November 28th, 2013

andrew potter

Alexis Roche & John Galliano

John Charles Galliano CBE, RDI (born 28 November 1960) is a Gibraltar-born British fashion designer who was head designer of the French fashion companies John Galliano S.A. (1993 to April 2011), Givenchy (January 1996 to October 1996), and Christian Dior (October 1996 to March 2011).

He was born in Gibraltar to a Gibraltarian father, Juan Galliano, and a Spanish mother, Anita, and has two sisters. Galliano's father was a plumber. His family moved to England in pursuit of work when Galliano was six, and settled in Streatham, South London, before moving to Dulwich and later to Brockley. He was raised in a strict Roman Catholic family. Galliano, who was shy and diffident, often spoke of his struggle to fit in. Recalling his early days, he once admitted: "I don’t think people here understood where I was coming from." His mother, a flamenco teacher, would dress him in his "smartest" outfit even for a trip to the local shops. This, combined with his creative sensibilities, saw him frequently bullied at the London boys' grammar school he attended.

After attending St. Anthony's RC School and Wilson's Grammar School in London, Galliano went on to study at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, from which he graduated in 1988 with a first class honours degree in Fashion Design. His first collection was inspired by the French Revolution and entitled Les Incroyables, with a music soundtrack mixed by DJ Jeremy Healy. The collection received positive reviews and was bought in its entirety for resale in the London fashion boutique Browns. Galliano then started his own fashion label alongside long-term collaborators Amanda Harlech, at that time stylist with Harpers and Queen, and Stephen Jones, a milliner.

On the back of this success, Galliano rented studio space in London, but his talent was not matched by a head for business. Moreover, he would take his enjoyment of London’s nightlife to extremes. Initially, financial backing came from Johan Brun, and when this agreement came to an end, Danish entrepreneur Peder Bertelsen, owner of firm Aguecheek, who were also backing Katherine Hamnett at the time, took over. This agreement ended in 1988 and Galliano sought the backing of German agent Faycal Amor (owner and designer of fashion label Plein Sud) who directed him to set up his base in Paris. Galliano relocated to Paris in search of financial backing and a strong client base. His first show was in 1989 as part of Paris Fashion Week. By 1990, he was bankrupt and, after his own London-based label failed to re-ignite his fortunes, he moved to Paris.

John Charles Galliano CBE, RDI, is a Gibraltar-born British fashion designer who was head designer of the French fashion companies John Galliano S.A. (1993 to April 2011), Givenchy (January 1996 to October 1996), and Christian Dior (October 1996 to March 2011). Galliano shared his Paris home with his boyfriend since 2005 Alexis Roche, a style consultant. Galliano became a familiar figure on the streets of Le Marais, an area of Paris popular with gays and also the city’s Jewish community.

Maria Luisa, 1998

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More Fashion Designers at my website:, My Ramblings/Art

More LGBT Couples at my website:, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance

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andrew potter

Rita Mae Brown (born November 28, 1944)

Rita Mae Brown (born November 28, 1944) is an American writer. She is best known for her first novel Rubyfruit Jungle. Published in 1973, it dealt with lesbian themes in an explicit manner unusual for the time. Brown is also a mystery writer and screenwriter.

Brown was born in Hanover, Pennsylvania, and grew up in Florida, and as of 2004 lived outside Charlottesville, Virginia.

In the 1960s, Brown attended Broward Community College and the University of Florida but transferred. She moved to New York and attended New York University, where she received a degree in classics and English. Later she received another degree in cinematography from the New York School of Visual Arts. Brown received a Ph.D. in literature from Union Institute & University in 1976, and holds a doctorate in political science from the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C.

