June has been a busy month! Along with the release of my first published book, Heaven, I have also been excitedly preparing for my first Pride event! If any of you are going to Columbus pride on Sat. June 22nd, stop by our author booth and say hi and grab some free goodies!
Before Heaven was released I posted a few fun and frivolous posts about the fashion and music of the 80’s, so if you are a first-time visitor to my blog go back and check them out–there are some short excerpts from the book posted as well. For the most part Heaven is a light-hearted story about two best friends—Joey and Brian—coming of age and falling in love in the 80’s.
But along with the frivolous flashbacks of the music and fashion from that era in the story, there is also woven throughout some real glimpses of gay life in the 80’s, and I thought those would be some good parts to discuss during Pride week.
For Joey, we get to see him figure out pretty early on that he is not like the other boys who are all into which girls are hot and which ones they can get to first base with, etc. And there are small scenes of how (living in a small Iowa town) he has to hide that he’s gay from the kids at school, etc. who already think he’s a freak.
Brian and Joey, of course could also NEVER go to their prom, it wouldn’t have even been considered in those days. So it is so enlightening to see the hear the story of the teen couple in New York, Brad Taylor and Dylan Meehan, who got voted by their peers as Cutest Couple. They not only got their picture in their yearbook, but they also got to go to their prom together. (a friend sent me this video interview the boys did on their prom night and they are just adorable and inspiring. Sure this kind of thing isn’t happening in every high school in America and there are still way too many kids getting harassed and bullied for being gay—but it’s wonderful to see that some strides have been made in the last twenty-five years.
Now, as much as I love Joey and Brian . . . the two men who ended up stealing my heart were the Uncles. They kept speaking up and sneaking into scenes and being all adorable together. However, they also had an important role to Joey and Brian not just as parental figures, but also as gay men. Joey, especially, turns to them when he begins to realize he is gay.
And throughout the story, we do get to find out a little bit about how life has been for them, trying to live together as a gay couple in the midwest, getting strange looks out in public, etc.
Again, though there are still strides to make, things have thankfully come a long way since the 80’s.
This weekend to celebrate Pride, I am giving away a copy of Heaven! Just leave a comment (and make sure your email is attached) on this post before midnight Sun., June 23 to be entered!