The Ali Liebegott Interview

Waitressing for far too long, finding dead pigeons and pennies, and using “real” life as fiction, author Ali Liebegott talks to fellow author, Nairne Holtz.

Ali Liebegott has published two books, both of which have won a Lambda Literary Award. Her first book, The Beautifully Worthless (Suspect Thoughts, 2005) is a road trip tale stitched together from poetry, lists, and letters to an ex-lover. This not easily classifiable work is messy and confessional, but I found myself sucking on some of the lines, as though they were caramels. For instance, the delightful paradox found when Ali writes, “The way I love her is like the way I can’t love a part of me.”

The IHOP Papers (Carroll & Graf, 2007) is a more accessible coming of age novel written in a tight realist style. Like her first work, The IHOP Papers features a first person narrator who works as a waitress while struggling with mental illness, substance abuse, cutting, and emotional drama. The world Ali’s characters inhabit isn’t so much “edgy” as dreary and flaky, and she effortlessly captures the people and situations with deadpan style and pitch-perfect dialogue. Whether the narrator is breaking her hymen with a pen, or telling an outrageous lie to get the attention of her sexy AA sponsor, or madly charging up and down the street to freshen up her waitress uniform, it is impossible not to be charmed. In addition to a Lambda Award, The IHOP Papers scooped up a Ferro-Grumley Award and was a finalist for the Stonewall Prize.

Nairne Holtz

Nairne Holtz is the author of "This One's Going To Last Forever" and "The Skin Beneath" both from Insomniac Press.

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SCP Books Closing

News is coming out today about the sad closure of Kathy Smith’s online bookstore, SCP Books. To quote:

Unfortunately, in these difficult economic times, and given the changing landscape, I have concluded that sustaining the SCP online lesbian bookstore model is no longer economically feasible.

You can read the full statement over at StarCrossed Productions.

A sad loss indeed!

Alexandra Wolfe

Alexandra is the founder, owner, and publishing editor of the Kissed By Venus web site and magazine.

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The Big Bang Symphony

Title: THE BIG BANG SYMPHONY
Author: Lucy Jane Bledsoe
Publisher: Terrace Books, May 2010
ISBN: 978-0299235000
Rated: 3.5 stars
Genre: Literary

Antarctica is a vortex that draws you back, season after season. The place is so raw and pure, all seal hide and crystalline iceberg. The fishbowl communities at McMurdo Station, South Pole Station, and in the remote field camps intensify relationships, jack all emotion up to a 10. The trick is to get what you need and then get out fast.

The Big Bang Symphony, set in Antarctica, is as much about place as it is about the people that populate this desolate, wind-swept, unforgiving and frozen continent. A continent that is, in equal measure, one of the most beautiful, haunting places on the planet. One we all know to still be virgin and untouched…it is in this vast wilderness of blues, whites and shades of grey that Bledsoe throws together an unlikely bunch of characters each with their own reasons to be at the last stop on the ends of the earth.

Alexandra Wolfe

Alexandra is the founder, owner, and publishing editor of the Kissed By Venus web site and magazine.

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My Top Ten

Author Xenia Alexiou’s, “Top Ten”

Xenia’s passions include photography, the music of her homeland, racing fast cars and bikes, and a variety of sports. She is a voracious reader, and her extensive library contains an eclectic array of academic material, including books on sociology, anatomy, genetics, psychology, chemistry, and physics. Some of her favorite fiction authors include Fjodor Dostojewski, Leo Tolstoy, Umberto Eco, Michael Cunningham, and David Sedaris.

Today she shares her favourite ‘Top Ten’ books with us.

Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
Flesh and Blood by Michael Cunningham
The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins
Thin Red Line by James Jones
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
Hamlet by Shakespeare
JFK by Michael O’ Brien
• Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely
God, A Biography by Jack Miles
Prisoner of the State by Zhao Ziyang, Bao Pu, Renee Chiang, and Adi Ignatius
The Republic by Plato
The Iliad and Odyssey by Homer

Now share your favourite non-fiction titles with Xenia and us!

Alexandra Wolfe

Alexandra is the founder, owner, and publishing editor of the Kissed By Venus web site and magazine.

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To HEA or Not to HEA

Or, Why Are You So Damn Happy?

How do you enjoy your lesfic? Do you like it extra angsty? Bitter with a hint of drama? Light with a little sexiness on the side? Or do you prefer the Sapphic sampler platter, giving the disclaimer that as long as it’s well-executed, count you in?

The reason I ask is that there is a fair amount of grumbling amongst readers that there is a disproportionate number of romances published. I certainly can’t fault anyone for preferring to read thrillers, horror, historical, or fantasy—hell, even just basic fiction that operates outside the parameters of romance. I get that.

But as I opined in a previous column here, we as a community, have difficulty categorically defining what lesfic actually is. If I wrote a crime novel where the main character (let’s call her Detective Nippy McWinters) is a lesbian, but she spends the entire book single, immersed in dead bodies, ballistics tests, and various bodily fluids (you know, in a bad way), is that really lesfic? If the same book never mentioned her sexuality, would it be?

Colette Moody

I'm an author of lesbian fiction for Bold Strokes Books and amateur mixologist.

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