Black Dog Release Party

September 5, 2014

BlackDog

Hello, my name is John Terry Moore (John) I’m the author of “Black Dog,” released by Dreamspinner Press today, September 5. It’s a pleasure to chat to everyone about my ‘baby’ —- my first published novel and my passion for writing gay romance stories. So welcome to this discussion and through “Black Dog” and myself, welcome to Australia! Because if nothing else, I promise you this is a very believable snapshot of life ‘downunder’. Of course this is fiction but these types of scenarios are playing out, every day, where we live. So hopefully readers will have the bonus of learning more about our country as well as being immersed in an intriguing love story. I live in a regional town called Geelong, only one hour from Melbourne in Victoria, Australia. My partner is Russell. On October 3 next we celebrate 31 years together. Russell says he would have served less time for murder! We both believe, however, that the power of partnership can be such a creative and dynamic force. If you love someone you’ll do anything, anything at all. That’s the message of “Black Dog” — that love does indeed triumph over all odds. I was born into a farming family in Tasmania, moved to Melbourne for some time and began my long association with the automotive industry there. Russell and I came to the Geelong district around 28 years ago and were farmers as well as continuing to pursue our full time careers — me in the automotive industry and he as a chef. In addition I became a Civil Celebrant and my work of marrying, burying and naming babies has inspired much of the content of “Black Dog”. Inspiration? More like desperation just a few years ago. I remember doing a funeral for a young guy in his mid twenties who had ended his own life. As I sat with the family, researching his life, it hit me like a ton of bricks. What unfolded was a copy of my own early life and I knew immediately what had driven him to do this. The great sadness was that his family have to this day, no idea that their son and brother was same sex attracted. There were several more like this, mostly indirect homophobia, a complete vacuum of understanding, no room for anyone else in this world other than straight people. So I make a cameo appearance in “Black Dog” as does Russell. And yes, he’s a great cook!

Above all, I wanted to tell a good story. To entertain the reader and to hold their attention. That’s what DSP requires and that’s great. But the other task of “Black Dog” is to educate. So kids growing through their teens and men in regional and rural areas in Australia in particular feel better about themselves after reading the book. That loving another human being is far more important than sexual orientation. I’m interested in your perception of Australia and Australians, and your understanding of this place. Do you realize we’re just 23 million people in the Southern Ocean versus the United States at over 300 million? Do Australian guys do it for you; are we seen as maybe a touch unsophisticated and down to earth?

Does the name “Black Dog” intimidate you, realizing it’s a description of depression? Does the blurb set your mind at rest knowing it’s written as a love story?

It’s Chapter 27 “The Big Day” near the end of the book before you, the unsuspecting reader will finally realize I’ve made you laugh and cry on the same page and the story changes direction dramatically. Chapter 28 is the explanation why and Chapter 29 is the suitable ending. Will you hate me for challenging your emotions this way, I wonder?

 

About the Author:

John Terry Moore lives with his partner Russell in Geelong, Victoria’s largest regional center, one hour from Melbourne, Australia. He completed his education at Hobart Matriculation College, and held a number of senior positions in the automotive industry over a thirty-five year period.

He has been a civil marriage celebrant and funeral celebrant since 1995 (now retired), and together with his partner were successful flower growers, raised stud sheep and bred Kelpies, Australia’s working dogs. Born into a farming family; his empathy and understanding of country people has allowed him to focus on rural issues in his writing.

Geographical and social isolation through the worry and stress of poor seasons, fluctuating prices, and in particular, sexual orientation in men has fuelled depression across regional and rural Australia in epidemic proportions. Driven by his experiences as a funeral celebrant, he understands full well the ultimate penalty paid by men of all age groups when they feel marginalized by homophobic attitudes and actions in rural and regional communities in particular.

Over the years, John has become an increasingly strident and persistent voice with politicians, community groups, and the general public, encouraging, supporting, and driving the push for gay marriage and equal rights for same sex parents and their children. Black Dog reminds us that gay kids should never be allowed to feel that they aren’t as good as straight kids. That only when everyone is treated exactly the same under law will society begin to heal itself.

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Buy “Black Dog” here!

3 Responses to “Black Dog Release Party”

  1. Sula says:

    Interesting start to a blog book launch, little snippets of the story to wonder what is coming next. Hi John Terry Moore, I love the Kelpie and the book cover :D

  2. Sula says:

    Hi, Sorry I wrote that comment a few days before your complete post was posted :)

    In answer to your question I am a English (aka a Pom) so my perceptions may be different to an Americans, plus we have a population of 50.1 million, so still pretty small in comparison to the US :) I think some views are stereotyped by the soap operas we get over in the UK from Australia & the men have a historical stereotyping as being chauvinistic heavy drinkers. But the UK has a lot of Aussies living here and I have Australian & New Zealand friends and some of my family/friends moved there, so its not a general view we all have. There are always the exceptions, but aren’t there always no matter the nationality?

    I view Australians as confident and direct, they like socialising, the outdoors, good at sports and have quite a cosmopolitan mix of peoples and cuisines. I think culturally, their humour and legal issues are surprisingly similiar to England. However the issues relating to geographical and social isolation are very different due to ratio of people to area we live in, as following, which should give you a pretty good idea of the isolation issue for Australians and something Americans may also recognise.

    Population density (people per sq. km of land area)- according to data from the World Bank:
    The UK has an land area of approx 243,610 km² (so small)and a population ratio of 265 people per sq km of land
    The US has a land area of approx 9,826,675 km² and a population ratio of 35 people per sq km of land
    Australia has has a land area of approx 7,692,024 km² and population ration of 3 people per sq km of land

    I like Australians and do not have a problem with a romance story set there and I am not intimidated by the term Black Dog. Although it does have mythical connotations linking to hell hounds and harbingers of death, as well as the more recent link to depression (sorry should have posted a nerd alert warning)

    I found your post very interesting, sad and inspiring. Sad, as a very close friend of mine took his own life partly due to depression and to his families rejection when he came out to them. Black Dog, the story, may link to the isolation and loneliness due to population ratio to land area, but fundamentally it is about love, regardless of orientation. I really forward to reading this book and it’s on my wish list :D

  3. johnterrymoore@bigpond.com says:

    Hi there and thanks for your comments.

    John

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