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SEALING OUR FATE by Josh -- brand new coming of age novel

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I was very pleasantly surprised when I checked the site and found an all-new story by Josh ... "Sealing Our Fate." And so far, having already devoured the first two chapters, it's looking to be just as great of a ride as "Sea Change" and "The Least of These."

Can't wait to read more! :D

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'I remember my first gay thought. It came to me during a sleepover when I was twelve years old, and I woke in the middle of the night draped over Benjamin?s backside.'

If you're starved, as I am, for more of Josh's sexy scenarios, unforgettable characters and the flavor of teenage Texas, try Sealing Our Fate, his new coming of age novel, set again in Josh's native southern Texas. Fall in love with Ben and Kipper right along with Aaron, SOF's charming and self-conscious narrator. Is it ever easy for a young boy to discover how much he wants, and maybe even loves, his best friends? And what if he doesn't want to be gay?

From Sealing Our Fate by Josh:

'I?d been dreaming about Linda Parks and that we were snuggling naked. But I woke up and? it was Ben!

I didn?t realize it right away, though. I woke with my heart racing and with my chest and belly pressed to the warm, soft skin of his back. I woke to the smell of his curly brown hair and the feel of my hard cock, resting against his firm butt, ? I?d never pressed my hard cock against someone before, even through briefs.

I almost pulled him closer. I almost ground my cock against his butt before I was fully awake. But then I was awake, and I quickly rolled away.

As I lay there in the darkened room, my breathing ragged, I hoped that Ben hadn?t been awake. I strained to listen. His breathing remained regular, and I slowly started to relax. I reached into my briefs to close my hand around a rock hard and demanding cock. I?d only been masturbating a few weeks; maybe that?s what had me horny that night. And I was horny. My cock had never felt so hard.'


Two boys, a fishing shack on the bay, and a summer to change their lives. READ Josh's Sealing Our Fate here at Awesome Dude! Chapter One and Two online now!




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I've read the first two chapters. There's a lot that's spicy, and a lot that's sweet too. It's familiar in a "what-could-have-been" sort of way, and now and then, in a "yeah,-I-know-what-that's-like" way.

Hmm, the only time anyone called me by my full name was if I was in big trouble! -- It feels funny to see my name in a story now and then. I kinda like it.

Um, and if a friend had ever, well... :oops: ...I would've liked it if a friend or two of mine back then had been more than we were. They were very good guys.

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Hi guys. I'm glad that you all seem to like the story so far. I've had fun with it... no, make that, I'm having fun with it. I keep tweaking chapters. Actually, I pretty much rewrote chapters 3 and 4 after first running them past Dude and TR, especially after my editor/best friend/jiber-in-chief, Michael, basically said that he told me so. :D

I was a little worried with so much of the first two chapters being narrative. Normally, I like to include more dialog/action. And that is coming. I hope you guys hang in there with me.


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Chapter 3 did not disappoint at all in terms of eroticism. All the tension that had been building up in the protagonist's mind during the first two chapters was excellent, like having to take the mother of all leaks, and then finally got the relief it needed in this chapter.

Now, with that out of the way, I'm anxious to see how their relationship progresses, and what difficulties they are bound to run in to.

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Very steamy chapter. Sweet in its own way too, in how they go through everything and find each other and know they're still friends.

That was sudden, all the way from unrequited longing to...yowza. -- But where does that leave the fumbling exploration and the not-quite-ready-for-that stages of the teen years? And what about how that affects their friendship? Did they suddenly go from best friends and very close to a magnetic, sparks-flying, obviously sexually charged couple, so much so that it will be paramount, eclipsing, or freak out their parents and friends?

Or hey, hopefully it's actually somewhere bouncing in between those two extremes, and there will still be that exploration of what it all means to them.

'Fraid I don't know if that's how it works when guys find their best friend is really their boyfriend or their partner. Hmm, and about that sexual side of things, I wouldn't feel comfortable asking, except someone who's had the years to think about what that really meant, then or now, to them.

Highly personal (too personal?) reaction -- In fact, this is probably more personal than it should be, for a post, but I'm going to keep it in, in case it might be helpful for the authors and readers.

