Sunday, 2 September 2018

More transgender literature

A lot of people write biographies about transition, their own or their partner's or parent's, and there are a lot of books that are very serious and supposedly academic about trans subjects, but there isn't so much fiction about transgender life.

Back in 2014 ( ) I wrote about Roz White whose series of novels and novellas about "The Sisterhood" continues to grow and, to judge by online reviews, continues to be popular. Roz observes trans life from the point of view of five trans women who range across the spectrum and their struggles and triumphs and outlooks are very real and natural. A couple of years ago a national book club chose "The Sisterhood" as its book for reading and Roz was guest of honour at their annual meeting. So many readers in that club previously knew little of trans life and are now not only better informed but very supportive. A triumph for the genre of trans fiction and a positive boost for the trans community.

I see there are one or two other trans novels available online (e.g. "If I Was Your Girl" by Meredith Russo) and short stories (e.g. "A Safe Girl to Love" by Casey Plett). I might order one or two and see if they are good reading.

But the book that caught my attention recently was "Julian is a Mermaid", a children's book by Jessica Love.

Plot spoiler: Julian sees people going off to the mermaid parade all dressed up in beautiful costumes and wants to be a mermaid too. He improvises a beautiful costume but then worries about what his grandmother might think. He needn't have worried as she helps him out with accessories and they go to the parade. It's not directly transgender but more a celebration of expressing one's individuality and has had very positive reviews online. The illustrations look beautiful too.

I'm hoping that even more writing about trans matters will move away from the purely personal experience of writers and into expressing trans lives in more creative ways that will appeal to the general public better.

Sue x


  1. Thanks for sharing those, Sue. While our two kids are a little old for such (beautiful) books, that message of "it's okay to be you" seems to be coming through loud and clear in modern books. I can only hope such an inclusive message helps kids be who they are and who they need to be.

    1. The young generation give me a lot of hope for a more tolerant and considerate future, and it's not often you hear an old person (or at least a trainee old person like me) say positive things about the young, which reflects the way that nastiness has been allowed to be the norm for too long. We need more books like Julian (and similar things in other media). Sue x

  2. Love it.... Thank you for sharing Sue.

    BTW, I have been trying to feminize my voice. I did a research and discovered that it is possible to feminize your voice without another excruciating surgery. I searched around and found this tutorial: (Sorry I don’t know if I am allowed to post links or not). It is a set of easy to follow at home exercises. It looks interesting and the testimonies are inspiring. I like to know your opinion, do you think it is useful? (I did study some research papers and their claim seems legit)

    1. Thanks for the comment, Bobby. You can post links as long as they are relevant (although that one doesn't seem to work). Sue x