Fabulous news, folks! Author Jane Hoppen joined us today to talk about her recent Goldie win. Jane is the author of In Between (the Goldie winner) and The Man Who Was Not. There’s a brief bio at the bottom of the page, but if that doesn’t sate your need to learn everything you can about Jane, you can learn more about her online in these fabulous places: WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER
And, because Jane is the baddest of the badasses, she’s giving away a book today! Winner’s choice from In Between (ebook or paperback) and The Man Who Was Not (ebook only). Leave a comment in the space below (including your email address where it asks for it) and that will enter you in the drawing. I’ll pick a winner on Friday, August 1st, then email and post the winner here at the top of this blog. Good luck!
For now, though, stay right here and read her guest blog! Woo!
by Jane Hoppen
Well, the 2014 Golden Crown Literary Society Conference, a wonderful gathering of lesbian writers from virtually everywhere, has come and gone—until next year. This year I am very humbled to be among the many wonderful writers who won a Goldie. The entire time that I was writing my first novel, In Between, my only focus was on completing it. When I did finally finish with the writing, the next challenge was searching for a publisher, with the novel eventually finding a home with Bold Strokes Books. Throughout that process, I never really actualized the reading aspect of the novel, the fact that people would actually be reading it, and when the book came out in December 2013, I definitely had a bit of an anxiety attack. I was very unsure about the reception the book might receive, given that the main topic behind the book, intersexuality, is a hidden and under-represented one. Happily, the anxiety eventually passed when I found that readers were truly embracing the book, and the main character Sophie, who was born an intersexual in the early 1960s, and then surgically made into as much of a female as possible just days after her birth. Many people that I would never have imagined even reading a book such as In Between surprised me. Not only did they read it, but they enjoyed it and its many messages. The novel then being a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award and a winner of a Goldie was just like double icing on the cake.
In winning a Goldie, I am particularly humbled to be a part of the history of lesbian writers. I feel as if I am surrounded by greatness, being listed with writers like Rebekkah Weatherspoon, Yvonne Heidt, Radclyffe, Kim Baldwin, Xenia Alexiou, D. Jackson Leigh, Heather Blackmore, and Amy Dunne. The battle of lesbian writers fighting to establish a platform for their words within the publishing industry is a long drawn one, stretching back to the days of Radclyffe Hall, who published The Well of Loneliness in 1928. Think about it. That was 86 years ago, and ever since then lesbian writers have been pursuing their publishing goals. I am grateful to all of the literary heroines who persevered over the years, the decades, to ensure that lesbian voices continue to be heard—Ann Bannon, Nancy Garden, Lee Lynch, Rita Mae Brown, Adrienne Rich, Gertrude Stein, May Sarton, and so many others.
When I look at the many names on the list of lesbian writers, I am inspired to write more words and to generate more ideas. My novella, The Man Who Was Not, which came out in June 2014 as an e-book, is about an ancestor of Sophie’s, Stephen Hyde, who also was born an intersexual in the mid-1800s. And now that I have told that story, it is time to move on to the next!
I didn’t make it to the GCLS Conference this year, but I can tell from perusing the photos posted by Andi Marquette and R.G. Emanuelle that a good time was had by all, and I’ll definitely try to make it to New Orleans next year to share in all of the literary goodness!
Jane Hoppen was raised in Wisconsin, and has lived in the New York City area for more than 20 years, currently residing in Brooklyn, NY. She has been a writer of fiction and nonfiction for more than two decades, and her stories have been published in various literary magazines. Her novel, In Between (December 2013), and her novella, The Man Who Was Not (June 2014) were both published by Bold Strokes Books.