Sunday, April 30, 2006

May Publishing Notes

The buzz: The Leslie/Lohman Gay Art and Foundation and Gallery premieres their new exhibition space in Soho this month at 26 Wooster Street. Letters and rare family photos of Truman Capote are now on permanent display in the restored Old Courthouse in Monroeville, Alabama, where the author spent his childhood. Aaron Hicklin, editor in chief of BlackBook, has taken over the role of editor in chief of Out. Christie Hefner, chief executive of Playboy Enterprises, is eyeing the gay market, with a launch targeted first in the UK. Samuel R. Delaney is one of the featured writers this summer at the 2006 Clarion Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers’ Workshop in East Lansing Michigan. Achy Obejas will teach a fiction workshop in Sayulita, Mexico in June as part of Talleres Toltecatl. Land in central Wisconsin that was once home to a murderer whose story inspired a novel by Robert Bloch and the movie Psycho (with Tony Perkins as Norman Bates) was pulled from an online auction at Ebay. Vampire Vow, Michael Schiefelbein’s novel of an ancient Roman officer falling in love with Jesus Christ before becoming a vampire, has been option as a film by Shattering Paradigms Entertainment. The next project from Funny Boy Films, the force behind Adam & Steve and Latter Days, will be an adaptation of Neil Miller’s Sex Crime Panic. The Longtime GLBT newspaper in South Florida, The Weekly News, has shuttered. Congrats to Greg Wharton and Ian Philips, the terrific Suspect Thoughts duo, who found a new home in Oakland and will keep the press in San Francisco. Lawrence Schimel’s new collection of short stories, Two Boys in Love, debuts in English after prior publications in Catalan, Spanish, German, and Greek. Carole Spearin McCauley’s 12th novel, A Winning Death, is forthcoming from Hilliard & Harris. Kensington will publish Andrew Beierle’s new novel, First Person Plural, in 2007. Lesbian rocker Melissa Etheridge will deliver the commencement address and receive an honorary doctorate in music at Boston’s Berklee College of Music this month. A suburban New York high school canceled an appearance by noted transgender author and activist Kate Bornstein after complaints from a local businessman. And Rosie O’Donnell could be headed towards The View, replacing Meredith Viera, who replaces Katie Couric on the Today show.

Kudos: Allan Gurganus was awarded a Fiction Fellowship from the John Simon Guggeheim Memorial Foundation. Among the writers receiving fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts were Vestal McIntyre, Andrew Sean Greer, and Patrick Ryan. Authors Krandall Kraus and Richard McCann were awarded fiction fellowships from the Christopher Isherwood Foundation. Sarah Waters new novel, The Night Watch, has been shortlist for the Orange Prize for Fiction. Short story author Alice Munro will receive the MacDowell Medal in August for her outstanding contribution to the arts. The short list for Britain’s new National Short Story Prize includes “Men of Ireland,” a story by 77-year old legend William Trevor. The winner recieves £15,000.

Lambda Literary Update: The Lambda Literary awards will be Thursday May 18. The reception will begin at 6:00 pm, ceremonies at 7:00 pm, and a post-reception party at 9:30 p.m. Location is the Human Rights Campaign Headquarters, 1640 Rhode Island Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036-3278.

Open calls: Alyson Books is collecting stories for Best Date Ever: True Stories That Celebrate Gay Relationships and its lesbian counterpart. Deadline is July 31, 2006. Stories should be sent to Editor Rob Knight is looking for stories for Shifting Again, an anthology about “shape shifters,” and Eternal Darkness, an anthology about vampires, both for Torquere Press. Deadline is June 1, 2006. Stories can be submitted to Author C. Bard Cole has morphed his Six Bricks Press into an online quarterly journal, Six Little Things, each issue with a new theme. Check out the Web site for more details. The summer 2006 issue of cyberzine Hand-Tooth-Nail will focus on alternate images, voices and representations of “Queerness and Masculinity.” Check out the Web site,, for more details. Chroma, the popular British queer literary journal, is launching an international Queer Writing Competition. Categories are Short Story, Poetry, and a TransFabulous Award. Deadline is September 10, 2006. For more details, visit the Web site Zeus, a new national gay men’s magazine is looking for freelance writers. Email for more details. And Velvet Mafia is looking for a few good young men. Writers 35 and under will be the focus of the e-zine’s 21st issue. Submissions must be received before October 1st, 2006 at

