Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Exciting News: "The Queer History Project: No Way, They Were Gay?" Lives On... With a New Publisher, Lerner!

It's official!

The book contract is signed, and the deal was announced yesterday in Publishers Weekly!


The deal announcement reads:
Hallie Warshaw at Lerner/Zest has acquired “I'm Here. I'm Queer. What the Hell Do I Read?” blogger Lee Wind's debut middle grade nonfiction book, The Queer History Project: No Way, They Were Gay? The book reveals the surprising and often hidden true stories of men who loved men, women who loved women, and people who lived outside gender boundaries. Publication is set for fall 2020; Marietta Zacker at Gallt & Zacker did the deal for world rights.

I'm excited, and grateful, and want to believe more than anything that this time, my LGBTQ history book that would have totally changed my life had I read it when I was a closeted 11 and 12 and 13 and 14 year old, really will come out and reach readers and change lives for the better!

Really, it would have changed everything had I read it as a closeted 15 and 16 and 17 and 18 and 19 and 20 and 21 and 22 and 23 and 24 and 25 year old, too. I was in the closet for so long! "The Queer History Project: No Way, They Were Gay?" would have changed my life—for the better. It would have helped me be more authentic, sooner. It would have let me know that I was not alone.

Because if we know there were men who loved men in history, and women who loved women in history, and people who lived outside gender boundaries in history, then we'll know we are not alone. We'll know we deserve a place at the table today.

And knowing we have a place at the table today empowers us to imagine a limitless future.

And that's what I want for all the young people—the ones we were, and the ones today.

This book is for them. For you. And yeah, for me, too.

And I can't wait! Dammit, I'm actually tearing up as I write this. Because there are moments in your life that transcend you. When you know you're doing something epic, something groundbreaking. Something that will change our world for the better—even in a small way. But that's how most change starts. And for me, that's this moment.

Thank you to my new and honest and smart and wonderful agent, Marietta Zacker.

Thank you to this book's new publisher at Lerner/Zest Books, Hallie Warshaw, and my editor Ashley Kuehl, and the whole Lerner team for believing in me and this project.

Thank you to my husband, and daughter, for loving me whether or not I have a book deal.

Thank you to my family and friends for cheering me on.

And thank you, my community, for all your support and encouragement on this crazy, crazy adventure in publishing.

The light in me recognizes and celebrates the light in you,
Lee

Monday, June 17, 2019

Order Signed Copies of "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill" From Pages A Bookstore!

I'm thrilled to announce that Pages A Bookstore in Manhattan Beach, California, will be carrying signed copies of "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill" and they're happy to mail them to you!

Me, outside the independent Pages A Bookstore


You can order signed copies online at their website here, or call them at 310-318-0900.

Ten minutes from my day job at IBPA, Pages A Bookstore has become my local bookstore, and they're awesome. They even have a pretty amazing LGBTQ Pride month display up—a whole table-worth of great reads—and I'm so excited that Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill is being welcomed to their carefully curated collection!

Here I am, holding a copy of "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill" in front of their LGBTQ Pride Month Display!


Order your signed copy from Pages A Bookstore today!

My thanks to Kristin, Casey, and the whole Pages A Bookstore team!

The light in me recognizes and acknowledges the light in you,
Lee

Friday, June 14, 2019

I'm Featured In The Lead Story at Books Make A Difference!

This month's headline article is Power and Progress: Diverse Stories, Authentic Voices by Karen Pavlicin-Fragnito.

Wow - there's "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill," among some of my favorite LGBTQ titles for kids and teens!

I'm honored to be included, not just with a generous shout-out to "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill," but also with numerous quotes from my interview with Karen, covering why diversity in books for kids and teens is important, the difference between archetypes and characters, some of my favorite LGBTQ reads for youth, and so much more!

Hey, that's me! Talking to some of the teens who received the crowdfunded donated copies of "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill" at Camp Brave Trails.

The article also features Hannah Ehrlich, marketing and publicity director at Lee & Low Books, and T.S. Ferguson, editor at Jimmy Patterson Books. They're both smart and articulate, and I'm delighted to be in their company.

Some stand-out quotes:

“When we see someone like ourselves in books, it’s powerfully validating,” says Lee Wind, author of Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill. At the same time, “When we step into someone else’s shoes through the magic of reading, and they’re different from us in some way (different gender, or racial background, or ability, or religion, or affective orientation) it helps us have a level of empathy and understanding we didn’t have before we knew them through the book.” —Me!

Hannah challenges fellow publishers and editors to recognize they are all gatekeepers and to approach that authority with responsibility. “Books have power,” she says. “And we choose the books.” —Hannah

“And you should be reading multiple books by multiple authors within those communities, because just like in your own communities, not everyone is the same and one perspective is not going to give you a fully formed idea of what these communities are like. You’re not going to read The Hate U Give and fully understand the black experience, for example. You need to be well-read.” —T.S.


Head over to read the full article here at booksmakeadifference.com - it's a great piece!

I'm grateful to Karen for writing it and including me, and to you, my community, for this opportunity to share.

The light in me recognizes and acknowledges the light in you,

Lee

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Celebrating LGBTQ Pride in Los Angeles! An Album of Prideful Photos...

Went with the husband and teen to Los Angeles Pride this past weekend, and we walked in the parade with a group of gay dads and their kids. Lots of love and support, and some awesome t-shirt messages. So many, that I ran up to about a dozen folks and asked if I could take their photos to share here on the blog.

And now, your glimpse of some strong PRIDE from Los Angeles, 2019:

"The First Pride Was a Riot" — and love the shout out to Marsha P. Johnson!

Rainbow Bear! 
"Make Racists Afraid Again" — made me laugh, and pretty true.



