Tis the season for winding down of the school year and various holidays, Mothers Day and Fathers Day among them. And while there are many families out there celebrating their love for one another, there are also many children, including 40 percent of LGBT youth*, who will be spending these holidays out on the streets, abandoned by the very families who should be their mental, emotional, and physical support.
The current fiscal situation at the Federal and local government levels has been devastating to the few shelters currently operating and a hindrance in opening new badly needed shelters and group homes. In our area, a bright light has been the opening of a new LGBT shelter, Promise Place, on the Washington, DC/Prince Georges County, MD line. But on the flip side, the Wanda Alston House is in dire need of donations and assistance in order to continue. And the same can be said for the Ali Forney Center in NYC, whose outreach building was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy last year.
Every day we hear more about bullied or harassed gay youth in the media, the politicians make speeches and little seems to be done at the practical level. We need more legislation, more enforcement of said legislation, and just an increase in overall awareness of the fragility of LGBTQ youth in our society today.
Luckily, there are a number of M/M authors who are helping the cause with donations of royalties from their books. I will be listing some of them here. If you know of others, please let me know and I will add them to my list. This week, editor Kris Jacen introduced the anthology Lost and Found by Featherlight Press. Her announcement and the book details are listed below. I have not read it as yet but its on my list to do so. If you have read it, and want to post a review, contact me. Also listed is Sue Brown’s book, The Sky Is Dead, recently reviewed here and a must read recommendation for me. Sue Brown is also donating proceeds of that book, here is her comment:
Thank you so much for the review. Your review highlights many of the issues LGBTQ kids face. The royalties from this book are going to The Albert Kennedy Trust, a UK charity supporting homeless LGBT kids.
And Kris Jacen on the Lost and Found Anthology:
From Kris Jacen, editor to various M/M author websites:
Some might know, others might not, but I’ve been working with ten very talented authors on an anthology entitled, Lost and Found. The book released last night from Featherweight Press. All of the stories deal have the theme of hope for those teens that are kicked out/told they don’t matter by their families for being who they are or loving who they love. Each author (and me) is donating their royalties to charity. Below is my editor’s note from the front of the anthology. I hope you pick up a copy or help spread the word so that we can make the most of the donation to help these homeless LGBT teens.
Lost and Found http://www.featherweightpublishing.com/ShowBook.php?YA=ANTH_LOSTNFND
In the Fall of 2012, DH Starr approached me about Featherweight publishing an anthology that he was a part of. It was a special project being organized by Michele Montgomery. All the authors wanted to donate their royalties from the anthology to charity. They wanted the monies to go to a specific cause—they wanted the money to go to a charity that worked with LGBT homeless teens.
The inspiration for the anthology was a picture that they had seen with the text over the image that said “40% of homeless youth are LGBT. The #1 reason they’re on the streets in family rejection.”
Once we got to final editing stages we realized, we didn’t know WHICH charity to donate the monies to. There are so many great charities out there working with LGBT youth that we weren’t sure which to choose. We wanted to make sure that no matter how much, it would make a difference. So the search was on.
I was pleasantly surprised to come across one that had the name of the anthology almost exactly—Lost-n-Found Youth, Inc. It seemed like fate talking to me and after speaking with one of the board members, I was convinced of it. You see the board member told me that the day before we spoke, they received a call from a teen that had been on vacation with his parents and when they found a gay romance on his eReader, they left him on the side of the road. Yes, you read that correctly, abandoned him for reading a gay romance.
Our hope is that with these stories, these teens realize that there are many out there that care about them. That no matter what anyone says—THEY MATTER.
So I am making a list of books whose proceeds or part of their proceeds will be donated to LGBTQ youth shelters and organizations. I know I am missing quite a few so help me fill in the list and send me the names and publishers. Here are the first
two three books to start the list:
Bullied and harassed at school for his sexuality, Dillon Davis can’t see his life getting any better, but he can see it getting worse. Depressed, wounded in spirit and body, he’s nearing a point of hopelessness, until he sees a picture of his favorite stage actor, Brandon Alexander, with his partner, Shunichi Miyamoto. At learning Shunichi runs a karate dojo, a spark of hope comes to Dillon of learning to defend himself, and most of all, meeting Brandon.
Brandon Alexander is filled with compassion for Dillon the moment he meets him. He knows all too well what it’s like to be scorned for being gay. He and Shunichi want nothing more than to help him, but when Dillon never returns to the dojo, they fear what’s happened to him
Per SJ Frost: “Kris Jacen and I are donating our royalties from this story to The Trevor Project.It’s with the support of all who buy this book that we’re able to do this, and from both of us to you, thank you, so very much, for joining with us in giving to those in need.”
ebook, 79 pages
Lost and Found (from the Goodreads website):
by Kris Jacen (Editor), MF Kays, T.A. Webb (Goodreads Author), Tabatha Hart, Dakota Chase, Caitlin Ricci (Goodreads Author), Jeff Erno (Goodreads Author), D.C. Juris
*Some statistics say that 40% of all homeless teens are GLBT. They’re on the streets after their families have thrown them away, told them that they don’t matter, that they’re not normal. Well, guess what? Those families are wrong. This collection of stories by ten talented authors spans the spectrum (historical, paranormal, transgender, cutter, gay) to show that – it’s okay, there are people out there that care, and these teens are perfect just the way they are.
All royalties from this anthology are being donated to Lost-n-Found Youth in Atlanta, Georgia. A wonderful charity working with these teens, helping them find their new place and get on their feet.
Paperback, 421 pages
Expected publication: May 31st 2013 by Featherweight Press
The Sky is Dead by Sue Brown:
Danny is young, gay, and homeless. He lives in the park, preferring to avoid attention, but when thugs confront a stranger, Danny rushes to his rescue. He and the would-be victim, Harry, form a cautious friendship that deepens months later, when Harry persuades Danny to visit his home. Daring to believe he has found happiness, Danny finds his world turned upside down yet a…more
ebook, 232 pages
Published April 17th 2013 by Dreamspinner Press
And now the week ahead in book reviews:
Monday, May 20: Breaking The Devil by Bailey Bradford
Tuesday, May 21: Noah by Ben Ryder
Wed., May 22: Still by Mary Calmes
Thursday, May 23: Closet Capers Anthology
Friday< May 24: Isle of Where? by Sue Brown
Saturday, May 25: Unforgiving Minute by Sarah Grainger