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The Letter Q: Queer Writers' Notes to their Younger Selves Hardcover – May 1, 2012
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A thoughtful, humorous, and moving collection of letters and comics Read together, the letters become a powerful refrain.” -- Publishers Weekly
With its repeated exhortations to relax more and worry less, this book might be a life-saver for someand could function as an author list, as well, for teens wanting to read more about People Like Us.” -- Horn Book
About the Author
James Lecesne is an actor, writer, and activist. His Academy Award-winning short film, "Trevor," inspired the founding of The Trevor Project (www.thetrevorproject.org).
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And that is how this anthology of writings by some of our most important and impressive writers of the day came about. In this anthology, sixty-four award-winning authors and illustrators such as Michael Cunningham, Amy Bloom, Jacqueline, Woodson, Terrence McNally, Gregory Maguire, David Levithan, and Armistead Maupin, make imaginative journeys into their pasts, telling their younger selves what they would have liked to know then about their lives as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender people. Through stories, in pictures, with bracing honesty, these are words of love, messages of understanding, reasons to hold on for the better future ahead. They will tell you things about your favorite authors that you never knew before. And they will tell you about yourself.
The question was asked "If I knew then what I know now..." If you could write a letter to your younger self, what would it say? In The Letter Q, today's best queer authors offer hard-earned, heartfelt advice about growing up, coming out and coming into their own to the people who need it most: themselves, as kids and teens. 'In these inspiring pages, Christopher Rice warns his younger self to avoid the siren song of the club scene, while Amy Bloom tells herself not to shun one-night stands. Graphic novelists Maurice Vellekoop and Paige Braddock provide pictures as powerful as the words. Michael Cunningham boils it all down to "Worry less. Use what the world has given you." It's not a time machine, but it's the next best thing.
Hopefully this book finds its way into the hands of our youth as well as teachers and parents and maybe, just maybe, as a result we will note a softening of antipathies toward those once considered to be `misbegotten' socially. Grady Harp, June 12
This isn't a novel at all. It's a collection of letters by queer authors to their younger selves. The book was produced because every young person identifying as queer has a right to know that their situation of feel lost, alone or misunderstood isn't unique - there's someone out there that can understand.
I enjoyed it because it had so many emanations with my teenage years, and it's always pleasing to read about other success stories.
Another thing is that I often read short story collections to find new authors whose writing style agrees with me. Those are just letters, but the authors hint enough about themselves that I can tentatively pick ones that I'd buy books to try.
I initially picked up this novel because one of my favourite authors, Julie Anne Peters, has a contribution in it. I'd also already encountered Erika Moen from her comic, DAR.
I had fun trying to pick whether the writer was male or female in each case where it wasn't immediately obvious. A weird thing to do when the authors are all queer and any sexuality or gender could be presented. I didn't do this in a judgemental way, just in an interested way.
If you're queer, you're questioning, you just want to understand more about what queer people go through, this could be a good novel for you to read.