Literary Lesbians

Ali Liebegott

Ali Liebegott received a Lambda Literary Award in Best Lesbian Debut Fiction for her stunning epic about a runaway waitress, The Beautifully Worthless, in which she deftly negotiates a form she describes as being “in between poetry and fiction.” Hailed as a genius by Michelle Tea, Liebegott is the recipient of a Poetry Fellowship from New York Foundation for the Arts, has toured twice with Sister Spit, and has published work in numerous journals and anthologies including Lodestar Quarterly and Sinister Wisdom. She recently sat as a judge for The Lambda Literary Awards for Lesbian Poetry and guest edited Best Lesbian Erotica 2008with celebrated sex- pert Tristan Taormino. Having just published her novel, The IHOP Papers, Liebegott is now turning her attention to finishing her self-illustrated novel, The Crumb People,about “a post 9/11 obsessive duck feeder.”She explains that “a big part of the story is being glued into the radio after September 11th—and that mind-space of waiting for the other shoe to drop.” Liebegott has just begun a sec- ond epic, tentatively titled The Summer of Dead Birds. “Ithink that being a lesbian keeps me obscure and also allows me a set readership,” remarks Liebegott. “It influences my work in the same way being a GED teacher or a duck feeder or an ex-waitress does—in the way that it's one part of me that seeps in. It also makes memake choices about keeping things in that I think are politically necessary. I really think it's important to remember that queers are still victims of hate crimes and discrimination, and when that comes up naturally inmy work, I make a conscious effort to keep it in.” When asked if there's anything else she would like to share with GO readers, Liebegott, laughing, says, “Tell them not to give the ducks bread. Feed the ducks cracked corn instead.” –Joseph Keckler

Free Life Campaign 10/27