That would've been way more than I would've expected, and probably more than I would've been ready for, all at once, at that age. Would I have been thrilled if things had turned out that way? Probably, but maybe not quite so quickly.

I'm going to say that chapter is idealized, romanticized fiction. It was a romp, it was hot and all, and yes, I'd have to admit I found it appealing. (I think I'm a little jealous.) -- But, hmm, am I so out of the loop or so quiet in personality that I have to ask if that was at all likely to happen?

I suppose the truth is, I'd like that in a partner, but I also want the quiet, everyday side of the relationship to be just as evident. My internal compass is having difficulty figuring out if that was "an over-emphasis on sex" or if that was "whoa, yeah, I need that in my bedroom."

Josh, I'm fussing, and this isn't to diss the story. This is me wondering where I fit the romance and the sex in my life as a gay man, and how that fits a healthy partner relationship, like straight couples I know, or like the gay partners I'm friends with online or off.

Hah, I guess ultimately, it's just me overanalyzing myself as usual, instead of just letting me be me.

Looks like this question about navigating a relationship with a partner might be something I need to ask some friends about, offline and in person, to get some grounding.

Yes, I think I can actually start that discussion in reasonable terms. No, not as in, "Hey guys, so, how do you balance the bedroom gymnastics and the day to day romance and friendship in your relationship?" Well, I might put it close to that way with really close friends, if I can figure out how to start the conversation.

...Oh, never mind me fussing, it's given me food for thought, and that's good.

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I knew I would be stretching credulity with this one (though not necessarily where you found it incredulous :cat: ) but I wrote it for fun.

I thought about more angst. I thought about pacing. I really don't think I'm that far off on some things. There were two areas in this story that I was concerned about. The first is romance at the age of the protagonists. It's uncommon, but not out of the question. I've received letters from readers who formed life bonds at that age.

My second concern was with guilt and doubt. At that age, a lot of guys come under tremendous guilt, even for masturbation.

The story will deal with some other, more real-life issues. But those two, I decided to invoke author's perogative on.

I'm delighted you are taking the story seriously. I seriously wrote it for your enjoyment. And I hope you hang in there with me and forgive some of the more fantastic points.


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Fiction is fantasy ... so I don't mind a few "fantastic" points here and there. As an author myself, I know the importance of "creative license" or "author's prerogative" all too well.

Anyway, keep up the great work, Josh! I'm waiting with baited breath for the next chapter ... it's one of the few pleasures I have in my last days here on Ihla Formosa! :D

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My editor, Michael, reminded me to keep in mind that my background might be a little different from many readers. For example, when I was thirteen and had already done some rubbing with friends, a buddy from the swim team and I tried all three of the biggies in one morning -- frot, oral, and anal. Of course we called them rubbing, blow jobs and cornholing. (And we actually did try "blowing" that first time and wondered what guys saw in it.)

Of course neither of us came that morning which was probably good since we didn't have any resulting, post-coital regrets and were back at it the next day.

On a different note, another author friend told me he figures that guys that age are hard wired for falling in love, which is very much like a line or two I have in the next chapter. So though some readers might think I stretched it a bit with the enthusiastic experimentation and the romance in chapter 3, from my own experience as well as that of others I've known, I don't think so.

But none of it is really important if people can simply enjoy the story.

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I'm waiting with baited breath for the next chapter ...

You must eat a lot of raw fish there in Taiwan, Little Buddha!

The story is excellent and is very well edited. I hope everybody takes a look at it although, admittedly, it is not G-rated. But then again, neither are most our lives.

And if your life has been G-rated then this story is a way to have a 'more interesting'one .


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As I'm sure everyone is aware, I totally LOVE all of Josh's stories, and thoroughly enjoyed the first three of "Sealing Our Fate."

However, I must admit that I was a little disappointed at Chapter 4 ... it was basically just more of the same of Chapter 3, and I don't feel any kind of "tension" pulling the story forward. No potential drama or conflicts looming on the horizon yet ... it's just two horny teenagers having a love-fest out at their cabin.

