Wednesday, April 30, 2008

May Publishing Notes

The buzz: PlanetOut, Inc. announced that it was selling its magazine and book publishing businesses -- including The Advocate, Out, and Alyson Books -- to Regent Releasing for $6 million. Regent is an affiliate of the Here! cable network. Film director Stephen Daldry, who arrives on Broadway with a musical version of his film Billy Elliot, has expressed interest in adapting another one of his films, The Hours, based on Michael Cunningham’s novel, into an opera. Musician Rufus Wainwright has been commissioned to write an opera by the New York Metropolitan Opera. Ang Lee and Focus Features are planning a feature film based on the gay-themed memoir Taking Woodstock, by Elliot Tiber with Tom Monte. A paperback tie in with the movie, expected in 2009, will also coincide with the 40th anniversary of Woodstock. Tony-winner (Take Me Out) Richard Greenberg’s new play, The Injured Party, debuted last month in Los Angeles at South Coast Repertory. Harper Perennial will publish a new collection of short fiction by Dennis Cooper, Ugly Man, in the Summer of 2009. Knopf will publish Emma Donoghue's Lesbian Plots: From Geoffrey Chaucer to Sarah Waters. Ballantine will publish Rita Mae Brown's Pure Gold, a memoir about the animals in the author’s life. Performance artist Terry Galloway's Mean Little Deaf Queer, about being gay and disabled, will be published by Beacon Press in the Spring of 2009. Beacon will also publish Kate Clinton’s untitled book project in the Spring of 2009. Patrick Conlon's The Essential Hospital Handbook will be published by Yale University Press in the Spring of 2009. Atlantic Books will publish Edmund White's biography Rimbaud: The Double Life of a Rebel. Bowen Press, the young adult division of HarperCollins, will publish Tom Dolby's Secret Society, about a group of Manhattan teens who are inducted into an elite secret society headquartered on the Upper East Side, in the Summer of 2009. Editors Vince Liaguno and Chad Helder are revealing the table of contents of their new queer-themed horror anthology Unspeakable Horror: From the Shadows of the Closet one day at a time during the month of May on their Web site for Dark Scribe Magazine. King & King, a children’s picture book with positive gay role models, was withdrawn from two British elementary schools under pressure from Muslim parents. Activist and author Larry Kramer sent a critical letter to the head of the literary organization PEN American Center blasting the association for featuring few LGBT authors at an international literature festival it hosted. Kramer also took aim at PEN Board member Michael Cunningham. Rob Weisbach is stepping down as President and CEO of Weinstein Books to pursue other publishing opportunities. Keith Kahla, who has been at St. Martin’s Press for 20 years, has been promoted to Executive Editor. Longtime New Yorker Charles Flowers is relocating to Los Angeles along with establishing a west coast beachhead of the Lambda Literary Foundation. Playwright Robert Patrick is honoring the life of Joe Cino, owner of former Caffe Cino, with a solid bronze plaque to be mounted on the site of the Caffe, now the home of Po Restaurant at 31 Cornelia Street in New York. Fifty years ago Joe Cino rented a storefront in New York City’s Greenwich Village in order to open a coffee house, which eventually morphed into what is now regarded as the birthplace of the Off Off Broadway movement and the American Gay Theatre Movement. Rapture Café & Books in the East Village in New York closed April 24, 2008. The store will continue to host reading events at other locations. Owners Jim Deva and Bruce Smyth of Little Sister’s Book & Art Emporium in Vancouver, who challenged Canada’s Customs agents and censorship laws, has put the bookstore up for sale. Michael Walker and the DREAMWalker Group are now producing a regular newsletter of interest to LGBT writers and is open for submissions and suggestions. Visit the Web site at for more details. The New York Public Library now has a LGBT blog at

Things to add to your calendar: The 20th Lambda Literary Awards ceremony will be held May 29, 2008 in West Hollywood, on the eve of Book Expo’s opening weekend in Los Angeles. Michael Corbett will be master of ceremonies and guest presenters include Bernard Cooper, Felice Picano, Torie Osborn, Michael Nava, Lillian Faderman, Chad Allen, Peter Paige, Denise Penn, Anne Stockwell, and Calpernia. Guest performers will be the Gay Men’s Chorus, Tim Miller, and the Gay Mafia. ** Gayfest NYC, a festival of new plays and musicals, will run from May 14 to June 15, 2008. ** The annual Saints and Sinners Literary Festival in New Orleans will be May 8 – 11, 2008. ** The Second Tuesday Lecture Series on May 13 at the LGBT Center in New York City will feature writers Perry Brass, Laura Antoniou and Michael Luongo discussing "The Literature of Porn."

Kudos: Martin Duberman was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Biography for The Worlds of Lincoln Kirstein and Alex Ross was a finalist in the General Nonfiction category for The Rest Is Noise. Making the New York Public Library’s list of 25 books to remember from 2007 were Hotel de Dream by Edmund White and The Indian Clerk by David Leavitt. Maureen Brady, Joan Larkin, Stephen McCauley, and Tim Miller will be inducted into the Saints and Sinners Hall of Fame at this year’s Literary Festival in New Orleans. Also to be announced are the winners of the Jim Duggins Outstanding Mid-Career Novelists’ Prize – an unrestricted cash grant of $5,000 established by Jim Duggins. This year’s honorees are Michelle Tea and Ronald L. Donaghe. Gaylaxicon 2009 will be October 9-11, 2009 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Margaret Weis, Andy Mangels, and Lawrence Schimel will be the guests of honor.

