“Mum and Dad have been on this whole little rollercoaster with me,” said Ryan. “I was sending Mum every chapter as I was writing it, then getting her feedback along the way.
“It was really special being able to write a dedication and acknowledgements, just making sure they all knew how much I love them and appreciate them getting me here to this point.
“They’ve lived and breathed the whole experience with me, so publication day feels like a bit of a family event.”
Ryan, who attended St Michael’s PS and St Michael’s College, also paid tribute to a former teacher, recalling how when at school English “was always my happy place.”
“My primary six teacher Mr Liam Monaghan was someone who had a huge impact and really encouraged that love of English.
“That’s probably when I was really dreaming of getting to do this,” he said.
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