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  • wildone

    Weekly Wrap Up (May 19 - May 25)

    By wildone

    Well I'm back A big thank you to Renee for stepping in last week whilst I was enjoying the Victoria Day Long Weekend. I know our American cousins are enjoying their Memorial Day Long Weekend this weekend. And correct me if I'm wrong, it is U.K. Spring Bank Holiday. So a lot of people enjoying either a short week last week or this week Before I forget, our list of Reader Recommended stories are nearly done. If you have read a story recently, in the past, or in the midst and it is finished,
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  1. wildone
    Latest Entry

    By wildone,

    Well I'm back :devil: A big thank you to Renee for stepping in last week whilst I was enjoying the Victoria Day Long Weekend. I know our American cousins are enjoying their Memorial Day Long Weekend this weekend. And correct me if I'm wrong, it is U.K. Spring Bank Holiday. So a lot of people enjoying either a short week last week or this week :)

    Before I forget, our list of Reader Recommended stories are nearly done. If you have read a story recently, in the past, or in the midst and it is finished, just send me the title and author in a PM.

    Well shall we get to the wrap up:

    Monday, we were introduced to a new Classic Author feature by the ever lovely Cia :)

    And par for the course, it is followed up on Wednesday with the Classic Author Excerpt by the even more lovely Cia :)

    Then, stop the presses, the fabulous Renee brought us the first round of the Spring Anthologies. 4 stories for you to enjoy, review and comment on.

    Anthologies

    • 2019 Fall Anthology: Fall From Grace - Due November 15th
    • 2019 Fall Anthology: Raincheck - Due November 15th

    Blog Opportunities

    • Ask An Author: Send your questions for your favorite authors to @Carlos Hazday (no questions = no Ask An Author)

    • Story Recommendations:  Open to all GA authors & readers. PM your recommendation and why you recommend it to a Site Admin.

    • Guess the Author: Open to all GA authors. PM @Renee Stevens to participate.

    • 3 Story Promo: Open to all GA Authors. PM @Renee Stevens to participate.

    • Author Interview: Open to all GA Authors. PM @Renee Stevens to participate.

    • Favorite Self-Written Story: Open to all GA authors. PM @Renee Stevens to participate.

    • Story Recommendations:  Open to all GA authors & readers. PM @Renee Stevens to participate.

    • Questions & Answers: Open to all GA authors, readers, and editors. Visit the thread and PM @Renee Stevens to participate.

    • Reader Recommended: Recommend a completed Poem/Story/Series for a short blurb at the end of the Weekly Wrap Up and PM @wildone to share your favourite stories.

    Premium Updates:

    The Passenger On Platform Six by Drew Payne

    Classic Updates:

    Nathan and the Chav Prince by Mike Arram

    Panic! by Dabeagle

    The Castaway Hotel: Next Generation Book 3 by Bill W

    Signature Updates:

    Adrift by Mann Ramblings

    Aria Graice by Nephylim

    Denied by Cia

    Flashpoint by CassieQ **2019 Spring Anthology Entry**

    Himmelszelt (Canopy of Heaven) by aditus **2019 Spring Anthology Entry**

    Finding Joy by AC Benus **2019 Spring Anthology Entry**

    My Only Escape by Comicality

    Prickly Prompts by aditus

    Translation Trashbin by AC Benus; Book 7 of Verse

    Promising Updates:

    Georgetown: Goodnight, My Angel by Carlos Hazday

    Here Kitty, Kitty by Caz Pedroso

    Hubris: Devon by Thorn Wilde

    Keep Quiet by albertnothlit

    Of God and Angels by Mikiesboy

    The Golden City by Aceinthehole

    Thorny Poetry by Thorn Wilde

    tim's Bits and Pieces by Mikiesboy

     

    **Reader Recommended**

    Recommended by @Timothy M.

     

     

    Don't forget.... Read, Write, and REVIEW!!!

  2. Wayne Gray
    Latest Entry

    There are many battles and many Hells.

    To those who have walked through their own torment and are still here - don't let anybody say that you "should just move on."

    Just because they've not been tested doesn't give them the right to belittle how hard you had to fight to survive.

    You're still here.  That makes you a warrior.  The others?  The ones who don't know?  Lucky them.  Let them sit cocooned in their soft world.

    But we know, don't we?

    Image may contain: 1 person, text that says 'Palavras & Reflerions my past is an armor I cannot take off, no matter how many times you tell me the war is over. Jessica Katoff'

  3. jamessavik
    Latest Entry

    If you haven't seen it yet, I've got a new story. It's quite a departure form my usual style. I usually don't include a lot of sexual content because unless it's balanced, that ends up being all there is.

    As I try to deliver a good story and maybe spark peoples interest in new things, I might as well experiment a bit. My plan is for four guys in the eighties to find each other and have adventures... and lot's of smoking hot sex along the way.

    I was stalled on another project and needed to put my head somewhere else for a while. This was fun and I like the characters. I hope y'all do to.

    Check it out. Maybe in private. :lugh: 😀

     

    -James

     

    The Company

  4. It is done.  They were able to place my Boy's headstone yesterday.  C's sis sent me an email at almost midnight last night that I didn't see until lunch today. It looks good. It feels....   relief?   I had really wanted / needed it to be installed before his birthday on Monday, and was afraid they weren't going to be able to do it because of the weather. His sis was wanting it done before his birthday as well.

    If the state doesn't wash away, I'll go down on Monday for his birthday, and be able to look at it first hand.

    💔

  5. Well, it's that time again!  Have you been looking for something to read? Wondering when the anthologies would start to go live? Well, wait no more!  Today we have 4 stories for you to enjoy, and each week I will make another set live. Enjoy!!! And don't forget to leave the authors feedback in the form of comments and reviews!


    spacer.png

     

    Himmelszelt (Canopy of Heaven)
    Aditus
     

    Finding Joy
    AC Benus

     


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    Flashpoint
    CassieQ
     

    The Visitor
    Rigby Taylor

     

     

     

  6. Did you catch Monday's blog sharing the ad and feature of this month's Classic author story, The Confrontation by Adam Phillips? This was another story chosen to go along with the Coming Out theme to kick off our promotion of Pride month, which is often what so many LGBT community members are thinking about when this time of year rolls around. How did it go in this story? Well...

    I chose this excerpt because it shows that first crucial moment and then the second... but you're left wondering if the third time is the charm or the time the decision will be ripped out of his hands and everything the character might face is too little too late. 

