Friday, August 29, 2008

September Publishing Notes

The buzz: This fall, Haiduk Press will publish Patrick M. Chapman’s Thou Shall Not Love -What Evangelicals Really Say to Gays, a critique of evangelical views on a variety of subjects, including gay marriage. Lethe Press is in talks with Lawrence Schimel's A Midsummers Night Press to partner in the release of both Best Gay Poetry 2008 and Best Lesbian Poetry 2008 before the end of fall. Lethe Press is also publishing John McNeill’s Sex as God Intended it to Be, Craig Gidney’s Sea, Swallow Me and Other Stories, the anthology Time Well Bent: Queer Alternate History, and the Press is reissuing Jeff Mann’s memoir Edge: Travels of a Leatherbear. Arcade will publish Daniel Harris's Celebrity: A Star-Studded Look at Fame and the Limelight, in July 2009. Alyson will publish a new collection of short stories by Jim Grimsley, Jesus Is Sending You This Message, with an introduction by Dorothy Allison. Sarah Schulman’s next novel will be The Mere Future, which will be published in 2009. Harper will publish playwright, screenwriter, and novelist Paul Rudnick's untitled collection of humorous essays, including his humorous New Yorker pieces. Modernist Press will publish Nine Hundred & Sixty-Nine: West Hollywood Stories in September and celebrate the launch of the book at the West Hollywood Bookfair on Sunday September 28th. Patricia Nell Warren wrote the intro to the collection of gay stories, which features short fiction by Max Pierce, Felice Picano, Timothy State, and others. The reading at the Book Fair is from 4:50 pm to 5:30 pm on the Robertson Stage. More details can be found here. Freaks Read, a literary salon which features gay and erotica writers, is a free event that happens on the last Wednesday of each month at Nowhere (322 E. 14th St. between First and Second Avenues) in Manhattan. Join the moderated "nowherenyc" Yahoo group to receive future announcements. Writers interested in participating can send a story sample to Charlie Vazquez at with Freaks Read as the subject. Perry Brass and Bob Cabell have produced a series of podcasts called Naked Books, about books that "show all and hide nothing" when it comes to genuine feelings and a closeness to life. Among the new LGBT collections at the NY Public Library are the backfiles of the magazine Pinups from photographer and editor Christopher Schulz. The Library is also working on acquiring a complete backfile of HX and Next magazines, a collection of Japanese erotica, and a historic drag performance collection. M. Christian will teach an erotica writing class on October 12th in downtown San Francisco. More details can be found by writing him at The next annual Saints and Sinners Literary Festival will be May 14 - 17, 2009 in New Orleans. Participants lined up include Jess Wells, Radclyffe, Michael Thomas Ford, and Ali Liebegott. The memorial video produced by Lambda Literary can be found on YouTube here. Rhiannon Argo blogs about the recent Lambda young writers retreat on the new Invert(e) blog site. The blog is the brainchild of the Suspect Thoughts team of Greg Wharton and Ian Philips. Invert(e) is also a new literary journal from the ST Press. Donations are down at White Crane and the organization and the magazine has a call out for financial assitance. Visit to see the complete listing of everything White Crane does and to make a tax-deductible contribution. The DreamWalker Group has established a BuyDirect Page which sells books directly from the Web site. Rich Goscicki, author of Mirror Reversal, is currently featured. The Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library has acquired the archive of American photographer Robert Giard as part of the Yale Collection of American Literature. Giard, who died in 2002, was known for his portraits of gay and lesbian writers. Bong, a 350-page book about Nguyen Van Dung, a gay man who lives in Ha Noi, was recently published in Vietman. “Bong,” is Vietnamese slang for a homosexual. The book was written by two local journalists who taped more than 200 hours of interviews with Dung. Another book about a gay man, Pham Thanh Trung, will soon be published. Afdhere Jama, the editor of the gay Muslim magazine Huriyah, has released a book about LGBT people in the Islamic World titled Illegal Citizens: Queer lives in the Muslim World, published by Salaam Press, which follows the lives of 33 people in 22 countries including Nigeria, Lebanon, Indonesia, Bosnia, China, India, Israel, and Ukraine. Jama was born in Somalia. He moved to the USA after civil war broke out in his native country. The New York Times reported that Rufus Wainwright has dropped plans to write a musical for the Metropolitan Opera over concerns about the libretto and performance dates. Wainwright wanted his opera, Prima Dona, commissioned by the Met, to be in French, and the production was not slated until 2014. The musical will now premiere next July at the Manchester International Festival in England. Craig Lucas has also been commissioned by the Met and his libretto, with music by Nico Muhly, is expected to be workshopped soon. Wig Out! will be the season opener at the Vineyard Theater will feature the downtown drag performer Daniel T. Boothe, aka Sweetie. The new play by Tarell Alvin McCraney is about competition among drag queens. James Franco will play the young Allen Ginsberg in a film by Rob Epstein. And E! television reported that "a source close to club DJ and Lohan pal Samantha Ronson" is "certainly telling friends she's planning to write a book.”

Also on the horizon: In addition to the titles mentioned above that Lethe Press will publish in the forthcoming months, the Press will also publish my collection Still Dancing: New and Selected Stories. This collection brings together twenty of my stories about the impact of AIDS on the gay community which have been written over the last three decades. Along with ten stories from my first collection Dancing on the Moon, are ten newly selected stories. And for this collection I’ve also chosen stories that revolve around gay New Yorkers—those lost, those surviving, those displaced, those undaunted, and those who became expatriates. Still Dancing’s pub date is scheduled for World AIDS Day, December 1, 2008.

