7 Minutes in Book Heaven with Mário César and Blessed Cure


Meet four time HQ MIX Trophy winner for best Webcomic Mário César and his new book Blessed Cure.

Like Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, César’s Blessed Cure uses comics to explore queer life. In this book, Acacio do Nascimento knew he was a different boy from others. He would rather be playing with dolls than playing soccer. The hula hoop interested him more than cowboy pistols. Scared by the possibility of their son being a homosexual, Acacio’s parents begin conversion therapy, starting when he was five years old, to make him a “normal boy” like the others.

Mário César is an awarded comic book’s author from Brazil. He has published comics since 2006 and he was one of the first openly gay authors to address issues of sexual and gender diversity in Brazilian comics with the book Ciranda da Solidão (2013). He is also one of the creators and producers of POC CON, the first brazilian LGBTQ+ Comic Con.

Buy Blessed Cure

Head to our Bookshop store or buy directly: https://bookshop.org/a/82376/9781908030542

Connect with Mário César

Twitter: @mas_que_mario
Instagram: @mas_que_mario

Become an Associate Producer!

Become an Associate Producer of our podcast through a $20/month sponsorship on Patreon! A professionally recognized credit, you can gain access to Associate Producer meetings to help guide our podcast into the future! Get started today: patreon.com/thisqueerbook


Host/Founder: J.P. Der Boghossian
Executive Producer: Jim Pounds
Associate Producers: Archie Arnold, Natalie Cruz, Paul Kaefer, Nicole Olila, Joe Perazzo, Bill Shay, and Sean Smith
Patreon Subscribers: Awen Briem, Stephen D., Thomas Michna, and Gary Nygaard.


[theme music]

J.P. Der Boghossian: Why, hello everybody. My name is JP Der Boghossian, and for our new listeners to this podcast, we have a new episode of This Queer Book Save My Life, that drops next week. Today, we present Seven Minutes in Book Heaven, where I interview Queer authors about the new books they have coming out or are already out for us to love and to cuddle up with. With me today is Mário César. Hello!

Mário César: Well, hello everybody. I’m Mário César! I’m here from Brazil!

J.P. Der Boghossian:: We are so happy to have you here.

Mário César: It’s my pleasure.

J.P. Der Boghossian: Mário and I are going to spend seven minutes in this virtual studio talking about his new book, Blessed Cure, while also getting to know more about the amazing writer and human who is Mário César. So, Mário, are you ready?

Mário César: Yes. Thanks for the invitation. It’s really nice to be here.

J.P. Der Boghossian: Absolutely. I’m going to set the timer. And here we are. Question number one: Would you please describe for us your new book, Blessed Cure, as if you’re sharing it with your celebrity crush and telling us who that crush is, of course?

Mário César: Okay. Well, hello Oscar Isaac. How are you doing? My name is Mário César. I’m publishing my new book, which is called Blessed Cure, and it’s a book that talks about sexual conversion therapies, and I show that there isn’t a thing like a Gay cure. But you know, I can show you the cure for being straight.

J.P. Der Boghossian: I love it. If that happens, let us all know about Oscar Isaac.

Mário César: Oscar, if you’re hearing this, please give me a call.

J.P. Der Boghossian: Exactly. OK, question number two. What’s a sentence from a novel, essay, poem or other book that every time you read it, it gives you all the feels?

Mário César: There’s a poem by Wislawa Szymborska. I don’t know if I’m pronouncing it right, but it’s a poem that an ex-boyfriend showed to me and it gave me the chills. I kind of did a short story to give him as a birthday gift. It’s published in a book of mine called The Dance of Loneliness. The poem starts like this. “They are both convinced that a sudden passion joins them. Such certainty is beautiful, but uncertainty is more beautiful still.”

It’s really beautiful about how people get to know each other and how romance starts.

J.P. Der Boghossian: I like that. Uncertainty is beautiful still. Ooh, I like that a lot. I’m gonna have to read that. Okay, question number three. What do you feel is the best sentence you’ve ever written?

Mário César: Well, there is a sentence from the same book. It’s a short story from that book. It goes like this. The world may not be one big stage, but life is far from bringing a lighthearted romantic comedy. Life is closer to a horror movie with large doses of sarcasm!

J.P. Der Boghossian: That’s a good one. Ooh, I like that. That is a really good one. Very apt for right now. Okay, question number four. What is the best romantic scene you’ve ever read?

Mário César: I will quote a scene not from a book, but from a movie that I really, really love. It’s called Happy Together by Wong Kar- Wai. It’s a scene that two men did in Buenos Aires. It’s a really, really gorgeous scene. I really love that movie.

J.P. Der Boghossian: We’re going to have to check that out too. You’re giving us so many things to check out today. I love it. Question number five. What are your favorite scents or smells to write about?

Mário César: I would say the scent of coffee in the morning. That’s something that I really love. I also like the smell of perfume. I like my manly, because I’m well-each, you know what I mean?

J.P. Der Boghossian: Mm-hmm, I have to agree on that one. Question number six: What is the worst writing advice you’ve ever gotten?

Mário César: Well, I actually can’t remember. The only advice that I have are from close friends or authors too. Like they write to them and I ask what do you think about this? What do you think about that?

J.P. Der Boghossian: It’s so nice that you have that group of writing friends. It’s so important to have those folks that can read for you and you can lean into. I love that.

Mário César: Yeah, it’s very important, especially because we are writing about the LGBT community. Like I’m a Gay man. I don’t know much about the reality of Trans people. So I really like to ask advice. what do you think about this? Because it’s a reality that I don’t understand myself, so I have to get that kind of feedback to know if I’m not writing some nonsense or something that can be offensive, no?

J.P. Der Boghossian: Absolutely. Okay, we have under a minute here. So question number seven, promote yourself. How do we order your book? How do we follow you on social media?

Mário César: Well, my new book is called Blessed Cure. It shows what it is to have your life marked by sexual aversion therapies and homophobia. It took place in Brazil, so I show the reality of my country. I show also some of the censorship and the violence that we suffered here during the military dictatorship as well. So I hope you’ll really like the book. I want to show every Queer person around the world that you are not alone, that you are not sick for being Gay, Lesbian, or Trans or whatever. I hope you like the book. On social media, I am @mas_que_mario. You can find me there.

J.P. Der Boghossian: On Instagram?

Mário César: Yeah, and on Twitter as well.

J.P. Der Boghossian: Perfect. Well, thank you so much for your time today, Mário!

Mário César: Oh, thank you. I really loved it.

J.P. Der Boghossian: Definitely. You’re our first guest that we’ve had from Brazil. I’m really excited to have you here today.

Mário César: Oh, it’s really nice to hear. This is actually my first interview from the United States or in English.

J.P. Der Boghossian: Oh, well, we’re very honored that we get to be the first one. That is exciting. We’re really honored to have that for you.

Mário César: Oh, thank you very much!

J.P. Der Boghossian: We have come to the end of this episode which has been executive produced by Jim Pounds. Our associate producers are Archie Arnold, Natalie Cruz, Paul Kafer, Nicole Olilla, Joe Perrazzo, Bill Shea, and Sean Smith. We keep our podcasts accessible. Find those transcripts at thisqueerbook.com. Buy all of the books we feature on our podcast in two clicks or less at prices equal to or better than Amazon at our bookshop.org store. Visit thiscreerbook.com slash bookshop. Find us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. We’re at This Queer Book.

My name is J.P. Der Boghossian and stay tuned to this space every Tuesday for new episodes of 7 Minutes in Book Heaven or This Queer Book Saved My Life. Until then, see you Queers and allies in the bookstores.

[theme music]