May 22nd, 2013

andrew potter

Claude McKay (September 15, 1889 - May 22, 1948)

Claude McKay (September 15, 1889 – May 22, 1948) was a Jamaican-American writer and poet. He was a seminal figure in the Harlem Renaissance and wrote three novels: Home to Harlem (1928), a best-seller which won the Harmon Gold Award for Literature, Banjo (1929), and Banana Bottom (1933). McKay also authored a collection of short stories, Gingertown (1932), and two autobiographical books, A Long Way from Home (1937) and Harlem: Negro Metropolis (1940). His book of poetry, Harlem Shadows (1922) was among the first books published during the Harlem Renaissance. His book of collected poems, Selected Poems (1953), was published posthumously.

McKay was attracted to communism in his early life, but he was never a member of the Communist Party.

Claude McKay was born Festus Claudius McKay in Nairne Castle near James Hill, Clarendon, Jamaica. He was the youngest child of Thomas Francis McKay and Hannah Ann Elizabeth Edwards, well-to-do farmers who had enough property to qualify to vote. Thomas McKay's father was of Ashanti descent, and Claude recounted that his father would share stories of Ashanti customs with him. Claude's mother was of Malagasy ancestry.

At four years old, McKay started basic school at the church that he attended. At age seven, he was sent to live with his oldest brother, a school teacher, to be given the best education available. While living with his oldest brother, Uriah Theodore, McKay became an avid reader of classical and British literature, as well as philosophy, science and theology. He started writing poetry at the age of 10.

In 1906, McKay became an apprentice to a carriage and cabinet maker known as Old Brenga. He stayed in his apprenticeship for about two years. During that time, in 1907, McKay met a man named Walter Jekyll who became a mentor and an inspiration for him. He encouraged McKay to concentrate on his writing. Jekyll convinced McKay to write in his native dialect and even later set some of McKay's verses to music. Jekyll helped McKay publish his first book of poems, Songs of Jamaica, in 1912. These were the first poems published in Jamaican Patois (dialect of mainly English words and African structure). McKay's next volume, Constab Ballads, came out in the same year and was based on his experience as a police officer in Jamaica.

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As cultural historians such as Eric Garber, David Levering Lewis, Amitai Avi-ram, and Alden Reimonenq have begun to show, many of the leading male poets and novelists of the Renaissance were gay-identified or sexually active with men as well as women, including Countee Cullen, Wallace Thurman, Bruce Nugent, Claude McKay, and possibly Langston Hughes. They regularly socialized with each other in gay settings and discussed the affairs they were having with other men. A gay artist from France who was immediately drawn into their circle when he visited New York in the late 1920s recalled that “there was a whole small crowd of rather nice gay blacks around Countee Cullen. They used to meet practically every evening at Caska Bonds’ and sit by the hour playing cards there.” They were also involved in broader gay social circles, attending the gay parties thrown by Bonds, Clinton Moore, Eddie Manchester, and other black gay men, and the extravagant “mixed” parties thrown by the millionaire heiress A’Leila Walker and Van Vechten. --Chauncey, George (1995-05-18). Gay New York: Gender, Urban Culture, and the Making of the Gay Male World, 1890-1940 (Kindle Locations 5202-5209). BASIC. Kindle Edition.
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andrew potter

Langston Hughes (February 1, 1902 - May 22, 1967)

James Mercer Langston Hughes (February 1, 1902 – May 22, 1967) was an American poet, novelist, playwright, and columnist. He was one of the earliest innovators of the new literary art form jazz poetry. Hughes is best-known for his work during the Harlem Renaissance. He famously wrote about the period that "Harlem was in vogue".

Langston Hughes was born in Joplin, Missouri, the second child of school teacher Carrie (Caroline) Mercer Langston and her husband James Nathaniel Hughes (1871–1934). Both parents were mixed race, and Langston Hughes was of African American, European American and Native American descent. He grew up in a series of Midwestern small towns. Both his paternal and maternal great-grandmothers were African American, and both his paternal and maternal great-grandfathers were white: one of Scottish and one of Jewish descent. Hughes was named after both his father and his grand-uncle, John Mercer Langston who, in 1888, became the first African American to be elected to the United States Congress from Virginia. Hughes's maternal grandmother Mary Patterson was of African American, French, English and Native American descent. One of the first women to attend Oberlin College, she first married Lewis Sheridan Leary, also of mixed race. He joined the men in John Brown's Raid on Harper's Ferry in 1859 and died from his wounds.

In 1869 the widow Mary Patterson Leary married again, into the elite, politically active Langston family. Her second husband was Charles Henry Langston, of African American, Native American, and Euro-American ancestry. He and his younger brother John Mercer Langston worked for the abolitionist cause and helped lead the Ohio Anti-Slavery Society in 1858.

