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Escape into a great book!

Amy Leibowitz books escapism favorite reads

Right now, things are rough for a lot of people. The real world isn’t treating folks kindly. While I will always advocate for facing our problems head-on, sometimes we need to recharge in order to do that.

And here’s where books come in.

We all need a place we can go when things get rough, somewhere we can slip away and immerse ourselves in a story different from our own. For some people, that’s Hallmark Christmas movies. My go-to has always been books.

Even when the books are rooted in reality...

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LGBTQ+ antagonism in a story?

Amy Leibowitz bisexuality books queer antagonism writing

I recently finished a novel in which the author addressed bi-antagonism directly between the two main characters. When I went to post my review, I was surprised to find that a few people found that aspect of the book distasteful. It led me to wonder to what extent we should include queer antagonism as part of a story and in what ways it should appear.

That wasn’t the only type of antagonism I’ve read lately. It came on the heels of finishing a book in which both characters are gay, but one of...

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Stylistic choices in writing

Amy Leibowitz writing advice

Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of dislike for certain stylistic choices made by authors. Two of the big ones are use of present tense and writing in first person. As an avid reader of many styles and genres, I can’t imagine rejecting a book based on narrative style. It baffles me how anyone can say that it’s an automatic DNF if they buy a book and discover it’s written in first person, present tense, or (horror of horrors) both.

I have written exactly three things in present tense: one short story and...

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Writing LGBTQIA+ characters well

Amy Leibowitz lgbtqia books writing advice

I read this article recently, an answer to a question on Quora: What do fiction authors get wrong when writing LGBTQ+ characters? Aside from the fact that the response is one long advert for this person’s book, it doesn’t really answer the question. Instead, it’s a long list of ways that the novel’s LGBTQ+ people are cheating on each other and who the story “represents.”

It stood out to me that the majority of the person’s story seems to be about love triangles and/or cheating....

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Heck, Yeah! Bi Visibility Day!

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I thought for a long time about what to write for Bisexual Visibility Day. I’ve read a couple of great pieces so far, ones that analyze film or literature; ones where someone has come out as bisexual; ones talking about bisexual family life.

Not wanting to repeat anything that’s already being said, I simply couldn’t identify a good topic: something relevant and exciting and cheerfully BISEXUAL.

I mean, my life as a bi parent of queer kids is...kinda average. I live in the suburbs with...

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