    Quote

     

    Just like that, the little bastard had reached in, torn out my heart, and ripped it up. When I received it, I sat staring at the words on the computer screen for five minutes. Well, what the hell did I expect? Then, with a sigh, I pressed "delete" and went about the process of shutting down the account.

    I didn't like it, but you know, life isn't always a joyride. My world was complicated and getting more complicated by the month. By the end of the year it promised to be chaos if I didn't clear my head. I needed to simplify things and try to get a grip. And I needed to get completely away from online contacts, especially contacts I'd fallen for.

    Easier said than done, of course.

    And anyway, part of me knew it was a sorry-ass thing to do, just walk away like that. But when he pulled away I was hurt and pissed. Didn't he understand that I wanted more than we had together as badly as he did? In the end, my anger won out, so I bailed. I told myself it was just a part of a general online housecleaning. I didn't have time to deal with all this internet shit at this stage of my life. Beyond this hopeless love story, there were "fans" I just didn't have time for anymore, people who expected me to take up serious online friendships with them just because they fell in love with the Me in my story. They could all go to hell.

    But to just walk away from Jay like that? What the fuck is wrong with you?

    "Shut up," I said to the voice. "I'm here, ain't I?"

     

    Want to read more? Click here

  7. I've been reading translated poems of Rilke lately, who is recognized as one of the most lyrically intense German-language poets. In the early 1900s, Rilke wrote letters to a young German military cadet who sought his guidance on his own poetry. These letters were poetry in their own right, dynamic and inspiring. The following is an excerpt from one such letter, which galvanizes the creative process, not exclusive to poetry or writing in my opinion, but for all forms of artistic self-expression: 
     
    “Go into yourself. Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depths of your heart; confess to yourself whether you would have to die if you were forbidden to write.

    This most of all: ask yourself in the most silent hour of your night: must I write? Dig into yourself for a deep answer. And if this answer rings out in assent, if you meet this solemn question with a strong, simple “I must,” then build your life in accordance with this necessity; your whole life, even into its humblest and most indifferent hour, must become a sign and witness to this impulse. Then come close to Nature. Then, as if no one had ever tried before, try to say what you see and feel and love and lose...

    ...Describe your sorrows and desires, the thoughts that pass through your mind and your belief in some kind of beauty - describe all these with heartfelt, silent, humble sincerity and, when you express yourself, use the Things around you, the images from your dreams, and the objects that you remember. If your everyday life seems poor, don’t blame it; blame yourself; admit to yourself that you are not enough of a poet to call forth its riches; because for the creator there is not poverty and no poor, indifferent place. And even if you found yourself in some prison, whose walls let in none of the world’s sounds – wouldn’t you still have your childhood, that jewel beyond all price, that treasure house of memories? Turn your attentions to it. Try to raise up the sunken feelings of this enormous past; your personality will grow stronger, your solitude will expand and become a place where you can live in the twilight, where the noise of other people passes by, far in the distance. - And if out of this turning-within, out of this immersion in your own world, poems come, then you will not think of asking anyone whether they are good or not. Nor will you try to interest magazines in these works: for you will see them as your dear natural possession, a piece of your life, a voice from it. A work of art is good if it has arisen out of necessity. That is the only way one can judge it.”
     
    ― Rainer Maria Rilke, from Letters to a Young Poet
  8. WARNING: Getting mildly graphic about my symptoms here, so don't read if that bothers you...

     

    I've not been around as much lately because I've been ill and I'm starting to worry. I've been almost constantly sick since before Christmas. I really thought I was finally better and then this throat infection took hold, the day after my birthday, no less. (Happy Birthday, Thorn! Here, have some more pain!) I'm tired. I don't sleep well. I wake up way before my alarm, feeling sick and miserable. For the third day in a row, I threw up first thing in the morning (today I made sure to down a glass of water before it happened so I wouldn't have to dry heave like I did yesterday). It's the mucus, coming down my throat from my nose, triggering my gag reflex. This happened before, a couple of months ago. I got some anti-emetics from my doctor but they're not working now. On the plus side (is there a plus side?), I'm getting some major exposure therapy for my emetophobia. 

    At this point, when I've been sick so much for such a long while, I can't help but wonder if there may be some underlying cause. What's happening to me? What's wrong with me? You know, aside from the obvious; the anxiety and depression and hypomania and all that. What's wrong with my body? Why is it like this?

    I think I need to see the doctor again. 

  9. Renee Stevens
    Latest Entry

    Wow, how the time flies. It's hard to believe that Baby J is just under 2 months shy of celebrating his first birthday! He is so active and is crawling, pulling himself up, and walking along the couch (or anywhere else as long as he has something or someone to hold onto!) We have baby gates all over the house, and so far they seem to be keeping the little guy mostly contained. And we now adapt whatever we're having for meals so that the little man can eat it too, with his 4 little teeth! Being a new mom is more than I ever expected, and so worth it. Especially when he gives me his big grin, or like the other night when I wasn't feeling good and Baby J just snuggled with me. Or he says mama or dada (the very occasional mommy and daddy). Of course, he has his grumpy boy moments, but they're usually only when he's tired or not feeling well. Luckily major meltdowns are few and far between.

    He's even been on his first major roadtrip. 17 Hour drive (one way) to meet his uncle, aunt, and cousins (we broke it up into 3 shorter days rather than 2 long ones to make it easier on him). Of course, everyone loved him, but Baby J really took to my brother. If my brother was home, Baby J was on his lap, or otherwise in the very near vicinity. 

    As you can probably tell, life has been busy. We're lucky that Baby J hasnt really been sick much, primarily only having the flu at one point and a short lasting stomach bug another one. I've been sick a little more, but D has been great about helping out around the house, especially when I'm not at my best. We may have finally got a few answers to everything that has been going on with me. Vitamin D deficiency counts for a lot of my issues, and most of what isnt caused by that are most likely caused by a stomach/esophagus sphincter hernia. Which basically means that the above named sphincter, that connects the esophogus and stomach, is loose and allows for reocurring reflux. Not great news, but it's mostly controllable with diet and reflux meds (though I'm not on a daily med for it at this point). Surgery isnt suggested to fix the issue unless it gets much worse than it is, as it would require a major surgery.