In the late 1960s, Brown turned her attention to politics. She became active in the American Civil Rights Movement, the anti-war movement, the Gay Liberation movement and the feminist movement. She took an administrative position with the fledgling National Organization for Women, but angrily resigned with Michela Griffo in January 1970 over Betty Friedan's anti-gay remarks and NOW's attempts to distance itself from lesbian organizations. She played a leading role in the "Lavender Menace" zap of the Second Congress to Unite Women on May 1, 1970, which protested about Friedan's remarks and the exclusion of lesbians from the women's movement.

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To me, Rubyfruit Jungle was the opening act of the Renaissance in LGBT lit. Before that, I was at the library searching out dusty tomes from the 20s and 30s like “The Well of Loneliness,” and then, wholly unable to get through them, trying to decide if they were more boring or more depressing (hint: sometimes it’s a tie). Rubyfruit Jungle was different. It was alive. It was normal. It was like opening a window and letting air into a painfully stuffy room. I breathed as if I hadn’t breathed in years. I probably hadn’t. I was about 18 when this novel came to be. I would have liked it a couple of years earlier. Better late than never. --Catherine Ryan Hyde
Skip forward to adolescence. And a wise old librarian whose name I never knew (or have failed to remember) who spied a weird little tomboy sitting in the stacks and slipped her a copy of Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown that would let her know that she wasn’t the only oddball in the world. --A.M. Riley
When RubyFruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown came out in the early 1970’s all the male homosexual novels around were weepy, whiney and annoying. Brown’s rambunctious young tomboy lesbian heroine was not only someone I could easily identify with, she was also someone who lived a life of let’s-see-what-happens-next adventure that became my own mantra for the entire period. By turns, it’s searingly honest, witty and quite satirical -- power-lipstick lesbians take the worst hit. Brown never topped this book. --Felice Picano
Long known as a lesbian author, Six of One by Rita Mae Brown is a charming and heartfelt tale which follows three generations of an incredibly eccentric family who live in an even more incredibly eccentric town astride the Mason-Dixon line. The antics of these loveable kooks still resound in my memory even twenty years after having read the book. Brown built a comic novel of Southern Gothic insanity on a solid foundation of deep love and friendship. --Hal Bodner
The men in GLF and GAA had grown up in a prefeminist world. Their actions, even after lesbians confronted them, often reflected their upbringing, which was not to take women and their concerns seriously. Nevertheless, many lesbians joined these groups because they were not welcome in the National Organization of Women (NOW) or even in some radical feminist groups. Betty Friedman's antilesbian sentiments were so present in NOW that a group of lesbians, including Karla Jay and Rita Mae Brown, formed the Lavender Menace, a guerilla action group. They confronted NOW's members at its Second Congress to United Women in May 1970, where they passed out their manifesto, "The Woman-Identified Woman". A year later, NOW passed a resolution affirming that lesbian rights were "a legitimate concern for feminism". But a critical break had occured. The Lavender Menace, who now called themselves Radicalesbians and understood that their concerns were distinct from those of heterosexual women and gay men, began a distinct movement: lesbian feminism.
Lesbian feminism created a new political and social identity for lesbians than had not existed previously. Jill Johnston, a New York-based dance critic and activist nationally famous for her outspokeness and flair for publicity, stated in her 1973 book Lesbian Nation: The Feminist Solution:
"Historically the lesbian had two choices: being criminal or going straight. The present revolutionary project is the creation of a legitimate state defined by women. Only women can do this. Going straight is legitimizing your oppression. As was being criminal. A male society will not permit any other choice for a woman."
Faderman describes lesbian feminism as being "pro-women and pro-children" and compares it to the utopian vision of reformers such as Jane Addams. In the early 1970s, women started national network of small presses, such as Daughters Inc., which published Rita Mae Brown's groundbreaking lesbian novel Rubyfruit Jungle. --A Queer History of the United States by Michael Bronski

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andrew potter

Michael Arditti

Michael Arditti is an English writer. He has written seven novels to date, including Easter, The Enemy of the Good and Jubilate. He has also written a collection of short stories, Good Clean Fun, is a prolific literary critic and an occasional broadcaster for the BBC. Much of his work has explored issues of spirituality and sexuality, and he has been described by Philip Pullman as ‘Our best chronicler of the rewards and pitfalls of present day faith’.

