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by Jose Lima & David Cohen • photography by David Vance

From Navyman to ballet dancer to Revlon’s Global Advertising Director and more––one would think that David Leddick has done it all. According to the 80-year-old Leddick, the answer is no.

At the age of 65, Leddick began his fourth career as a writer and actor. Since then, he has published 21 books, and he has no intention of stopping. Leddick firmly believes living to the fullest during his “middle-age years.” With the publication of his latest book How to be Gay in the 21st Century, Leddick is doing just that.

“Being gay is just like being Swedish. It’s a little different, but in no important way.” Or that’s what Leddick thought in 2005, as he was beginning to write this book. After getting a grip on what it is like to be gay in the 21st century, everything changed..

Leddick had many reasons to wait until after the new century to begin this book. “When I wrote this book five years into this new century, I felt many gay men still interacted with the world in a very old fashioned way,” stated Leddick. “They just weren’t ready to see it, and it has taken a while for people to grasp how different things have become.”

In this book, Leddick uses humor to explore the 21st century’s mind set on how to get gay right. As the cover states, “There’s nothing wrong with being gay, but a lot of people do it wrong.” Leddick looks at old clichés and taboos that need to be discarded and declares his mantra: find out who you really are and have the courage to create your life.

Being born in the 1930s, Leddick has seen much evolution in the gay world–especially during the beginning of this century. “There is a growing feeling that life is about fulfillment, not about what the neighbors think,” says Leddick. “I think you change as you are fulfilled.”

The 70-page humorous how-to-be-gay guide features witty and wicked photos of Leddick at the beginning of each chapter. The photos were ttaken by photographer David Vance. The book is dedicated to one of Leddick’s heroes, Quentin Crisp, who left a huge impact on his life. Leddick wrote, “I can only hope he would like this book: He probably wouldn’t.”

Leddick’s career as an author has included numerous fiction and nonfiction books. He has a number of art books focusing on the male body including The Nude MaleNaked in the SunMale Nude, and Male Nude Now.

Inspired by the art world in the late 1920s to the early 1950s, Leddick wrote the biography Intimate Companions: A Triography of George Platt Lynes, Paul Cadmus, Lincoln Kirstein, and Their Circle (2000).

Working as a dancer at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City in the 1950s gave Leddick the inspiration for his second novel The Sex Squad (1998), a tale of the golden age of the ‘50s at the Opera’s ballet.

Leddick has also written and performed in six musicals, and appears regularly on the various Sout Florida stages.

Leddick’s new blog “David’s Gay Dish” has quickly become a magnet for straight women and hetrosexual couples. “My work is ringing bells for many people who are not gay because I encourage my readers to reject what others might want them to be,” says Leddick.
“I advise everyone to know who you are, what will make you happy, and then pursue it.”
Leddick’s next two books, scheduled for release in the summer of 2012, are Meaningless Hugs, Meaningless Kisses and Hitting 80/Doing 100.
On the topic of aging, Leddick promises to forge forward. “I think living in your 80s is just middle-age. You can keep growing, keep changing, keep loving, and enjoy adventure. You can’t chicken out just because you’re older–you just have to be brave, which has been necessary all your life. Perhaps it has taken all these years to see what you’d like to experience in life. Now you must do it.”
Published by White Lake Press, How to Be Gay in the 21st Century is available for purchase at www.davidleddick.net ($14.95). You also can visit his blog www.davidgaydish.blogspot.com.

 
 
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Monday, October 10th, 2011

by Aaron Brost
In her debut children’s book Luvable Lucinda: “Jacob and the Bullies” published by AuthorHouse author Mariette Herold educates young readers on the effects of bullying while delivering an engaging tale of fantasy, magic, humor and exploration.  The fairy tale features a princess and prince who must stop a neighbor from being bullied by two classmates while navigating a nasty spell by the Dark Witch.  Herold intends for Luvable Lucinda to be a series of 10 books dealing with topics such as kindness, good manners, social skills, helping others, etc. that each deliver an important message or lesson.


More information can be found at www.LuvableLucinda.com.
Source: AuthorHouse, authorhouse.com


 
 
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Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

“Female Force: Kathy Griffin-The Whole Damned Story” and “Female Force: Ruth Handler, the Creator of Barbie” are scheduled to hit newsstands, comic bookstores and online venues on Wednesday, June 15.

The upcoming Griffin biography uniquely examines the comedian’s early years and how it shaped and propelled her rise to one of the most outrageously outspoken and polarizing performers. It also features how Griffin also makes a difference in the world from her outreach in various communities such as the LGBT community. “Female Force: Kathy Griffin-The Whole Damned Story” was written by Marc Shapiro and penciled by Gene DeCicco.

