September 23rd, 2014

andrew potter

Ian Hunter & Leith Semmens

Ian Keith Hunter (born 23 September 1960) is an Australian politician, representing the Australian Labor Party (ALP) in the South Australian Legislative Council since the 2006 state election. In October 2011 Hunter was elevated to Cabinet as Minister for Communities and Social Inclusion in the Weatherill Labor government. Hunter is currently the Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation, Minister for Water and the River Murray, and Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation. Hunter and his partner of 20 years, Leith Semmens chose to travel to Spain to marry as Australian law does not recognise same sex marriage.

Prior to entering parliament he worked as a Research Assistant in the Department of Clinical Immunology at Flinders Medical Centre, later serving as an advisor to the Federal government and as South Australian State Secretary of the ALP.

Hunter is the only openly gay member of the South Australian Parliament, as well as Cabinet, as well as the first to marry while in parliament and the second same-sex married politician in Australia, and is noted for his public advocacy for LGBT issues, which at times has conflicted with aspects of ALP policy.

Hunter grew up in the suburb of Holden Hill in Adelaide's North-East. He was educated at Gilles Plains High School and graduated from Flinders University with a Bachelor of Science (Honours), majoring in Microbiology and Genetics. Throughout university he worked as a Youth Worker at the Child Youth Support Service in Norwood.

Hunter was active in community politics at university, becoming president of the Flinders University Gay Society and later going on to help found the South Australian AIDS Action Committee. He was involved in a variety of campaigns in the LGBT community, including a successful move to have sexuality included as a grounds for discrimination in 1986.

Ian Hunter is an Australian politician. In October 2011 Hunter was elevated to Cabinet as Minister for Communities and Social Inclusion in the Weatherill Labor government. Hunter is currently the Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation, Minister for Water and the River Murray, and Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation. On December 19, 2012, Hunter and his partner, Leith Semmens chose to travel to Spain to marry as Australian law does not recognise same sex marriage.

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

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andrew potter

2014 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mentions

Waiting for the list of finalists to be announced beginning of October, I will post daily the 2014 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mentions: an honorable mention means a judge gave a rate of 36 or above out of 40 to the book; an honorable mention doesn't mean the book is automatically among the finalists, could be could be not, but it's important to understand there are more than 500 books in the literary contests, all books are in the process of being read by the jury, but only half of them will go to finals. So please, congratulate with me this year honorable mentions:

Gay Erotic Romance
The Only One Who Knows by Cat Grant & L.A. Witt

Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (January 7, 2014)
Amazon Kindle: The Only One Who Knows

"Oh, how I love stories about tough men finding enough softness in their hearts to let in and love another one :-) The book made me "Awww-ing" with delight every two pages :-)"

Bisexual Sci-fi / Futuristic
Alpha Trine (The Valespian Pact) by Lexi Ander
Paperback: 200 pages
Publisher: Less Than Three Press (September 25, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1620042444
ISBN-13: 978-1620042441
Amazon: Alpha Trine (The Valespian Pact)
Amazon Kindle: Alpha Trine (The Valespian Pact)

"Honestly this is one of the best books I've read this year. It is a rich, full world with rich, full characters. I couldn't have asked for a better sci-fi book. Sci-fi is one of the hardest (in my opinion) genres to write in, and it's rare (for me) that a story captures my interest so thoroughly."

Gay Mystery / Thriller
The Angel at the End of the Road by D.J. Manly
Paperback: 144 pages
Publisher: Amber Quill Press, LLC (January 21, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1611248450
ISBN-13: 978-1611248456
Amazon: The Angel At The End Of The Road
Amazon Kindle: The Angel At The End Of The Road

"Well developed plot and characters. Well-written. Author did an excellent job of making the reader connect to the story and characters. "

Gay Romantic Comedy
The Ghost Slept Over by Marshall Thornton
Paperback: 236 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 19, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1494237393
ISBN-13: 978-1494237394
Amazon: The Ghost Slept Over
Amazon Kindle: The Ghost Slept Over

"This story was genuinely hilarious at points. I appreciate how it really got the “comedy” part of “romantic comedy.” It was good before Mac entered into things, and it was great once the ghost was established and became a real part of the narrative. A very funny take on the combination of romance and the supernatural."

Gay Contemporary Romance
Cub by Jeff Mann

Paperback: 226 pages
Publisher: Bear Bones Books (February 14, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1590213394
ISBN-13: 978-1590213391
Amazon: Cub
Amazon Kindle: Cub

"Kind of a primer on learning to be okay with your queerness, in whatever form it takes. Crisp writing, strong sense of place, enjoyed its focus on less commonly depicted aspects of queerness."

