Month: August 2017

Did This First Time Author Game the NYT Best Seller List?; Colton Haynes On Being An Openly Gay Actor In Hollywood

Did This First Time Author Game the NYT Best Seller List?

It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything about publishing, but this was too good to resist. It’s about an author who allegedly gamed the NYT best seller list to get to the top, and I’m guessing that no one told her about how brutal the Internet book communities can actually be to alleged gamers. We’re talking a major shitstorm, the likes of which I haven’t seen in a few years.

Last week, authors and booksellers in the young adult books community began tweeting about paranormal romance novel Handbook for Mortals by debut author Lani Sarem, which had appeared with little fanfare at the top of the Times’ list for bestselling hardcover books for young adults. Sarem, people on social media claimed, had gamed the Times’ ranking by buying her own book. Publisher GeekNation, the entertainment site that launched a book imprint with this title, has yet to respond to a request for comment from Quartz.

It’s a long article, with a lot more to read. You can check that out here. It’s interesting to see how all this works. And, for the record, it’s not the first time an ambitious author has been accused of gaming the system.

The author in question denies any wrong-doing.

Colton Haynes On Being An Openly Gay Actor In Hollywood

I follow Haynes on Instagram and he’s really very intense. As an openly gay author, I get why he’s so intense. And, he’s got it a lot harder than an author because his profile is so public and so many people are always watching everything he does.

“Hollywood is so f**ked up. So much of the focus is on your personal life & has nothing to do with the talent you have to bring to the table.

There’s more here. I truly do worry about Haynes and other younger gay actors and performers who come out of the closet. Of course I support them all 100%, but I think they have to pay a price, even nowadays. And that price can be steep for many. I just hope Colton knows we’ve got his back no matter what.  

Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon


Kathy Griffin Ends Friendship With Anderson Cooper and Takes Back Apology; Update: Trump’s Transgender Military Ban; Martha Stewart and Snoop Dog Again

Kathy Griffin Ends Friendship With Anderson Cooper and Takes Back Apology

After Kathy Griffin tweeted a horrible image about Trump, there was backlash. Big time backlash. I’m no fan of Trump, but even I thought Griffin crossed the line. It was that bad…gruesome. And with her bold expression of free speech, she had to deal with the consequences…because that’s what free speech is all about.

Speaking to The Cut, Griffin says she knows Cooper was in a difficult position, but felt she at least deserved a text or phone call from him before he decided to tweet about it.

She claims he added insult to injury by telling Andy Cohen on “Watch What Happens Live” that he and Griffin were still tight — despite the fact that he hadn’t reached out to her since the photo was released.

You can read the rest here. There are comments, and there are arguments, as you would imagine.

And, as if that’s not enough of Griffin, here’s a link to a story where she’s now taking back her apology for tweeting that thing she tweeted about Trump. What’s really a shame is that she seems to be blaming everything on “Trump fans.” I’m not a Trump fan. I think it was a bad joke. It’s not like the good Trump jokes are that hard to come up with either.

Three months after apologizing for a photo shoot in which she held up a fake “decapitated” head of President Donald Trump, Kathy Griffin said she wants to take that back.

“I am no longer sorry, the whole outrage was B.S., the whole thing got so blown out of proportion. I lost everybody – I had Chelsea Clinton tweeting against me!” Griffin complained in an interview with Seven Network in Australia, where she is on tour.

Here’s the link to this one. 



Update: Trump’s Transgender Military Ban

Here’s the latest on Trump’s discriminatory transgender military ban.

The military’s transgender troops will be able to continue serving in the armed forces while Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis hears recommendations from experts.

In short, there’s going to be a panel that will examine the transgender “issue” and report to Trump. As of this moment, while they examine the “issue,” nothing will change for trans people who are already in the military.

You can read the rest here. We’ll just have to wait and see where this one goes. I am curious to see what this panel comes up with. Frankly, I don’t trust anything I’m reading right now, nor do I trust anything coming from the Trump administration anymore.

Martha Stewart and Snoop Dog Again

Here’s something on the lighter side of the news.

In case you were unaware, Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg co-host a food show on VH1 called Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party. The show features games, recipes, music, and celebrity guests like Kathy Griffin, 50 Cent, and Robin Thicke, to name a few.

You can read the rest here. I’ve never seen the show, but I’m not that into cooking food either.

Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon


Ed Skrein Leaves "Hellboy" for Whitewashing Controversy; "The Originalist" Play and Legal Same Sex Marriage; Gay Couples Who Didn’t Use Condoms

Ed Skrein Leaves Hellboy for Whitewashing Controversy

When I was in college I remember taking a History of Film course that was taught by Professor Harvey Flaxman. Harvey’s claim to fame was the old cult classic, Grizzly.  He produced and wrote Grizzly. He was a fascinating teacher and I loved every class I took with him. And one of the things he talked about in History of Film was how Hollywood has always been notorious about whitewashing other cultures in films. Of course he didn’t use the word whitewashing…or appropriation. But he did show us how they used to take white male actors who were over six feet tall and make them up in yellowface.

I can tell you for certain that if you even try to explain cultural appropriation and whitewashing to some straight white people you will never win the argument. You won’t convince them, and you will leave shaking your head. They can’t help themselves, so don’t engage.

However, this article is interesting because it’s still happening. It’s happening with Asians, with African Americans, with Gays, and probably with some other group that I’ve missed. Straight white privilege doesn’t seem to have lines drawn when it comes to these things.

At least Ed Skrein did the right thing with this one…

Less than a week after being cast in the Hellboy reboot as Ben Daimio, a Japanese-American character in the original comic book series, actor Ed Skrein has dropped out of the film, citing the brewing controversy over his hiring.

Skrein wrote on Twitter. “I accepted the role unaware that the character in the original comics was of mixed Asian heritage. There has been intense conversation and understandable upset since that announcement, and I must do what I feel is right.”

You can read more here. I think I’ve gained a new respect for Skrein. And Skrein’s reply is a lot better than the way Jim Sturgess replied to the controversy about yellowface in Cloud Atlas, which I posted about here back in 2012.    It’s just kind of sad that it’s still happening five years later.


“The Originalist” Play and Legal Same Sex Marriage

It took almost a century for someone to even mention, slightly, that Gone With the Wind was offensive to many people. And I think it might take even longer for anyone to mention how many things are offensive to LGBT people…even those “things” that don’t seem offensive at first.

In this case I’m talking about a play I watched on PBS the other night called, The Originalist. It’s not offensive in the sense that it hurt my feelings. I’m a lot tougher than that. But it’s offensive in a way that makes me want to roll my eyes so hard they fall out of my head.

The Originalist is a 2015 play concerning the Supreme Court career of Antonin Scalia. The play was originally produced for stage performance in Washington DC in 2015 at the Arena Stage. Scalia was invited to meet with several of the actors and members of the production crew and helped the actors define the part portraying him as a character in the play. The play received positive reviews in The New York Times and has played in theaters from coast-to-coast in the United States from California to Washington DC. In March 2017, the play the broadcast nationally on Public Television in the United States with Edward Gero playing Scalia.

The play itself is not offensive, at least not on the surface. It’s actually kind of brilliant. They get into a lot of discussion about legalized same sex marriage, and it’s all very balanced and politically correct. However, as a gay person sitting there watching them argue same sex marriage back and forth, I can’t say I didn’t find it both amusing and offensive. Conservative Scalia argues facts and the constitution, while his ultra liberal clerk argues humanity, love, and heart.

Neither one of them could be called out for being wrong. But it’s always been more than just those basic arguments. Just imagine me sitting there watching, a gay man who has been with his husband for over twenty years. My first thoughts were why aren’t they mentioning inheritance taxes, and power of attorney. Why aren’t they mentioning all the pragmatic things gay couples deserve just like straight couples. Maybe it’s too boring to talk about those things?

I’m not really sure. But the play is very good and I’m glad I watched it. I just wish they’d been a little more on target and realistic when it comes to legalized gay marriage and what it really means to long term gay couples.

Then again, look at how long it took for someone to talk about Gone With the Wind for what it really is.

You can read more about the play here. 

Gay Couples Who Didn’t Use Condoms

This is really dumb. And for a variety of reasons. They did some kind of idiotic study where they asked gay men if they used a condom the last time they has sex and it turns out over two thirds didn’t use a condom. But it’s highly flawed, and here’s why…

Despite the majority admitting their last sexual encounter was without a condom, this did not always indicate unprotected sex was necessarily dangerous. Same-sex couples who are married or in committed long-term relationships may choose not to use condoms when having sex with each other. 

There’s more here.

Check out the comments, too. You’ll see that most agree with me on this one.

Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon


James Franco’s Gay Role In "Wild Horses"; Actor Dean Cain Loves Trump; Doxing Neo-Nazis

James Franco’s Gay Role In “Wild Horses”

I guess the gay presses must have missed this James Franco movie. Maybe it wasn’t commercial enough for them to use as clickbait? I didn’t see it mentioned anywhere and I wouldn’t have known about it if I hadn’t done a simple search on Netflix for gay movies last night.

In fact, I didn’t even know Franco was in the film until part way through. I knew there was gay content, but I didn’t know Franco was playing a gay role. And, once again, he did a wonderful job and I loved the entire movie. It’s so hard because he can be so annoying sometimes in RL, but always so talented in everything he does.

A detective opens up a fifteen-year-old missing persons case and begins to suspect that the missing boy was murdered – and that a local rancher was involved.

You can read more here at IMDb. Wild Horses is not being promoted as a gay film, and it’s not really just a gay film, which is nice for a change. We get gay content, but it’s not stereotypical at all. I’m glad a found it.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that Robert Duvall stars in this one, and he wrote and directed it, too.

Actor Dean Cain Loves Trump

It’s impossible for me to support a President who wants to ban transgender people from the military. However, I guess other people feel differently, and that’s probably because the things Trump does and says don’t really affect them very much. It’s easy to support someone who targets and bullies if you come from straight privilege. If you’ve never had to fear being banned from the military, why should it bother you?

As NewNowNext points out, intent to break our hearts and remind us everything is terrible, Cain has joined the ranks of Antonio Sabato Jr. and Scott Baio, telling Access Hollywood, “I voted for Trump. He has my support.” 

You can read the rest here. I’m really not too fond of the far right base supporters of Trump, but I don’t like to judge the swing voters like Dean Cain. I think Trump’s lost a lot of his swing voters in the last few months, and I think he’s going to continue to lose even more in the future. His base will always follow him, but if they put a strong candidate up against Trump in 20/20, that candidate will win by a landslide over Trump. I just hope the Democratic party is paying attention.  

Doxing Neo-Nazis

I’m glad I found this article, because I believe doxing is, and always had been, absolutely wrong. If you don’t know what doxing is, here’s a basic explanation.

As much as I detest neo-nazis and all they stand for, I detest doxing even more.

As the shame campaign shows, doxing has become the new outing. With so many digital fingerprints available, it’s increasingly easy to sleuth out the background of questionable characters and shame them in the public space. Doxing and outing share similar philosophies–some things are so bad that the expectation of privacy gets tossed out the window–but there are some critical differences.

You can read the entire piece here. It doesn’t really draw any definite conclusions, but it does make us wonder if doxing anyone is the right thing to do…for all of us. I’ve seen what doxing can do to people. It’s something that was done by the most vituperative people in the meanest book communities in the early days of the Internet. There are people who never recovered.  

Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon


More On Trump’s Transgender Military Ban; New Dungeons and Dragons Inclusive of LGBTI Identities; Queer Muslim Woman Running For Atlanta City Council

More On Trump’s Transgender Military Ban

Sometimes it’s hard to parse this one. We know, for certain, that Trump supports a transgender ban in the military. That’s a given. He tweeted that openly and it’s always going to be out there in writing.

Friday (25 August) afternoon, Donald Trump issued a memorandum ordering the end of transgender military service effective in 2018.

In short, it sounds as if Trump wants proof that if there are trans people serving in the military they won’t cause problems. I’m not sure what that means because there’s a lot of information out there already. And I have not seen one single argument yet that supports a transgender ban that can’t be disputed easily.

Then there’s this…

It is important to note, however, the memo also states ‘the Secretary of Defense, after consulting with the Secretary of Homeland Security, may advise me at any time, in writing, that a change to this policy is warranted’.

There’s been a lot of criticism about Trump’s ban from all sides, calling it both discriminatory and “disruptive.” And a good deal of this criticism for Trump’s ban is coming from within the military as well as the American people.

You can read this in full here. It’s one the better articles I’ve seen so far, and it’s not too long or too complicated.

New Dungeons and Dragons Inclusive of LGBTI Identities

I see a lot of straight people I know frown at things like this. And many of these straight people claim to be friends of the LGBTI community, too. They think that because they “accept” us, and they are now willing to tolerate us being out there in the open, that’s all there is to it. And we should be grateful to them for that.

But they never stop to think that the world is predominantly straight, or that LGBTI people have never had much content at all with which we could identify. Even the little bones they throw us, like Brokeback Mountain and Will and Grace, are so white-washed and filled with stereotypes half the time WE don’t even know the difference. I think the worst offender is this one popular romance book review web site where they occasionally review white-washed gay romances that have nothing at all to do with gay culture, and, are written by non-gay authors. They make me cringe. It’s a lot like the way they exploit Amish romances written by non-Amish people. Unfortunately, these book bloggers are straight and have the power, and that’s not going to change any time soon.

