Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Blog Tour & Giveaway - Queen Called Bitch: Tales of a Teenage Bitter Ass Homosexual by Waldell Goode

Title:  Queen Called Bitch: Tales of a Teenage Bitter Ass Homosexual
Author: Waldell Goode
Publisher:  NineStar Press
Release Date: 7/24/17
Heat Level: 1 - No Sex
Pairing: No Romance
Length: 69300
Genre: Memoir, Memoir, Lit, gay, coming of age, African-American, family drama, high school, college, humorous

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A loud-mouth, black, gay teenager struggles to find himself in rural America. After having realized his inability to attend his top-choice school, Waldell Goode embarks on a journey to reevaluate why the grand departure appealed to him in the first place. He learns that as much as he can control his nonexistent love life, there are other factors that aren’t as easily mutable. He comes to terms with his peculiar relationship with his mother, the inevitable heartbreak in store for him no matter how hard he’s tried avoiding it, and the voice of God, in all her beguiling glory.


Queen Called Bitch Waldell Abraham Goode © 2017 All Rights Reserved ONE: Ryan Murphy’s a Fucking Liar I officially begin with this because it is one of the more poignant issues I’ve been dealing with. It’s not that I have anything against Glee. I applaud the nature and success of the series, but I dislike how certain plot points, characters, storylines, and adolescent relationships deviate from realities concurrent with that of the authentic experience of my life. Glee is an excellent series, bringing awareness all across America of certain groups that have been neglected or outcast in a universal school setting. There isn’t any show that has mastered such a feat at the level Glee has, which is why the series remains a phenomenon, reaching and inspiring children all over the world to be themselves and embrace each other’s differences. Unless they’re Asian, in which case they’re promptly reminded to remain silent and take their proper places in the background where they belong; it’s amazing they’re allowed to consider themselves series regulars and not simply extras. I hate what they did with the token Asian character, Tina. They tried making her a more prominent character later in the series, failing miserably. Reflecting on Glee, I would say their portrayal of high school is fairly accurate minus the students who appear to be better suited for an AARP commercial. I would even say my high school career was somewhat similar to Kurt’s, the token gay character. I was unsure of myself freshman year. I spent my time mostly in solitude, trying to avoid much of the ridicule I received in my eighth grade year. I was involved with the drama team where I met fellow weirdos like myself, I was hiding the fact that I’m gay, and I unwittingly thought no one knew it—despite how blatantly obvious it was, and everyone else must have been previously enlightened. Sophomore year was even better. People began to know me and who I was, that I wasn’t a predator and spiritually intertwined with Satan. I came out as completely gay that year. Even I wasn’t buying the bisexual nonsense I fed myself and others in years past. I began to dress as I so desired and fully embraced the inner, gayer me. Being involved with the local university’s theater department, I had become acquainted with more degenerates who celebrated abnormality. Junior year was when I finally came into my own. I led the drama department to a couple of victories as I was cast in the main role, and attended the Governor’s School of Southside Virginia Community College. I enjoyed myself the most that year, even though Governor’s School was stressful as hell and I failed chemistry. Senior year, the focus was on finding money to attend a university or college, and that didn’t happen so I suppose one could consider that a failure, but I considered it an opportunity to fuck around for another semester. My high school career, one could say, was excellent and probably everything it was supposed to be. A necessary step in my life, but I can’t seem to shake the part about loneliness. For my senior trip at Governor’s School, we went on a boat ride for an hour and a half. In a tiny vessel meant for maybe eight to seat comfortably were crammed fifteen people shoulder to shoulder, stuffing packed lunches into their mouths as the tour guide blabbed on and on about the three foot deep lake that takes twenty minutes to travel from shore to shore. Rounding the trip for the fourth or fifth time, my English teacher, sitting beside me, established conversation as a means to keep me either from sleeping, or hauling my ass overboard. Our discussion grew from her love of animals to my high school experience, to her decades—long marriage with her husband of infinite years, and on to the scandal of her marrying her old high school principal. She asked me the one question everyone in my high school career managed to avoid, ignore, or already know the answer to. It was remarkable. Before that moment, I had never considered it. I wanted to contemplate the depth of my relations, possibly due to a lack of allowing myself to ponder the grim truth of deeply rooted negative dispositions I choose to utilize as defense mechanisms. She looked me in the eye and leaned in close. “Waldell, are you lonely?” She spoke as if she was asking about the weather. Although we were gently gliding atop a lake and I had consumed two bottles of water with my complimentary lunch, my mouth ran completely dry. I took a second, regained the wind that had instantaneously been trounced out of my chest, and replied with a smooth and concrete, “No. I have amazing friends.” Somehow she knew. I could see it in her eyes. That