“Remember, kindness should be an instinct… not a decision… Spread the joy!” — Dan Skinner
The Novel Approach welcomes Dan Skinner on his The Price of Dick Blog Tour, both a book and tour our very own Tina Marie played an integral part in. Tina had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Dan, ask him a few questions, and she also managed to get us an exclusive excerpt from the book. Read on to see what Dan has to say, then leave a comment below for your chance to win goodies!
Q: What costume would you wear that would truly show your hidden personality?
A: A costume of Dan Skinner.
Q: Why the lycra/spandex fixation? I know there’s a story there…
A: First guy I saw at my local pool was wearing one and I thought I’d die.
Q: In no more than two sentences, can you describe yourself to a complete stranger?
A: I’m the one the extraterrestrial abducted and threw back out. And as the spaceship doors were closing you could hear them screaming, “And for God’s sake, clean the Probe!”
Q: What is the most sentimental thing someone gave you that you cherish to this day?
A: The answer to this question has been sealed in a document.
Q: How much do you run on an average day?
A: I average no more than 10 miles a day. When I’m stressed that number goes up.
Q: Do you have a plan to gain the weight you’ve lost lately? Does it include cheesecake?
A: If I like the way I fit in clothes, I stay with that weight. If I want to gain weight it will be with some Old Vienna Hot Corn chips. lol
Q: What is your favorite guilty pleasure food? The one your trainer would highly disapprove of?
A: See answer above.
Q: Your top five recommendations of gay films please.
Prayers For Bobby
Eating Out (original)
Q: What is the meanest thing you’ve done to someone in an argument or fight?
A: Broke a coffee table over them.
Q: What song do you have to hear only once to get stuck in your head for an entire day?
A: Any friggin’ Gaga song.
Q: I’d empty my bank account and take out a loan to have sex with____. Why?
A: Prince Harry. Because he’s mine anyway. Everyone knows that.
Q: If you could wish one celebrity into the cornfield, who would it be and why?
A: Sarah Palin. Don’t even get me started why.
Q: Your models all look like they have so much fun during your shoots. Do they? And do you?
A: Them, yes. Me. No. I sweat bullets.
Q: Has it been difficult to stick with your recently adopted NBW (no bad words) policy? Explain a little bit about what NBW is.
A: NBW stands for No Bad Words. My trainer believes that bad words create bad events. I don’t speak them BUT I think them. I purge them on my runs.
Q: Do veggie sausages really taste as good as the real thing?
Q: What is the largest, um… attribute you have seen on a model?
A: Enough that I would never even attempt it.
Q: On a scale of 1-10, ten being a completely controlling perfectionist, how would your models rate your determination to get every little thing perfect in every shot?
Q: I’ve seen one black model in your past work. Why haven’t there been more?
A: I try to get them. But there are very few in the Midwest. When I search the model sites I see tons of black and ethnic models on the east and west coast. I’m always looking tho.
Q: It is said that every traumatic event in life has the potential to make you bitter or better. You seem to have made a conscious choice to make yourself better through this difficult past year. Do you struggle with that sometimes? And how do you get yourself back on track after a bitter moment?
A: I still struggle. I’m not so much bitter as I am disgusted. Probably more with myself than anyone. I feel very duped.
Q: During the 2012 Presidential election, you were pretty vocal regarding your beliefs and opinions. You have a bigger platform now that you have two successful books and more photography work than ever. Do you plan to be as outspoken in 2016?
A: Always. This country needs to continue to move forward. As long as we have a party that lives and functions in a repressed past we have to make certain they never have a voice in lawmaking again. If they can’t move forward they need to get off the train.
Q: What is the largest group of models you have had in one shoot?
A: Eight. Will never do it again. Too ADHD to put up with the scramble.
A: Why Cerberus as a company name? (This is the mythical three-headed hellhound who guards the entrance to the underworld)
A: It was one of the first sketches I ever made as a child that was pretty decent. The other was Dean Martin. So Cerberus it was.
Q: If you could write a letter to your 18 year old self, what would you say?
A: Don’t get married twice. And check out the guy next to you in history class in 11th grade!
Q: Where can readers find you on the internet?
For photographer J.J. Johnstone, the price of Dick just might cost him everything.
Excerpt NSFW: So there I was, quickly regressing to puberty, sitting in a sauna with the object of my lust. Looking at his thick muscular legs, broad shoulders and other weight-developed bulges properly bulging and glistening with a sheen of hot sweat, I wanted to eat him alive. We soon exited the sauna together.
