After twenty years a gay man returns home to confront the minister and the ex-lover who destroyed his life. During his return he uncovers many secrets, including one that will change him forever.
As teens, Otis and Terrell were lovers. But their relationship was torn apart by Terrell's father and his pastor causing the two young men to travel disparate roads in their lives.
Now, as they near their fortieth birthdays, each seeks to confront the pains and truths that have shaped his journey: Otis returns home, having endured years of hardship in search of the peace that has eluded him for so long. During his stay he finds he must confront his father who had turned his back on him; the lover who denied him and the minister who brought about his downfall, and most of all a surprise that awaits him.
Then there is Terrell who finds that in spite of the 'perfect' life he chose to live, his marriage to Karen and his dedication to his two kids, there can be no peace without reconciling the differences that determines his sexual identity.
'This Place of Men' begins a journey over the course of three books covering twenty years in the lives of Otis and Terrell. The complete 'This Place of Men Trilogy' explores the lives of not only these two men, but others who struggle with truth and sexual identity.
'This Place of Men' is the first book of the This Place of Men Series.
Doug Cooper-Spencer is a novelist, essayist and short fiction writer living in Cincinnati. He is the author of three novels: 'This Place of Men', 'People Like Us' and 'Leaving Gomorrah', (books I, II and III of the ‘This Place of Men Series’) as well as numerous essays and short stories
His writings have appeared in anthologies - the latest being, 'Mighty Real: An Anthology of Same Gender Loving Writing', and includes both essays and a short story by Doug (''The Wounded Gardner') - as well reference books ('Carry the Word'), magazines and online sites including his blog: The View From Here and at his Face Book page.
In 2006 Doug was nominated by Clik Magazine as one of the ‘Elite 25’ black gay writers.
In 1989 Doug served tenure as Director of Liaison for The Cincinnati Chapter of Brother To Brother, an advocacy group for the prevention of HIV and for the promotion of human dignity for African American LGBT peoples in the Cincinnati area. Doug’s thirty-two years as an advocate for gay rights (ironically, which began while serving in the military, and which led to his dismissal) has given him a treasure of history that he often uses in his lectures and commentaries on the subject.
Doug has also served as in-house lecturer at the Cincinnati branch of The National Urban League’s Leadership Training Forum, and The University of Cincinnati. Along with his life-partner of thirteen years, Gregory, Doug is also co-producer of The Eyes Open Festival and President of The Eyes Open Festival Organization, a non-profit organization that uses the arts in the black LGBT community to educate and inspire all communities to wellness. He also appears in the award winning 1996 documentary, “All God’s Children”, a film that looks at the role of black gays and the black church.
Currently, Doug is at work on a screenplay, a collection of short fiction and essays, and a fourth novel.