I’ve got to admit, I’ve been to come up with inspiration for things to write about here this last week. For starters, I really haven’t been reading, well, anything (except for the same picture books over and over again) in the last two months. I keep finding myself staring guiltily at the book I’ve left unfinished, without actually picking it up or opening it.
It’s Daniel Mallory Ortberg’s Something That May Shock and Discredit You, a book I’d been anticipating for months before its release, since reading an excerpt in Slate (where Ortberg writes the Dear Prudence advice column). From what I have read so far, it both is and isn’t what I hoped it would be: a strange mix of niche literary analysis/satire (too niche for me and my only-a-minor-in-English-Lit, it turns out) and autobiographical musings straight from the depths of gender transition.
If that happens to sound like its right up your alley, while we don’t have any digital copies available, as of this writing there is a copy sitting in each of our resource libraries, so you may be able to snag one with a curbside pickup appointment!
But today, as I stared at the book, I started thinking about many of my other favourite transgender artists (across many forms of media!), and I figured why not boost some of them?
I’ve written before about my love for Ivan Coyote, a beautifully talented storyteller and novelist from the Yukon, and am pleased to say we’ve 7 of their books available on Hoopla. They’re all wonderful, full of unbelievable compassion, grace, and love for humanity – things we could probably all use a little more of these days!
But if you’re like me, and reading just isn’t happening right now, how about an awesome trans musician? Let’s feel some feelings together!
I truly believe that Against Me!‘s existence has helped revitalize punk and keep it relevant. And of course I’d be remiss if I didn’t specifically mention the album Transgender Dysphoria Blues (such a cathartic album that came at an important time in my life, wherein the band’s lead singer Laura Jane Grace works out a lot of her feelings around being a newly out trans woman). Against Me! balances emotional rawness and honesty with real talent in an explosive way.
But maybe you want an even more immersive sensory experience?
I’m talking TV! We’re all watching too much anyway, right? Right??
…OK, I have to admit I’m struggling to find tv shows in our digital catalog I want to highlight that prominent involvement from transgender directors or actors – though there are plenty of things I’d love to point you to if I could. If you get a chance to watch Sense8, you really should! It’s a stunning sci-fi thriller series with a fabulous ensemble cast, including one of my favourite trans actors, Jamie Clayton. And of course, it was written and directed by two trans women.
For now, I’ll settle for letting you all know that the 2015 miniseries based on Terry Pratchett’s The Color of Magic is also on hoopla. I don’t know of any trans people who were involved in making it, but statistically there probably was at least one on the crew, and even if they didn’t have a prominent job, this has a truly blockbuster cast and I’m sure its a ton of fun anyway. I’m going to go watch it right now, in fact!