Creative writing by trans artists is flourishing in exciting ways, says Cat Fitzpatrick, founder of the Trans Poets Workshop NYC.
From a growing number of independent trans-focused presses, to trans-centered book tours to a small boom in novels and poetry, trans writers are seeing their work spark more conversations and reach wider audiences.
"Right now is a really exciting time to be a trans writer," Fitzpatrick says on the workshop's Facebook group, and no doubt its members agree. A core group meets monthly at New York City's LGBT Center and invites any other self-identified trans poets to join them. During each session they workshop a piece from one poet in a "structured way … so as to produce the most useful possible feedback," Fitzpatrick explains to The Advocate.
Recently, the group released the first issue of its zine, titled You Have Ripped Your Dick Off, which will continue to be published biannually. The zine, whose release event was held last week at Manhattan's Bureau of General Services - Queer Division bookstore, is "partly [a] contribution to the audibility of trans voices during Pride week," says Fitzpatrick. "And also because it sounded like fun."
In celebration of their achievements, The Advocate asked members of the Trans Poets Workshop NYC — including Charles Theonia, J Mase III, Cat Fizpatrick, Olympia Perez, May Adriene Byrne, Andy "Rocket" Izenson, Alyssa Harley, Francisco Salas Pérez, Kay Ulanday Barrett, Maxe Crandall, Phoenix Natasha Russell, Charli Cleland, and Buzz Slutsky — to each share one poem from their collections.
Click through the pages below to read some of poetry's refreshing new trans voices.