Some Dude, reading my book: It’s so nice to read a book about dudes being close.

Me: Oh, thank you. I wanted to discuss emotional and sexual intimacy between men.

Some Dude: What’s better than this, two men being bros and getting boners around each other.

Me: Uh, yeah . . . ?

SD: Or two bros being bros while kissing. That’s so awesome. Bros can be bros and kiss.

Me: Uuh . . . ?

SD: And that whole chapter where the one dude gets on top of the other and there are orgasms? Totally bros just being bros and having a little fun.

Me: . . .

Me: One of them is gay and the other is questioning his sexuality. It says that in the text. Everything is an overt expression of sexual desire between them. The orgasm scene — they are having sex! Not “bro” sex! Sex-sex! They even argue about the definition of sex before agreeing what happened was sex! There are graphic descriptions of sex acts . . . They touch penises for god’s sake, do you need any more evidence to prove this wasn’t just bros being bros???

SD: But they were touching penises in a bro way.

Me: . . .


SD: When the one guy starts doing the butt stuff to the other, that’s not sexual, it’s just bros being bros.

I wrote this because some people have the special ability to erase or ignore queer relationships and sexuality in literature and media, even when it is presented in a blatant, explicit manner.

Let me learn from where I have been

I’ve been trying to figure out what I would write about the Lambda Literary Emerging Writer’s Retreat. I think the solution is just to sit down and write, and by the process of writing, get to what I want to say.

First off: Malinda Lo, my awesome workshop instructor, wrote a great post on the Retreat here. SJ Sindu, one of this year’s Fellows, also wrote about it here. A lot of people have Tweeted and blogged about the Retreat, but these two really hit on a number of things that echoed with my own experience.

I think if I could boil down said experience, there are two things which I gained, or learned from this retreat:

Continue reading “Let me learn from where I have been”