What an absolutely BONKERS ride it’s been. But, indeed, one year ago today my debut book was thrust into the world and out of my overprotective hands.
I wasn’t quite sure where it would take me - IF it would take me. And, I can say with certainty that the journey has been beyond comprehension, leading me into the world of so many fantastic new friends, new bookstores, new community advocates. I’ve grown into myself, grown as a writer. I’ve singed the edges, read in infamous spaces, shared tables with artists I never imagined would ever so much as look me in the eye.
All I can say is, if you’ve been a part of this in any way, I thank you and I love you. And, I hope you’ll stay along and see where year two takes us. Here we go.
The end of the year is approaching and, with it, come the deluge of EOY book lists from every publisher under the sun. And, I'm beyond honored to have been featured by them among their 23 Favorite LGBTQ+ Books of 2023. And, among such illustrious company!
Of the book, Ilana Masad writes: "Despite the heavy topic, the essays are often hilarious, and Lezza succeeds in echoing the very real gallows humor so necessary when facing illness and death."
You can read the whole write-up and get to know some furiously talented queer artists by reading the article HERE.
Just a reminder that, in one week's time, I will be hosted by the Middletown Public Library (in Middletown, NJ) for an Author's Visit. The event will take place on Monday, 10/16 @ 7pm and will be hybrid, occurring both live in the Community Room as well as streamed for those who would like to attend virtually.
I'm beyond humbled for this distinction from my hometown library and very much look forward to sharing in the evening with those who wish to hang IRL or stream it.
If you do plan to show up in-person, please do register for the event on the library's website. It's incredibly helpful for the venue so that they can plan accordingly.
Looking forward to seeing some of you!
Flummoxed and thrilled to receive my first ever nomination for the Pushcart Prize from my publisher Vine Leaves Press.
The Pushcart has been around since 1976, has been a stalwart champion of small presses, and is the most honored literary project in America.
Such an honor, indeed. Bowled over.
Had such an outstanding experience reading at the Les Bleus Literary Salon in Brooklyn.
An amazing space and an equally amazing opportunity to read alongside side über talents as Tiffany Clarke Harrison (@tiffanyclarkeharrison), Prachi Gupta (@prachigu), Nora Fussner (@nora.fussner) and Yuxi Lin (@yuximerollin).
Buy their books. Read their work. And, above all, support your artist friends.
Happy September, all! I believe it was Chris Rock who once said that there's "no sex in the champagne room." Luckily he never wrote a song about The Sultan Room because I'm super excited to share that I'll be a featured reader at the Les Bleus Literary Salon on Thursday, September 28th, alongside Nora Fussner (The Invisible World), Prachi Gupta (They Called Us Exceptional: And Other Lies That Raised Us), Tiffany Clarke Harrison (Blue Hour), and Yuxi Lin (RHINO, Michigan Quarterly, Longreads).
Les Bleus Literary Salon launched in February 2014 in a small boutique on the Lower East Side. Since then, Les Bleus has hosted more than 400 readers across apartments, restaurants, backyards and Zoom screens.
The event will be held on the rooftop of the aforementioned The Sultan Room (234 Starr Street, Brooklyn). Doors open at 6:30pm.
Anyone interested in attending can RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or on Instagram @lesbleusliterarysalon. Only those who have RSVP'd (and have been confirmed) will be admitted.
Hope to see you!
I was honored to join host Oaky Tyree on the Tell Me About Your Book podcast this week to discuss grief - in all its many shapes and colors - and how I translate the experience into my memoir, I'm Never Fine.
A fantastic experience with avowed champion of the indie author.
Listen below or wherever you stream!
In celebration of Red, White, & Royal Blue (@RWRBonPrime) premiering this Friday - and the gay agenda to make Uma Thurman president IRL - I took the liberty of filling out the cabinet of Ellen Claremont for Medium with an Uma for every department head.
This is MY America. The United States of UMERICA.
Read, clap, and share, kidz.
Some pretty crazy news, all.
On Monday, 8/14, I’ll be appearing as part of Brooklyn’s famed Franklin Park Reading Series alongside authors Brandon Taylor, Jenny Xie, Daniel Magariel, Rachel Cantor, and Elwin Cotman.
FP has been recommended and covered by numerous publications, including The New York Times, The New Yorker, the NY Daily News, BOMB, The Rumpus, the Paris Review and has hosted the likes of Roxane Gay, Colson Whitehead, Alexander Chee, Emma Straub and MORE.
How I’m in this company, I’ll never know. “Excited” is an understatement.
Come on out and support some awesome people in an awesome place. For more details, check out the Franklin Park site HERE.
And, we're back, in 3...2...1...
This week, I was humbled to have made my first morning news appearance on KGO-TV San Francisco (ABC7) in promotion of my book.
My heartfelt thanks to host, Reggie Aqui, for his care, his thoughtful consideration, and for using his platform to celebrate queer authors.
What a way to wrap up pride month 2023.
Watch the interview, in its entirety, HERE. ️
All posts are authored by Joe unless otherwise noted.