So I’m thrilled whenever I see something like this…

Dungeons & Dragons, the fantasy tabletop game, has made sure its newest editions are more inclusive of LGBTI identities.

Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) was originally created in 1974. Now, over 40 years later, the popular game seeks to include people from all walks of life.

Here’s the rest. 

Queer Muslim Woman Running For Atlanta City Council

Here’s a break from a lot of the hooded stereotypes I see so often these days on social media.

Atlanta, Georgia may be electing their first queer Muslim woman to their city council.

Liliana Bakhtiari, the daughter of Iranian immigrants (her father is first-generation and her mother is second-generation), has been politically aware from a young age.

You can check the rest out here. 

Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon


Where The Trump White House Stands On Transgender Military Ban; Dating App Daddybear and Your HIV Status; A Fan Insults Nick Jonas’ Height

Where The Trump White House Stands On Transgender Military Ban

Here’s an article that gives some information on where the Trump White House now stands on the transgender ban in the military that Mr. Trump Tweeted about not too long ago.

Other than the basic fact that we know, for certain, that Donald Trump tweeted about his transgender military ban for the entire world to read, the rest is still questionable.

The official wouldn’t say whether service members who had come out would be allowed to continue to serve their country.

You can read the rest here. I haven’t seen too many follow ups, but when I do I’ll post more.

Dating App Daddybear and Your HIV Status

Admittedly, I don’t know much about dating apps and it’s hard for me to comment. But even without knowing much, I don’t think I like what I’m reading here.

I think the point behind the app is to connect wealthy older gay dads with healthy young bears. Which means they allegedly don’t want anyone who is HIV poz.

If you are worried about meeting gay men who are living with HIV, then you can feel relieved with our App because we are trying our best to make sure that all users you meet will be healthy and without HIV, starting from adding a feature to allow users to verify their health condition.
Here’s a link to the rest.  The comments are interesting in the sense that you’ll learn a little bit more about how some…and I mean some, not all…gay men think. 
A Fan Insults Nick Jonas’ Height
I don’t even know how tall Nick Jonas is. But this whole height thing always bothered me in the sense that so many people seem to care about it. I’m six feet three inches tall and I always wished I was a little shorter. Evidently, Nick Jonas has the opposite problem.
A fan spotted Jonas on the street, asked if Jonas would take a pic with him, and Jonas agreed. Later, the fan posted the pic and made a comment about Jonas’ height that left Jonas less than thrilled.
“You need some manners ‘bruh’… I didn’t need to stop to take that picture with you. Just rude. Very rude.”  
Here’s the rest.   Maybe Jonas was having a bad day. 
Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon


Suing For Straight Discrimination At the Cheesecake Factory; Gay Days At Disneyland; Will and Grace and Grindr

Suing For Straight Discrimination At the Cheesecake Factory

This one is a little unusual, but not totally. A straight guy who used to work at the Cheesecake Factory is suing them because he claims they allegedly allowed a gay employee to “touch him.”

According to his lawsuit, a male co-worker grabbed Ross’ butt and crotch while he was working a shift in August 2016.

Here’s the rest. It gets worse, and it gets into legalities that I don’t like to comment on. The comments are worth reading, though. And I will say this: I know what it’s like to be sexually harassed and it’s not fun. And men, gay or straight, tend to keep these things to themselves.


Gay Days At Disneyland

This October is the 20th annual Gay Days at Disneyland in California.

The first Gay Days Anaheim two decades ago drew a couple thousand people. Today the event attracts tens of thousands, mixing and matching in red T-shirts with non-LGBTQ people. 


You can read more about it here, and see photos.  This really has turned into a huge event and I believe it’s things like this that are, and have been, replacing the entire concept of the gay bar. We don’t have to hide anymore.

Will and Grace and Grindr

I’ve been wondering how they would approach the new episodes of Will and Grace. So much has changed for gay men since the 90s. Evidently, they’re not going to forget about hook up apps.

A new promo for the revival finds Jack (Sean Hayes) fidgeting with Grindr and opining, “I feel like I could get finger herpes just from scrolling.”

There’s more here.  

Ryan Field Books

Said With Care



A PG Rated Gay Romance




Not All Gay Books Have Sex

In Their Prime by Ryan Field

Amazon