    So that's what's been going on here. Not much writing going on, as I simply cant seem to find the time and or ambition, but hopefully that will return in time. There have definitely been some ups and downs, but overall I cant complain too much. Hopefully I'll be able to return to GA on a more full time basis in the near future (is that a little optimistic considering Baby J is nearly a toddler?) But I have a great team to help with my GA duties, and I owe a huge thank you to all of them! Not going to name names, just in case I forget one, but Thank you, all of the help is greatly appreciated!

    Until next time!

    Cheers

    Renee

  10. Myr
    Latest Entry

    By Myr,

    First thing this morning, I applied a new Stories Archive software update.  This was a minor update that was mostly focused on bugs.

    • Added new feature on forum posts that shows how many Stories you have reviewed and how many story/chapter comments you have made
    • Added "Story Review Guidelines", "Story Comment Guidelines" and "Chapter Comment Guidelines" feature that pops up a box when clicked that can offer general site guidelines for posting comments and reviews.  If you click on them currently, you'll get "Coming Soon"
    • Added a story-only reputation count, that is currently only showing to staff.  We're working on getting that changed so that it shows to staff and the author.  This directly affects those in the story moderation queue and the automatic promotion out of it. 
    • When browsing by World, Series, or Story, miscellaneous media items will no longer appear in the list.  Only banners for promoted author groups will show.
    • The "Featured Story" that the staff pins on the first page of the story listing, will now properly not cover the story search bar for non-author groups.
    • On stories where there are many Authors, Editors and Beta Readers, they will now be listed alphabetically.  (Main Author is always listed first and additional authors are alphabetical)
    • Unpublished chapter count where dozens of chapters were listed as unpublished is now corrected.
    • The meta data on stories should now correctly reflect published chapter data not everything.  (error was seen where it would say there are 10 chapters, but only 6 would be visible)
    • Miscellaneous bug fixes.

    The only major feature still in the pipeline are the Statistics.  We've been collecting them since Jan 2018.  There are more than 18,000,000 hits since that time. The release of the new forum version that required a lot of rewriting, delayed it.  There are also a number of bugs, some of them very stubborn, that we're still working on.  Some of this is caused by the default behavior of the underlying software that we have to work around.  (double notification thing on reactions, for example)

    Stay Tuned and be sure to follow this blog.  It helps me track how useful people find these posts.

  11. comicfan
    Latest Entry

    By comicfan,

    Oops. Sorry was a bit off last night so Friday is starting off a bit late. However, there are new prompts for your consideration.

    Prompt 760 – Creative

    Tag – First Line

    “Because I said so!”

    Prompt 761 – Creative

    Tag – The Ex

    You’ve been busy with work and finally, have a night off. Deciding you don’t want to spend it in front of the television you go out. Barely out of your car you turn and knock someone off their feet. As you go to help them up you find yourself face to face with your ex. What happened next?

    See something you like? Take a shot and write a story. Remember to share it with us.

    'Til next time remember to read, write, comment, and like. Enjoy all.

     

  12. AC Benus
    Latest Entry

    Tanka:

    May rain falls upon

    Roses already in bloom –

    When Nature dictates

    Gilding Iilies, all is fair

    For hearts then at war with love.

     

    May rose.jpg

  13. Poems with an accent

    I like to write. However, why attempt to write in a language other than the one I learned first. One reason: Over 130 Million people speak German (https://www.deutschland.de/en/topic/culture/the-german-language-surprising-facts-and-figures)

    More than 3 Billion people speak/understand English. Duh.

    I’ve come a long way from

    There is a cat.
    The cat is fat.
    The cat lies on a mat.

    to my first novel long story written in English. Red Running Shoes.

    Which I could only accomplish with the tremendous help of my first editor @Lisa. I could write a whole essay about how much she helped me.

    Anyway, it doesn’t matter how it sounds when I read a story to myself. When one reads it in their head, they hear no accent. At least not my horrible accent. ;)

    Of course, I had to write poetry next. I blame @AC Benus and his poetry prompts. However, poetry is an entirely different matter than prose. There are those pesky things like meter, rhyme, and rhythm among other phonetic hurdles. Fear not, I won’t launch into an explanation of poetic devices now. There are people who are much more competent than I am.

    The point is: It is important how a poem sounds.

    I had this conversation with Irri about oregano of all things. In English it’s oregano. In German it’s oregano.  Depending on which language you hear in your head it can screw with meter. Better not try poetry?

    Once started, I couldn’t stop. To me, a poem is a condensed moment. A poignant thought. A clarified feeling and many more. And always a song.

    Since @Valkyrie introduced me to the NaPoWriMo challenge, I learned how the perspective of my world could change for a month, an interesting, and addictive experience.

    I know my poems are not perfect. I grudgingly stopped aiming for perfection some while ago. It has to feel right. Therefore, I stubbornly continue writing poems with an accent.

  14. I've been a member of GA now for almost ten years, which might as well be a lifetime in the internet. I was 17, closeted, confused, and was just looking for any kind of escape from the miserable existence of high school in a small town. I met so many great people in those early days through chat, where I would stay for hours talking about anything and everything with whoever was in there. I learned to refine my debating skills in the old Soapbox, where ironically I was one of the most vocal conservative members. I remember some of the early stories I read on here that touched me: Viv's All I Wanted, and Camilo's The Perks Of Loving You. I would eventually meet my first boyfriend on this site, and we were together for over 6 years before we parted ways. I met up with two other GA members while I was on a trip to London, and enjoyed great conversation over two dinners. 

    I recently ran into that ex-boyfriend in a bar in New York one random Saturday night. In a city of 8.6 million people, you oddly run into those you know. We hadn't really talked or seen each other in years. I didn't even know he was living there anymore, and to be honest I didn't really recognize him all that much initially (to be fair I was a few vodkas in). We said a quick 'hey, how's it going' and kept right on walking. At that moment and for the rest of the night what had just happened didn't really register. I went and found my boyfriend, and pretty much forgot it even happened. Fast forward a few days, and suddenly the whole encounter became incredibly strange to me. How could someone I dated for over six years and lived with for almost 2 seem like such a total, insignificant stranger now? At one point, he knew me better then anyone else, but now years removed, he might as well have been a passing acquittance. 

    I'm not wishing to get back with him, as we really weren't meant to be together long-term. It worked great as teenagers and early twenty-somethings, but adulthood exposed the flaws. I learned a lot from him, and applied all that to my relationships afterward. I guess it just goes to show the fragility of human relationships and how totally they can change. 

