As you probably know by now, this year's charity is the NOH8 campaign. All of the proceeds from Leather and Newfound Land and the other charity sips goes directly to NOH8 - and Torquere Press matches the authors' donation.
Perhaps you've already seen the photos by Adam Bouska (that's the guy in this photo). The NOH8 Campaign is a photographic silent protest created by celebrity photographer Adam Bouska (http://www.bouska.net) and partner Jeff Parshley in direct response to the passage of Proposition 8. Photos feature subjects with duct tape over their mouths, symbolizing their voices being silenced by Prop 8 and similar legislation around the world, with "NOH8" painted on one cheek in protest.
Three years since its inception, the NOH8 Campaign has grown to over 20,000 faces and continues to grow at an exponential rate. The campaign began with portraits of everyday Californians from all walks of life and soon rose to include politicians, military personnel, newlyweds, law enforcement, artists, celebrities, and many more.
However, it's not only photos; there are some amazing stories on NOH8's website - the stories of the people behind the duct tape. I've chosen a couple:
"There were a lot of times where I actually wanted to end my life. I resorted to burning myself, and other self mutilation. I tried "reversing" myself from gay to straight, even looking up summer camps and excorsisms to help me not be this person anymore. At the end of the day, I hated who looked back at me in the mirror.
This lasted until my freshman year of high school. I mustered up the courage to tell one of my best friends at the time that I was gay. She told everyone at school. But instead of getting the reaction that I did back in Junior High, I got the opposite. People supported me. Campaigns like NOH8 supported me, most importantly. It still wasn't perfect, I got bullied here and there of course, but it was still a relief. I flaunted who I was, and took pride."
Read the rest of Spencer's story here.
Other stories are very short, like Mary's:
"I work in a high school in a very conservative small town. Occassionally I see kids struggling with their identities. I want them to know that there is at least one person at school to whom it is safe to come out, or just talk to, if need be."
If you want to read more stories, go to the NOH8 website. And if you want to support the NOH8 by reading some amazing stories, go to Torquere Press' charity sips where you'll find Leather and Newfound Land and 24 other hot, sweet stories.
I read and I write - everything from corporate to kink. My naughty fictional friends are always there to make my life interesting. And pester me, of course. Pesky creatures.