I have published thirteen books in all– three memoirs, three novels, a collection of short stories, and six young adult books, four of them published under a pseudonym. My work is also contained in five anthologies. Information of all kinds–excerpts, reviews, “deleted scenes” and other stuff–relating to each of the titles is available by clicking on the photos of the book jackets below. (With the exception of the pseudonymed young adult novels, about which We Shall Speak No More.) I also publish a lot of nonfiction, most recently in the New York Times and Salon, which you can read on a separate page here.
My next published book will be the second of the young adult series, Falcon Quinn, coming in May of 2011. The Falcon Quinn project has its own web site, falconquinn.com. The cover was done by legendary illustrator Brandon Dorman (of GOOSEBUMPS fame). On the cover here can see Falcon, a young man who has been sent to the Academy for Monsters, in order to learn how to imitate a human being and thus survive in the world. And raising the fundamental question: Is it better to imitate something you’re not, in order to survive? Or to embrace your true self, if your true self is a monster? Falcon, our hero, is turning into something–but we don’t know what. You’ll also see the tangled tentacles of the Academy’s Vice Principal, Mr. Hake,who is, at least part of the time, the TERRIBLE KRACKEN. Also, Falcon’s friend Pearl, a very small CHUPAKABRA (“I am– the famous goatsucker of Peru! We shall be friends!”) Anyway, the Falcon Quinn stuff will come to dominate my creative life in the next few years, and this is the first taste. More on the way, when we go live with Falconquinn.com!
In book two, FALCON QUINN AND THE CRIMSON VAPOR, our hero continues to struggle with the question of his identity. What does it mean to be the thing he is? With a father who is a monster and a mother who is the queen of the monster-slayers, with whom should Falcon’s allegiances lie? And what of Megan Crofton, last seen at the end of Book I, hopelessly trapped in a windmill on the Island of Guardians? With the help of his friends Johnny Frankenstein, Max the Sasquatch, and Pearl the Chupakabra– as well as a new cast of Young Guardians– Falcon continues to find his way.
I’m Looking Through You: Growing Up Haunted is a memoir published in 2008 by Broadway/Doubleday. It tells the story of growing up in an allegedly haunted house; it’s also an examination of what it means to be “haunted.”
She’s Not There: A Life in Two Genders is a memoir published in 2003 by Broadway/Doubleday. It tells the story of changing from James to Jenny; it also follows the arc of gender as it affected two of my most important relationships– that with my wife Deedie, whom I call “Grace” in the book, and that with novelist Richard Russo, as our friendship morphed from one between two men to one between a man and a woman. She’s Not There was a national bestseller, and was one of the first bestselling works by a transgender American. It is has been translated into many languages, and is currently in its tenth printing.
There are six anthologies containing work of mine out there at present.
The newest one is TRUTH & DARE, edited by Liz Miles, “Love Life and Falling on Your Face.” This is a collection of stories for adolescent readers about taking chances and taking the risk to live an authentic life. IT GETS BETTER, edited by Dan Savage, and published by Penguin. This is part of the project launched on YouTube in the fall of 2010 in response to the suicides of a number of young GLBT people. The It Gets Better project attempts to send a message to young people that their lives will improve, and that they should have hope. A separate entry for that project, complete with video, is in my blog here. The anthology contains my story, “In the Early Morning Rain,” which is a slightly revised version of a tale first told in She’s Not There, about a trip I took to Nova Scotia, where I hiked to the top of a cliff and looked down at the sea and thought, well?
The Book of Dads: On the Joys, Perils, and Humiliations of Modern Fatherhood contains the story “The Sleepwalker,” a piece that was published, in edited-down form, in the “Modern Love” column of the New York Times. Love is a Four Letter Word contains the story “Trans,” about the way being transgender affected all sorts of romantic relationships over the course of my life. A nice review of the anthology that highlighted my story appeared in the Daily Beast; you can read the review here. How Beautiful the Oridinary: Twelve Stories of Identity is a LGBT anthology for young readers containing my story, “The Missing Person.”. And Jonathan Ames‘ Sexual Metamorphosis is an anthology of trans autobiography across history, and it concludes with an excerpt from She’s Not There. All of these works are availalbe at Amazon, or at your local independent bookseller.
Getting In was published by Warner Books in 1998. It tells the story of four teenagers and three adults–an extended and highly dysfunctional family–as they go on the “college tour” throughout New England in an oversized Winnebago. Getting In, amazingly, has remained under nearly-constant option for film since its publication. Will it ever see the inside of a theatre? Hope springs eternal.
The Constellations was published by Simon and Schuster in 1994. It’s a sequel to The Planets, and continues the story of some of the residents of Centralia, Pennsylvania as they join rock bands, taste laytex brains, kidnap dogs, and search for meaning.
The Planets was published by Poseidon Press in 1991, and came out as a Vintage Contemporary in paperback the following year. The novel tells the story of a group of nine residents of Centralia, Pennsylvania, where a mine fire has been burning, below the surface of the earth, since 1962. The characters are drawn into each others orbits, and grapple with the gravitational forces of love and bedlam.
Remind Me to Murder You Later was published by Johns Hopkins University Press in 1988. A collection of short stories, this was my first published book. It contains a wide range of strange tales, including “Jimmy Durante Lost in Antarctica,” and “Thirty Six Miracles of Lyndon Johnson.”