"I loved everything about this story: the rich portrait of main and supporting characters, the rural setting, the not so typical story and the fact that the author thought about gay teens different from slim twinks or muscled jocks. It was simply refreshing, not to mention - very well written. After all, every Bear was once a Cub."

Gay Contemporary Romance
The Only One Who Matters by Cat Grant & L.A. Witt

Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd. (March 18, 2014)
Amazon Kindle: The Only One Who Matters

"A sweet and emotional tale of two SEALs--one current, and one retired due to an injury. I enjoyed their journey as they figured out how to deal with separations and fears together."

Gay Contemporary Romance
Message of Love by Jim Provenzano

Paperback: 372 pages
Publisher: Myrmidude Press (March 14, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0615669247
ISBN-13: 978-0615669243
Amazon: Message of Love
Amazon Kindle: Message of Love

"Rich characterization, very much of a time and place"

"Jim hit spot on with the setting at that time, I graduated in 79 from that area with a boy in a wheelchair in my class and Jim stated the problems straight out and correct. I will have to go and get the first novel but even though this is a sequel to a book I have not read, it still drew me in and made sense. There were spots where I did not have previous knowledge from the first book but it still smoothed out for me."

Gay Paranormal Romance
Another Healing by M. Raiya
Paperback: 216 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (March 10, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 162798559X
ISBN-13: 978-1627985598
Amazon: Another Healing
Amazon Kindle: Another Healing

"Interesting premise, good characters."

Gay Contemporary Romance
The Fall Guide by Talya Andor
Paperback: 280 pages
Publisher: Less Than Three Press (December 4, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1620042932
ISBN-13: 978-1620042939
Amazon: The Fall Guide
Amazon Kindle: The Fall Guide

"I think the rating I gave this wonderful, funny book says it all. It was such a pleasure getting inmersed into the lives of these characters. The way the plot and characters were developed was smooth and enjoyable. The MC's are the kind of 'people' one would like to have as friends. The imagery is spot on with the description of everything surrounding Eric, the main MC. This is the first book I read from this author and I truly enjoyed the journey Ms Tayla Andor has taken me on. I'm looking forward to reading more of her books."

Gay Contemporary Romance
The Tin Box by Kim Fielding
Paperback: 210 pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (September 20, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1627981691
ISBN-13: 978-1627981699
Amazon: The Tin Box
Amazon Kindle: The Tin Box

"I almost cried reading this beautiful, remarkable, gut wrenching, heart-warming story of William Lyon and Colby Anderson. William's desperate search for his truth, for his reality, for his identity after having endured conversion therapy at the suggestion of his therapist, pastor and parents who couldn't handle him being gay and after suffering the end of his failed six year marriage to a woman, Lisa, is wondrously coupled with his newly burgeoning feelings for Colby a flashy, unashamed, outgoing, flamboyant gay boy with his own dark past who never stops smiling but who is remarkably stable with his responsibilities. "

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andrew potter

2014 GRL Blog Tour: Z. Allora

Starting from March up until September I will be part of the 2014 GRL Blog Tour as featured blogger. I will host authors attending the GayRomLit Retreat in Chicago (October 16-19, 2014: To my guests, I asked to brainstorm around the common theme "inspiration". Today author is Z. Allora:

Thank you, Elisa, for having me here. One of the highlights last year at the GRL was meeting you and your mother. I was awed by the fabulous vintage dresses you appeared in.

GRL is like that. Unexpected delights in meeting in-person people you’ve only read or chatted with online. The Gay Romance Literature Retreat is a gathering of readers and writers sharing their joy and excitement about gay romance. But it’s so much more than that, isn’t it?

This past spring my PFLAG group was disheartened that an amendment was up for a vote. Some of South Carolina colleges would lose funding if the schools kept an LGBT coming of age book in their course syllabus. Our high school kids felt like the fine state of South Carolina once again slapped them in the face.

I (who am not comfortable speaking in public) spoke up. I excitedly gushed about GRL. I told my PFLAG of how about 400 authors and readers would gather together this year in Chicago to celebrate gay romance. I held GRL up as an example of things getting better.

They laughed when I told the PFLAG group that our community of writer’s wanted to go so badly to this gay romance gathering the registration process was akin to the ‘Hunger Games’, attempting to nab a spot. (I clarified that I did not find it amusing… they laughed harder.)

GRL is more than just a gathering of like-minded individuals. GRL to me is hope. We come together as a tribe and stand against all the people who don’t understand. The convention nurtures our souls so we are able to deal with the world and continue to promote equality throughout the year.