Royal Rumble: Reuters reported that two sets of parents filed a lawsuit on in April against the town of Lexington, Massachusetts and its public school system after a teacher read King & King, a gay-themed fairy tale, to a classroom of about 20 children, most of whom were 7 years old, without notifying the parents first. The lawsuit also charges that the school broke a 1996 Massachusetts law requiring that parents be notified of sex education lessons. King & King, written by two Dutch women, Linda de Haan and Stern Nijland, and published in 2002 by Berkley California publisher Tricycle Press, tells the story of a crown prince who rejects a bevy of beautiful princesses, rebuffing each potential mate until falling in love with a prince. The two marry, sealing the union with a kiss, and live happily ever after. King & King was ranked eighth among the top 10 books people wanted removed from libraries in 2004, according to the American Library Association. Complaints about the 32-page book first surfaced in 2004 in North Carolina. The book has sold about 15,000 copies in the United States. A sequel, King, King and Family, about a royal gay family, was published two years later. Paul Ash, the superintendent of schools for Lexington, said that reading King & King was not intended as sex education but as a way to educate children about the world in which they live, especially in Massachusetts, the only U.S. state in which gay and lesbian couples can legally wed. It was read during a lesson about different types of weddings. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. district court in Boston, alleges violations of the federal civil rights of the two sets of parents, David and Tonia Parker and Rob and Robin Wirthlin. It also accuses the town and school officials of violating the Massachusetts civil rights code and the state’s parental notification law, according to the parents’ attorney, Boston law firm Denner Associates. The dispute erupted when Robin Wirthlin complained to the school’s principal after her 7-year-old son told her about the reading last month. She then turned to the conservative Massachusetts-based advocacy group Parents Rights Coalition. David Parker has been at odds with the town’s school system since he was arrested a year ago for trespassing when he refused to leave school grounds until authorities promised to excuse his son from classroom discussions on same-sex parents. His son, who at the time was about 5 years old, had brought home a “diversity book bag” that included the book Who’s in a Family? The book includes pictures of same-sex parents along with other types of families.

Passages: Elizabeth Maguire, a publisher of noted wit and passion who in a 25-year career worked with historians, theologians, and other nonfiction authors, died April 8, 2006, of ovarian cancer. She was 47. She is survived by her partner, Karen Wolny. Born in the Bronx on Dec. 12, 1958, and raised in Harrison, NY, she earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Harvard in 1980. Since 2002, Maguire had served as publisher of Basic Books, an imprint of Perseus, after previously working at numerous publishers including Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Addison Wesley Longman, and the Free Press. A champion of African-American nonfiction, she was also responsible for publishing many gay authors, including historian George Chauncey. She was also the author a novel, Thinner, Blonder, Whiter, published by Carroll & Graf in 2002.

Gerard Reve, considered one of the Dutch postwar literary greats, died April 8, 2006. He was 82. Reve, whose full name was Gerard Kornelis van het Reve, published his first novel, De Avonden (The Evenings), in 1947, about a disaffected office worker. Reve’s controversial books Op Weg Naar Het Einde (Approaching the End, 1963) and Nader tot U (Nearer to Thee, 1966) dealt openly with the author’s homosexuality and his conversion to Roman Catholicism. Nader tot U sparked controversy because Reve wrote about having sex with God, who appeared to him in the guise of a donkey. He was prosecuted for blasphemy, but cleared in 1968. He published many autobiographical books that were often a mixture of letters and novels. He won top literary honors, including the P. C. Hooft Prize in 1968 and the Prize of Dutch Letters in 2001. His books have been translated into French, German, English and several Eastern European languages. Reve, who had Alzheimer’s disease, spent his final two years in a nursing home in Belgium.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

April Publishing Notes

The buzz: Michael Connor is the new editor of Insightout Book club. Judy Weider has stepped down as the editorial director of LPI Media Inc, parent company of The Advocate. Lloyd Fan as stepped in as CEO of Triangle Multi-Media Limited and Q Television Network, taking over from founder Frank Olsen. Harper’s magazine is drawing the wrath of AIDS researchers and activists for an article by Celia Farber in its March 2006 issue that gives credence to the theories that HIV does not cause AIDS. After surviving Katrina, writer Jamie Joy Gatto and her boyfriend Ben are getting married later this year. Edwin Blair auctioned first-edition books, handwritten manuscripts, and letters by Beat Generation writers Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, and Charles Bukowski and raised $225,000 in San Francisco to benefit his friend and fellow Big Easy residents Gypsy Lou Webb and her husband Jon, who published some of Bukowski’s early works. The New York Public Library purchased the 11,000-page personal archive of author William S. Burroughs for its Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection, which also houses Jack Kerouac’s literary and personal archive. Patricia Highsmith is the subject of a multimedia exhibition at the Swiss National Library in Bern, Switzerland. Suspect Thoughts Press, the “archipelago of misfit books,” is in the process of launching several new imprints, including She Devil Press and a future children’s imprint, Suspect Tots. Some Men, playwright Terrence McNally’s new musically tinged comedy-drama about the current state of gay America, begins previews in Philadelphia May 12, at the Philadelphia Theatre Company. Plans are afoot to bring the 1980 disco film Xanadu to Broadway as a stage musical in spring 2007. Playwright Douglas Carter Beane is putting together the libretto, and the musical will use the John Farrar–Jeff Lynne songs from the movie. Director Christopher Ashley hopes to have an out-of-town tryout up and running this fall. A Very Serious Person, co-written and directed by playwright and performer Charles Busch, will premiere at the fifth annual Tribeca Film Festival in April. The film is about a young boy obsessed with show tunes and vintage Hollywood. Producing duo Neil Meron and Craig Zeron are eying a film version of Going All the Way about baseball player Billy Bean. The Weinstein Company has optioned the movie rights to several stories by New York Times reporter Warren St. John on his revelations of JT Leroy literary hoax.

