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Literary Collections Essays

A Family by Any Other Name

Exploring Queer Relationships

edited by Bruce Gillespie

TouchWood Editions
Initial publish date
Apr 2014
Essays, Alternative Family, Gay & Lesbian
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2014
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2014
    List Price

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Finalist for a Lambda Literary Award for best LGBT Anthology
Winner of a 2015 Silver Independent Publisher Book Award

At no other time in history have lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) relationships and families been more visible or numerous. A Family by Any Other Name recognizes and celebrates this advance by exploring what “family” means to people today. The anthology includes a wide range of perspectives on queer relationships and families—there are stories on coming out, same-sex marriage, adopting, having biological kids, polyamorous relationships, families without kids, divorce, and dealing with the death of a spouse, as well as essays by straight writers about having a gay parent or child. These personal essays are by turns funny, provocative, and intelligent, but all are moving and honest. Including writers from across North America, this collection offers honest and moving real-life stories about relationships and creating families in the twenty-first century.

The fifth book in a series of books about the twenty-first-century family, A Family by Any Other Name follows How to Expect What You’re Not Expecting, Somebody’s Child, Nobody’s Mother, and Nobody’s Father, all essay collections that challenge readers to re-examine traditional definitions of “family.”

About the author

Bruce Gillespie is an award-winning Canadian writer and editor and an assistant professor in the journalism program at Wilfrid Laurier University's Brantford campus. He has worked for Canadian Business and MoneySense, and his writing has appeared in a number of magazines and newspapers, including Canadian Geographic, Chatelaine, Financial Post Business Magazine, Applied Arts, Quill & Quire, and the National Post. He has received four honourable mentions at the National Magazine Awards and a Best Consumer Feature in the Rogers Media Best Of Awards in 2001. Bruce is the editor of A Family by Any Other Name: Exploring Queer Relationships and was co-editor of the two anthologies Somebody's Child: Stories About Adoption and Nobody's Father: Life Without Kids. He was recently appointed editor-in-chief of, a hub for news, information, and commentary about Canadian journalism. Visit Bruce online at and follow him on Twitter at @bgillesp.

Bruce Gillespie's profile page


  • Winner, IPPY Award for Gay / Lesbian / Bi / Trans Non-Fiction (Silver)
  • Short-listed, Lambda Literary Award for an LGBT Anthology

Editorial Reviews

"The collection comes from a sometimes brutal but consistently affirming place of honesty, which makes it both fascinating and essential reading." —Curve Magazine

"The stories are beautiful, without shying away from intelligent critique. They are by turns tragic and joyful." —Bunch Family

A Family by Any Other Name awarded the Silver Medal for Gay / Lesbian / Bi / Trans Non-Fiction by the 2015 Independent Publisher (IPPY) Awards.

"The average quality of the essays here is remarkably high. I like to think people who identify as queer take it extra seriously when we set out to tell our stories, but it must also be true that Gillespie is a fine editor who knows how to inspire his contributors." —The Coastal Spectator

"The rigid expectation of what a "family" should look like is something many of us find stifling as we move toward creating our own. Nowhere is this struggle more keenly felt than in the queer community, which faces social and legal hurdles that make the pursuit of family difficult, impossible, or even dangerous . . . This book is about what is possible in the face of what you're told is not." —Quill & Quire Magazine

"There’s an exquisite hopefulness to this book, despite the difficulties many of its contributors have endured. Marriage, parenting, family-building, are presented as fresh and filled with sweetness." —Body Language Journal

Selected as a finalist for the 27th annual Lambda Literary Awars for best LGBT Anthology.

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