Beware the Gay Dentist? Montgomery Clift Gay Movie and Matt Bomer; Kathy Griffin on Joan Rivers

Beware the Gay Dentist?

This link actually reminds me of something that happened to a friend of mine. In the 90’s a friend of mine was a dentist in Philadelphia. He lived full time in New Hope and commuted. Without going into a long story, someone spread a rumor that he had AIDS and his dental practice fell to pieces. He eventually had to stop practicing dentistry and he sued the person who spread the rumor for defamation. He wound up with a good seven figure settlement…but at what cost? He didn’t practice again for many years, and not until he moved to Palm Springs and became certified there. It took about three thousand miles to remove the stigma, and, he was NOT even HIV positive. All rumor.

So this news that’s happening in Italy doesn’t surprise me too much:

An Italian dentist is the victim of a leaflet campaign, informing his patients to be wary of him because he is gay. 

Alessandro Bordoni, a gay rights activist based in Tuscany, has said they do not know who made up the ‘health warning’ notices but they plan on finding out. 

‘Notice to patients,’ reads one of the leaflets, ‘a gay dentist works here, you are kindly asked to be careful and take the due precautions’. 

You know what the underlying statement is there. Here’s the rest.

I hope they find out who started this.

Montgomery Clift Gay Movie and Matt Bomer

HBO is taking the initiative to produce a film about the old film star, Montgomery Clift. He was a huge sensation in the 50’s, starring in some of the most classic films of that era, and was also one of the most tortured closeted gay men in the history of film.

The project began as an independent film but now has the corporate muscle of HBO behind it to bring it to fruition. The pay cable channel also brought the gay-themed Behind the Candelabra and The Normal Heart to the screen in recent years. 

Deadline Hollywood reports that HBO has brought in The Love Is Strange duo of Ira Sachs and Mauricio Zacharias to rewrite a script by Christopher Lovick and Larry Moss is attached to direct. 

Clift was a closeted gay man who struggled with his sexuality and what impact it would have on his career as a leading man. 

You can read more here. There’s irony and justice with this one. I doubt Clift would ever have imagined that so many years later an openly gay actor who is actually getting parts in Hollywood and has a huge fanbase would be playing lead in his life story. The article goes on to talk about how this is changing in Hollywood…but not quite as fast as I think it should be changing. I think the list of closeted gay stars in Hollywood continues even now. And in some cases I actually don’t blame them.

Kathy Griffin on Joan Rivers

It’s no surprise Kathy Griffin will be taking over for Joan Rivers on Fashion Police. TV is notorious for making bad choices like this. Look at who CNN replaced Larry King with. I guess in an attempt to prove herself Griffin is commenting now on how she’ll be different.

The comic told The Today Show this week that she will be similar to her mentor with her outspoken nature but will also have her own style. ‘I will continue, if nothing else, in her fearless style of taking no prisoners,’ she said. 

‘But our styles were different. I’m a different human being, I’m more improvisational and I don’t know what I’m going to say and neither does anyone else on the panel.’

I’m not the best one to comment on this because I was a Joan Rivers fan, and because Kathy Griffin’s politics turned me off on her a long time ago. In fact, there’s nothing about Kathy Griffin I find funny except her face, hair, and make up. She reminds me of Ruth Buzzi without the bun, hairnet and Eleanor Roosevelt shoes…but trying to  quasi chic at the same time. And I can’t for the life of me understand why anyone would let someone with no fashion sense comment about fashion and expect to be taken seriously.

But it is what it is and I could be in the minority. I hope the show does well in spite of Griffin’s lack of style and humor. Frankly, I think Joan Rivers had Griffin around for a reason and that reason had nothing to do with Griffin being strong competition. Joan Rivers was a smart woman…because you can’t be funny and dumb. 

You can read the rest here. 


Matt Bomer for Fifty Shades? Erotica Author Petition; Greg Louganis Gets Married

Matt Bomer for Fifty Shades

I know my author and social media friends aren’t interested in this, but my blog readers love it and I have to post about it as a blogger. In an unusual turn this past weekend, Charlie Hunnam made it clear he’s not playing Christian in the film adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey. He blamed his heavy TV schedule, but sources are reporting it might go deeper than that.

I posted about Hunnam getting the part, officially, here. I’ve also been following the story for a while, and I’ve been posting about how many in the Fifty Shades fandom want Matt Bomer to play Christian. And what I find most interesting is that never before in the history of film has there been such and outcry with regard to who should play a character. I actually overheard people in a restaurant arguing about it last weekend. Most want Matt Bomer. (I agree)

Fans can also wish Charlie the best, and then start day-dreaming about all the shirtless men who might get the next shot at satisfying the mildly aggressive “50 Shades” fan base. For their consideration, and yours, here are eight actors HuffPost Entertainment would endorse as co-stars opposite Dakota Johnson in the “50 Shades of Grey” movie.

You can read more here, where there’s a list of eight other possible actors who might be getting the part of Christian. One of them is Matt Bomer…at least according to this list. The list is interesting, including an adorable GIF where Alex Pettyfer is pulling down his pants. But I have to say that so far, at least according to that list, it still seems as if Matt Bomer was meant to play that role.

Erotica Author Petition

In what has erupted into a huge backlash of authors and readers aggressively fighting back against the recent decision by large e-book retailers to remove self-published books from their shelves, there’s now a petition directed toward these retailers that has reached over 11,000 signatures as of right now.

