LGBTQA+

“Triptych” has gone STRANGE!

“Triptych” has gone STRANGE!

There’s something STRANGE happening today!

Fuse Literary Inc., my literary agency and the publishers of the “Fuse” line of books (including Short Fuse – through which two of my works have been published) has announced a brand new imprint:

To celebrate, what better day to announce the creation of Fuse’s all-new Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror imprint than on Star Wars Day: MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH YOU!

 

And to make the launch of Strange Fuse even more dynamite, Fuse is releasing four – yes, FOUR – titles today!

The Creature’s Cookbook

The Gophers of High Charity Wishes Folded Into Fancy Paper

And, of course…

Yes! That’s right! Triptych is back!

It’s been a while, but my debut novel has returned to print, this time in an Author’s Cut edition, with a stunning all-new cover (thanks Rodney V. Smith & Adrienne Kress!), and with some new never-before-in-print material.

You can pick up your copy of the book in eBook, Paperback and Hardcover.

 

And one last announcement… I’ve made what is perhaps a foolish wager with creature and cook Simon Alkenmayer. So to help save my soul – or at least my bank account because I’ve promised to buy Simon some really top quality “Canadian Blood” a.k.a. genuine maple syrup if I lose, and that stuff ain’t cheap – please consider pick up a copy of Triptych in the next three months, and leave a review on Amazon/GoodReads/Your Blog/anywhere you can!

May the Fourth Be with you all, and a very big welcome to STRANGE FUSE!

See you all tomorrow afternoon at my Urban Book Club live AMA!

(2:30pm EST.)

JM Frey“Triptych” has gone STRANGE!
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The Secret Loves of Geek Girls: Redux

 

The Geek Girls Are Back!

 

A large batch of the contributors at the launch for the original book at Page & Panel. (Me on the far left with)

Contributor Margaret Atwood.

Hope Nicholson, publisher over at Bedside Press and overall fabulous activist and editor, has launched a new Kickstarter Gold project. This follow up book brings back your favourite writer and artists from The Secret Loves of Geek Girls with more true stories of love, sex, and dating from the worlds of fandom!

The Secret Loves of Geek Girls was a collection of comics, prose, and illustrations all on the themes of dating as a geek. The collection was full of stories from comic creators, sci-fi writers, videogame designers, cosplayers, and fans! The stories were a diverse range on different topics from first dates to discovering your sexuality and they’ve touched the hearts of people the world over. And this redux project will be the same!

The Returning Cast

Cover by Jenn Woodall

Each of the creators was featured in the first book, and our returning cast list is:

Cover art:

by Jenn Woodall

Comics by:

Margaret Atwood, Katie West (w/Jamie McKelvie), Trina Robbins (w/Megan Kearney), Janet Hetherington, Meags Fitzgerald, Jenn Woodall, Megan Kearney, ALB, Annie Mok, Erin Cossar, Jazmyn & Jessica Paoli, Sarah Searle, Jen Vaughn

Prose stories by:
J.M. Frey, Stephanie Cooke, Megan Lavey-Heaton, Loretta Jean, Emma Woolley, Adrienne Kress, Hope Nicholson, Cherelle Higgins

Art by:
Deena Pagliarello, Leslie Doyle, Gillian G, Rachael Wells

Excerpt from my tale “Time To Move”

How Do I Get My Copy?

Head over to the Kickstarter page to donate today, or watch Bedside Press for information on purchasing a copy for yourself once the Kickstarter has concluded.

JM FreyThe Secret Loves of Geek Girls: Redux
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“ARRIVALS” is out!

Today’s the day!

ARRIVALS, the second Accidental Turn Series novella, is now out!

You can pick it up on AMAZON or SMASHWORDS.

About the novella:

After seventeen years of adventuring, Bevel Dom and Kintyre Turn are finally returning home.

