At the age of twelve, Mason Stokes thought he was a New York Jewish intellectual. Turns out he was just a gay southerner with a fondness for early-period Woody Allen. But since both options would have gotten him beaten up, he made other choices, devoting himself to quiet study, courtly manners, and non-threatening outfits.
This led naturally to an English major (the last refuge of scoundrels), where he found himself obsessed with Russian literature, an obsession he abandoned after failing, on repeated tries, to make it more than halfway through The Brothers Karamazov.
In college, his homosexuality was solidified by his experience playing drums in cover bands at frat parties, where he watched drunk boys whisper the chorus of “Feel Like Making Love” into their girlfriends’ ears during slow dances. From this he never fully recovered.
Despite his failure with Dostoevsky, novels were the only things that made any sense to him, so he enrolled in a graduate program, where this sense was slowly beaten out of him. He enjoyed this experience, and hoped to inflict it on others, which he was finally able to do when he became an English professor.
Along the way he dated scores of men, to whom he sincerely apologizes.
Mason teaches at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York. Saving Julian is his first novel.