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Drew Payne

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847 I Make This Look Easy

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About Drew Payne

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    London, England

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  1. Happy Birthday Drew!

    1. Drew Payne

      Drew Payne

      Thank you.

      We've had a lovely, relaxing day watching Netflix and eating chocolate cake (And I've been writing).

      A perfect day for me.


  2. Drew Payne

    Table Talk

    I wanted to, I had to write this story about the lasting damage done by the ex-gay movement. When I wrote the first draft of this story there were a lot of people (LGBT people) claiming the ex-gay movement didn't do any real harm because once people left it they were able to come out. I actually heard this said more than once. I wanted to show how the damage carries on even after the person has left the ex-gay movement behind. And I wanted to show the potential healing power of the LGBT community.
  3. Drew Payne

    Dinner Date

    Thank you, that's what I wanted for this chapter. This story, so far, has been so down and depressing, I couldn't carry on like that, I had to show that there is a way out of this screwed up life.
  4. Drew Payne

    Table Talk

    @Marty, thanks for your feedback, especially about the ending. I wanted to show Chris moving on but not give him a huge, romantic ending. It would have been so out of character with the rest of the story, and Chris is still a very screwed up character here. With his relationship with Ryan, I wanted to show a maturity beginning to happen with Chris, showing him now being able to read situations and not get too hung up on them. The therapist's line was taken from real life, word-of-word. I went to see an amazing therapist (I directly copied her for this story) and that is what she said to me when I'd got up the courage to tell her what had happened to me, as a teenager. When she said those words it was like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. She didn't say that I could take something positive from it, she didn't say that it was years ago so I should put it behind me, she just acknowledged the pain I had been through. She was the first person to do that. In my professional life I do the same thing now, whenever patients tell me something painful or distressing, I don't try to find something positive to say, I just acknowledge their pain. I leant from the best. I will be coming back to Chris but in a much different story. I have wanted to write about the politics behind the ex-gay movement for years but hadn't found a way in. From comments to this story, I realised that Chris was my way in, but a very different character from here. He's matured and dealt with his own pain. But as I say, when I get the time to do that. I've got several other things I want to write first.
  5. Drew Payne

    Dinner Date

    This chapter just flowed when I first wrote it and every time I've gone back to it I've enjoyed reading and re-writing it, especially Kay's sense of humor. Since I created her I knew she was going to be important, and it can't be understated that the effect the Pride chapter had on her. Kay saw first hand how The Release Trust had effected Chris, so she is behind this meeting. She knows meeting her brother will help Chris, and her girlfriend is a mental health nurse. I do like Kay, and she will be back. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but the ending is very typical of my writing. But I'm already working ideas for a sequel and a prequel to this story, I now just need to find the time to write them.
  6. Drew Payne

    Round Two

    Will isn't right for Chris and him for Will, they have nothing in common, and it should have been something short-lived were both parties walked away realising they weren't boyfriend material. But Chris is so desperate for a lover that he hangs onto Will far too long. It takes him so long to be honest with Will. That's what I meant by with toxic. Chris did make the right decision to end this relationship, but it took far too long. He should have been honest with Will much earlier.
  7. The second and final chapter of my story The Passenger on Platform Six is up and can be read at:


    It is not giving the plot away to say that Owen, the central character here, arrives in London, but this story is far more about the journey, both physically and emotionally, and the story is how Owen reached his move to the capital.

    Happy reading.

  8. Drew Payne

    Round Two

    I wrote this chapter to show another side to Chris's toxic relationships, this time showing him screwing up the relationship even when the guy is attracted to him. Chris's poor self-image is what I wanted to explore here, and yes it's related to his upbringing. He was given unrealistic goals (Being told he has to change his sexuality in order to be accepted) and when he failed he was blamed for it. That will certainly destroy your self-esteem, and building up self-esteem is more than just someone saying you're cute, once. So much of this story is about the wrecked self-esteem the ex-gay leaves behind and how toxic on an individual it is. At this moment, all I can feel that Chris can learn is that again he's crap at relationships, but the events of the next two chapters do change something for him, but I won't say what.
  9. Drew Payne


