Happy New Year! Happy New Blog!
As another year rolls around, some look back and some look forward. I’m doing a bit of both simply by beginning this project. I’m not sure how it will develop but as exciting as most of 2012 turned out to be, I woke up today with a good feeling about 2013. Permit me a brief glance back to late October and two brief defining moments.
“What do you do for a living?” asked the young woman with a clipboard. I’d just seen two gay-themed documentaries in the Africa in the Picture program and she was surveying audience members. “I’m a writer,” I replied. The friend I was with raised her eyebrows. “What?” I asked. She said she’d never heard me describe myself that way before. But after a long summer in the States writing and rewriting, attending ThrillerFest, taking workshops and pitching to agents, all the things a writer does, my mind had finally made the leap. That’s what I was now. A writer. Interesting.
A few days earlier, one of my best friends from New York had called late at night. I’d seen him in June, knew was having some medical issues. But nothing could have prepared me for that phone call. He told me he’d just returned home from the hospital. There was nothing more that could be done. He was calling to say goodbye. He had only one last request. “Put me in one of your stories.” Of course I would. I was a writer. Maybe that’s when it really hit me, but I was too full of other thoughts to realize it just then.
I don’t intend this blog to be all about me, my writing, or even writing in general. Sometimes, yes. But for many years, I co-hosted a live two-hour LGBT program called Alien on Amsterdam’s MVS Radio. We reported gay and lesbian news, discussed all manner of queer issues, interviewed activists and authors, filmmakers and musicians. We told personal stories, and sometimes delved into material many would consider obscene. We weren’t always politically correct. Our free-wheeling anything goes platform was a lot like the blogging world today.
I thought of Alien this morning as I watched Graham Norton’s New Years Eve show on BBC, which I’d recorded. A certain famously short Hollywood actor was smugly telling Graham that he paid no attention to the often unflattering media reports about him. Ha! The very same actor we used to ridicule on Alien for threatening to sue anyone who suggested he was gay.
I’m not going to comment any further on such old news. But in future… I may express an opinion or two. And you may not always agree. Feel free to comment! I’m looking forward to some discussion.