Three things I want you to walk away with after reading this blog entry.
1.) You could be a winner. Twice!
2.) I am a woman writer who just happens to be named Clifford.
3.) Victory Editions is da bomb.
The first item is pretty straightforward. I’m offering a book giveaway to anyone who comments on this blog before August 26th, the official one week anniversary of “Rest Home Runaways.” (Paperback or e-book, winner’s choice.) That’s right, make any comment and I’ll enter you in the giveaway. Go to my brand spanking new website, enter a comment there, by the same date, under any of the blog entries, and you get a second chance at winning. This is my way of saying thank you to all my readers, because without readers, well, writing would still be fun, but not as fun. So comment away. And, even if you don’t win, know that I, Clifford Henderson, will consider you a winner anyway, because you read fiction, and people who read fiction are, in my book, winners all.
Second thing on my agenda: Yes, I am a woman named Clifford. I submit this photo as proof.
Some of you may have seen my video rant a few years back concerning some readers’ reluctance to read a lesfic novel they thought was written by a man. (It will also give you the reason for my unusual name.) Apparently, the video didn’t work that well; I’m still getting emails from readers who confess they haven’t read me for years because they thought I was one of them. Which I get. I’ve had my mistrustful moments in regard to men writing about lesbians. Too often (notice I’m not saying always) they get it wrong, writing their own fantasies instead of stories that reflect the real deal. But honestly, with so many writers using nomme de plumes (a.k.a. pen names), unless you’ve done a little research, you can’t really be sure of a writer’s gender. Many publishers actually encourage their writers to write under a pen name of an opposite gender because they feel it will help sales. I tell you, the complexities of gender identification are getting more interesting by the minute. But then, like me, you’ve no doubt noticed that this younger generation doesn’t seem to hold the same biases we did, they don’t seem limited by the same restrictions. Shoot. The other day I was standing in line at our local bagelry and saw, among all the band and theater posters, a taped-up sign proclaiming in bold letters: GENDER IS DEAD! Or maybe you are of that younger generation. In which case I say, “Carry on. This world needs you.”
Now, onto the third thing: Victory Editions. Don’t know what that is? It’s Bold Strokes Books’ General Fiction imprint, or what I like to call their Mainstream Lesbian Fiction imprint. Doesn’t that have a snappy sound? What’s an imprint? Imprints are like categories, and most publishers have them. They help the reader find what they like to read. What you will find in BSB’s Victory Editions are lots of page turning stories about the lives of interesting, fun, troubled, triumphant, kick-ass, tender, thoughtful, old, young, and every kind of lesbian you can think up. Sometimes they feature a little romance, sometimes a little action, but always they always offer up a great read. You can spot them by the little logo on the spine of the book. ? Me, I write what I call “the extraordinary lives of ordinary people” and I hope you will check one out. If you’re lucky, you might even win one.