Tag: Until Thanksgiving

Aug 20, 2014
By Michael Rupured

Happy Independence Day Release Party & Blog Tour

Dreamspinner Press has officially released my third novel, Happy Independence Day. The story features the relationship between Terrence Bottom and Cameron McKenzie and is set in June 1969, a few years later than the prequel, After Christmas Eve, and about 225 miles farther north. Much of the action occurs in and around the infamous Stonewall Inn on New York City’s Christopher Street. The riots play a big role in the story. Contrary to legend, the Stonewall Uprising wasn’t the first volley in the battle for homosexual rights in the United States or even the first riot involving homosexuals. In August 1966, transgender people rioted at the Compton Cafeteria in the Tenderloin district of San Francisco. Homophile organizations such as Chicago’s …

Jun 02, 2014
By Michael Rupured

Five Steps to Becoming a Successful Author

On this date just two short years ago, with a lot of encouragement from my friends in the Athens Writers Workshop, I submitted a query for my first novel. I waited for the “not what we’re looking for at this time” message to file with the rejections I’d already received for Glass Houses — my still unpublished memoir. Instead, less than three months later, the fine folks at Dreamspinner Press sent me a contract for Until Thanksgiving. When I signed that first contract, my expectations about overnight success as a published author were a tad unrealistic. I haven’t quit my day job. You won’t find excerpts from my books in The New Yorker. Terry Gross hasn’t interviewed me for Fresh Air, nor has Oprah called. Even …

Sep 16, 2013
By Michael Rupured

Two at Once

For me, writing a novel is a lot like a relationship. Managing more than one at a time is just too complicated for my simple mind. Yet, despite my usual single-mindedness of purpose, I’m currently working on two novels. After writing the first two books in the holiday series, I wanted to try something different. Adventures in Trauma Car is a first-person coming-of-age story very loosely based on my life. Figuring I knew the story well enough not to need an outline or character sketches, I forged ahead. But 30,000 words in, I hit a wall. I’d changed things up so much that any resemblance to my life had disappeared. I hit this wall with every book I write. The story …

Aug 19, 2013
By Michael Rupured

What’s In A Name?

One of the first critiques of an early draft of my debut novel was that the names of the characters seemed random, like they’d been pulled from a hat. The comment surprised me. You mean there’s another way? The right name is a beautiful thing. That’s why parents spend so much time thinking about what to call their little bundle of joy. As a writer, I have a huge advantage over parents. I know how my children turn out in the end. My only rule had been to avoid picking names starting with the same letter. Telling James’s story in After Christmas Eve did lead me to add another rule. No more names ending with the letter S. The possessive is just too …

Aug 05, 2013
By Michael Rupured

My Holiday Series

I had no idea when I wrote Until Thanksgiving that a prequel would follow. The idea of writing a novel was intimidating enough — never mind a series. But something about Philip Potter, a supporting character, grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. I wanted to know more about him. Readers loved him too, and shared my interest in his past. After Christmas Eve, scheduled for release this fall by MLR Press, is Philip Potter’s story. Fans of Thad Parker’s uncle will find out what sparked his interest in helping gay teens who’d been abandoned by intolerant parents. They’ll also learn Philip’s deepest, most well-kept secret — unknown even to his precious nephew. Discovering Philip required a trip to the sixties — widely …

Jul 31, 2013
By Michael Rupured

Anniversary Give Away Contest

A year ago in August, Dreamspinner Press offered me a contract for my first novel. To celebrate, I’m giving away autographed copies of Until Thanksgiving. How many? I have no idea. Maybe I’ll send a copy to everyone who enters. That’s what I’d like to do, anyway. But with my luck, the offer would go viral and I’d be on the hook for millions of copies. To cover my ass, I’ve made up a point system, based on comments on my blog during the month of August. Earn one point for each comment on posts written by me. Really want an autographed copy? Comments on a guest post will earn you three points. You can comment as many times as …

Jul 22, 2013
By Michael Rupured

Keep Getting Better

I hear from a lot of people, gay guys mostly, who write and hope to be published one day. When they ask for my advice, I always reply with the same question: What are you doing to improve your writing? No matter how good you are, you can always get better. A wealth of excellent resources with practical advice for aspiring writers is available online and in print. But having your work critiqued by somebody who knows more than you do about writing is the best way to improve. You’ve already had some experience with this. Remember your high school English teacher? An excellent example is the term paper you copied from the encyclopedia slaved over, returned by her with “Rewrite!” …

Jul 15, 2013
By Michael Rupured

The Evolution of a Writer

I wrote my first novel using a technique known as pantsing — as in, flying by the seat of my pants. With nary an outline nor character sketch, I wrote chapter one of Until Thanksgiving — then known as Addicted — with no idea what chapter two would be about, and so on, until I’d finished the story. My beta readers will tell you the thriller/romance I ended up with looks nothing like the slice of life story I had in mind when I started. Pantsing is a very free-wheeling, stream-of-conscious style of writing that many writers prefer. The problem, at least for me, was the need to revise a finished chapter to include something I thought about six chapters …

Mar 21, 2013
By Michael Rupured

The Party’s Over

The party I call my recovery from hernia repair is drawing to a close. The surgery was a week ago today, and aside from an occasional twinge, I’m feeling no pain. And no, the absence of pain is not the result of Percocet. I quit taking them Saturday night. I planned to wean myself off the pain killers by increasing the time between doses. But I ended up quitting cold turkey, keeping the Percocet nearby, just in case I woke up hurting in the middle of the night. I woke up the next morning pain-free, and really haven’t had any to speak of since. Of course, I’ve been taking things easy. I get up from my recliner to satisfy basic …

Mar 12, 2013
By Michael Rupured

Taking My Time

People often say they’re impressed by my productivity. I may look more productive, but as a single man, I don’t have to deal with a lot of the stuff that keeps other people busy. Outside of work, my time is my own, to do with as I please. That doesn’t mean my life is better than someone with other responsibilities. Just different. My style for getting stuff done has evolved over the years to emphasize expediency over other factors. I keep my to-do list short by dealing with things as they arise. I pay bills when they arrive in my mailbox, and when possible, answer email messages when I read them the first time. I’m also obedient and will take care …

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