  15. Two weeks ago today, Renee brought us another edition of the new feature of Author Guess Who! 

    Well a lot weighed in and a few were pretty sure they knew who it was, or wasn't 0:), but today is the day for the big reveal!!!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Aditus

    And check out these two stories and many more of his amazing compliment of works!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  16. comicfan
    Latest Entry

    I have had a really hard time getting over a recent relationship.  I even have gone to therapy. 

    This weekend I was cleaning and my father noticed the boxes in front of the pictures I kept up from my ex. He opened it and found the rings I'd bought for us. He looked and noticed only one was engraved.

    "Why only one?"

    I looked and spotted what he was holding. I swallowed my feelings. "Because mine was engraved with my promises to him."

    He read it and walked out.

    Guess instead of love and forgive I should have just left it blank. I've packed them and the pictures of him and his family away. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. 

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    Recent Entries

    I've posted the first part of my fanfiction conclusion to With Trust, a story originally written and posted by DomLuka.

    I think With Trust is one of my favorite pieces of gay fiction; I've read it several times, and I was disappointed that it was never concluded. Not that I blame the author for not doing so - I have stories that I've not completed, I know what that's like.

    But I still wondered what happened to Nelson and Milo.

    The idea of running away to the boat at the end of the last chapter was tantalizing. But what kind of boat was it? A sail boat or a motor boat? For a long time I imagined that it was a sail boat, and they attempted to sail it away, maybe down to Florida; though in truth, I could never even work out where Heywell was; Google Maps hasn't heard of it.

    I began writing the story for my own amusement, and I started with the sail boat, and then things just fell into place as I wrote it. 

    With Trust - A Conclusion is in two parts. The second part should be posted in about a week.

  17. Before I really get into the reason I started writing down these random letters to form words that structure the following incoherent sentences that you are about to read, I want everyone to understand why I decided to write this in my Blog instead of responding in the forum thread where I first started ruminating on this topic. I am writing it here mainly because I think I’m going to offend a few people that read this and more than likely piss off the rest.

    A few months ago, I came across a topic in the Lounge that got the wheels in my tiny little brain a whirling. So much did my head spin around and around, that even all this time later, I’m still thinking about the topic.

    I really don’t remember who started the Topic all those months ago, and it’s really not important as it doesn’t really have anything to do with who started the topic but what path that topic got me traveling on.

    To the best of my ability, the topic was “Do You Identify as Gay?”. It also included a poll of three choices…I identify as part of the gay community, I identify as someone who has sex with the same gender, I identify as something else (please explain). Or something along those lines anyway.

    When I first read this topic, the results were as following…
    72.41% or twenty-one posters identify as part of the gay community
    13.79% or four posters identifying as someone who has sex with the same gender
    13.79% or four posters identifying as something else

    And for full disclosure, I identify as something else. This something else with the tagline, ( please explain), is the reason I am writing this today and the reason I have done more research about this topic in the last few months than I have in the last twenty years.

    I have never spoken to the person who started the topic, nor am I judging that person or anyone that participated in this particular thread. I believe there is something deeper here in regards to my own journey then the author or other posters intended.

    And let me preface this by saying, I am not attacking, judging, or refuting anyone that shared their own experiences in this topic. Nor am I discounting their beliefs or personal truths. I am only referencing them as it led me to a better understanding of my own self.

    Upon first reading this topic, I believe I understand what the motivation the author had when they created the poll and the questions they proposed. And without putting words in anyone’s mouth, I believe the intention was to see how the other members of GA viewed themselves in a larger, cultural way. And on the surface, I think it was a harmless question without malice.

    The post started off something like, “I’m curious to know how many people on here identify as part of the gay community versus how many just identify as having same sex attractions without feeling a part of the larger, cultural gay community”.

    I first read this question more of, ‘hey, tell me how you feel about your place or lack thereof in the gay community at large’. I don’t believe there is anything wrong with the question that was put forth. I felt, and still do after all this time; it was more a curiosity to see into the lives of other individuals and to understand how they might see themselves in a grander scheme of life as it pertains to the “gay community”.

    And after reading all the response, a particular comment stuck out from one user. And again, I might be paraphrasing, but the poster said something like, “I have come back to this post several times because it rather irks me. I am gay. However, I am not a member of gay clubs, sports, or other so-called gay organizations. The feeling I get reading this, is that unless I “join up”, me and the others like me, are really not gay”.

    This comment intrigued me, so much so that I started doing some research into the poster. And no, I wasn’t stalking that user, but I did find out while I was stalking him that he identifies as a Dom in a BDSM relationship.

    The user clearly stated that he did not feel part of the gay community because he refused to ‘sign up’. And a few posts later he added, “My lifestyle is even smaller. Mainly found in small clubs, and yes online. But even thought we have BDSM clubs, I am not a member. Though my husband and I live that way. Does that make me less a Dom? No, Not at all”.

    Please understand that I know absolutely nothing about this user except what I have read in that particular topic and I am not refuting what he feels. I know nothing about BDSM except surface facts nor do I care to learn about this…lifestyle for lack of a better term. I do know that it’s not for me even though I understand that the participants feel a need to experience their life in this way and that there is a strong bond of love and trust in regards to their relationships. I feel everyone is entitled to love however they find it. And this post is not about BDSM but rather about the feeling this poster voiced about community.

    Webster’s define community as: a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common.  It goes on with a second definition: a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals.  A few of the synonyms listed: group, body, clique, faction.

    When the user identified as gay but didn’t really have a connection to what most would call the gay community, preferring to just live their lives as they see fit and damn anyone that doesn’t agree with them. This statement got my little head spinning around. While this is an admirable trait, and one that I wholeheartedly agree with, it made me curious why he didn’t feel a connection to the greater gay community.

    I don’t know this user and didn’t feel comfortable enough to ask certain questions regarding BDSM and why this user didn’t feel a part of the community, so instead I went online and started doing research about the subject to see if I could get a better understanding of why he might have answered like he did and more importantly, why the question seemed to irritate him.

    And in my limited research about the subject, I found that most in a BDSM relationship identify first as a Dom or a Sub, then secondly as gay if they mention it at all. My understanding, BDSM is more important to how they live their truth than a label about sexuality. This seemed to be a logical reason why this user didn’t connect with the gay community.