"Why be racist, sexist, homophobic, or transphobic when you could just be quiet?" Yaaaas!

"Proud Daddy and Proud Papi — says it all!"

This sign was brilliant: "Free Hug No Matter Who You Are You're Loved."

HUMAN—yes, we all are!

"Gays do it Better" — loved this one, with hat ribbon and belt buckle tying it all up!

"Make America GAY Again" — a nice counterpoint to our current president's anti-gay, anti-women, anti-environment, anti-everything I seem to hold dear policies and statements and tweets. Yeah, let's make America GAY Again. Proudly Gay.

This couple made me so happy. "Free Hug: Proud Dad" and "Free Hug: Proud Mom" - they were representing, and I couldn't cheer them on enough!

"All for Love and Love for All" - such a great message!

"Love is a Human Right" — Yes!

"Protect Trans Kids" — Yes!

Thank you, Los Angeles Pride!

Monday, June 10, 2019

"Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill" Wins the National Indie Excellence Award for Best Book LGBTQ For Children & Young Adults

Hurray!

Look! From the winners page—it's "Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill!"
Another lovely accolade for my debut YA novel. I'm so grateful more people will find out about the story now!

Check out the super-fun listing of all the winners of the National Indie Excellence Awards here.

Want to know the story-behind-the-story of Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill? Check out the 5 minute video I did here.

The light in me recognizes and acknowledges the light in you,
Lee

Friday, June 7, 2019

Schooled (Book 2), Audio Assault (Book 3), Netminder (Book 4) - The Gay Teen Spy Thriller Series "Codename: Winger"!

The first book in this series is "Tracker Hacker." Here's the rest of the series by Jeff Adams...


A Very Winger Christmas (Codename: Winger Book 1.5) - A Free Short Story

Christmas is a time for family and friends, but teenage secret agent Theo Reese must solve a mysterious hack before he can enjoy Reese family holiday traditions and deliver a gift to his boyfriend, Eddie. Can he avert an international incident and save Christmas before time runs out?




Schooled

Secret agent and teenage computer genius Theo Reese lives in two separate worlds—and they’re about to collide.

Theo’s high school computer science club is gearing up for a competition, and Theo agrees to lend his knowledge of cybersecurity to help them win. The covert agency he works for also needs his talents. An encrypted key that allows access to the nation’s electrical grid has been stolen. Theo’s skills are crucial in its recovery before disaster strikes.

When the file shows up at the competition as one of those to be decoded, Theo must find a way to be both an average high school student and Winger, his secret identity. The file must be secured—all while protecting his teammates from those who will use any means necessary to get the file for themselves.



Audio Assault

Theo Reese is just like any other seventeen-year-old—with one small exception.

This summer all he wants is to spend time with his boyfriend, Eddie, and work on his MIT research project. His parents have other plans.

An old friend needs the help of Theo’s family. Oliver Glenwood is an ’80s music star who runs his own label. His wife and his daughter, Sofia, now a chart topper herself, are the targets of kidnappers. Oliver hopes they can eliminate whoever is behind the threat.

When Theo uncovers an even more insidious plot, the covert agency the Reeses work for, Tactical Operational Support, swoops into action.

Song files have been modified to steal personal data from devices and emit a tone that drives listeners into a homicidal rage. Theo and his parents race against the clock to stop this mysterious enemy from releasing the music on an unsuspecting populace and causing worldwide chaos.

Just when Theo thinks the mission couldn’t be more complicated, Eddie shows up in New York looking to hang out with his boyfriend.

No one ever said being a teenage secret agent would be easy.


Netminder
After a summer that was nothing like he’d planned, teenage secret agent Theo Reese is back to school and to work with Tactical Operational Support’s IT department. His world turns upside down arriving home from hockey practice to a major security breach.

On the run, he soon discovers the TOS network is down and he’s cut off.

As he uses his unique skills to find out what’s happened, Theo discovers the evil agency Blackbird is responsible. A nemesis from Theo’s first field mission is out for him and will stop at nothing to force Theo to help Blackbird realize their goal of taking global control of the internet.

Getting help from some unexpected sources, Theo must stop the internet takeover while trying to keep those closest to him safe.

Add your review of "A Very Winger Christmas," "Schooled," "Audio Assault," and/or "Netminder" in comments!

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Actor Michael D. Cohen Comes Out in TIME as Being Part of the Trans Community



He plays Schwoz in Nickelodeon's longest running live-action sitcom, Henry Danger. He's instantly recognizable to a whole generation of young people. And in this Time Magazine article by Katy Steinmetz , Michael D. Cohen just came out as having, nearly two decades ago, transitioned his body from female to male to match the male gender that he always identified as being.

"I identify as male, and I am proud that I have had a transgender experience – a transgender journey." —Michael D. Cohen

And Michael is SO funny.

When asked about how it’s been having the name Michael Cohen lately, for instance, he says that he’s had it: “I’m thinking of changing my name to Paul Manafort.”

Towards making people understand that Trans people are just people like everyone else, this is a big deal.

I'm so glad Michael has come out so publicly, I can't wait to see his one-man show, “4 Cubits Make a Man,” and I hope you'll join me in cheering him on!

The light in me recognizes and acknowledges the light in you,

Lee

Monday, June 3, 2019

I'm the Featured Author for June at BookBaby's BookShop!

This is really cool!

Scroll to the bottom of the BookBaby BookShop landing page and... Hey, that's me!

I'm excited that, especially this month of LGBTQ Pride, more people will have the chance to see, hear about, and hopefully read Queer as a Five-Dollar Bill!

It's all about empowering LGBTQ teens and their allies—which includes YOU!—and I'm very grateful for this opportunity. I hope you'll check it out!

The light in me recognizes and acknowledges the light in you,
Lee