Discussion: The L Word

Or, regarding the erasure of the word ‘lesbian’ from YA contemporary literature. I don’t know if you’ve noticed (perhaps you haven’t) that, while the use of some labels to describe sexuality is (wonderfully) on the rise, the use of the label ‘lesbian’ has stagnated, to say the least. So this piece will, hopefully, provide an explanation of sorts of why this shouldn’t be.

A note to start: we’re limiting this discussion to mainstream YA contemporary because that is what’s most likely to get into young lesbians’ hands, especially if they are not so deep into talking about books on the internet.

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Discussion: We Are More Than Our Traumas: History Beyond Stonewall and AIDS

Discussion posts aren’t exactly a regular feature on this blog, to be sure, not least because we generally find ourselves wondering what exactly we can discuss. But today, we do actually have a topic for you.

And it relates to history.

I (Charlotte) made a tweet about 9 days back (here) asking people to read a nonfiction book about LGBT history sometime this month. Really, the reasoning behind it is what spawned this post.

So read on, and let us know what you think!

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Discussion: Goodreads Awards & LGBT Books

As I’m sure you’re aware, the Annual Goodreads Choice Awards just started yesterday. And as you also probably already know, the list of official nominees isn’t the final list of nominees. But it is a start & it was put together just the way it was & as someone who co-runs an LGBT media blog, I wanna talk about it.

We have 20 categories and 15 books nominated in each. Some books are nominated in more than one category so it’s not actually 300 books, but it’s close enough. And how many of those 300 books do you think are LGBT ones? Before you start guessing, though, let me remind you that we have a list of all LGBT releases of the year that we could find & it’s currently over 560 books long.

Below you will find LGBT books from each category. (Not) Surprisingly there are a few with no LGBT nominees but I still numbered the categories as listed on Goodreads. (Also, if you notice I missed any books, please let me know so I can edit the post. I might know a lot but I surely don’t know everything!)

When I told Charlotte I want to write this post, it took her basically no time to decide that another thing we need are LGBT Alternative Choice Awards & she set hard to work to put them together. The categories are pretty much the same, but the nominees are – obviously – all LGBT.

Here’s a google form where you can cast your vote!

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Discussion: Stop Turning Us Into Tragedies

In case you hadn’t realised, it’s LGBT History Month this month! (I know, I know, it looks a little like we hadn’t realised, but just wait til you see the doozy of a rec list Anna has for you later on.) This post was born after I finished a book, went to look it up on Google for whatever reason, and found that it had been turned into a film. But not only had it been turned into a film, it had been turned into a tragic film.

The book, by tragic gay ending standards, was relatively benign. Yes, it was bittersweet and the characters didn’t end up together, but they both survived. The film had obliterated that. So, of course, I got annoyed, said to Anna “hey how do you feel about this as a discussion post” and wrote about a third of it just for the catharsis.

The premise of this post is this: we have enough tragic stories as is without straight people taking what happy stories we’ve written for ourselves and making them tragic in the name of some bullshit historical accuracy. So. Enjoy.

(And don’t forget, we have various rec lists of nonfictionhistorical fictionperiod dramas and historical f/f!)

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Guest Post: Writing Comics with Cait

This is the last of our celebratory guest posts – but not the least! We figured five is a very nice number & were super lucky to get five amazing people to write for us. Today’s post is by Lou. We’ve met on book twitter, which seems to bee the place to meet interesting & talented people, doesn’t it. She’s an aspiring author and believe me, y’all really want her to land a book deal! Meanwhile, you can read a webcomic she cowrites with an illustrator friend. Or follow her on twitter.

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Guest Post: Found Family and LGBT in the Periphery

Charlotte lowkey makes fun of me for this, but if she let me, I probably would turn this blog into a shrine for Kayla. I’m just a big fan of her work, okay guys? And not without reasons, because everything she already published is amazing.

Anyway, I guess it comes as no surprise then that I asked her to write something for Reads Rainbow’s anniversary. And if you’ve read either of her books, you know that found family is a bit of a signature trope for her. So enjoy!

You can follow Kayla Ancrum on twitter (and you should, because she’s hilarious) & read our interview with her for some more content!

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Guest Post: Expanding the Possibilities of Fantasy: LGBTQ Representation in Malinda Lo’s Books

Today I’m very excited to host another dear friend on our blog! I’ve known Amrita for about four years and can honestly tell she’s one of the most talented writers & poets I have ever met. So you can imagine how happy I was when she agreed to write about something close to her heart.

You can find some of Amrita’s writing here or just go ahead and follow her on twitter.

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Guest Post: The Many Coming Outs of Gabriela Martins

We’re here two days after our blog anniversary with another guest post & we’re hoping you are all still in the mood to celebrate with us.

Today, we have an essay by Gabriela Martins. I met her around a year ago, I think, thanks to the book twitter community & being friends with her has been amazing. That’s why I was thrilled when she agreed to writing something for our blog!

You can follow Gabhi on twitter @ gabhimartins or visit her writer’s website: gabrielawrites.com.

And hey, we actually interviewed her a few weeks back!

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Guest Post: I’m Bi so I’m Greedy (For More)

Exactly one year ago today, we started this blog. (Yeah, the time’s flown by for us as well!) And because it’s our first blogiversary, we wanted to do a little thing to celebrate that. So, for the next ten days or so, we’re hosting a series of guest bloggers, to talk about whatever topic they choose (LGBT-related, obviously), and then finishing up with a post by us, as an extra thank you for all the support you’ve shown us.

(Because, in case it wasn’t clear, we wouldn’t be doing this without that support.)

Our first guest is Shri, who blogs over at sunandchai (go follow if you don’t already!) and is on twitter @sunandchai.

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Discussion: Perceptions of Marketing LGBT Books

How publishers market (or don’t market) LGBT books is something me and Anna have complained about a fair bit to each other before. So we thought, why not turn those complaints into a bit of a discussion. As people who aim to promote pretty much every single LGBT book we can find, this is something important to us. We want these books to do well, so the way they often get marketed is… annoying to us in the least.

Before we start, we want to make it absolutely clear that we have nothing to do with publishing in any way. This is just our (often frustrated) perspective as readers and as bloggers.

So, let’s go!

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