Saturday, November 24, 2012

David Bahati, Author of Uganda's "Kill the Gays" Bill.

In addition to yesterday's post about the "Kill the Gays" bill in Uganda, there are excellent Youtube videos of MSNBC's Rachel Maddow's interview with David Bahati, the author of the bill. These are from last year when David Bahati came to the USA to try to find understanding among the Americans (as in, educating USA about the necessity of this bill). 

Part 1
David Bahati "doesn't hate the gays, he loves them", but he has to "protect the children" (by, apparently, having the gays killed or imprisoned for life). He also claims that people are coming into the schools with foreign money to try to entice the children into becoming gay:

Part 2
Listen to his consistent "reasoning" that they're doing this "to protect the children" (especially when he can't come up with a good answer for her excellent questions):

Part 3
He never provided that evidence he said he would (we half expected some made-up reports). He also claims that the Bible is clear on what happens to sinners. He, however, does not seem to realize that by killing people (sinners or not) makes him into a sinner. He doesn't realize either that by making a judgement call as severe as deciding upon whether a person should live or die, he's taking the role of God and thereby sinning heavily. Apparently David Bahati doesn't care if he makes it to Heaven or not (whether or not Heaven exists):

Again, we urge people to sign the petitions (found at the bottom of this post). Please try to prevent this genocide of LGBT people (and their friends, tenants, and anyone who are even suspected of being homosexual) in Uganda. Please help prevent this witch hunt. 

(Edited to change the videos to links, because the page load was too heavy).

Friday, November 23, 2012

Witch Hunt in Uganda: "Kill the Gays"

Free stock image by Jason Aaberg.

Many may already have heard this, but a horrible bill is being pushed through the Ugandan Parliament and is expected to go into effect this December. They call it a Christmas gift to the Ugandan nation. The bill's been referred to as "Kill the Gays". This is not only terrible, horrible news for the LGBT community, but also disastrous to humanity and human rights. 

The quote below is from a news article in

The law will redefine the criminalization of same-sex relationships by dividing homosexuality into two categories (aggravated homosexuality and the offense of homosexuality), and assigning new, outrageous penalties to these "crimes."

"Aggravated homosexuality" is defined as gay acts committed by parents or authority figures, HIV-positive people, pedophiles and repeat offenders. If convicted, they will face the death penalty.

"Offense of homosexuality’" includes same-sex sexual acts or being in a gay relationship, and will be prosecuted by life imprisonment.

Several European countries have threatened to cut aid to Uganda if it passes. Still, somehow the Speaker considers the passage of this Bill a "Christmas gift" to the population.

A further listing of offences can be found on

Death penalty:

- to repeat offenders of homosexuals acts
- to people who engage in homosexual acts with a minor
- to people who are suspected of "aggravated homosexuality" and have HIV

Prison sentence:

- to those suspected of homosexual activity
- to those who do not report homosexual activity within 24 hours
- to those suspected of "promoting" homosexuality
- to anyone who aids and/or abets a homosexual (e.g. renting to a homosexual)

In addition:

- all people suspected of homosexual activity and arrested must undergo HIV testing.
- former residents suspected of homosexuality may be extradited and sentenced.

That's a witch hunt!

Here are more news articles on this matter:

So, what can you do? You can spread the world, spread petition links, and not let this go quiet. We may not be able to change everyone's mind in Uganda, but we might be able to help pressure the president to veto the bill. 

Here are some signature links:

The U.S. has already threatened to end all financial aid to Uganda if the bill passes, but according to this article, it may take a while. To help push it forward, please sign this petition to the White House. is (when this was written) aiming for 250.000 signatures. Roughly a 100.000 to go.

If you know of more links, please post a link and we'll add them here.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

After-Hop Post 2 of 2

Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia 2013

We've learned a lot from this year and we've gone back and forth on ideas for the next year. What we've decided is to change the name from Hop Against Homophobia to Hop Against Homophobia and Transphobia in honor of IDAHO. Also, did anyone else wake up on Sunday with half the blogs yet to read? Well we did. Originally we decided on four days, but that was before we knew that 275 blogs were going to sign up. So for next year, we're going to increase the length of the hop. We don't have the exact number of days yet, but we're thinking maybe ten or so. It all depends on which of the below option will be chosen. The start date will be on May 17th 2013, so mark your calendars :)

There is one other thing we've been going back and forth on. We want to spread awareness of homophobia and transphobia - this includes awareness of issues facing gays, lesbians, bisexuals, asexuals, pansexuals and the whole QUILTBAG. That was what was done this year. We had experiences from gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and trans* - all of whom were M/M writers/publishers/reviewers. The question is: Should we restrict this hop to the M/M writing community or should we include the whole GLBTQ writing community? There are pros and cons to both.

