02 Apr '13

LGBT Event Day 2 : Tibby Armstrong "Coming Out Isn’t “The End” plus Giveaway

Posted in Uncategorized / 45 Comments

Apparently I write coming out stories. I never knew this type of story was a trope until I wrote one. And then another, and another. Now I’m working on a fourth. Tentatively titled Out Takes, the most recent book in the Hollywood series follows the lives of two characters, actors Kit Harris and Jeremy Ash, from my novel Acting Out.

Jeremy Ash, an aspiring actor, is single, gorgeous…and openly, quietly gay. When he lands a starring role opposite America’s favorite former child star, 21-year old Kit Harris, he’s ecstatic and more than a little attracted to the enigmatic star.

Kit Harris’s career has been flagging and his agent promises this new film, an edgy coming out story with a famed director, is just the thing to get it back on track. The problem is that the film is relatively intimate in nature, and Kit’s definitely not gay. He’s not even slightly bent.

When the two men collide in a crushing first kiss that leaves both gasping for air, Kit’s left reeling and Jeremy’s left wanting. And that was just the audition. When filming starts and the two men are brought into close proximity every day, passions ignite and souls collide–both on screen and off. The two men find that the only way to assuage their mutual lust is to give in to it. Kit’s sure this strange new attraction will run its course; Jeremy’s hoping it never has to end.

But when a manipulative model obtains salacious film footage of the two men in bed, Kit’s prepared to do whatever it takes to save his career. But how far is too far to push the boundaries of love and how long can one man hide from himself?

Kit is out. Not comfortably so, but he has at least crossed out of the dark and into the limelight. For Out Takes I asked myself what happens when coming out doesn’t go smoothly. When the world doesn’t applaud your choice and you’re faced with having to fight to be yourself in a very public arena. What would you do in order to maintain your hold on your sense of self? Safety? Relationship?

Coming out doesn’t end when someone announces, “I’m gay.” If we’re not honest with the world about who we love, we’re probably not being honest about a whole bunch of things. Once we open the door to that honesty, however, things begin to snowball. The ride to destiny picks up momentum, gathering speed until it crashes into an object I call Fate. Fate is 1 part external world and 99 percent ourselves, just waiting to happen. Well, Kit is about to meet his Fate, and it’s covered in chocolate icing and a whole lot of fondant.

Contrary character that Kit is, he wants to know, if I’m so smart, whether or not I realize why I write coming out stories. Have I thought about why this issue is so important to me that I can’t seem to tackle any other flavor from the GLBT pile of tropes?

Why, yes, Kit. Yes, I have.

When I was in high school I fell in love with my best friend. We were bashed pretty heavily by people who “read” us as a couple, and the scars remain to this day. I’m bisexual, but not really comfortable with my sexuality. I still stutter over my personal history when telling folks.

Only my closest friends for the longest time knew the details behind my marriage. The relationship lasted from my fifteenth birthday until my 39th. In all that time I barely ever had to come out because he had gender reassignment surgery. I went from being in love with my girlfriend to being in love with my boyfriend in the space of a very few years. If you think people don’t understand homosexuality or bisexuality, try transsexuality.

It’s safe to say that in one way or another I’ve experienced every color in the GLBT rainbow. All in one relationship. Without ever officially coming out while I was married. The topic was rarely broached because my husband wanted to be known as a man, not a man who used to be a woman. He also didn’t want to end up the dead hero of a movie like Boys Don’t Cry. Most certainly fair enough. In order to accommodate his wishes, however, I had to remain closeted myself for the most part. That kind of pressure is a lot for a psyche to take over 25 years.

So yes, in this series I’m writing what I know and what I’ve struggled with, albeit though the lens of a male couple. No matter the gender, the experiences are the same, and these are deeply personal books for me. They’re also a lot of sexy fun too, because these guys wouldn’t have it any other way! If you’d like to read the unedited first chapter of Out Takes, it’s up on my blog at http://www.tibbyarmstrong.com.

And now the important questions: If you’re baking a cake, chocolate or vanilla? Butter cream or cream cheese frosting? And do the roses on top always have to be white? These are the questions that really matter, because, as Kit knows, not much can’t be fixed with a little powdered sugar and a lot of icing.

