Monday, June 11, 2012

Me, Truman Capote, And Proud of It: Celebrating LBGT Month

Recently, I was invited to read at Skylight Books . . .



We got there early, so we ventured down the street so Peepy could get a snack . . .


Then we explored Skylight . . . both parts. That's right, TWO buildings, cause its awesomeness could not be confined to one. Here's the side with lots of graphic novels, art books, etc . . .

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And here's the other side, with fiction, kids books, non-fiction, etc., where the readings took place . . .

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Soon it was time to begin. The event, AND PROUD OF IT: Gay and Lesbian Writers Who Inspired Us, was In celebration of LGBT Heritage Month.

Award-winning author Noel Alumit hosted the evening . . .


The authors, straight and gay, included . . .


Here's Noel, Raquel Gutierez, Stephen Reigns, Hope Edelman, Frederick Smith, Leslie Schwartz, and Imani Tolliver.

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(Um. I was smitten by the microphone. That's why it appears in front of everyone's face in the photos.)

When it was my turn, I read from Truman Capote.


It discombobulates me to think that the same person who wrote BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S also created a new genre when he wrote the groundbreaking IN COLD BLOOD which first appeared in THE NEW YORKER magazine.

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Oh, hey! If you love the movie BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S (which is wonderful, except for the racist part with Mickey Rooney playing an Asian), then you've got to read FIFTH AVENUE, 5 A.M. -- Audrey Hepburn, Breakfast at Tiffany's, And The Dawn Of The Modern Woman by Sam Wasson . . .

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As for IN COLD BLOOD, I even managed to include a reference to the book in my first novel for kids, MILLICENT MIN, GIRL GENIUS . . .


Now, let's return to Skylight. That night, I chose to read from A CHRISTMAS MEMORY.


When I was a kid I loved the story. I still do. But back then, I didn't even know who Capote was, or if he was old or young, gay or straight, tall or short -- I just knew that his story was beautiful and it made me cry. I was soooooo worried I would start weeping in Skylight when I read.


And so I started. Here's the attractive and witty crowd . . .

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As I read, I saw people nodding (as in agreement, not as in "nodding off"), for it seems that many were familiar with this classic. I was so proud of myself! I didn't cry, although I did wobble a bit at the end. Phew -- made it through the evening without tears!!!

Then before the last author went up, Noel told us about him. To help Celebrate LGBT Heritage Month, there was a Youth Creative Writing/Video Contest for students in grades 6 -12. We were lucky to have one of the winners as our last speaker!


Vista School 11th grader, Jesus "Jesse" Navarro, read his amazing work,"Our Heritage." His poem was beautiful and it made me cry.


Disclaimer: No proofreaders were harmed (or even used) in the creation of this blog.

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Lisa Yee
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