Jeff Mann

About the Author

Jeff Mann grew up in Covington, Virginia, and Hinton, West Virginia, receiving degrees in English and forestry from West Virginia University.  His poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in many publications, including Arts and Letters, Prairie Schooner, Shenandoah, Willow Springs, The Gay and Lesbian Review Worldwide, Crab Orchard Review, and Appalachian Heritage.  He has published three award-winning poetry chapbooks, Bliss, Mountain Fireflies, and Flint Shards from Sussex; four full-length books of poetry, Bones Washed with Wine, On the Tongue, Ash: Poems from Norse Mythology, and A Romantic Mann; two collections of personal essays, Edge: Travels of an Appalachian Leather Bear and Binding the God: Ursine Essays from the Mountain South; two novellas, Devoured, included in Masters of Midnight: Erotic Tales of the Vampire, and Camp Allegheny, included in History’s Passion: Stories of Sex Before Stonewall; two novels, Fog: A Novel of Desire and Reprisal, which won the Pauline Réage Novel Award, and Purgatory: A Novel of the Civil War, which won a Rainbow Award; a book of poetry and memoir, Loving Mountains, Loving Men; and two volumes of short fiction, Desire and Devour: Stories of Blood and Sweat and A History of Barbed Wire, which won a Lambda Literary Award.  In 2013, he was inducted into the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival Hall of Fame.  He teaches creative writing at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Awards and Honors

Saints and Sinners Literary Festival Hall of Fame, 2013.
Finalist, John Preston Short Fiction Award for “Christmas Comes to Otters’ Gap,” 2013.
Out in Print’s “Best of 2012” for Purgatory: A Novel of the Civil War, 2012.
Rainbow Award, First Place in the Gay Historical Category for Purgatory: A Novel of the Civil War, 2012.
Winner, Established Poets’ Contest, Metrorail Public Art Project, 2011.
Finalist, John Preston Short Fiction Award for “Lost River,” 2010.
John Preston Short Fiction Award for “Kidnapping Chris,” 2009.
Lambda Literary Award for A History of Barbed Wire, 2007.
"Though lovers be lost love shall not; And death shall have no dominion" Dylan Thomas

