Many LGBT+ people will understand the hardships and pain of growing up LGBT+ in a conservative environment. The Promise of Silence tells the autobiographical story of Marshall, who was born and raised in Cork. In the following interview, Marshall discusses his book and upcoming documentary and describes his journey to acceptance.
What is The Promise Of Silence about?
The Promise Of Silence depicts the religious, social and political battle of a homosexual to survive in a hetero-normative culture… It’s the historical truth about growing up homosexual in catholic Ireland, surviving the potent punches and the kicks as my peers crucified me at school, the force of their brutality when my so-called “holy” parents verbally, emotionally and physically gay bashed me in punishment for my “immorality” and the tears because the sermons in mass banished me from the kingdom of heaven.
I suffered what no homosexual should ever experience. I wanted to die. I literally battled for my freedom.
Why was The Promise Of Silence self-published?
Because an anti-catholic gay-related book did not conform to the target market of traditional Irish publishers. I got the impression that they would prefer me to shut up and stay in the dark dusty closet of silence forever.
Why do you think Ireland’s LGBT community have embraced the book?
The Promise Of Silence sparks great reflection about the brutality of gay bashing, the sufferance of homophobia, the solitude of being in the closet, the fear of social judgement, the emotional act of coming out and the injustices of homosexual discrimination. All readers that have taken the emotional journey into The Promise of Silence have been profoundly touched because my story reflects the life of every homosexual.
What has the journey of The Promise Of Silence been like for you?
The Promise Of Silence at the 2018 Belfast Book Festival was a dream that I never dreamt of, and now an American Film Director agrees to make “The Promise Of Silence” LGBT Documentary Film in partnership with me.
Social homophobia and the brutality of the Catholic Church towards gays are controversial subjects to touch, but my vision is to portray the raw truth of homosexuality without any filter. Working with a production studio would definitely kill the liberty and creativity to do this, so the challenge to face is to do this independently.
So, you need to raise funds to make this documentary – what has been the public response to the documentary crowdfunding so far?
I battle for the homosexual freedom of others, but I certainly cannot battle alone. I’m profoundly touched by the crowdfund support from people that I never met, that believe in the vision of The Promise Of Silence. The positive public reaction demonstrates that there is a passionate audience for this documentary film.
The Promise Of Silence is about a journey from dark deep hatred and intolerance to a place of acceptance, equality and freedom. All people are entitled to dignity, respect, liberty and equality.
The documentary will examine the challenges that many members of the LGBT Community still face in Ireland. It will be embraced by the gay community, but any viewer who has ever suffered any degree of hatred or discrimination because of gender, race, religion or any other social judgement will also relate to this film.”
Do you believe that the Crowdfunding will reach its target?
The crowdfund objective is 20% of the overall budget, but what if 32,453 more people each donated 3 euro? Perhaps I’m a dreamer, but don’t all dreams come true if believed in?
Click here to donate to Marshall’s fundraising campaign via PayPal
“The Promise Of Silence” book is available to buy on amazon.co.uk