Before I Break Sequel Cancelled

In light of some recent discussions, I made the decision that the sequel to Before I Break, which was titled Once I Fall, will no longer be written.

Originally, Before I Break was going to be a standalone novel, but late last year I announced it would not only have one sequel, but two. I was putting off the sequel for a very long time due to the subject matter, which was going to focus more on the T in LGBT. Because of the transgender attention in the media and literature, I was excited, albeit nervous, to write the sequel.

Unfortunately, after some consideration, I do not feel as though I am the right one to write this story. I have cancelled the project for Once I Fall because of many reasons, a lot of them personal. With lots of debates such as locker rooms, pronouns, sex changes, and more, I realized the transgender route is not right for me, and I want to leave room for other authors to write theirs.

With that being said, you may be wondering if Until It’s Done, the third book, will still be written. At this moment, I am unsure, as some key events were going to make Until It’s Done what it was. The cancellation of this book really is not something I want to do, but I think by default, it may just end up happening and I do not want to lead fans on thinking it may happen.

So for now, both sequels are cancelled and will not be pursued. This does not mean I’m done writing contemporary young adult, as I have many more plans for the future. I hope that you all stick with me on my journey into 2016, where I’ll be releasing my next contemporary, The Long Road Home.


Before I Break Holiday/Christmas Sale

Because I’m unable to truly give back to my readers in any way, I decided that this year I would put my debut novel, Before I Break, on sale for free on Amazon once again.

Unfortunately, this only qualifies for e-readers, but for those that have Kindle’s, now’s your chance! I hope that everyone has a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. I look forward to seeing what 2016 holds for my writing and I hope you’ll be there to join me

Here is the link to Before I Break.

Before I Break Release Today: The Story Behind The Touching Novel

Today is the day that my LGBT Contemporary YA novel, Before I Break, re-releases through Booktrope. Many of you know the story behind the creation of this book, and many of you do not.

For starters, let’s take a look at the book.

Before I Break Final Cover

“Alec John Belle’s bold debut novel, Before I Break, introduces a courageous new author with a voice unafraid to tackle tough social issues.” -Alex Sanchez, author of Rainbow Boys and The God Box.

When religiously raised Cyril Hayes begins his junior year at East Hill High School, every choice he makes suffers a greater consequence. While facing challenges of friends, family, and love, he learns that hate and intolerance are also a very large part of our world today.

Cyril Hayes is seemingly just like any other male his age. He has the perfect girlfriend, Melissa Summers, his best friend, Jake Rivers, and a lawyer father who brings home enough money to support his family and then some. When Cyril begins his junior year, he doesn’t expect his life to spiral out of control when he meets Avery Branson, the new kid in school who has a big secret: he’s gay. At first, Cyril doesn’t handle this truth well, due to the way he was raised, but as the story progresses, he ventures deep into the reality of homosexuality and begins to accept Avery for who he is.

Not everyone is happy with Cyril’s new friend, including Jake, who believes that homosexuality is a sin and is refusing to budge his beliefs. But Avery isn’t the only one at East Hill with secrets. Soon a tragedy will strike, knocking Cyril’s world completely off balance and leaving a scar on his heart that will change his view of humanity all together.



The idea for Before I Break came very organically. In fact, I never planned on writing a contemporary YA novel of this nature. Because of my own struggles with sexuality, and my distrust toward many straight males my age and older, I never would have thought this would come about. In fact, this book broke my rule I set for myself when I decided I wanted to be a writer.

I would never write a book from a straight male’s POV.

There were quite a few reasons for this, and one of which was that straight males always treated me badly when I was younger. All my friends were females (minus, shockingly, my best friend). This was because homosexuality isn’t well accepted by younger guys. I didn’t know why some straight guys think being friends with a gay man is the worst thing that could ever happen to them.

One day I was sitting in Spanish during my sophomore year, and a thought suddenly crept into my mind. What would happen is a homophobic straight male become friends with a gay male unknowingly? What if the gay friend was not what the straight friend thought gay people would be like?

