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:: Support Lambda Literary and Support LGBTQ+ Voices ::

Dear Friend,

I am so excited to introduce myself to you – I’m Samiya Bashir, the new Executive Director of Lambda Literary. 

I have a deep commitment to building partnerships with people like you who believe that the voices and stories of LGBTQ+ people are needed now more than ever.

New as I am, I am not quite new to Lambda Literary. As a two-time Lammy Award finalist myself, this deeply critical, legacy organization has been important to me and my own writing since the early days of the Lambda Book Report and for the 30+ years since. This organization makes such an impact. With your support, Lambda Literary can lift LGBTQ+ voices – and the reflections of our lives – even further. 

Today, despite all the progress we’ve made to have a more inclusive society and end discrimination against LGBTQ+ people, our communities continue to face attacks and barriers in every aspect of our lives. 

The recent violence in Colorado Springs that left five people dead and 25 injured (content warning in link: gun violence) is a tragic reminder of why our work is critical. We are not going away. We will not be silenced. We will not serve idly as canaries in the coal mines of oppression and carnage.

But the reality is we are faced with many challenges.  A recent report released by PEN America, announced that over 50 groups at the national, state, and local level with LGBTQ characters or themes are advocating to ban the books. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, as of this past July, lawmakers of mostly Republican-controlled states introduced at least 162 anti-LGBTQ bills that would limit classroom instruction about LGBTQ-related topics.

The hateful campaigns of the 70s, 80s, 90s have relaunched to scare people once again into rejecting LGBTQ+ rights. But their hateful strategy today is far more dangerous. People are using social media to go after individuals, like schoolteachers in small towns across the country, with hateful and dangerous messages. We stand with the teachers, the LGBTQ+ writers, and we will continue to educate and advocate for our human rights.

LGBTQ+ stories honor our history and provide a roadmap towards freedom and equality. I hope you agree that LGBTQ+ stories are essential reflections of our vast and expansive humanity. 

Today, I ask that you make a donation in support of our programmatic work as we prepare for the year ahead. 

Check out the plans forthcoming from Lambda’s programs in 2023:

  • The LGBTQ+ Emerging Writers Retreat: Host the Writer’s Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ+ Voices – the nation’s premier LGBTQ+ writing residency, which brings together poets, playwrights, screenwriters, essayists, novelists, and memoirists in a safe, welcoming and love-centered community.
  • Learn with Lambda: Provide access for LGBTQ+ writers to literary arts pedagogy and community. Lambda Literary offers access to panels, craft workshops, and meetings with publishing professionals to uplift the work of our Fellows and grow their writing careers.
  • The LGBTQ+ Writers in Schools Program: Elevate our partnership with the NYC Department of Education to provide safe spaces for students to talk about great books, queer life, and how to thrive as an LGBTQ+ person. The program will continue to serve students across all grade levels, K-12, and provides access to award-winning books and authors as well as professional development on how to deliver an LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum.
  • Lambda Literary Review: We are rebuilding this critical resource and will continue to offer book reviews, interviews, industry news, and calls for submission of interest to LGBTQ+ book lovers around the world as well as new and in-depth coverage of the LGBTQ+ literary landscape.

For nearly four decades, Lambda Literary has nurtured LGBTQ+ writers and their readers by magnifying and celebrating stories that offer millions of LGBTQ+ people and our allies affirmation, validation, and inspiration.

I’m very proud of the comprehensive programming Lambda Literary provides to LGBTQ+ writers, and in the coming year, our offerings and support will expand. 

As we look towards the future, Lambda Literary will continue to grow in its service to LGBTQ+ voices – our writers and our readers. 

Join with Lambda Literary today.  Please, make a year-end donation in support of Lambda Literary as we look towards 2023 with vision, compassion, and hope.

Thank you for your support.

Sincerely,

Samiya

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