This is the emotional reality of outliving the AIDS epidemic
IML 2017 Ralph Bruneau reflects on the impact of losing loved ones to HIV
By Ralph Brunueau, appearing in Gay Star News
"My recent FB post got picked up for publication today, National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Means the world to be able to tell this story on this day." "Walking the dog in Griffith Park. So beautiful. Love the day. Love my dog. Love my life. I see a bruise on my leg. An irregular shape, small, purple with a bit of black. How did that happen? I don’t remember hitting it on anything. Time stops. I’m in Manhattan. I’m walking into the hospital room to see my ex for the first time since he broke us off and I moved to Los Angeles. I walk in the room, shaking,, scared. I have been warned about what I will see..." Read all of what Ralph Bruneau has to say at
Scene from Southwest Leather Conference 2017. Photo by Dave Rhodes
Southwest Leather Conference - Take the Plunge
Southwest Leather Conference 2018 - Take the Plunge will highlight the annual Southwest Master/slave Contest and Southwest Bootblack Contest in gorgeous Phoenix, Arizona. Southwest Leather Conference also includes Dance of Souls hook pull ceremony, keynote brunch, play parties, a large number of classes and workshops, Leather Tribe Revival and other socials. http://www.southwestleather.org/content/registration NOLA Leather to Geaux 2018 March 16 - 18, 2018 hosted by NOLA Leather to Geaux March 16-18 at 6 PM at the Phoenix, 941 Elysian Fields Ave, New Orleans, LA 70117-8535.
(Columbus, OH) — National Leather Association - International (NLA-I), a leading organization for activists in the pansexual SM/Leather/Fetish community, announced today the finalists for its annual writing awards. Named after activists and writers Geoff Mains, John Preston, Pauline Reage, Cynthia Slater, and the groundbreaking organization Samois, they are awarded annually to recognize excellence in writing and publishing about Leather, SM, bondage and fetishes.
The finalists for the Cynthia Slater Non-fiction Article Award are:
Super Tight: A Fetish For Restraint by Claire Rudy Foster which appeared April 20, 2017 on TheRumpus.net
A Defense of Erotic by Jeff Mann which appeared as the introduction to his book Consent which was released April 28 , 2017 by Lethe Press
California Dreamin: West Coast Directors and the Golden Age of Forbidden Gay Movie by Jack Fritscher which was released in the U.S. in early 2017 after originally being published by Editions Mustache in the U.K. December 14, 2016
The finalists for the Geoff Mains Non-fiction Book Award are:
The Big Workbook For Submissives by Rebecca Blanton (Auntie Vice Productions)
Better Bondage For Every Body by Evie Vane (Wanton Press)
Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Magazine Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999 by Jack Fritscher (Palm Drive Publishing)
The finalists for the Pauline Reage Novel Award are:
The Master Will Appear by L.A. Witt (self published)
Insatiable by Jeff Mann (Lethe Press)
The finalists for the Samois Anthology Award are:
Unspeakably Erotic: Lesbian Kink by D.L. King (Cleis Press)
The finalists for the John Preston Short Story Award are:
Winter Fantasia Captive Club by Jeff Mann which appeared on Great Jones Street reading app
The Artist by Daniel Erickson (self-published)
Sand Trap by L.M. Somerton (Pride Publishing)
Falling Action by Kiki DeLovely from the anthology His Aura: A Collection of Transmasculine Erotica ed. Shaun J. Phree (Phreedom Publishing)
Pygmalion by J. Belle from the anthology Unspeakably Erotic: Lesbian Kink ed. D.L. King (Cleis Press)
The Brute and The Brat by Sinclair Sexsmith (Maverick Press)
The winners will be announced at the National Leather Association – International’s Annual General Meeting, which will be held October 21 in Reno, NV in conjunctions with NLA - Northern Nevada’s event, Revelry. Please keep an eye on our Facebook page for more information.
