Queer Author Profiles: Dan Ackerman, Author of That Doesn’t Belong Here
Dan Ackerman is a writer and educator who has lived in Connecticut for their entire life. They received their BSED from CCSU in 2013 and wrote their Master’s thesis on representations of women in same-sex relationships in contemporary Spanish literature and cinema. Currently, Dan is studying for a second MA in ABA and works in a center school for students with variety of intellectual, developmental, or multiple disabilities. In their spare time, Dan continues to read and write, supplemented with a healthy amount of movie marathons and gaming.
What sparked your interest in becoming an author?
The insatiable need to write. I don’t think I could stop even if I wanted to, so I guess getting what I’ve written published has always been secondary to getting it on paper.
What’s the first book you fell in love with?
I was going to say Interview with the Vampire, but the real truth is that I had devoured the Hardy Boys series before I even knew that Anne Rice existed.
Do you have any comfort books/shows/movies/games?
Silence of the Lambs never fails to make me feel better about what’s going on.
Do you tend to prefer villains or heroes?
I’m a sucker for a well-written bad guy. It probably has a lot to do with being an outcast for most of my life; it’s not the best mindset, obviously, but there we are.
Vampires or werewolves? What do you think that says about you?
Vampires, all the way. I don’t have problem with werewolves (except for when the werewolf stories fall into the alpha/dominance/beating others into submission storyline, which I find toxic and boring), but vampires have always been my thing. There’s something about weirdos who lurk in the night and are out of touch with the real world that speaks to me.
Do gender/sexuality feature in your writing?
All the time! They’re both topics I deal with in my day-to-day life, so they definitely come up in my novels.
How many unfinished novels do you have on your computer right now?
I want to say I have about a dozen novels that I’m currently working on. Inspiration for different parts of them comes and goes, so I try to get done what I can on one when I’ve got it on my mind.
Check out That Doesn’t Belong Here and What Everyone Deserves, and catch up with Dan on Facebook and Goodreads.
That Doesn’t Belong Here begins when Levi and his friend Emily discover an impossible creature in an abandoned pick up. The thing is wounded, frightened and the two friends cannot leave him to the mercy of rubberneckers and tourists. This novel explores what it means to be a person, as the creature, Kato, begins to display not mere intelligence or friendliness but what can only be explained as humanity. The question of who we are allowed to love arises for Levi and Kato, as they are not just crossing the boundaries of gender or sexuality, but of species.