About Len Handeland
Len Handeland’s creativity took him from attending FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) in Manhattan to hair. He studied fashion illustration, then years later to a long and successful 27-year career in the hair industry as a sought-after hairstylist, hair colorist, and salon owner. Len owned a salon in San Francisco’s Union Square for nine years and two salons in the town of Sonoma, Wine Country; for a total of 8 years; now fully retired from hair, Len became a full-time writer in the spring of 2021.
Len is a dynamic writer specializing in fiction, specifically horror, paranormal, and crime drama novels. Len has enjoyed writing as far back as middle school.
To further enhance and better his writing, Len has taken many creative writing classes and, in 2017, attended The San Francisco International Writer’s Conference, which inspired him to write his first book, “The Darkest Gift,” based on his love of vampires. He credits the late Anne Rice for being the author that inspired him the most to write his own dark vampire story. His first book earned him 5-star reviews from readers and professional book reviewers. His first novel became a finalist in the American book fest contest in the fall of 2021.
This spring, Len’s novel “The Darkest Gift” was awarded first place in the Bookfest 2022 awards in the category of Fiction/Horror. In addition, Len’s book and author interview were featured in the fall literature issue of “DeMode” magazine, with Len’s book named one of 10 must-read books of 2021. With the completion of Len’s second novel “Requiem for Miriam,” he’s just finished writing his third book (“Tales from the chair”), which is a collection of sordid tales, gossip, and advice to both hair professionals and those that see someone professionally for their hair. It is based on Len's 27 years in the hair industry. The book will be available by mid-July of 2022. Len recently started writing his fourth book, "Transplant" the story of a high-powered female executive, Elizabeth Bennington. She and her husband, Matthew, live in Boston. Elizabeth is a loving wife to Matthew and a devoted mother to their daughter, Maddie. They seem to have the perfect life except for Elizabeth's health. She has had congenital heart problems since she was a little girl and now, as an adult, requires a heart transplant. She is unaware of her organ donor, who she later discovers was a serial killer. Over time Elizabeth experiences fits of rage, becoming verbally and abusive towards her husband, along with uncontrollable urges she can't seem to control. It's as if she is being possessed by the organ's previous owner that beats deep within her. "Transplant" should be available in the fall of 2022.
When Len isn’t writing, some of his hobbies include hiking, biking, playing billiards, and vegetarian cooking. Len has trained in various forms of Martial Arts for over 20 years and appeared in several plays in Sonoma’s Community Theater. In addition, Len is also a singer who performed at numerous Wineries in the North Bay and Rotary events. The writer lives full-time in Palm Springs with his husband Byron Hancock and their two cats, siblings (Felix and Felicia)
Len handeland - Author of "The Darkest Gift and "Requiem for Miriam" and "Tales from the Chair"
Tales from the Chair
My third and latest book is my only nonfiction.
Tales from the Chair is the story of my experiences over the past twenty-seven years in a career known for creativity, artistry, and self-expression, a profession known as the hair industry. A job where I was surrounded by equally talented hair professionals who sometimes were entirely off the wall. It's the story of my interactions with some former coworkers and clients that were positive and meaningful and some downright contentious. While some of these individuals endeared themselves, others I barely tolerated. To some former clients, I was not only their hair guru but their therapist as well. This is the story of my humble beginnings, struggles, failures, and triumphs of being a sought-after hairstylist, colorist, best friend to some, and bay area hair salon owner. Welcome to the beautiful, wacky world of hair!
Requiem for Miriam
My second novel "Requiem for Miriam" is a story about love, deception, anger, and the dark side some humans possess. Set in Manhattan, Westchester County, New Orleans, and Mexico in the 1980s, it's the story of a man, Sidney Friedlander, trapped in a loveless marriage to a woman he no longer loves. He's desperate to feel love and passion in his otherwise dull existence. Sidney's search leads him to a stunning woman who reignites the passion deep within his soul. Their plot to kill his troublesome wife is sinister and diabolical. His wife's spirit vows revenge and will not rest until he is brought to justice! This novel will surely satisfy those readers looking for suspense, intrigue, mystery, and paranormal activity!
The Darkest Gift
August 1, 2021 The revised edition
My first novel is called “The Darkest Gift.” I wrote it as I felt no other author had written an enthralling vampire romance novel since the late Anne Rice wrote her brilliant vampire chronicle books, which featured two vampires of the same gender as a couple. Being a life-long fan of vampires, starting when I was a small child and into my adult years, I wanted to write a compelling and enthralling book where the characters are complicated. And same-sex couples are far less ambiguous about their sexual orientation than in vampire books of the last century. Where the emphasis is on love, whether human and vampire or two vampires, it was vital for me to avoid anything graphically sexual; instead, the focus is on the sensual aspect of two men together.
Also noteworthy was addressing stereotypes regarding vampires and some of the gay men in my book. That all vampires are evil and unfeeling creatures, that all gay men are effeminate, couldn’t be further from the truth. I utilized the classic tale of good versus evil (in this case, vampire against vampire) and how one of the human characters, Jack, despite his struggles with his sexual orientation, finally learns to accept and embrace who he truly is. I’m trying to deliver the message: do what is right and be true to yourself. In my novel, that applies not only to humans but vampires alike.
The locations in my book are places I have an affinity for, having spent time in each over the years. They are rich in history and culture, and each has an exquisite beauty. The settings include Paris, Haiti, and New Orleans, which all share a French connection.
Edgar Allan Poe
“Yes, I now feel that it was then on that evening of sweet dreams, that the very first dawn of human love Burst upon the icy night of my spirit. Since that. I have never seen nor heard your name without a shiver half of delight, half of anxiety"
Edgar Allan Poe