    Marty, I am so humbled by how much this story of mine has touched you. As a writer, I always want my writing to touch and move people but when it happens I always feel so moved and small. I originally wrote this story to say "look at the effect that the ex-gay has on people" and as I reply to the people who said that everything was better once you'd left them behind and come out. I also wrote it to help me put my experiences in perspective. I never thought that this story would resonate with so many people. I was two years old when homosexuality was partially decriminalised in England and Wales, but I grow up in the seventies and eighties, with all the homophobia and open hatred of LGBT people. I still shudder when I think back to then. In the last few, I have read a lot about life pre the 1967 act, and God it was awful. The repression and homophobia was breath-taking. I admire anyone would lived through all that and came out of it half-sane. As for what happens to Chris, Spoilers! Spoilers! I have a policy of no spoilers in my comments, and God that is hard, it really is. But please keep reading, at the end is a brief piece about what lead me to write this story.
  10. Drew Payne

    Park Life.

    Back in 2015, there was a big ex-gay conference in London and they were trying to paint themselves as a caring-and-sharing organisation. I wrote an opinion piece for a British nursing magazine about my experiences in an ex-group group. I was so surprised at all the support I received from that piece, all those straight women and men denouncing the ex-gays. I have learnt the power of words and stories, and it's wonderful.
  11. Drew Payne

    Park Life.

    This was the first part of the story I actually wrote (With some of the text in it from the next part), as a single short story, until someone else read it and suggested I expand it into a longer story. I have re-written it so much since then, but it was based on an original encounter. Many years ago (decades actually), at London Pride, I saw a group of men handing out ex-gay leaflets. Some people were laughing at them, others getting angry at them. I didn't approach them but I felt really uncomfortable that they were there, they'd invaded my enjoyment of Pride. The Release Trust is a made-up name, to stop me from getting sued, but it is very much based on a real organisation, and I've used it in several pieces of fiction. In 2014 I got involved in a Private Members Bill in the British Parliament to make Gay Conversion Therapy illegal here too. It was sponsored by a straight MP, but he had a gay assistant. Unfortunately, it didn't get anywhere because of the 2015 election and because neither of our two main parties supported. We now have a government throwing our country away on Brexit, and only being able to focus on that, and a Prime Minister, who is also a Christian, wants Christian Values protected and wants to scrap our Human Rights Act. So I don't see Gay Conversion Therapy being banned here any time soon, and as a Healthcare Professional I am disgusted. P.S. I love the picture.
  12. Drew Payne

    Park Life.

    Thank you. I wanted to get over Chris, the narrator's expectation and his attempt at subtle seduction, which he isn't very good at.
  13. Drew Payne

    Round One.

    Thanks, please do keep reading. This opening part is to set up one part of Chris's personality, his need for a relationship. The following parts explain more about him.
  14. Drew Payne

    Table Talk

    @Parker Owens, please don't hurt for me. I am very fortunate, I have a very happy life. I have a job I enjoy, a home I love and a husband who makes me so happy. I am very fortunate. I went through hell as a teenager and in my twenties, but I found people who helped me. That was what I wanted to write about here, that the damage doesn't stop when you escape the ex-gay movement. But not showing Chris at least beginning to deal with the damage done to him would not have been honest, there is a way out of this mess but it isn't easy. I couldn't give Chris that romantic happy ending because it would not have felt honest. He has PTSD and at the end of this story he's only just learning to manage friends, but I had to give him a hopeful ending, I had to say there is a way out of this mess.
  15. Drew Payne

    Table Talk

    @lomax61, I wanted to show Chris maturing in his relationship with Ryan, as he starts to deal with the damage done to him. Ryan isn't attracted to him but their friendship is something good, and Chris now has the maturity to accept it. This is a far more stable character than he was in the first part of this story. The four main characters fire-bombing The Release Trust's head office is a wonderful idea (Certainly makes me happy) but is out of character for them, and Nina would put her registration at risk. For the sequel, I want to write about the politics of the ex-gay movements, which would be a rather dark look. I've wanted to write about this for quite a while and returning to this story has shown me that Chris, and the other characters here, are the right ones to write it through, with some new characters. Just, God knows when I'll get the chance to do it but I now have a schedule of things I want/need to write and that is firmly on the list.
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