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Edmond Manning
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message 1: by Dreamspinner (new)

Dreamspinner Press (Dreamspinnerpress) | 2562 comments Mod
Edmond Manning, author of the newly released King Perry, joins us today from 1-6 pm EST to discuss his book, answer questions, hold a contest, and more!


message 2: by Mike (new)

Mike | 4 comments Edmond, this book is amazing. Deeply moving, frightening, humorous, and unpredictable, this is a gripping read. Your passion for words—even letters!—keen human insight, and fierce love of everyday people run deeply throughout this book. It goes far above and beyond the genre of Gay Romance and into territory that will challenge every reader. Truly an incredible book.


message 3: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Mike, I'm so glad you enjoyed the book. That's really important to me...I want folks to feel giddy happy by the time they finish. So, thanks for chiming in!


message 4: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Hi Edmond

Greetings from Switzerland :)

I must admit I love your sense of humor... your video about first time writers really cheered me up on a rather trying day!


What's next on your to-do list?


Rebecca


message 5: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Hi Rebecca in Switzerland!

I'm so glad the First Time Writers video made you laugh. I had fun creating it - mainly because I may have (*ahem*) said or thought a few of those things myself every now and then. Maybe. GRIN.

I actually have all kinds of things in the hopper:

1) I have another video to finish for youtube: this one is on why you might choose King Perry as a book club book. There are quite a few stories happening within Vin and Perry's tale...

2) I am headed to San Francisco next week for work and while there, I'm going to be filming video for the book trailer. That will be fun.

3) I'm promoting King Perry for the next few months. http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/stor...

4) I'm in the middle of writing the second book in this series!

5) Oh, and I blog...I try to update about 2-3 times a week. www.edmondmanning.com


message 6: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments And for those who didn't see my ridiculous debut on Youtube (my first appearance ever)... here you go:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E8adaL...


message 7: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Edmond wrote " 4) I'm in the middle of writing the second book in this series! "


Busy, busy busy... makess me tired just reading about it all.

So how many books in the series?

(and with in ref to what you wrote on FB - with or without pants? *g*)

Rebecca


message 8: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments I must redefine your question...what counts as pants?

I am wearing my awesome round-the-house fuzzy jammie bottoms that are covered in skulls. I find skulls very adorable for some reason (it's not a goth thing...I just like skeletons - they're cute.)

Are those pants? Maybe. Maybe not.

Rebecca, you may enjoy my fixation with pants - well, one pair of pants:


As for the series, there are 6 books in the series that I foresee right now. I actually have ideas for 2-3 books after that, but I'm committed to the first 6 books - they are the first 'story arc.'

I've got half of Book 2 written, big chunks of Book 6 written, and a strong first draft of Book 5. So I'm very committed to seeing this series through. Each book deals with a different king.

Edmond


message 9: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Whooops - the link to my pants fixation: http://www.edmondmanning.com/2012/02/...


message 10: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Edmond wrote: "I must redefine your question...what counts as pants?
"


Well, you see I'm a Brit who lives overseas so vest and pants means a whole different thing to me ;)

Adorable skulls? ... ever seen Mystery Men with the skull in the bowling ball? He was kinda cuddly.


Six books eh? Wow, that's what I call planning!

Rebecca


message 11: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Yes, I love Mystery Men.
I just took a picture of an adorable skull...I'll try to upload it here.

Sorry it took me so long to respond - I had to go get some egg rolls, since I'm going to be hanging out at the computer all afternoon.

What is an author without his eggrolls?


message 12: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Regarding the six books...yes, the whole series tells the story of Vin Vanbly, the narrator in King Perry. None of the books will feature his name, which is fitting: his nickname is The Human Ghost.

So while the first book is definitely about Perry, it's also very much about Vin and getting to know this strange, gifted, shy man. Who is he? Why is he the way that he is?

The six books answer those questions and more.


message 13: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Sounds great, Edmond. A lovely plotty story arch!

Where'd you get your inspiration from and perservance to write all 6 books?