wasn’t what she was asking. She would clarify, and there would be no way I could playfully avoid its severity or laugh it off as I had become accustomed to doing. She looked at me with deeper expression now, and asked, “No, but Waldell, are you really lonely?” I began to look away and pretend to notice an area of the lake I previously hadn’t seen; we circled back for the thousandth time and nothing could’ve been missed. I couldn’t avoid it. I couldn’t make it funny, laugh it off, reference my mother or her alcoholism. I could only be honest with my professor, and in doing so, stop lying to myself. This is the one instance I can recall when lighthearted commentary failed to enter my mind when I needed some sort of comical relief… or relief in general. I looked her in the eye again, and with all the gusto I could find out there on the lake with sixty other people strolling along the pier, going about their day, eating their triangularly shaped cold cuts, I told myself the truth for the first time in four years with a single word. “Yes.” And here lies my problem with Glee. Kurt is an amazing character. He’s beautiful, funny, witty, he has flaws, and the greatest attribute a creator may accomplish with any character is the fact he’s human. I appreciated that representation of a homosexual teen in mainstream media. Before him, there weren’t many who closely resembled me. Friends and family who were familiar with the show deemed me “black Kurt,” or “Blurt.” I admired him, the character, his weakness and ultimate triumph over an oppressive society. As Oprah taught the world, one of the singular greatest gifts a person in the media can give is lending voice to the voiceless. That was Kurt Hummel, analogous with millions of gay teens all throughout the world, struggling to find themselves against social pressure and bullying. Kurt, portrayed by Golden Globe Award winner Chris Colfer, was a hero in a generation needing one. I relate to this character. I understand this character; he lives in a small town, I live in small town. He knew he was gay from a very young age, and I remember when I was five and my father told my sisters they were turning me into a faggot. Kurt might as well have been real as far as character development goes. Many people felt or feel as if they know him. My biggest hindrance isn’t Kurt. It’s Kurt and Blaine, the boyfriend he found by transferring to a private magical school for gays only. Where was my Prince Charming, willing to stop the world and sing me thirty-two bars of a romantic cliché written nearly one hundred years ago, warning me of the freezing air outside as a means to keep me inside and eventually sleep with me? Where was my holiday crush, dying to sing a song with me made famous by a legendary songbird and famed homosexual porn star husband? Google Jack Wrangler, your life will be better because of it. I’m happy for the characters. I’m glad that it was as simple as taking a trip to Gay Land, picking out the sweetest model, and driving him back home to live out your days in happy gay bliss while each of you takes turns being more perfect. Kurt and Blaine are so wonderful, they even have sex in a special teenage special gay way, fully clothed, when Kurt loses his virginity. Truth is, there was no guy willing to sing me anything. There isn’t a school of gays you can attend while testing the waters, trying to sniff out the next Neil Patrick Harris. Chances are if you’re a gay male and you’re from a small town, you won’t get many Prince Charmings knocking down your door, willing to make you feel special. Hell, chances are if you’re a gay kid attending high school in a small town, you’re probably the only gay in the vicinity—the only openly gay one, of course. Where was my romance? The best I’ve gotten was a thirty-eight-year-old on Grindr lusting after a minor’s dirty pictures he never received. I didn’t go to the prom with my boyfriend, I was never sung to or caressed in that way, I don’t know what “I love you” means beyond friendship, my first and last kiss occurred in tenth grade and the next day the boy denied it ever happened. The only time I’ve ever been called attractive was by a straight bi-curious friend who considered me his “experiment” that led absolutely nowhere, and the only date I’ve ever been on was a non-date with a gay guy who just wasn’t interested in me that way. Glee is astonishing, but honestly sometimes even after you’ve had the proper revelations and accepted yourself and others around you, life still hurts. It’s not Glee’s fault that I don’t have anyone. I take sole responsibility. But I blame them for hope. I, along with the rest of America, cheered for Kurt and Blaine’s first kiss. However, their kiss didn’t make me any less alone. It’s me who still cries in the middle of the night for reasons I “thought” I didn’t know, but in actuality was avoiding. It’s me who lives with the moment my teacher decided to get personal and made me truthful. It’s me who has no one and continually decides to largely suffer in silence. How do you tell a friend, “Hey, I need you” without sounding weak? How do you admit it to yourself without remembering how painful it is? And how do you still believe in love when it has never happened to you? I falsely call Ryan Murphy a liar, because it has never happened to me. He’s deceitful because he made me forget that characters, while closely resembling real people, are fiction and their stories can have endings that include tremendous declarations of love and overwhelming displays of affection because they’re written in. As a real gay teenager living in a real small town, I have been living the truth of what Glee has to avoid if only for their namesake; there is quite possibly no love story waiting for me.