Unburdening myself of common sense was an easy task standing in the shower with him. Every inch of his make-me-growl masculinity, covered in blond fur, ass like two ripe honeydews just daring me not to look when he turned his back. I caught a quick glimpse of that gloriously long, circumcised, purple-capped cock and balls hanging between his legs under an unpruned patch of dark pubes. I remember thinking I hadn’t ever bought that much meat in a delicatessen but I still bet I could eat it all in one sitting. It took every bit of restraint I possessed to not pop wood in that shower. The mating dance was an endurance test. Think tearing down the Washington Monument using only your mind.
He invited me out for a drink this time, and we drove to Houlihan’s again. It was a Friday and the line out the door consisted of families with brats and people with an hour to waste after work. I suggested we get a six-pack and go to my apartment, which luckily, was only three blocks away, with a liquor store right on the way.
I’m sure it wasn’t in his mind, but it was in mine that this was a hookup. And I’d like to think he wasn’t completely naive about my intentions. I was in testosterone hyper-drive. I got him to my apartment and we drank and talked like good ole buds. He was comfortable telling me about his recent college life, the break up with the girl of his dreams who left him for another man because she had cheated on him and was pregnant. His heartbreak. All the things I couldn’t have cared less about—good riddance to anything that would have been competition anyway. Dick got into his high school days of playing football and wrestling, and I sat there picturing that mass of muscled man-ass crammed into a singlet, me trying to pin him on a mat with my head pressed deep into a musk-reeking ass crack.
He was a frat boy. I should have guessed. They all had a certain look to them. And his frat brothers were his best friends in the world and meant everything to him. He missed their daily camaraderie. I wondered if he’d jacked off with any of them. Used the fraternity paddle in an un-fraternity-like manner. You’ve seen the porn. Don’t tell me your mind didn’t go there.
It was a disappointingly platonic get-together, like any dull straight boys could have had, but I learned a lot about him. How many couples fuck on a first date anyway, right? I consoled myself with that lame excuse. Shame on me—I should have paid close attention to the story he shared with me that night. While in his freshman year of college, his parents tried to surprise him with a friendly unannounced visit. Lo and behold, in his dorm room a snooping mother had found a used condom in his wastebasket. She collapsed into pious, Catholic tears and left before he got back to his room. A few days later she sent him a two page, single-spaced, typewritten letter preaching to him about the Catholic stand on premarital sex, and especially condemning the use of that horrendous tool of the devil, the seed-killing prophylactic. Don’t worry. Those facetious words weren’t hers. I paraphrased. This boy was more browbeaten by mommy than Norman Bates.
Didn’t matter to me that he was a mommy’s boy. He could have been wearing prison orange and had the tattooed tear of a brazen killer on his cheek and it wouldn’t have stopped me wanting him. That he was double-fisted clutching onto his “I’m so straight” persona with his stories, I found cute because I was reading something different in body language and eye contact. He was in my company for a reason. I thought he was just a bit backward about the how-tos of getting naked with another dude. I’d get him there…eventually. I felt it in my bones. One in particular.
So our little beer-drinking, life-sharing, guy get-together ended with him thanking me for a nice evening and shaking my hand at the door.
In my head I fucked that butt so hard I made myself cry.
Dan Skinner Bio: I’d already been in the photography business for too many years to count, shooting covers for hetero romance covers when I had my epiphany (ten years ago now) to shoot gay book covers and make them as acceptable and mainstream as the hetero ones. It was a big risk and I was told by many people, especially people who advised me financially, that it might not be a profitable thing to do, and could quite possibly ruin my reputation. But I was tired of seeing the proliferation of covers featuring a man and woman, the cologne and perfume ads featuring a man and a woman… every ad under the sun – only featuring a man and a woman, and knowing that only one side of life was being spoon fed to us by the media as the acceptable aspiration and ideal. In fact, it made me angry and crazy, and determined to do something about it. We were here… didn’t anyone see us?!!
I had several things working against me. The m/m fiction genre was just beginning to come into its own, but television and the entertainment industry were slowly allowing us into their vision as folks who existed right alongside them, and I knew the flux and flow of gay literature was going to eventually change. Will and Grace helped that. Brokeback Mountain helped that. So I had hope and crossed my fingers that I made a good choice as well as a conscientious one.
Along with that, I had to find guys daring enough to pose with each other in photos mimicking the same love and adoration as was seen in every Harlequin cover since time immemorial… They had to embrace and kiss and portray romance… between two people of the same gender. So finding the guys was going to be a chore… and finding guys in the Bible belt of the country, the Midwest, was going to be even tougher. But I did it.
Revenge is mine… the dbag’s bed has been christened by the models during a shoot!!
THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED