week, I'm very excited to turn my blog over to my friend and fellow writer,
Andrew Q. Gordon, whose book, Purpose, I
absolutely loved. I can't wait to read the new one. Andrew's new book, A Closed Door, is set to release today (October 8) by Wayward Publishing. Blurb
thirteen, Orin Merritt left home after high school hoping to escape
the hell his life had become. Ten years later when a tornado destroys his
childhood home and kills his parents, Orin finds himself in an entirely
new nightmare. One he can't run away from.
himself for failing the two people who always loved and supported him, he
returns home and confronts his past in the person of his one-time best friend,
Thomas Kennett. Thomas not only rejected him when Orin came out, he led
the group that tormented Orin into leaving.
As he struggles
to deal with his grief, Orin also labors to fulfill the pledge he made to his
parents before their death. In the process, Orin learns that
sometimes when you go away to find yourself, you leave the answers you're
looking for behind.
Cover Artist: Lily Velden and Jay Aheer
"Orin, I won't."
Thomas stood a bit straighter and his eyes lost the sad, pleading shine.
"I won't hurt you again."
"You can't promise
that. Things happen." Orin watched as his words dragged Thomas back from
the brink of hope.
"If you truly believe
that, then there's nothing I can do. You have to believe there's a chance or
else I can't prove it."
"That's not what I'm
telling you." He locked his gaze on Thomas's. "If I say yes, I'll
have to take down the walls I surrounded my heart with to keep it safe. Once
it's gone, I won't be able bring it back if I get hurt. Not now.
"So what I'm saying
is, think about what you’re asking me to risk. If you really love me, ask
yourself if are you willing to risk
what will happen to me if you can't keep your promise."
He knew how unfair he'd
been, but self-preservation had been a skill he'd honed over the past fifteen
years. He needed Thomas to know just how serious the repercussion could be for
"Orin, I . . . I . . .
how . . .?" Their faces were inches apart, and Thomas moved in for another
This felt different than
the first—less urgent, but no less intense. Orin trembled at the leap he was
about to take. When they stepped back, Thomas rubbed his thumb across Orin's
"I do love you, Orin.
More than I can say. So much, that I'm not willing to risk what will happen if
I fail you again. I don't have that right."
Thomas's lips quivered and
the tears welled at the bottom of his eyes. He kissed Orin's forehead gently.
Please be happy." Without looking back, Thomas walked to the front door,
opened it, and walked away.
Andrew Q. Gordon wrote his first story back when
yellow legal pads, ball point pens were common and a Smith Corona correctable
typewriter was considered high tech. Adapting with technology, he now takes his
MacBook somewhere quiet when he wants to write.
He currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his partner of eighteen years, their young daughter and dog. In addition to dodging some very self-important D.C. 'insiders,' Andrew uses his commute to catch up on his reading. When not working or writing, he enjoys soccer, high fantasy, baseball, and seeing how much coffee he can drink in a day.
On June 26, I quit my job. I immediately stopped doing three
things: setting my alarm, ironing clothes, and shaving. The next day I started Klonopin,
an anticonvulsant often prescribed to treat panic attacks and anxiety. Five
days later I sat in my doctor’s office and, in tears, admitted that for the
first time in I didn’t know how long, I felt like myself. He referred me to a
therapist and the work began. With no job, and a new book set to be released August 1, I
had nothing to do but work on myself and write. I needed to figure not only who
I was but who I wanted to be, what I wanted to do next. Writing was a part of
that. With the publication of my first book, What Binds Us, I was classified as a romance writer specifically
gay romance, more commonly referred to as mm romance. I was never quite comfortable
with that definition quite frankly. My books have strong romantic elements but
I don’t see them as romances. Being so close to releasing In His Eyes, I really needed to think thro…
Today at 10:31 a.m., my dad closed his eyes for the last
time. When he did, a part of me died with him.
I’ll accept your condolences but please check your religion
at the door. And don’t talk to me of your God and His wisdom and mercy. Not today.
Not today. I believe in God, I do. But not today. Not today. Today, I feel He
abandoned me and my father when all I could do was hold his hand and rub his
head and tell him I loved him; when all his doctors could do was increase his
pain medicine and escalate the frequency with which he received them, and swab
his mouth with plain gelatin to make up for the water he could no longer drink,
the food he could no longer eat.
The first time I, went, alone, to visit dad in the hospital,
I arrived in his room while he was still downstairs in radiation. A nurse
walked in and asked who I was.
“I’m Larry, his middle son.”
“Oh, you’re the one who lives in Philadelphia!”
“Yes, how did you know that?”
“Your dad talks about you. He talks about all of his…
Recently, a friend of mine called me“bougie.” In case you’ve never heard the term, Urban
Dictionary defines bougie,a hacked
truncation of the word Bourgeoisie, which refers to the middle-class in Europe,
as “aspiring to be a higher class than one is.”
Now, this wasn’t the first time I’ve been called bougie. And
generally, being called bougie doesn’t offend me because it calls me out for
daring to dream, for striving to accomplish something. I have, after all been called other, worse things. And I don’t
particularly care much what other people think of me. But being called bougie does
rather irritate me because it
inherently asserts that I have no right to dream, to achieve, that who I was at
birth is who I should be at death.
The word bougie seems to stem from a screwed-up thought
process that defines a place for everyone, a place they must always remain. I
remember as a kid, when I talked back, I would be told I was “out of place.”
And that was often a punishable offense. The idea t…