It was as if I see a movie right before my very eyes. Seriously. It flashed in my mind so fast, I could hardly believe I what I was thinking. The title, story, and characters just fell into my head. How does that happen? Of course, because of my rule, I said, “This idea is SO not going to happen, brain. Goodbye.”

I tried to ignore the idea as long as possible.

As you can imagine, it didn’t work.

The story continued to grow in my head. The thing that made it worse was that I hated Cyril. I hated my idea for an ending. Avery was like an exact replica of me, which felt so extremely personal I wanted to puke. But something kept sticking out to me. The ending. I couldn’t get the ending out of my mind. I couldn’t get Cyril and Avery out of my mind, either, so finally, I had to tell someone. Someone who I thought would hate the idea.

My mother.

So one night we were sitting on my grandma’s porch and I said, “Hey, Mom. I wanted to tell you about this idea for a book I have. It’s called Before I Break and is about a straight guy named Cyril who becomes friends with a gay guy named Avery. Cyril is religious, homophobic, and doesn’t like gay people. Except Avery, because Avery isn’t what he expects. Oh, and by the way, the ending is __________.”

I expected her to tell me that she hated the idea. I really did. You want to know what she said to me?

“You need to write this book.”

And I asked, “You really want me to write this?”

She shook her head. “I don’t want you to write this book. You need to write it.”

So it was settled. I was going to write this book. Well, it took me about a year before I actually decided to write it, because I was still cautious. I’d never seen a book like this before. Was it because it was a bad idea? Was it because it’d be breaking so many stigmas? Was it because of the fact religious affiliations would go absolutely berserk over an idea like this? I kept trying to tell myself it was a bad idea, but there was this nudge.

Many of you know I’m a Christian, so this was also hard for me. Would God really want me to write this book? I think so.

Finally, I sat down to write the book. Wrote it in two months. I sent out queries to agents, got rejected a gazillion times, but knew in my heart this was a good idea. It was a good story. It would touch so many lives, and I knew that.

I self-published it in September of last year. It got such good reviews. Everyone was extremely supportive. GLAAD event did an interview with me. I felt like I’d accomplished something huge.

Finally, Booktrope accepted my submission to them. This re-release is so important to me. This book tackles tough issues like being gay, suicide, self-harm, hate crimes, depression, and the challenges of friendships with different beliefs. Two different lives collide in this book, and the ending is something you don’t want to miss.

This is not a “gay” novel. Straight men can read it. Gay men can read it. Woman can read it. Teens can read it. These are things some teens face every day, and it’s important to raise awareness. It’s a story that needs to be told. I put so much blood and sweat into this story and these characters. I’ve laughed and cried while writing this book.

And you know what? It touched me. It changed me. Someone who was so scared for so long finally broke free from his shell. I hope it touches and changes lives just as much as it’s changed mine.

Words are powerful. And so are yours. Be the voice that needs to be heard.

-Alec John Belle

Same-Sex Marriage; What’s Next?

Today America made history. Today is a day that will not be forgotten, because an outpouring of love spread across the country. Hate cannot combat the amount of love I have seen come from friends, coworkers, and family.

Now that the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of same-sex marriage (or as we can now call it, “marriage”), I can proudly say that I’m alive. Now you may be wondering, But aren’t you happy to be alive every day?  I try my hardest to be happy every day. I’m going to share a story with you. No worries, you’ll see where I’m going with this by the end of this post.

I’ve never shared much about my past. Especially in such a public area like this. Today seems like a good day to tell my story as quickly as possible to prove my next point.

Where does my story begin? It begins like every other person who has struggled with being LGBT. As a kid, I loved singing, acting, and writing. I was a very creative child. No, not every gay person is creative, and not every creative person is gay, but I felt different. Something about me was always different. What was different for me than for most people was this: I always knew that I was gay.

