December 29, 2008

Homosexuality & Writing: Nathan James, author of Check Ride

The Author

Author and activist Nathan James, called the “philosopher-prince of erotica” by reviewers, began his bibliography with the novel The Devil’s Details (2005), the short stories Enchanted Morning (Muscle Worshipers, STARbooks Press 2006), and Ten Days (Love In A Lock Up, STARbooks Press, 2007) He has contributed to the Zane anthology Flesh To Flesh (Strebor/Simon & Schuster, 2008) with his story, "Thickness". His e-books, In His Court (Forbidden Publications, 2006) and the critically acclaimed Check Ride (Forbidden Publications, 2007) have enjoyed bestseller status.

Nathan was nominated by fellow authors in 2007 for the Clik Magazine Awards. He is a passionate activist, speaking at antiwar protests and gay-rights rallies across the country. Nathan is a regular contributor to local papers and, where he writes articles of interest to the LGBT community of color. Nathan is a lifelong resident of New York City. Literary influences include James Baldwin, Stanley Bennett Clay, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, Audre Lorde, and Herman Melville. Nathan encourages people to visit his website and his MySpace page. Nathan can be reached at

The Books

Gilbert Savage is a young, hot pilot for AirEast, a New York City charter airline. When his friend and fellow pilot, Mario Freeman offers him an orientation flight, or "check ride", in the company's big new party jet, Gil readily accepts.

A hair-raising near-miss with a light plane on landing brings hidden passions between Gil and Mario to the surface. As they go beyond the mile-high club, the errant light plane pilot schemes to get the young lovers fired. The son of the CEO, the Cessna pilot, has an evil agenda. Will the lovers weather the storm and take their budding relationship to new heights, or will they crash and burn?

Click the cover above to order Check Ride today!

Nathan James takes you on an erotic, sizzling journey into the supernatural with the story of Josh Dolan, a young, gay college student. Josh meets the Devil himself, and embarks on an odyssey of discovery in which he experiences the darkness of hatred, and learns the meaning of faith. Along the way, he has some of the hottest sexual encounters of his life. "The Devil's Details" is a sexy, compassionate look at good and evil, and the challenges young Joshua faces as a gay man are taken from today's headlines. Angels soar and the Devil beckons...because he really is in the "Details"!

Click the cover above to order The Devil's Details today!


How have your works been received by readers of all orientations?

I have been very well received by the LGBT community, and much to my surprise, I've been getting feedback from straight women, as well! I hadn't expected that, but I have since become aware that there is an interest in gay lit which extends beyond the gay/lesbian community. I have been privileged to participate in discussions and panels during which I've learned that the gay/lesbian genre is evolving into something that can stand on its own as a literary art form.

In the stories you have written and are planning to write, what ideas and themes do you see reoccurring that shed light on homosexuality?

I wrote The Devil's Details as a sci-fi/fantasy novel which explores the absurdity of hate. I have witnessed throughout my life and writing career, the recurring premise that gays and lesbians were "less than" and therefore "OK to hate". Our society, through its parental, religious, and political authority figures, has given people "permission to hate". We can see this trend going on right now, in the passage of Proposition 8 in California, overturning same-sex marriage, in the restrictions on gay/lesbian rights in other states, and in the general attitude of homophobia which is still very pervasive in our world.

Yet, even as we continue to struggle against bigotry, I can see hope: gays and lesbians are prouder of themselves and their unique culture than I have seen the community at any time in my life. The community speaks with a passionate voice on issues of concern to us; louder and more strident than ever before.

There seems to be a growing awareness that we are at a critical time in history, and it is always incumbent upon us to make sure we can live without fear of persecution. In my novella, Check Ride, for example, my two pilots have to contend with their airline's VP, who is rabidly homophobic, and tries to manufacture an incident in hopes of having an excuse to get those "disgusting f*ggots" out of his airline. This still goes on today, and we still need to be vigilant and unafraid.

At the end of the day, if there was one thing you wanted your readers to remember in regards to homosexuality, what would that thing be?

I would implore my readers to understand that we are all one species on this small Earth. We will only go forward into a wonderful future if we are compassionate and accepting of our marvelous diversity. Love is universal, and no matter how it may be expressed between people, it is beautiful.

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