Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Pilot Podcast Interview ft. Dr. Krystal Howard and NCSCL Director Dr. Joseph T. Thomas Jr.

Hey Everyone!

We here at the NCSCL have enjoyed interviewing all of the fantastic guest speakers that have visited this last academic year. In an effort to keep innovation going, we decided to do something a little different in our interview with Dr. Krystal Howard and made the NCSCL Podcast! Our first episode is the recorded interview between our director Dr. Joseph T. Thomas Jr. and guest Dr. Krystal Howard and following her talk on the pedagogical impact of verse novels.

Being that this is the pilot, there is still a lot that we want to work on and improve in the future. Please comment and let us know what your thoughts on this type of project are--what works, what can be improved, what you would like to see in the future, if you would like more of this type of content--so we can keep growing as a center.

Here is the link for the Podcast (and to our SoundCloud account if you want to follow us there). Below is the embedded version. We hope you enjoy!

Highlights from Dr. Krystal Howard's Lecture:

Back in February, Dr. Krystal Howard graced the NCSCL and SDSU by giving a talk on verse novels and their pedagogical impact. Unfortunately, due to a busy semester, it is only now getting published. Nonetheless, please enjoy the highlights from the talk! There is also a special test-run/pilot podcast interview with Dr. Howard and our very own Professor Thomas following soon!

