a novel

Inspired by the Clinton White House scandals and the national obsession with wealth, power, celebrity and violence, my latest is a tabloid tale of crimes of passion, high fashion and murder.

“Out scandalizes Scandal.” Jewelle Gomez, author of the Gilda Stories

“Ruff's third novel is a high-stakes drama." -- Kirkus Reviews

“And now blooms GJS II and Shawn has become one of America’s most important authors.” Grady Harp, Amazon Top 100 Reviewer




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I’m from Cincinnati, Ohio. Washington, D.C., and Savannah, Georgia, are places I’ve lived, but New York City has ever been home. I attended the University of Cincinnati and later decided against further study at Columbia University in favor of writing. So far, there are 3 novels, the first of which earned a Lambda Literary Award for Debut Fiction, among other plaudits. I’m also editor of a landmark book published by Henry Holt: Go the Way Your Blood Beats: An Anthology of Lesbian and Gay Fiction by African Americans.


Books I’ve either authored or edited so far — each narrowing in on African-America but as a window onto American history, race, class and culture.


set against the Clinton White House scandals, and the nation’s cultural obsessions with wealth, celebrity, race and violence — an intriguing faceted look at disillusionment at the heart of the new American age. 2016

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    redemption in the unexpected: A widower, professor and marijuana artisan and philanthropist befriends a boy and his mother living in crime - and drug-infested public housing. 2013

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      Toss and Whirl and Pass

      the journey of the living brought unbearably to a close, the dance of life — memory, love, loss — in the age of AIDS and terrorism. 2010

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        a panorama of Cincinnati, Ohio, not six years after the Civil Rights Act of 1964, zeroes in on a black boy and a Jewish boy in love and trouble. 2008

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          Go the Way Your Blood Beats

          An Anthology of Lesbian and Gay Fiction by African American Writers, a literary look at the LGBT presence in the history of black American literature. 1996

            Autographed copies available on quoteeditions.com. Find the ebook of any of these titles on Amazon, iTunes, Google Play and Barnes & Noble.


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