“ The Handler/Barbie biography penciled by Neil Alexander tells the story of how America’s favorite fashion doll emerged from the seedy underworld of German sex symbols and cigarette shop gag gifts to become one of history’s most iconic women. Barbie and her creators, specifically Handler, will leave her (Barbie and Handler) maybe a bit exposed,” issue author Tara Broeckel revealed. “Their collective story is so complex that often times the darker narrative is left untold.”

Bluewater first published the “Female Force” titles in 2008 as a broad examination of strong and influential women who are shaping modern history and culture. In past issues, the monthly series has featured Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, Margaret Thatcher, JK Rowling, Sarah Palin and others.  Upcoming “Female Force” comic book subjects are Martha Stewart, & Ayn Rand.

Each issue retails for $3.99. For more information, visit www.bluewaterprod.com.


 
 
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Friday, April 1st, 2011
Famed ABC soap star Susan Lucci discusses her childhood and career in her book, All My Life: A Memoiron sale as of March 29, 2011.

When Lucci and All My Children were introduced to the world in 1971, American television changed forever. Lucci’s character, the beautiful, spirited, and mercurial Erica Kane, was an original—the first vixen viewers loved to hate. But while millions have enjoyed getting to know Erica’s many sides—and have been awed at how this character has continually remade herself—the woman who plays her has remained a mystery.

In her memoir, this private actress, wife, mother, daughter, grandmother, sister, friend, and entrepreneur pulls back the curtain to reveal her story.

Lucci, like Erica Kane, has undergone a metamorphosis many times. All My Life shares the stories of those transformations: starring in roles on television and stage, where she took Broadway not just by storm but “by tsunami” as one critic raved about her performance inAnnie Get Your Gun; mounting successful cabaret acts (solo and with Regis Philbin); bringing art and joy back to New York in the wake of 9/11; conquering the tango with Tony Dovolani on ABC’s hit show Dancing with the Stars; and building a successful career as an entrepreneur with a signature line of products.

Lucci goes beyond her success to talk about the darker moments, too, including the childhood guilt she harbored over the death of her dear grandmother, the car accident that nearly took away her career and her eyesight, her newborn son’s life-threatening illness, coping with her husband’s cancer, and the pain of miscarriage—one of the many parallels between her Erica Kane.

As charming, down-to-earth, and compelling as the woman whose story it tells, All My Life shines a spotlight on one of our most popular stars and reminds us of the power of dreams and how we can find the courage and tenacity to make them come true.
Source: Book Description by publisher Harper Collins via www.hapercollins.com.

 
 
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Teen pop sensation Justin Bieber has it all: A booming musical career, a dedicated fan base, a smile that makes young girls swoon and an innocence that makes parents smile. Now Bieber is set to become a comic book hero when Bluewater Productions taps his life story for its popular Fame series of biographical comics. Bieber certainly has a story worth telling. He’s a self-made star who used technology and social networking to promote himself and his music. He also happens to make music that’s undeniably infectious.

Writer Tara Broeckel Ooten said that while researching the comic she became convinced that Bieber has what it takes to craft a long musical career. “I’m reminded of the stories my mom tells about when she was young and Beatelmania invaded the United States. For me it was New Kids on the Block,” Broeckel Ooten said. “Now today’s teens and tweens go wild for Justin, and rightly so. He is a talented young musician. He has such an enormous global fan base. That and his talent will probably give him some real staying power in the industry.” and she continues to express her feelings “I listened to Bieber’s music for the first time while working on this project, and I have to admit, it can really stick with you, I would hear it played somewhere, usually in Target, and I’d start singing along. I respect the musicianship that Bieber brings to his projects.”

Claudio Avella is the artist on the book, and Broeckel Ooten said that he perfectly captured the feel of her story. “He is an extraordinary talent,” Broeckel Ooten said of Avella. “His work has a real energy and life to it, a positive energy that works well for this book.”

Bieber joins a long list of celebrities on the Bluewater’s Fame series list. Lady Gaga and Twilight star Robert Pattinson, both of whose Fame issues sold out of their first runs, along with Tyler Lautner and soccer star David Beckham.  Two new issues of Fame come out this month featuring Kristen Stewart and Taylor Swift.