    And yet it got me thinking why I don’t connect with the gay community though I live in San Francisco, seemingly the Mecca of gaydom for the United States and maybe for the rest of the world.

    I don’t have a lot of gay friends. And being gay does not now nor has ever really defined who I am as a human being. In my youth, I went to the clubs on the prowl for sex. I used more boys as dumpsters and playthings than ever made any real connections with the shallow people I met in those spaces. But that was a small part of biology, I was horny and wanted to find a release into the next willing receptacle but that wasn’t who I was or what I thought I should be. My community has always been those like minded individuals that share my same love of movies, video games, books, and historical places. At times, other gay people have fit that mold, but often as much, my friends are made up of all races, orientation, and gender.

    I have found in my travels, the “gay community at large” are shallow, promiscuous, addicts, that are too self absorbed to be good friends much less good human beings. And yes, before you get all angry, there are always exceptions. But go to any club on a Saturday night, and you’ll see rampant alcohol and drug abuse in the gay community, unsafe sex practices, and old men trying desperately to hang on to their youth by any means necessary.

    And if it seems like I’m judging them, maybe I am. But I don’t want to be associated with those types of humans. And it’s true, go to any straight club and you will see the same exact behavior which I think only proves that I don’t identify with them either.

    To get back to the user who identifies as BDSM, he would also say, ‘my lifestyle is even smaller’. He’s proud to say that he doesn’t belong to any BDSM clubs. He simply chooses to live out his best life with seemingly little regard for what others might think. This is a behavior I can support.

    Webster’s define lifestyle as: the way in which a person or group lives.

    The user is living his best life with someone who loves and respects him and for all purposes; he is living the lifestyle of a gay man. The user also used the phrase, ‘join up’. And this made me think about the grander implications of that statement.

    I feel that too many of our brothers and sisters are made to feel left out based on some of the marginal stigma surrounding certain lifestyles, especially if it’s on the fringe of the larger gay community. If the user, who identifies as a Dom, cannot feel like he’s a part of the gay community because he refuses to ‘join up’, then what does that say about this gay community? Is it because as humans, we tend to judge those that are different than us? If that’s the case, then we are no better than the homophobe that judges us because they do not understand us?

    To counter that point, the user that started the post topic and put forth the poll answers to begin with, stated, ‘For example, I personally identify as gay and very much feel a part of the larger gay community. Most of my friends are gay, I go to a mostly-gay gym, I play in a gay sports league, I go to gay bars/clubs/circuit parties, and whenever I travel I make it a point to check out the local gay scene. What I love about being gay in the cultural sense is that no matter where you go, you already have an established tribe/community that you can find support in through shared identity. I've found in my post-college years is that we are a community that tends to protect our own, and we've created our own institutions separate from the straight world to fulfill that purpose. It's ghettoization to an extent, but after living in the stuffy confines of straight life for so long, I've found that this much smaller community offers freedom to a level and in a particular way that people who aren't a part of it will never get to experience’.

    I think I could argue what the poster was referring to is not so much the ‘gay community’ but more of the gay lifestyle. Or what that perception of that lifestyle is from someone on the outside looking in. I do believe there is a certain perception of what most would call the gay community, and for a good portion of us, we would never identify ourselves in that manner.

    Urban Dictionary defines gay lifestyle as: a stereotype used by social/political conservatives to describe gay men being promiscuous, drinking, bar hopping, using drugs, cross-dressing, and orgies.

    Okay, I’ll be honest, the bit about cross-dressing made me laugh so hard I almost choked to death when I read it. But can you honestly say, you have never thought the same exact thing at least privately in your own brain. To most, the gay lifestyle doesn’t describe us much less define us. I have often lamented that who I choose to sleep with is such a small part of what makes me…me…that I rarely talk about it. I don’t go to Pride, I don’t participate in circuit parties, I don’t have orgies, nor do I have random encounters using phone Apps. That is not my lifestyle, nor has it really been.

    So why am I writing this? It’s not to bash the author of this topic, nor the user that doesn’t identify as a member of the gay community. The reason I wrote this and the reason I have been thinking about this topic for months, is because I was looking at this through the wrong lens.

    There was a time when gay individuals needed to bond together, first for safety, and then for support from a world that didn’t really accept us. And yes, having that support system truly saved who knows how many lives over the last decades. How many young people who didn’t commit suicide because they found a place that was safe for them to live their truth and find happiness within those communities? How many of the younger generation can go to proms with their same sex partner now all over the country? How many states have legalized same sex marriage? So much has changed for the gay community just in the last ten years that I never thought I would see in my lifetime. And thankfully, it has changed.

    Yet I truly believe one of the worst things we can do as a community is retreat into our gay clubs, gay bars, gay sports leagues, and leave the rest of the world behind. We didn’t affect change by hiding in the shadows. We changed the country because we got out in the light and demanded that we needed to be treated first as humans, with the same rights as all other humans, then by allowing straight people who didn’t know any better that we have the same goals, values, and desires that all humans possess. Who we sleep with is irrelevant in the grand scheme of life.

    My community, as defined by Webster, has always been made up of a fellowship of likeminded individuals that share my same attitude, goals, and life values. That is my community, and like most communities across the country, it’s not a gay community, it’s not a straight community, it’s a mix of beautiful humans that all strive to achieve a better life for those they love, and for those as yet unborn.

    I have seen a lot of ‘gay communities’ that do not share my same values and goals. And I will not be a part of them just because they also happen to sleep with other men. That would be like saying, I will only vote for this particular person because they also have the genetic coding that made their eyes blue like mine. Eye color and genital preference is so far down on my list of priorities in those I choose to surround myself with its practically nonexistent.

    If you find a gay community that shares your same attitudes, goals, and values, than great, you might have found the ideal life. But don’t get so hung up on only participating in ‘gay communities’ just because there are gay people there. Instead, create your own communities by including all people that share your values, embrace those that can bring something positive in your life and exclude all those, even the gay ones that would drag you down.

    Gay or straight, all communities are made up of humans first, and most of us are a wonderful, kind, generous, honest, loving, and accepting group that can do extraordinary things when we share a common purpose.

    I know that my thoughts might not be for everyone who reads them. And that’s okay. We are all on different places in our walk of life. I do know that over the last few months my perception of community changed and I believe I am a better person for it. So I thank whoever started this topic, and those that contributed to the thread as they all helped me come to a better understanding of who I am as a human and where I want to go.