Dr. Krystal Howard graced SDSU students and faculty on February 27th with a lecture discussing her current research interests. Titled “Form as Political Resistance,” her talk looked at verse novels for children and young readers that focus on the education of the young poet--specifically Jacqueline Woodson’s Brown Girl Dreaming and Kwame Alexander’s Booked, both of which “advocate for the value of stylistic imitation through the depiction of children who write influence or erasure poems.” She discussed how these novels “highlight model authors who emphasize racial tensions” and that “the influence of erasure poems within these novels reflects socio-cultural concerns and follows the long-standing tradition in children’s literature of using texts as pedagogical tools that model behavior, and, specifically in this case, writing behavior.”
Before beginning, she explained that she got into this area of focus by reading the verse novels Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson and Out of the Dusk by Karen Hesse in an undergrad creative writing poetry class and became interested in “the form of the book.” This interest lasted with her through her MFA, Master’s, and Ph.D. programs, where, in the latter, she focused on verse novels for young readers.
            Underway with her lecture, Dr. Howard stated that Brown Girl Dreaming and Booked “focus on the artist coming of age” and that “each of these texts advocates for the value of stylistic imitation through the depiction of children who write influence or erasure poems.” Defined by an audience member, erasure poetry is “taking someone else’s text and whiting out/blacking out some of the words in order to say things that combine into your own work.”
Both these texts also “engage directly with the relationship between an artist’s creation and an artist’s environment” which “leads to emotional maturation for the characters within the text, while serving as evidence that learning to write poetry can be accessible to young readers situated outside of the text.” She also noted how both Brown Girl Dreaming and Booked “highlight model authors who emphasize racial tension,” with Brown Girl Dreaming looking at life growing up during the Civil Rights era and the influence of Langston Hughes on the young writer and Booked showing a contemporary young author erasing parts of Huckleberry Finn. As such, “the influence of erasure poems within these verse novels reflects socio-cultural concerns and follows the long-standing tradition in children’s literature of using texts as pedagogical tools that model behavior, and, specifically in this case, writing behavior.”
Dr. Howard emphasized that “the inclusion of fragments of the protagonist’s writing within the pages of the narrative underscores an emphasis on formal experimentation, collage, and the politics of form.” She defines collage--loosely--as “the layering and linking together of miscellany within a single work,” but, according to scholars such as Rona Cran and Rachael Fairbrother, collage in literary texts “moves beyond the assemblage of fragments, bringing ideas into conversation with one another, encouraging a sense of defamiliarization in the reader or viewer in order to fix attention on uneasy realities in contemporary culture, and, ultimately, emerging as a powerful site for political resistance.” Collage in the two focus texts, then, serves to “give voice to the difficulties experienced by the protagonists and to explore the issues of both confession and crisis.”
She focused specifically on the power of collage as a form of subversion and art, arguing that “in contemporary children’s and young adult literature, collage is used in order to unsettle the traditional artist coming of age narrative, and to make visible the political and social forces that help shape the writer’s developmental process” before moving on to discuss how “the verse novel is uniquely situated to address pain and healing because its form draws attention to itself as a created artifact.” An example of this is “the lyric’s emphasis on emotion, as well as poetry’s general use of space on the page, [that] invites the reader to linger over language, breaks in line and stanza in between poems,” which, considering that Woodson’s and Alexander’s verse novels contain poems within them written by young protagonists, “calls on the reader to hold space in the narrative and slow their pace further in order to consider the writing of the characters separately.”
She elaborated on what constitutes a verse novel, speaking of them as “a popular hybrid genre that engages with multiple genres, including poetry, prose, and drama” that “focuses on the emotional event and shows the reaction before and afterwards,” and is “characterized by hybrid construction.” She clarifies further that her definition of verse novels is …a series of poems linked by a narrative thread” that involve fragmentation and white-space to make the reader pause to contemplate the “gaps created by a collage of line, language, poem, scene, and para-text” which “creates an intimacy between the reader and the speaker of the poem.” The importance of this is that, “by weaving together narrative and the confessional voice, the verse novel provides the structural space necessary for reader contemplation and becomes a mode in which young readers can actively participate in the making of meaning by putting together the fragments of someone else’s life and then parlaying those resulting insights into a deeper understanding of their own experience.”
Continuing, she moved on to discuss verse novels that focus on the growth of the young writer, and how they “are unique because they present the child writer learning aspects of craft through influence, both by revering and parodying various source texts.” She quotes Tom Hunley in how poets gain their individual voice by imitation of other poets and Harold Bloom’s argument about how “‘poetic history is held indistinguishable from poetic influence, and an individual becomes a poet when she first discovers or is discovered by the dialectic of influence, first discovers poetry as being both external and internal self.’” She adds to this Dr. Joseph T. Thomas Jr.’s ideas of how child poets are “influenced through reading official school poetry, the dominate mode of poetry in schools, the kind of poetry written by adults and taught to children in the classroom” and that “‘certainly there are children who strive to emulate the adult poets they encounter, but more common are those who specialize in the sometimes bawdy playground poetry. These child poets reveal that children have a poetic tradition all of their own. A carnivalesque tradition that signifies young adult culture.’” All of this, according to Dr. Howard, is apparent in Woodson’s and Alexander’s texts. She states “While Woodson relies on poets typically associated with official school poetry, with whom her child poet speaker forms an artistic connection, Alexander draws on the childhood tradition of found poetry in order to emphasize play and humor as well as his character’s general distaste for his educational environment as a catalyst for his protagonist’s poetic tact.”
Concluding her talk, Dr. Howard expressed that Woodson’s and Alexander’s verse novels “draw connections between the education of the poet and elementary, secondary, and post-secondary institutions, linking pedagogy in the classroom and narratives directed at young readers” while also noting that “the act of inserting a creative protagonist’s own poems into a narrative is inherently pedagogical as it models for young readers how a poet might begin his or her own writing practices” serves as a powerful rhetorical move on the behalf of the author. Additionally, their verse novels are groundbreaking due to the fact “they draw on various traditions in order to illuminate contemporary issues surrounding racism in artistic expression” as well as “put forward influence, imitation, and writing response as key developmental practices” with Woodson’s protagonist “employ[ing] a method of influence that utilizes source texts by imitating structure, line, and style and Alexander’s by “use[ing] the erasure poem as a form of play and subversion in the educational setting.” These practices instilled, therefore, are an imperative aspect in the development of the young writer, states Dr. Howard,  and they “provide a map for, and a window through which, young readers can see themselves becoming poets through sustained close-reading of model poets, and a crafting of response poems that are inspired by the works of other writers that they read.”
After the talk, Dr. Howard answered a myriad of questions from faculty and students alike, and each left feeling they had learned something important about the nature of verse novels, whether that be in their construction or application. We at the NCSCL and the faculty of the English and Comparative Literature Department are grateful for Dr. Howard’s visit and look forward to seeing more of her research in the future.
For more info on that, check out Dr. Howard’s website and the next NCSCL blog for a follow up podcast conversation between her and our very own NCSCL Director Dr. Joseph Thomas Jr.!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

SNAPSHOTS: Dr. Jan Susina's Lecture on "Alice’s Wonderland to Alice in Wonderland: Walt Disney’s Problem Child"

Hello Readers!

