When I’m not writing YA and MG books, I’m a volunteer with HiTOPS, an adolescent health education and advocacy center in Princeton, NJ. Right now I’m on the planning committee for the 12th Annual NJ GSA Forum, a conference for LGBTQIA* youth, advisors and allies co-sponsored by HiTOPS and GLSEN Central Jersey to be held on November 14th at Ocean Township High School. The conference offers workshops and panels on everything from coming out to your parents, to being leaders in the community, to being queer students of color. It’s an empowering event that attracts more than 400 attendees from all over the state. Many say they look forward to the conference all year. It’s not too late to register! And no youth will be turned away due to inability to pay.
This event is run on a micro budget and we depend on the goodwill of generous supporters. I asked authors, agents, editors and publishers to help me assemble a LGBTQIA* starter library and HOLY RAINBOW did they deliver!
I received more than 75 books–all of which will be distributed to students and schools in need. In no particular order, huge thanks to David Levithan, Tim Federle, David Gale, Rachel Cohn, Becky Albertelli, E. Lockhart, Jennifer E. Smith, Sara Farizan, Carolyn Mackler, Bill Konigsberg, Holly Black, Stephanie Perkins, Elizabeth Eulberg, Alex Gino, Jennifer Laughran, Lauren Myracle, Karen Healy, Ellen Wittlinger, Alex Sanchez, Bil Wright, Arin Andrews, Francesca Lia Block, James Howe, Benjamin Alire Saenz, Ami Polonsky, Michelle Hodkin, Cassandra Clare, Libba Bray, Barry Goldblatt, Tricia Ready, Jo Knowles, Sara Ryan, Emily M. Danforth, Christopher Barzak and Robin Talley for writing, working on (and donating!) books that will make a difference in the lives of LGBTQIA* youth.