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Publishing Triangle Honors Best LGBT Writing of 2015

The 28th annual Publishing Triangle Awards were presented on April 21, 2016, at a gala ceremony held at the Tishman Auditorium of the New School, co-hosted with Ferro-Grumley Literary Awards and the New School Creative Writing Program, with support from Curtis Brown Ltd.

5shot
(l to r): Carol Rosenfeld, Michelangelo Signorile, Marcia M. Gallo, Barney Frank, and Trent Duffy.

The Publishing Triangle, the association of lesbians and gay men in publishing, began honoring a LGBT writer for his or her body of work a few months after the organization was founded in 1988, and has now partnered with the Ferro-Grumley Literary Awards to present an impressive array of awards each spring.


The Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBT Fiction was established in 1988 to recognize, promote excellence in, and give greater access to fiction writing from lesbian and gay points of view. The award, which has widened to embrace bisexuals and the transgendered, comes with an honorarium of $1000, as well as a residency abroad (see story below). The award was presented by Stephen Greco, head of the Ferro-Grumley Literary Awards, and Sarah Van Arsdale, a longtime board member.


Winner:  A Poet of the Invisible World, by Michael Golding (Picador)

Finalists
After the Parade,
by Lori Ostlund (Scribner)
JD
, by Mark Merlis (Terrace Books/University of Wisconsin Press)
A Little Life
, by Hanya Yanagihara (Doubleday)
Under the Udala Trees
, by Chinelo Okparanta (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)


For the first time, The Publishing Triangle presented the Publishing Triangle Award for Trans and Gender-Variant Literature. Carol Rosenfeld, the chair of the group, said, “We are excited about this opportunity to honor important works by trans or gender-variant writers. We hope that our new award will help increase readership for and appreciation of this fast growing field.” Works of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry are eligible for this new prize, which carries a prize of $1000. Christopher Soto, a queer latinx poet, presented the award.

Winner: The Middle Notebookes
, by Nathanaël (Nightboat Books)

Finalists
The Argonauts
, by Maggie Nelson (Graywolf Press)
Debridement
, by Corrina Bain (Great Weather for Media)
Trans/Portraits: Voices from Transgender Communities
, by Jackson Wright Schultz (Dartmouth College Press)


The Publishing Triangle’s Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction was first presented in 2006. This prize, which highlights the Triangle’s ongoing commitment to emerging LGBT talent, carries an honorarium of $1000. Martin Hyatt, one of this year’s judges and a past winner, presented the prize.

Winner: One Hundred Days of Rain
, by Carellin Brooks (BookThug)

Finalists
Blue Talk and Love
, by Mecca Jamilah Sullivan (Riverdale Avenue Books)
Bright Lines
, by Tanwi Nandini Islam (Penguin Books)
Hotel Living
, by Ioannis Pappos (Harper Perennial)


The Publishing Triangle began giving the Shilts-Grahn awards for nonfiction in 1997. Each winner receives $1000. Kevin Simmonds, one of this year’s judges, and Michele Karlsberg, a former chair of the Publishing Triangle, presented these prizes.

The Judy Grahn Award for Lesbian Nonfiction
Winner: “No One Helped”: Kitty Genovese, New York City, and the Myth of Urban Apathy
, by Marcia M. Gallo (Cornell University Press)

Finalists
Dirty River: A Queer Femme of Color Dreaming Her Way Home
, by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (Arsenal Pulp Press)
The Gay Revolution: The Story of the Struggle
, by Lillian Faderman (Simon and Schuster)
Honor Girl
, by Maggie Thrash (Candlewick Press)

The Randy Shilts Award for Gay Nonfiction
Winners [tie]:
Frank: A Life in Politics from the Great Society to Same-Sex Marriage
, by Barney Frank (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
It’s Not Over: Getting Beyond Tolerance, Defeating Homophobia, and Winning True Equality
, by Michelangelo Signorile (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

Finalists
A House in St. John’s Wood: In Search of My Parents
, by Matthew Spender (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Visions and Revisions: Coming of Age in the Age of AIDS
, by Dale Peck (Soho Press)


The Publishing Triangle established its poetry awards in 2001. Joseph O. Legaspi, a judge this year, and Kamilah Aisha Moon, a past finalist for the Audre Lorde Award, presented these awards, which carry a prize of $500 apiece.

The Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry
Winner: Chord
, by Rick Barot (Sarabande Books)

Finalists
Boy with Thorn
, by Rickey Laurentiis (University of Pittsburgh Press)
Farther Traveler
, by Ronaldo V. Wilson (Counterpath Press)
The Spectral Wilderness
, by Oliver Bendorf (Kent State University Press)

The Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry
Winner: No Confession, No Mass
, by Jennifer Perrine (University of Nebraska Press)

Finalists
Bodymap,
by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (Mawenzi House/TSAR)
Fanny Says,
by Nickole Brown (BOA Editions)
Life in a Box Is a Pretty Life,
by Dawn Lundy Martin (Nightboat Books)

Eloise Klein Healy Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

whiteheadEloise Klein Healy is the 2016 recipient of the Publishing Triangle’s Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement, named in honor of the legendary editor of the 1970s and 1980s. She is the author of eight books of poetry—including Passing, a finalist in 2003 for the Publishing Triangle’s Audre Lorde Award—and three spoken word recordings, and she was named the first Poet Laureate of Los Angeles in 2012. The founding chair of the MFA in Creative Writing Program at Antioch University Los Angeles, Healy is now Distinguished Professor of Creative Writing Emerita there. She also directed the Women’s Studies Program at California State University Northridge and taught in the Feminist Studio Workshop at The Woman’s Building in Los Angeles. She is the founding editor of Arktoi Books, an imprint of Red Hen Press specializing in the work of lesbian authors. A Wild Surmise: New & Selected Poems & Recordings is her latest book.

The Bill Whitehead Award is given to a woman in even-numbered years and to a man in odd years, and the winner receives $3000. The novelist Tara Ison presented the award on April 21, 2016, at the New School, to Ms. Healy, who traveled from California with her partner to accept the honor.


Christopher Street Magazine Honored with Leadership Award

Also at its annual awards ceremony on April 21, 2016, the Publishing Triangle presented its special Leadership Award to Christopher Street magazine. Created in 2002, this award recognizes contributions to lesbian and gay literature by those who are not primarily writers, such as editors, agents, librarians, and institutions.

Founded in 1976, just seven years after Stonewall, Christopher Street brought out quality gay and lesbian writing at a time when silence was still expected. The list of writers published during its nineteen years was extraordinary; the remarkable range of talent includes Edmund White, Jane Rule, Randy Shilts, Fran Lebowitz, Ntozake Shange, Quentin Crisp, Adrienne Rich, Martin Duberman, Andrew Holleran, Kate Millett, Samuel Delany, Essex Hemphill, Joanna Russ, and Tim Dlugos.

It also printed work by cartoonists and artists such as Roz Chast, Howard Cruse, Peter Hujar, Nicole Hollander, Mel Odom, George Dureau, and Rick Fiala. And it reviewed books by James Baldwin, Susan Sontag, Larry Kramer, Patrick White, Patricia Nell Warren, Manuel Puig, and many many others.

For its valuable work in creating and encouraging LGBT literature, the Publishing Triangle is presenting this honor, which carries a prize of $500, to Christopher Street. Since the magazine is defunct, the award will go to its founders and editors: Charles Ortleb was the publisher and first editor; Patrick Merla followed as editor; he in turn was succeeded by Tom Steele; Michael Denneny was top advisor. Together these four men, with the help of others—including Paul Baron, Dorianne Beyer, and Rick Fiala—made an invaluable contribution to our community and culture.