Below are some snapshots taken from Dr. Jan Susina's lecture in March. Dr. Susina's lecture focused on the various Walt Disney Company productions and adaptations of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventure's in Wonderland. His historicizing of Disney's infamous (and now popular) Alice in Wonderland drew quite a crowd from our SDSU faculty and student body. One of our NCSCL Graduate Assistants, Andrea Kade, had a few undergraduate students from her RWS class attend the lecture and write up a blog of their own for an extra credit assignment.

Click for more insight into an undergraduate's perspective on Dr. Susina's lecture!

Emily's Blog
Alexis's Blog
Megan's Blog
Ehizogie's Blog
Raina's Blog
Taylor's Blog
Madi's Blog

Our NCSCL director, Dr. Joseph Thomas
with his mentor, Dr. Jan Susina
Black and White silent animated short film
by Walt Disney Company (1924)

Walt Disney Company series of animated and live action
cartoons called Alice Comedies (1923-1927)

Photos of Lewis Carroll (left) and Walt Disney (right)

Walt Disney's 1946 interview from American Weekly
magazine about his views on Carroll's Alice stories

Lutz's educational book helped inspire
Walt Disney's animation techniques

Dr. Jan Susina during the Q&A session

Quote from McCall's magazine from Walt Disney
and his conflicted feelings about the Alice film

Left: Sir John Tenniel's originial woodcut of the White Rabbit (1865);
Right: Walt Disney's feature film version of the White Rabbit (1951)

Quote from Walt Disney (1939)

Donald Hall artwork during the pre-production
stage of the Disney feature film

Mickey Mouse adaptation of Carroll's story (1936)

Live Action Alice in Wonderland (1933)
Dr. Susina's audience

Alice Liddell, the inspiration for Carroll's
fictional Alice

Page from E.G. Lutz's animation book

SDSU Children's literature professors Dr. Angel Matos (left) and
Dr. Joseph Thomas (right) with Dr. Jan Susina (center) after the lecture

Many thanks to Dr. Jan Susina for giving such an insightful and brilliant lecture on the adaptations of Carroll's Alice by the Walt Disney Company.

If you would like to contact Dr. Susina you can email him or check out his website, Ghost of the Talking Cricket.

You can also following him on his Twitter account with the aptly named handle: @alicentweetland

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Interview: Dr. Derritt Mason, Canadian Scholar in Queer and Media Studies

In February, NCSCL’s Chris Deming and Andrea Kade sat down with University of Calgary’s foremost scholar in media and queer studies, Dr. Derritt Mason. We originally posted his lecture highlights at SDSU on our blog in April. Read on for a detailed insight into Dr. Mason’s work on occluded queerness and how he challenges assumptions about YA and children’s literature.       

Academic Position: Assistant Professor, Department of English, University of Calgary
Places of Education: BA Hons. (Faculty of Information and Media Studies, Western University), MA (Department of English and Cultural Studies, McMaster University), PhD (Department of English and Film Studies, University of Alberta)

CHRIS: Your current project looks at queer young adult literature as a repository for anxious adult affect. Can you tell us more about what this project looks like and what you are trying to explore?

DR. MASON: Well, my project looks at a specific period in time that is fundamental to how queer YA [Young Adult literature] has evolved. This project focuses on a period of time around 2010, when suddenly there was increased media interest in queer youth suicide. It’s been a problem for a long time, but all of sudden it seemed like our headlines were filled with stories of queer young people taking their lives. For the first time since Matthew Shepard’s murder in Wyoming, the media was covering in-depth the material violence that young queer people have endured. At the same time, you have Dan Savage and Terry Miller launching their YouTube anti-bullying campaign, “It Gets Better Project.” This new focus on queer YA literature and the anti-bullying project seem to be offered as a potential remedy for the social issues that young queer people are facing.

In the 80s and 90s only a handful of books in the queer YA genre appeared each year, but after 2010—20, 30 or 40, sometimes up to 80 titles were published in a given year. There was also a new emphasis on the types of visibility and representation in queer YA books.

In the early days of queer YA lit, publishers wouldn’t allow these books to have happy endings. They thought it would be harmful to tell young people that you can be out and queer and live a happy life because they believed they were selling a delusion. Now the opposite is true: if you don’t show queer young people that they can be “out and proud” then you are doing them doing a disservice, even potentially harming them with this message. Thus begins a really anxious conversation surrounding the queer YA genre. What it does is foreground a certain type of visibility where the protagonists are concerned—characters have to be out and embody a coherent and cohesive sexual identity. The affect has to be positive. [Dr. Angel Matos] does a lot of work on these lines as well. A lot of queer theory, however, is resistant to coherent identity and embraces negative affect.