Forsyth Turn—brother to Bevel’s long-time questing partner and newly Paired lover—has left both Hain and a hell of a lot of responsibility behind. He’s bequeathed the Shadow’s Mask and position of the king’s spymaster to Bevel, and the seat of Lysse Chipping to Kintyre. It’s a lot to take on, and it will mean an end to questing forever if they do.

But it might also mean a chance for Bevel and Kintyre to find a Happily Ever After of their own.

Unfortunately, Turn Hall seems to be infested with eligible young maidens out to snatch away the freshly returned Lord of Lysse, determined to destroy the fragile happiness that Bevel has built. Faced with more decisions than he was prepared for, Bevel battles with foes unfamiliar, making him wonder if life on the road really wasn’t all that bad.

But if there’s one thing Bevel Dom isn’t afraid to do, it’s fight for the man he loves.

An Accidental Turn novella set between The Untold Tale and The Forgotten Tale, Arrivals follows Kintyre Turn and Bevel Dom as they step into Forsyth’s vacated life and face the surprising responsibilities he’s left in his wake.

Not sure you’re all caught up on the series? Check out the suggested reading order here, and don’t forget you can still grab your FREE copy of the first book in the series, THE UNTOLD TALE, by signing up for my newsletter.

JM Frey“ARRIVALS” is out!
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I got LaLaLanded… sort of?

(Except, in the Oscars it was Moonlight that was robbed, and in this analogy it was LaLaLand?)

So, I wrote a feature film. It’s called “To A Stranger” and for the past year, I’ve been submitting it around to screenwriting competitions and film festivals. I’m quite pleased to say that it was named an  Official Selection for the NEU WORLD INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL, named an Official Selection and recieved an honourable mention with the DEPTH OF FIELD INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL, and was an official Quarter-Finalist for the CARMESI HOUSE INTERNATIONAL SCREENWRITING CONTEST FOR DIVERSE VOICES.

On Wednesday  March 15th, while having the great pleasure to be reading at the at the ChiZine Reading Series event in Toronto, I was pleased to receive an email from the Canada Film Festival informing me that my screenplay had won a prize, and to click the link to the list to find out which. Overjoyed, I told the folks around me, and then put away my phone – I was still at the reading event, after all, I didn’t want to be rude. I figured once I got off stage, I could read the list and see what I won, and share it with everyone at the event.

When I reopened my phone, it was to a second email profusely apologizing and saying that I’d been sent the congrats email by mistake.

I was bummed, but I thought: “Oh well. They picked someone else instead of me, I can handle that. They just informed me by mistake.”

But when I kept reading, I started to get angry. Because this is what it said:

Our deepest apologies for the mistaken email announcing you were a winner. 

This year we have condensed our winner amounts and only awarded 26 winners. Last year we awarded 56. You were chosen as a finalist for a winner in the categories of either Royal Reel, Rising Star, or Award of excellence. But we are no longer awarding those. This email was sent in error but want you to know that you script was highly scored and well deserving of an award. Unfortunately we are unable to award every single screenplay submission. 

We are transitioning and during this time mistakes happen and we are so very sorry for the false email. Please let us know if there is anything we can do to compensate for this error. “

Which, you know what? Is insulting.

“Oh, you won, but actually we eliminated the category so you didn’t win after all?”

Are you serious?

Firstly, as someone who pays to enters these competitions, this feels like a crass money grab. And second, as someone who volunteers every year to judge a film festival, I was livid on behalf of the judges who had clearly gone to all the hard work of choosing the award winners, only to have the categories eliminated after all the work is done.

I understand the need to be more efficient, to streamline a festival, to make changes. But to do so not only in the midst of a festival after entries were submitted (instead of between years), but to do so after winners have been chosen? It’s very disrespectful.

I shot an email back, very politely expressing my disappointment but understanding, and asking what award I would have won. I was told it was “Rising Star” and that they would be offering me a refund on my entry fee.

