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Ken Harvey was born in Lynn, Massachusetts, otherwise known as the city of sin, where he lived until attending Bowdoin College in Maine. After college he spent a year in Spain on a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship to study changes in the Spanish theater after Franco’s death.

Ken was a teacher and administrator for over 25 years. During that time he received a number of grants, including one to study the life and work of Sylvia Ashton Warner and another to travel to Spain from the Ortega y Gasset Foundation. He holds an MA in Spanish Language and Literature from Middlebury College.

His memoir, A Passionate Engagement, takes a very personal view of the same-sex marriage movement in the United States. It is now available from Aequitas Press (a Pleasure Boat Studio imprint). Joan Wickersham, the National Book Award-nominated author of The Suicide Index, says of the book, "There’s no question more important than whether or not you get to marry the person you love. Ken Harvey shows what happens when personal lives intersect with a great political struggle, and he does it with enormous insight. This is a subtle, sensitive, and very moving book.”

Visit Ken's blog at and his website at

You Were with Me Everything Would Be All Right is a collection of thirteen stories, ten of which have been published in nationally distributed literary magazines. Although most of the stories deal with the lives of gay men, much of their spark comes from the mixing of gay and straight worlds. Harvey’s compassionate eye was noted by the judges of the Willa Cather Prize when they explained why they named his collection a finalist in their competition. Wrote the judges, “Great humanity...humor and tragedy....some extremely original, compelling writing...This is really good writing in all regards. Some stories are truly remarkable. ... I couldn’t put it down.”
	Many of the stories take place in and around the Boston area as well as in Lynn, on the Massachusetts North Shore. While the stories deal with serious issues, it is the blend of wit and darkness that makes these stories unique. In the title story, a gay couple discovers a postcard with a mysterious message in a used bookstore that sheds light on their own relationship; in “So This Is Pain,” a woman escapes the grief of her marriage by traveling to Oaxaca, Mexico; in “The Near Occasion,” a gay son tries to find his father who fled the family years earlier; in “Mother Country,” the three parents of a child - two lovers and the biological mother - escape to Spain to forget the child’s death; in “Mr. Bubble, I Love You,” the young son of a therapist develops a crush on one of her patients, with hilarious yet moving results.
	There are no villains in Harvey’s stories, just flawed people trying to lead the best lives they can. Along with the potholes of the road they travel are many moments of great humor and some optimism, like life itself.

ken harvey

A Passionate Engagement is both a love story and a story of political activism. In this remarkable memoir, Ken Harvey (award-winning author of If You Were With Me Everything Would Be All Right) reveals his own experience of coming out as a gay man, of meeting and falling in love with the man who would become his husband, and of growing into a social and political activist. Much of the story is filled with the kind of sensitive writing that Harvey demonstrated in his earlier work, but this book also shows a different side as he moves from the fictional to non-fictional, as he puts himself bluntly in the middle of the conflict.

As the book progresses, the reader moves with Harvey from outside observer to inside participant of the political struggle for same-sex marriage. His shift is significant, and a reader can't help but be moved along with him. This is a timely and important book, one that puts a truly human face onto this important social movement.