ANDREA: Why do you think that is?

DR. MASON: Well, queer theory itself, is resistant to the idea that something is stable or fixed, and this is not how identity gets narrated in a lot of this criticism surrounding queer YA. For example in the “It Gets Better Project," we often see a coming out narrative that suggests that when you discover your true self, your identity becomes stable. Whereas queer theory implies that sexuality is shifting and not something that’s sedimented, but always changing through time.

My project is called Sites of Anxiety in Queer Young Adult Literature and Culture and I’m interested in those places and spaces and sites that seem to produce the most adult anxiety in the discussion of queer young adult literature. I look at these sites and diagnose what I think is making critics anxious and then I use queer theory to push at and challenge them. I believe there’s actually something really interesting that’s happening here and we can’t reduce it to a failure of visibility.

ANDREA: How are you approaching this? Any specific framework you are using?

DR. MASON: In these conversations I’m looking at what kind of language is being used to talk about queer YA. For example, I’m drawing from a chapter on visibility for my lecture [today]. Critics, especially contemporary critics, look at older works like John Donovan’s I’llGet There, It Better Be Worth the Trip and Isabelle Holland’s The Man Without a Face and tend to say that these books are remnants of an older time, where the protagonists are lonely and sad, and if the protagonist has an animal, the animal is inevitably going to die, and conventions like these represent an unevolved form of queer YA.  However, what I am saying is that there is still something interesting happening in these texts—queer relations, forms of desire—that can’t be reduced to one single type of visibility that critics view as being a remedy for queer youth suffering.

CHRIS: Very interesting!

DR. MASON: So I have a chapter on visibility and another chapter on risk—this idea of risk in queer YA.

ANDREA: Any particular type of risk?

DR. MASON: I trace how the idea of queer youth has emerged though pathologizing discourses where young people are talked about as being at risk for various things. Essentially, I kind of trouble that idea. There are some theories that discuss how we risk something in order to gain something productive from whatever we risking.

ANDREA: Risk is very much a large component in adolescence—sexually and physically.

DR. MASON: Yes, but I’m trying to move away from this idea that risk is inherently negative—rather, it can yield productive things.  In one chapter, I draw on the work of DeborahBritzman, a queer educational theorist. She talks about risk as being essential to learning. When you learn something new and exciting, you risk an element of yourself in how you come to understand the world and your relationship to other people and to yourself.

CHRIS: That sounds like a really fascinating project. Are you almost done with it?

DR. MASON: The full manuscript is due in August. It’s a book based on my dissertation project and I’m currently revising it.

CHRIS: So it’s going to get done soon enough anyway.

DR. MASON: That’s the hope!

ANDREA: Do you have any ideas about future projects you want to work on?

DR. MASON: I’m teaching a graduate seminar on digital children’s and young adult literature. I was lucky enough to get a grant so my students could have iPads for the duration of the term. We are looking at picture books and their digital adaptations, digital fairy tales, but also online cultures and communities that young people tend to frequent. So that’s potentially the next project, but it’s still in a very preliminary phase.

ANDREA: Any particular communities?

DR. MASON: We look at fan culture and fandoms, but also new narrative forms in online spaces like “LetsPlay” videos—when someone will record themselves playing a video game and then narrate their experience playing it. It’s a massive online community.

CHRIS: What are the differences between the Canadian and American children’s literature fields? Are there any differences in how you go about studying it?

DR. MASON: I think the way the publishing industry currently works makes it hard to sharply distinguish between Canada and the US when it comes to contemporary children’s and young adult literature, although certainly these two countries have their own distinct literary histories. My own research is mostly contemporary, and primarily in a context that includes Canada and the US. There are, of course, scholars who have a regional focus on Canadian children’s literature, in English and in French. Currently there is also some really important work being done on texts for young people that address Canada’s legacy of colonial violence against our Indigenous peoples.

Most of the texts I analyze in my project are by American authors, but I do have one Canadian text in there, which is Shyam Selvadurai’s excellent YA novel Swimming in the Monsoon Sea. When I teach, I try to support Canadian authors and create a diverse syllabus. But I think in terms of the scholarly communities, just by virtue of the way conferences are set up, like the Children’s Literature Association’s international conference held in the US, the boundaries and borders of our discipline are pretty permeable.

