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View Full Version : Should gay guys write about their lives?



Timmy V.
08-05-2012, 08:17 AM
0.

M.Macabre
08-05-2012, 08:23 AM
ಠ_ಠ

Kitty27
08-05-2012, 08:51 AM
Three of us were talking at a party. Two gay guys and a straight guy. The straight guy said “Counting my wife, I’ve slept with nine women. My gay buddy said “that sounds like a good weekend for me.” We laughed hard. But of course, it’s true. Most gay guys have sex with a lot of guys. We hook up with other guys using Grindr as casually as a straight guy picks up a loaf of bread for his wife. I’ve lived in Albany for thirty years. I know one married gay guy couple. The vast majority of gay men have no interest in marriage. When they are in a relationship, they’re looking for three ways on Grindr and Manhunt half the time. Yeah yeah yeah some straight people do this. Very few. In small city America the vast majority of hetero 40 year olds are married, or were married, and have children in any event. The vast majority of gay guys are single, going to the gym, tanning, and doing laundry so they can go out for the weekend. Zillions of gay guys are on hook up sites manhunt and Grindr. The urban gay guy is having even more sex.

Its true. I think gay life is great. The problem is when you go to write it. The well intentioned straight voices and the defensive gay voices say “you can’t write that, you’re pondering to stereotypes.” Um, sorry that’s what most gay guys are doing. Then they say “you’re giving people ammunition against us. How are we supposed to achieve gay marriage if you’re out there telling people every couple is having three ways?”

Well, not every couple. The ugly couple can't get anybody lol lol lol.

So. As a gay man, as a member of any minority, do we write about our lives when our lives are often the stereotypes being thrown at us? Are we "hurting the cause?"



Uh,ahem. Where to begin here? I hesitate to port this to the LGBT forum as the title and your words might get some very heated responses.

I see you are a new member so I will give it a try.

This is generalizing what straight and gay people do and don't do. Not exactly a good conversation starter and frankly,might be extremely offensive to members at AW.

Every one is different as to their lifestyles. You cannot judge an entire group by the actions of a few,as I am sure you already know. I won't even touch the ugly comment.


I suggest rephrasing your question and avoiding generalizations.

M.Macabre
08-05-2012, 09:05 AM
Alright, no one's up so I'll actually respond.

Your question isn't actually, ''Should gay guys write about their lives,'' it's, ''If I feel my life follows a potentially offensive stereotype, can I still write about it?'' Or a more apt title would be ''Should I write about my life.'' The answer is: yes, of course. You should write what you love, and if you love to write about your life, no matter how possibly offensive it is, then write about your life. In any event, I doubt anyone is going to tell you that ''you can't write that.'' They might find it distasteful, or don't appreciate being generalized in any fashion, and therefore dislike your work, but I doubt anyone is going to actually try and censor you. And there is a fair amount of gay fiction that pretty much depicts a lifestyle as you've described it.

On the topic of generalizations, is there a decent chunk of the gay community that operates as you've described? Yep. But I think your view might be narrowed by your immediate surroundings. I know a fair amount of straight and bi people who do pretty much the same thing, and a lot of gay people who don't just live their lives tanning during the week so they can go out on the weekends, including couples who aren't together just so they can CL a three-way and surprise! they're attractive. If I were to write about my life as a gay man it would probably include some sex, as being homosexual deals directly with my sexuality, but also the other things I've encountered linked to being gay, like bullying, getting jumped all through high school, protests I've been a part of, and being in the closet.

Now, if you're questioning if you have an ethical obligation to self-censor on behalf of the current civil rights movement, I would say no. Also three ''lols'' in a row might get you labeled a troll :/

LindaJeanne
08-05-2012, 09:06 AM
*blink*
*blink*
*composes reply*
*deletes it without posting*
*composes another reply*
*deletes it without posting*

I think I'll just leave it at: "What Kitty27 said."
(Editing to add: and M.Macabre too, who posted while I was typing)

*backs slowly out of the thread*.

shaldna
08-05-2012, 09:08 AM
So. As a gay man, as a member of any minority, do we write about our lives when our lives are often the stereotypes being thrown at us? Are we "hurting the cause?"

If you are writing about it in accurate way that really reflects your life of the sort of life your character would actually be living, instead of a stereotypical account that will do nothing but add to the misinformation and lack of understanding about the gay community.