Although the majority of my published books are with publishers, I do have a few self-published titles out, including back listed books that were originally released by a publisher that has now shuttered its doors, I’ve had a book taken down, too, and without a viable explanation. At first I thought it was because of gay content, but it goes much deeper.

This all originated with retail e-book sellers wanting to rid their shelves of self-published erotic e-books that contain things like barely-legal, bestiality, and incest, however, in the process thousands of authors who don’t cross the line into taboo erotica and do follow the standard guidelines that most publishers follow with erotica, have been penalized and their books have been banned as a result. In some cases authors with YA titles that aren’t even erotic have been taken down.

The entire mess started with one little article. And then it grew into what I think has been the biggest shitstorm to hit the Internet in a long time. This is what the petition looks like, and you can go here to sign it.

Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon
Michael Serbinis, CEO of KOBO
Leonard Riggio, Founder and executive chairman of Barnesand Noble

Drop the clause of removing Erotica and self-published Indie authors.
[Your name]

To read more about this, check out this article. It gives the shortest and most comprehensive explanation I’ve read so far. Most large media outlets are not reporting the story correctly and they are making it look as if all the books and all the authors are being taken down because they’ve written dinoporn…or something like that. And this is not the case. What’s really happening is that in order to remove the “taboo” books and authors, the large retailers have been using search engines and tag words. So if a book title or blurb even has the word “boy” or “daddy” in it, the book is taken down without review. So if you’re thinking about writing a children’s book and titling it “Daddy’s Little Girl,” you’d better rethink that title. It could wind up in the new slush pile of self-pubbed authors with “Daddy’s Naughty Little Girl.”

And, Kobo is now sending out e-mails. I’ve posted about Kobo before, and how many indie authors aren’t making much money with them.

From my inbox:

To our Kobo Writing Life and self-publishing partners:

 As you may be aware, there has been a significant amount of negative media attention in the UK regarding offensive material that became available across a number of eBook platforms. Kobo was included in the reports from media and we are taking immediate action to resolve an issue that is the direct result of a select few authors and publishers violating Kobo’s content policies.

 In order to address the situation Kobo is taking the following steps:

1.We are removing titles in question from the Kobo platform.

2.We are quarantining and reviewing titles to ensure that compliance to our policies is met by all authors and publishers. We will ensure that content meeting the policy is made available online as soon as possible.

3.We are reviewing our policies and procedures to implement safeguards that will ensure this situation does not happen in the future.

 We are working hard to get back to business as usual, as quickly as possible. We appreciate your patience and understanding in this matter.

 Our goal at Kobo is not to censor material; we support freedom of expression. Further, we want to protect the reputation of self-publishing as a whole. You have our promise that we will do all we can to ensure the exceptions that have caused this current situation will not have a lasting effect on what is an exciting new channel that connects Readers to a wealth of books.


 Mark Lefebvre

Director, Kobo Writing Life

Greg Louganis Gets Married

This is significant to me because I was a child when Greg Louganis was at the height of his career and I feel as if I grew up watching his life unfold…and relating to him as a gay man the entire time.

Louganis and paralegal Chaillot wed on Oct. 12 in Malibu in front of 160 guests, according to People magazine. Their “I Dos” came little more than one year after the two met on

“It has been an incredible journey,” Louganis told the magazine. “I feel like we’ve been through a lifetime in a very short time.”

The 53-year-old took to Twitter to discuss the evening.

I keep telling my brother in New York he should try out to see what happens, but it falls on deaf ears.

You can read more here.

Photo attribution

Matt Bomer In Time; Foot Cream Kills HIV; Paid Reviews

Matt Bomer In Time

For those who’ve been disheartened by Matt Bomer not getting the part of Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey, I recently came across the film, In Time, where Bomer plays an interesting character that basically sets the stage for the rest of the film.

It is the year 2169 and humanity had been genetically engineered to be born with a digital clock, bearing a year’s worth of time, on their forearm. At the age of 25 a person stops aging, but their clock begins counting down; when it reaches zero, that person “times out” and dies. Time has been turned into the universal currency; one can give time for products or services, as well as transfer it to others. The country is divided into time zones based on the wealth of its population. The film focuses on two time zones: Dayton is poor, with a populace that has learned indifference to the timed-out bodies on its streets; and New Greenwich, the wealthiest zone where inhabitants enjoy the benefits of their immortality and wealth, but are constantly surrounded by bodyguards and spend their time worried about accidental death.

You can read more here at Wiki.

I’m not the biggest fan of this genre, however, this film is excellent. The concept will make you stop and think about how you’ve always thought about time. And Bomer is great as always. His part is small, but you can’t stop thinking about what he did throughout the entire film. Of course Justin Timberlake holds his own, too. I feel a little guilty, as if I’m betraying the gay guy here, because I do like Matt Bomer. But Timberlake is the man of which all dreams are made.

Foot Cream Kills HIV

Whenever I see something like this I like to post about it because it creates a continued sense of hope that one day, hopefully in our lifetimes, there will be an end to HIV/AIDS. Now there’s evidence that a common foot cream might be beneficial to those with HIV.

In a study performed at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, not only does the drug Ciclopirox completely eradicate infectious HIV from cell cultures, but unlike today’s most cutting-edge antiviral treatments, the virus doesn’t bounce back when the drug is withheld. This means it may not require a lifetime of use to keep HIV at bay.

If this is accurate, it’s highly significant for anyone who is HIV positive and is now taking HIV meds. HIV is looked upon as a chronic illness, and in order to keep the virus at bay expensive drugs that have multiple side effects have to be taken daily. It’s a very difficult lifestyle that requires constant blood work and monitoring, not to mention discipline. And if they can come up with something to keep the virus at bay millions of lives will be vastly improved.

Paid Reviews

There are some very strong opinions on the web about authors paying for book reviews. And a few things I didn’t know…like google can penalize you if you get caught buying reviews for your books or any product you’re hocking to the public. This article covers all businesses on the web that depend on reviews. But from what I hear, it includes authors, too.

Google states that they have methods in place to automatically remove reviews that they believe may have violated their guidelines. They also pre-apologize because they know they might incorrectly remove some perfectly valid reviews.

I can just hear the free speech zealots harping on that one.

In this next article the blogger is adamant about authors who pay for reviews. Adamant to the point of stating it as bluntly as possible so there’s no misunderstanding.

Paying for reviews is stupid from a marketing perspective. As an author the only feedback you should care about is honest feedback. And you’ll never know if you’re getting honest feedback when you pay for that feedback. Even if you don’t insist on a positive review, not all reviewers going to tell you what they really think. They’re too afraid of how you’ll react or they’re afraid others won’t pay them for the same. There are ethical paid reviewers out there. But you’d be hard-pressed to tell the difference. And you can’t improve your product or your marketing strategy based on a bunch of bullshit.

I actually posted about this dude in August 2012. He started out with the best of intentions trying to market and promote authors. However, he found out there’s an easier way to make a buck.

Suddenly it hit him. Instead of trying to cajole others to review a client’s work, why not cut out the middleman and write the review himself? Then it would say exactly what the client wanted — that it was a terrific book. A shattering novel. A classic memoir. Will change your life. Lyrical and gripping, Stunning and compelling. Or words to that effect.

In the fall of 2010, Mr. Rutherford started a Web site, At first, he advertised that he would review a book for $99. But some clients wanted a chorus proclaiming their excellence. So, for $499, Mr. Rutherford would do 20 online reviews. A few people needed a whole orchestra. For $999, he would do 50.
I don’t see the paid for book review issue disappearing. It’s part of our culture now, and unfortunately retail web sites promote the behavior. I just wish they would be a little more discreet about it, is all. I’ve discussed this with other authors I know in private and we all agree that when you see a book being released by a relatively unknown author and the very next day after the release that same relatively unknown author has over fifty five star reviews on Amazon something’s rotten in Denmark and it’s not the cheese. And no matter how many times they swear on their moms, dads, kids, and dead dogs, that they aren’t buying reviews, once the red flag is up there’s no turning back.
I’d like to see the FTC getting more involved.  

Fifty Shades Matt Bomer Uproar; Anthony Weiner Shouting Match;

Fifty Shades Casting Uproar

Ever since the names of the actors who will play the lead roles in the film version of bestselling novel, Fifty Shades of Grey, were announced, the webz have gone berserk with opinions and comments. For months I’ve been posting about how I would have liked to see Matt Bomer play Christian. Evidently, more than a few people agree with me.

Outraged “Fifty Shades of Grey” fans have taken fantasy casting to the next level.

More than 22,000 people would rather see “White Collar” star Matt Bomer and “Gilmore Girls” favorite Alexis Bledel play Christian Grey and Anastasia Steele when the movie gets down and dirty on screen next August – instead of the recently chosen Charlie Hunnam and Dakota Johnson.

A petition created by an anonymous fanatic swelled to thousands of cosigners in a matter of hours, with demands that the production team bringing the steamy novel to life rethink their casting decisions.

This is how the people from the film have responded to the outrage.

Producer Brunetti further explained the process in which they made their final casting decision. “There is a lot that goes into casting that isn’t just looks. Talent, availability, their desire to do it, chemistry with other actor, etc,” he tweeted Monday. “So if your favorite wasn’t cast, then it is most likely due to something on that list. Keep that in mind while hating and keep perspective.” He later added, “Thx to all the fans of @E_L_James FSOG for their overwhelming support of the casting choices. @MichaelDe_Luca &I can’t wait to start filming.”

With all that said, taking the comments of the producer into consideration, I’m sure a lot of thought went into this casting decision. But this is a tough one for me because I had other reasons why I wanted to see Matt Bomer play the lead. It would have been more interesting to see Matt Bomer play a role like this because he’s gay, and because straight actors have been playing gay roles since the beginning of time.

No one thought twice about two straight actors playing the lead roles in Brokeback Mountain (except gay men). And I do wonder about whether or not Bomer’s being gay had anything to do with him being passed over for the part. If nothing else, it would have shown the world that a gay actor can play a straight role just as well as a straight actor can play a gay role. And, Matt Bomer could have had fun during the promos just like Matt Damon did when he joked around about kissing a man in Behind the Candelabra. Matt Bomer could have joked around the same way about kissing a woman…in that funny-hahah slap your knee and wink way Matt Damon did it so we would all know he’s a good sport because he kissed a man. I posted about that here.

It’s interesting. So they couldn’t find one single gay actor to play the part of Liberace’s lover? I know. I’m supposed to be open about that and all actors should play be able to play any role regardless of their sexual orientation. It’s just that I don’t see anyone breaking any doors down to offer Jeffery Self…or other openly gay actors…any lead roles in feature films. That idiot Brett Easton Ellis didn’t think Matt Bomer could play Christian in 50 Shades.

