Saturday, November 30, 2013

Ramblings of a Gay Mad Man

     I don’t have a specific subject this week, so it is going to be a bit of a mish-mash of thoughts I've had this week. We’ll see if y’all can keep up. Yes, there will be a test! 

     First off, I need to make a few clarifications on my post from last week. Charlie Harding contacted me and let me know that there were a few facts that were not completely correct from the article I’d used as my reference. 
Top to Bottom 5: Daddy's Turn
Charlie Harding and Mike Dozer
     One is that he indeed has recently done his first bottom scene before on film, entitled Top to Bottom 5: Daddy’s Turn, with Colby Jensen. I thought so, but wasn't quite sure, which I did mention. Secondly, in the recent scene where he went bareback, he was not bottoming, which the article implied he was. He was topping and with a good friend of his, Mike Dozer. Since this is a good friend, they each knew each other’s status, and they therefore trust each other, additional testing was not needed. So I stand by my statement that it is an individual choice and no one else’s business. I’d like to thank Charlie for contacting me and setting the record straight. 

     This was the week of Thanksgiving here in the States, as I’m sure everyone knows. You’d have to be living under a rock not to have noticed. Several things crossed my mind. Sometime around Tuesday I noticed I was feeling a bit off for some reason. Of course my vertigo had decided to show its ugly head, so I thought that was it. Wrong. It persisted all through Wednesday until I finally realized what it was. I wasn't cooking! Now as most of you know, I was in the food and hospitality industry for most of my adult life, so cooking was something I was used to, along with working most holidays. If there was a holiday I wasn’t working, I was still cooking for family and/or friends. Mostly friends, but I’ll get into that later. The point is, I was feeling a bit odd about the whole thing. Antsy might be a good word. Just odd for me, is all. 

     Yes, I spent the holiday alone. No, I didn't have a problem with that. I really am quite happy with my own company and do not have an issue with being alone, even on a holiday. I did turn down a few dinner invitations, and that was my choice. Not to worry. I fixed myself a very nice dinner and was quite happy with it, and I didn't have to share the pecan pie! 

     I think my biggest issue was that I felt as if I was supposed to be doing something and couldn't for the life of me remember what it was. You ever have that feeling you’d forgotten something really important that you needed to do, but couldn't remember? Yep, that is how I felt. Once I realized what it was I had to laugh at myself. I truly am a creature of habit. I tend to develop a routine and stick to it. Hell, I even make sure to put my toothbrush back exactly the same way every time. 

     This leads me back to what I referenced earlier when I said ‘family/friends’. I saw the above picture and I had an immediate reaction. Several, actually. My first thought was how I had chosen a family to spend time with, especially holidays. Those people who I called my friends, brothers and sometimes lovers. The next thought was a pang of hurt at having been rejected by part of my own family. 

     When I was nineteen or twenty, I can’t really remember, I was living in Knoxville, my hometown so to speak, and it was Thanksgiving. I had worked that morning, of course, and was racing to try and make it to my family’s Thanksgiving dinner. I stopped to get gas and then my car wouldn't start. Using a payphone—this was long before cellphones—I called my Uncle Pete to see if there wasn't someone who could come get me. I knew there was. Most all of my cousins, aunts and uncles were there, and it wasn't that far away, so I was pretty secure in feeling that I’d have a ride. He said they were just about to sit down to dinner and he would see what he could work out. 

     I sat there waiting for three hours. When I finally realized I was on my own and there would be no one to come and get me, I walked home. Back in those days there was nothing open, much less a garage or mechanic to deal with the car. On the way home I stopped by Gus’s Greek Diner, which was about the only thing open. They were Greek and didn’t really know much about the holiday so they were open for business. I had a great gyro, several baklava and called it a day. 

     The next day my mother called me, furious, wondering why I hadn't shown up for Thanksgiving dinner. When I told her she was dumbfounded. Seems my dear Uncle Pete never mentioned that my car had broken down. My uncle had become one of those born again Baptists and didn't approve of me or my ‘lifestyle’. I was able to calm my mother down and told her not to worry about it, stating that it had happened and there was nothing to be done about it now. 