I replied, again politely, that honestly speaking, I would much rather have the award than the refund. $25, or the ability to put a laurel with “Rising Star” on my screenplay as I shopped it? The laurel is much more important to my screenplay and career than my $25. And, I pointed out, since they’d already deliberated and assigned the awards, it didn’t seem too strenuous to just… give out digital laurels. I thanked them for the refund offer, but repeated that the laurels are more important to me.

Besides, I wondered, but didn’t ask, were they refunding everyone? All the people whose categories were eliminated? I hoped so. I hoped that meant  that thirty other people were getting their money back, and not just me because I was the one who complained. Though, again, I don’t see the point in slashing categories where all the work was already actually done – including informing the winners  – in favor of having to give back $750.

All I got back was silence for over a week. I sent another email politely asking which decision they’d come to – the awards or the refunds, and was curtly informed, by an unsigned email, that my refund had already been put through. (That was Friday. Today is Monday, and there is no refund on my account yet, but it may take a few business days, so I can be patient about that.)

I replied that I appreciated the refund, and inquired again about what decision had been made about assigning the awards after all. Again, silence. To date, silence.

So.

I won an award, but didn’t. I’m extremely pleased and flattered to be named a festivals’ “Rising Star” screenwriter, as I think this is a very important thing to be out in the world and Google-able to people who may be researching me or looking for fresh scripts, only it’s not going to be posted or found anywhere.  I assume I’ll get my $25 back, but I don’t want $25 – I want the laurels that I’ve earned, and been awarded. I want to honor the judge’s hard work, and recommend the festival to anyone else, but now I can’t and I never will.

It was extremely unprofessional of the festival to do this.

It’s extremely irritating, and saddening, and at the same time… all I can do is sigh about it. Because it’s still in their power to decide not to award the categories, and not in mine. Still, I don’t recommend submitting your work to the festival in the future, because who knows what categories they’ll eliminate mid-festival next year.

So. Um. Yeah. There it is. “To A Stranger” won a thing… and then it didn’t.

JM FreyI got LaLaLanded… sort of?
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My LGBTQA+ Characters

Pride Month #1

In honor of Pride Month, I thought I’d give you a run down of all of the LGBTQA+ Characters in my novels and short stories!

Heart – Bisexual, Polyamorous

Art by @reapersun

Kalp is the alien protagonist of Triptych, and he comes from a world where there are two biological sexes (along with the standard percentage of genetic variants that produce he produce the spectrum of biological variations that occur between two biological sexes), but very little concept of gender. When he flees the destruction of his home planet – and the death of his two spouses – he finds himself on a strange restrictive planet filled with humans who have bizarre notions of who he is allowed to desire and what he should find fascinating and satisfying based on his genitals. Kalp eventually enters into a romantic and sexual relationship with two humans, over the course of the book.

Basil Grey – Bisexual, Polyamorous

Art by @reapersun

Basil Grey is a Geek Everyman with a wide-open heart from Triptych. He had never considered whether he was straight or not simply because everyone he’d ever fall in love with (or had a crush on) were female. However, he slowly falls in love with Kalp over the course of their friendship. When the alien proposes to expand his relationship with his girlfriend Gwen to include Kalp, Basil is game for giving it a try. The threesome eventually end up marrying.

Gwen Pierson – Heterosexual, Polyamorous

Art by @reapersun

Gwen Pierson is the third in the triptych of lovers from Triptych. A bit of a grump, cynical, tough, and realistic, Gwen nevertheless has a great capacity for love and genuinely revels in the powerfully memorable domestic moments that she has with her partners. She is far more reluctant to open up her relationship with Basil to include Kalp, mostly because she fears losing his friendship if the relationship doesn’t work out. She doesn’t believe in the maxim “It is better to have love and lost than never to have loved at all,” because that just sounds so painful. She’d rather stick with the safe and reliable. In the end, though, she’s happy with the development in their relationship, adores the sex, and is selfishly smug about being the wife of two big-hearted and attentive people whom she in turn loves deeply and gluttonously.