Happy reading!

About Tibby

Romance author, Tibby Armstrong, has a lust for books and a love of travel.

On the terrestrial plane, she dreams of springtime in Paris, and has journeyed across the pond to London, Oxford, and Bath. She travels more extensively, through worlds both strange and familiar, via science fiction, urban fantasy,  mystery, romance, biography, and travel memoirs.

Tibby’s favorite authors include Connie Willis, Elizabeth Moon, C.E. Murphy, Maria V. Snyder, Karen Marie Moning, Charlaine Harris, and Jane Austen, to name a few. To see the rest, and read some reviews, find her extensive reading list on GoodReads.

Having recently completed her MLS, when she’s not writing, Tibby works toward defying librarian stereotypes; yet, she lives with four cats, two computers, and enough books to collapse a poorly engineered house.

You can find Tibby on Facebook as Tibby Armstrong and on Twitter as @TibbyArmstrong. Or, email her directly at Tibby@TibbyArmstrong.com.


45 Responses to “LGBT Event Day 2 : Tibby Armstrong "Coming Out Isn’t “The End” plus Giveaway”

  1. Incredible post, Tibby. I already loved & admired you, and now it's that plus ten times more. Keep those wonderful books coming, my friend.

  2. You've been my favorite person for a while now and nothing's gonna change that. I think you're an AMAZING author and an INCREDIBLE person. I can't wait to read Kit and Jeremy's continuation. They're two of my favorite men (other than Greg and Aaron of course!)

    If I were baking a cake, it'd be yellow so I could lick the batter off the spoon and chocolate

    • MK, you are an inspiration. Thank you for your loyal support of this series and your daily friendship.

      As for the batter, I think you just gave me a new scene for the boys. 😉


  3. Great post! I love finding new-to-me authors. Looks like I'll be adding to my TBR list. 🙂

    My cake is definitely vanilla with cream cheese frosting (or the really sweet white icing; never buttercream) and the rose color can vary.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

    bimmergrlmd at gmail dot com

    • Hi Barbara!

      Thank you for visiting with me. I adore cream cheese frosting, so I like you already. 🙂

      I hope you enjoy the series. I'd love to hear your thoughts on it AND baking any time.

      Happy reading!

  4. This post had me in tears. Your story would be difficult to believe as a novel– yet it is your real life. Thanks for sharing such an amazing, powerful story!

    brendurbanist at gmail dot com

  5. I was too overwrought to answer the cake question. How about buttercream frosting on cream cheese icing— skip the cake!

  6. Brenda,

    Thank you for your heartfelt message. I'm deeply touched. Sometimes I forget that such wonderful connections are forged in fire. Thank you for reaching out.

    With much gratitude,

  7. What an amzing person you are. What a personal story and the books sound really good too – especially the one 'after'.
    And cakes – def chocolate and def butter cream frosting!


    • I don't know why I'm so amazed by the support you all have shown today, but it makes it so much easier to have made myself vulnerable here. I can't tell you how much that means to me. There are no words.

      As for the cakes, is there really any bad combination? I think I need to go home and bake!

      With much gratitude,

  8. I've been a fan for a long time Tibby and now I'm even more of a fan. You just shared a huge piece of your life that you didn't have to and I applaud you and thank you. I know when I interviewed you last year we touched on some of this but not all. I'm constantly amazed by you and you already know how much I love this very personal series you have created. Hugs my friend, I

  9. Oh, I forgot to answer about the cake. For me it would be vanilla, with no frosting and then of course no decorations. I like plain cake, I swipe all the frosting off. But IF I was doing one for an occasion, I'd do a full sheet 1/2 vanilla, 1/2 chocolate with buttercream frosting and I'd do mums instead of roses in beautiful summer colors!

  10. You are a new to me author and I'm looking forward to reading your stories. Thank you so much for sharing a part of your life with us.

    Oh, and for the cake. Chocolate with extra thick butter cream frosting.