Searching for friends of James Voss: British historian Helen Graham is seeking friends of James Voss, a writer who died of AIDS in the mid-1980s. Graham is working on film and book projects about gay Finnish-American International Brigader and poet William Aalto who died in New York in 1958 while in his early forties. Foss, who knew Aalto during this period, was in his twenties. In the mid-1980s, shortly before he died of AIDS, Foss wrote an evocative biographical sketch of Aalto which remained unpublished but was deposited in a New York history archive and with writer Donald Windham. Foss may have also worked for MIT and his last known residence in the 1980s was on 86th Street in Brooklyn. For further info and queries, Graham can be contacted at

Kudos: Philip Hensher’s The Northern Clemency made the longlist for the Man Booker Prize. ** The Golden Crown Literary Society winners have been announced. A full list can be found at the Web site. ** Press Pass Q reported that Fay Jacobs has been named a winner in the annual National Federation of Press Women Communications Contest. She received first place for her book Fried & True: Tales from Rehoboth Beach, in the category of non-fiction humor. The award will be presented at the group’s annual conference to be held this year in Idaho Falls, Idaho, in September. ** Winners of the Arch and Bruce Brown Foundation’s 2007 awards were: Robert Askins of New York, NY for Clean Living, a one-act play; Diana Star Helmer & Thomas S. Owens of Perry, IA for Morty's Mother Marched, a children's story book; and Tracy Wynn of Concord, MA for Mrs. Somebody Somebody, a short story.

Open Calls: The deadline for the Arch and Bruce Brown Foundation’s Playwriting Competition is November 30, 2008. All works must present the gay and lesbian lifestyle in a positive manner and be based on, or directly inspired by, a historic person, culture, work of art, or event. For further submission information, visit the Foundation’s Web site at ** The Saints and Sinners Literary Festival, in association with the Marigny Theatre Corporation and the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival, is sponsoring their third annual playwriting contest. The winning play will premier the weekend of the Festival, May 14-17, 2009. There is a $10 fee for every play submitted. Participants can enter more than once. Submission instructions can be found on the Web site. ** Applications are being accepted for the 2008 James Duggins Mid-Career Awards. Nominations are open through October 1, 2008. The awards, in their third year, recognize and promote LGBT mid-career novelists of extraordinary talent and service to the LGBT community. They are made possible by James Duggins, PhD, a retired educator who taught history at San Francisco State University. Two annual cash awards of $5,000 each are made to one man and one woman. Eligibility is open to any author who has written and published at least three novels, or at least two novels and substantial additional literary work, including poems, short stories, or essays. Further details and nomination instructions can be found here: ** The deadline for the 2008–09 Queer Foundation High School Seniors English Essay Contest is February 28, 2009. This year’s theme is Pink Ink ("We write not only about different things; we also write differently"—Brecht.) For contest rules, judging criteria, and an application form, visit the Web site.** Chip Capelli will be reading for a forthcoming Lethe Press gay men’s erotica anthology tentatively entitled Gemini: Twice A Man's Pleasure. As part of a new Zodiac-inspired line of gay erotica, all submissions should address a theme inspired by the specific sign: in this case, Gemini. Stories should be between 2,000 and 6000 words. Submissions will be read from September 2, 2008 through January 2, 2009 and may be sent to: Gemini, PO Box 18070, Philadelphia PA 19147-0070. Email queries and other communication may be made to ** Editor Joseph R.G. DeMarco will be reading for a forthcoming Lethe Press gay men's anthology tentatively entitled A Study in Lavender: Queering Holmes. All stories must be both gay-themed and mysteries set in the Sherlock Holmes mythos, however the character of Sherlock Holmes need not be the focus. Submissions should be between 1,000 words and 8,000 words. Submissions will be read from January 1, 2009 through March 30, 2009. Queries/Submissions to: ** Editors Sacchi Green and Rakelle Valencia are seeking lesbian cowboy erotica for an anthology to be published by Cleis Press. Deadline is October 31, 2008. Word length is 2000-5000 words. This anthology is a follow up to Rode Hard, Put Away Wet, assembled by the same editors for Suspect Thoughts Press in 2005. Submit manuscripts as Word or RTF attachments to Editor Ron Jackson Suresha is seeking stories for Bearotica 3: More Hairy Beefy Macho Fiction. Deadline is November 1, 2008. Preferred length: 2500-3500 words. Submission and guideline details can be found at:

Passages: Del Martin, the pioneering lesbian rights activist, died August 27, 2008 with her wife, Phyllis Lyon by her bedside. Martin died at a San Francisco hospital two weeks after a broken arm exacerbated her existing health problems, according to Kate Kendell, executive director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. Martin and Lyon were partners for 55 years. Co-founders in the 1950s of the Daughters of Bilitis, the first national lesbian organization in the United States, they battled homophobia in the National Organization for Women in the 1960s; founded the Lyon-Martin Health Services clinics for lesbians in the 1970s; and in the new millennium, became the first gay couple to be married in San Francisco - twice. Their books Lesbian/Woman and Lesbian Love and Liberation are classics in lesbian literature. In 2003, Joan Biren immortalized their amazing lives in her award-winning documentary No Secret Anymore: the Times of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon. Martin and Lyon exchanged vows at San Francisco City Hall on June 16, the first day same-sex couples could legally wed in California, after being together for more than half a century. Mayor Gavin Newsom, who officiated the wedding, singled them out to be the first gay couple to be declared "spouses for life" in the city in recognition of their long relationship and their status as pioneers of the gay rights movement.