     

    J

  18. BlindAmbition
    Latest Entry

    Hey Guys,

     
    I want to thank all who have reached out. It’s greatly appreciated. Even if I don’t verbalize it.
    Update on my anxiety progress. There’s been noticeable improvement with my anxiousness on the new meds. I’m not obsessing on everything said and done. Going out is proving difficult, but I am going out. Keeping a routine to help overcome my recent fear.
    While meds address my anxiety... They have shown some side affects. Disconnected and in the clouds. Leaves me feeling like I have no control. Lack of concentration has been extremely difficult... Especially when I’m accustomed to a strict, structured life.
    While I do my daily meditation and lists, focus dictates everything.
    I’ve been struggling to write. The one thing I always turn to, but I’ve hit a block. Writing journal has felt like a chore, because I hear therapist on repeat.
    A very dear friend asked me to write something. I’m working on it. I appreciate her effort in me finding motivation and inspiration.
    My therapist told me to write what you know. I have been having difficulties verbalizing. Until today. Ah-ha moment.
    Accountability has been thrown out a lot lately. My therapist telling me to be accountable to her and myself.
    Writing an email today brought out this word again.
    I’m being accountable by writing what I know. Accountability weaves through all that I am. I thrive, and survive on it.
    My lifestyle depends on me being accountable. My focus depends on me being accountable. My confidence depends on me being accountable. Everything depends on it.
    Sorry for the rambling, but a brief moment found my voice. That’s progress for today.
  19. mad_artist
    Latest Entry

    i'd bleed for you

    if that's what it took

    to show my allegiance 

     

    even if you didn't demand it

    i'd still bleed for you

    to prove my obedience

     

     

    • 1
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    Recent Entries

    1KiCB1y.jpg

     

     

    Musical Outline
    ~~~~~~~~~~

    1. Eros (Chris Spheeris) - Eros Pays A Visit
    2. Wasting Time (Day Wave) - Adorable Dithering
    3. Kokkino Garifalo (Nikos Ignatiadis) - A Love Letter From Greece
    4. Komorebi  - Seeing The Sun Through Leaves In A Whole New Way
    5. Kardia Spasmeni (Giannis Vorgias) - Is It Really For Real?
    6. Write My Name (CHPTRS) - Dimi’s Poetry - Main Love Theme
    7. The Beauty Of Your Virginity (Irene Papas, Vangelis) - Beautiful Shane 
    8. A Kiss In The Dark (The Jovian Channel) - You Only Need Touch
    9. Min Anisiheis (Giorgos Sabanis) - Never Worry
    10. Venus As A Boy (The Dietrichs) - What Dimi Is
    11. Without Words (Joseph of Mercury) - Being Left Without Words
    12. Write My Name (Alt Instrumental) (CHPTRS) - Love Theme Reprise

    ~~~~

    Eros (Chris Spheeris) - Eros Pays A Visit

    Guitar Instrumental Overture

     

    Wasting Time (Day Wave) - Adorable Dithering

    Come down

    I won't come back down

    I'm too burnt out

    Again

     

    And I know

    I've done this before

    I'll just fall out

    Again

     

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all way

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all away

    Follow in your footsteps

    I'll keep going on

    Again

     

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all way

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all away

    Come down

     

    I won't come back down

    I'm too burnt out

    Again

     

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all way

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all away

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all way

    I'm wasting all my time

    I push it all away

     

    Kokkino Garifalo (Nikos Ignatiadis) - A Love Letter From Greece

    Translated ‘Red Carnation’ - An Instrumental of a classic Greek love song

     

    Komorebi  - Seeing The Sun Through Leaves In A Whole New Way

    An instrumental for seeing Komorebi, an untranslatable Japanese word for how sunlight through the leaves of a tree look like water shimmering in the sun.

     

    Kardia Spasmeni (Giannis Vorgias) - Is It Really For Real?

    Translated as ‘Broken Heart’

     

    Write My Name (CHPTRS) - Dimi’s Poetry - Main Love Theme

    You say I'm the only one you would never be without

    I've found you're the only one worth ever singing ‘bout

     

    Will you write my name in your heart?

    Write my name in your heart.

     

    Though strangers among us crumble, all we've figured out

    I've found you're the only one I hold on to in the doubt

     

    And you write my name in your heart . . . 

    Write my name in your heart

     

    (oh, oh, oh…)

     

    And I'll see you again

    See you again

    See you again

     

    Will you write my name in your heart?

    Write my name in your heart!

     

    The Beauty Of Your Virginity and The Splendor Of Your Purity (Irene Papas, Vangelis) - Beautiful Shane 

    An old Greek devotional hymn that fits ‘Beautiful Shane’ perfectly.

     

    A Kiss In The Dark (The Jovian Channel) - You Only Need Touch

    Everyone was there from all around town

    To kick the summer off hard and loud

    And in the crowd you managed to stand out

    Took a minute and we laughed out loud

    No other people seemed to matter somehow

    I felt for certain you were the one

     

    I swear I could see shooting stars

    When you leaned in and stole my heart

    When the chorus hit we had it all

    Wouldn’t care if the world fell apart

    Nothing missing but the fire is ours

    A Kiss In The Dark

     

    Just as quick as we met we said ‘bye’

    Because he said he had to leave this town

    And the summer just flew right by

    It’s an extraordinary thing that stays

    A lantern that stays on for life

    In the memory of that night

     

    I swear I could see shooting stars

    When you leaned in and stole my heart

    When the chorus hit we had it all

    Wouldn’t care if the world fell apart

    Nothing missing but the fire is ours

    A Kiss In The Dark

     

    Min Anisiheis (Giorgos Sabanis) - Never Worry

     

    Translated as: ‘Don’t Worry’

     

    Venus As A Boy (The Dietrichs) - What Dimi Is

    His wicked

    Sense of humor

    Suggests

    Exciting sex!

     

    His fingers

    They focus on him

    Touches

     

    He's Venus as a boy

    He believes in a beauty

    He's Venus as a boy

     

    He's exploring

    The taste of his

    Arousal

    So accurate

     

    He sets off

    The beauty in him

     

    He's Venus

    Venus as a boy

     

    He believes in a beauty

    He's Venus as a boy

     

    Without Words (Joseph of Mercury) - Being Left Without Words

    See my eyes

    Feel my fingertips

    They know

    What to say

     

    Hear me

    Without Words

    Without sound

    Is there a way to you?