     On a bit of a side note here: My cousin, dear Uncle Pete’s only son, attended Liberty College. For those who are not familiar with it, it was founded by Jerry Falwell, the leader of bible-thumping evangelists who promoted gay hate from the very beginning. The cousin got a Master’s Degree in Theology. He officiated at my aunt’s funeral, one of my favorite aunts, and it was so bad I sat in the back and giggled. His English was so bad, it was embarrassing. So much for that degree! 

     I only wish that dear Uncle Pete had lived long enough to see his idol arrested on drug charges. There was the homemade porn collection that included teenage boys going at it, along with several videos of bestiality, but the biggie was all the drugs the man had. When he was interviewed later, he said the devil had put those things in his house. I had to laugh. 

     Long story short, I never darkened dear Uncle Pete’s doorstep again. I was always working most holidays, and several years later I had moved far enough away to where I wasn't expected to make an appearance anyway. I’m sure it was a great relief to certain portions of my family, which suited me just fine. Whenever I was in close proximity, at other family functions that I did attend, I made sure to go out of my way to be as charming and as nice as I could be. 

     Years later, I was asked by one of my other cousins, dear Uncle Pete’s eldest daughter, why I was never around for other family functions. I politely told her that I refused to go where I wasn't wanted. She questioned me further and I told her the story of what her father had done. Poor, dear cousin’s face tightened and she apologized for her now dead father. I even got an invitation to her wedding, which was nice. I sent a lovely pair of crystal candle sticks with regrets. Too much water under that bridge. 

Over the years I made my own family. We always got together either on the actual holiday, or a day or two later. I can still remember the moaning of those who were forced to attend family gatherings. Most of them didn't want to attend but felt obligated, which made me cringe inside, wanting to yell, ‘then don’t!’ But each of us have to deal with our families and coming out on our own terms, so I kept my mouth shut for once. Not an easy feat for me. Even back then, I was out and proud of it. Something that wasn't all that common back then. Many gay men lived in the closet for their own reasons. A lot of the time it was because of family. I found it sad that they couldn't live their lives and truly be themselves. It still happens, but not nearly as much as it did all those many years ago. Me? I had to be me. Period. 

     So did I have a good Thanksgiving? Yes, absolutely. I did things I wanted to do. I ate what I wanted to eat. I spoke to my sister, even though she was busy dealing with her in-laws, bemoaning that they got on her nerves. It seems that family, no matter if you’re gay or straight, can be a royal pain in the ass. 

     What I really want to convey here today is that gay men, and I’m sure lesbians too, are very strong independent people. We have to be. A lot of time we have no choice but to be strong. Often times we are shunned by our own families. I've witnessed those who were denied jobs or fired because they were gay. I've seen and been a victim of hate crimes. I've seen the look on people’s faces that changed to disgust when they have found out that I or others were gay. Or the look of pity, which is by far worse, and even recently ‘I didn't know they got into watching sports’.

     Do NOT feel pity for the gay man, because he has a backbone of steel. Most are independent, strong, well educated, well-adjusted men. Remember the old adage? That which does not kill us makes us stronger? Yep, I’d say that’s just about right. 

     Moving on… stay tuned and come back tomorrow. Yes, I will be doing an additional blog tomorrow. Something important. So stop back by tomorrow. 

     Remember, doing something nice for someone else is truly a gift to yourself. 

     Later y’all, 

      Max ;-)
Because I can!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Welcome and happy Saturday.

     Happy Saturday, everyone. Hope y’all are enjoying your weekend so far. This may be, for some folks, the last weekend before the madness of the holidays. I’m abstaining this year. I’ll be too busy packing and getting ready to head south, to Florida! YAY! 

     First the latest news… 

Mon Héros
     My Hero is now in French! I’m now international. LOL I’m thrilled. Thanks to Bénédicte Girault and Valérie Dubar for the translation. They are available for other authors who choose to have their works translated. You can look them up on Facebook. There is a link under the cover if you would like a copy of Mon Héros in French! 