Enjoy your egg rolls :)


message 14: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments I will answer that, but first things first: I posted a picture of an "adorable skull" on Facebook and I tagged you in it, so you should be able to find it easily. GRIN.


message 15: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Edmond wrote: "I will answer that, but first things first: I posted a picture of an "adorable skull" on Facebook and I tagged you in it, so you should be able to find it easily. GRIN."

Ok... I admit that is an adorable skull!


message 16: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Where do you get your inspiration?

Hmmm. I'll go with as short an answer as I can with this:

I do mens' work. Some of the men I work are broken. They just got divorced and are bewildered as to how that happened. Or they've been carrying grief around their whole lives and just now recognized how much it controls them.

Other men are not broken at all - they're fine. Better than fine. They're doing great! And I don't just mean good jobs or no credit card debt: they love their wives (or husbands), they feel connected to the world, etc., but suddenly they want more...they want to give back to the world and start transforming it.

These king stories I'm writing...these are their stories. These men inspire me.

Men who say, "I am more than this. I am more powerful than I think I have realized. I have something to give the world, and it's not just quarterly tax reports."

I love men like this - straight or gay - because they dream bigger. It's especially powerful to see a man broken by his own mistakes, his own shortcomings get back up and say, "I will do better. I must."

I get chills.

And THAT inspires me.


message 17: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Also...I love the character, Vin. I want to hug him and then take him out for Mac & Cheese at the restaurant of his choice. I like writing for him because I get sad and happy at the same time. It's a pleasure to curl up with my computer in front of a big fire in my living room and say, "Hey Vin...do you want to play?"

The character comes out of shadows and says, "Yeah. Let's do this."

I love writing in Vin's voice, so six books does not seem all that challenging to me.

Thank you for the EXCELLENT question, Rebecca. While I knew the answer in my head, I don't think I've ever articulated it well.


message 18: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Fantastic, Edmond... I love the idea of integrating and moulding that things that drive and inspire us in our daily life into fiction.

Immortalising great men - bravo!


message 19: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments I really like the power of every day life.

In the second book (under construction), Vin (the narrator) says, "I love strong men. Of course, I find many men strong who others may not notice, so I'm turned on by lonely men, men who are sad, angry men, stoic, closed-off men just waiting for someone to find them out, and of course, total assholes. But we are all destined for Spring."

LOL...Vin can find beauty in many overlooked places.


message 20: by L.C. (new)

L.C. (LC_Chase) | 17 comments Hi, Edmond! *waves*

I don't have any questions yet. I slept in and my brain is still waking up. ;-) I just wanted to pop in and say "hi" and wish you fun today, and a huge congratulations again on King Perry.

Party on! :-D


message 21: by Carole-Ann (new)

Carole-Ann (BlueOpal) | 36 comments OK, did Vin come into your head as a complete person, or did you have to build him up from several pieces?

And, do you write from life experiences, or is it all just fantasy?

Don't answer if you don't want - sorry, rather personal :(


message 22: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Hi, L.C.!

Go get something to drink. Or eat. Watch Modern Family on hulu.com and give your brain a chance to wake up. You'll get there.

And thank you again, L.C. for your awesome review of King Perry - it really touched my heart.

For those who may not have seen it...wow. She was very kind to me.

http://lcchase.blogspot.com/2012/03/b...

Edmond


message 23: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Carol-Ann, this is a fantastic question and I will be happy to answer it.

1) Did Vin come into your head as a complete person or did you have to build him up over time?

Vin came into my life over time. When I first wrote about him, I did not know his name...he was just "this guy." Since I wrote about him in first person and nobody called him by his name, I just wrote stuff like, "I walked into the room..."

Didn't know his name! He wouldn't tell me.

As I wrote more and more of him, he finally revealed his name: Vin Vanbly. I thought it was a ridiculous, fake-sounding name. LOL. I thought, "C'mon...we can do better than something that sounds like a failed movie star."

But the name stuck and it *fit.* Once I let him BE Vin Vanbly...the character told me more and more about himself.

One day, his whole life story lit up in front of me and I was wracked with grief about his horrible, shitty life...and the beauty that he made out of it.

This was the first time in my life where I really had one of those "communicating with the characters" moments writers talk about. I finally was like, "Ah, I get it."

I do think Vin would not have revealed his whole life story if I did not listen and accept his goofy name.