     

    You only need touch

    To know us

    You only need touch

    To know us

     

    See my eyes

    Feel my love for you

    It can never fade

    I’m there when I close my eyes

    Spinning in clouds of light

     

    Nothing ever can compare

    To us

     

    Nothing ever can compare

    To us

     

    I wouldn’t try

    I wouldn’t try

     

    You only need touch

    To know us

    You only need touch

    To know us

     

    Write My Name (Alt Instrumental) (CHPTRS) - Love Theme Reprise

    Instrumental of main love theme

  20. Gay Authors Articles

    Comicality
    Latest Entry

    By Comicality,

    One element of storytelling that really makes a difference when writing is the ability to immerse your readers into the world that you are trying to create. Now, that pretty much goes without saying, of course...but one thing that I’ve learned over time is that this immersion works better when there’s a balance between ‘imagination’ and ‘information’. (I hope I’m saying that right. Let me explain...)

    As I’ve stated in previous articles on my writing process, I always think of storytelling as a symbiotic relationship between the writer and the reader. We are both creating this story in different ways. One way is in my head, and one way is in theirs. It’s sort of like having a dancing partner, where I may be leading, but we both need to participate to make it the graceful expression it was meant to be. So, with my stories, I’m always trying to involve the reader’s imagination in what is going on. Visual cues and actions that allow them to build a mini movie in their heads as they read along. Meanwhile, I’m also attempting to tell the story that I want to tell. I have to deliver a certain amount of information so that everybody is on the same wavelength in terms of what’s going on. The best way to do this, in my opinion, is through dialogue. Narration and prose from a writer gets to be an old trick after a while, and I find dialogue to be a much more interesting way to get certain plot points across to your audience instead of just long explanations from the writer that doesn’t involve and active participation from the story’s main characters. However...sometimes that can create a slight problem.

    If anyone thinks that an extremely long monologue from one main character to another main character is going to be seen as anything different from author narration...you would be mistaken. Hehehe! You’ve got to remember...readers are savvy to those tricks in this day and age. They are devouring hundreds of hours of media every single day. They know exposition when they hear it. And while you may just have to say, “Screw it! it’ll just have to be exposition, then!” every now and again...there are still a few magic tricks up the authors’ sleeve that can help with this.

    First things first...try to break the ‘monologue’ temptation if you can. This is when you want to explain a character’s motivations or big plot points of the story, and the other characters is basically like, “Well, sure...let me tell you all about it.” And then he or she ends up talking for 75 paragraphs in a row to break down the entire story in one sitting without ever taking a breath. Hehehe, yeah, that’s not a good idea. What is the other character doing while all of this is going on? Does he just sit down on a carpet with his legs crossed like a kindergartner getting a bedtime story? What’s happening here?

    Think about it. What would you do if you casually asked somebody how their day was going, and that led to a 45 minute explanation? Would your mind wander? Would you find that strange? Would you get frustrated after a while? Well...you readers would too. When it comes to exposition dialogue and drawn out explanations that you feel need to be included in your story, always keep in mind that your audience’s attention span can be easily broken if you don’t throw in an occasional change up every now and then. It doesn’t mean that the information is boring or that anything is wrong with your story...it just means that you would do better to cut it up into bite size pieces first. That’s all.

    As with most of these little writing tips, this isn’t hard to accomplish. It’s just hard to notice if you’re not looking for it.

    The easiest way to do this in a dialogue is to simply keep in mind that two people are having this conversation. Involving the secondary character in the discussion can be much more involving. Say...you have an astronaut landing on Mars for the first time...and he runs into an alien being. Well, what the…??? How is this possible? How did we not know you aliens existed? How did you hide yourselves from us all this time...and why? The alien may say (In perfect English...which is a whole other explanation in itself!), “My Earthling friend...let me tell you all about it.” And that can end up being a monologue that goes on for pages and pages without end. Word to the wise...readers will mentally and emotionally check out if you hit them with an unbroken wall of text telling that whole story in one go. I’m assuming you guys don’t want that.

    Get your astronaut involved! He’s completely oblivious as to what is going on here. Have him ask questions. Have him be shocked or maybe even negatively react to what he’s being told. Have him make comments of his own. Play both sides of the conversation in a way that will keep a momentum going in your story. Have them both learn something along with your readers. A simple ‘back and forth’ can save you from the infamous ‘ton of bricks’ wall of text that a percentage of your readers might get bored with or just skip altogether to get back to the meat of the story.

    It sucks to have to think about these things sometimes, but I’ve found that it helps to keep this as a rule in the back of your mind.

    That’s the ‘information’ part of the equation, and that’s in the hands of the writer. Here’s where we can use the ‘imagination’ part of this to keep readers interested as they visually picture the scene unfolding in front of them.

    This part doesn’t take any dialogue at all, or even a back and forth with another character if that isn’t an option for that particular scene. It’s just a matter of using your talents as an author to paint a picture and put it into motion. You’ve spent all of this time thinking about the information that you want to deliver to the people reading your story, and you’ve got someone talking about it, acting as a vessel for the big message you’re trying to push out there, right? Well, what’s happening while that character is doing that? Think about it...when you talk to anyone at length in real life (AFK)...what else is going on during that time. Take a moment and think about it.

    What are you looking at? What are your hands doing? Are you standing up? Are you sitting down? Do you look around the room? Do you speak up, or do you lower your voice, depending on whatever it is being discussed? Are you guzzling a soda, sucking on a cough drop, staring at your cell phone? What’s going on? Use those details in your story. Break up that dialogue with visual actions that your readers can see, hear, feel, and relate to. Make a virtual movie out of it.

    I want you guys take a look at this opening scene from the movie “Pulp Fiction”. I truly believe that one Quentin Tarantino’s most amazing signature talents is his flair for dialogue. There are times when he can turn the most random, off topic, conversations into a work of art. But, beyond that...I want you to take notice of what the actors are doing with this scene, and think about how you would write it into a story if you had to.

    Here it is...

     

    Now, if you guys were to close your eyes and just listen to this...the whole scene is just dialogue, dialogue, dialogue. It’s two people sitting in a restaurant booth, discussing a robbery scheme. However, look at everything else that’s going on in this scene. Pay attention to what the actors are doing here during the conversation. The visuals. They are not just sitting there discussing a robbery. They are in motion. They are displaying emotions. They are giving each other clues. They’re...in a word...’alive’ in this scene. When you’re writing, I’ve always found it important to bring a certain life to the conversations as they’re happening.