  11. I wouldn't bake a cake but if someone else offered I would pick a vanilla cake (but prefer angel food or carrot cake). Then I would pick chocolate butter cream for the vanilla cake. I would say who cares what color the flower decorations are, it's just going to end up in my stomach.


  12. @Slick

    I'm overcome with emotion. I don't know what to say. Thank you for walking beside me and supporting these books. It has been an honor and a pleasure getting to know you.

    As for the cake, if you're baking I'm eating!

    Hugs and sincere thanks for everything you do,

  13. @Susan W.

    Hi, Susan.

    Thank you for chiming in with your support. I am looking forward to sharing these books with you. I hope you enjoy them as deeply as I loved writing them.

    I have a not so secret affinity for the cake/frosting combo you chose. The vanilla buttercream is a great chocolate chaser. That with a big

  14. @Karl

    Loved your reply! It made me lol. Jeremy is like you. He just wants the cake. The icing is extra. 😉

    Enjoy the roses wherever you find them. On the cake, in the garden, or in your stomach.

    Happy reading,

  15. Thank you for sharing your personal experience it's very touching!!

    I like white cake with cream cheese frosting…chocolate cake with chocolate frosting never white frosting…it looks funny and doesn't taste as good!

  16. Loved reading the post!
    Chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting. I much prefer whipped cream frosting but that wasn't a choice. 🙂

  17. I just want to hug the stuffing out of you. Such an amazing post and such bravery to go for it.

    As for cake….well the only icing I like is whipped cream frosting or caramel icing, which I can eat straight from the tub.

  18. Thanks for sharing your journey and your pain, that takes a lot of courage. I am not that fond of cakes but I would probably mix the chocolate and the vanilla and go for the buttercream frosting (unless I could work pineapple in there somewhere, lol).

  19. Dark Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Raspberry Frosting! 😀 I'd add French Vanilla ice cream on the side ^_^


  20. @Sasha Devlin

    I'm a great admirer or yours Sasha. Your hug is returned double.

    When I make cake I'm often surprised any frosting makes it to the table on the dessert. *hands you a spoon*

    Hugs and love,

  21. @Elf2060

    Hi Elf,

    Thank you for reaching out. The more I share the more the pain turns to joy in the company and solidarity I find in people like you.

    As for the cake, Kit would limit the ingredients only so far as not including liver or fish. He always turns off Cupcake Wars when the haddock is introduced. ;-)

  22. Such a brave post, Tibby, thank you for sharing with readers.

    I don't want to enter into the book running because I've read these books and ADORED them! No Apologies was stellar but Full Disclosure knocked my socks off. There is this one scene where one of the leads is listening to an elderly couple describe what loves means to them and he's relating it back to his

  23. @J9

    It's lovely to see you here J9! Thank you for your support. I'm undeniably humbled and buoyed by the turnout and your praise.

    The scene with Aaron and Bert you mentioned is one of my fave's too. Like with most things I like, it sort of just happened. I'm not sure where it came from, but Bert taught me a

  24. I love all cakes, but if I were to make my own it would be cheesecake!!! I make a sure rich, yummy delicious cheesecake. The kind you want to eat the whole things but know you shouldn't! 😉
    OceanAkers @ aol.com

  25. No Apologies was such a great read. Started on Full Disclosure but got sidetrack with some other shorter reads on my TBR pile. Would love to win Acting Out.

    strive4bst(AT) yahoo(dot)com

  26. Hi Jbst,

    Thank you for reading No Apologies and Full Disclosure. I hope you are able to get back to the latter; it has a really sweet ending. 🙂

    Good luck with Acting Out. I’m working on the follow-up now, a novella called Out Takes and having a lot of fun visiting with Kit and Jeremy again.

    Happy reading!


  27. Sorry, I forgot to answer your question. I love deep dark chocolate cake with cream cheese or ganache (more chocolate to love) frosting. Thank you for sharing your personal story which took a lot of courage to do so, and which I hope was a form of catharsis for you.
    Want to dedicate a special stretch of time to reading Full Disclosure, since I don't want to rush through it.

  28. Tibby,
    What a brave and touching post. Thank you for being open, honest, and real. Huge hugs. I’m so thankful to have become friends. 🙂

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