Lez Liberty Lit: Permission To Not Finish That Book You Hate


Hi and welcome to this week’s Lez Liberty Lit! It’s okay to not finish that book you started and hate and that you don’t want to read any more and that you feel like you have to finish. Just put it down. Slowly. Now close it. Now take your placeholding finger away. There. That’s better. Now go read something good.

Things About Queer Books (And Other Books Relevant To Your Interests)

Roxane Gay will be the first black woman to write a Marvel comic book because somehow that hasn’t happened already (???). She’s teaming up with Ta-Nehisi Coates in the Black Panther universe and will focus on queer black women:

“Her story, written with Mr. Coates, will follow Ayo and Aneka, two lovers who are former members of the Dora Milaje, the Black Panther’s female security force. ‘The opportunity to write black women and queer black women into the Marvel universe, there’s no saying no to that,’ [Gay] said.”

These queer books set at summer camp are relevant to your interests and include Lumberjanes, and some other books.

Translated fiction is having a moment. In the Guardian, Rachel Cooke notes: “There are, quite simply, a lot of great translated books out there now, their covers appetising, their introductions informative, their translations (mostly) works of art in their own right.”

Here is a Buffy the Vampire Slayer adult coloring book.

shutterstock_287437913Library fines can suck.

What smut did you secretly read as a kid?

Some suggestions for reading more books as an adult. You could also try reading and walking. Or, here are the best places to read a book in Los Angeles.

The Chicago Manual of Style Q+A is a delight.

Christina Crosby’s essay collection A Body, Undone: Living On After Great Pain is primarily an examination of the queer body, writes Barrie Jean Borich at the LARB:

“Lost in the contemporary civil rights context of mainstream LGBTQ politics is the greatest gift queers bring to human discourse, which is primary attention to the personal and political urgency of embodied desire. Our stories, over and over again, illustrate the ways we humans require access to the joys of the body if we are to enjoy a livable and liberated life. What then does a feminist and queer theorist, committed to reading and living through understanding formed by felt pleasures, do with the story of the broken self? Crosby’s choice is to pummel directly into the ambiguity of her present condition.”

Did you read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child? That’s nice. For everyone else: let’s talk about pretending it doesn’t exist in the comments!

You will always have more books than space.

Lumberjanes at Klub Deer by Shannon Watters and Casey Pietsch in the Boom!Box 2015 Mixtape

From the Boom!Box 2015 Mixtape. Yes that is Klub Deer.

Book Things To Do In Person

8 August, New York: Contributors to Sinister Wisdom 101: Variations, a “special volume of the 40-year old lesbian art and literary journal Sinister Wisdom, explores the varied meanings of lesbian feminism in today’s world,” will read at the Dixon Place Lounge (161 Chrystie Place), 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

19 August, Ottawa: Ottawa Capital Pride is holding a one day comic convention with entirely queer content (101 Lyon St. N), 11 am to 11 pm.

4 September, Melbourne: As part of the Melbourne 2016 Writers Festival there will be a queer literary salon (Bella Union), 5:30 p.m.

Know of a queer event with literary merit? Send it to us! The Liberty Lit is bi-weekly.

Books! They are really great. You just won’t believe how great they are. You may think that the Internet’s great, but that’s just peanuts compared to books. In Lez Liberty Lit, we talk about queer books and literary shit that’s happening that you should probably care about.

The name “Liberty Lit” was inspired by the short-lived literary journal produced by Angela Chase at Liberty High School in 1994.

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Ryan Yates

Ryan Yates was the NSFW Editor (2013–2018) and Literary Editor for Autostraddle.com, with bylines in Nylon, Refinery29, The Toast, Bitch, The Daily Beast, Jezebel, and elsewhere. They live in Los Angeles and also on twitter and instagram.

Ryan has written 1142 articles for us.


  1. oh man… i remember the first erotic novel i found as a teenager and feeling the exact same way! i love the idea that that’s how good kids rebel in adolesence, bc i definitely wasnt doing anything else but AP English homework

  2. Library fines lol..I’ve been blocked since 2011 cuz I owe £50. It’s too easy to run up fines. If you are me lol. The librarian said she didn’t like looking at the fine on the computer, she found it distressing. Another guy I know never uses the library due to a fine from 1984 or sumn. A jubilee would make sense cuz I would start using the library again, providing the opportunity to rack up further fines, increasing their revenue.

  3. I don’t know how I feel about getting rid of library fines. I’ve definitely racked up more than my fair share of overdue fees, but I always liked to think that when I paid them I was supporting my library. And I still think folks need an incentive to return their books, especially when those books have a lot of holds on them.

  4. I know we’re supposed to be pretending HP8 doesn’t exist, but I really liked it! Apparently everyone else hated it but I was just so happy to be back in that universe I didn’t see the flaws. Plus, am I the only one shipping Albus and Scorpius?

  5. A queer literary salon sounds like an amazing dream to me, who’s always been fascinated with 18th and 19th century European women’s literary salons. Too bad it’s all the way in Australia!

    That Roxane Gay and Ta-Nehisi Coates comic about queer black women also sounds like a fucking dream!!

  6. I am pretending really hard that The Book That Shall Not Be Named does not exist and honestly also that JKR never said another word about Harry Potter after the 7th book was published.

    That includes her revelation that Dumbledore was gay. I am uninterested in your off-the-page gestures, Rowling.

  7. I’ve never read a lez liberty lit post (even tho I’ve ready autostraddle for years). it always intimidated me how many there were! And like I missed out of this cool book club that started years early. Thanks for giving me permission to not finish this book and making me feel not so scared of this lez liberty lit thing y’all do so often.

  8. I’m a librarian, and I strongly believe library fines are immoral and antithetical to the purpose of libraries. Hearing people say they can’t use the library because of fees breaks my heart – especially because the people who can’t afford to pay the fine are the people who need the library most.

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