ANDREA: I know you will be discussing ParaNorman at this afternoon’s lecture and I’m writing an essay on this film that focuses on how methods of play function for the child in their path towards adolescence. In particular, I’m looking at repressed play with Agatha and her transformation into the monstrous child. Can you tell me your thoughts on the character of Agatha, in particular?

DR. MASON: That’s really interesting because I’ve never thought about it through the lens of play—it sounds like you are doing something really cool. With this film, I’m specifically talking about these two versions of queerness. You have Mitch who is the gay jock, right, and he comes out through a punchline at the end of the film. But, the entire film is more structured around this occluded type of queerness embodied by Norman and Agatha through their outsider status--Agatha is executed for being a witch and Norman has inherited those same kinds of powers. So my approach to the film is through this occlusion. And this is part of the same 2010-2012 shift in queer YA discourse, where you have  visible forms of queerness that get all of the attention. But you also have all of these other, more subtle, occluded queernesses circulating in the film, and the relationship between Norman and Agatha is a fundamental part of that.

ANDREA: Can you define “occluded queerness” for our audience?

So in the discussion later today, I will talk about Alexander Doty who has written a ton on what it means to read queerly.  He writes about how texts can contain meaning that is not limited to visible representations of say, gay or lesbian identities. But we can still read and interpret these texts queerly, and what that means is we find ways of identifying or counter-identifying with certain characters or relationships between characters. And we do the work of producing queerness in a given text through the way we read and interpret it. Fan fiction is actually a great example of producing queerness in a given text—you write queerness into a text, acting kind of like a detective, hunting for clues in a story that might suggest where two characters could potentially have a queer relationship in the margins of the text. Fan fiction on [J.K. Rowling’s characters] of Harry and Draco is a good example of this type of thing.

ANDREA: Do you think this is because the characters and readers are so young? Since their own sexual identity isn’t fully formed, especially at this particular stage in their life, is this a way of exploring their own sexuality?

DR. MASON: Yes, I think that’s part of it—that the child in the text might not have a sexual identity that is visibly formed, so we as spectators can partake in its formation. But I also think it’s doing something to serve the needs of queer audiences. Especially when looking back a few decades, when there weren’t as many overt queer representations in literature. In order to see yourself in a text, you had to do the work of creating and producing queerness in a text. There is a huge body of work on queerness in Disney films, for example. Disney films are often notoriously sexist, heteronormative, and yet, they contain all of these queer signifiers. For instance, there’s an article on Timon and Pumbaa in The Lion King as kind of a queer male couple. And it’s commonly known that Ursula, the Sea Witch in The LittleMermaid, was modeled after Divine, the famous drag queen.

And so you can think about how those are not necessarily visible, obvious forms of queerness but rather these more subtle occluded forms of queerness that you need either some contextual knowledge for, or you can produce queerness in the film through your own reading or interpretation of the film. And I think ParaNorman is filled with that kind of thing. In the upcoming talk, we’ll see how Norman’s parents discuss his magic powers. His father says, “I don’t want any of that limp wristed, hippie garbage around here. This isn’t the West Coast. People talk.” This is exactly how you would expect a homophobic father to talk about his queer child, and even though Norman isn’t visibly gay (the way Mitch is), we still have all of these queer signifiers that are circulating around him.

ANDREA: Yeah, it’s like saying, “this is how you should be!” in trying to deter him from a particular path.

DR. MASON: Exactly. And Norman says “I didn’t ask to be this way,” and his dad’s reply is “well, neither did we.” In a different context this would be like a coming out story, and that’s why I find the film so interesting! Instead, you have this gay jock character who comes out at the end of the film.

ANDREA: Where you expecting it the first time when you watched the film?

DR. MASON: I did, because I had read about it, so that’s why I watched it.

CHRIS: If you hadn’t of read that article would you have expected it or seen that coming?

DR. MASON: I don’t think so. And the way they designed that character subverts that expectation because he’s this huge beefy dude. And Courtney, Norman’s sister, flirts with him the entire film and he’s completely clueless. Another reason I like this project, is because the National Film Board of Canada, where I used to work, specializes in stop-motion animation and we would teach the kids to build characters’ expressions with clay, completing twenty-four frames per second. But they way they do it now is through 3-D rapid prototyping. In 3-D, they print out all the facial expressions needed for the frame.

