Andy Peters
Andy Peters asked Christopher Rice:

I could swear I read once that you resigned as president of Lambda Literary to protest them changing the rules so that only LGBT authors could be eligible for the Lambda Literary Award. Am I crazy? Because in Googling it, I can find no evidence of this. Can you clarify what went down?

Christopher Rice I resigned because my beliefs were out of step with the majority of board members on a few related issues. I was actually in favor of the rule that only LGBT authors be eligible for Lammys. (At the time, I hadn't been exposed to the high quality romance novels written by non-LGBT authors and I might have felt differently if I had been.) What I wasn't in favor of were contradictory descriptions of what constituted an "LGBT book". I felt any author who lived an openly LGBT life should be eligible in their respective genre - mystery, romance, SF/horror - category, regardless of whether or not the main character in their novel was LGBT. So essentially I favored imposing one clear-cut restriction on potential nominees while lifting another set of restrictions I thought were contradictory and unworkable. The other board members didn't agree with me so I stepped aside. The result included hurt feelings and unfortunate e-mails, as there always is when there's an upset within a non-profit. It was critical time for the organization and a brutal time for authors in general.

That said, so much has changed in publishing since then, I'm not sure I'd make the same call today, especially in light of the wonderful high-quality work I've read by the many straight authors who write LGBT novels through publishers like Riptide and Samhain. I comment on this issue rarely because I have no desire to besmirch the organization or the awards, which continues to do some good work. But it would disingenuous for me to allow people to believe I resigned in protest over something I was actually in favor of and that's why I've posted a lengthy response here.

About Goodreads Q&A

Ask and answer questions about books!

You can pose questions to the Goodreads community with Reader Q&A, or ask your favorite author a question with Ask the Author.

See Featured Authors Answering Questions

Learn more