The sun is shining here, the weather’s warm-approaching-hot, and there are about to be parades and festivals and small personal celebrations all over the US. It’s June again, friends—and June means Pride. In honor of the Stonewall Riots that took place at the end of June 1969, this is the time of year when folks from various parts of LGBT communities take the time to remember history, to celebrate the present, and to look to the future.
Back in 2012, we ran a special bunch of Queering SFF posts in honor, too. “Pride Month Extravaganza” was a project designed to recognize a handful of books and authors and editors, some new and old, some genre and some not, that were speaking to and from queer people in exciting ways. That month’s special was devoted to developing a sense of history and a sense of progress in queer speculative fiction, and it was a lot of fun to tackle.
So, this year, I wanted to do another special QSFF series for the month of June. In considering what a good focus would be, it occurred to me that there are quite a lot of books that fit the bill of “queer” and “speculative” but that are published outside of the genre, by mainstream or queer presses, and don’t get much in the way of attention from venues that highlight SFF. These books often fly under the radar in genre circles, but deserve as much discussion as those novels with a familiar imprint-stamp on the spine.
Therefore, the Pride Month Extravaganza Redux will consider several books that might not have come up for a regular reader of speculative fiction, but totally should. I hope it’s as much fun as the first time around, and I also hope it’s a useful avenue for finding more and different voices writing queer stuff that’s speculative.
Have a good time, talk about books, come together as a community—and that’s an invitation open to everyone who wants to join in.
Lee Mandelo is a writer, critic, and editor whose primary fields of interest are speculative fiction and queer literature, especially when the two coincide. She can be found on Twitter or her website.