I am both a god and a piece of meat. I am adored and disrespected, often both at the same time.
I wanted to make porn for about ten years, ever since I had the chance to perform in live sex shows with pornstar (and my teenage wank-fantasy) Ashley Ryder in London’s gay sex clubs. It was 2010, and this was an exciting introduction to the ‘glamour’ of sex work, the thrill of being sexualised, and being an exhibitionist – and because it was live there was none of the danger of the evidence coming back to haunt you on the internet in the future.
There were many reasons why I took me almost nine years to enter the industry. Relationships were a big part of this, as well as the worry of how it might affect my future, or what my family might think. But I think crucially it is about confidence. I never felt beautiful growing up, I was lanky and awkward, and the guys I liked never seemed to like me. I felt awkward having my photograph taken. When I was 25 I started to go to the gym, because I was desperate to fit in with gay society. I know that was the wrong motivation, but now exercise (including playing rugby and dancing) is something that makes me so happy, that I would miss it if it stopped being part of my life. Crucially though I think confidence has come with age. Now I can embrace my big ears and long nose, my receding hair line, and the scars on my tummy. These are the unique parts of me that make me who I am. When guys ask me for advice now about joining the industry, I also say that they need to feel confident in themselves first.
In 2018 I had been talking on Scruff to Australian pornstar Rogan Richards (another guy whose work I had been jerking off too a lot). By coincidence we both found ourselves in Paris at the same time, and we met up one afternoon to film together. Rogan’s fucking style and porn persona is very macho and aggressive, usually fucking guys who don’t work in the industry but want to get dominated by him on camera: and the fucking was exactly like that. But his personality is also really warm, and I really enjoyed hanging out with him and chatting. He gave me a lot of advice about the industry and his experiences. It was basically this moment that confirmed to me that I wanted to go for it and make porn.
In September that year my scenes with Rogan were released on his website (www.RoganRichards.com) and I created my porn name and Twitter account (@JohnThomasXXX). At this time I was still working my full time job, but I knew I was leaving soon to move to London and study my Masters degree, so there wouldn’t be problems with work. I got a thrill from seeing my scenes online and people talking about them.
I then started to apply to studios for work. Initially I approached one small studio in the UK, but although they seemed interested once I gave them my filming availability I never heard back from them. I also applied to Tim Tales – probably the studio making my favourite porn at this time. I didn’t think they would be interested in me, but I thought it was worth a chance. I was shocked when I started speaking directly with Tim Kruger, and he wanted me to come to Barcelona and film two scenes. The money was also much better than the UK studio had been offering, and Tim Tales were also going to pay for my flights and hotel. When I was sat on the aeroplane, early one Saturday morning in December, I couldn’t really believe that it was real. That someone would think that I was worth all this expense, having never even met me. I filmed two scenes that weekend, with Franklin and Eduardo. After I had finished the scene with Eduardo (which is now the most viewed scene on www.TimTales.com), I was asked to go Exclusive – which means only working for that studio, but being guaranteed work and at a higher salary. Over Christmas I thought about this offer, which is also when these first two scenes were released. In January I agreed to go Exclusive, it was definitely the right choice for me, right now. Since then I have spent this year filming with Tim Tales during the holidays of my Masters degree, focusing on my school work during term time. Alongside this I have also done live sex shows in London and Europe as well as goo dancing and modelling. In May 2019 I won the Prowler European Porn Award for Best Newcomer, as well as Best Couple with Tim Kruger. I have also made loads of amazing friends who are also sex workers and porn actors.
As time has gone by I now start to get recognised more and more, and receive lots of messages on social media from fans and admirers. Recently, when things have been difficult for me, I have been really touched by the kindness of strangers, and people sharing their own stories of bereavement and how they have looked after themselves. I find this very humbling.
However, and this is particularly in clubs, I am definitely just seen as a piece of meat. People have told me how much they love my work whilst (effectively) sexually harassing me by trying to grope my cock or finger my arse. I am aware that by creating a porn persona that I am saying that I exist in this context only, but I think that’s because we have a really complicated relationship with sex and our bodies in Western post-Christian society. Even in the gay community we routinely slut-shame our friends, for instance, and police what other people can and can’t wear. I grew up in a religious family, went to very religious schools, and for most of my working career was teaching children and young people. I hope in the future we can understand that human sexuality is a beautiful part of our well-rounded lives. It can be private or public, fall within any part of a spectrum of genders and sexualities, and does not solely define us. I know we are not there yet, but I hope I can be part of a movement to change that. Until then I’ll let you know that you can support me directly by subscribing to my Just for Fans (justfor.fans/JohnThomasXXX) and I will continue to use my body to pay my bills, and take me on adventures. I am a god, and I am a piece of meat. And their is a beauty in the sacred and the profane existing side by side.