Charles Langston later moved to Kansas where he was active as an educator and activist for voting and rights for African Americans. Charles and Mary's daughter Caroline Mercer Langston was the mother of Langston Hughes. Hughes's father left his family and later divorced Carrie. He went to Cuba, and then Mexico, seeking to escape the enduring racism in the United States.

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andrew potter

GayRomLit Ebook Giveaway: K.C. Burn - Alien 'n' Outlaw

I asked to all the authors joining the GayRomLit convention in Atlanta in October ( a personal favor, a special Ebook Giveaway: twice a week I will post 1 book from each author, and among those who will leave a comment, I will draw a winner. Very easy and very fast ;-) I will send a PM to the winner, so remember to not leave anonymous comments!

And the ebook giveaway goes to: moonlite_tryst

Today author is K.C. Burn: KC Burn has been writing for as long as she can remember and is a sucker for happy endings (of all kinds). After moving from Toronto to Florida for her husband to take a dream job, she discovered a love of gay romance and fulfilled a dream of her own -- getting published. By day, she edits web content and at night she neglects her supportive, understanding hubby and needy cat to write stories about men loving men in the past, present and future. Writing is always fun and rewarding, but writing about her guys is the most fun she’s had in a long time, and she hopes you’ll enjoy them as much as she does.
Most recent title: 50 Gays of Shade
Publishers: Carina Press, Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Torquere Press

Alien 'n' Outlaw by KC Burn
Publisher: Carina Press (July 2, 2012)
Amazon Kindle: Alien 'n' Outlaw

R'kos, son of the Ankylos Emperor, is expected to settle down. But he's much more attracted to human males than to his own species. Eager to explore his forbidden longings, he steals a ship and heads to Elora Ki to see if he can find the right human guy.

Darien robs the corrupt to give to those in need, but now he needs a ride off Elora Ki, stat. Pursued by drug lords, he accepts help from the amorous stranger who calls himself Ricky. As they fly together along Darien's route, their friendship quickly turns into passion.

But when Ricky is injured, Darien must contact the embassy to get his alien lover the medical care he needs. As Darien finds himself accused of kidnapping, and Ricky fears his family's disappointment, can the two protect their growing relationship? Or are their differences just too great?

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andrew potter

Chris Salvatore (born May 22, 1985)

Chris Salvatore (born May 22, 1985) is an American actor, singer-songwriter, model, and gay-rights activist. He is currently sitting at #41 on AfterElton's top 50 gay celebrities.

Growing up in the small town of Richboro, Pennsylvania, he spent his days singing, acting, and performing for his family. By the time he was 15, young Chris had already written his first song. After completing his high school education, Salvatore began his career in 2005 during his attendance at Berklee College of Music in Boston. There, he studied vocal performance and soon began recording songs.

After some time at Berklee, Salvatore moved to New York City in 2006 to try his hand at acting. Once there, he enrolled in The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts and realized his talent and love for film. Salvatore completed his schooling and began preparing for the big leagues in Los Angeles. He was contacted by a casting director for Q. Allan Brocka's Eating Out film series and within the week, Salvatore moved to California to star as "Zack" in Eating Out 3: All You Can Eat (2009). He continued the role in two additional films in the series: Eating Out 4: Drama Camp (2011) and Eating Out 5: The Open Weekend (2012).

Chris Salvatore is known for his single "Dirty Love" (released in 2010). Recently, Salvatore has been uploading short musical covers of songs he and his fans like to his YouTube channel (which currently has over 12,000 subscribers). In addition to song covers, he spends his time evangelizing equality in the LGBT community. Some of his videos include messages for the It Gets Better Campaign while others are simply kind and uplifting messages of hope. His latest efforts include the singles 'What You Do To Me' (2012) and the ballad 'Hurricane' (2012).

Salvatore's songs have been featured on MTV's show Paris Hilton's My New BFF and in the movie credits of Eating Out 3: All You Can Eat.


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andrew potter

Wake Me Up Inside (The Mates Series) by Cardeno C.

This is the first paranormal romance I read by this author, but it’s really not so different from the contemporary romance I was used to; Cardeno C. likes a lot the concept of together-forever, and often the characters are childhood friends who experiment together for the first time, from love to sex and everything else in between.

In this case Zev is a shapeshifter, living in a community just outside a small town and he recognize his mate, Jonah, a same age kid, when he is only 1 years old. In a way or the other, he first manages to become friend with the other kid as a wolf puppy, and then, at 7 years old, as schoolmate, and later as boyfriend. Zev knows that, once he will bond with Jonah, they will not be able to stay apart, and so Zev self-inflicts a torture, denying the need to have sex with Jonah until the time Jonah will be back from college… unfortunately Jonah decides to become a doctor and between college and residency, the target age is more around thirty than twenty.