ANDREA: Per our NCSCL director’s request, Dr. Joseph Thomas wants to know: What are the three most interesting things about you?

(Laughs all around the table)

DR. MASON: Oh my god! It’s uncomfortable to describe yourself as interesting …

ANDREA and CHRIS predicted this question would be a challenge for our guest. DR. MASON suggested we ask DR. ANGEL MATOS, whose office is located across the hall from the NCSCL office—a most lively section in the SDSU Arts and Letter building—what he thinks is the most interesting thing about him. DR. MATOS remarked on DR. MASON’s keen fashion sense, and then fell flustered because “you can’t just extrapolate three things!”

CHRIS: [saving the day] How about this…what are three interesting things about the interdisciplinary area that you are studying that you really didn’t expect to find?

DR. MASON: That’s actually a really great question! It’s always interesting to find what surprises you about your own work. I guess in terms of this project, all of these things occurring in the queer community after 2010, a time when I was writing my dissertation, radically changed the shape of what I was working on. I guess too—this might be tied into things that are interesting about me—I never thought I would be…well, my own background is very interdisciplinary, I have an undergraduate degree in media studies and I taught English in a high school in France for a little while between my undergrad and my master’s in cultural studies, and then I worked between my Master’s and PhD for 3 years the National Film Board in Canada, one of the few remaining film production agencies funded through taxpayer dollars.

I worked there for three years designing educational workshops on documentary filmmaking and animation for students of all ages and for teachers, as well. So I never thought I would settle on a literature PhD, or become a children’s literature specialist either. It was just something that happened. Originally I was going to do a queer Canadian literature project, but I’ve always been interested in young people’s culture and working with young people. My master’s research was on a queer youth digital video project that the Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival does every year. And so that ended up shaping my dissertation interests, where I look at this fascinating new way that people are now talking about queer young adult literature and putting all this emphasis and importance on it—which I totally agree with—it became something that I ended up wanting to study. And that led me down the path towards children’s lit.

ANDREA: I feel like some people don’t really understand what the study of children’s literature is—the way scholars approach this field or what they are trying to do.

DR. MASON: It’s traditionally an undervalued part of the academy. There’s this great book by Beverly Lyon Clark called Kiddie Lit: The Cultural Construction of Children's Literature in America. She looks at the history of children’s literature and how it has not often been taken seriously by the academy. And you sometimes find this amongst students, too. Some of them assume a children’s lit course will be an easy “A,” and they’ll only be reading Harry Potter or picture books. That’s what I like about teaching it—you get to challenge those students, to change their perspective on the discipline and show them how wonderfully complex literature for young people can be.

We'd like to thank Dr. Mason for taking the time to sit down with us before his talk at SDSU in February. He will also be a presenter at the 2018 Children's Literature Association Conference in San Antonio, Texas this summer. As always we ask our guests for suggested reading lists. Below is Dr. Derritt Mason’s Canadian YA or Children’s literature recommendations.

Vivek Shraya (vivekshraya.com) is an amazing interdisciplinary artist—she’s a filmmaker, musician, poet, and children’s & YA author. One of my all-time favourites is her first book, God Loves Hair (re-released in 2014), which is an illustrated coming-of-age narrative unique for its powerful account of queerness at the intersections of race, gender, and religion. Vivek has also recently authored a picture book, The Boy and the Bindi (2016), which is a really sweet story of a boy who is fascinated by his mom’s bindi, so she gives him one of his own.

One of the best novels I’ve read lately is Kai Cheng Thom’s genre-blending Fierce Femmes andNotorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girl’s Confabulous Memoir (2016). It’s part fairy tale, part biomythography, part bildungsroman, and it puts a really compelling twist on the trans memoir. https://ladysintrayda.wordpress.com/

Finally, an author to keep your eyes on is Joshua Whitehead, a Two-Spirit/Indigiqueer-identified writer who is about to release his first novel, Jonny Appleseed (http://www.arsenalpulp.com/bookinfo.php?index=479). This one is going to rock the YA world—I just know it. Joshua is a super talented writer and he also just released a book of poetry, Full-Metal Indigiqueer, to critical acclaim.

You can follow Dr. Mason on Twitter or email him at derritt.mason@ucalgary.ca