Monette was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts, and graduated from Phillips Academy in 1963 and Yale University in 1967. Conflicted about his sexual identity, he moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where he taught writing and literature at Milton Academy for a number of years. On September 3, 1974, Monette was introduced to lawyer Roger Horwitz at a party given by Richard Howard in Boston. In Horwitz, Monette had met the "laughing man," and together they brought it off: "And from that moment on the brink of summer's end, no one would ever tell me again that men like me couldn't love." They moved to West Hollywood, a neighbourhood in Los Angeles which has a large population of gay men, in 1978. Monette's most acclaimed book, Borrowed Time, chronicles Horwitz's fight against and eventual death from AIDS in 1986. His 1992 memoir, Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story, tells of his life in the closet before coming out, culminating with his meeting Horwitz in 1974.Becoming a Man won the 1992 National Book Award in the nonfiction category. Monette also wrote the novelizations of the 1988 film Midnight Run, the 1979 film Nosferatu the Vampyre, the 1987 film Predator and 1983 film Scarface.
Monette's last years, before his own AIDS-related death, are chronicled in the film named after him, Paul Monette: On the Brink of Summer's End by Monte Bramer and Lesli Klainberg. By the end of his life, Monette had healed most of his psychic wounds, but his rage persisted. Monette died in Los Angeles, California, where he lived with his partner of five years, Winston Wilde. Monette was survived by his lover, Winston Wilde; his father, Paul Monette Sr., and his brother, Robert Monette who remains the appointed Trustee of the Monette Horwitz Trust.
Paul Monette was an American author, poet, and activist best remembered for his essays about gay relationships. On September 3, 1974, Monette was introduced to lawyer Roger Horwitz at a party given by Richard Howard in Boston. "And from that moment on the brink of summer's end, no one would ever tell me again that men like me couldn't love." Monette's most acclaimed book, Borrowed Time, chronicles Horwitz's fight against and eventual death from AIDS in 1986.
Paul Monette & Roger Horwitz are both buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills), Los Angeles, California. Horwitz’s headstone reads: “My little friend, we sail together, if we sail at all.”
Paul Monette and Roger Horwitz, Tuscany, photograph by Brother John, a Bendictine monk
Burial: Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills), Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA, Plot: Revelation, L-3275 (next to Roger Horwitz's)
Paul Monette succumbed to AIDS in 1995; thus was silenced one of our most articulate and brave voices. However, Borrowed Time: An AIDS Memoir will serve future GLBT generations as a vivid time capsule for that tragic and toxic era when lots of nice, educated people actually believed that homosexuals were perverts, and AIDS was ‘God’s Punishment.’ This book served as the greatest single inspiration for me to become a writer, while giving reassurance to thousands of gay men suffering (or providing comfort to someone) with AIDS that they were not alone. If I were teaching ‘Gay History 101,’ this would be required reading. --Nick Nolan
Borrowed Time: An AIDS Memoir, an harrowing tale of the last 19 AIDS-wracked months of Monette’s lover, is not for the faint of heart. I remember being overcome with despair as Monette’s powerful love and practical intervention are not enough to save the man who means more to him than life itself. Heartbreaking. An important historical document of the calamitous 1980’s. --Lee Bantle
Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story is an autobiography, a writer’s autobiography, which fascinated me because not only was the writer (Paul Monette) a gay man, but one I already admired from his amazing memoir of AIDS, Borrowed Time: An AIDS Memoir. I remember looking for some hint in these pages of how I should live my own life, what experiences I should have as a gay man in Los Angeles, how I should think about them, how I should write about them. As much as a kind of blueprint for an existence as a window into someone else’s remarkable life, as gay men have had so few role models. It’s hard not to fall in love with the spirit of this beautiful but very human and flawed man, which infuses each and every page --Jim Arnold.
Paul Monette, Los Angeles, CA, 1988, by Robert Giard (http://beinecke.library.yale.edu/dl_crosscollex/brbldl_getrec.asp?fld=img&id=1080163)
American photographer Robert Giard is renowned for his portraits of American poets and writers; his particular focus was on gay and lesbian writers. Some of his photographs of the American gay and lesbian literary community appear in his groundbreaking book Particular Voices: Portraits of Gay and Lesbian Writers, published by MIT Press in 1997. Giard’s stated mission was to define the literary history and cultural identity of gays and lesbians for the mainstream of American society, which perceived them as disparate, marginal individuals possessing neither. In all, he photographed more than 600 writers. (http://beinecke.library.yale.edu/digitallibrary/giard.html)
Days of Love: Celebrating LGBT History One Story at a Time by Elisa Rolle
Paperback: 760 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (July 1, 2014)
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/4910282
Amazon (Paperback): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1500563323/?tag=e
Amazon (Kindle): http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MZG0VHY/?tag=e
Days of Love chronicles more than 700 LGBT couples throughout history, spanning 2000 years from Alexander the Great to the most recent winner of a Lambda Literary Award. Many of the contemporary couples share their stories on how they met and fell in love, as well as photos from when they married or of their families. Included are professional portraits by Robert Giard and Stathis Orphanos, paintings by John Singer Sargent and Giovanni Boldini, and photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnson, Arnold Genthe, and Carl Van Vechten among others. “It's wonderful. Laying it out chronologically is inspired, offering a solid GLBT history. I kept learning things. I love the decision to include couples broken by death. It makes clear how important love is, as well as showing what people have been through. The layout and photos look terrific.” Christopher Bram “I couldn’t resist clicking through every page. I never realized the scope of the book would cover centuries! I know that it will be hugely validating to young, newly-emerging LGBT kids and be reassured that they really can have a secure, respected place in the world as their futures unfold.” Howard Cruse “This international history-and-photo book, featuring 100s of detailed bios of some of the most forward-moving gay persons in history, is sure to be one of those bestsellers that gay folk will enjoy for years to come as reference and research that is filled with facts and fun.” Jack Fritscher
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