Wednesday, March 01, 2006

March Publishing Notes

The buzz: Andrew Lang will produce a film adaptation of Peter Lefcourt’s 1992 gay-themed baseball novel The Dreyfus Affair. Stone Village Pictures has optioned the film rights to A.M. Homes’s This Book Will Save Your Life. Rock singer Marilyn Manson plans to play author Lewis Carroll in his self-penned “arthouse horror” film Phantasmagoria — The Visions of Lewis Carroll. The two shirts worn by the stars of Brokeback Mountain garnered a record $101,100.51 for Variety, the Children’s Charity of Southern California, in a recent eBay auction. Gay philanthropist and Hollywood memorabilia collector Tom Gregory placed the winning bid. The Broadway opening of Lestat, the Elton John musical based on the Anne Rice vampire-themed novels, has been moved to March 25. In July 2006, a new translation of Mother Courage by Tony Kushner will be presented by at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park as part of the Public Theater’s summer season. Directed by George C. Wolfe it will feature Meryl Streep. Author and former Out Traveler editor Matt Link is launching a new travel magazine in conjunction with the Sherman’s Travel organization. After 10 years at the helm of Philadelphia Gay News, editor Patti Tihey says goodbye to the weekly newspaper. Window Media President William Waybourn has stepped down as president of the newspaper chain. Peter Polimino will be the new President. Author Greg Herren has started a regular column on writing for Erotica Readers & Writers Association website. Greg was also recently mentioned on the floor of the Virginia state legislature in an attempt by state Republicans to ban GSA alliances in high schools. Despite the controversy over the unmasking of author J.T. LeRoy, San Francisco publisher Last Gasp is moving ahead with their next LeRoy work, Labour, a novella illustrated by Australian artist Cherry Hood. Scribner and Pocket Books will publish Blind Fall, the upcoming novel from Christopher Rice, in early 2008. The new book deals with an Iraq veteran searching for redemption following the brutal murder of a comrade he betrayed. Rose MacMurray’s The Distant Strains of Thunder, a coming of age novel about a girl’s friendship with Emily Dickinson, will be published by Little, Brown. Courtney Love’s Dirty Blonde, journals and photos, is forthcoming from Farrar Straus & Giroux. Editors Christopher Anderson and Alecia Oleyourryk’s are on board for Boink: The Book, forthcoming from Warner books. Based on the controversial college magazine, a sex-positive, lifestyle publication, Boink: The Book will feature edgy narratives, prescriptive advice, provocative photos, and confessions from real college students. After 6 volumes of daily gay romance comic strips, Young Bottoms in Love, created by Tim Fish in August 2002, is coming to an end at the PopImage website. Howard Cruse, the renowned underground comix artist, drew the final webisode which debuted in February.

New Owner for Favorite Haunt: Kim Brinster, manager of the Oscar Wilde Bookshop for ten years, is now the owner of the bookstore. Brinster purchased the landmark Greenwich Village Bookshop at 15 Christopher Street on February 1, 2006 from Lambda Rising Bookstores. “It’s a thrill,” Brinster told Bookselling This Week. “I worked really hard to bring the store to where it is today, and I’m happy to know it’s mine. It’s played an historic role [in gay and lesbian history], and it’s so special to so many people.” “This is an exciting time for New York’s favorite and oldest gay bookstore,” said Deacon Maccubbin, Lambda Rising’s owner, in a statement. “Three years ago, Oscar Wilde was in imminent danger of closing forever when, at literally the last hour, Lambda Rising stepped in to rescue the historic bookstore. In the time since, Lambda Rising, working closely with Kim Brinster and the New York store’s staff, has brought the store back from the brink and restored financially sound operations.” The Oscar Wilde Bookshop has been in continuous operation in Greenwich Village since 1967.