A lot of you may be thinking that we should open this for everyone, the M/F writing community too, but we feel like we have to limit this somewhere or it will become difficult to manage. Our method of drawing visitors in and get them involved is to offer up prizes. It worked well this time around, and although many would have visited without the prizes, we doubt they would have bothered to visit so many sites in so few days without them. We feel that we have to limit the hop to a group, because if the hop will link thousands of blogs people might find it daunting to visit every blog. Supervision would be tricky - it was tricky enough with 275 blogs (making sure the links worked, checking to see if someone didn't post, hunting down emails that had been typed incorrectly, responding to everyone who needed help, our latest endeavour to link directly to the messages and pull out quotes, etc.). 

Anyway, these are the two options we've narrowed down and we'd love to get your input on this:

1. Open the hop for the whole GLBTQ writing community. The hop will get a wider exposure and this is the group we're fighting for, so it makes sense to have everybody under one hop. The "downside" is that the hop will be huge, probably with twice as many blogs signing up. Again, we fear that the visitors will find a big number daunting and will be less inclined to take part. 

2. Limit it to the M/M writing community and see if there are any F/F and Trans* writers who would be interested in hosting the same event on separate hop-blog sites. The hops will be smaller and more manageable, but the exposure of IDAHO will be just as good. We have founded a group called Writers Against Homophobia and Transphobia (WAHAT), and the separate hop blogs (the main hop sites) could work together under that group. We could join forces in advertising and promoting, and we could help each other to make every hop a success. There would be less links to monitor and the hops would run smoother. Each group could focus on reaching their target group with their messages. We're also toying with the idea to talk to YA writers, and horror writers, and sci-fi writers (etc.) to see if there's interest in creating YA Writers Against Homophobia and Transphobia (who would try to reach their target groups of YA readers), Horror Writers Against Homophobia and Transphobia (etc), to try to bring this out of the GLBTQ writing community. 

So what do you think? Do you know of F/F writers who might be interested in hosting this event for the F/F writing community? Or writers of Trans* fiction who might be interested in hosting a hop for the Trans* writing community? Or should we just keep it all under one hop?

We would LOVE to hear your opinions :)

After-Hop Post 1 of 2

We want to thank everyone who signed up and posted their messages about homophobia and transphobia. The posts were mind-blowing and we think it would be a shame for them to pop down the list as time goes by, so we're working on a separate page on this blog with a direct link to every message*. We're also pulling out quotations from some of the posts**.

During this hop, we (the organizers) experienced this wonderful feeling of closeness in our colleges for four days. It felt amazing. The M/M writing community really did band together and stood strong, and therefor we feel that both objectives were reached: to spread awareness of homophobic discrimination and to stand together as a community of M/M writers, reviewers, publishers (and readers!).

We also want to thank the visitors for stopping by. Not only did they show interest and get involved, but their points of view, opinions, and encouragement were extremely thought-provoking and often heartfelt.

Thanks everyone for a very successful hop. We hope to see every last one of you next year :)

- Hop Organizers

*If someone doesn't want their message on the page, please let us know and we'll remove it.
**Again, if someone doesn't want their quote up, please let us know.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Hop Against Homophobia 2012


Homophobic discrimination is a serious issue in every single country on this planet, no matter how big or small. Some countries are more advanced in GLBTQ rights, while in some countries the penalty for being a GLBTQ person is death. All over the world, GLBTQ people are shunned by society, beat up, tortured, raped, and stripped of human rights in various ways. What makes people believe that they have the right to strip someone of their human rights is beyond us.

The Hop Against Homophobia is an attempt by over 250 m/m authors, reviewers and publishers to stand together and create awareness of homophobia. Each participating blog will feature a message on homophobic discrimination in its various forms. The date, May 17th, was chosen in honor of the International Day Against Homophobia and we're hoping to get people more involved with this day by inviting them to our blogs, where the visitors have a chance to win prizes.  

To the side of this blog are links to various organizations and foundations that fights homophobic discrimination. We encourage you to visit these sites and see what they're all about. Also, if you have more links you'd like to see on that list, please do share :)

So please, stop by the blogs, read the messages and leave comments :) Please also stay tuned for our after-hop message next week.


Disclaimer: Every blog participant is responsible for his/her own giveaway. The Hop Against Homophobia organizers will not be held reponsible if someone doesn't choose a winner or if someone fails to deliver their prize.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

HAH Featured on Kool Queer Lit Today

Hi guys,

One more day! 

We just wanted to point out that Hop Against Homophobia is being featured on Kool Queer Lit today. Please stop by if you're interested in reading more about the hop.

Almost Time!

It's almost time! We wanted to mention a few things before we begin. There's a yahoo group for this event and everyone is welcome, as long as they're not looking to cause trouble. We also have a facebook page and a Twitter account.

