Pride Month

June is almost here, so I want to talk about what queerness means to me. For me, being queer is about love and it’s about having a community. When I learned about the lesbian nautical star tattoo—a small tattoo that lesbians would get on their wrist when being gay was still a federal offense, to help them connect with each other—I wanted to get a similar one. It was eye-opening to hear about. Despite the fact that it’s a lot safer to be out now in some places, things are ever-shifting. That’s why I love reading about queer history. It’s also important to support other people in the community who have wildly different life experiences. Everyone has a different view of their own gender and sexuality, even people who are 100% cis and straight, so it’s important to uplift your friends and show compassion. And if you’re a straight author writing about a queer relationship, especially a historical one, the #1 piece of advice I can give you is to do your homework. Talk to gay men and lesbians. Talk to your bisexual sister-in-law. Read queer zines from the time period and geographic location you’re writing about. And most importantly, treat their relationship the way you would treat a straight couple! The best queer couples in books are realistic ones, and well-written romance is what makes me want to keep reading. Not to derail my pride month blog post to make it about romance novels, but I’m mostly just saying to try your best.

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