Creating Waves of His Own; Hair Salon Owner Van Kirby Releases New Memoir


Dog Ear Publishing releases “On the Table by the Window: The Journey of a Gay Dad in Indiana” by Van Kirby with David Hoppe.

A longtime hairstylist chronicles his life – including winning custody of his children — in this new book released by Dog Ear Publishing.

It’s not easy being a single parent when a marriage dissolves. Couple that with being a gay father in the 1970s, and the challenges never seem to end. This new book – written as Van Kirby is on the verge of becoming a great-grandfather — details his fight to win custody of his four children, as well as his experience of coming out during a time when homosexuals typically stayed in the closet. Along the way he shares glimpses of childhood adventures in Kentucky, a farm in Hall, Ind., and Indianapolis.

In “On the Table by the Window: The Journey of a Gay Dad in Indiana,” Kirby describes beauty school as well as opening his own business and the disintegration of his marriage. A fateful evening in a Fort Wayne bar leads him to the love of his life, Daniel. With a more steadying presence in his life, Kirby decides to file for full custody of his children, launching a four-year battle that begins with coming out to his parents but ends with his winning custody April 26, 1976. Kirby doesn’t sugarcoat his own struggles with sexuality or the encounters that result. In the end, what comes through this unforgettable memoir is the triumph of love over convention, a true inspiration to those facing challenges of their own in life and love.

Author Van Kirby manages a hair-styling salon in the Broad Ripple area of Indianapolis. He and his partner of 41 years, Dan Detrick, split their time between homes in Broad Ripple and Sarasota, Fla. Contributor David Hoppe is an award-winning author, journalist and playwright who writes a weekly column for “NUVO.” He also wrote the book “Food for Thought: An Indiana Harvest” and has had essays and short fiction published in “Notre Dame Review,” “New Art Examiner” and “Library Journal” among others.


For additional information, please visit

On the Table by the Window: The Journey of a Gay Dad in Indiana

Van Kirby with David Hoppe

Dog Ear Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-4575-2271-0                        120 pages                        $14.95 US

Available at Ingram,, Barnes & Noble and fine bookstores everywhere.

About Dog Ear Publishing, LLC

Dog Ear Publishing offers completely customized self-publishing services for independent authors. We provide cost-effective, fast, and highly profitable services to publish and distribute independently published books. Our book publishing and distribution services reach worldwide. Dog Ear authors retain all rights and complete creative control throughout the entire self-publishing process. Self-publishing services are available globally at and from our offices in Indianapolis.

Dog Ear Publishing – self-publishing that actually makes sense.

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