The first two chapters were great when it came to expressing the inner turmoil and angst of the protagonist, Chapter 3 opened up the dam and let him fulfill his fantasies, but now I feel it's time to move on from that, and I hope we see that in Chapter 5.

But I'll definitely keep reading ... Josh has never disappointed me before! :D

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However, I must admit that I was a little disappointed at Chapter 4 ... it was basically just more of the same of Chapter 3, and I don't feel any kind of "tension" pulling the story forward. No potential drama or conflicts looming on the horizon yet ... it's just two horny teenagers having a love-fest out at their cabin.

This is a key problem for many stories, particularly in this little genre. The question every writer has to ask himself is, "what is this story really about?" Otherwise, it becomes just a series of little day-to-day episodes, without an overwhelming purpose that pushes it forward and makes it compelling. If sex is the main thing that keeps it going, the problem there is you have to keep topping yourself (no pun intended), and you quickly run out of options.

I once read a book on writing that advised would-be authors, "come up with a one-sentence theme that encapsulates what the story is about." In other words, cut the story down to the bare minimum and tell us the theme you're trying to tell. It might be something as simple as "honesty is the best policy" (which I ultimately realized was the theme of one of my novels), or "true love is worth all the risks" (the theme of my first novel).

Figure that out, and I think it will point the direction on where to take the story in future chapters.

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Uh, oh. Respectful disagreement rears its head. <grin>.

To me, Chapters 3 and 4 work exceedingly well. Partly, maybe, because of how I view the concept of 'conflict' - (Blue very kindly moved that post to a separate thread, and I'm very interested in how that develops) - but maybe I should have added the idea of 'Pacing', too.

I originally made an analogy to 'Huckleberry Finn'. A lot of it, most of it, is an idyllic, sunlit, dreamy drift down a broad, slow river - (with, I still swear, some wonderfully homoerotic themes). Right up until the riverboat comes out of nowhere and runs the raft down on a warm, still night.

To me, Real Life is like that. That charging riverboat might come around the bend two, three, or six chapters from now. Or maybe, when it comes, it misses the raft. Or maybe, we only ever just see the smoke, off in the distance . . . but we're changed by the experience.

I guess my view is, in RL, conflict doesn't punch a timeclock. The randomness (of life) is scary. Especially when we have hostages to fate.

Anyway. Sorry to ramble. Looking forward to the rest, Josh . . .

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Hmm, conflict, pacing...yep, you're fitting in fine already. :)

First off, I think Josh is setting things up this way for a reason, so I'm cutting him some slack. That's because I've read him before. Otherwise, yes, I'd be worried about the conflict and pacing. (Yes, I still am, a bit.)

Chapters 1 and 2 set up one set of conflicts, while Chapters 3 and 4 solve that set of conflicts right away, and no new conflicts are immediately apparent.

The pacing issue is the same: 1 and 2 set up one condition, 3 and 4 resolve it. Both conflict and pacing go from one extreme of the pendulum arc to another. Maybe they'll wind up in the middle by the end. (Yes, I got carried away with my own metaphor.)

What some are seeing as a too-early resolution, I'd say sets the stage for further conflicts and new pacing. Likely outcomes: Their relationship has suddenly changed. Now they have to figure out how to deal with that, with each other and around others, and it's going to show, sooner or later, from inexperience and from its intensity.

What frustrates me about this is that it means the boys have already tried pretty much everything, in the physical aspect of the relationship. That means it will be a challenge to keep that fresh. I'll grant that, for partners like these two seem to be, it might not get old for them, and hey, I'd hope it wouldn't. But personally, that isn't the main drive of a relationship. It's an important and exciting part, yes, but it isn't the main thing. -- Hmm, and that just might be the message Josh wants to get across, if he's being sneaky in the way he's presenting it. :cat:

Based on what we know of Stick and Kip, I'd say they are the types who do want that main thing, but right now, they've just figured out what all the buttons and knobs do, :cat: and they're really excited to try those out, naturally. Teen hormones, oh my. -- I'm hoping that Stick and Kip will settle down and figure out the real issues. (Besides, hey, guys, aren't you sore, and don't you need to recharge?)


