Free Cupcakes, Heart-shaped Refreshments, and Some Truly Sweet West Coast Readings

Anyone in San Francisco looking for a provocative literary event to attend this Valentine’s Day? Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore is hosting a release party of her new book, Why Are Faggots so Afraid of Faggots?: Flaming Challenges to Masculinity, Objectification, and the Desire to Conform, published by AK Press. Held at the San Francisco Main Library at 6 PM, contributors Jaime Cortez, Tommi Avicolli Mecca, Debanuj Das Gupta, Booh Edouardo, Eric Stanley, Harris Kornstein, Gina de Vries, Horehound Stillpoint, Matthew D. Blanchard will discuss the book with editor and host Mattilda B. Sycamore. Attendees are invited to come early for “heart-shaped refreshments.”

Speaking of AK Press, check out Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex. Editors Eric A Stanley and Nat Smith, “bring together current and former prisoners, activists, and academics to offer new ways for understanding how race, gender, ability, and sexuality are lived under the crushing weight of captivity.” Contributor Dean Spade (Normal Life) and Eric Stanley are speaking together at UC Davis this February 9th to discuss prison abolition and trans politics. A panel discussion with Eric Stanley, Nat Smith, Julia Oparah ( Sudbury), Alexander Lee, Dean Spade, Michelle Potts, Ralowe Ampu will follow at UC Berkely the next day. Specifics as well as more readings and panels are listed here. Also check out this interview with San Francisco Weekly.

Two New York Times’ articles (Amazon Signs up Authors, Cutting Publishers Out of Deal andThe Bookstore’s Last Stand) examine the future of the publishing industry, namely: will Barnes and Noble, after shutting down independent bookstores across the nation, finally be put out of business by, and if so, what are the implications for the broader publishing industry?

For artists who read a lot (particularly those tickled by the disturbing, depressing, and macabre): A BOMB magazine contest! For money! Inspired by a new book by Etgar Keret!

For readers and writers who date a lot (or want to): N+1 magazine has personals? According to the site, N+1 personals, started by internist Kailtin Phillips, is “for all the sad young literary people in the world who still haven’t found their +1 (melancholia and relative youth are in fact optional, but if you haven’t read Middlemarch/back issues of Harper’s/J R we suggest looking elsewhere).” New York Magazine reviews the site here.

Queer writers reading in a goth club bathroom, free cupcakes, cheap beer, a dance party, and a commemorative zine. Who could ask for more? Action BooksBirds of Lace, and Kate Durbin are bringing an amazing AWP off-site event to Chicago’s Neo this March. (P.S.- Anna Joy Springer is also reading.) (P.P.S.- Birds of Lace is open for chapbook submissions.)

Finally, please check out this Political Obituary of Etta James. “At age five, James developed two relationships that would remain with her throughout her life: one relationship with singing and one with black gay men, and the LGBT community as a whole.”