Hello everyone – Welcome to the first Queer Romance Month (QRM) Round Up of 2015.
I hope you are all looking out for the QRM badges and banners appearing on participating blog sites, author’s pages and social media. There is a plethora of talent writing for QRM this year. Click here, or on the banner, or Prism’s QRM badge to get straight to the site.
Here on Prism, each Sunday, we will be talking about our favourite posts of the preceding week. Most Sundays, our very own Ulysses Dietz will join me and throughout the month, some special guests will stop by to give us their opinions too. This week’s views follow a bit about QRM…
WHAT IS QUEER ROMANCE MONTH?
Queer Romance Month is a month long celebration of romance across the LGBTQ+ spectrum. Every day in October, we publish three to four posts from a variety of readers, writers, bloggers and other brilliant people. Our contributors come from all corners of Romancelandia, united by our belief that love is love, romance is romance, and sexuality is not a sub-genre.
On the website, we’ll be showcasing essays, think pieces, flash fiction, and other good things inspired by this year’s theme: We All Need Stories. You’ll also find us around the blogosphere all month long, bringing you exclusive interviews, audio clips and video readings from our wonderful contributors.
Why it’s awesome – Because everyone involved in Queer Romance Month is terribly brilliant and sexy. More seriously, it’s a chance to talk about books you love or discover books you’re going to love in an exciting, diverse and enthusiastic community. There’ll be actual, legit, brand new content from a wide range of writers who we hope you’ll already think are fabulous or will decide are fabulous after you read them.
We hope you’ll laugh and cry and think and find something that speaks to you. Also we give away free stuff.
How to get involved You can visit us daily at www.queerromancemonth.com. Subscribe by email or add our RSS to your feed-reader of choice. Err, assuming people still do that. You can also follow us on Twitter at @QueerRomance, which will alert you when new posts go up.
You can also snag one of our gorgeous badges to display on your own site or use temporarily as a Facebook or Twitter icon to show your support of Queer Romance Month. Tweet to us, leave us comments, enter our giveaways – we’re here to share our stories and we love hearing from people.
Ulysses’ Round Up of this first week of QRM:
As a newbie in his QRM world (but not in the LGBT romance world), I didn’t really know what to expect. “We all need stories” seemed a pretty wide-open doorway for a conversation. Mostly, I was struck by the range of type and tone – a teenaged girl’s plea for understanding; a book reviewer (as I am) on listening; two male authors on their own need to write; an actual (brilliant) short story all about the need to embrace a wide world in telling LGBT stories. What a rich, from-the-heart gift for the beginning of Queer Romance Month. Plus, several of the folks who posted echoed experiences from my own life, underscoring the universality of this need for stories. I’m sure my life is pretty different from everyone else’s, and yet each one of these posts plucked at my heartstrings.
Megan Erickson’s tiny story, “Good Bones,” left a vivid mark on my heart. It’s really like a chapter out of a book, but it tells a whole tale and shows how a gifted writer can do a great deal in a small space. She managed to make me care about those two young men very fast. I also have to confess that both Larry Benjamin and Alex Sanchez’s posts resonated particularly with me – as a gay man and a writer myself, there may just be an automatic sympathy when I read what other male writers have to say. I have a longtime crush on Alex Sanchez because of his amazing books (God Box in particular), and Larry Benjamin’s “Unbroken” blew me away because it is so unlike the “typical” LGBT romance. But I’m an older white man with a very privileged background, and I think there’s a need in me to read stories from different perspectives, because that just makes the similarities resonate more strongly.
Tiffany Reisz’s “Toast to Queer Romance” made me laugh. I can’t imagine a more different background than mine, and yet we both stumbled into queer romance through Anne Rice. I still have my first edition, original gold foil dust-jacket copy of “Interview with the Vampire.” Anne Rice inspired me to create my own fictional hero, ‘Desmond Beckwith’, who is in some ways the antithesis of Lestat and Louis. My first novel begins with ‘Desmond’ finishing “Queen of the Damned,” which had just been published when I wrote it. Of course, now I’m spoiled. I can’t read vampire romances that don’t fit into the world I created for myself. But that’s another story.
Reva Dawn’s eloquent post made me squirm a bit. I’ve raised two children with my husband, and I am so conscious of how hard it is to parent teens, and of our possible failures in that regard, that heartfelt words from a real (as opposed to imagined) teenager always hit me and make me remember my own teen years. I’m a guy who likes labels, in this world where younger folk increasingly reject them. I’m a Kinsey 6, 100% gay man who has spent his whole life (40 years so far) with the first person he kissed. I cling to my labels because they were so much a part of discovering who I was. I literally spent my teen years creating labels strong enough that I could embrace them – and came out at 20 ready to conquer the world. So, the whole anti-label movement makes me very anxious.
But I also loved Dahlia Adler’s piece (aside from the fact that we both have a thing for tattooed redheads –LOL) about being open to seeing things in yourself you might not have wanted to see or been able to see. Why DO straight women write about gay men in love; what is that impulse? I loved that she said “honest confusion is very appealing.” I agree with that. Most of the growth in my life has started with confusion, and even at 60 being unsure of things is the one guarantee I have that I won’t become a smug, arrogant old queen.
Catherine Dair’s introductory post reminded us that “all the stories of the rainbow are valid,” and that’s something to hold onto. Honestly, there are plenty of rainbow stories I’m not going to read, because my interests are particular and my emotional needs are very specific. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want a wide range of voices—because I know that there are many people of all ages that yearn to read anything that will touch on their experiences and their pain. The Queer Romance world has done so much for me; does so much for me. The mainstream press really won’t do it for us, so we need to create the stories people need for ourselves.
I really don’t know what’s coming next. But I suspect it’s going to be marvellous, if these first few days are any indication.
Go to Queer Romance Month’s Site for loads of competitions and giveaways
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
|This post may contain affiliate links.
|Prism Book Alliance® assumes no liability for the ownership of photos or content used in guest posts and interviews. The post author assumes all responsibility and liability for this content.|