    These two people are doing things that can be described in your writing. They lean in to look each other in the eye. One might take a drag off of his cigarette, or clip the ashes off into the ashtray. Take a sip of coffee, smile at the waitress, lay their head on the table, put his foot up on the seat, speak in a hushed tone...these are all things that you can use to break up the monotony of an extended scene of dialogue when writing your story. Even if you have a ton of information to deliver in that once scene...you can ‘jazz it up’ a little bit by adding a sense of motion to what’s being said. Maybe you write a few sentences of dialogue...and then the speaking character walks over to take a look out of the window. Write a few more sentences, then he looks back over his shoulder and, with a wave of his hand, silently offers the other character a seat. Maybe they’re sharing a drink, or eating a snack. Maybe one of them has a nervous twitch or a habit of tapping his foot under the table. Flesh out the rest of the scene around the dialogue and try to create a mental picture of what’s going on around your characters...all while distracting your readers from the fact that, “Geez, they sure are talking a lot!” Hehehe!

    Long blocks of one character shoving an entire history lesson down the throats of your readers can be exhausting. Visuals, I feel, help to change things up a little bit. Not only to break up the dialogue blocks, but to add little quirks and nuances to your characters. Allow their natural personalities to shine through in their actions. Someone who’s full of anger may pace back and forth, make threatening gestures, or might invade another character’s personal space in a challenging manner. Someone who’s timid or shy may have trouble looking another character in the eye, and may direct his gaze down at his shoes instead. He may mumble his words under his breath. He may twiddle his fingers nervously while searching for the right words. These are all tiny little activities, sure...but sprinkling these seemingly insignificant actions throughout a meaty conversation can bring a whole new feel to that particular scene, and it will keep your readers engaged and searching for more hints and clues to pick up on with your characters, while still absorbing all of the information that you have to deliver to them. Trust me, it works. :)

    So, to wrap this up...

    Information – Try to avoid heavy narration or a dialogue that no character in real life would ever bother to sit through after a few minutes or so. Break it up by involving both parties and try to swing back and forth between characters...with one asking pertinent questions, and the other character answering them. It’s just enough of a change up to keep people from getting bored.

    Imagination – Add visual and ‘action’ to what your characters are doing in any given scene where their personalities are being developed, or where a heavy dose of information has to be given all in one go. Have them bashfully brush their long hair out of their eyes, have them bite their fingernails, or constantly look up at the clock to see what time it is. These micro-actions can say a lot about your character, and it can keep things active while giving your readers the amount of information that they need to move on to the next part of your story.

    Watch the “Pulp Fiction” Opening again. It’s the perfect blend of both sides. Put THAT in your writing, and you can’t go wrong!

    Alright, that’s all I’ve got for you this time! And as always, I hope this helps you guys to be the best writers as you can!

    Take care! And I’ll seezya soon with more!

     

  21. quokka
    Latest Entry

    Hey All

    Just letting you know, that I am currently setting up a website.

    quokka63.wixsite.com/home 

    Please feel free to check it out.

    Regards Q

  22. MichaelS36
    Latest Entry

    I must say I struggled with this one. And I am sorry there is only one. However, here it is and it has been hopefully improved somewhat after a talk with AC.  This one is about our last trip to the hospital …

     

     

    I force you to the hospital

    and you won’t recall it

    you fight me like a frightened thing

    because you are hurting

     

    You, my love are so very strong

    yet you are made of glass

    the hidden flaws begin to show

    widening tiny cracks

     

    As I pace the long corridor

    fearing for your future

    wondering if you'll be the same

    or now forever changed

     

    Once you finally awaken

    groggy from all the meds

    I am allowed to sit with you

    and hold onto your hand.

     

    Your life has been so very hard

    I want for you some peace

    respite from the haunting specters;

    some quiet blessed sleep

  23. Razor
    Latest Entry

    Sometimes I be sitting here and I just think how surreal and strange life really is.  I never imagined I would be sitting in Mobile, AL, with a stranger's liver, trying to find purpose in my life.  I suppose it just goes to show that for all your careful planning and preparation, everything could be terribly doomed before you ever even start.  Hard pill to swallow.  I don't necessarily believe in fate, but I do think that sometimes coincidence is just too coincidental.  

     

    This may be a psychological phenomenon materializing because I feel guilty for past choices, or useless, or sad, or any number of things.  I've been killing off people in my social circles left and right lately.  I basically keep to myself, which is probably not healthy at all.  I have panic attacks when I'm faced with people (and btw, before anyone says a damn word, just because you don't see it on my face does not mean I am not anxious, I am a pro at remaining calm, I could fool God himself questioning me about my deepest sins).  I don't even like going to the gas station or a grocery store, it makes me terribly nervous, like someone is going to hit me or reprimand me or chase me out.  

     

    What the hell is with that?  I know I'm generally speaking a decent person, I'm not physically unattractive, but I feel LESS than others.  I could meet a stranger on the street and my natural action is to defer to them, when I know for a fact I'm usually the most capable and competent person in any given situation.  I'm not tooting my own horn here, I just know I'm... I can make shit happen.  

     

    Which brings me to the weirdness.  The all enveloping, omnipresent weirdness.  I feel like I look at my life and people around me as if through a pane glass window.  I can see it, but it isn't there physically, it isn't there viscerally, I can't feel it, I can't touch it, I can't allow myself to be consumed by the moment.  As a result, I feel sort of abandoned.  I'm just an onlooker.  

     

    I am a bird watcher of humans.  A human watcher.  I am emotionally and physically detached.  I can't feel it anymore.  I would kill for one moment of feeling alive again, I just want to breathe deep and smell something I've never smelled, I want to see things I've never seen, I want to look at a boy and fall in love with his face and see the kindness and hope and possibility in his eyes.  I want to see him and see something that I can live for.  

     

    Does humanity have a safe word?  Like if we just get in too deep in this shit, can we just say "GRAPEFRUIT!" and then someone comes and gets us?  'Cause I been screaming grapefruit for the past year and no one has come.  

     

    Okay, I have ranted enough.  I am sorry for my ramblings.  I wish you all the best, and I hope that your lives are great.  If there has been one thing that I've learned in the last year or two, it has been to allow people their own thoughts and feelings and to never hold it against them.  Take care, my lovelies.  

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