This is a jawn about libraries
by Poliana Irizarry
One more time (again, please feel free to reblog).
In November, I finished National Novel Writing Month, and then I put the novel I wrote down for about six months. It was this really intense thirty day period where I wrote about all of the physical and sexual abuse I grew up with. About all of the poverty and addiction I was surrounded by. About the death of my brother. About religion and coming out, and about the beautiful, awful hometown I alternately blame and credit for how I turned out.“It would be easy for me to write an “it gets better” letter to you. To tell you how awesome my life is right now and how if I hadn’t stuck it out through the hard stuff, I wouldn’t be here today. I’d even be sort of right.
I had nightmares and asked my mom a lot of clarifying questions that were hard for both of us. But at the end of the month, I had written a book. When I picked it up again, I was still proud of it, but I wanted there to be a message of overwhelming hope contained in my first novel. So I wrote about the good stuff. The funny stuff. Punk rock and zines, comics books and community. The stuff that functioned as a lifeline for me during the hard times. And so, my sorta book became two sort of books: What Happened and What Helped.
Everybody Else’s Girl will be released as Sweet Candy Publishing’s first title. I’ve always been impressed by the quality and consistency with which Sage runs Sweet Candy Distro, and I couldn’t be more psyched to be on board for this exciting celebration of NINE years of amazingness.
I hope you’ll consider donating to this project if you can. If not, maybe you know someone who would be interested. Thanks so much for your support.
Here’s the link to get perks, follow updates, or make donations.
But that’s patronizing bullshit, and I don’t think it will help you right now.
It’s easy for older queers and trauma survivors (and ex-junkies, disabled folks and other refugees from the island of misfit toys) to forget about how things felt when they were in the trenches. I get that – one of the great things about being an adult survivor is that your present is sometimes the most powerful distraction you have against your past.
What I want to tell you, who might be holding this book, dealing with abuse, accessibility, molestation, addiction, internalized homophobia, racism, or bullying based on your (real or perceived) gender or sexuality is that there are things you can do to make it better. You have choices.
That might be the most powerful, important thing I can tell you. It’s the thing I wish someone had told me. You have choices. You get to take an active role in how your life turns out. And your life doesn’t have to look like what people told you. You don’t owe anything to anyone – least of all the people who hurt you.”