We've received a lot of emails from the participating blogs and many are all set to go and people are excited.

Registration is still open and will remain so until the end of the hop. If your blog is eligible and you'd like to join, there's a small blue sign-up button below the purple names. 

We would very much appreciate any kind of exposure during this event, so please spread the word :)

Saturday, May 5, 2012

The Purpose of This Hop

It has been brought to our attention that the purpose of this hop was never actually stated in the hop info on this site. We assumed that the purpose was a given (due to the name): To bring awareness to homophobia. However, since the creation of this hop, the purpose has become twofold: To bring awareness to homophobia and to stand together as an m/m writer community to fight of discrimination against the m/m genre. We have spread this purpose in interviews, personal email recruitment and in other announcements, but it was never stated on this blog site. We hope to rectify that with this post.

The blogs taking part in this will discuss homophobia in their hop entry. Originally we thought that we wouldn't get many sign-ups, so we added this text "as little as mention it - your choice" in the info post, because we wanted good exposure to the blogs that would talk about homophobia. In our informational email message going out this week, we will emphasize this part of the hop, as it has always been the purpose: to talk about homophobia. A lot of the participants have already stated in messages to us that they know what they're going to write about, so we're confident that most will want to spread a message (and everyone will, in the following hops, as that little text won't be included in the future). Some of it will be about the real problem, some will be about people's own experiences, and some will be about how homophobia has been successfully fought.

That said, we were outraged when a chapter in the Romance Writers of America excluded m/m romances from one of their contests because it felt "icky" to the judges. It was a big part in us wanting to make this hop large-scale and make a loud splash. We're not members of RWA, so this did not affect us directly, but we were still outraged. What the chapter of RWA did was discriminate against our genre and the subject it centers around: men loving men. The RWA chapter was being homophobic. They ended up cancelling the contest after an uproar, but it was clear by their excuse that there's a lot of work to be done for people to accept m/m fiction as something just acceptable as other fiction. This is why we added the second purpose: to stand together as m/m an m/m writing community and bring about awareness of our books and their subjects. 

Is it morally wrong to use the International Day Against Homophobia in relation to this hop? We believe not. Being excluded for the sole reason that our work contains love between two men is wrong and homophobic, and we have a right to fight to make sure it doesn't happen again. This may seem trivial to some people, in comparison to other homophobic issues, but to us this is very important (and no, not for sales - if money was all we were after, we'd be writing mainstream YA).

Is it wrong to use prizes to get people to our blogs? We think not. We think it's a great way to get people to stop by in hope that they'll take interest in the issue and become more aware. We could have made a hop where there were no prizes involved - just us spreading a message - but we believe that this way, we will get more people over. A lot of people - including m/m readers - don't even know that there's such a thing as an International Day Against Homophobia. A lot of people - including m/m readers - don't even know that there's such a thing as an International Day Against Homophobia.

People may not agree with this method, but it is within their rights to disagree. People's opinions will always differ. A couple of days ago, we learned that there are people who have posted a message saying how terribly wrong this hop is - and by reading the post these people made, they were right. It did look terribly wrong. Had we not been involved in this hop ourselves, we would have been outraged. The informational post on "What is a Blog Hop" was badly written: it started off explaining in general what a book blog hop is, but then, as the post wore on, it started to get into the details of this specific hop. That has been rectified now, and only speaks of what a book blog hop is, in general. The biggest mistake, however, was that our purpose was not clearly stated in the informational post. We know that no matter what we say, we won't change the minds of most of these people. All we can do is be open, honest, and sincere in what our purpose has been all along. We can pull up links, dated back in February, to show that we've been spreading this purpose over the internet. Erica can send these links through emails, if people contact her personally.

We acknowledge these mistakes. The main purpose of this hop has never been to sell our books. People can chose to believe that or not - again, nothing we can say will change the minds of those who do think we're just here to sell our books - so all we can do is write this post and hope that most people will see that we're not doing something wrong here.

So again, in short: This hop is about spreading awareness of homophobia and to stand together as an m/m writer community against discrimination of what we write about.

Erica, K-Lee and NJ.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Hop Against Homophobia Registration!

An M/M-only blog hop!

Now that we've finally released some gay romances, we (Erica Pike, NJ Nielsen, and K-Lee Klein) have begun to take part in blog hops. They‘re great fun and we‘re very appreciative to be invited along for the ride. One thing we‘ve noticed though is the lack of M/M specific blog hops created for writers and readers of our particular genre. So we thought, why not make one?

K-Lee came up with the clever name: Hop Against Homophobia, and we've decided to use the International Day Against Homophobia, May 17th, as our official hop kickoff date. The hop will run until midnight May 20th.