As a side note, I also saw a prediction yesterday on a book blog where the snarky reviewer didn’t think the film version of Fifty Shades of Grey would do well at the box office. I think she’s wrong, once again, and I think it’s going to do as well as the book. It might not break box office records, but I do think as many people who were curious about the book will be just as curious about the film. If I’m wrong, I’ll gladly admit it. If I’m not, I’ll be very obnoxious about it.

Anthony Weiner Shouting Match

I think everyone knows by now that Anthony Weiner is running for Mayor of New York, and that Anthony Weiner has sex scandal issues (for lack of a better way to phrase that). I’ve posted about it before, and I don’t think I need to do that again here.

But what I find most interesting is that in spite of his critics, and in spite of the sex scandal, Weiner continues to move forward in the race for mayor, and he’s not doing it quietly. He’s not hiding; he’s not taking any shit from anyone, which in a way, even if you don’t like what he did with the sex scandal, is both interesting and refreshing. I write erotica, and I can honestly say that I have never in my life sexted anyone. But a lot of people do that nowadays. And I say it’s refreshing to see that Weiner isn’t backing down, because all my life all I’ve ever seen are American politicians, on all sides, lie, cheat, bullshit us, and fake it all the way.

If you think that Anthony Weiner is the only politician out there with a sex scandal, think again. The others just didn’t get caught. In fact, I don’t think there is anyone more ruthless than a politician, male of female, gay or straight. At least Weiner is open and honest about it. And his lack of discretion has created a firestorm everywhere because we aren’t used to seeing that kind of blunt honesty. In fact, from the responses I’ve seen on comment threads we want our politicians to lie to us and tell us what we want to hear instead of what we should hear.

In any event, this is what recently took place with Weiner. It was a heated exchange between Weiner and a voter. There’s also a video of this at the link.

“You wait until I walk out to say anything? That’s courage. That’s courage,” Weiner says at the start of the video, yelling into the business he’s seen leaving.

After he’s approached by the man from inside the business, Weiner gets defensive.

“What rabbi taught you you’re my judge?” Weiner repeatedly says to the man, who is Jewish.

“You’re fine,” the man says. “You talk to God and work out your problems, but stay out of the public eye.”

“Go visit with your rabbi,” Weiner says during the exchange that follows.

“Your ignorance is being shown to the entire world,” Weiner continues.

I have a tendency to always fight for the underdog, which is part of the reason why I can’t help admiring the way Weiner keeps bouncing back. Just once I’d like to see a few other politicians who weren’t involved in sex scandals do the same thing. Just once show us a little bit of honesty instead of the canned responses, the fake smiles, and the tired jargon they get from sleazy PR people.

Matt Bomer Normal Heart; AIDS Today; Zimmerman Trial

Matt Bomer Normal Heart

When I posted about Matt Bomer earlier this year doing the film version of the stage play, The Normal Heart, I made a point of following the story.

From January 5th

Matt Bomer is scheduled to star in Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart” on HBO. It’s going to be directed by Ryan Murphy (Glee), and will also star Julia Roberts and Mark Ruffalo.

In this case, I have a feeling it’s going to be authentic with Murphy as the director. He tends to get a bit too political sometimes, but in this case, with this film, I don’t think it’s possible to get too political…or rant and scream too much about. If that is what he intends to do.

Although I was only a kid at the time, I can still remember how AIDS was ignored back then. The President of the United States, Ronald Reagan, never used the term once while he was in office…as I recall personally. There was panic, protests, and emotional events that helped define the next generation of gay men. Things were never the same again.

I went on to write another post about this topic, here.

Since I wrote those posts, filming for The Normal Heart began on July 3, in New York. And it is set to air on TV in 2014. I think the film is going to be significant for several reasons, one of which is I’ve seen a trend where we are finally starting to talk about AIDS openly, and what it was like during the height of the AIDS crisis. Just this year, I posted a rave review of John Irving’s novel, In One Person, because I thought it went into the most detailed account I’ve ever read in fiction about what it was really like back then…including the actual medical issues people with AIDS had. And recently, something I didn’t expect happened, Irving won a Lambda Award for In One Person.

You can read more here about Bomer and The Normal Heart. The cast also includes Taylor Kitsch, Mark Ruffalo, and Julia Roberts. And, it’s being directed by Ryan Murphy of Glee.

From Wiki:

The Normal Heart is a largely autobiographical play by Larry Kramer. It focuses on the rise of the HIVAIDS crisis in New York City between 1981 and 1984, as seen through the eyes of writer/activist Ned Weeks, the gay Jewish-American founder of a prominent HIV advocacy group. Ned prefers loud public confrontations to the calmer, more private strategies favored by his associates, friends, and closeted lover Felix Turner, none of whom is prepared to throw himself into the media spotlight. Their differences of opinion lead to frequent arguments that threaten to undermine their mutual goal.

As a side note, during the time The Normal Heart was written we viewed the world and the AIDS virus very differently than we do today. I’m always glad to see historical things like this being approached by producers and publishers because we should never forget. But I’d also like to see how people are living with HIV/AIDS today. It’s not the horror story that we’ve seen in the past. And I find that so many people who are unfamiliar with HIV/AIDS don’t get all the information they should be getting. So while I am looking forward to this film version of The Normal Heart, I’m not so sure about what it’s going to do to help break the stigma for people who are living “normal heart” lives today with HIV/AIDS. It’s actually a topic I plan to tackle eventually, because I think we need to know more about it. And also because I have been in those proverbial trenches personally.

AIDS Today

In a totally unrelated article, new ground is being broken daily for people with HIV. And many are working hard to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS all around the world.

