Author Michael Alvear Reminds Us How To Top & Bottom Like A Porn Star

Books on sexual behavior and activity are commonplace, but finding them for gay men can be a challenge. Thankfully, author Michael Alvear is bringing us plenty of information for almost anyone who is looking for some in-depth (and medically accurate) info on sexual health. I caught up with the author recently and we chatted about why he felt relaunching his two books How To Top Like A Porn Star and How To Bottom Like A Porn Star right now was important and what sex life will be post-COVID will really look like.

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Michael Cook: You released second editions of your books How To Top Like A Porn Star & How To Bottom Like A Porn Star. Is it completely kismet that we all suddenly have alone that you decided to release second editions? 

Michael Alvear: Kismet definitely. I started this way before COVID. The book was six years old and it was time to update it. I wanted to make publishing history; this is the first sex guide, gay or straight, that has medical illustrations in it. They are eye popping! I told the graphic designer that I wanted him to gross me out and turn me on at the same time (laughs). 

MC: How did the idea to include these illustrations come to your mind? 

MA: I was writing an article on sex toys and clicked on images for “sex toys”. For the first time, I saw a medical illustration of a man with a prostate massager inside, and it was like an “aha” moment. You see why it is shaped the way it’s shaped, because that’s how your organs are shaped. You saw the perfect fit and a lightbulb went off. Maybe I could show a penis going in the right way and the wrong way…

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MC: What do you think the biggest mistakes that a top makes sexually, as well as the biggest mistake a bottom makes.

MA: There are so many things we get wrong (laughs)! I think the bottom makes is not to be prepared, but not really the hygiene. The preparation of your body to receive a foreign object. If you have never ran a marathon, you would not show up to the Boston Marathon and run it; you would train. It’s the same idea with bottoming. If you wouldn’t show up for a marathon without training, why would you show you up for dick without training (laughs)? 

The second mistake that bottoms can make is that the idea that the top is in charge. The top, who knows nothing about how your built, is supposed to know what angle, the timing, and make all of these decisions about your body. He doesn’t know your preferences, your history, or your anatomy; yet you are going to make him in charge?

MC: That’s very true; you are essentially giving up control to someone who does not know your body. 

MA: Sometimes when I advise guys they are resentful at the idea that the bottom is always in charge and that the top is never in charge. The top has never been in charge when it comes to sex; the top is nothing but the bottom’s bitch. Who decides whether intercourse is going to happen, the top or the bottom?- It’s the bottom. I know the top can pressure you, but the fact that he is pressuring you means he is not in charge, he is trying to influence you. You only try to influence the decision maker. If you are the decision maker, you are in charge. 

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MC: Essentially, once you find out you are in control, you can essentially do anything you want.

MA: I think it is a tricky one to try and communicate. The entire reason for bottoming is to experience submission, but how can you experience that when you are in control? I acknowledge the contradiction, but life is a contradiction. How you manage it is to understand that you can control things without being dominant. You can be in control without barking out orders. 

MC: When did you know that working in this unique type of genre would be the path you would follow? 

MA: I started writing a sex advice column in the gay press. The editor wanted to syndicate Dan Savage’s column in the paper, but they wouldn’t let it run. The editor wanted something “Dan Savage-esque” that was informative and funny. I started writing and it just took off. It got a lot of buzz and more papers started carrying it. Channel 4 in England auditioned me for being the co-host of Sex Inspectors which ran on HBO. Then I started writing books. It started with Dan Savage saying no. 

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MC:When you are out socially with friends are you the “go-to” for all questions sexual? 

MA: Oh no not at all (LOL). For the longest time, I actually wrote under a pseudonym and my friend didn’t know. Dan Savage will even tell you, he rarely gets questions from friends. There is something about reading about sex, but a conversation opens you up to all kinds of social judgements. I think that is very inhibiting for people. I rarely get questions from friends or acquaintances at all. 

MC: What do you think you have not written about that you could possibly uncover next? 

MA: Im actually in the middle of writing it now. It is going to be about how you spice up your sex life in a way that is meaningful. I get letters where people want to spice things up or try new things, but don’t know where to start. I want to write about is the perspective between the analysis that Google searching this may give you and the fear and the tribalism invitations of books about things like BDSM. How do you figure out what resonates for you so that you start the search knowing something better about yourself? There are many books about being a dom top, or a sub bottom and I can’t add to that; what I can add is how you start the process. 

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MC: Speaking of spicing things up, for many gay men the automatic default is to open your relationship to a three way. Why do you think that is? 

MA: I don’t disagree at all. The answer is not specific to a three way, but more that we are wired to spill our seed far and wide, gay or straight. It’s not normal not to want to do that. That’s not the aberration; the monogamist is the aberration. The monogamist are the people who have evolved in a way that they place more priority on the non-sexual than the sexual. I don’t mean they are higher beings, they have evolved in a way that they are willing to sacrifice the sexual for the non-sexual. I think excitement, newness, the adventure, those are the things that drive us. 

https://youtube.com/watch?v=XwbvWDDu684

MC: How do you think quarantine and the past year is going to change people sexually? 

MA: There have already been studies done and the info came out in September and showed that gay men are having more sex during pandemic than before it. I was very shocked by it. The study shows that there is an increase of 2.3 partners between March/April/May versus the three months before COVID. They also found out that binge drinking and substance abuse have gone up dramatically, and the authors think that the is what was driving it. The survey was shocking and was done by the University of Michigan. Even more shocking, when they asked the gay men if they could catch COVID from sex, 50% of them said no. It really draws a distinction that cannot be made. Whether you are sucking or fucking, you are breathing the person’s air; you don’t necessarily have to kiss them.


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