There are four confirmed contestants for International Mr. Bootblack this year. With the assistance of Jeremiah Morris we were able to present this to you. Jeremy is the Coordinators for the International Mr. Bootblack Competition. For more about International Mr. Bootblack including judges and rules check out http://www.imrl.com To see our coverage of the 72 men competing for International Mr. Leather go to https://www.theleatherjournal.com/news/regional-news/item/2019-iml-2018-contestants-photos-and-bios
All 63 International Mr. Leather 2017 contestants wave to the crowd. Soon after, the IML Top 20 Finalists were named. All photos by Dave Rhodes
International Mr. Leather 2017 is Ralph Bruneau who came in as Mr. GNI Leather 2016; his first runner-up is Mr. San Francisco Leather 2017 Geoff Millard, second runner-up is Mr. Leather Europe 2016 Joe King; International Mr. Bootblack 2017 is Ryan "Pawlish" Garner-Carpenter and first runner-up is Rhys.
Compiled by Dave Rhodes, Dr. Larry and William Burden
It is no secret that there were 71 International Mr. Leather 2018 or IML 40 contestants - your preference - 19 of them came from outside the United States, it is known that significant changes were being made in the International Mr. Bootblack contest and that IML founder Chuck Renslow would be remembered with class. What was to-be-determined was the winners of the contests.
Jaco: For those who don’t already know, please tell us about yourself and your connection with the Leather world.
Race: I’ve been active in the Leather scene since 1973. Initially, apart from being a bartender in a sleazy kinky bar, I was essentially a lone maverick player. Then around 1980 I got deeply involved with various clubs, organizations and projects that changed that lone wolf status. Since then I’ve been an organizer, writer, educator, speaker and activist in the LGBT, leather/kink, polyamory and HIV/STI prevention realms. I’ve authored a well-known BDSM book, been published extensively, spoken to hundreds of audiences, created the world's largest kink-friendly psychotherapist and medical referral service (Kink Aware Professionals), was a leader of The DSM Project that led to a beneficial change in the way psychotherapy views BDSM, founded a groundbreaking alternative sexuality publishing company (Daedalus Publishing Company), been an internet radio sex talk show host, received national and local awards, appeared in numerous documentaries, and currently am the Leather/kink columnist for the Bay Area Reporter http://www.ebar.comwww.ebar.com I also have a blog at http://www.bannon.com and there’s more information about me there for those who might be interested.
Concluding a multi-month search process, an experienced library director and administrator will lead the next chapter of the Leather Archives and Museum. Gary Wasdin received unanimous support of all nine board members present at the Sunday afternoon meeting. He will assume his new position on January 2.
My name is Gary Wasdin, and I am the new Executive Director of the Leather Archives & Museum. I am humbled to have been chosen to lead this organization and to continue the work that so many have contributed to over the past 26-plus years. While I am only in my third week, your passion and commitment to the LA&M and its work is evident. Thank you for your support.
Mufasa Ali is Great Lakes Leather Alliance keynote speaker
By Christina K. Court
Great Lakes Leather Alliance (GLLA) announced that Mufasa Ali will serve as the GLLA 2018 keynote speaker. Mufasa Ali, a member of the Leather community for over 20 years and the inaugural Mr. World Leather 2006/2007, is the founder of ONYX, an international club supporting Leathermen of Color and the recipient of the 2013, 2016 and 2017 Pantheon of Leather Large Club of the Year Award. He currently serves as the Chair of the ONYX National Council, and he is the founder and primary facilitator of the People of Color Leather Caucus seminars at IML and Black Beat, Inc. GLLA 2018 will occur September 6-9 in the same Indianapolis, Indiana host hotel as GLLA 2017. Event registration will open January 1.
By Mufasa Ali
Thank you to the LLC Board for trusting me with this auspicious occasion to share, to my husband in his absence, boi Optimus and the Mufasa’s Pride Family, to the National Council of ONYX and all my ONYX family, to my Leather Preservation History Weekend Board members, to all my Leather Community and to His Eminence T’Chala always in my soul ….Wakanda Forever!