Publishing Triangle Nods: Joan Larkin was presented The Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry for My Body. There was a tie for The Thom Gunn Award for Gay Male Poetry. The winners were Steve Fellner for Blind Date with Cavafy and Daniel Hall for Under Sleep . Myriam Gurba received The Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction for Dahlia Season. The Ferro Grumley Awards for LGBT Fiction were presented to Peter Cameron for Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You and Ali Liebegott for The IHOP Papers. Janet Malcolm was presented The Judy Grahn Award for Lesbian Nonfiction for Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice. Michael Rowe received The Randy Shilts Award for Gay Nonfiction for Other Men's Sons. The Publishing Triangle Leadership Award was presented to Richard Labonté and Carol Seajay. Katherine V. Forrest received The Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Open Calls: is casting a new game show titled My Gay BFF, about the friendships between straight women and their gay best friends. Visit the Web site for more details and audition information.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

April Publishing Notes

The buzz: Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City is becoming a theatrical musical. Avenue Q book writer Jeff Whitty and Scissor Sisters bandmates Jason Sellards and John Garden are penning the musical, due on Broadway during the 2009-10 season. Gayfest NYC will present their opening gala benefit event on April 14, 2008 with Leslie Jordan’s one man act, My Trip Down the Pink Carpet. Proceeds will go to the Harvey Milk High School. BBC is turning Simon Doonan’s memoir, Nasty: My Family and Other Glamorous Varmints, into the television show Beautiful People. The PEN American Center is trying to get Sebastian Horsley allowed on U.S. soil. The British writer, who wrote the memoir Dandy in the Underworld, was barred from entering the country on the grounds of "moral turpitude" after landing in Newark on March 18. Author John Rechy, author of the legendary City of Night, marks fifty years with Grove Press with About My Life and the Kept Woman. Harmony Books will publish Wade Rouse’s The Faux Thoreau: A City Boy Battles Blizzards, Wrestles Raccons and Cuts Cable in a Quest for his Modern-Day Walden Pond. Author Lewis DeSimone has launched a new blog: Bookazine has acquired the assets of the book distribution division of Publishers Distributing Company, part of the PlanetOut media company. Among the publishers affected by the sale are Bruno Gmunder Verlag, Starbooks Press, Colt Studio, and Douglas Simonson Press. Julia Pastore has started a new lesbian reading group. Contact her at if interested in joining.

Poetry in Ireland Continues: reported that The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) in Ireland said that works by Cathal O’Searcaigh, a poet accused of sexually exploiting young men in Nepal, will continue to be taught in schools. Education Minister Mary Hanafin has been advised by the council: "On balance, the Council considered that its original position on the artistic merit and suitability for study of the work of Cathal O'Searcaigh should stand." O’Searcaigh, whose Irish language works are taught at Leaving Certificate, the equivalent of A Level, had been accused of the "sexual exploitation and grooming" of 16 year old Nepalese boys. Allegations about the poet's relationship with the young boys surfaced after the screening of Fairytale of Kathmandu, a documentary on Mr Searcaigh's charitable work in Nepal made by a former friend of his. The poet wrote a letter denouncing the accusations, saying: "If my gay lifestyle and relationships in Nepal have offended anyone, I am sorry. But to suggest that I in any way coerced or preyed upon these young men is untrue and distasteful. My relationships in Nepal have always been open and loving and above board." Opposition education spokesman Brian Hayes challenged Ms Hanafin on the "appropriateness or otherwise" of having the work on the current syllabus. The minister - who recently had to defend her actions in helping Mr Searcaigh secure a visa to Ireland for a Nepalese friend - said she was "shocked and appalled" by the allegations.

Kudos: David Leavitt was named a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award for his novel, The Indian Clerk. Leslea Newman has been selected Poet Laureate of Northhampton, Massachusetts.

And The Nominees Are: Katharine Forrest will be presented with the Publishing Triangle’s Bill Whitehead Lifetime Achievement Award. The awards -- including the Ferro-Grumley Fiction Awards, The Shilts-Grahn Nonfiction Awards, The Lorde-Gunn Poetry Awards, The Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction, and The Publishing Triangle Leadership Award -- will be announced on April 28, 2008 at the Tishman Auditorium at the New School in Greenwich Village, New York City. For a list of the nominated books, visit the Publishing Triangle’s Web site.

The 20th Lambda Literary Awards will be presented Thursday, May 29, 2008 at the Silver Screen Theater, Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, CA. Ann Bannon, Malcolm Boyd, and Mark Thompson will receive Pioneer Awards. Nominations in the 21 literary categories can be found on the Foundation’s Web site.

Open Calls: Limp Wrist, a new literary journal, is accepting fiction and poetry submissions. The first issue will be this spring. More details can be found at ** Seven Kitchens Press is accepting submissions for the Robin Becker Chapbook Prize. Deadline is May 15, 2008. More details can be found at

Passages: Sir Arthur C. Clarke died March 18, 2008 at the age of 90 in Sri Lanka. He was the author of more than 100 books, among them Childhood’s End and The Sentinel, which was made into the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. Clarke was never open about his homosexuality. In his later years, he was fond of saying, "At my age, now I'm just a little bit cheerful." With the stipulation that they not be published until 50 years after his death, his "Clarkives," a vast collection of private writings, is expected to reveal his homosexuality, even though it's a widely accepted fact among the author's fans.