Michael Arditti was born in Cheshire and educated at Rydal School and Jesus College, Cambridge. In his early career, he wrote plays for the stage and the radio and was a theatre critic for the London Evening Standard. He writes book reviews for several British papers and periodicals, including the Daily Telegraph, the Independent and The Times.

His novel Easter won the Waterstone’s Mardi Gras award and his other novels have been shortlisted and longlisted for various awards. He was a Harold Hyam Wingate Scholar in 2000, a Royal Literary Fund Fellow in 2001 and the Leverhulme artist in residence at the Freud museum in 2008. He won an Oppenheim-John Downes memorial award in 2003, and Arts Council awards in 2004 and 2007.


Further Readings:

Easter by Michael Arditti
Paperback: 404 pages
Publisher: Arcadia Books (January 1, 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1905147937
ISBN-13: 978-1905147939
Amazon: Easter
Amazon Kindle: Easter

Michael Arditti's magnificent novel is both a devastating portrait of today's Church of England and an audacious reworking of the central myth of Western culture. Winner of the Mardi Gras & Waterstone's Book Award 2000

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andrew potter

Rainbow Awards pre-party and 7th anniversary (Day 28)

November 2013 marks the 7th anniversary since I opened my first journal (and yes, I have an itch, but I will scratch it!), on LJ, and the 5th anniversary of the Rainbow Awards. So, of course I decided for a big bash party. 190 authors, all of them in the 2013 Rainbow Awards, have donated or an ebook, or a print book, and I will use them for a Treasure Hunt. Every day, for all November, I will post 6 excerpts (a random page of the book). No reference to title, or author, or publisher. You have to match it with the book ;-) comment on the blog (do not leave anonymous comments, if you post as anonymous, leave a contact email (comments are screened)), you can comment 1 time for more matchings (you can even try for all 6 books if you like, so 6 chances to win every day). Until the end I will not say which matching is right, so you will have ALL month to try. No limit on how many books you can win, the more you try the better chance you have to win. End of November, among the right matchings, I will draw the winners. So now? let the game start!

Be aware that these previous excerpts: 11, 23, 25 have not yet been matched, so if you go back there is good chance to win them! if at the end of the treasure hunt they will be still unmatched they will go to the one who matched more books.

The books are (Author - Title - Format of prize):

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andrew potter

Complete Faith by Sue Brown

This is a typical gay western romance, with its plot developing in the middle of farm animals, Sunday roasts, and bunkhouses. I’m not familiar with that life, but, from what I can gather, the author is, the feeling felt true, cause it wasn’t a dreamlike utopia, but more low income jobs, small town community, that can be good and bad at the same time, and always checking the account books cause the next storm can be your defeat. So the setting was more than good, and I appreciated the choral job the author did with all the characters. Maybe I had some struggling at first in getting familiar with all faces, cause this is a second book in a series, and almost all the characters came from the previous story. But once you manage, the output is to want to go back and read that book.

There was an hint of May/December romance, meaning that Tommy is a very young cowboy and Noah is instead a more or less thirty years old pastor, plus Tommy is totally new to relationship, being gay but never had the chance to “experiment” it, while instead Noah hints to the fact he had at least one important long-term relationship in his past. But again, the author managed to make it playful and not like something really bearing on their love story.

There is maybe too much sex, but that is entirely me, and truth be told, there is an equal balance of plot and sex, so that this is for sure an erotic romance (meaning romance with sex) and not plenty erotica.

Paperback: 240 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (April 30, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1613724756
ISBN-13: 978-1613724750
Amazon: Complete Faith
Amazon Kindle: Complete Faith

Series: Morning Report
1) Morning Report
2) Complete Faith


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