Thursday, August 30, 2012

Interview with Ken Harrison, of Seventh Window Pubs.

My friend and fellow author, Kergan Edwards-Stout, interviews my publisher, Ken Harrison of Seventh Window Publications. Ken mentions my upcoming novel, When Love Calls Your Name.

 To read the interview, please click here:

Kergan Edwards-Stout is the author of the award winning novel, Songs for the New Depression, available through and other fine retailers.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Six Sentence Sunday, 08/26/2012

In preparation for the release this fall of my novel, "When Love Calls Your Name"  from Seventh Window Publications, I am running these six sentences. I originally posted them on my other blog, Jeff's Journey on March 18, 2012.

Chaos theory states that something as inconsequential as a butterfly flapping its wing in South America could ultimately cause large-scale events, possibly even a hurricane in China.

I had heard of the so-called Butterfly Effect; Ray Bradbury described it in A Sound of Thunder, and Ashton Kutcher even starred in a movie entitled The Butterfly Effect yet I never expected to experience it myself. 
My “butterfly” arrived in the form of an envelope from the Superior Court telling me I had been assigned to the courthouse in San Fernando, about 25 minutes from my home in Lake Balboa, a small community in the San Fernando Valley, north of downtown Los Angeles. However much I disliked jury duty, I was resigned to my fate, and  had postponed the inevitable until winter recess from school and now I had to serve.  I called in to register like a good boy, and then waited until the day I had to call in to see if I needed to report.  Damn, I did have to go in on Monday.

Review: "Missing" by Drake Braxton

I review the debut novel, Missing, by Drake Braxton:

A foreign-born gay man goes missing in the United States. Not quite the most interesting premise for a story but, when the man is the legally married husband of a male US citizen, it becomes a bit more complicated what with same-sex marriage recognized only in a handful of states. Move the setting to rural Alabama, hardly a bastion of tolerance, either for gays or for the foreign born, and you have the premise of Missing, the debut novel of new m/m romance author, Drake Braxton.

Blain Harrington attends his high school reunion with his gorgeous Brazilian-born husband who suddenly goes missing during the reunion. Being the hopeless romantic I am, I was first attracted to the book as it was being marketed as an m/m romance. And yet, Braxton bends the rules by bringing many suspenseful moments into the story thereby creating a romantic thriller or perhaps a thrilling romance. There are plenty of plot twists to keep the reader involved in the plot and many a moment for the romantic to shed a tear with just the right amount of sex to titillate. For me, it was quite the page turner on all accounts; the suspense, the romance, the sex, the trifecta! I am anxiously waiting his next release.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Six Sentence Sunday 8/19/12

Here are six sentences from some future project....

"I still don't know if I can trust you," she countered.
"Nor do I know if I should trust you," replied Rolf.
"But I do," Graydon said, walking over and taking Rolf's hand. "We will help you rescue your friend."
"My betrothed. She was kidnapped before we were to be wed."

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Six Sentence Sunday, 8/12/12

Here's six sentences from an unfinished project of a very different nature for me.

“I hope I am not being forward,” he breathed, “but I have wanted to kiss you for a while now.”
“A while tonight, or…”
“A while since I first saw you in the store. You are an incredibly sexy man.”
“But I am older than you.”
“Yes, I know. I have always found older men to be sexier. I’d love to take this upstairs.”
“The ziti will get cold.”

Saturday, August 11, 2012

"My Secret"

I wrote this poem ca. 1985, as I was coming out.

"My Secret"

You think you know my secret?
How much to you think you know?
How much do you really know?

Do you know of my pain?

I can't be one of those...
I'm not like that.

A yearning to be with him...
I can't...
He's cute...
But I can't...
I want to...
I can't...
I need to...
It's wrong...
But he's cute.

Do you know of my rejection?

You can't play here.
You're a faggot.

Girls, don't fall for him,
he's queer.

See the new guy over there,
he's a fag.

Get away from me, faggot.

Do you know of my ultimate rejection? 

No son of mine is...

My brother's a what?!

Get out of this house and
don't come home for Christmas.

Do you know of my loneliness? 

Can I see you again?
Oh, I see.

What do you mean it's over?
We had two months and now it's over. Why?
Just because...

Does anyone want to dance with me?

I go home...

Would someone just hold me?

