Welcome to January’s Birthday Blog, with a post – or maybe more – a day for your entertainment and fun :).
Today’s guest is PAUL ALAN FAHEY. Please show your appreciation for the post if you enjoy it, and all the author’s links are below for you to take forward. Watch every day for any Rafflecopter giveaways, and don’t forget there’s ALSO a Grand Prize Draw at the end of the month for ONE lucky commenter.
Many thanks for dropping in, and have a great January!
A Writer’s Search for a Safe Harbor
Learning about myself—mainly my sexuality—while growing up in the 1950s and ‘60s wasn’t a picnic, but neither does it call for a pity party. Someone recently asked me if I thought I’d live long enough to see these recent changes in LGBT equality. Thinking back to the socio-political climate of my youth, I answered without giving much thought, “Never.”
Staying safe and out of the public eye has pretty much been the theme of my life as well as my writing. Even when I met my life partner, Bob, in 1976, we still flew pretty much under the radar. Bob worked in construction and couldn’t be out, and I taught both children and adults so popping out of the closet to all and sundry wasn’t an option. Not then.
On the plus side, a wonderful single mom raised me. For my elementary school years, my mom and I drifted up and down the San Francisco Peninsula like gypsies, never staying in one spot long enough to make close friends or any attachments. Our “safe havens” were a series of furnished studio and one-bedroom apartments. I spent most of my free time reading or at the movies on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. When I think of those formative years, it’s the movies I remember most, for good or bad, and how they shaped the person I eventually became.
Exhibit #1: 1959
Suddenly Last Summer
Logline: The only son of wealthy widow Violet Venable dies while on vacation with his cousin Catherine. What the girl saw was so horrible that she went insane; now Mrs. Venable wants Catherine lobotomized to cover up the truth
LEFT: Sebastian, Elizabeth Taylor’s gay cousin, is attacked and then cannibalized by hungry street urchins.
Gay Take away: Never go on vacation to an exotic locale. See what happened to Sebastian?
Exhibit #2: 1961
The Children’s Hour (1961)
Logline: A troublemaking student at a girls’ school accuses two teachers of being lesbians.
LEFT: Audrey pulling away from Shirley after she confesses her “inappropriate” feelings for her colleague.
Gay Take Away: Keep your mouth shut. Look what happened to Shirley MacLaine after she confronted Audrey Hepburn about the love that dare not speak its name: She stepped on a chair and hung herself.
Exhibit #3: 1962
Advise and Consent (1962)
Logline: A Senate investigation into the President’s newly nominated Secretary of State gives light to a secret from the past, a gay relationship, which may not only ruin the candidate, but the President’s character as well.
LEFT: Don Murray fleeing from a gay bar pursued by his past “indiscretion.”
Gay Take away: Stay out of politics. Suicide’s the only way out when you run for office and people discover your deepest, darkest secret. (If I’m remembering correctly this was the first time I heard the word, homosexual uttered in a film.)
At last I had a name for who and what I was. And it wasn’t a good thing. Not in 1962.
After years of therapy and living through the worst of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s, I’ve discovered it’s not easy to divest yourself from the historical aspect of those times. It took a strong and stable relationship and a seismic change in societal attitudes to finally make me feel safe again.
So here are. We’ve come full circle to the theme of my writing: the search for a safe harbor and I’ve found it in my husband and in a large circle of loving and close friends. Happy endings do happen. And not just in the movies. 🙂
~~Paul Alan Fahey~~
Paul is offering a free download of A Deadly Game of Malice and Kindred Spirit, 2 books from his acclaimed Lovers and Liars series to one lucky commenter.
Click on the Rafflecopter link below to enter. All Rafflecopters will be drawn on Jan 31.
Paul Alan Fahey Rafflecopter giveaway
NOTE: Paul is also donating a copy of the Rainbow award-winning The Other Man to the Grand Prize Hamper.
The Other Man is an artistic collaboration by and about gay men and their relationships. If you’ve ever been the other man, had him invade your life, or are just plain curious about this beguiling, unpredictable and dangerous creature, then this anthology of personal essays is for you. Twenty-one of our most acclaimed authors, many Lambda Award winners and finalists, write candidly about either being the other man, suffering the other man or having their relationships tested by infidelity. What they tell us is we must take heart, it does get better and one day our luck is bound to change. We’ll survive the bumps and detours in our relationships and weather the storms, or resolve to move on. Along the way, we’ll hope to meet someone new and simpatico, maybe even our long-awaited soul mate. Life will be good again. Or will it?
Contributors include: Perry Brass, Austin Bunn, Rob Byrnes, Mark Canavera, R.W. Clinger, Lewis DeSimone, Paul Alan Fahey, Wes Hartley, William Henderson, Allen Mack, Jeff Mann, Tom Mendicino, Erik Orrantia, Felice Picano, David Pratt, Glen Retief, Jeffrey Ricker, Rodney Ross, Jason Schneiderman, Philip Dean Walker, and Chuck Willman. Edited by: Paul Alan Fahey.
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this anthology will go to the It Gets Better Project.
It is now also a three-act play. The Other Man–the Play enjoyed a first reading and talkback at Chicago Dramatists, “The Playwright’s Theatre,” whose ongoing mission is to help build the future of American theatre, in its First Draft Series-a program presenting plays in a first draft condition before a group of playwrights and members of the Chicago Dramatist’s Network Playwright group. Chicago dramatists’ resident playwright Ron Hirsen moderated the event. The play is now being shopped around in several locations in the U.S. for possible venues.
Paul Alan Fahey is a writer—of mostly gay fiction—and an editor who resides with his husband, Robert Franks, on the California Central Coast. His projects for 2016 include writing a script based on a famous1955 murder and kidnapping case in the San Francisco Bay Area and editing a nonfiction anthology of personal essays: Equality: What Do You Think About When You Think of Equality.
Follow the month’s posts at your leisure:
Jan 01: RJ Scott on her inspiration for a new series in 2016.
Jan 01: Temple Dragon on giving for free during December.
Jan 02: Chrissy Munder on an author’s passion for paper planners.
Jan 03: Meredith Russell on inspirational cop series.
Jan 04: Becky Black on her five-year anniversary as an author.
Jan 05: Alexa Milne on characters stepping outside their comfort zone.
Jan 06: Sandra Lindsey on her dancing shoes challenge.
Jan 07: Anne Barwell on her WWII trilogy at Dreamspinner Press.
Jan 08: Elin Gregory on reviews – past, present and future.
Jan 09: Eli Easton on mature heroes and our life choices.
Jan 10: Julie Moffett on the geek in us all.
Jan 11: Jaime Samms and the rewards of an online life.
Jan 12: LC Chase on paying kindness forward.
Jan 12: EM Lynley on the recipes that add taste to her books.
Jan 13: Nicki J Markus on falling in love with her characters.
Jan 14: Vicktor Alexander on giving thanks to friends and fans.
Jan 16: Joanna Chambers on the spark of joy from reading and writing romance.
Jan 17: Jordan Castillo Price on esteem-building new year do-overs.
Jan 18: Lillian Francis on deciding on when to come to an end.
Jan 18: Hunter Frost on a Top Ten new anthology.
Jan 19: Lily Harlem on hot fiction and cool drinks.
Jan 19: Liam Livings on how writing is like ski-ing.
Jan 20: JL Merrow on being a boot-aholic.