As I said, this is a paranormal romance, but really, it’s pretty much a best friends/forever boyfriends story; not Zev or Jonah have any doubts each other is their soul mate, Jonah may question why Zev doesn’t want to have sex, and maybe he falters a little in his good proposal to stay faithful to his boyfriend even when living far apart, but it’s nothing major, nothing tragic or irreparable.

In the end the story was more cute and tender than “paranormal”, if to paranormal you give the usually connotation of adventure/thrilling plot with fast-paced rhythm.

Amazon: Wake Me Up Inside
Amazon Kindle: Wake Me Up Inside
Paperback: 250 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (August 15, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1613727119
ISBN-13: 978-1613727119

Reading List: list&view=elisa.rolle

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andrew potter

NOAH’S GAY WEDDING CRUISE - MarriageEvolved Edition

My friend Paul contacted me with a wonderful news: he is getting married! This is a wonderful news, but it's even more wonderful because Paul is supporting a charity project and of course I'm all for spreading the news. So please welcome Paul and share with him this joyous news:

Several years ago, I painted Noah's Gay Wedding Cruise to express my optimism about the marriage equality movement. I believed we were on the cusp of great progress, and I chose to symbolize our inevitable victory with my own version of the Noah's Ark story. I painted a grand ark/cruise ship filled with happy gay and lesbian animal couples and a few human guests too (like Ellen DeGeneres/Portia de Rossi, and Elton John/David Furnish). There are even some drowning sinners (such as Ann Coulter, Larry Craig, Sally Kern, and Fred Phelps)!

Fast-forward to now. Indeed we have come a long way! Twelve states have legalized gay marriage, and important decisions about DOMA and Proposition 8 are being considered by the Supreme Court. Unfortunately I still live in a state where I am not allowed to get married, but Dennis and I have decided to do it anyway. We are excited to be a part of a special initiative by the group MarriageEvolved called C-Bus of Love. Along with 24 other LGBT couples (who also can't get married in their home states), we will be traveling by bus to Washington D.C. this June to get married on the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court.

In honor of this, I'm releasing a special new print -- Noah's Gay Wedding Cruise: MarriageEvolved Edition. It's an update of my original painting with the addition of Joshua and Steve Snyder-Hill, the two founders of MarriageEvolved. Steve is the soldier who was booed during the Republican primaries last year after asking a question about Don't Ask, Don't Tell. The incident caused great controversy for the candidates who did nothing to discourage the crowd from booing someone serving their country. I can't imagine the bravery it must have taken to out himself on international television while on active duty. Together, he and Joshua have championed the cause of marriage equality, even fighting DOMA on the national level to establish equality for LGBT military spouses, and they won't rest until everyone in this country who wants to get married will have the right to do so. I'm proud that they are our friends and thrilled to add them to the crew of Noah's Gay Wedding Cruise -- especially since they are the co-captains of our own upcoming wedding excursion!

Josh & Steve

100% of the profits from the sale of Noah's Gay Wedding Cruise: MarriageEvolved Edition will be donated to MarriageEvolved to help pay for the C-Bus of Love trip and future advocacy work of the organization. It's an important, worthwhile cause and I encourage everyone to show their support by purchasing a limited-edition print today. They are available in three different sizes in my online store HERE.

13" x 11" - $35
20" x 16" - $75
26" x 20" - $150

Visit the C-Bus of Love website to learn more about our upcoming road trip for equality. And check out our wedding bio while you're there!

Dennis & Paul

So, what you are waiting for? go and buy these wonderful prints to support MarriageEvolved, and to close this post, I want to add my "special edition", the Gold Marriage LGBT Couples, those partners who managed to stay together for more than 50 years, despite the history "telling" them they were not married, but in their case, the legal papers didn't mean nothing, they were officially married in their heart.

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andrew potter

2013 Rainbow Awards Submission: Shannon West - Making the Grade

Making The Grade by Shannon West
Publisher: MLR Press (May 3, 2013)
Amazon Kindle: Making The Grade

Will misunderstandings and shadows from their past sabotage Travis and Shane's hot new romance?

Travis is trying hard to make enough money to pay at least part of his tuition so he's not still paying off student loans with his social security checks.Enter Shane Bradfield, rich, sexy and sinfully good looking. Shane has never been attracted to cute little twinks, even those who look like Travis, but when Travis darts out in front of his motorcycle, he falls for Travis quite literally.They begin a hot romance, but shadows from their past, misunderstandings and Travis's notion that Shane is way out of his league all threaten to sabotage their budding romance.

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