Do you know of  my agony?

No homosexual will ever enter the Kingdom of Heaven!
Charman Falwell
Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve!
Kill a queer for Christ!
Stone him!
But God loves everyone. 
Not sinful, blasphemous, loathsome homosexuals He doesn't.

Do you know that part of my secret?
I didn't think you did.

Do you know this part?

Do you know the joy of discovering yourself?

Pieces of a puzzle scattered over a vast tabletop,
some hidden from view,
some of the floor,
some missing and maybe lost.
A picture finally complete,
No gaps, no holes, 
The corner pieces in place,
and the edges, too.

Finally together
After all these years

Do you know the feeling of pride
as you unashamedly march
in The Parade 
carrying a placard
"God Loves Me GAY!"
with your head held high?
Do you know the love
of sisters and brothers
cheering you on
applauding you
as you stand in front of the Fundies
who shout obscenities
at you
because you celebrate
Do you know that love?

Do you know of my success?

Mom, Dad, what's the matter?
Is someone sick?
Has someone died?

You want me to come home for Christmas?
May I bring...?

I can?!
We'll be there.

Mom, Dad, I love you.

Thanks, I know you do.

So, you think you know my secret?

I don't think you do at all. 

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Review: Marengo by Carey Parrish

Take a very diverse cast of characters -a meddling, busybody landlady but who has a heart of gold, and her tenants: a gossipy, single, middle-aged, flamboyant gentleman; two very handsome American journalists stationed in London; a seemingly too-proper male and one beautiful, single, divorced female. Mix that with the spring unveiling of a world famous jewel designer’s line, add some unexpected twists and turns and you have Marengo, by Carey Parrish. The book begins slow which gives the reader time to get to know the characters but as it progresses, like a proverbial roller-coaster, it builds, twists and turns leaving the reader wanting more. In some points it seemed a little formulaic and I anticipated many plot twists, I was surprised I discovered I was wrong and he took me in a different direction. It is a fun read and very enjoyable.

Review: Well With My Soul, by Gregory Allen

Well With My Soul by Gregory G. Allen tells the story of two brothers, Jacob and Noah Garrett. One is gay, the other straight. One is liberal, the other conservative. Both are on their respective paths in life and as is often with brothers, their life paths take them in different directions. As it true with siblings, they have their own interpretations of their life growing up together and how their parents treated the other brother, which in my family has been very revealing.
The story itself is an emotional ride through the ups and downs of sibling rivalry, filtered through the gay/straight and liberal/conservative lenses. Jacob is lured off to New York by the dream of a successful career in modeling and show business with all the glitz and glamour that goes with it. With Jacob off in New York, Noah feels duty bound to stay home with their mother, hurt by Jacob’s rejection of their small town comfortable life in the American South.  As the story progresses, the brothers find their paths cross and have taken some unexpected twists, much like life itself.
The story itself is a look not only at the relationship between the two brothers as they examine their own relationship with the other, but also their relationships with the significant others in their lives, and most importantly, their relationship with themselves.
Allen’s storytelling is touching, at times very light-hearted and at other times very deep, but always provoking.  The story resonated with me in such that I began to examine my relationship with my brothers.  A definite must read.

Review: Songs for the New Depression, by Kergan Edwards-Stout

In Songs for the New Depression, Kergan Edwards-Stout takes us back to the days of the AIDS pandemic. We follow Gabriel Travers on his journey to find love and (self-) acceptance but we follow him in reverse beginning with the current third of Gabe’s life and then backwards to the first third just after coming out in high school.  This is an emotionally engaging read, often difficult at parts especially for those who have watched a loved one being ravaged by an incurable illness. It is very moving and poignant yet balanced with the right amount of humor as not to leave the reader depressed, or make light of Travers’ quest. Edwards-Stout pulls the reader in with his very real characters, scene descriptions, and keeps the reader turning page after page. A must read.

Review: Proud Pants, by Gregory Allen

Proud Pants: An Unconventional Memoir, but Gregory G. Allen is just that; unconventional. This is a very touching memoir of a man recalling his difficult life; a life filled with addiction, abandonment and anger issues.  He recalls his life, slipping back to the past, returning to the present, like a patient slipping in and out of consciousness. It is gripping and at times difficult to read, but very moving and deeply touching. All in all, a must read.