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The impossible choice

Today’s MFRW 52 week challenge asks us to pick between reading, writing, and living.

Reading allows you to immerse yourself in a world. The “real” world falls away and you are sucked into a brand new world. If the book is written in the first person, all you read is I, I, I and it’s impossible not to feel like it’s about you. But even in the third person, you feel like the spy, sneaking into other people’s lives. Seeing their thoughts, knowing their dreams, and in the case of the romance reader–seeing the couple come together despite challenges and obstacles.

Writing allows you to play God. You decide what each character is like, you give them dreams and obstacles, and you create the world in which they live. Sometimes characters hijack your plans, but that doesn’t make it less fun. In fact, some of the most interesting content is generated when characters take over. It can be emotionally taxing though because, even more than when you read, you feel what the characters are feeling. Delilah broke down sobbing when she wrote the fight between Meg and RJ in Capturing the Moment.

And then there is real life. Let’s be real for a moment–real life can be fucking hard. Sometimes it’s awful. Sometimes we just need an escape.

But real life can be just as beautiful as the worlds you escape to. Doing Snapchat at a restaurant to keep a child happy is silly, but it’s a memory. Seeing a movie. Hugging a loved one. There are simple joys like your favorite song on the radio. Real life is hard, but it’s also beautiful as well.

All three share a common thing–they introduce you to new things. Why choose?

Public Reading

A few months ago I was incredibly flattered to be asked to share my work at “Kink Dot: An Evening of Alternative Queer Erotica” here in Singapore.

I’m reading from my story “Love is a Virus,” which was first published in Coming Together: Among the Stars, edited by Lynn Townsend. Partially this is because I’ve not published nearly as much m/m or f/f fiction as I’d like to, and partially because my favorite kink is to play with power dynamics.  It’s a theme I’ve visited a number of times in my work (published and that which is under contract) including boss/employee, teacher/student, Doctor/Patient. Without giving too much away about Love is a Virus, I also really enjoy establishing and then subverting a power dynamic.

I love a good beating, but the interplay of power turns me on like nothing else…

For the next week, to celebrate my first public reading, enjoy Love is a Virus for free.