I was convinced it was impossible for me not to be a writer, but to be a writer who was a woman—because I was a transwoman, and for most of my life I did not meet or see anyone like myself, anyone who lived in silent agony at the knowledge that one’s true self lived behind a bolted door in the heart, and I did not think I could ever live my life as a woman, until I left the island and began to learn more.
Posts Tagged: trans
Over at the New Yorker, Stephen Burt reviews Ariel Schrag’s Adam, a graphic novel about a straight man who finds himself in the midst of New York’s queer scene. Almost as interesting as the novel’s contents is its publicity: where trans characters were once cast as charity cases, psychopaths, anything but simply human, now Adam is being marketed as mainstream literary fiction:
…it tries not to lose readers unfamiliar with the complicated labels and the sometimes surprising bodies of the gender-variant people Adam meets: he’s learning about them, and from them, and (the novel assumes) so are we.
The “parts” that are covered up by our underpants are private. It’s no one’s business to ask about them or talk about them. (That goes for the parents, too!) If someone tells you she is a girl, she’s a girl. If he tells you he’s a boy, he’s a boy.
“Whereas in the past, most trans books were non-fiction, either how-to or memoir books, we’re starting to see novels and short fiction coming from trans authors in North America,” explains Leger. “It’s a great time to be a trans person who loves books!”
Next covers the surge in literature by transgender writers and the places that publish them.
I used to believe that collapsing the Venn diagram-space between the public and private self was the best way to ensure authenticity....more