These books we read and write mean so much to people we’ve never met. Here’s an example: some lovely authors and a very generous publisher sent our PFLAG a bunch of books for our PFLAG library. Our trans kids were shocked. One couldn’t believe, asking in shock, “There are books… real books about people LIKE ME???”

Is the GRL a party? Hell yeah it’s a festival of happy! GRL is a celebration for people committed to giving happily ever afters to characters of all sexual orientations. Our books give everyone a character they can connect with and a life to strive for. We are an example of what’s possible when a group insists love is love.

As I prepare once more to immerse myself in the warmth and love that is GRL, it seems appropriate to talk about my re-release of With Wings here. Why you ask? (Well, we know it’s not my mad marketing skills.) Elisa’s original review of With Wings gave me courage to continue sharing my words as I tried to develop as a writer. She wrote: “A pure yaoi novel, like it was long I haven't read; it’s like the author wanted to claim, I love Yaoi, and so what? She never once tried to make it pass for something else, and she pushed all the by the book buttons: young, cute and pretty characters, long hair, big eyes, pop start I’m straight/I’m not gay, Gay for You, Gay Virgin, and if you toss some other rule, it’s probably here. So no, this is not a novel for whom doesn’t like this type of story, otherwise they will start to find the “flaws”: yaoi is yaoi, and we all know it’s to entertain and not for realism.”

Thank you for your kind words Elisa. In the years since then, I re-wrote the original series, using knowledge I’ve gained during that time.

Here’s my new blurb and excerpt for With Wings… and it’s still yaoi-licious.

Z. Allora is offering a copy of With Wings to one commenter on this blog. You can comment on LJ or DW if you have an account (I will send a PM to the winner), if you don't have an account, please leave a comment on DW with a contact email.

With Wings (The Dark Angels Book 1) by Z. Allora
Publisher: Rocky Ridge Books; 2 edition (September 5, 2014)
Amazon Kindle: With Wings (The Dark Angels Book 1)

Blurb: The lights go down and stage lights up. The Dark Angels have arrived. With his come-hither voice and body made for sin, lead singer Angel Luv draws lovers like a magnet. And when he caresses and taunts shy guitarist Darius Stone on stage, well…it’s an act, right? But every touch lights a fire, and every flirtatious glance chips away at Dare’s certainty that he’s straight. No one else has so captured his imagination.

Temptation beckons. It’s hard not to notice the want in Dare’s eyes, the way he stares when he thinks Angel’s not watching. One wrong move might scare him away, but a work trip to exotic Bali might be the perfect place to let Dare explore his sexuality, with none to be the wiser. But their “friends with benefits” pact has an expiration date, that just might sour their friendship.

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Bio: Every one deserves a happy ending... (and Z. Allora makes sure they get one). She’s written hot rockers, sexy zombies, and Thailand club performers-- stories about love, romance and are tied together with erotic sex. Utilizing her extensive foreign travels, she brings readers to places they've yet to visit, introducing them to cultures they've yet to explore. But with every word she writes she hope to convey that love is love. She welcomes contact and looks forward to hearing from her “pretties”!
E-mail: Z.Allora@
Facebook: Z Allora Allora

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andrew potter

Above All by Jane Elliot

Maybe I'm full of of plots and stories that almost nothing seems to spark my level of interest, but that is not the case with Above All. Even if I was very busy, and sincerely I didn't have many time, these two men and their story was always there, in the back of my mind, asking me to continue reading and knowing what was their happy ending. Cause Above All is a romance, almost sweet sometime, not really about the sex, more about the romance.

Truth be told, while Brian, with his troubled past but clearly good heart is for sure a romantic hero, Jasper for sure isn't; Jasper is actually mean with most people, friends included, and without realizing it, he is mean also with Brian, whom sincerely doesn't need it, on the contrary, he needs to be taken care, to be nurtered, and yes, even pampered a bit.

Sure, Jasper's bad behaviour isn't specifically towards Brian, Jasper is Jasper, he is bad with everyone; it seems Jasper likes to plot vendetta plans, and to realize them. Even if, most of the time, Jasper is the one on the wrong side. And instead Brian, who will have all the rights to plan vendetta, is the first to be willing to forgive, to give without asking, even when he has nothing basically to give.

Anyway, I loved this story, from the main characters, to the supporting, to Barney the cat... everyone was perfect.

Publisher: Manifold Press (May 3, 2013)
Amazon Kindle: Above All

More Reviews by Author at my website:, My Reviews

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