SpringPlay Magazine reviews The Great Meeting Room!

Thank you so much SpringPlay Magazine, Antoine Elhashem and Bryen Dunn for the awesome review and for including me with such amazing company! To read the full story (page 31) please pick up a copy of the magazine in select locations throughout Toronto or download… Continue Reading

Why Book Reviews Matter

I was at the New York Public Library (NYPL) the other day doing some work and on my way out I stopped in at the children desk to ask if there was anyone I could speak with about getting my… Continue Reading

Press From MyGayToronto.com, Bellini’s 8 1/2: “The design is striking and is sure to please the kids on your gift list.”

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My buddy Raymond Helkio has just published a lovely children’s book called The Great Meeting Room. The design is striking and is sure to please the kids on your gift list. Raymond, who is currently living in New York City, is one… Continue Reading

Apartment #3, Hair Of The Dog, Toronto

Apt #3 Hair Of The Dog, Toronto

This is the first time I’ve flown Porter and the views of the city from the terminal are stunning. I had no idea Toronto was so beautiful but this trip has reminded me that this place is not just beautiful it’s… Continue Reading

The Great Meeting Meeting Room visits the New York Public Library

Is it a library? An art gallery? A museum? Today me and my friend Frank went to the New York Public Library study hall which is perhaps one of the greatest meeting rooms in this city. I’m in love.

Penn Station, Washington DC + An Appreciation For The Privilege Of Travelling Coach

Library of Congress steps

What time should you get up to catch a 5:30AM train to Washington? Well if you anything like me you’ll just stay up all night worrying about sleeping then in the last hour worry about not sleeping. The alarm goes… Continue Reading

Fan Mail, Congress And The Illusion Of Meeting Rooms

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There was a time when opening my mail meant sorting through actual mail, you know like letters, cheques, cards, donation requests and some junk mail but all that has changed. In recent years the mail has become so dreadful that… Continue Reading

By A Strand

I got my first rejection letter. Actually it was an email which at least means technology is helping publishers to reject authors quicker. A few days after reviewing a PDF copy of my book, I received the following response from Strand Books, in Union Square: Hi Raymond, It… Continue Reading

Losing A Pet Can Be Harder Than Losing A Human Member Of The Family

Ajax, the most beautiful dog in the world

Each morning since we arrived in New York I carry our Jack Russel Ajax to the dog park over in Union Square. Ajax is on Prednisone which makes him pee like a fountain. Sometimes it’s kind of funny because he lifts… Continue Reading

New Video To Teach Kids That It’s Okay To Be Gay (Without Actually Teaching Them Anything At All)

I’ll admit it, my upcoming trip to Washington DC has been tainted by the recent Paris attacks but I don’t want ISIS to be the reason I didn’t go and besides I’m in New York city so it’s not like it’s really any safer here. I bought a same day… Continue Reading

Go Ahead Label Me: LGBT Children’s Books, 6-8 Years

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Just outside our place is the Union Square Barnes & Noble which also happens to be on my list for places I’d like to have my book at. I’m impartial to independent bookshops but this transaction is about the size of B&N’s database, the… Continue Reading

The Oscar Effect

Some of my life’s most significant experiences have happened when I wasn’t expecting it and only in hindsight can I appreciate how profound these moments have come to be and this is the case with a former roommate and one my best friends, Sandra Joy. Sandra is… Continue Reading

Would Anyone Care If Heather Only Had One Mommy And One Daddy?

Bureau of General Services Queer

Today I cycled over to New York’s gay bookstore, the Bureau of General Services—Queer Division (BGSQD) which is on the second floor of New York’s LGBT Community Centre. I walked in and was barely down the ramp before seeing Greg Newton, one of the… Continue Reading

Honestly, I’m Not A Pack Rat

Great Meeting Room 02

Print Ninja, the people that printed the book did a really great  job and today they sent me a few pics they took of the finished product which reminded me that I haven’t really considered where I am going to store all of them. The advance one… Continue Reading

Why That’s A Mighty Big Marketing Plan You Have There

TGMR Blog Image

There are so many things that I could do, should do, must do that the thought of actually selling my book is getting me anxious. I need a plan to put me back in control and because I don’t have very… Continue Reading

Shenzhen To New York And Back To Toronto

Irshad Manji reads The Great Meeting Room

Photo of: Professor Irshad Manji, Moral Courage Project When I ordered my books four weeks ago I had one hundred sent by airmail  from Shenzhen China (two weeks delivery) and the remaining four hundred by ground delivery which is a lot cheaper but adds four… Continue Reading

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Publishing Your Book But Didn’t Know Who To Ask

These books were ordered print on demand and while it costs a lot per unit it's worth it to get feedback BEFORE your first print run.

This is not my first time publishing, over the years I have produced hundreds of publications, several magazines, dozens of zines but this is the first real book. When I say real it’s not to diminish the importance the previous works I have been involved with but real… Continue Reading