Well, that may be a bit of exaggeration. I didn’t always know. Sexuality, while I think it is predetermined in every person, you don’t just come out of the womb with one. Or rather, you don’t know it right away. As a child, sexual orientation is not something you really think about. But something about me was different. By the time I was 7 or 8, I knew that I found boys cute.

Here’s where it gets interesting: I actually didn’t know it was “wrong” in the eyes of most people at the time. I really thought that me crushing on boys was okay. Of course, this led to problems with them. I remember in elementary school, I struggled really bad with making guy friends. To this day I still do, unless they’re gay. I have one straight male friend and that’s it.  I remember how hard it was. All I wanted was a friend, right? I quickly realized that wasn’t the case. I didn’t even know the word “gay”. I just knew I liked guys.

Skip ahead a few years to late elementary school. I started telling my friends about my crushes. As you can expect, this probably didn’t go over very well, especially since I grew up in the south. Other kids hated me. I developed serious emotional issues due to the bullying and my own anxiety over being different. It was something most kids my age weren’t dealing with. In fact, I was the only one in my school dealing with it. At least, so I thought. Maybe I was the only one being vocal about it. Either way, I was miserable. I was bullied, treated badly because of who I was, and even my school thought there was something wrong with me. I eventually came out to my family, and I seriously thought my parents were going to have a heart attack.  But this only made things worse.

Because my school knew I liked boys, they believed I was being sexually abused at home (which, for the record, DID NOT happen).   This led to my sister and I being taken away. Thankfully, the state quickly realized their decision was whacked, so we were sent back to my family. When I look back on this situation now, it makes me sick to my stomach. I was NEVER sexually abused. Ever. My parents loved me, even despite struggling with the fact that their only son at the time was gay.

In 5th and 6th grade, I dealt with more bullying. Was hospitalized for my emotional issues. Spent years feeling alone, like the world would always just HATE gay people. I thought I was flawed. I thought I was disgusting. I could barely stand to look at myself. Finally, by 7th grade, I began to slowly accept who I was, but that didn’t mean the bullying stopped.

The bullying continued all the way to 9th grade. Even though I was comfortable with myself, it still hurt. I still struggled to make friends with other males, and if I did, I messed it up. I was stuck on repeat. I didn’t know how to function or communicate.

For two years I struggled with self-harm. I attempted suicide 4 times. Depression and anxiety were taking over. I feared the world that we lived in. Finally, I was able to overcome my issues, and am proud to say I’m still alive today.

I am so happy to be alive today. Now, you may be wondering, Why did you just write all of that? Why confess so much online? Because I know I’m not the only one.

Let’s take a look at some startling statistics:

Unhealthy impact of LGBT bullying

  • 40% of homeless youth identity as LGBT.
  • LGBT youth are 4 times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers.
  • Questioning youth are 3 times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers.
  • LGBT youth who come from non-accepting families are 8.4 times more likely to attempt suicide than LGBT youth from accepting families.
  • Suicide attempts in LGBT youth are 4 to 6 times more likely to end in injury.
  • 29 states can fire you for being gay.
  • Two-thirds of LGBT youth report being sexually harassed.
  • A fifth of students report being physically assaulted for their sexuality.

So what does this all mean?  Yes, we’ve won marriage equality.  But these need to be our next focus. I know how hard these issues are to deal with. I’ve dealt with them personally.

We may have won this battle, but we have not won the war on LGBT people. I am sharing my story to raise awareness to the fact that this is not over. We need to protect our citizens. We need them to know they’re loved.

So readers, I ask…will you take a stand against homophobia today? Will you be on the right side of history?

Before I Break Short Stories

Many of you know that Before I Break was originally self published.  During the time after the book’s first release, I started focusing on other characters that had important roles in the plot.  I then came up with two short stories.

When my book got picked up by Booktrope, I asked my book manager about these short stories I’d written.  Originally the plan was to publish them through Booktrope to build the excitement for the book, but then we decided to do something a little more appreciative to the fans.