     So…I've gotten quite a few comments appreciating this blog thing I’m doing here. Not so sure why, but it seems I've given quite a few people an in-depth education on what it is really like to live as a gay man. Guess I’ll go with it and take it as a compliment and just keep doing what I’m doing. Now, it is true that most gay men are truly a breed unto themselves. Did you know that in Ancient Greece, gay men were considered children of the Gods? It seems that they had the best qualities to raise children. Imagine that, would ya? Many were extremely masculine, perhaps uber so, but also very maternal. Wonder what the religious right would think of them apples? 

     Okay, moving on to the topic of the week. Safe sex, or the lack thereof… 

     First off, let me state for the record that there is no SAFE SEX. Let’s just agree on this point and accept it. Nothing is one hundred percent safe. End of discussion. So we are left with safer sex. 

     There has been a big controversy over the past few weeks in the gay community about porn stars going bareback. Now this has been a fairly contentious discussion in our community, with some getting really nasty about it. I don’t see a need for that, personally. There is no need for someone to go after some of these guys personally. Just not cool. You can make your point without all that crap. 

Charlie Harding
     So why now? Why the big shake up? Well, let me tell you. A fellow Atlantian, Charlie Harding, is doing a premier shoot as a bottom…and doing it bareback. (I could have sworn he’d bottomed before, but I may be wrong.) Anyway, this really went viral, stirring the stink pot up once again. 

     One side says it is sending the wrong message to gay youth that it is okay to go raw, while the other side says it is fantasy, and everyone should remember that. Okay, I get both sides of that argument. However—and it is a big however—everyone should take responsibility for their own actions and make up their own minds what is best for them. No one else. 

     This reminds me of cartoons. Yeah, I know…strange jump there, huh? But bear with me. Let’s take Tom and Jerry, for example. I’m sure most of you can remember those classic cartoons. If you look, you’ll see that those cartoons were more than a little violent. Road Runner? Same thing. He was constantly dropping large objects on Wiley. Now would you do that in real life? I’d hope not. Bugs Bunny and Yosemite Sam were always shooting at each other and Bugs was beating the hell out of poor Sam. Get the connection now? 

     Porn is fantasy, people. Do you really think that all gay men are stupidly gorgeous with huge dicks? Ummm….. NO! Most are just average Joes like myself. Okay, granted, most gay men are better looking than the average male, but there are some reasons for that, which I’ll go into at another time. Nothing scientific there, just my own observations and experiences, mind you. 

     Back to the subject at hand. Condoms versus non-condoms. I’m going to be as clear on this as I possibly can, which is not always easy. Basically, it isn't any of YOUR business if these guys chose to go bareback! Clear? That is THEIR personal decision. Do you honestly think that they are not aware of the risks? I've known several gay men in the adult entertainment field, and I've yet to think of any of them less other than highly intelligent, especially Mr. Harding. Okay, there was this one, but he was so good looking no one really cared, especially his boyfriend. 

     Before Charlie Harding went through with this shoot, he and the other guy were tested, tested and then retested. That part is fact, not that it is anyone’s business but theirs. That is taking responsibility for your actions and your partner’s safety. Follow me so far? 

     Granted, there are a lot of gay men out there who are not as diligent about being tested as they could or should be, but most are. I know of several couples that are in monogamous relationships, and still get tested as a matter of habit. It’s just part of their normal health routine, and I don’t think it is a bad practice. Just sayin’. I think it helps keep them honest if you know what I mean. 

     I started thinking about this subject on Tuesday this week, so I had time to do a little research. No surprise that the majority of porn is heterosexual. Men are men, and most men are pigs when it comes to visual stimulation, gay or straight. Sorry, but that is just how we’re wired, I guess. First stop on my research train, choo-choo, was the CDC (Center for Disease Control). Not surprising, but there were more male-to-male infections than heterosexual ones over the past five years in the US. Black men were off the charts in particular, which was a surprise to me. Of course, these statistics are for the US only. 

