Search - List of Books by Thom Nickels
Born in Darby, Pennsylvania, Thom Nickels grew up in Chester County where he went to a local high school in Malvern. He enrolled in Philadelphia's Charles Morris price School of Journalism where he co-edited the school's magazine, The New Price Review. Upon graduation he received the Carrie May Price Award for Best Student Journalism. Nickels then enrolled in Baltimore's Eastern College on Mt. Vernon Square where he majored in Liberal Arts. The Vietnam War disrupted his education when he was called to do two years of alternate service as a conscientious objector. Nickels writes about this period of his life in THe Boy on the Bicycle, in an essay entitled 'The Fever of a Time and Place.'
Total Books: 8
Nickels was given Conscientious Objector (CO) status. In the 1960s a CO was responsible for acquiring a low end position in a hospital (usually as an orderly) to meet draft board requirements. These requirements also mandated that a CO find a job at least 100 miles from home. Nickels traveled to Boston, specifically Harvard Square in Cambridge, to find a place to live. He was eventually employed by Tufts-New England Medical Center as an operating room orderly.
Nickels began writing for the underground alternative press and joined the Boston Gay Liberation Front. While working at Tufts, he met Bauhaus architect Walter Gropius. Nickels wrotes in his introduction to Philadelphia Architecture that as an operating room orderly he went to Gropius' room to transport him to the OR.
He left Boston in 1971 for Boulder, Colorado to revise a book he had been working on for some time. He returned to Boston, where he lived in the house once owned by Civil War abolitionist Charles Sumner on Hancock Street in Beacon Hill. Nickels returned to Philadelphia where he became a columnist for the Philadelphia underground newspaper, The Distant Drummer. In the ensuing years, he joined the Gay Alternative Magazine as poetry editor.
In the early 1980s his biweekly gay column, Different Strokes, became the first openly gay column in a largely mainstream newspaper He started publishing books in the 1980s.
He is a listed Contributing Writer for the Gay and Lesbian Review and he is the Religion Editor for the Lambda Book Report.
His travel essay have been published in Passport Magazine (New York), The Philadelphia Bulletin, and Travel Weekly (Secaucus, NJ), a trade journal for the travel industry.
In 1998, he co-founded The Arts Defense League and helped to spearhead a City-wide movement to keep the Maxfield Parrish mural, “Dream Garden,” in Philadelphia. He was interviewed by ‘People’ magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Daily News, and NPR.