Books

Cub
Not every gay teen yearns for fashion and popular culture. Some boys are pure country folk and like the feel of flannel and the smell of the farm. And they’re neither lithe nor muscle-bound but stocky boys, the ones who develop hairy chests, arms, and faces years earlier than their peers. One such seventeen-year-old is Travis Ferrell, shy among most of the other kids at school, but proud of his West Virginia roots. He has not yet admitted his passion for handsome guys–and his idea of what handsome is and what handsome does is not much different from him. Soon he’ll learn that he’s not unique; gay culture has a name for young men like him. Cubs.Amazon
Ash: Poems from Norse Mythology
In Ash, acclaimed poet Jeff Mann has created a haunting and intense examination of Norse mythology, extending from the creation of the universe to its end in the flames of Ragnarok. Here are many voices: All-Father Odin, bound to the World Tree; Thor, the protector of mankind and battler of monsters; Balder, the gentle god treacherously slain; Sigurd, killer of a gold-hoarding dragon; Brynhild, love-sick and vengeful Valkyrie; and Surt, the demon who burns the earth and sky to ash. Here are many worlds: a seething snake-pit, a burning mead hall, an open tomb, Valhalla s vigorous feasting and lovemaking, fir forests and Nordic snows. These poems range from the speech of gods and heroes to autobiographical lyrics that use myth as an entry into eternal human concerns: love, hate, loss, death, and rebirth.
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Loving Mountains Loving Men
Loving Mountains, Loving Men is the first book-length treatment of a topic rarely discussed or examined before: gay life in Appalachia. Appalachians are known for their love of place, yet many gays and lesbians from the mountains flee to urban areas. Jeff Mann tells the story of one who left and then returned, who insists on claiming and celebrating both regional and erotic identities. In memoir and poetry, Mann describes his life as an openly gay man who has remained true to his mountain roots. Mann first describes his upbringing in Hinton, a small town in southern West Virginia, as well as his realization of his homosexuality, his early experiences of homophobia, his coterie of supportive lesbian friends, and his initial attempts to escape his native region in hopes of finding a freer life in urban gay communities. Mann depicts his difficult search for a romantic relationship, the family members who have given him the strength to defy convention, his anger against religious intolerance and the violence of homophobia, and his love for the rich folk culture of the Highland South. His character and values shaped by the mountains, Mann has reconciled his homosexuality with both traditional definitions of Appalachian manhood and his own attachment to home and kin. Loving Mountains, Loving Men is the compelling, universal story of making peace with oneself and the wider world. Barnes and Noble Amazon
Desire and Devour
Desire: The longing for the touch of men. The edge of hunger. The need for supplicants craving a sweaty embrace, a passionate tryst in the dark.Devour: To drink, to dispatch, to swallow. To quench one’s unimaginable thirst. To leave an empty vessel behind as one walks away into the night. More than a hundred and fifty years before Dracula ever touched English soil, Scottish Highlander Derek Maclaine became one of the undead to bring a terrible vengeance on those who had taken the man he loved. But revenge could not sate his appetites for sweat and blood through the years; an immortal learns to survive, to love again, as the lives of mortals are bright and brief flames that attract vampires like amorous moths. Award-winning author Jeff Mann has collected his erotic and powerful stories of Derek’s unlife, adventures that travel centuries and the globe. Loosen your collar, bare your throat, sigh in expectation, but do not forget to shiver as this burly and brawny stalker of men steps behind you, to brush his beard against your neck as his hands grasp you where you most need to be touched.Barnes and Noble Amazon
A History of Barbed Wire
In intense, lyrical language, Jeff Mann’s short stories give us an array of tormented characters: adulterous lovers, a kidnapper and his handsome victim, the sadistic ghost of a Confederate soldier, a yearning forestry student, an eager masochist, and a hairy biker. These tales explore the sex and psychology of BDSM and of bear culture, and most are set in Mann’s native Appalachia, an area often mythologized as a place where the wilderness within converges with the wilderness without. Winner of 2007 Lambda Literary Award Barnes and Noble Amazon
Binding the God
A much lauded essayist and poet, Jeff Mann writes of the passion and pain of being a Southern gentleman who happens to be invested in many worlds: the hungers of gay Bear culture; the propensities of leather and bondage; the frustrations of academia; and the perspectives of an Appalachian who has traveled the world. In Binding the God, his second collection of essays, Mann offers readers another tour of his consciousness and experiences. This volume includes essays previously published in Arts and Letters, Second Person Queer, Callaloo, Now and Then, White Crane, Queer and Catholic, and other journals and anthologies. Barnes and Noble Amazon
Edge: Travels of an Appalachian Leather Bear
The autobiographical essays in Edge offer insight into the passions of acclaimed author Jeff Mann. These memories, insightful as they are endearing, range from his boyhood obsession with the gothic allure of Dark Shadows, to the doubt and pain of being a Southerner, and so at the edge of the gay community, and the appeal of leather bars and bear culture. Mann also visits many gay meccas in these essays—the resorts of Key West, Provincetown, and Rehoboth Beach, along with several European destinations such as Germany, Ireland, Belgium, and Scotland, have important cameos. But he is never an idle traveler—he is challenged by his experiences, and his observations reveal the thoughts of many gay men. Along the way Mann ruminates on a variety of subjects, from lost lovers to wearing kilts, theophany, Sylvia Plath, adult videos, and bathhouses Barnes and Noble Amazon
Fog
Outside an isolated cabin, winter fog caresses spruce trees. Inside, two men, lovers, have enacted a plan of revenge, kidnapping the handsome son of the man who wronged one of them. Al, the accomplice, has stalked Rob for weeks, and his infatuation for the young man has grown deeper than he ever anticipated. So much so that he finds himself drawn to protect Rob from the rage and vengeance burning away his partner Jay’s insides. Caring for their bound and gagged captive,with each passing day Al finds his power over Rob a potent and irresistible aphrodisiac and his heart dangerously moved. But Jay has no intention of ever allowing the young man to escape. Winner of 2012 Pauline Reage Novel Award Barnes and Noble Amazon
A Romantic Mann
"A tough, sweaty scent of maleness mingles with the bittersweet sense of loss in Jeff Mann’s sexy new book, A Romantic Mann. His voice is tender, confident, intelligent, and engaging. His poems are the utterances of a man at the vantage point of what seems to be the middle age of a life lived gracefully, of one secure in his own skin. Whether recalling hairy chests, hairy thighs, hairy asses or evoking his childhood and his current life in Appalachia or attending to the state of the world, Mann is an urbane observer with a luscious language at his bidding. A tour de force, this is a book I dare anyone not to fall in love with." -Jim Elledge Barnes and Noble Amazon
Purgatory
During the Civil War, two young soldiers on opposite sides find themselves drawn together. One is a war-weary but scholarly Southerner who has seen too much bloodshed, especially the tortures inflicted upon the enemy by his vicious commanding officer, his uncle. The other is a Herculean Yankee captured by the rag-tag Confederate band and forced to become a martyr for all the sins of General Sheridan’s fires. When these two find themselves admiring more than one another’s spirit and demeanor, when passions erupt between captor and captive, will this new romance survive the arduous trek to Purgatory Mountain? Winner of Rainbow Award, First Place in the Gay Historical Category Barnes and Noble Amazon

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