     Next stop, WHO (World Health Organization). Well what’d’ya know? Flip. Total opposite. More women are reported infected in the rest of the world. Was I surprised? Nope. Nor was I surprised that there are more anti-virals prescribed on the continent of Africa than in any other region in the world. (This is a major point of contention for me, which I may go into another time.) 

     Oh, so you think you are so smart, eh? I can see many of you sitting there all smug, pleased with yourselves saying… “I knew it!” HA! Not so fast. What, you may ask? There is a HUGE reason for this disparity in statistics. In this country more gay men are tested than any other portion of the population, considerably so.I'll even go so far as to say there are more gay men tested in this country, per capita, than anywhere else in the world! So I ask you this: WHEN was the last time YOU were tested for HIV? Unless you are a gay man, I would be willing to bet that most of you will say never or it has been a very long time. Then ask yourself: When was the last time I had unprotected sex? Hmmm? How confident are you in your sex partner? Can you be one hundred percent sure that this other person is totally committed to you and you alone? Is anything ever one hundred percent? Remember, no safe sex, only safer sex. If you are a white female in this country, the chances of you having been tested for HIV is almost zero percent, barely a blip on the screen. 

     Now let me go back to my porn investigation… ugh. Yes, I did it. I went looking for straight porn. It was a chore, let me assure you. I’m not a big porn watcher to begin with, and this was not something I enjoyed. (GAG) Trust me on this one. But what I found was that of the sampling I did see, not once did I see a condom used. Nope, not one. No latex was ever visible. Which makes me ask, why the double standard here? Now I did go and check and in most instances I found that even in the straight porn industry, stringent HIV testing was done. Good for them. But again, why the double standard? I've yet to hear anyone screaming that these people were not practicing safer(er) sex! At least within the gay community we are policing ourselves, just like we took charge of the HIV/AIDS prevention programs back in the 80’s. Hell, most gay bars have a large container of condoms out free for the taking. I've not seen that in any straight bar I’ve ever been to. Have you? 

     I guess it all boils down to this: Take responsibility for yourself. Those who live in glass houses… well, you can finish that one. 

     In most all of my books, condom use is clearly stated, up to the point where a commitment is established. And in each case, my characters knew each other and their habits very well by that point. Yes, I've had comments from readers who didn't even like that! I would like to ask those very people about their own condom use and their HIV testing practices. Anyone brave enough to withstand that kind of scrutiny? 

     Romance novels are fantasy. They only represent real time and people. They are not real people. Porn is also fantasy. It is there for entertainment purposes, just as novels are, nothing more, nothing less. It is all a land of make believe where we go to lose ourselves in another place and time. We love to fall in love with characters and sometimes they become very real to us. If that happens, that is wonderful. It only means that the author or actor has really done their job well, but keep in mind it still isn’t real life, folks. 

     If you have an issue in watching bareback porn, then don’t watch it. It really is that simple. If you don’t care for the way I write or any other author, there are so many other wonderful authors out there whom I am sure you’ll enjoy. It is your choice, just like it is their choice to go bareback or not. 

     This wasn't supposed to be a rant, just educational. I guess I’m just trying to point out how a gay man would view all this. Like I said, I think we are a different breed, and therefore think differently. One of the big things I’d like to mention here is that gay men really do take care of themselves, for the most part. They are above the norm for obtaining higher education. Why do you think there are so many companies soliciting their products to gay men? For the most part, gay men make more money and have more disposable income. That also is a fact that I learned several years ago from a marketing professor at the University of Tennessee. (Go Vols!) 

     I guess what I’d really like for everyone to take away from this is, give it a rest. Set aside your notions that erotica is corrupting people, or leading them down some dubious path. Be an adult and take responsibility for your own actions and choices and then leave the rest of us to do the same. 

A Christmas Memory
  Oh, one last promo… A Christmas Memory is available. If you need a little jump start to get yourself in the mood for the holidays, give it a try. This is one of my favorite stories. Nice warm fuzzies. 

