Teddy'sTruth, my debut novel releasing January 12th, 2021, is a book that holds a special place in my heart. When I stumbled into the realm of M/M romances, I never anticipated just how it would change my life. I'd always been an avid reader of Fantasy before, with brief forays into YA. Romances rarely held my interest for long. I was tired of the #DistressedDamsel, and of the far too prevalent, far too damaging representation of the #IdealWoman. She was always young, always pretty in some non-stereotypical way that somehow still ended up cliched, and always either a virgin or sex-apologetic. (You know...the woman with a PAST who has to in some way atone for or redeem it...)
Then I found M/M.
It took me over a year to realize why I was so intrigued by his genre, and another year after that to realize how badly I wanted to contribute. To share even a small place among the many amazing authors who have come together to make it feel like home. The idea for my first novel came to me in pieces. I dreamt of a pink haired ballet dancer who fell in love with his bodyguard.
Teddy's Truth is not that story.
Teddy's Truth is MY story, buried in layers of fiction and prose. I, of course, did not make a deal with a Mexican Cartel. (Let's be honest, I couldn't even make a deal with the five year old gremlin who is currently pretending to clean her room while I pretend to believe her.) I also have no Ian in m life.
However, much of what makes Teddy who he is was built on a foundation of uncertainty and growing self-awareness within myself. Writing Teddy is what helped me to embrace my own truth.
Genderqueer, gender fluid, non-binary...Somewhere on this spectrum is my identity. Like Teddy, I am uncomfortable in the body I was born in, because my physical form has never fit the one I see in my mind. Like Teddy, I've always felt that liking feminine things--my makeup and dresses and heels--was a betrayal of that same vision.
It's taken time (and the help of several fictional characters) to help me realize that I don't have to find the box I fit in. In fact, I do not have to fit myself in a box at all. I can be an androgynous girl or a femme boy or something a bit both but not quite either, and liking makeup doesn't have to change that.
So Teddy's Truth is my story at its heart, and I hope that someday, somehow, another questioning girl, boy or enby, will look at Teddy and see something of themselves, the way I did.
Live Your Truth.
Love Your Truth.