(Okay...that's the first question...I'll answer the second question in a new box.)


message 24: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Question 2 from Carol-Ann:

2) Do you write from life experiences or is it all fantasy?

Um...both. I lived in San Francisco for four months in this AMAZING apartment near Duboce Triangle. It was fantastic: I got to be a tourist every weekend, go to the redwoods, the ocean, find crazy out-of-the-way spots...do all the things that a tourist would do but not have to cram it all into 4 days. That's where I got all the location settings.

I've seen the sunset on the East Peak of Mt. Tam. I've hunted for starfish in secret codes.

Some other parts...well...let's just say that while I was writing this book, I tried several um..."moves" while I was with paramours. I was with one man and during our lovemaking, I whispered into him, "My king, my king."

He reared up and his whole body flashed with power and majesty. His whole face changed. He grabbed the back of my neck and kissed me very hard. It was a powerful, amazing moment. He and I still talk about it (I think it cemented our friendship, though we live in different states). It was powerful, sensual, and it spoke to him in a way that he did not fully understand.

So...some of these experiences might not be entirely made up.

How's that for too personal? GRIN.

Edmond


message 25: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca (Rebecca_Cohen) | 90 comments Edmond, have a fanastic rest of chat - it's dinner time here in the land of cheese and chocolate, and I'm off out for dinner.

All the best with the release, and the five to follow!


Catch you on facebook :)


Rebecca


message 26: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Thanks for stopping by, Rebecca! I had fun chatting with you. Enjoy the chocolate and cheese...oh man. Now I'm hungry.


message 27: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Um...Carol Ann, I just read my answer to your second question. I believe I meant to say "secret coves" not secret code.

Secret code is what's used on wikileaks.org


message 28: by Margaret (new)

Margaret | 5 comments Edmond - Loved the book! As long as you're getting personal, do you believe that we all secretly desire monogomy and one true love?


message 29: by Carole-Ann (new)

Carole-Ann (BlueOpal) | 36 comments I don't mind 'codes' as opposed to 'coves' - gets the little grey cells churning!! :)

I visited SF nearly 20 years ago, with my teenage daughters, for about 3 days, and we couldn't sight-see enough!! It is an incredible place! Thank you for answering 'that' question - sounds a great guy!


message 30: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Hi Margaret,

Wow, great question.

That topic is addressed in Book 2! I can't believe someone asked about that. LOL.

I'll answer your question in an uncharacteristically short manner:

Do ALL people want that? No.

Do I want that for me? Yes.

Do I think MOST people want that? Yes.

But not everybody wants it.

I think Vin is a good case...I think he wants true love, but he doesn't think it's possible for him. So what options remain to him? Casual sex leaves him cold. But on these King Weekends he gets to fall in love and "love with all his love."

He hints at the misery he will feel after he and Perry depart.

I think it's hard to keep your heart open to love. I remember being 20 and thinking the possibilities of finding my One True Love were limitless! At 25, I felt very confident. By 35, I had been in love a few times, and while I cherish the experience of being in love...I wasn't so sure.

I'm almost 45. Do I believe in love? YES. Do I believe it can happen for me? YES. Am I confident it will? Well...less confident.

But that is the challenge in this world, isn't it? How do you keep your heart open to love and the possibility it could show up any day...or not?

Thank you, Margaret. If you're interested in this question, I bet you'll like Book 2 where the next king struggles with this very thing.

Edmond


message 31: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Carole-Ann, I know exactly what you meant about SF.

It is not the city where I will live during this lifetime, but being a "guest resident" for four months was just a delight. I remember buying groceries for spaghetti one night for dinner. I was trudging up some big hill back to the 3-story Victorian house where I had the gorgeous top-level studio apartment, and the bags were heavy.

I shifted them from arm to arm...grumbling, silently complaining, french bread sticking out the top of the paper bag.

Then I started grinning from ear to ear. I live here! I'm living here! I did a little dance on the street.

Best. Spaghetti. Ever.


message 32: by Joel (new)

Joel Skelton | 90 comments Hey Edward,
Hello from another DSP Minnesota (Eden Prairie) author. Congrats on King Perry. Love the cover and like others have commented, the First Time Author vid is hysterical!!! Bravo!
I wish you enormous sales and happy writing in the future.