We decided to make BOTH short stories free!  And to make it even better, I decided to write a THIRD short story as well!

For those of you who do not know what Before I Break is, all I can say right now is that it’s an LGBT Contemporary YA novel that focuses on other social issues.  Some topics covered in the book and short stories are suicide, discrimination, mental illness, self harm, coming of age, discovering your sexuality, and more.

The three short stories descriptions are as follows.

1.  CAPRICIOUS (Before I Break, #0.5):  In this haunting prequel short story to Alec John Belle’s novel, Before I Break, Jake struggles with the idea of religion, discrimination, homosexuality, and life as he deals with an obvious mental illness.

2.  THE WINTER OF HARMS (Before I Break, #0.6): In this prequel short story to the upcoming novel,Before I Break, read Avery’s journal and see what pushed him to his breaking point, and the mistake he made that could have taken his own life.

3.  TURMOIL (Before I Break, #0.7):  Following the events of CAPRICIOUS, Melissa is happy in her relationship with Cyril, until she finds herself looking at other girls.  But she loves Cyril…right?

All of these short stories focus of the three supporting characters of Before I Break, which will focus on Cyril’s story.  In the novel, you’ll see all of the stories come together and how each of these characters lead to Cyril’s breaking point.

These short stories will be available my Wattpad account ( and my blog (

The release dates for these short stories are as follows:

CAPRICIOUS:  May 15th, 2015.
THE WINTER OF HARMS:  June 12th, 2015.
TURMOIL:  June 26th, 2015.

All leading up the the re-release of Before I Break!  These short stories will also be available for free as e-books for iTunes, Nook, Page Foundry, and quite a few other places, but those links are now live as of right now.

This book, along with these short stories, are very important to me.  This world I’ve created with these characters has grown on me, which is why I have some more announcements coming your way after the book re-releases.  I hope you all stick around to see how everything turns out. 🙂

Author Interview and ARC Giveaway

I know I haven’t been posting a lot lately.  Mostly that has to do with there not really being many things to talk about.

Fortunately, I did a recent author interview, along with that interview, she’s giving away and ARC of both BEFORE I BREAK and FORBIDDEN DARKNESS.  In case you aren’t aware, these are two books that I self-published and are now being re-published through Booktrope.  I’m really excited about this ARC copy.

If you want to check it out, be sure to click the link below!

Author Interview and Giveaway

Also, be sure to sign up for my newsletter here!

Before I Break: New Cover Information

Hey everyone!

It’s been a while since I’ve talked to you all.  With school, writing my two serial dramas on Wattpad, and trying to work on the reprints of Before I Break and Forbidden Darkness, it’s been a crazy couple weeks.  But today I have some news in regards to the cover of Before I Break.  

As I said in one of my previous blog posts, the covers for both of my books have to be changed due to being reprinted under Booktrope, and while I love both covers dearly, I had to make the right decision for me as an author, the writer and creator of these worlds, to make sure my books get read.  While I am sad to see those old covers go, and I don’t have much news on the Forbidden Darkness cover, I do have this to say:

I am working really hard with my cover designer to keep a very similar look.  As you know, I adore the cover for Before I Break because of all the symbolism behind it, so changing it is very hard.  I do believe some of the same stock photos will be used for the new cover, which will give it a similar feeling.  In other words, it’ll be a new cover, but you should be able to tell it’s a reprint.

As of right now, I have not seen the new cover but I know it’s going to be great.  I am so excited to share it with you guys when I finally get the chance.  I hope that all of you enjoy it as much as I know I’m going to.

Unfortunately this is the most news I can give you right now.  Hopefully I’ll have more in the weeks to come.  Take care and let me know what you guys think of the new cover having a similar look to the original!

Change is Coming

Change is coming, in case that wasn’t obvious by the title of this post. Why is change coming?, you may ask.  Well, both of my books just recently got accepted for publication by Booktrope.

