Sunday, 1 June 2014

#OutWriters Like Me

Just in time for Pride Month, a pretty cool publisher called Cleis Press has spearheaded this thingamabobby called...


Actually, it's a hashtag, so I really should say #OutWriters.

What are OutWriters? They're peeps like me.  Thanks for asking.  And who am I?  I'm a queer writer, writing about queer things... like a young woman whose turnstile-hopping incurs the wrath of the subway system (what?) or a guy who comes out live on national TV (yup) or... and this is the best one, by far... a girl whose only friend is an evil doll that starts setting fires when she falls for a blonde in a blue bikini.

The point of the OutWriters twitter hashtag is to tell the world why we do what we do.  Why write LGBTQ characters?

I place queer characters front and centre in my YA fiction because I always hoped to find books about people like me in my school library, growing up.  And I never, never did.  That's why, when my novel Tiffany and Tiger's Eye came out in February, the first thing I did was start writing to library systems across the world and asking them to please buy my book. I'm a pretty shy person and not at all a cold-calling self-promotion type writer, but I steeled my... oh, there's a word for this... girded my loins?  I don't remember it right now... I steeled SOMETHING and just did it.

(On a side note, if you want to ensure your library carries quality fiction featuring queer characters, I've posted instructions here: Please have a look!)

You can see what other OutWriters are saying by searching the hashtag on Twitter.  Here's a taste:

Why LGBT YA? When you're a kid, you're looking for examples of kids like you. Not every princess is blonde. Or white. Or a girl.

We can be the heroes of stories. We can have happy ever afters. Books matter.

Not only do I write what I know, I write what I would want to read.

We All Belong. Offering strength/comfort/humor from all P.O.V.'s. Because too many good people have been lost from the lack.

You can find out more about this whole OutWriters thingybopper at:

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