Tony Valenzuela was born in Los Angeles. He is a writer and outspoken activist on sexual politics, cultures and HIV, concerning gay men.
Though an activist for many years prior, in the late 1990's Valenzuela became the central figure in the debates around "barebacking" after a controversial talk he gave at a national gay rights conference where he affirmed the value of sex without condoms under some circumstances.
A February 1999 POZ Magazine cover story featuring him posing nude on a horse dubbed him in some circles, "the poster boy for bareback sex," while also opening up an international conversation on the myriad reasons behind sex without condoms for gay men. He subsequently wrote and performed an acclaimed solo show in Los Angeles called "The Bad Boy Next Door," chronicling his life as an HIV positive activist, porn star and sex worker and the contentious community politics that surface when one places sex at the forefront of his work.
He received his MFA in Creating Writing at the California Institute of the Arts in 2004 and has most recently been published in the LA Weekly, Frontiers, ZYZZYVA and "Inside Him," an anthology of literary gay male erotica. Valenzuela is currently writing a book on gay men and sexual risk due out in the Fall of 2008 with Carroll & Graf.
He lives in Los Angeles with his boyfriend Rob Ferrante and their dog, Boo. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.