The annual Saints and Sinners LGBTQ Literary Festival will take place in New Orleans March 27-29, 2020. For registration information: Sasfest.org Ambush readers can register with a 20% discount by using the code Ambush20 when registering.
In this series, we introduce you to some of the writers in the all-star lineup for #SAS20 this March in the heart of the French Quarter.
Alex Myers is a novelist, teacher, and transgender rights advocate. Born and raised as a girl in Paris, Maine, Alex came out as transgender when he was sixteen and started living as a boy. He was the first openly transgender student at both Phillips Exeter Academy and Harvard University. At Harvard, he began his work as an activist and advocate for transgender rights, work that has led him to a career as a lecturer and educator, working with schools around the world to be more gender inclusive. After earning degrees in Near Eastern Languages and Religious Studies at Harvard and Brown, Alex went to Vermont College of Fine Arts and studied Fiction Writing. It was in this program that Alex crafted his debut novel, Revolutionary, which tells the story of his ancestor, Deborah Sampson, who disguised herself as a man and fought in the American Revolutionary War. His most recent book is Continental Divide from University of New Orleans Press. Alex teaches high school English in New Hampshire, where he lives with his wife and two cats.
Colm Tóibín is an Irish novelist, short story writer, essayist, playwright, journalist, critic and poet. He is currently the Irene and Sidney B. Silverman Professor of the Humanities at Columbia University. Tóibín’s 1990 novel The South was followed by The Heather Blazing (1992), The Story of the Night (1996) and The Blackwater Lightship (1999). His fifth novel, The Master (2004), is a fictional account of portions in the life of author Henry James. Tóibín is the author of other non-fiction books: Bad Blood: A Walk Along the Irish Border (1994), (reprinted from the 1987 original edition) and The Sign of the Cross: Travels in Catholic Europe (1994). Tóibín has written two short story collections. His first, Mothers and Sons, which as the name suggests explores the relationship between mothers and their sons, was published in 2006, and was reviewed favourably (including by Pico Iyer in The New York Times). His second, broader collection, The Empty Family, was published in 2010, and was shortlisted for the 2011 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. His most recent book is Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Joyce and Yeats(2018, Simon & Schuster.)
Irena Klepfisz was born in the Warsaw Ghetto on April 17, 1941, the daughter of Michał Klepfisz, a member of the Jewish Labour Bund. In late April 1943, when she had just turned two years old, her father, was killed, on the second day of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Earlier in 1943, Klepfisz’s father had smuggled Irena and her mother out of the ghetto; Irena was placed in a Catholic orphanage, while her mother, using false papers, worked as a maid for a Polish family. Irena and her mother immigrated to the United States in 1949. Klepfisz has worked as an activist in feminist, lesbian, and secular Jewish communities. She began publishing her poems in 1971. She was a founding editor of Conditions, a feminist magazine emphasizing the writing of lesbians, and also was a co-editor of The Tribe of Dina: A Jewish Women’s Anthology. Klepfisz has also been a contributor to the Jewish feminist magazine Bridges, and wrote the introduction to Found Treasures: Stories by Yiddish Women Writers. She is the author of A Few Words in the Mother Tongue: Poems Selected and New (with an introduction by Adrienne Rich) published by The Eighth Mountain Press, which was nominated for a Lambda Prize in Poetry in 1990.