Monday, May 30, 2011

GLAAD Comic Book Award Winners and Nominees

Run by GLAAD Media Awards (the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), the Outstanding Comic Book category began in 1992 (3rd annual media awards), skipped a few years, then awarded single awards until 1999, when the nominees where also named.

 While the GLAAD awards are unique among the GLBT awards in having a dedicated comic book category, most of the nominees tend to be mainstream comics. While this is good if you want to read about the X-Men or other superheroes, these are mainly 'straight' comics that happen to be gay friendly, and the more obscure and independent gay graphic novels are missed.

Unfortunately, coverage and documentation of the GLAAD awards online has been poor, especially for the older awards. Due to the nature of the media, awards are given to single issues during the year, so the same series can appear several times over the years. Where possible and relevant, I have identified specific issues and what part of the GLBTQ spectrum it includes. Otherwise, only the most recent award is linked, to stop the repeats getting too confusing.

Monday, May 23, 2011

YA Book Review: Huntress by Malinda Lo

Her award-winning first novel, Ash, was widely (and deservedly) recommended as a teen fantasy. However, her second book, Huntress, is at least twice as good, and fixes many of the problems of Ash.

Close up on the cover art of Huntress (illustrated by Alison Impey)

The people are suffering from famine and random wandering fay-monsters, and two girls (Kaede and Taisin) are sent on a quest to find the Fairy Queen and ask for help with the weather. Rather than a Celtic-Cinderella story, Huntress is a mix of English and Asian fairytales. I fully expect it to be nominated for as many awards as Ash was, and probably win a fair few of them.

Monday, May 16, 2011

12th Annual Lambda Literary Awards 1999

12th Annual Lambda Literary Award Winners and Finalists

 The Lambda Awards by year:
1988 | 1989 | 1990 | 1991 1992 |1993 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 
2002 | 2003 | 2004 |2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010

  • Lesbian
    •  Biography/ Autobiography, Fiction, Mystery,  Poetry, Studies
  • General LGBT
    • Fiction Anthology, Non-fiction Anthology, Children's/ Young Adult, Drama, Erotica, Humour, Photography/ Visual Arts, Religion/ Spirituality, Science fiction/ Fantasy/ Horror
  • Gay Men's
    •  Biography/ Autobiography, Fiction, Mystery,  Poetry, Studies
  • Transgender
  • Small Press Awards

Lesbian Fiction:

Lesbian Mystery:

Lesbian Poetry:

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Award-winning Lesbian Romance & Erotica Books

Because it can be a pain wading through lists of yearly award winners, here is a quicklist of all the lesbian romance and lesbian erotica winners and finalists from the Lambda Awards (for now - this may be extended to other awards, but the Lambdas actually have categories for romance and erotica!).

Award-winning Lesbian Young Adult Books

This is a round-up of all the award winning books about lesbians for teens for the Lambda Literary Awards (I'll add other awards later, but the Lambdas cover the Children's /YA category the longest and most consistently).

There's a list of children's picture books for lesbian families here.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

YA Author: Nancy Garden

Nancy Garden is best known for her classic young adult lesbian romance, Annie on My Mind. She writes mainly young adult books in an attempt to deal with discrimination in a variety of topics. 
Annie on My Mind
Annie on My Mind

She has won several awards including lifetime achievement awards for her work in writing young adult books, and most of her books appear on 'best of/recommended reading' book lists published by library organisations.

Lifetime awards
  • Margaret A. Edwards Award (2003)
  • Katahdin Award for Lifetime Achievement (2005)
  • Induction into the Saints and Sinners Hall of Fame (2007)

She also received the Robert B. Downs Intellectual Freedom Award for her attempts to fight censorship, and the legal fight to keep Annie on My Mind in school libraries in Kansas (in short, it was donated, burned, banned and reinstated).

YA Book Review: Annie On My Mind by Nancy Garden

Annie on My Mind by Nancy Garden
- an old and well-read library copy!
Annie On My Mind is a sweet coming out and coming of age story that has landed fairly solidly on the lists of young adult classics. It was published in 1982 and has received a number of 'best book' awards from the ALA and Young Adult library organisations. It's also solidly in the middle of the top 100 banned/censored/challenged books lists through the decades! Amazingly, it has never been out of print since being published.

It's dated fairly well, although the fact that homosexuality is an issue - the issue - does date it. Otherwise, apart from a few place names, and a possibly historical trend for tiny private schools and drugs and violence to be rife in public schools., it doesn't feel thirty years old.

The story is told from inside the head of Liza, a well off, by-the-book seventeen year old in Manhattan, as she tries to write a letter to Annie from college and looks back over the events of that time. Liza's passion is (and always was) for architecture, and she meets Annie in a  museum, drawn by her singing. Annie is a withdrawn and imaginative girl and the two mesh perfectly, slipping easily into the roles of knight and lady and discovering new magic in the gardens and museums of New York together.

Monday, May 9, 2011

13th Annual Lambda Literary Award 2000

13th Annual Lambda Literary Award Winners and Finalists

The Lambda Awards by year:
1988 | 1989 | 1990 | 1991 1992 |1993 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 
2002 | 2003 | 2004 |2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010

2000 Categories:
Overview of yearly categories
  • Lesbian
    • Autobiography/Biography, Fiction, Mystery,  Poetry, Studies
  • General LGBT
    • Fiction Anthology, Non-fiction Anthology, Children's/ Young Adult, Humour, Science fiction/ Fantasy/ Horror, Spirituality/Religion, Visual Arts
  • Gay Men's
    •   Autobiography/Biography, Fiction, Mystery,  Poetry, Studies
  • Transgender
  • Small Press Award

Lesbian Autobiography/Biography

Lesbian Fiction:

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Graphic Novel: Gingerbread Girl by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover

Gingerbread Girl is an upcoming graphic novel and webcomic that features one of those rare creatures - a bisexual.