Approximately 500 Leatherfolk attended the Southwest Leather Conference which celebrated its 15th Anniversary at the Four Points Sheraton in Phoenix, AZ the weekend of January 19-22 with the highlights being the Southwest Master slave Contest and the Dance of Souls. The weekend was high on spirituality, branded "the woo" by regulars.
South Plains Leatherfest and International Master/slave Weekend 2016 will be held at the Doubletree Dallas Near the Galleria, March 11-13 in Dallas, Texas.
South Plains will see great workshops, hot pansexual, men’s and women’s play parties, Sunday Brunch with this year’s keynote Ms Kendra, the South Plains Coffee House, a great vendor mart, the International Master/slave Contest, and the South Plains Living Room.
The theme of South Plains Leatherfest and International Master/slave Weekend is We Will Not Forget. During the weekend guests and staff will remember its history and traditions, celebrate the present, and look forward to the future.
The South Plains Traditional Sunday Brunch tickets are $30 and are available through on-line registration. The keynote speaker will be Ms Kendra who is the Executive Director of the Great Lakes Leather Alliance.
There will be over 40 workshops and classes with the following South Plains 2016 M/s presenters: Master Jim and slave marsha, Master Obsidian and slave namaste, Master Michael and slave angie, Master Kevin and slave feyrie, Master David Walker Master Dan and slave dawn, subHaven, Raven Kaldera and slaveboy joshua, slave Melissa, Master T’Hayla and Gillian, Ms Brenda, Ms Kendra, Master George and slave bren, Master Neko and koneko, Ranell, Aren and Ms WillowKat, Reggie, kasi and evie Alexander; South Plains 2016 SM/Leather Presenters: Sir Cougar, boy alex, Wayner Brawner, Hardy Haberman, Sarah Sloane, Mark Frazier, Sean Grey, Cecelia, Daddy Rose and Pup Rylee, Keith aka “Beast," MizLilly and Zap, boy dave, Andrew Love, Mason Alexander, Master Konraad, Tifany and Stephen.
The International Master/slave 2016 contest will be held on Saturday night.
Play Parties are set for Friday and Saturday nights from 9 PM to 2 AM. As always, the on-site play space will feature separate pansexual, women only, and men only spaces. Admission to the parties is sold as a package, rather than as individual party tickets. A play party admission package, which entitles one to attend both of South Plains’ play parties, is $30.
The Doubletree Dallas Near the Galleria is located at 4099 Valley View Lane, Dallas, TX 75244. Phone (972) 385-9000. Standard rooms are available at a special rate $99, which will secure a room for up to four people. Parking is free and in addition to hotel dining, there are plenty of restaurants nearby. To register or to book online to get the South Plains rate so just go to http://www.southplainsleatherfest.com
As many as 2,500 Leatherfolk attended CLAW 18 (Cleveland Leather Awareness Weekend) at the Westin Downtown Cleveland April 26-29. CLAW and its affiliated CLAW Nation events have rung up over $800,000 in donations to charity since its inception in 2001. With fundraising activities everywhere, everyone is having the time of their lives while giving.
Members of the IML Class of 2018 who appeared at Mid Atlantic Leather in January.
A record 71 men have officially registered by the early May deadline as contestants for IML 40 or International Mr. Leather 2018. IML contestant coordinator Jeff Tucker, an IML 1994 titleholder himself, greatly assisted in compiling this information. Contestants were given the opportunity to submit decent photos and brief bios. We have photos of all 71 and three-fourths of the supplied bios.Take a look and pick your favorites. One might pick their own Top 20 and compare it later to the list announced on stage at The Auditorium in Chicago, IL on Sunday night, May 27. This article originally had 72 contestants. One dropped out a few days before the contest due to a medical emergency. Find out more about IML at http://www.imrl.com