I know, it’s not one of the Big 6, but it sure is a huge step toward it.  Booktrope allows me to choose my team (editors, book managers, cover designers, etc.) and we work together to reprint the books.  Now, what does this mean?  It means several things.

1.  Editing

One of the big differences you’ll notice is editing.  My first two books were not able to be professionally edited, but now they will, and this is a huge benefit to me.  I want what’s best for my books, and editing is, but I’ve never really had the money for it.  This is going to open the window for me to be able make my books the best they can be.

2.  Different Covers

This is something I can iffy about, but change is sometimes necessary.  I cannot guarantee that I will be able to keep the covers I have, and if I can’t, this means more change will be underway.  Honestly, though, change is sometimes good and for the better.  I’m going to trust that whatever comes from this will be better than I thought.  If you like the old covers and want the versions with those covers, I recommend buying the books while you can.

3.  Minor plot differences

The thing is, with editing comes minor plot changing.  I can 100% there will be at least one thing probably changed in the plots for both books by the time they are reprinted.  This is part of the author world and I am willing to accept whatever advice my editor gives me.  The main, overall plots will remain the same.

4.  Different prices

Booktrope has the right to set the book prices, I believe.  This means that the prices of the books may be different than what they are now, possibly a dollar or two more.  As of right now I don’t have much info but I am pretty sure they are going to change.

5.  Better books

The truth is, I can admit that my books aren’t perfect, which is why I am so willing to do this. I want my books to be the best that they can be, and I believe with Booktrope, I’ll be able to make that happen.  This isn’t about getting rich, because I know I won’t.  This is about doing what’s best for me, my books, and my readers.

I hope that you all stick around for the ride and see what’s to come. In the meantime, it’s time to celebrate that change that is coming. It’s going to be hard because I’ve done both of these books all by myself.  Yes, things will change, but it’s one I’m sure will benefit me in the long run.

Forbidden Darkness Cover1.3

5 Things I Learned While Writing Before I Break

Before I Break Finalxcf

I wish I could lie and say that writing Before I Break was an easy journey.  When I came up with the idea for the story, I knew it was going to be a difficult book to write, because I was going to be writing it from the point of view of someone I wouldn’t necessarily like in real life.  Here is a list of things I learned while writing my very first (and very challenging) published novel.

1.  Writing from a perspective of someone opposite from you.

If anything was challenging about this book, that would be it.  Not only was it hard for me to actually get inside Cyril’s head, it was difficult for me to get my fingers to type some of the things he would say, like “fag” or anything else that was hurtful.  I’ve had many experiences with straight guys that were not very pleasant, so when I told myself I was going to do this, I was looking at myself like I was crazy.

Am I really going to go through with this?  Can I even go through with this?  What if I use too many stereotypes?  What if he’s unlikable?  These are the things I worried about for MONTHS before I actually sat down to write.   I had an idea of where I was taking the ending, but the stuff in the middle…I had no idea.  I just knew that everything had to lead up to that ending–the ending that I didn’t really want to write but knew I needed to.  It was a hard book.  It really was.  I cried multiple times throughout the book, as well.  Some people think that makes me a baby, but a majority of people don’t know what I’ve gone through, so writing the book was not an easy task.  Writing from the perspective of the type of person who has told me to kill myself because no one wants me, or beat me up in school, or picked on my for being who I was…it was the hardest thing I think I’ve ever done as a writer, and for it to be my first book, I am extremely proud.

2.  Not all straight guys are jerks.  

This sounds like an obvious statement, but like I said, I’ve had pretty bad experiences.  Most of the straight guys I met were assholes, there’s no doubt about that.  In school, almost all of my friends were girls because I just couldn’t deal with straight guys.  It was awful.  I had to hide any time I saw one.  There was always this fear that I had, and I think a lot of times, the friendships with straight guys that I had that did go wrong eventually…it was my fault.  Because there was always this internal fear that something would go wrong, so it did.  Always.

