The Letter Q: a guest post from the editor, and a giveaway!
By Lauren on June 18th, 2012
We’re celebrating Pride Month here at OOM. Friday I posted a list of great Scholastic books that explore a variety of points of view on the LGBTQ experience. Today I want to delve a little further into one of those titles.
The Letter Q: Queer Writers’ Notes to Their Younger Selves is an anthology containing 64 award-winning LGBT author and illustrators’ letters to their younger selves (recommended for ages 14 and up). Publishers Weekly calls the book “thoughtful, humorous, and moving.” Sarah Moon, the editor of The Letter Q: Queer Writers’ Notes to Their Younger Selves stopped by OOM with a poignant post on why she embarked on such an ambitious project.
Take it away, Sarah…
Happy summer, everyone! I just finished my eighth year in the classroom. In May, I had the indescribable pleasure of watching The Letter Q appear on bookshelves. This book started because over the last eight years, I’ve seen the kids, the ones we all see, who tug at our hearts for different reasons, they remind us of our friends, our siblings, ourselves. I have witnessed them struggle, as they must, and wished I could do something. I often wished a note could magically appear in their backpacks, one that said, listen, I’ve been there. You’re not crazy, this feels hard because this is hard, here, try this, it might make you feel a little better.
I knew better than to tell them that it would be okay, that they just needed to hang on until they left home, or went to college or fell in love. We all know that teenagers barely have the patience to hang on until summer vacation, much less to another decade in the future. I was describing these kids to my partner, the ones who’ve stuck with me over the years, the shy boys who ate lunch in my room every day to avoid the cafeteria and have some extra time around books, the angry girl with the smart mouth and the big heart, the kid who was trying to figure out, first, if he was gay, and second, if and how he should tell his parents. I told her that I wished there was a book for them. I told her, too, about how I wished I had been able to provide them with magic letters that would serve them well, guide them, help them through. But a letter’s not a book, I lamented. No, she said, but a book of letters is.
And so, The Letter Q was born.
We compiled a list of people we would want to participate. High on that list was the founder of The Trevor Project, James Lecesne. He not only agreed to write a piece, but offered to partner with me, to be the contributing editor. We then began the whirlwind ride of asking every queer writer we admired to do us a favor. Then, we asked them to ask all of their friends for a favor. The results were stunning, immediate and full of hope. We hope they help.
If you want more, authors from the book are doing select events. See below for details!
- Thursday, June 28th at 7:00 PM: WordBrooklyn (126 Franklin St., Brooklyn, New York)
- Thursday, June 28th at 7:00 PM: Books Inc. (2275 Market St., San Francisco, California)
– Sarah Moon
Giveaway: Still want more? We’re doing a giveaway! Leave a comment below (by 5pm ET Friday, June 22) and be entered to win a copy of the book. We’ll pick three (3) lucky winners! You must be a 18 years old and a US resident to qualify. Click here for official rules.