Happy birthday to us!

Today marks our first anniversary.

Bill and I couldn’t be more pleased with the response from you all out there – writers, editors and publishers as well as readers who listen to what we have to say and actually make purchasing decisions because of it. That is an awesome (in the original meaning) responsibility and one we don’t take lightly—which is why we will continue to bring you our best in thoughtful, entertaining, highly opinionated reviews.

Variety, however, is what keeps things interesting and it is my personal pledge to bring you more interviews with both authors and editors, including an upcoming profile of writer and cultural critic Peter Dube, as well as more thought pieces. And, of course, we will certainly continue our sponsorship of the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival in New Orleans, since that was pretty much the birthplace of this website.

What we will not be doing is bringing you many mainstream authors, gay or otherwise. And this is directed at the deluge of e-mail (well, five is a small deluge, isn’t it?) I received in my personal inbox about ignoring/not reviewing the most recent novel of an Out Mainstream Author. I won’t reveal his name, but his mother used to write vampire novels before finding Jesus. Why wouldn’t we be anxious to read and publicize this?

Well, this book was reviewed in every major press outlet known to mankind. He gets more publicity in a day than any one of the authors reviewed on this website will get in a lifetime, and that’s a damn shame, because many of the books featured here are as good if not better than his. It’s that community Bill and I started this website to serve—independent presses who struggle to break even and indie writers who reach a small segment of even the GLBT community. They deserve our attention and dollars more than mainstream authors, and their books will always have a home here.

Their indie creds, however, do not give them a free critical pass. Our standards are high and we are not afraid to call ‘em like we see ‘em. I had this conversation with someone at Saints and Sinners who called publishing reviews of books we didn’t like “ballsy.” We don’t think so, but we’re glad it distinguishes us from some other blogs and review sites and we aim to continue this practice.

And by” we”, I mean myself and our stalwart reviewers, Gavin Atlas, George Seaton and Wayne Courtois as well as our guest reviewers Lara Zielinsky, Ron Suresha and Jameson Currier. You guys all rock. Hard. And “we” also includes my co-owner, conspirator and partner in crime, William Holden, the major techno-stud – not to mention the godfather of this site, Steve Berman, who sparked the idea in NOLA last year.

So stay tuned throughout our “terrible twos” and check us out twice a week for the best of the independent queer press. We have been and will always be all you need to read about all you need to read.

JW

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