Joel


message 33: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments HEEEEY!

Joel of Eden Prairie! INSERT MINNESOTA FIST BUMP!

How wonderful of you to say hello, bud. I'm glad you enjoyed the 'First Time Author' video. That was just silliness. Hasn't everyone who wrote a book fostered hopes of Oprah calling and saying, "My show would be incomplete if you weren't on the show discussing your book."

It's the equivalent of Santa coming to Rudolph and saying, "With your nose so bright, won't you pull my sleight tonight."

I think we all want to be Rudolph.

Let's hang out, Joel, if you're interested. We can do Minnesota things like drink bear, talk about fishing, and avoid hugging at the end of the encounter. I'm having a book release party on March 31st at Grumpy's bar. You should come. :-)

Uh...anyone reading this in Minnesota who wants to show up for free beer and onion rings: you should come!


message 34: by Margaret (new)

Margaret | 5 comments Great question? AWESOME answer; you sound like a real romantic with an open, hopeful heart in love with life! I can't wait for more books.

Was there someone in your life who helped restore your kingship?


message 35: by Joel (new)

Joel Skelton | 90 comments You Betcha! Fist bump back attacha! Would love to hang sometime, Edmond. I'll sure try and make Grumpy's. If that doesn't happen, I'll be in touch. We can swap casserole recipes. Eh??


message 36: by Mike (new)

Mike | 4 comments I've noticed Oprah hasn't weighed in on this discussion yet. Is she mad at you about something? I mean, you *did* take the lion's share of the eggrolls, but, still...


message 37: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Aw, Margaret, this question makes me smile. I think I could spend my whole life answering this because I happen to know *amazing* people.

Somewhere out there is a guy thinking, Why don't I know anyone who inspires me, who loves me for who I am, who makes me a better person?" Well, buddy, that's because somehow I got your share of awesome people in my life.

My best friend Ann has loved me for many years and she inspires me to live out my best self. She pushes me. She disagrees with me. She will blatantly tell me if I am WRONG. She has also loved my writing long before it was any good. Oh, I shudder to think of the things she read for me and still managed to convince me to keep writing. Poor woman. LOL...

Actually, she and I make a cameo in King Perry. GRIN. There's a scene on the Golden Gate Bridge where Vin and Perry run into some strangers:

***
A few clicks later we meet two best friends vacationing together, a gay man and straight woman, both in their midforties. They have been friends for twenty-one years and know now that if neither of them ever marries, they will always have the devoted love of this lifelong friendship. They decided to take an anniversary trip to celebrate their love, the flavor that it is.

We trade anecdotes with them, discuss favorite restaurants, and they tease each other like a married couple, making Perry and me laugh at their overly familiar commentary.

***


message 38: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Joel, yes, we should definitely connect. I have this amazing broccoli casserole that you're going to love. You sprinkle crumbled potato chips on top. The secret is to use ruffled chips. You'll love it.


message 39: by L.C. (new)

L.C. (LC_Chase) | 17 comments Edmond wrote: "Actually, she and I make a cameo in King Perry. GRIN. There's a scene on the Golden Gate Bridge where Vin and Perry run into some strangers: ..."

That was you and your friend, Anne?! Do you make a cameo anywhere else, Edmond? I loved all your secondary characters. Every single person Vin and Perry came across was rich in character and unique in personality. Definitely a wonderful cast full of vigor. ;-)


message 40: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Mike, Oprah is embarrassed to call because she borrowed a muffin pan from me and lost it. She doesn't want to admit that she lost it, so she's avoiding me. Honestly, just buy me a new muffin pan and get over it, Oprah.

It wasn't that great a muffin pan anyway.


message 41: by Margaret (new)

Margaret | 5 comments Edmond wrote: "It is not the city where I will live during this lifetime, but being a "guest resident" for four months was just a delight..."

Where else have you resided, permanently or as a guest? Are there places or settings that particularly resonate with you?


message 42: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Um...L.C. did you say, "vigor?" LOL.

