Beierle, Andrew W. M.
Beierle, Andrew W. M.
PERSONAL: Born in New York, NY. Education: Pennsylvania State University, journalism degree.
CAREER: Orlando Sentinel, Orlando FL, member of staff for four years; Brown University, Providence, RI, medical and science writer for three years; Emory University, Atlanta, GA, editor of Emory magazine, 1980–, former editor of Goizueta. Participant, Sewanee and Bread Loaf writers conferences, 2001.
MEMBER: Kappa Tau Alpha, Omicron Delta Kappa.
AWARDS, HONORS: Honored by Sigma Delta Chi, National Society for Medical Research, Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, Lambda Literary Foundation, and International Association of Business Communicators; Emory magazine was awarded more than fifty awards for design and content under Beierle' oversight.
The Winter of Our Discotheque, Kensington Books (New York, NY), 2002.
Work represented in anthologies, including Rebel Yell: Stories by Contemporary Southern Gay Authors, edited by Jay Quinn, Haworth Press, 2001. Contributor to periodicals, including Harrington Gay Men's Fiction Quarterly.
SIDELIGHTS: Andrew W. M. Beierle's novel The Winter of Our Discotheque is an expanded version of his story "Pump Jockey," which was published in Rebel Yell: Stories by Contemporary Southern Gay Authors. Set in the 1970s, the nove reflects the pre-AIDS era, during which gays engaged in the kind of promiscuity and "free love" that began as a heterosexual phenomena in the 1960s. The title is a foreshadowing of the end of this period, as the scourge of AIDS made its presence known. The story ends with the destruction by fire of the Carousel disco.
In the novel Overweight television star Dallas Eden becomes fascinated by Tony Alexamenos, a comely young man who is pumping gas in South Beach, Florida. Dallas kicks out his current lover and replaces him with Tony, who after a rough childhood and life as a surfer, is enticed by luxury living in the mansion Dallas shares with his mother. Tony begins studying theater, enters into a relationship with his closeted teacher Connecticut Jones, and the pair soon move to New York, where Tony is cast in a production of Hair. After the relationship ends, Dallas reenters Tony's life and introduces him to the world of fashion modeling. There the weak-willed Tony is seduced by drugs and other destructive forces, and when the gay bar, the Carousel, is struck by arsonists, Tony and fellow male model Valentine Rittenhouse, are injured.
Eric Rangus wrote for Emory Report online that "the style of the book, which is very over the top, also is extremely descriptive. The appearance of characters is painstakingly detailed, and Beierle devotes a great deal of care to describing his settings. It's a very effective tool for what is a very visual and sensual subject." Lambda Book Report reviewer Greg Herren wrote that in The Winter of Our Discotheque Beierle "draws the reader into Tony's world, and into Tony's life, in ways that make it virtually impossible not to care about him."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Lambda Book Report, August, 2002, "Country Come to Town: Southern Novelists Jim Grimsley and Andrew W. M. Beierle Revisit the '70s," p. 6, and Greg Herren, review of The Winter of Our Discotheque, p. 8.
Publishers Weekly, February 25, 2002, review of The Winter of Our Discotheque, p. 39.
Emory Report Online, http://www.emory.edu/ (September 3, 2002), Eric Rangus, "Winter Solstice."
QueerWriters.com, http://www.queerwriters.com/ (March 25, 2005), "Andrew W. M. Beierle."