Kintyre Turn – Bisexual

Art by @inchells

Kintyre Turn is the hero of The Tales of Kintyre Turn by Elgar Reed, which is the book-within-a-book in The Accidental Turn Series. He is bold, brawny, brash, brave, and a bit of an arrogant buffon. His traveling companion and loyal scribe, Bevel Dom, has been by his side for fourteen years, and during that time Kintyre has tumbled in and out of the beds of Damsels, Princess, and Pirate Queens. These affairs were often curated by Bevel, and sometimes he even joined in. When that happened, it always sort of accidentally ended up that Bevel and Kintyre were the ones making love, and the proxy woman got up and left in an ignored huff. It took fifteen years for Kintyre to be able to work his way through the toxic masculinity he was mired in enough to realize that he actually loved Bevel, enjoyed sex with him, and wanted to be in a real and lasting, healthy relationship with his best friend. By the end of The Untold Tale, the two heroes have cleared the air and pledged their troth to one another, living opening as a couple.

Bevel Dom – Gay

Art by @inchells

The narrator of The Tales of Kintyre Turn, Bevel lives in a fantasy realm where the love between men is supposed to be brotherly, macho, and platonic. He is sixteen when he first meets Kintyre, and doesn’t understand why he is so attracted to the arrogant Lord’s son. He becomes first Kintyre’s Squire, then his Sidekick, then a fellow Knight, all the while being Kintyre’s closest friend and chronicler. Eventually he realizes that his love for Kintyre is more lustful and romantic then it’s supposed to be; he willingly sets up trysts for Kintyre (and joins in) because it’s the only time he can act on his melancholy desire. Eventually, Kintyre and Bevel work through their emotional constipation, realize their love for each other, and become as close to married as this repressed realm allows for. Bevel is blissfully happy, though he wishes they could have a child.

The Prince – Heterosexual, Transgendered

Art by @archiaart

The protagonist of my erotica novel Lips Like Ice, The Prince is an alien on the verge of sexual maturity. In his species, adolescents can choose which biological sex they want to develop as, and against all societal norms and mores, The Prince chooses to become male. This causes him no end of abuse and misgendering in the court, and leads to his father trying to bully him into becoming female by providing him with a pet that is meant to encourage his nurturing, feminine side. However, the pet is more intelligent than The Prince thought, and together they escape the court, find happiness and love, and acceptance.

Lydia – Bisexual

Art by @archiaart

Lydia is “the pet” of Lips Like Ice. She mentions her bisexuality just briefly, as she’s explaining to the Prince that on Earth, his desire to match his biological sex to his internal gender would not be so horrific and shocking. She teaches The Prince to accept himself as he is, to fight for his right to be male, and to love himself when no one else, save her, seems to love him. Eventually they escape the oppressive and bigoted court together, and have their own Happily Ever After.

The Narrator – Lesbian

Art found on Pinterest. If you know the artist, please let me know so I can credit them appropriately. I couldn’t find the credit.

The narrator of my short “The Moral of the Story” from “Wrestling With Gods” is a lesbian, and I hesitated to add her to this list because she dies. (That’s not really a spoiler.) And I didn’t want to promote one more Dead Lesbian. But she doesn’t die because she’s a lesbian, so… anyway. This is a tale of survival in a post-electronics world, where the magic has returned in order to heal the planet after humans have made the icecaps melt and wreaked environmental havoc.

do have a lesbian romance with a Happily Ever After in the works, but it’s unfortunately not ready to be announced yet. Soon though! I hope!

The Secret Loves of Geek Girls

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Not technically all mine, and not actually fiction, but this great non-fiction book is filled with confessionals, essays (like my own “How Fanfiction Made Me Gay”), funny stories, comics, and tales of women from a wide variety of sexualities, gender expressions, ages, cultures, and ethnicities.

I have other LGBTQA+ characters sprinkled throughout my short stories and forthcoming novels and screenplays, as well. Check them out, and stay turned for more project announcements.

JM FreyMy LGBTQA+ Characters
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