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My mother left my stepfather twice. Three times in my life, I’ve had to move to Farmville, VA or its neighboring one horse town. I’m realizing now, that one horse might literally suffice as sole transportation. There might be one stop light for forty miles, and that’s just traveling to school. The grass is an incomparable myriad of lush greens and the trees are as diverse and abundant as a celebrated child’s commencing sum of love. 
You have no business. Your neighbors are your responsibility. Respect your mother. Eat your greens. Anyone’s grandma automatically becomes your own and you better not sass back. Because everyone knows everyone and you’ll never get that job at the Dairy Queen with a mouth like that. Marry young. Start your family early. Buy that house not too far from town and drive to Richmond when you need to feel fancy. McDonald’s never really hurt anybody. “Gluten Free” is a Goddamn lie and you better thank the Lord before you swallow a bite. Or someone’s gonna correct you. Say the Pledge of Allegiance except for when your president’s Black on his first day. Read your Bible. Know the important parts. When you meet a stranger, invite them in. Always. 
I met myself in Farmville, VA. All of my bestest best friends and I congregated around the idea of leaving. Brushing off the residual stink of Podunk and meeting the world. And we kind of did. The other day, one of them called me out of the blue. He and I were founding fathers of one specific group that quickly dissolved upon graduation. Of the four of us, one is a grad student in Hungary. One is serving in Germany. The other lives in LA and I’m the face of Converse WHQ in Boston, MA. And knowing this only makes me feel old. 
And lonely, but I’ve said that before. 
Walmart and Sheetz are the only establishments open after 10. You DO NOT go to Walmart to not see people. You go there to feel community. Anyone who denies that is a liar. The roads, dead after 6pm, become the migration route for herds of deer. Even their families are close knit, and they may have an amicable relationship with yours as well. The only traffic jams you see are at 7am, because the elementary school is 100 yards from the middle school, which is 100 yards from the high school. All students on a similar route ride the same bus. Kindergarteners sing the Alphabet Song, twelve year olds pass notes and snicker only to members of the same sex, and high school seniors roll joints and finger each other where Rosa Parks fought to not have to be forced to sit. 
You’re never too far from your next hug, or grinning Farmvillian who loves to help with a story they need to share. The lot of them, I believe, have no idea how valuable they are to each other or their potential in the world. 
They are kind and reliable – even when you disagree. Or when you’ve wronged them. Or when you leave home and don’t get back enough. Pretty much any scenario unless you’ve wronged their favorite cousin, in which case you duck, dance, and run. You have to sneak and smoke pot in the shadows but Open Carry Laws are foreplay. 
I visited recently. I saw my best friend’s family and sobbed when I left. I felt so loved and warm. But it really is all over. The world is cold. I pay for all my own food and you can go your own way. Now I’m forced to. 
We were together back then,
I am less young, now.
It’s a different kind of home. I remember it more than it remembers me. She speaks to me in whispers, that wicked backwoods town. And I’ll stifle a smile holding post at a Fortune 500 company paying me to do so. 

Me on graduation day with my best friends’ moms with my own on the end. 

Tenth grade photo I’m not in but took in tenth grade.

Meet the Author

Waldell Goode was born in Halifax, VA and is currently following dreams in Boston, MA.

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Tour Schedule

7/23    We Three Queens      
7/24    Books,Dreams,Life     
7/25    MillsyLovesBooks      
7/25    MM Good Book Reviews      
7/26    Love Bytes      
7/26    Boy Meets Boy Reviews        
7/27    Divine Magazine        


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