Doctors could save three million more lives worldwide by 2025 if they offer AIDS drugs to people with HIV much sooner after they test positive for the virus, the World Health Organisation said on Sunday.

While better access to cheap generic AIDS drugs means many more people are now getting treatment, health workers, particularly in poor countries with limited health budgets, currently tend to wait until the infection has progressed.

What this basically means is that people who are HIV positive can get drugs and the virus can actually remain virtually undetected if they take the drugs regularly. I’m familiar with this personally because of a friend who has HIV and I’ve listened in on his medical consultations at the University of Pennsylvania. I’ve also learned that getting these drugs out there to people is highly important, and getting them to take the drugs regularly is even more important. Another issue is that the drugs are not always affordable, but there are programs, too.

I think this is a fascinating article, and simple to understand for those like me who are not medical experts. Just this alone made me stop and think twice:

“With nearly 10 million people now on antiretroviral therapy, we see that such prospects – unthinkable just a few years ago – can now fuel the momentum needed to push the HIV epidemic into irreversible decline,” she said in a statement.

You can read more here.

Zimmerman Trial

I’ve been following the Zimmerman trial on Anderson Cooper 360 partly because attorney Danny Cevallos is local to Philadelphia and he’s on the AC 360 panel, and partly because I have found it so hard to get real information about the entire case…anywhere. Almost everything seems to be biased in one direction or the other.

This is a highly charged issue for many, and in following AC 360 this past week I’ve learned many facts about the case (on both ends) I didn’t know from what I’d read in articles and blog posts that can’t seem to remain objective. In fact, the very first time I learned of the tragic death of Trayvon Martin, I read about it on a publishing blog by literary Agent Janet Reid, here.

But there seem to be so many facts about this case that have been coming out in the trial since I read Ms. Reid’s highly emotional post, I’m in shock each time I hear something different. How this will turn out or what the verdict will be is not something I can predict. But I do think that it’s going to set new standards for other cases. Unfortunately, I’m not so sure it’s going to change the violence we are all experiencing in the US. And I don’t think violence is a racial issue. Violence in the US is something we are all dealing with nowadays.

You can read more here at AC 360. And I did search this link out with care. I found other links that were geared toward the defense, with highly biased statements…just as the post written by Janet Reid last year was highly biased in the opposite direction without much merit or substance. As a small blogger, I take the written word very seriously. My goal is to learn the unbiased facts with cases like this, and to base my decisions about the content of a blog post on facts. If I don’t know them I don’t post about them, which is why I haven’t posted about the Zimmerman trial before. And even though I’m just a small blogger with a few thousand hits a day, I think I would be doing readers a huge disservice if I didn’t do this.

Mean Matt Bomer Comments and Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia; Chris Pine on Women

Mean Matt Bomer Comments and Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia
This is the first post I’ve done about Matt Bomer playing the lead in the film version of Fifty Shades of Grey in a while. Matt Bomer is a very talented young actor who I’ve seen in a variety of roles. And while I would love to see him in Fifty Shades because I think he’d be perfect, not everyone agrees.
“Only problem for me is Bomer is gay and knowing that, not that I have anything against it, is that it’s a turn off for me,” one fan wrote. “I would know the whole time he’s not really ‘in the mood.’ Sorry if that sounds mean, it’s just about suspension of disbelief. I’m sure many fans who don’t know this detail would find him perfect.”
This comes from a “fan.” I think this fan is an idiot. Because if he/she knew even a hint about Hollywood he/she would understand that most of the actors he/she has been watching all his or her life are gay…they just never told you about it. Aside from that, straight men have been playing gay roles for a long time and no one ever said they were too straight.
So if Bomer does get the part, I think it’s going to be the challenge of his life to show idiots like the fan above that he’s capable of doing it…which most people seem to think he is. This kind of attitude is the reason why so many gay men don’t come out of the closet.
In spite of this “fan’s” comment, Matt Bomer is still the biggest contender for the role.
To read more vituperative (can’t give up that word for anything) comments about being openly gay and being an actor, you can check out this link. Some of these vicious comments are the reason why so many bloggers are doing the Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia this week. This reaction to Matt Bomer playing the lead in Fifty Shades is proof homophobia exists in even the most subtle forms today. So if you’re not familiar with the Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia, check out the link above.
Chris Pine on Women 

These are the little pop culture things I find interesting all the time: like what Chris Pine wants in a woman. Pop culture and technology usually play big parts in my novels and short stories, and these little pieces of information often help inspire me with subplots and smaller scenes.

In this case it’s actually more about the way Chris Pine is wearing his beard in the photo, not about his love life. I recently wrote a character with a beard like this and it helps for me to study these photos when I’m describing that character. I would love to show the photo, but I’m not sure about copyrights so you’ll have to check out the link. It’s worth the effort. It’s a great beard and I wish I could grow one like it. The problem is after around 35 years old beards start to turn gray and I don’t have the patience or time to keep up with getting rid of that gray.

In any event, here’s what Chris Pine is looking for in a woman.

“I think anything that any normal man would be looking for: intelligence, beauty and a sense of humor. . . You have to be able to carry a conversation after the initial attraction kind of dies down,” he said.
I couldn’t agree more.

E-Book Sales Rise 134%; Magic Mike 2 Matt Bomer; Parents Support Libraries; Colorado Civil Unions

Half the time I’m never certain what to believe anymore when it comes to e-book sales in a general sense, but according to the following article the rise in e-book sales seems to be 134% by 2012. This comes from the Publishers Association Yearbook, 2012.

