31st Annual Lambda Literary Awards

Barbara Smith was awarded with the Publishing Professional Award
Barbara Smith was awarded with the Publishing Professional Award for her services to our community’s culture over a number of decades, particularly helping women of color break into the publishing world

Congratulating the winners of the nation’s leading LGBTQ literary organization’s awards “the Lammys.”

The NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, New York City, was once more the setting for a glittering night in which those who labor over the blank page and publish progressive LGBTQ fiction and non-fiction are rewarded for their efforts in bringing the image and consciousness of our community into the written word.

The Lambda Literary Awards have been honoring the excellence in LGBTQ literature since 1989, and this year was no exception with a slew of books that reflect “our community’s continuously evolving brilliance” — in the words of Lambda’s new executive director Sue Landers.

The night began with red carpet appearances by literary luminaries and their guests and continued with pre-show cocktails in which old friends and new mingled over beverages and bites and shared support for the nominees.

Emceed by the ever-delightful and irreverent trans-genre artist and performer Mx Justin Vivian Bond, who amused the audience with witticism and observations, both inspiring and ironic, the night had many triumphs in store for queer women and lesbians.

Barbara Smith was awarded with the Publishing Professional Award for her services to our community’s culture over a number of decades, particularly helping women of color break into the publishing world through founding Kitchen Table Press, a history that was illuminated in a moving tribute by lesbian feminist poet Cheryl Clarke.

The Visionary Award was presented to journalist and intellectual Masha Gessen, who has written extensively on LGBTQ rights worldwide, and several books, including on the rise of totalitarianism in Russia.

Filmmaker and Carol producer Christine Vachon presented the Lesbian & Gay Mystery Award. The Bisexual Fiction & Nonfiction Award was presented by Abandon Me author Melissa Febos.

Here is the complete list of winners:


Lesbian Fiction
The Tiger Flu by Larissa Lai (Arsenal Pulp Press)

Gay Fiction
Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead (Arsenal Pulp Press)

Bisexual Fiction
Disoriental by Négar Djavadi and translated by Tina Kover (Europa Editions)

Transgender Fiction
Little Fish by Casey Plett (Arsenal Pulp Press)


Lesbian Poetry
Each Tree Could Hold a Noose or a House by Ru Puro, formerly Nina Puro (New Issues Poetry & Prose)

Gay Poetry
Indecency by Justin Phillip Reed (Coffee House Press)

Bisexual Poetry (*new category for the 31st Annual Lammys)
We Play a Game by Duy Doan (Yale University Press)

Transgender Poetry
lo terciario / the tertiary by Raquel Salas Rivera (Timeless, Infinite Light)


Bisexual Nonfiction
Out of Step: A Memoir by Anthony Moll (Mad Creek Books / The Ohio State University Press)

Transgender Nonfiction
Histories of the Transgender Child by Julian Gill-Peterson (University of Minnesota Press)

LGBTQ Nonfiction
Looking for Lorraine: The Radiant and Radical Life of Lorraine Hansberry by Imani Perry (Beacon Press)


Lesbian Memoir/Biography
Chronology by Zahra Patterson (Ugly Duckling Presse)

Gay Memoir/Biography
No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America by Darnell L. Moore (Bold Type Books)


Lesbian Mystery
A Study in Honor: A Novel by Claire O’Dell (HarperCollins / HarperVoyager)

Gay Mystery
Late Fees: A Pinx Video Mystery by Marshall Thornton (Kenmore Books)


Lesbian Romance
Beowulf For Cretins: A Love Story by Ann McMan (Bywater Books)

Gay Romance
Crashing Upwards by S.C. Wynne (self-published)


LGBTQ Anthology
As You Like It: The Gerald Kraak Anthology Volume II edited and published by The Other Foundation, Jacana Media (FICTION)

Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture edited by Roxane Gay. Published by HarperCollins / Harper Perennial (NONFICTION)

LGBTQ Children’s/Young Adult
Hurricane Child by Kacen Callender, formerly Kheryn Callender (Scholastic / Scholastic Press)

Draw the Circle by Mashuq Mushtaq Deen (Dramatists Play Service)

LGBTQ Erotica
Miles & Honesty in SCFSX! by Blue Delliquanti and Kazimir Lee (self-published)

LGBTQ Graphic Novel
The Lie and How We Told It by Tommi Parrish (Fantagraphics Books)

LGBTQ Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Horror
The Breath of the Sun by Isaac R. Fellman (Aqueduct)

LGBTQ Studies
Toxic Silence: Race, Black Gender Identity, and Addressing the Violence Against Black Transgender Women in Houston by William T. Hoston (Peter Lang International Academic Publishers)