Martin is the author of two novels, two collections of short stories and several works of non-fiction. Apart from a two-act play that he produced in Los Angeles in 1995 and now considers best forgotten, his career as a dramatist began when he wrote four
one-man plays based on his short stories for the 2012 Solo Festival at the Lord Stanley Theatre in London. The plays won him that year's New Writing Award.
One of the plays, A Sense of Loss, was revised and became Tadzio Speaks . . . , which premiered at the 2013 Solo Festival.
Two - Los Feliz and Ben and Joe's - were revived as part of Californian Lives, three monologues from the Golden State which have had two London productions (King's Head and OSO Centre). The fourth play, Angel will be performed, together with Tadzio Speaks . . . at the Edinburgh Fringe in August 2014.
Character and emotion
Martin's fiction and drama focuses on character, using poetic language to gradually reveal the deep emotions that underlie everyday lives. His first novel was Weekend (1990), about a young gay man and his early relationships. This was followed by A Sense of Loss (1993). The title story is Tadzio's voice, decades later, when he looks back on that summer in Venice. (Two other well-known figures, the Flying Dutchman and Santa Claus, make separate appearances in the collection.) In 1996, Martin's second novel, The Butterfly's Wing followed
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two men separated when one was kidnapped by Maoist guerrillas in Peru. His most recent collection, First and Fiftieth (2002), brought together fifteen different narrators, men and women, young and old, spanning the globe from Rio de Janeiro to Los Angeles, Africa to Nepal, London to Siberia.
For many years Martin worked as a researcher and consultant into sexual behaviour across the world, particularly in its impact on HIV/AIDS. He is best known in the field for his publication AIDS and Men (1999). Extracts from his work can be read on
Martin has also appeared on stage and screen as an actor and is the owner of Arbery Books, an online business specialising in rare and antiquarian titles of
gay, lesbian, sexual and transgender interest.
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