Digital formats (encompassing ebooks, audiobooks downloads and online subscriptions) accounted for 12% of the total invoiced value of sales of books in 2012, with this share rising from 8% in 2011, and from 5% in 2010.  Other notable statistics from the PA Yearbook 2012 include an increase of 4% for the home physical sales of children’s books, up to £233 million, while home physical sales of school books saw a rise of 6%, to £172 million. Total physical sales of fiction books have also grown, by 3% in 2012, leading to sales of £502 million. Physical and digital sales of fiction books combined have risen by 21% to £674 million, and digital sales of non-fiction/reference books have grown by 95% to £42 million.

With all this talk about the death of the American author, and how e-books are nothing more than a passing trend, you have to wonder what motivates some people to put anything in print. On the other hand, e-books seem to have this unusual effect on some people, where they sometimes feel the need to lay down and die for their beloved print books. For me it’s always been about the content, not the physical tangible item. There’s no way in hell I’d ever go back to reading print books.

You can read more here, where they get into what’s happening with digital sales in the UK.

Parents Support Libraries

According to a new study, 94% of parents want to see libraries stick around.

The report also highlighted how many lower income parents would be “very likely” to use library resources like “classes on how to download library e-books” (44 percent), “e-readers already loaded with library content” (40 percent), or a “digital media lab” (40 percent).

There’s more, here. I don’t even have kids and I would support anything library oriented. I used to live at the library, well after I’d graduated from college, too. I checked out some of the best books I’ve ever read, from all of Anne Rivers Siddens novels, to Anne Tyler’s. I do think that libraries need to change a little. I’d like to see them become more like community centers where people can gain access to books, media information, and use technical devices they may or may not have at home.

Magic Mike 2; Matt Bomer

According to this next article, there’s serious talk of a second version of the film, Magic Mike. This second installment will most likely be a prequel because Mike retired at the end of the first film. This is one of the things I love about doing a series of any kind. You get that freedom to make it up as you go along.

“We actually just had a meeting about it the other day. It’s getting pretty far along,” Soderbergh told Pride Source about the sequel. The new film will likely be written, once again, by Reid Carolin, with input from star Channing Tatum.

I didn’t see anything mentioned about Matt Bomer, though. For those who might not know, he was in the first film…check out photos here.

But I do find Channing Tatum very interesting. I’ve seen photos of him in various places that show him in different ways. And most of the time he’s not the thin god we all think he is. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing. He’s been more than attractive in every photo I’ve seen of him, with or without the extra weight. I just find it interesting that he has that ability, and that discipline, to sculpt his body in such a way that he can transform from one character to another. I’ve never been able to do that. And I’ve had to watch every single morsel of food I’ve put into my mouth to maintain a 32 inch waist all my life. One ice cream sundae and it’s all over for me.  So I just stay away from anything like that…and run five miles a day.

Colorado Now Has Civil Unions

It’s not marriage, but I’m thrilled to see that Colorado legalized civil unions last night with a midnight ceremony.

The first gay couple granted a civil union in Colorado said their vows before hundreds of people early Wednesday morning at a downtown Denver municipal building where couples and members of the public gathered.

The new law legalizing civil unions took effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, and both Denver and Boulder began issuing licenses immediately.

Another step big forward for LGBT people, with a whole lot to go yet. Because as wonderful as this is for gay couples in Colorado on many levels, and I truly do mean that, it’s not going to help them in a federal level when it comes to things like inheritance taxes. This is something all gay couples need to discuss right now, at the moment, just in case something happens to either one of you.

FS Parody Video with Matt Bomer; Vagina: The New Normal; New Adult Genre

I’ve been a fan of Matt Bomer for a long time. I’ve also been following all the articles about him playing the lead in the film adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey with newly conflicted emotions. On the one hand, I think he might be too good for it. On the other, I think it’s time *openly* gay actors started playing straight male parts just as straight actors have been playing gay male parts in films like that Busted Back Mountain.

And speaking of parody like Busted Back Mountain, here’s a great video parody of Matt Bomer starring in what might be a future trailer from the upcoming Fifty Shades of Grey movie. Keep in mind, I said parody. It’s not real.

You can get there from here.

Vagina: The New Normal

I’ve written a lot of posts about how I’ve been on the fence about The New Normal. And I’ve finally come to the conclusion that I might not love everything about it, but I do love most of it. So I’ve been watching faithfully each week as they prepare for the new baby. Last week was particularly interesting because Bryan was asked to get more involved with the birth, and he decided to go to these holistic birthing classes to find out what they were like. That alone was parody at its best. Ultimately, they all wound up in the back of a Range Rover on the side of the freeway helping one of the women in the birthing class give birth to her child. And one of the things Bryan mentioned was that he’d never seen vagina before, and he didn’t seem too excited about seeing it at that particular time.

Of course I think they handled it well because once the miracle of birth took place Bryan forgot all about his issue with vagina and he discovered there’s a lot more to birth than he’d realized, mostly in a deep emotional way. And he forgot all about his phobia…for the time being anyway.