Brokeback Backlash: Yes, it failed to get Best Picture Oscar trophy. While author Annie Proulx wrote of her disappointment in The Guardian and fans chipped in more than $24,000 to buy a full-page thank you ad in Daily Variety, actor Randy Quaid filed a $10 million lawsuit saying that he was the victim of a “movie-laundering” scheme by the studio division behind the movie. The night before the Oscar loss, the film was named Best Picture by the Independent Spirit Awards. The movie also receieved top honors at the recent GLAAD Media Awards.

Kudos: On the long list for Britain’s Orange Prize is Sarah Waters’s latest novel, The Night Watch. Lorrie Moore, who has written a few terrific gay-themed short stories in her career, was elected to membership of The American Academy of Arts and Letters. Alan Bennett won the Reader’s Digest Author of the Year at the British Book Awards. Geoff Ryman’s novel Air: Or, Have Not Have won the James Tiptree Jr. Award, which honors science fiction and fantasy works that explore and expand gender roles. Ryman is the author of numerous award-winning books, including 253, or Tube Theatre.

Open calls: Author Greg Herren is editing an anthology of queer themed science fiction titled Distant Horizons, to be published by Positronic Press in the summer of 2007. Deadline for submissions is June 1, 2006. No electronic submissions will be accepted. A printed copy of the short story should be sent to: 5500 Prytania Street #215, New Orleans, LA 70115. For more details, query Greg at Editor Michael Luongo is looking for submissions of gay travel erotica for Between the Palms II. E-mail for more details. Deadline is May 30, 2006. The deadline for the annual Gival Press Oscar Wilde Poetry Award for the best GLBT single poem in any style or length is June 27, 2006. Poems should be submitted with a separate cover sheet with name, address, telephone, and email address. Judging is done anonymously. The award carries a $100.00 prize. Reading fee is $5.00 per poem. For complete guidelines and details, e-mail or visit: The winner is usually announced on or before September 1, 2006. And a new online literary journal, Wild About Oscar, is looking for submissions. E-mail for more details.

In Memoriam: Warner, Seven Stories, Beacon Press, The Carl Brandon Society, Writers House, and the Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame have jointly created the Octavia E. Butler Memorial Scholarship Fund to honor the science fiction writer who died in February. The fund will “enable writers of colors to attend on of the Clarion writing workshops where Ms. Butler got her start. ” It has been established to honor and affirm her legacy by providing the same opportunity and experience Ms. Butler had to guture generations of emerging writers of color. The first Octavia E. Butler Memorial Scholarship will be awarded in 2007. More details of the application process will be announced later this year at

Books for Katrina Victims: The New Orleans Public Library is asking for any and all hardcover and paperback books for people of all ages in an effort to restock the shelves after the devastations of Hurricane Katrina. The library staff will assess which titles to designate for its collections. The rest will be distributed to destitute families or sold for library fundraising. If you would like to contribute, please send your books to: Rica A. Trigs, Public Relations, New Orleans Public Library, 219 Loyola Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70112. If you tell the post office that they are for the library in New Orleans, they will give you the library rate which is slightly less than the book rate. For more information, visit and .

Passages: Nick Hornack, also know as the gay author Alexander Renault, died in February, 2006 as a result of injuries sustained in a car accident. He was 38 years old. Writing and editing as Alexander Renault, Hornack published work in a variety of genres from pet magazines to feminist works, and had short stories and interviews featured on a number of Web sites, including Mind Caviar, Ophelia’s Muse, Scarlet Letters, and Velvet Mafia. He was also the editor of the anthology Walking Higher: Gay Men Write about the Deaths of their Mothers, which he published as a print-on-demand book after it was turned down by several publishing houses. He had a long career in the mental health field and lived in rural Pennsylvania with his partner and their two dogs.