Darren G. Davis, founder and president of Bluewater Productions, says that the biographical comics continually bring new readers to sequential storytelling.  “This is a great medium for kids as well as adults.  I had a hard time reading as a kid and comic books really improved my reading skills. One of the goals is trying to get kids away from the video games and reading more. With the Fame series, we have succeeded in exposing comic books to readers who otherwise wouldn’t pick up, say, an issue of Spider-Man.” and he continues with confidence “I’m certain that our Justin Bieber comic will do the same; he certainly has a devoted group of fans whom I’m sure will be thrilled to see their favorite performer immortalized in comic form.”

Fame: Justin Bieber is a traditional biography comic book and will hit comic book shops and online retailers in October. This 32-page issue will retail for $3.99.

You can check out exclusive pages of the Fame: Justin Bieber comic book visit  RADARONLINE.COM and clicking http://bit.ly/8ZHVUn.  To pre-order the comic book visitwww.comicshoplocator.com .

Bluewater aims to unite cutting-edge art and engaging stories produced by its stable of the publishing industry’s top artists and writers.  For more information, visit www.bluewaterprod.com.

 
 
Thursday, May 27th, 2010
To win one of Michael’s new book Between Boyfriends, please e-mail your name, phone/cell, city to:  giveaways[at]pinkmag.com
Michael Salvatore’s debut novel, BETWEEN BOYFRIENDS, is in stores now. This fresh, funny and sexy story is sure to get you attention on Fire Island, Provincetown…or even the Jersey Shore. Whatever your “situation”, BETWEEN BOYFRIENDS is sure to please. 
Published by Kensington, Paperback, $15.00 ($17.95 Canada)

PINK: Why did you want to write this novel?
Michael: I simply set out to write a story about a gay man that is both honest and hysterically funny and I believe I achieved my goal.


Do you think your novel has crossover appeal to a straight audience?
Definitely.  While Steven, the main character, and his friends are gay, what grounds the book is Steven’s relationship with his family, especially his mother.  This relationship broadens the appeal of the book so it’s more of one man’s journey to find his place in this world and not just a gay man’s search for the perfect boyfriend.  Because of that difference the characters and their exploits will appeal to everyone.


Is this novel autobiographical?
No, not in the true sense.  There are elements of the book that mimic pieces of my own life such as being a Jersey boy and having strong family ties in New Jersey.  My mother did live in the Rocco Impreveduto Towers which I turned into the Salvatore DeNuccio Towers so there are things like that, but sadly I don’t produce a soap opera nor am I friends with any Olympic figure skaters.

How did you pick the careers and likes of all the characters?
That’s where art does imitate life.  I love figure skating, soap operas, theatre, ‘70s television, and London so I threw all of that stuff into the novel.  I thought I may never get another chance to write a novel so I might as well use all my favorite things in this book.  It also made it easier to focus on plot and characterization since I didn’t have to do any research to find out specific things like how to spell a certain Russian figure skater’s name.

Who should play Steven in the TV series?
I actually didn’t write the part of Steven with anyone specific in mind, but I think when it becomes a TV series, which it definitely needs to be since TV needs a new gay role model, it should be an unknown, somebody who doesn’t come with any baggage and someone the audience can relate to.  Having said that, however, Kevin Rikaart, an actor on my favorite soap, The Young and The Restless, would be perfect.  Beyond that, John Stamos would make the ideal Gus and I’m sure he can do a British accent.  I also really like Marc Blucas who was Buffy’s boyfriend for a while as Flynn and there has to be a blonde Mario Cantone out there who could bring Lindsay to life.

The novel does have some dramatic elements, did you include these specifically to offset the humor?
Yes, I wanted the novel to portray the real year in the life of a gay man and in order for the reader to accept the madcap adventures I think they need to root for the protagonist, a good way to do that is to put him into some real, dramatic situations.  The struggle for me has been to find a balance since I have a tendency to write a bit melodramatically in the first draft or in an outline.  The dramatic beats are there, but I tend to overplay them and make them larger than life so they don’t have the same impact.  Larger than life works when it’s comedy, but if you’re trying to convey honest, raw emotion, I believe, it’s best to simplify.  Simply write the situation with some grace and the reader will have an emotional reaction.  The most important thing I’ve discovered is that readers and audiences respond to the humor in my writing, whether it be a play or fiction, so I have decided to stick with what I  know I can do.

 
 
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 Thursday, May 27th, 2010
Summertime is travel time and most of us are on the lookout for that perfect memory. You know the one – your favorite picture that makes you laugh, cry or transports you back in time just by looking at it. Capturing the perfect moment can be a matter of luck but forMarcelo Bendahan, author of the new book Jerusalem Always, it was a labor of love.

In Jerusalem Always, Marcelo demonstrates his innate ability to capture life and light with remarkable insight into the human soul. He lets his work ‘speak for itself’ to reveal the positive, vibrant, and wonderful nature of an often misunderstood city with a turbulent history.

