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.
I remember the accident as if it was yesterday. I had been living in Washington, D.C. for three years. That
particular morning, a Saturday, I was running late for work. It was a gray, wet
morning at the edge of Winter. Heavy rain, like molten white gold, fell from an
aluminum sky as I blazed along at 80 mph. A gray car merged onto the roadway from
the right, then proceeded to move into my lane without signaling. The car was
moving so slowly it looked like it was moving backwards. I pressed the brakes hard,
pumping steadily with increasing pressure, my right hand tight on the gearshift
ready to down shift. Realizing collision was inevitable, I glanced at the
speedometer: 60. The impact sent my little car spinning towards the concrete
divider separating west-bound traffic from east. The world seemed upside down.
I remember thinking, I’m going to die and
I never got to be friends with my father. I glanced up at the sky, oddly
unafraid, and I swear I saw the hand of God reach down and stop…
My life: I have been a model citizen; a good son; employee
of the year, year after year after year. I have lived in the shadows, a ghost,
unseen. And now, as my life ebbs away, eternity like a black moon
rising, I felt his hands on my body, efficient and cool. My chest was tight,
and I was uncomfortable, but I didn’t mind, not really. I had endured worse,
much worse. I wished I could scratch my nose. I wished I could move. “Does he not have any family—anyone we should call?” someone
else was in the room with us, then. “No,” he said, his hands working. “I suspect he was gay,” he
added, speaking of me as if I was already dead. “And you know,” he continued,
his hands working, working, “He was of that generation that kept in the
shadows.” I recognized his voice now; he was my day nurse. He was a
fey young thing, gentle and outrageous, but much loved by patients and staff
alike who treated him not as a curiosity to be pointed at and whispered about, perhaps
even laughed at, nor as some exotic…
I am Prometheus. Prometheus. Say it slowly,
roll the letters around in your mouth. Prometheus.
It is not my real name but it is name most fitting for me. Prometheus, the
creator of mankind and its greatest benefactor, chained to a rock, his liver
eaten daily by an eagle, in eternal damnation for stealing fire and gifting it
to mankind. Yes, there are definite similarities between us.
I am Prometheus, and this is my story. Except it’s not my story. I wish it was, but I am
not unique or special. This is the story of untold millions of hapless chaps
and chicklets caught up in the grinding gears of the corporate machine.
This is a faux memoir told episodically. You will be
inclined, at times, to laugh at us, and cry for us. Do not hold back either
impulse. That is the point of sharing this story—to remind us that life is
nothing but a series of small comedies and tragedies. What is important is what
we take away from each occurrence, what we learn from each calamity and joy.
What will be…