But Bryan’s issue I’m talking about with vagina is interesting. I’ve never seen one. I’m not joking about that. I have never seen a real vagina. Why would I see one? There’s never been a need for me to explore vagina up close and personal and I’ve managed to live a full life without ever seeing one up close. That is by no means a reflection on how I feel about women, not in the least. I’m usually the first to stand up and defend women in all cases involving equality. I was seriously disappointed/devastated when Hillary Clinton did not get the nomination in 2008 after I’d helped campaign for her. So disappointed I’ve never embraced our current President 100% and I’ve backed away from anything political since then. And as a gay man I can even relate to women because I know all too well what it’s like to live in a world dominated by straight men. Trust me, gay men don’t have it much easier than women when straight men are involved. We often even get the same sexual harassment. I think that’s changing. I think it will continue to change. But we do, indeed, still live in a world that straight men rule.

Although I’ve actually never written any snarky vagina jokes or scenes in any of my books because I’ve always been cautious about insulting women with vagina jokes (I know it’s a sensitive issue), I have seen it and heard it all my life from other gay men. So those who read gay fiction, or M&M romance, take into consideration that when some gay men write about vagina, like it was written in the most recent episode of The New Normal, they are not attacking women and not degrading women. They are only reacting to a normal instinct we all share as gay men with regard to vagina itself in a way that’s meant to be humorous. It’s camp; it’s sometimes snark. But it’s never meant to denigrate women in a serious or harmful way. I don’t think I know one gay man that would not stand behind women’s rights. So when you read posts like this one below, where someone doesn’t understand the mindset with which gay men think, take it with a grain of salt. She also lacks a sense of humor, too.

Some examples: In the pilot of The New Normal, Nana (Ellen Barkin), whose granddaughter Goldie (Georgia King) will go on to serve as a surrogate for David (Justin Bartha) and Bryan (Andrew Rannells), insists of a lesbian couple with a baby that, “those are ugly men.” True, Nana is not very p.c., but while The New Normal pushes back against many of her racist and homophobic ideas, lesbian-bashing sticks around into the next episode. In that half-hour Bryan, who in the pilot explained, “I faint at the sight of vagina. They’re like tarantula faces,” says that he and David have to have one last wild night on the town “before we fully morph into an old lesbian couple, minus the frowns and the gingerbread man bodies.” I agree, I suppose, with my colleague June Thomas, that these might be the kinds of comments that gay men make when lesbians aren’t around. But I don’t actually think they’re funny or insightful, and the stereotypes here were ancient when Alison Bechdel broke them down in her decades-old Dykes to Watch Out For comic strips.

I have many lesbian friends. Two of which I’ve talked about here on this blog many times before, whom I happen to consider best friends. They are both true feminists, one is beautiful and feminine and breaks all the stereotypes, the other is more down to earth and aggressive. It’s really the perfect balance. Both are college graduates, both have professional careers, and both are brilliant and beautiful. When I’m with them, we joke around about things like this all the time. It’s not just something gay men do when they are all alone. It’s something good friends do when they are alone. My lesbian friends make penis jokes and growl in horror at the thought of penis, and I laugh at each joke and I don’t take offense to it. So a clever writer could take a TV show like The New Normal and turn it completely around with two lesbian main characters who make penis jokes. It’s all relative.

The point I’m trying to make is lighten up a little. It’s not mean to hurt. It’s only meant to be funny, just like the sculpture Marie Barone made in an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond in the photo above.

New Adult Genre

I have been posting about the new adult genre for a couple of years now. I remember when the concept first came out and so many literary agents blogged about how it would never be taken seriously. I remember how so many others laughed at it and just dismissed it completely.

And guess what? They were all wrong. Not only is new adult becoming a valid genre, it’s gaining in popularity all over the place and new adult books are doing well.

I’ve been incorporating new adult characters into my own gay erotic books for a while, and I haven’t been doing this by accident. When I think of new adult, I think of people between the ages of eighteen and thirty years old who are just beginning to make their way into the real world and build their lives. And nowadays that can be an interesting experience, considering student loans, lack of jobs, changing sexual attitudes, and a multitude of other things I could mention that would turn this post into something else. And because a huge part of life for new adults is sex, I’ve been writing about it in books I’ve written like “The Computer Tutor.” In my upcoming book with Riverdale, “Fangsters,” I’ve even written the main vampire characters as new adult, but in this case they are new adult vampires trying to figure out how to get established on their own terms…in spite of older vampires. I know that sounds a little far-fetched, but the concept of new adult is still there in the storyline, and the vampires do have human friends who are also real life new adult characters.

In any event, here’s an interesting article I found that defines new adult in more detail. It also gets into romance and new adult. I don’t totally agree with everything, but I do agree with most of it.

Enter the New Adult genre. These are the same stories that have always existed about 18-25 year old protagonists, but now they have the label to make them theoretically easier for those college-aged readers to find. Bookstores, especially those online, might create New Adult shelves, as they try to increase the discover-ability of these stories.

Even though there is some speculation on how new adult is being defined, I find it interesting that so many were wrong just a few years ago in the way they dismissed the entire concept. So much for gatekeepers, because this takes publishing to yet another new level. A lot of what we’re seeing with new adult (Anastasia in Fifty Shades) is being defined by small e-presses, small indie presses, and self-pubbed authors who decided to push their own gates open. Of course those who have been making the most profit from it, ironically, seem to be those who dismissed it a few years ago. Some things don’t change.

Why I’ve Been Reading More and More M/M Books; Matt Bomer 50 Shades

The question of whether or not actor, Matt Bomer, will play the lead in the upcoming film adaptation of the E.L. James novel, Fifty Shades of Grey, continues to run rampant. And because I’ve never seen a campaign quite like this one before, where so many are interested in who is going to play the lead in the FSoG film, I can’t help posting about it.