“The city’s vitality and colorfulness constantly enchanted and amazed me,” adds Bendahan, “My hope is Jerusalem Always brings the awesome beauty of the city to life.”

Available on www.amazon.comwww.barnesandnoble.com,www.maestrobooks.nl/order.html and in bookstores throughout the United States and Canada.

 
 
Michelangelo was a shining star of the Renaissance and a genius of consummate virtuosity. His achievements as a sculptor, painter, draughtsman, and architect are unique—no artist before or after him has ever produced such a vast, multi-faceted, and wide-ranging oeuvre.

This special edition explores Michelangelo’s life and work in depth and detail, and is the second publication in TASCHEN’s new series of GOLDEN BOOKS created to celebrate the company’s 30th anniversary. The different parts of the book concentrate on the life of Michelangelo via an extensive and copiously illustrated biographical essay and include gorgeous, full page reproductions and enlarged details that bring readers up close to the works.

Michelangelo – Life and Work – Hardcover 9.6 x 14.6 in – 368 pages at $ 39.90

 
 
Friday, April 30th, 2010
Dr. Charlyn Belluzzo offers ways for busy moms to engage their senses to help reconnect with the richness of life – despite a busy schedule.

Moms are known for giving to everyone else, and not taking enough time for themselves. Health and wellness expert Dr. Charlyn Belluzzo, author of Authentic Sensual Living, offers tips for moms and busy people everywhere to help manage daily stress and replace it with authentic sensual living.

Experts reveal that engaging our senses – the rich world of sight, sound, smell, taste, touch and intuition, can influence moods and counteract stress. Dr. Belluzzo encourages readers to use their senses to live in the moment, so they can be fully present in the now, which can have wonferful affects not only for mom but everyone else she loves and cares for.

Tips offered in Authentic Sensual Living include:
• Learning how to live in the moment and make the most of today
• Mastering simple visualization techniques to clear your mind and approach tough situations
• Reordering your home, your workspace and even to your wardrobe to refresh mind and body

Another tip of Dr. Belluzzo’s is to use the power of scent, since smell is a powerful way to elevate mood. Dr. Belluzzo had created a line of 100% soy candles, available in four sizes and a selection of elegant, soothing fragrances like plumeria, lemongrass and rain. Amorosa Bella candles are so pure, they can be used as a silky moisturizer for your skin as they melt, or for massage.

Authentic Sensual Living (SRP $19.95) is available at amazon.com or amorosabella.com. Amorosa Bella Soy Candles (SRP $6.95 – $24.95) are available exclusively at amorosabella.com.

 
 
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by Deborah Ball
Friday, March 12th, 2010

Versace. The very name conjures up images of outrageous glamour and bold sexuality, opulence and daring. Yet Versace is also the legacy of a great creative genius from a poor, backward part of southern Italy who transformed the fashion world through his intuitive understanding of women, and how a changing culture influenced the way they wanted to dress. The first book in English about the legendary designer, HOUSE OF VERSACE: The Untold Story of Genius, Murder, and Survival (Crown; $26.00) shows how Gianni Versace, with his flamboyant sister Donatella at his side, combined his virtuosic talent and extraordinary ambition to almost single-handedly create the celebrity culture we take for granted today.

Gianni Versace was at the height of his creative powers when he was murdered in Miami Beach. The story was front page news around the world and the manhunt for his killer a media obsession. His beloved sister Donatella demanded no less than a funeral befitting an assassinated head-of-state to be held in Milan’s magnificent cathedral. In what was the ultimate fashion show, the world’s rich and beautiful – Princess Diana, Elton John, Carla Bruni, Naomi Campbell, Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, Anna Wintour and others – gathered to mourn the man who was one of fashion’s great pioneers.

Deborah Ball, a long-time Milan correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, conducted hundreds of interviews with Versace family members, Gianni Versace’s lovers and business rivals, models such as Naomi Campbell whom he helped launch to international stardom, and fashion industry icons including Anna Wintour, the legendary editor of Vogue.

Ball vividly recounts the behind-the scenes struggles – both creative and business – of  Donatella as she stepped out of her brother’s long shadow and took control of the House of Versace. The book offers the first inside look at the enormous challenges Donatella faced in living up to Gianni’s genius, her struggle with a decades-long drug habit, her battles with her brother Santo, and the mystery of why Gianni left control of his house to Donatella’s young daughter, Allegra. HOUSE OF VERSACE is a compelling, highly readable tale of a rise from obscurity, a painful fall, and ultimate redemption as the Versace empire returned to health – for now.