Lez Liberty Lit: Just Say No to a Coronavirus Novel


Hi and welcome to this week’s Lez Liberty Lit!

Anti-racist bookclubs are plaguing Black people’s DMs, writes Rachel Charlene Lewis at Bitch:

“Now, as white readers make reading anti-racist books a part of their praxis, and take it upon themselves to lead virtual book clubs, Black people are finding themselves carrying another burden from, largely, white people: a flood of requests from white people who don’t know what books to assign or which books to read. Instead of reading the massive number of lists available online, they demand that the Black people they know recommend books to them. In some cases, these are their Black friends, but in many others, they’re making demands of Black people they’re only assuming they’re friends with, like coworkers or people they follow on social media. It’s almost as if some white people have decided that the solution to their own deep-down racism is to follow as many Black people as possible—and then demand to be educated. So what does this new phenomenon mean for the Black people who’ve been doing this work for a long time, and simply want to scroll mindlessly through their DMs without being bombarded with these random requests?”

Greed does not have to define our relationship to land.

“I categorize myself broadly—I am, at different times, a multidisciplinary artist, a literary writer, a journalist. But rewriting the canon and filling in gaps in the narrative of American Blackness is the work I love most,” writes Willow Curry at LitHub on the relationship between art and anti-racist activism.

Women are changing the face of African publishing.

“The quota taught me to let go, to jump in, to start writing, and to keep writing until I was done,” writes Emily Temple on how internet writing translates into a debut novel. Read an excerpt of her novel, The Lightness, at LitHub.

Support these 50 Black-owned bookstores.

“The Little Engine that Could is a capitalist nightmare.”

“TThere’s a huge spotlight on Black literature at the moment – for obvious and essential reasons. These spotlights on Black literature have appeared before, yet they rarely look beyond the confines of politically-charged, racially-orientated, or complex academic accounts of the Black experience, when it comes to mainstream trends at least. This sometimes leads to outdated or one-dimensional perceptions of what it means to be Black, both historically and today,” writes Frankie Reddin at Harper’s Bazaar.

America’s cop problem is also a gun problem.

What does it take to write a good sex scene?

First person plural? Why not?

Here is a brief feminist history of bike riding.

Here’s how to make a zine.

Half of the proceeds from the sale of Autostraddle alum Sarah Fonseca’s new novella, Sea Queens, will go to SAGE to support programming for trans and queer elders. Check it out!

Please reconsider your “timely” slash undercooked coronavirus novel.

Read these books this summer. Read the most-anticipated debuts of the second half of 2020. Read these five Italian short story collections. Read these books about asexuality. Read these books about living between languages. Read these queer mythology books.

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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.