Winner, Lambda Literary Award, LGBT Anthologies
Winner, Independent Publisher Award (GOLD), Gay/Lesbian
In this amazing, wide-ranging anthology of non-fiction essays, contributors write intimate and honest first-person accounts of queer (gay/lesbian/bisexual/trans) experience: from coming out to "passing" as straight, to the devastation of meth addiction, to growing old to living proud. These are the stories of contemporary queer life--and by definition, are funny, sad, hopeful, and truthful. Representing a diversity of genders, ages, races, and orientations, and edited by two acclaimed writers and anthologists (who between them have written or edited almost 100 books), First Person Queer depicts the diversity, the complexity, and the excitement of contemporary GLBTQ life.
Contributors include S. Bear Bergman (Butch is a Noun), Kate Bornstein (Gender Outlaw), Sharon Bridgforth (The Bull-Jean Stories), Ivan E. Coyote (Bow Grip), Katherine V. Forrest (Curious Wine), Daniel Gawthrop (The Rice Queen Diaries), George K. Ilsley (ManBug), Nalo Hopkinson (The New Moon's Arms), Josh Kilmer-Purcell (I Am Not Myself These Days: A Memoir), Tim Miller (Body Blows, Shirts and Skin), Achy Obejas (Memory Mambo), Stan Persky (Buddy's), Simon Sheppard (Kinkorama).
This collection is refreshing because of the diversity of experiences represented.... First Person Queer is humorous at times, painful at others, and extremely honest all the while. Though there is no singular, exclusionary 'queer experience,' these essays all complement each other to show the qualitative experiences as a member of a marginalized group.
The collection winningly celebrates differences rooted in a variety of ways to the mutable boundaries of sexuality and gender.... Whether read in a couple of sittings or savored essay by essay, this is an eye-opening vista on diversity.
This wonderful collection of 40 essays manages to hit the jackpot each time. Editors Richard Labonte and Lawrence Schimel leaned on some excellent writers well represented in GLBT literature (Kate Bornstein, Tim Miller, Katherine V. Forrest, D. Travers Scott, Achy Obejas), but they've introduced new names (at least to the casual writer) as well, and all are terrifically engaging.
-Michael Bronski, The Guide
Richard Labonte and Lawrence Schimel have gathered a remarkable number of personal narratives that document the incredible diversity of experiences, backgrounds, personal histories and yes, sexual orientations and gender identities, that all resonate with the word queer. The stories create a strong a vibrant community where multiple experiences can cohabit and flourish.... Recommended for both public and academic libraries.
-GLBT Roundtable Newsletter (American Library Association)
It's remarkable that every voice in this anthology is personable.... The eloquence of spirit in each essay draws readers into understanding different points of view.
-Outwords (Winnipeg, MB)
These short pieces show enormous range of difference.... First Person Queer is not a book to be read through, rather it is one to be dipped into and relished for what it echoes with the individual reader and what provides them with moments of insight.