     Go forth this week and remember to do some little something nice for someone else. It will come back to you. Promise. 

     Till next week… by y’all! 

     Max ;-)
Because I can.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

More Mad Ramblings...

     Yep, it’s Saturday. Yep, I am sitting here wondering what the hell to ramble on about today on this blog. I really do have trouble coming up with topics sometimes. I mean, who in the hell wants to know what is banging around in my head? 

     First off, I feel better than I have felt in a long time. One reason is that my move to Florida is becoming a realization. Met with the movers this week and have a set date for said move. Started gathering things to start packing up with, and that really makes me know that this is really about to happen. Yeah, I’m thrilled. 
Wished they looked like this!
      After I was forced to retired from professionally cooking, I floundered around feeling lost. Yeah, it was okay for about a month of not having to go to work, but after that? I was restless, bored and feeling as if I had been tossed aside and no longer viable, if that makes any sense. Friends that I had started to fall away. Understandable. I wasn't really part of their lives or contributing like I was. Not their fault, just the way things work. Of course I still have contact with a few, but nothing like it was when I was working and interacting on a regular basis. 

     Then I was literally pushed into this writing gig. It at least gave me something to do with my time. I felt like I was being somewhat productive. Of course, it was a pretty rough start. Remember, the only thing I’d written in over 30 years was a menu! Oh, gag, it was bad to start with. English? Sentence structure? Trying to remember all those pesky grammar rules? Forget it. I gave up in frustration many times, but was continuously prodded back into it several times. 

     Is this going anywhere you may ask? Hell if I know. That’s why I say I ramble. 

     Oh…yeah. Maybe so. I got a review this week on A Christmas Memory that had me reeling. Yes, it was favorable, but it was not so much the actual review of the story but the review of me. I was stunned. 

     You see, I don’t think much about what I write or more importantly, how I write. I just let the characters tell their story. There are times I don’t even feel as if I’m in the same room as they are. They really do take over. I guess in the end it does come from me, somewhere deep down, but I’ll be damned if I can explain it. It…just happens. Makes me wonder sometimes though if I could be diagnosed as a schizophrenic though, with all these voices screaming in my head. There’s a thought. 

     So…what else… 

     OH, I did release A Christmas Memory yesterday. Duh! Much to my amazement it has already received quite a few reviews, and all of them, so far, are five star. Woo-Hoo! I’m glad. This was such a fun story to write. These guys are just lovable, no other way to say it. If you feel like a little push to get you into the holiday spirit, go and check it out. I think it might just make you go out looking for mistletoe. 

     Guess that’s about all I got for this week. Oh…one more thing… 

     I’d like for everyone to reach out and do something nice for someone. Doesn’t have to be anything big. Holding a door open for someone, buying them a cup of coffee, but just something nice, it isn't hard to do. Trust me when I say, you can make someone’s day. 

     Have a great week everyone. 


     Max ;-)
This is Gio Dell. He is just as nice as he is handsome.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Saturday's Mad Ramblings

     Eli L Sanne from M/M Goodbook Reviews recently posted something interesting on
Crazy Mad
FB wanting to know how authors start a new book or work. It was interesting to see all the responses from other authors. At the time I was a bit busy and didn't really have the time to go into much depth right then, so I thought I would do it today. 

     I know there are others who are probably asking the same question. Yeah, I know I’m a bit different. As in most cases, the way I do things tends to be a bit off the beaten path, but I did notice a few other authors who work similarly, though not exactly. What did you expect, right? I've always got to be the odd one out, of course. Oh well, nothing new there. 

     I usually start with a little niggle of a plot. Something that I've either seen, and or heard or read about. Then it goes to characters. I use Hiveword to get started there. It’s a program that really goes into detail for character outlines. Of course it also offers plotting, scenes and locations. Lots of stuff there, but I totally concentrate on characters first. 

