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Pride Matters

I hesitate calling my debut mystery A DEADLY WALK IN DEVON an LGBT novel, even though Chase, the lead character, is a gay man. His sexuality, although important to his personal story, is tangential to his role in helping solve the mystery. Other parts of his identity—his curiosity and ability to put clues together—are more important.

 

But writing about Chase gives me the opportunity to show the challenges of a gay man navigating his senior years. Among these are finding a new love after losing an old one, building new families, and facing limitations of older age without the aid of children or other family members.

 

If I had tried to sell “A Deadly Walk in Devon” thirty years ago, I would have faced a lot of headwinds. Mainstream mysteries typically didn’t have gay protagonists. Gay characters wouldn’t have been “out” to everybody—especially strangers. By presenting a regular protagonist that just happens to be gay, my book wouldn’t have been carried by most mainstream bookstores.

 

Even though there’s still a ways to go, the progress we’ve made since then has been astonishing. “Kwozies” like my book barely raise an eyebrow. There are many reasons for this progress, but Pride celebrations the world over—and an entire month dedicated to Pride—have definitely helped. Let’s keep moving forward!

 



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