We hope to get as many authors of gay (M/M) fiction as we can to sign up and show their support. Publishers, sellers and reviewers are welcome to take part as long as your prize is M/M-related.

Here are the author participation requirements:

--- Be an author/publisher/reviewer of M/M fiction.
--- Offer a M/M-related prize (M/M book/ebook, or GLBTQ swag, t-shirt, whatever you can come up with).
--- Provide links of other blog participants to your blog visitors (will be explained in an email, but it'll be as easy as copy-paste).
--- Talk about the International Day Against Homophobia in your May 17th blog entry (as little as just a mention – your choice).
--- Add the colorful Hop Against Homophobia image to your blog/website with a link to the official hop site:

We are discouraging the use of gift cards as prizes. In doing this, we hope to attract readers more specific to our M/M genre and not just readers looking to score a gift card. We want m/m fiction lovers to win our prizes!

We plan to do as much promotion on this as we can and we'd appreciate it if all participants could help by mentioning the hop once in a while. This is OUR (people of the gay fiction genre) hop, and if successful this year, it could turn into a fabulous annual event of M/M love!

What is a blog hop? Take a look at this post.

For authors/publishers/reviewers interested in taking part, specifics will be sent via email once we get closer to the date, so everyone will know what to do. But for now, please sign up and encourage others to do the same :)

Friday, February 3, 2012

What is a Blog Hop?

What is a blog hop? 
A book blog hop is an event that usually takes place over a few days and the purpose is to get readers to a) see your name b) see your books and c) have the option to follow your blog to get to know you as an author and to be kept up to date about your future work. 

Tip! The more often you take part in events like blog hops, the quicker the readers will learn your names.

What do I need to take part?
A blog :) We also suggest you have a tool on your blog, either the "follow" button on Blogger or some other similar thing (like Google Network). If you don't want such feature you could always leave a link to your author facebook page, twitter, a newsletter or some other way for the interested readers to follow you. It's up to you if you make following mandatory to take part, but it is our experience that people don't like jumping through hoops, especially after a long day of hopping. 
You will also need a prize! Not all blog hops insist upon a prize, but a prize a great incentive for people to visit your blog and a great way for you to get your work seen.

Tip! It's a good idea to blog about the hop a few days before it takes place. It'll generate interest and get people excited. We also hope that people will spread the word through facebook and other channels.

How does it work?
Every author taking part in the hop sets up a hop-post on the hop day as early as possible. Over the hop-days, people will drop by and leave comments. Just before midnight on the last the contests close and you may draw a winner (or you can leave it until the next day). Every blog owner chooses their own winners. We recommend making a separate post to announce the winner, because people don't like searching through the blog to find out who won.

Tip! Readers don't like it when the blog owners haven't set up their hop-post when they start blog-hopping (as in jumping between blogs). It's a good idea to have written the post the night before the hop day - if you're not an early riser - and set it to auto post early on the hop day. There's a feature in most blog programs that allows this.

What do the readers get out of it?
A prize! But not only that - they might be finding their next favorite author and a whole bunch of interesting books to add to their piles of to-be-read.

 Make sure your books/book links are either easily visible on your blog. It puts people off to have to search through the entire blog/website to find your books. Some won't only be looking at your giveaway-book/prize - they'll want to see what else you have out there.

What do I put in my hop-post?
Some hops have themes or events that they'll want their participants to discuss, but sometimes there are no themes (or an obligation to discuss the theme/event).*
State the rules of your giveaway. Some ask people to follow their blog, facebook page, twitter, newsletter   etc. (it's what we call "jumping through hoops", though we're in no way condemning it). Some have quizzes, or have the partakers answer a question, like "what are you reading?" or "how do you show your support to homosexuality". Some prefer a simple "leave a comment with your email address" - it's up to you :)
Say what you're offering as a prize and how the winner will be chosen. 
Finally, it's a good idea to mention the follow options in the blog hop post (whether or not you make follow mandatory).

Tip! Random drawings are best to choose a winner - but there are many ways to do them. There's a nifty tool at where you enter the numbers of contestants and it'll generate a random number for you (you'll have given everyone a number first or just count down the entries until you find the winner). Erica knows this one person who writes the names on pieces of paper, folds them and tosses them to her three cats. The first three her cats snag are the winners (Erica won a book that way once - thanks kitty!).

Who may sign up for the prizes?
Everyone (...over 18, if your prize is a steamy erotic novel). Other hop blog owners are normally also free to enter the contests of the other blogs.

There may be additional conditions to various hops, like some make it mandatory to stick the hop image to the hop entry, but these are the basic techniques. 

Have questions? Feel free to comment :)

* If you're taking part in the Hop Against Homophobia, the focus will be on the International Day Against Homophobia. It would be nice if everyone wrote a message on that. Something to show your support.