Inspiration for Johnny of My Hero

     One of the first things I do is look for a visual for my characters. I want to see eyes. Eyes tell me a lot. Then I want to see basic facial features. They may not be exactly what ends up in a story, but I tend to have a basic visual to start from. From there it is all character based. 

     I take each character and build an entire outline of who they are. I give them names, sometimes troublesome, but I don’t really have to wait long before they tell me. Physical descriptions come fairly easy as well. Then I start getting into the nitty-gritty part of them. This is when I really start to get to know them. Things like religion, wants, likes and dislikes, and their personality starts to really come through. I get into their families, financial situation and education. The back-story is where I begin to hear them really start talking to me. Sometimes their voices are strong, and sometimes not so strong. However, by the time I start to write, most of them are coming through loud and clear. I need to say here that most of my characters typically end up being a lot like someone I have known or a combination of several people from my past. 

     The secondary characters tend to come after the story starts. Once they make an appearance, I go back and start their outlines. Sometimes they tell me everything all at once and sometimes I have to go back and fill in as they tell me. 

     Marie, from ‘Anything For You Sir’ was so loud, I thought she was screaming. She told me everything except the one thing that would have made the most sense, but in hindsight, had she told me, I may not have written the ending the way I did, so I guess it worked out. 

     One character in particular, I remember, was a total pain in the ass. Only gave me little bits and pieces along the way. I had to keep going back and fill in things as they came. This was very frustrating because I knew where I wanted the story to go, but he wouldn't let me do it my way. Oh no, he was going to do it his way no matter what and I had to just deal with it. End of story there. Asshat. 

      Now K.c. Wells sits down and plots out her story from beginning to end. She knows exactly how things are going to go. Sometimes she gets a wild turn here or there, but she pretty much sticks to how her plot goes. Lucky her. 

     I've heard of other authors doing a plot, then an outline, then scene set ups and so on and so forth. I tried that one time and one time only. My characters said ‘Pfft’ to that and did what they wanted to anyway. So why waste my time on that when I know they aren’t going to go by what I say? Nope, they write their own stories. I’ve had some characters who were calm and took their time, making it easy. Then there was Johnny and Rich from My Hero who were bound and determined to spend as much time in bed as they could. Those two were so frustrating to me I couldn’t see straight. Yes, I did say that, get over it. They came at night when I was trying to sleep. They screamed at me in the morning before I had my coffee. (NOT a good idea) They jumped into the sack at every opportunity. 

     Let’s talk about sex, shall we? Good Lord, those two…I had forgotten what it was like to be early twenty-something. They were going at it like rabbits. Now the one thing that I learned early on is if there is a sex scene, it damned well better have something to do with the story. I was beginning to worry that this story was going to be nothing but sex, but they worked it out in the long run. It had everything to do with the story even if I didn't see it in the short term. They were able to make it clear that it was needed, so I did what they told me. However, I did threaten them. If it didn't make sense it was going to get cut! I was serious. They laughed in my face. 

     More sex? Yes, there is always hot sex. I never struggle with sex scenes. I’m not quite sure why some authors do. For me, much of it just comes from experience. Yes, I did say experience. No, I don’t go trolling through porn sites to get inspiration for sex scenes. If it weren't for some sending me links, I doubt I’d even venture there. So yes, many of the sex scenes I write about are often personal experiences. Yes, I’m a pig. Big surprise there, right? So when a woman said in a review once that the sex scenes were not believable, I had to laugh. “Lady, when you grow a penis, then YOU can judge whether it was accurate enough”, I said out loud as I clicked it away. Yep, asshat.  

     I've always heard the phrase ‘write what you know’, and for the most part I do. Now, I’m not a Marine, so that took a lot of research and I did several in-depth interviews, which were very hard to do for P.O.W. However, I am a gay man and I know how men think, feel and, more importantly, react. Which brings me to another topic: Insta-Love. Oh honey, if you've seen as many moving vans show up on a second date, you’d never question me again on that one. Gay men tend to wear their hearts on their sleeves, the poor dears. There are more broken hearts because of it that you can even count. Yep, it happens. Sometimes it works out, but most often it doesn't  So if you think some of my stories are far-fetched  then you really don’t know gay men all that well. There are times when they wait at least a few months though. Those relationships always seem to last much longer. 

     In the end, most of my stories work out. There has only been one instance where I had to go back and rewrite the ending of a story. I was told that I would be skinned alive if I didn't  I did it reluctantly and it was very hard to do. First off, the characters were a little put out about the whole thing, but after another hot, romping sex scene, they decided maybe it wasn't all that bad after all. It was so good in fact, they decided they wanted another book! So that will be next! Stay tuned for that one. 
      Here is a little news for you guys… I will be releasing a new story next Friday, November 15, 2014. A little something that I thought would get you in the mood for the holidays. I think you’ll enjoy it. 

     Till next week y’all! 

     Max   ;-)

Sunday, November 3, 2013

I'm Baaaaccckkk!

     After two weeks of not blogging, I’m glad to be back. Okay, that’s a lie. I really struggle with doing this blog. I never know what to write about. I’m always up for ideas though. Hint, Hint. 

     Two weeks ago I was tied up… strike that, I was busy with GayRomLit (GRL). Nope, there was no evidence of tying up of anyone that I saw, much the pity. I would have almost let Rick Reed tie me up. Almost. That is one fine looking man, I have to admit. 

      Last Saturday was just a bust. I had some computer malware that I couldn’t get rid of, so my boy, my computer geek, erased all the cookies and I couldn’t remember how to sign into my Google account. He finally got me signed back in. I’m so not a computer person, obviously. 

     Anyway, I’m back and I have so much to tell you guys. I’m going to start with GRL… 

     The Wednesday night prior to the kick-off at GRL I hosted a party at one of my favorite clubs in Atlanta, Bliss. It is an all-male, all-nude strip club here in HOTlanta. I had over seventy people sign up. So many that I had to hire a bus to transport us all. I also offered a little contest to the person who had the most single one dollar bills with them before we got to the club. The winner? Well, I’m not going to say without permission, but she had over $200.00 in singles. I’m still wondering how many she had remaining when we left. 
Not Bliss, but you get the general idea.
     Some of the more memorable moments of that night was Mary G. getting the most fabulous lap dance from Jackson. The look on her face was priceless. Had we been able to take pictures, that one I would have had framed, and maybe used for blackmail. Love ya, Mary, I really do. 

     Another was when an honest to god Army Ranger decided that I needed his crotch in my face. It worked for me. Chaz was a real champ and gave a great show, as did everyone else. I offer my eternal thanks to all at Bliss who made it a very extraordinary evening for me and everyone else in attendance. 
     Going into GRL I was as nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs, I’ll tell ya. There were so many great authors there. I admit I was a bit star struck. It was simply amazing. Meeting some of my favorites made me tongue tied, and then meeting those who I’d chatted with on FB was so nice. I was also able to make some new friends, who I know I’ll keep up with for years to come. 

K.c. Wells and I for the Masquerade Ball.
     The real excitement for me was that K. c. Wells got to spend an entire week with me. We had a blast. It was special for me because I got to cook for her. I’m pretty sure she enjoyed it. Of course, I achieved my main objective which was to get her drunk off her ass. Two Manhattan’s did it. 

     What else… 

     Of course! P.O.W. was released the same night as the Bliss party. That was a big surprise since it wasn’t supposed to be released until that Friday, so the party was even better. One of the dancers there got a copy of the cover and made flyers up, so that there was one on every table. It made me very happy and very nervous at the same time. For those of you who were able to attend, the dancers, bartenders and manager wanted me to thank everyone. It seems they had as much fun as we did. To purchase P.O.W.
To purchase P.O.W. Click here

     P.O.W., what can I say here? It is not for everyone and not your typical read, and I knew this going in. I was prepared to get all kinds of criticism for the content, which I did get. What got me was one review in particular that said she had a problem with one of the main characters throwing wood at the drop of a hat. Made me wonder if she read the right book? If you start playing with a man’s junk, especially at that age, they are gonna get a stiffy. With the right stimulation, a guy has no real control over that. Sorry if you don’t like it, but that is just how things works. 
And here is proof. LOL
      Do you realize how hard I would be smacked if I presumed to know all about childbirth and disputed any part of it? I would have every woman in the world all over my ass. I really had a good laugh over that one. And yes, you can go read it for yourselves if you don’t believe me. Look for the one star review there. 

     Okay, I guess I’m going to do a little bit of a rant here. I’m going to use the one star review for P.O.W. as a prime example. I mentioned earlier about the erection thing. Yeah, it happens. You can’t always control it. Ask any 13-20 year old male who will pop wood in a stiff breeze. It can’t be helped, it just happens. 
Yep, another example. I'm sure this guy would have done his best to keep his boner down, don't you?
     Now, let me tell you, for those who may not know it, I’m a gay man. I’m old enough to have done most things sexually at least once, twice if I liked them, and even more if I really, really liked them! I like a lot of things. I write from a gay man’s perspective. So when I see some heterosexual, or heteroflexible, female tell me how gay men act between one another, or more accurately tell me it isn’t true, I’d really like to smack ’em upside the head. “What’re you thinking?” It is a pretty well-known fact, or should be, that men and women view sex differently. Gay men view sex even more differently, so please, explain to me how a straight female is bold enough to tell me I got it wrong? Please? 

     Speaking of reviews…I try not to look. There are people who look enough for me, even though I’ve told them they don’t have to, or not to. I will look at those who do reviews and then send me a link. I have no issue with that. I look at it like this: if you don’t like what I write, then go read something else. There are literally thousands of books to choose from. Go, be happy. Read something else. If you choose to write a negative review, I can only hope that you give an open and honest reason why you didn’t particularly care for a book, mine or anyone else’s. 

     Reviews - this was a subject that I heard mentioned several times during GRL. The one thing that really bothers me the most about bad or not good reviews is some people think it is quite okay to attack other people personally. Okay, you didn’t like their book, but there is no need to get personal with it. As I told someone long ago, ‘If you don’t think you can say it to someone’s face, then don’t say it online’, period. 

     That’s going to be my final word on that subject… Damn, but I do feel better with that off my chest. 

     I’ve been asked over and over again what I am currently working on. I tend to keep this fairly close to the chest. Why? Sometimes I veer off in another direction and start something else before I’ve finished what I’d started. There will be something that catches my interest and off I go. Then there are the times when a new story demands to be written right then. Funny thing about that. Those are the stories that seem to just flow right out of my fingertips and I have no say about it. I end up just going with the flow and see where it takes me. My Hero was very much that way. Those guys just did their own thing while I sat here rolling my eyes. 

     I will tell you that I have finished a story and am currently working on the edits. It is a Christmas story that I think most of you will like. It is a small novella, so a quick and easy read. I actually wrote it last Christmas while I was in the mood and shelved it, saving it for this year. 

     Now for the big news: Johnny and Rich aren’t done with me as yet, it seems. They are yelling in my ear constantly now. I have a feeling that another story about these two will be coming in the very near future. 

     Oh and yes, there is yet another story that is going on in my head that is demanding to be told. A more serious piece about yet another Marine who is now home and dealing with some serious PTSD issues. The research on this is taking some time, but I want to make sure I’ve got it right. I’ve already done three interviews on the subject. One with a Vet who is no longer in service, one who is currently enlisted and still in service and a non-service man, who suffers from PTSD. I have one more interview to conduct before I really dig into this one. Stay tuned. 

     Ahhh, yes…and I do have yet another full length book that is finished and about to go into edits. This one is way off the beaten path for me. I actually did it for NaNo last year on a dare. Again, I think most will like it. After I got into it, it was fun. 

      Wow, this had turned into one long blog today, so I’ll end it with another announcement. Drum roll please… I’ve signed up to do the UK Meet in Bristol, UK next June. 

     I’ll try and do better and keep more up to date with the blog. 

     Till next week, 


Just because I can.