I understand that there is this idea that gay men are wild party animals, fit as a racehorse with abs that would put Channing Tatum to shame, and they are hawt, and smell good and are having sex. lots and lots and lots of drug and champagne fulled sex.

But see, here's where I'm not so sure. Of the six gay men that I know or am related to, none of them behave that way. And don't say 'oh but you don't know what people are like in private/when they are on a night out/ blah blah' because I've lived with two of those people.

One of the gay gentlemen in question is very lonely and hasn't been in a relationship, of any kind, for ten years because he is looking after his elderly mother 24/7. Half the people who meet him have no idea he's gay. Yes, he's a terrible flirt, but he flirts with everyone, male and female, regardless of age or sexuality or marital status, but he's one of the most sensible people.

One thing that I have noticed among my gay friends is that they are much more clued up when it comes to sex. Now, this might be localised to here, or to their age groups, but awareness of STD's is at an all time high. Most of those folk grew up in the 70's and 80's and saw the AIDS epidemic sweeping through the gay communities in the late 80's and 90's and have no desire to put themselves in that situation.

In short, if you are going to write about something, anything at all, be accurate. Don't lie, don't generalise, don't stereotype and don't sensationalise.

Timmy V.
08-05-2012, 09:19 AM
0

mccardey
08-05-2012, 09:28 AM
Yes you're correct. Our gay lives do encompass all the things you reference, bullying, discrimination of all types and so many good things. But as we show and not tell in our writing, if we write about a weekend in Fire Island or a weekend in Provincetown or the bath houses in Montreal, we end up showing the gay men around us too. The United States has 1.558 million men on Grindr. The UK has over 350 thousand.

No one is saying every gay man does this. But millions do live the life as described. Kitty has already yelled "you're generalizing". How do you write about humanity without some generalizing? Everything being on a case by case basis is absurd. Even the NY Times writes articles about Obama having trouble getting the white vote, or Romney with the black vote.

So do we write it? Or do we self censor? Kitty sounds like definitely yes. You say its ok.

You're right I'm new. I'm used to facebook. How does laughing alot - using lol lol lol make one a troll?

Thank you very much for your feedback.

Actually, Kitty didn't yell.

But the thing is, you've asked a question in pretty contentious terms and people here are writers and are going to take words seriously. If you're asking whether it behoves a gay writer to sanitize their depiction of the gay lifestyle as they know and live it, that's one thing - but when you stick stereotypes of your own into a question about stereotyping, people are going to wonder if you're just trying to stir up a bit of trouble.

I don't think you're a troll - I hope not. But you might want to rethink the way you phrase your questions, at least while you're new here. It will give people more time to know you without raising hackles.

To answer your question - you can write pretty much anything. Who gets offended is totally up to you and them. For me, I'd write people rather than lifestyles, but that's your call to make.

Timmy V.
08-05-2012, 09:33 AM
Actually, Kitty didn't yell.

But the thing is, you've asked a question in pretty contentious terms and people here are writers and are going to take words seriously. If you're asking whether it behoves a gay writer to sanitize their depiction of the gay lifestyle as they know and live it, that's one thing - but when you stick stereotypes of your own into a question about stereotyping, people are going to wonder if you're just trying to stir up a bit of trouble.

I don't think you're a troll - I hope not. But you might want to rethink the way you phrase your questions, at least while you're new here. It will give people more time to know you without raising hackles.

To answer your question - you can write pretty much anything. Who gets offended is totally up to you and them. For me, I'd write people rather than lifestyles, but that's your call to make.

I think I better remove it if there is such a way thanks.

MacAllister
08-05-2012, 09:38 AM
I think we're done here -- at least for now. If one of the roundtable mods wants to re-open this later, I'll leave that decision in their capable hands.

Sometimes, though, there's just no good place left for a conversation to go.

Kitty27
08-05-2012, 09:39 AM
I think I better remove it if there is such a way thanks.

I didn't yell,Timmy.

Frankly,your post left me at a loss for words. I honestly didn't know what to say. Thankfully,Shaldna and Mccardey came to the rescue with reasoned and excellent responses.

Don't self censor yourself if that is what you wish to write about. But also don't generalize an entire community,either. Whatever story you want to write,I wish you well.