The Place to Be: The fourth annual Saints and Sinners Literary Festival is moving forward as scheduled. The dates are May 12-14, 2006 in the French Quarter of New Orleans. The 2006 speakers and presenters include Achy Obejas, Martin Pousson, Karl Soehnlein, Radclyffe, Emanuel Xavier, and many others. This year there will be sessions led by Michelle Tea, Steven Saylor, and Greg Herren. For more information, visit Pink Ink, the Publishing Triangle’s queer book festival in New York City, returns June 9-11, 2006. A reading series and twelve workhops and panels are being planned. Visit for more details and updates.

Kudos: Alan Bennett has been nominated as Author of the Year in the British Book Awards. Martin Moran’s The Tricky Part is a nonfiction nominee for the Barnes & Noble Great New Writers Award. Authors Greg Wharton and Simon Sheppard were short-listed for the Rauxa prize for best erotic short story. Karla Jay received the Distinguished Faculty Award at the Tenth Annual Dyson Distinguished Achievement Awards, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences at Pace University. Ellen DeGeneres and her daytime talk show were nominated for 11 daytime Emmys. Brokeback Mountain was named Queer Favorite Feature Film on the recent voting on The Derek and Romaine Show heard on Sirius OutQ. At the British Academy awards (BAFTAs), Brokeback Mountain was honored for Best Film and Best Adapted Screenplay. Ang Lee won Best Director honors and Jake Gyllenhaal was named Best Supporting Actor. Philip Seymour Hoffman won for Best Actor for Capote. Brokeback Mountain was also cited for Best Adapted Screenplat by the Writers Guild of America.

Open calls: Eric Summers is editing an anthology of erotica based on original superheros for STARbooks Press. Deadline is December 31, 2006. For guidelines and submissions, visit the Starbooks Press Web site or e-mail Eric at Nominations for the 2006 Rauxa Prize Award are due by August 15, 2006. Given annually to an erotic short story of exceptional literary quality, the award carries a prize of $1000. Visit the Web site for more details. This year an additional prize for erotic poetry will be awarded and carries a $300 prize.

Play it Again, Ben: Gay composer Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) wrote the music for a 1937 English broadcast that included the W. H. Auden poem “Roman Wall Blues,” about a disillusioned soldier on guard duty in the northern extremes of the ancient empire. The recently uncovered score is set to be displayed in England at the Aldeburgh Festival in June and perhaps performed next year at the Sage Gateshead concert hall, near Newcastle, to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the broadcast and the centenary of the birth of Auden, The Guardian of London reported. The search for the score was initiated by John Mapplebeck, a filmmaker whose company plans a project about the broadcast. Fifteen years after his newspaper appeal for information proved fruitless, Mapplebeck happened to mention his search to Philip Pendrel-Smith, a retired banker whom he drives to evensong every Sunday. Pendrel-Smith, once an actor, was involved in the original broadcast and picked up and kept the music after the airing. The score has been sent to the Britten-Pears Library in Aldeburgh. “It’s a treasure,” said the librarian, Chris Grogan.

Passages: Octavia Butler, considered the first black woman to gain national prominence in the United States as a science fiction writer, died February 25, 2006. She was 58. Butler fell and struck her head on the cobbled walkway outside her home. The lesbian writer, who suffered from high blood pressure and heart trouble and could take only a few steps without stopping for breath, was found outside her home in the north Seattle suburb of Lake Forest Park. Butler began writing at age 10, embracing science fiction after seeing a schlocky B-movie called Devil Girl From Mars and thinking she could write a better story. In 1970 she took a bus from her hometown of Pasadena, Calif., to attend a fantasy writers workshop in East Lansing, Mich. Her first novel, Kindred, in 1979, featured a black woman who travels back in time to the U.S. South to save a white man. She went on to write about a dozen books, plus numerous essays and short stories. Her most recent work, Fledgling, an examination of the Dracula legend, was published last fall. In 1995 Butler was the first science fiction writer granted a “genius” award from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, which paid $295,000 over five years.