Naw, that was it for me (and Ann). People ask me if I'm Vin in the book. NOPE. But I *am* in the book on the Golden Gate Bridge.

I have all kings of stories in my head for what was going on with Tired Mom and the Ponytailed Caterer...

I think that's the best part of this life we share together: you meet someone, have a great interaction with them, and yet you have no idea what kind of amazing life they have without ever intersecting your again.

Although a few of these people we may see again. Vin's brother, Malcolm, King Liam... ;-)


message 43: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Margaret wrote: Where else have you resided, permanently or as a guest? Are there places or settings that particularly resonate with you?

YES!

I grew up outside of Chicago, IL. I love Chicago, the only city where someone can yell, "WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?" and they really, genuinely want to know.

I love Portland, OR.

I like Sienna, Italy.

I like Des Moines, Iowa because it's this ridiculously gorgeous city springing up out of Iowa's farm country, defiantly claiming, "Yeah, we're a real city. Get over it."

I like Old Town in Alexandria, VA, St. Petersburg, Florida, dozens of small towns in northern California, oh, the lists go on and on. I love small-medium sized cities.

I grew up in a very small town (population 1200) so big cities like NYC sometimes intimidate the hell out of me, but I do enjoy visiting for a while.


message 44: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Favorite New York city story: I was in a remote area of Central Park and eagerly called my folks back home to say, "Hey, I'm in a part of Central Park EXACTLY like where they always show bodies discovered on Law & Order!"

My Mom said quietly, "Just like where they find the bodies, huh?"

I looked around, saw nobody nearby, and told mom, "I gotta go." I hustled my way to other people.


message 45: by Margaret (new)

Margaret | 5 comments You have introduced us to a wonderful cast of characters in your blog. Do you ever consider writing more non-fiction outside the blog?


message 46: by Mike (last edited Mar 03, 2012 12:30PM) (new)

Mike | 4 comments Both Tired Mom and Ponytailed Caterer are two of my favorite queens from your book. (Weird how I feel the need to say, "No, not *that* kind of queen here). Ponytailed Caterer won Vin's heart, and Tired Mom won mine. Watching people respond to complete strangers with loving kindness...such an incredible thing to witness. I love seeing men offer their seats on the bus to others who look tired or burdened. Makes me proud to be a man.

Your characters are so compelling, and everyday people I encounter remind me of them. The beautiful part of it all is that when they remind me of the characters in your book, it also reminds me that I have a choice to give my love or keep it hidden. That's what makes your book so powerful to me.

(Oh, and I had saffron soup from my favorite Somali chef today at the Midtown Market. Always makes me think of King Abbee!)


message 47: by Margaret (new)

Margaret | 5 comments What have you been doing to celebrate the release?


message 48: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Margaret wrote: "You have introduced us to a wonderful cast of characters in your blog. Do you ever consider writing more non-fiction outside the blog?"

Ya know, I have a friend who tells me I should try to get some of my blog stories published in book form or do something with them.

I dunno...maybe I should consider that equally.

I feel like my blog is sort of my "public journal." I get to write full stories there - a short story with a beginning and an end - without worrying about the kind of novel-length considerations that go into a larger piece of writing. I find it freeing.

Also, as you can probably tell, I do a wee bit less editing. This is my casual writing. Honestly, I've never taken the non-fiction as seriously as the fiction and maybe I should.

Margaret for your entertainment, I'm sharing an ooooooold entry but one I think is funny. But partially what makes this hilarious is that this was the TOP STORY on my blog while I was interviewing for a full-time job a number of years ago. During my phone interview they referenced stuff from my blog, which means...they saw this headline. Ugh.

http://www.edmondmanning.com/2008/03/...


message 49: by Edmond (new)

Edmond Manning (EdmondJ) | 116 comments Mike wrote: I love seeing men offer their seats on the bus to others who look tired or burdened. Makes me proud to be a man.

I know! When I witness these random acts of kindness like that, I am like, "Alright. Somebody's getting hugged. Get over here."

People can be awful to each other. But you know what? We can be really amazing at times...unaccountably beautiful.

I'm sure King Aabee would enjoy your soup as well, Mike.


message 50: by Mike (new)

Mike | 4 comments ...and my eggrolls.


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