It is written and illustrated by husband and wife Colleen Coover and Paul Toibin, both professionals who work for Marvel (among various other projects). The artwork is accessible and attractive, although it does look a bit more 'ready to colour' than ideally black and white.

Annah Billips is a self proclaimed tease who loves sushi, girls with afroes, Riesling and travelling. She also possibly lost a sister called Ginger when her parents divorced. Or possibly not - having a mad scientist father who like to mess with people's brains makes reality unreliable and sanity questionable. 

Annah's story is that this sister is a homunculus of sorts, created from the sensory part of her brain, leaving Annah emotionally and tactile deprived, while Ginger feels everything for both of them (...from pain to sex). Alternatively, Ginger could be how Annah dealt with her parents fighting, by projecting all her sensations and emotions into an imaginary sibling. Annah obviously wants to know the truth, and follows a lively quest to discover it and find her lost sister-twin-clone. 

14th Annual Lambda Literary Awards 2001

14th Annual Lambda Literary Award Winners and Finalists

 The Lambda Awards by year:
1988 | 1989 | 1990 | 1991 1992 |1993 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 
2002 | 2003 | 2004 |2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010

  • Lesbian
    • Fiction, Mystery,  Poetry
  • General LGBT
    • Fiction Anthology, Non-fiction Anthology, Autobiography/ Memoir, Biography, Children's/ Young Adult, Erotica, Humour, Romance, Science fiction/ Fantasy/ Horror, Spirituality, LGBT Studies, Visual Arts
  • Gay Men's
    •  Fiction, Mystery,  Poetry
  • Transgender/ Bisexual
  • Small Press Award

Lesbian Fiction:

Friday, May 6, 2011

23rd Annual Lambda Literary Award Winners 2010

The 23rd Annual Lambda Literary Award Winners and Finalists

The Lambda Awards by year:
1988 | 1989 | 1990 | 1991 1992 |1993 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 
2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010

  • Lesbian
    • Debut Fiction, Erotica, Fiction, Memoir/Biography, Mystery, Poetry, Romance
  • Bisexual
    • Fiction, Non-fiction
  • General LGBT
    • Anthology, Children's/ Young Adult, Drama, Non-fiction, Science fiction/ Fantasy/ Horror, LGBT Studies
  • Gay Men's
    • Debut Fiction, Erotica, Fiction, Memoir/Biography, Mystery, Poetry, Romance
  • Transgender
    • Fiction, Non-fiction

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Ann Bannon, Queen of Lesbian Pulp

Odd Girl Out
Beebo BrinkerAnn Bannon was known as the "Queen of Lesbian Pulp" and her lesbian romances are both fascinating historical stories, and fun trashy romance. Following the lives of lesbian women in the 1950s and '60s, her books are both positive and occasionally heartbreaking. The gay characters are real people, and Brannon shows how society affects them - the bar cultures, the drinking, the secrecy.
I Am a Woman

The first book, a surprising hit to the author, was Odd Girl Out, which introduced Laura - a delicate young lesbian who has trouble coping when her lover and college roommate Beth chooses to marry a man.

Women in the Shadows (Lesbian Pulp Fiction)In I Am A Woman ("I am A Woman In Love With a Woman Must Society Reject Me."), Laura flees her abusive home. She leaves for the big city (Greenwich Village, New York) and starts to figure out who she is, and give up on emotional involvement. Eventually, she's introduced by the witty and closeted Jack to the iconic Beebo Brinker, and love and alcolism ensues.

Women in the Shadows is a much more depressing read, following the cracks in Laura and Beebo's increasingly violent relationship, with Laura eventually marrying Jack for the sake of social security and happiness.

While fourth in the series, Beebo Brinker could easily be first - it takes a step back and introduces the famous and charismatic butch girl, Beebo Brinker, on her timid arrival in New York city... of course, she doesn't stay timid long.

Journey to a Woman (Lesbian Pulp Fiction)Finally, there is Journey to a Woman, in which Beth - the original first love of Laura - realises she's miserable and still in love, and decides to seek Laura out. Of course it's not that easy, but after a rocky road of relationships, Beth finally meets... Beebo.

If you're looking for high literature and restraint, you won't find it here - this is classic melodramatic pulp fiction. But it's also a very honest, and valuably historic, view back into the past from a 1950s housewife who dared to write a story of women in love - and show it to a publisher.

While her books predated all the GLBTQ book awards, Ann Bannon was given several commemorative author awards later.
  • The 2008 Pioneer Lambda Literary Award from the Lambda Literary Foundation
  • The 2008 Alice B. Reader’s Appreciation Award
  • The first annual Trailblazer Award, from the Golden Crown Literary Society, 2005The Distinguished Service Award for Faculty Excellence by the Alumni Association of Sacramento State University, April 2005.
  • Inducted into the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival Hall of Fame in 2004.
  • “Pressie” for Best Author of the Year 2003, by the Chicago Free Press.
  • Certificate of Honor by the Board of Supervisors City and County of San Francisco, February 2000.
  • Outstanding, Pioneering Contribution to Lesbian and Gay Writing by Outlook National Lesbian and Gay Quarterly, March 1990.