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Each month, we’ll feature a themed list to keep your tbr lists full.
To start off 2018 on a positive note, our first list features 10 uplifting quotes from some of our favorite books.
I worked hard at skating and at the same time, I didn’t like it. and people ask me how I produce so much work so quickly. It’s rare to see underage female desire depicted in literature. In you recount early memories of realizing you are a lesbian that feel very honest. Everyone recognizes Texas as a conservative state, but you grew up in Austin which is a city known for being a “liberal haven”. There are very few queer heroes in fiction for young people to connect to. I gave up pretty quickly on books because I couldn’t find what I was looking for. People are very quick to ask me ALL the personal questions, most of which I can deal with, but it can go pretty far. Everyone ever wants to ask me about how people in my life reacted to the book, and that’s no one’s damn business but my own.
Do you feel like that environment impacted your experience as a queer teenager? I remember in high school I read about a lesbian couple being attacked in Corpus Christi, a town not too far from Austin. Were there characters that were important to you or that you projected queerness onto as a kid? And when I found queerness and openness in musicals, well, that was where I put my heart. I won’t talk about other characters in the book, unless it’s me.
If I work hard enough, I will get there.” That kind of thinking was so familiar to me. I never understood why feeling that way would make people think I was less innocent. People are so afraid of sexuality, especially when it creeps into the LGBTQ spectrum. It had queer characters, it had sex, it had violence and honesty and youth all mixed together. In fact, after I finish answering these questions I need to practice some violin, I have a lesson in an hour! Are there boundaries you’re setting to cope with that?
But I forget that it’s the same because how I feel about my comics is so different from skating. To feel this work ethic inside me while also actually enjoying what I do… I want to wash that fear away, and I want kids to know that its normal to have desires. All the characters in that musical did something for me. I saw Rent at a local theater in Austin in middle school and that was the first time I got to see two women kiss. I will say that I’m very proud, that after only a month or so of playing, I sound like a really solid 6th grade player. I have a lot of boundaries, and I appreciate you asking about it.
We’re thrilled to have Tessa Gratton here with us today to talk about writing for Serial Box and writing queer characters, especially! What’s been the hardest about working on a story with other people? I knew it would be a challenge—and I remember telling Ellen as much on that very first phone call. I’d had a successful group fiction blog for 3 years (merryfates.com) and collaborated on two books about writing for teens.
And as soon as I have enough money to pay someone to run all my social media…
well, then I’ll have a lot more time to practice violin.
When I started making comics seriously in 12th grade I remember thinking to myself “I need to do this right.
I need to be great at this.” And that of course led me to think “I will be great at this. I was very conscious that I was putting that in SPINNING. I wanted people to know that I felt desire towards women and girls at the age of 6. Just because I was too young to have the words to explain how I felt doesn’t mean that I didn’t feel it. There’s a musical called Spring Awakening, and that changed everything for me.
Today, Serial Box kicks off Season 3 of Tremontaine, a wildly lush, queer, gorgeous fantasy told in a serialized format through their app.