These are fairly recent links, too. In this article, they talk about Matt Bomer and Henry Cavill.

Well there is no doubt that Ian would be a right fit for the role. He’s got the looks and he also proved his charisma on screen. But apart from him, there are other credible actors just as good or even better, like Matt Bomer and Henry Cavill.

I think all would be great in the role, but I’m leaning toward Bomer myself because I like the way he’s always able to create characters and make them so different. It seems to be something that comes from deep down inside a lot of actors don’t do all the time. But then again, all this could be rumor and Matt Bomer might not have anything to do with FSoG…or want anything to do with it. He’s remained silent throughout all this.

The latest news, according to this same article, is that E.L. James is leaning toward Ian Somerhalder. I actually find this interesting, too. If these articles I’ve been reading are accurate, it’s one of the few times I’ve noticed an author have this much control over the film adaptation. In most cases, once the film rights are sold you don’t hear about much author participation in the actual making of the film…if ever. The few times I do remember reading things of this nature happened when authors didn’t like something about the film adaptation. Evidently, Ms. James has maintained her control and I applaud her and her agent for that.

Check out the rest of the article, where you will find other links if you don’t know much about Cavill or the others who are up for the role. And here’s a link to another article on the same topic.

Why I’ve Been Reading More and More M/M Books

Over the weekend I read two different posts that talked about how unhappy they are with m/m books, and I can’t hide the fact that I was stunned because I’ve been experiencing the exact opposite recently. I stopped commenting on blog posts like these a long time ago. I write my own posts now, I average a very humble 1,000 hits a day that come mostly from random google searches, and that’s how I maintain control…and online balance.

One of the main reasons why it took me so long to read The Casual Vacancy was because I’ve been reading so many fantastic m/m books well into the early hours of the morning. I don’t always review these books because it would take too much time and I don’t like to single out other authors too much in the m/m genre…good or bad. But I don’t have a problem speaking in generalities about what I’ve been reading and how I’ve been astounded at the way m/m books just seem to be getting better and better all the time.

The biggest problem for me is there are so many excellent m/m books out there I often can’t figure out which one to choose. I just finished one written by a fairly new author that had me laughing through the entire book.

I’m loving the self-pubbed m/m books and the books released by small m/m e-publishers, and I enjoy seeing how well-edited they are. In fact, I often hate to get into editing comments about books. After working in publishing for many LGBT presses as both author and editor for twenty years I’ve come across more editors with different styles than I can even count. So when I say I like the way the books are being edited now, please take into consideration this is me offering a general opinion. There is no correct way or incorrect way to edit books. It’s all subjective, and most people with even the smallest amount of publishing experience know this.

I’ve enjoyed watching smaller m/m presses grow and mature into businesses that care about their readers and work hard to get out good product. It must be a great time in publishing for copyeditors, too. Because all the books I’ve read have been so tightly copyedited I rarely see the same mistakes I saw five or ten years ago. I also think this has a lot to do with formatting as well.

As a rule, I don’t believe there are any new plots left to write about. I think it’s all been done before and it comes down to the way an author pulls it off. The few m/m books I didn’t enjoy this year seemed to be trying too hard to create a plot that had never been done before, thus rendering it more boring than entertaining. The odds of me loving a m/m book about gay men in polka bands are slim…very slim, indeed. But in a broad sense, I don’t think I could ever read too many well adapted versions of the Cinderella story. Or the Pygmalion story.

Another thing I’ve noticed in more recent m/m books is that authors are adding more female characters who are strong and break a lot of the old stereotypes. I’m not sure this is on purpose either. As the m/m genre evolves, and as gay men evolve in society, that disconnect to the mainstream is getting smaller and smaller. I think we’ll be seeing more straight male characters in m/m books, too. In my own current work in progress, the only character in the book my gay main character actually respects is his strong female assistant. And I wanted her to be both strong and wise.

The two articles I read this weekend that bashed m/m books seemed to be missing one important point. And I think that’s because both of these articles come from an online book reviewer POV. When authors and publishers brainstorm about new books and projects, we don’t think about whether or not online book reviewers are going to like the books or not. We hope they do, but it’s not the main focus. Actually, it never even comes up in conversation. Our main focus is on whether or not the *readers* are going to like the books.

And by readers I’m talking about the gay Amish guy in the closet who has access to e-books and reads them in hidden places so no one will find out. I’m talking about the wonderful woman who had a stroke, was forced out on disability in her late forties, and loves to read m/m romance. I’m talking about the younger gay men who are just beginning to figure out who they are and they read m/m romance to gain insight and sometimes even guidance. Or, the woman who reads m/m romance as her guilty pleasure for sheer entertainment value.

I wish I could say our primary focus is to entertain online book reviewers and to cater to their needs and wants, but that wouldn’t be practical. We focus more on the readers who buy books and might never bother to leave a review, we try to think about readers who e-mail us in private asking about the next book in a series, and we worry more about readers who want to read for sheer pleasure, not because they want to analyze it. And the best we can hope for is that once in a while an online reviewer will actually like something.

A good example of this might be the book, Fifty Shades of Grey. Online reviewers did not receive this book well in most cases. However, the reading public evidently saw something online reviewers missed, and they loved it enough to turn it into a block buster hit. The readers spoke.

In other words, it’s all about the reader. It’s always going to be about the reader. And when publishers and authors sit down to brainstorm about new books, we only think about what the reader may or may not want. From what I’ve read in the past year in the m/m genre, I think it shows how much publishers and authors care about their readers.

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