Presenting this award were novelist Christopher Bram and Will Schwalbe, a book editor and the author of two works of nonfiction.
csmag
(l to r): Will Schwalbe and Christopher Bram introduced Christopher Street Magazine's Patrick Merla, Tom Steele, and Michael Denneny.

Ferro-Grumley Award Winner Receives Two-Week Residency in Italy

At the Publishing Triangle’s awards ceremony on April 21, 2016, the Ferro-Grumley Literary Awards announced an exciting new joint venture.

From the stage, Stephen Greco, chair of the group, said the group would partner with Art Workshop International (AWI), a respected 36-year-old program based in Assisi, Italy. The winner of this year’s Ferro-Grumley Award, Michael Golding, will be given a two-week residence at AWI’s Italian base.

In Assisi, AWI offers workshops in creative writing, visual arts, Italian language, and culinary arts. AWI has already been opening its doors to writers, and past literary residents include Frank McCourt, Tony Kushner, Grace Paley, Michael Cunningham, Dorothy Allison, Marilyn French, Maxine Hong Kingston. Vivian Gornick, and Philip Lopate. This year’s artist-in-residence is Edmund White.

Mr. Golding will be able to read from his work during his residency, teach a workshop (if desired), and share in AWI’s warmly collegial atmosphere, with culture-loving participants from around the world.

Going forward, the Ferro-Grumley Literary Awards and AWI intend to offer this lovely opportunity to all future winners of the Ferro-Grumley Award. For more information, go to Art Workshop International.

fga
Sarah van Arsdale (l) and Stephen Gre
co (r) with
Ferro-Grumley winner Michael Golding


New Publishing Triangle Residency Award

The writer Anna Sequoia, a longtime member of the Publishing Triangle (and in fact its cochair for a year in the 1990s), has funded a scholarship to enable an author to spend two weeks at the Martha's Vineyard Writers Residency. The Publishing Triangle is delighted to announce that Anna is honoring the Publishing Triangle by naming the award after our group.

The Publishing Triangle residency award will allow an LGBT writer to go Martha’s Vineyard for a two-week period in the spring or fall, with accommodations (but not meals or travel) paid for. The inn where the residency takes place has a fully equipped kitchen for the residents. The months available are April, May, September, and October.
Sequoia has made a commitment to fund this residency for five years. Justen Ahren, the director of the residency, will select the resident to receive the Publishing Triangle residency award, just as he selects all the residents. For more information, see http://writersresidency.com/marthas-vineyard-writers-residency/

Sequoia says, “During the period when I was actively publishing nonfiction books, the Triangle let me feel that I wasn't alone and wasn't a freak. I would like to honor the group and its work by naming this residency for the Triangle.”

The board of the Publishing Triangle is grateful to Anna Sequoia for this honor.

 

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Our LGBT Reading List
Do you love LGBT literature and want to know what to read next? Well, then you've landed on the right web page. The Publishing Triangle asked two distinguished panels of judges to come up with The 100 Best Lesbian and Gay Novels and The 100 Best Lesbian and Gay Nonfiction Books of all time.

We also asked fourteen lesbian book reviewers, booksellers, librarians, and/or authors to name the Most Notable Lesbian Books of 2004.

Also be sure to check out new publications by Publishing Triangle members and books that won 2004 Publishing Triangle Awards.

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For information on LGBT publishing events, visit our Events Calendar page.

Monday, June 13, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.: Join Out Professionals for the national book launch of Love Wins: The Lovers and Lawyers Who Fought the Landmark Case for Marriage Equality. Out Professionals presents Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Debbie Cenziper and key Supreme Court marriage plaintiff Jim Obergefell in conversation with television’s Bradley Jacobs. Subject: “Love Wins” (HarperCollins), the new legal thriller. “You can tell it’s going to make a great movie,” says Bob Woodward (“All the President’s Men”). Being held at the LGBT Center, 208 West 13th Street, between Seventh and Eighth Avenues. Admission:  Nonmember, $20; with guest, $30. OP Member, $10; with guest, $15. Complimentary wine.