#BlogTour — Dirk Tales "The Book" That Darn Muse by Dan Skinner + Giveaway

Dirk Tales, The Book

includes previously released Misadventures of Doc & Dirk volumes, available now for the first time in paperback, an additional episode, 

He's a middle-aged, newly single, gay photographer starting life over. Along comes a freshly out nineteen-year-old, irreverent free spirit who wants to be his apprentice. Mismatched by more than a generation, what could possibly go wrong? Everything! And it's AWESOME!

Dirk's First Time: Every gay boy has his first experience. Usually it's a memorable, exciting personal time of discovery and intimacy between two young people. But two comic book characters? Is it horseplay or Cosplay?

The Boy At The Gym: First impressions can be deceiving. Sometimes that boy in the baggy clothes, talking to himself in the gym isn't as shy as he appears. Sometimes there's a deviant imp lurking beneath that freckled mask of innocence. Beware the Trojan Nerd!

A "Muse" ing: Most authors struggle with the voices or "muses" in their head when writing. Tuning that voice out becomes a little more challenging when your muse is a real-life nineteen-year-old who inhales espresso and turns out ideas at light speed. Danger Will Robinson!

Daddy and The Rent Boy: In sales, advertising is half the battle. That can become hazardous when you're in the company of an irreverent walking billboard.

Sex Dolls and Bad Dates: We’ve all had one of those dates where we think we've bitten off more than we can chew. The trick to know is Bite or Flight?

Dirk's Quirks: Everyone has idiosyncrasies; that's what makes us interesting. If you're lucky, you get a heaping helping and can share them with everyone.

Make it Naked: Teaching a nineteen-year-old walking hormone photography apprentice to shoot nudes is more than an adventure... It's a human obstacle course.








When I was in my twenties, I had an older friend, a psychiatrist in her sixties, who was a dear confidant and advisor to me. I admired her calmness. Anyone who is ADHD admires someone who, in the face of all things dreadful, can remain resolute. I was not such a person. Every crisis that hit me felt like the end of the world or too big to handle. When I felt besieged, I’d call her, and her steady voice was always reassuring. She never failed to bring me back to the reality that change was inevitable. And the reason I think about her now, even though she has long been gone, is that she said something that still resonates with me all these years later: “Crisis reveals our other self.” It’s a profound statement that I’ve learned to understand the longer I live and the more things I go through that seem insurmountable, which become another lesson in endurance.

We all have things that make us feel unsteady and we long for what we think are its opposite, luxuries like quiet, tranquil lives. We settle for things, even unhappy things, if we feel they don’t disrupt our routines too much. I know I did. I was living a life that was completely unlike myself, growing complacent with things that were not in my nature simply because the evenness of that existence didn’t roil the waters. I wasn’t happy. But I also wasn’t feeling I was in a crisis. Until, of course, a crisis hit me.

The problem with that complacency in the meantime is that it made me lazy, uninspired, and detached from the person that I really was. I looked in the mirror and no longer recognized myself, but simply figured it was time taking its toll as it did on all of us as we crept closer to middle age. I wanted to change but didn’t have the energy to. I wanted things to be better or different or more exciting but believed that maturity extracted those possibilities from life. I had underestimated the power of Crisis and its ability to reveal my other self.

After the crisis, my life altered completely. I was alone in the world again. I was starting over. And I realized that if I was going to start over, I wanted to do it from the ground up. The man who had grown fat and lazy and uninspired began a workout regimen that slowly progressed over a couple of years from being winded after walking a few blocks to being able to run a marathon. I was working out harder in the gym than those half my age. And the man in the mirror slowly became another man. One that I thought I would never see again... healthy, strong. The wonderful thing about this transformation was that I wasn’t working on myself for anyone else. I was doing it for me. There was no vanity involved in it at all. The reasons were completely psychological. That I was looking better than I had in the last fifteen years was only a side effect.

Crisis had another benefit: it attacked my proclivity to procrastinate. All the books I’d had in me for years, all the plots I had laid out in notebooks of the things I was going to write, but never did were suddenly finding words and coming to fruition. I was turning out all the work I had told myself I would do... at some point in my life.

Hiding inside the shell of a human I’d become in my complacency was another creature. The one who had never really lived, had never had an adventure, never tried things that most children and teenagers did. I had missed a huge portion of my life because of circumstances beyond my control. I was minus a childhood. I was missing a history of fun. But deep inside myself, I didn’t think crisis could do anything about this... I didn’t have a magic genie that would take me zip gliding or rock-climbing or skateboarding... I didn’t have a guru to invite me into the inner sanctum of the youth I’d missed.

Or so I thought.

The one thing my dear psychiatrist friend didn’t tell me was that Crisis also could throw the most unlikely people together. And when that happens... a whole new life begins. And that, my friends, is when the real adventure begins for all of us.

Mine came in the form of an irreverent teenage muse named Dirk. And the fun seems to have only just begun.

So when you worry about what a crisis may do to your life, look no further than me. Crisis can actually teach you how to live.





I’m a single gay man living in the Midwest. I write because I consider myself to be an old-fashioned storyteller. I’ve been a photographer for half my life, specializing in male romance cover art. My dream is to one day live on the beach with my dog and continue to tell tales that inspire and entertain.


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