The Lambda Literary Foundation, the country’s leading national nonprofit organization for the LGBT literary community, is pleased to announce the renewal of a grant of $25,000 from Amazon.com for a third year in a row, a continuation of Amazon.com’s support for the Writers Retreat for Emerging LGBT Voices.  This year’s Retreat will be held July 28th through August 4th, 2012 in Los Angeles.

LLF’s Writers Retreat is the only residency in the world established specifically for promising LGBT writers taught by a brilliant and diverse faculty, themselves all successful LGBT writers. For one rigorous, immersive week, Writers Retreat students in fiction, young adult fiction, nonfiction or poetry will workshop their manuscripts, forge connections to publishing industry professionals and, most importantly, build a community of peers on whom they’ll depend for years of encouragement, inspiration and friendship. Writers Retreat Fellows have gone on to publish an impressive array of works.

“Amazon.com’s ongoing and generous support of LLF’s Writers Retreat reflects its commitment to fostering emerging voices in the LGBT community,” said Tony Valenzuela, LLF’s Executive Director.  “We are grateful to Amazon.com for helping to ensure the success of the Retreat which has, since 2007, firmly established itself as a leading center of creativity for up-and-coming LGBT writers whose work fully explores the LGBT experience.”

“LLF’s importance in the development and nurturing of new writers grows stronger every year,” said Jon Fine, director of Author & Publisher Relations for Amazon.com.  “The Writers Retreat exemplifies LLF’s commitment to providing essential creative, spiritual and practical support for authors in the LGBT community.  We are proud to continue our support of LLF and the Writers Retreat, and look forward to great new works from these emerging voices.”

Amazon.com’s $25,000 grant is among the largest received by LLF and a significant contribution to the mission of the Lambda Literary Foundation.  As in years past, the grant will enable emerging writers with talent and promise to participate through scholarship funds.

The Writers Retreat provides an unparalleled opportunity to learn from the very best writers in the LGBT community.  This year’s main faculty:

Dorothy Allison, Fiction.  Ms. Allison is the author of the prize-winning novels, Bastard out of Carolina and Cavedweller, as well as the books Two or Three Things I know for SureTrash,Skin, and the book of poetry, The Women Who Hate Me.

Alex Sanchez, Young Adult Fiction.  Sanchez, the recipient of LLF’s 2011 Outstanding Mid-Career Novelist Prize, is best known for his debut 2001 novel, Rainbow Boys, selected by the American Library Association as a “Best Book for Young Adults,” and praised by School Library Journal as a book that could “open eyes and change lives.”

Cris Beam, Nonfiction.  Beam teaches creative writing at Columbia University and is the author of Transparent, a nonfiction book that covers seven years in the lives of four transgender teenagers, which won the Lambda Literary Award for best transgender book in 2008, and was a Stonewall Honor book. Her young adult novel, I am J, was released by Little, Brown in March 2011, and a nonfiction book about the state of foster care in the U.S. will be released by Houghton Mifflin-Harcourt in 2013.

Jewelle Gomez, Poetry.  Gomez is the author of seven books including the double Lambda Literary Award-winning, Black lesbian vampire novel, The Gilda Stories. She also wrote the play based on the novel, Bones and Ash, which toured 13 US cities. Her third collection of poetry,Oral Tradition, was also nominated for a Lambda Literary Award.

Distinguished guest faculty, whose names will be announced at a later date, will also present workshops and lectures.

Lambda Literary Foundation is one of a diverse range of not-for-profit organizations receiving support from Amazon.com for programs dedicated to developing new writers and creating and publishing new works.  Other recipients include The Kenyon ReviewOne Story, Writegirl, Narrative Magazine, Copper Canyon, The Loft Literary Center, Seattle Arts & Lectures, Pen American Center, the New York Writers Coalition, National Novel Writing Month, the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses, Hedgebrook, 826 Seattle, the Alliance for Young Artist and Writers, Girls Write Now, Public Space, Lambda Literary Foundation, Slice, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Bomb, Brooklyn Book Festival, Words Without Borders, The Moth, the Association of Writers and Writing Programs and the Asian American Writers Workshop.  All of these organizations share Amazon.com’s dedication to fostering the creation, discussion, and publication of new writing and new authors.

Applications and scholarship requests for the Writers Retreat are open through April 16, 2012.  For additional information, click here .



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  • Michael Craft

2 Responses to “Amazon.com Renews $25,000 Grant to Lambda Literary’s Writers Retreat for Emerging LGBT Voices”

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