At that age, I would've been seriously happy and thoroughly confused if either of the friends I had a crush on and I had gone from friend to boyfriend. You can probably guess which one of those physical options I wouldn't have even considered.

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Wow, I've got to get back here more often. You guys have been busy!

First, an apology guys... I'm just not as into angst as I should be. I have some more, main-stream story ideas where I plan to angst it up with the best of them. But especially for this story, I simply wanted something that would be primarily fun, but plausible.

And I know... I may avoid some clich?s like the bully jock fairly well, but this story is close enough in theme to The Least of These and Sea Change in some respects to almost be called formulaic. And I admit, I do have some favorite points to make.

But honestly, after finishing the Sea Change rewrite, I only wanted some, simple story to enjoy writing. Consider it my summer vacation.

Now for the future... if I do any more homo-erotic writing any time soon, I have in mind a couple of more exotic and perhaps even mysterious themes. But first, I really, really need to make a stab at that Great American Novel I intend to write.

As for SOF. There is a major change in pace coming in chapter 6. And there is even a little angst at the end of 5. But what I really hope for this story is an entertaining development of the two protagonists and their relationship? and perhaps a warm and gratified feeling for the reader at the end (chapter 11).

Oh, and one final apology. When I first wrote to Dude, to tell him about the story, and in correspondence afterward, I specified that it was a simple, and I hoped sweet, coming of age story. My apology is that I didn?t make that clear in the intro to the story. I?m sorry. I just hoped you?re hooked enough anyway to hang in there with me.


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Ah, angst. Maybe I gave the impression that I want/expect a lot of angst. Nope. (The conflict thread gives my views on that.) Short version: If a story needs angst, sure, put it in. But too much will burn out the rest of the story, and some stories shouldn't have angst. Hey, a restful story or a good romp is good too.

I've fussed about Sealing Our Fate, but let me give it some praise, too.

Texas is its own unique place, whether it's the Gulf Coast, central, the hill country, east, west, the panhandle, etc. (To people who don't know, Texas is very different from place to place, in the kinds of countryside. The people vary, but there's something "Texan" about us. It's Southern and Western all at once, and something unique to itself besides.

It's very comfortable and welcome to see Texas, the coast, and boys from here shown as they are. :) Just, really good to see.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Well I am really enjoying the story. You're a great writer. I'd probably enjoy the story if you wrote about two gay cocroaches on the wall of a Mickey-D's.

I can't believe you misspelled 'cock'...



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  • 4 weeks later...

Since I won't be rusuming my weekly News & Views column until Labor Day... let me weigh in here and say how much I've enjoyed reading and hosting Sealing Our Fate.

Josh has found the right combination of romance, sensuality and sexuality and expresses it so well...

We look forward to reading (and hosting) more of his stuff in the future. Perhaps more of 'The Greatest of These' ???

Great job, Josh!

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Thanks for hosting me!

I enjoyed writing SOF more than I thought I would. I began it as a simple diversion and writing exercise, and like my other stories, it grew on me. Now I'm thinking of reworking it sometime; especially chapters 3 through 5 and probably chapter 11.

At the time, I had several users comment about the speed with witch the two boys entered into their sexual relationship in chapter 3. I wasn't real concerned because I knew where the story was going and felt that it would remain, overall, a sweet story. However, looking back on it now, I could pace it out a bit more. And as for chapter 11, I may have gone a bit over the top on the romantic feelings and deeper thoughts. Certainly, if the story were to go longer, I would soften up that chapter.

I'm still learning the craft, and would welcome any suggestions for this story, should I rework it. And yes, everyone's after me to get The Greatest of These going again.

Oh, and thank you to the readers who wrote to say they read the story. I appreciate it. And thanks to Dude for hosting.

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I really enjoyed this story. Of course, I was a wee bit disappointed that we didn't get to find out what happened after they returned to their 'regular lives,' but sometimes, short & sweet is perfect. I totally fell in love with Kipper ... what a sweetheart! :razz:

Kudos to Josh! :wink:


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