This book was an experience.  Sometimes, I learned, guys (and girls too) just do what they know.  A lot of them truly don’t know any better and haven’t had any room to think for themselves.  There is sometimes this conflict inside of them, and that’s what I tried to portray in Before I Break.  A lot of people said they thought Cyril was bipolar, but he isn’t.  He’s confused.  He’s really, really confused and can’t make up his mind.

But the point is, I learned that they’re not all the same, and I wanted to write a book for straight guys in need of some ideas.  I want to change perspectives.  To prevent the ending of Before I Break from happening to others, this book needs to be read.  And I’m not just saying that because I wrote it.

3.  Religion CAN be used for good.

This was something I kind of already knew, but didn’t know how it could be put into action.  In this book, you had two sides: Homosexuality as a sin and homosexuality as a norm.  So which is right?  You can already assume my answer, but I think it’s up to the reader to decide.

Cyril’s mom grows as a character, even if just a little, because she looks into what she believes.  Cyril looks into it.  Melissa already had her heart set right.  Avery was a gay Christian. Pastor Morrison and Jake were homophobes.  There were a lot of dynamics in the book, and life is a lot like that.  Who is right and who’s wrong?  Will we ever really have the answer to that?

4.  There are different types of love.

Obviously there’s a family love, a relationship love, and then a friend love.  But is there somewhere in the middle as well?  Cyril struggled in the book and wondered if there was a possibility he could be gay.  There’s no denying that Cyril loves Avery, but it’s not in the way that many people wanted it.  Heck, even I wanted he and Avery to get down and dirty a few times, but I knew that wasn’t Cyril.  Cyril is straight and always will be, but there was that connection he and Avery shared.  It was strong and I think a lot of friendships in real life can be like that.

5.  The writing industry is hard.

I wish I could say I’ve made millions off of this book, but I’m not.  Actually, most people aren’t even aware that this book exists, unfortunately, but I have gained some fans and amazing friends through the process.  More people are buying every day, but I’m still not making a lot of money. Actually, I’m hardly making a dime.

If you haven’t read it already, it is currently free for Kindle on Amazon.

But the process is worth it.  Writing it was worth it.  Seeing it come to life as a book in my hands with a beautiful cover was worth it.  I just hope the readers find it as worth it as I did.

Before I Break, Free e-book

I just wanted to let all of my followers on here know that my first novel, Before I Break, is available for free from 1/17/15-1/21/15.  The prequel short story that can be read either before or after the novel will be free from 1/18/15-1/22/15.

Capricious coverBefore I Break Finalxcf

They are both LGBT themed stories and I love them with everything I’ve got.  Please check them out whenever you get the chance, and if you like them, leave a review!  Before I Break was an Amazon Bestseller in LGBT Issues for teens just last month!  The description for each follows.


In this prequel to BEFORE I BREAK, Jake’s erratic behavior and mood swings are affecting him in ways he never thought possible, and soon the insanity starts that will drag him down forever.

Before I Break

When religiously raised Cyril Hayes begins his junior year at East Hill High School, every choice he makes suffers a greater consequence, and while facing challenges of friends, family, and love, learns that hate and intolerance are also a very large part of our world today.

Cyril Hayes is seemingly just like any other male his age. He has the perfect girlfriend, Melissa Summers, his best friend, Jake Rivers, and a lawyer father who brings home enough money to support his family and then some. When Cyril begins his junior year, he doesn’t expect his life to spiral out of control when he meets Avery Branson, the new kid in school who has a big secret: he’s gay.

At first, Cyril doesn’t handle this truth well, due to the way he was raised, but as the story progresses, he ventures deep into the reality of homosexuality and begins to accept Avery for who he is. Not everyone is happy with Cyril’s new friend, including Jake, who believes that homosexuality is a sin and is refusing to change his beliefs.

But Avery isn’t the only one at East Hill with secrets, and soon a tragedy will strike, knocking Cyril’s world completely off balance and leaving a scar on his heart that will change his view of humanity all together.

Here are the links to both books as well!


Before I Break: