elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Michael Denneny (born March 2, 1943)

Michael Denneny (born March 2, 1943), working for St. Martin's Press, was one of the first editors to publish openly gay and lesbian material in the early 1970s, and he bought the highly literary, experimental novel and enthusiastically likened it to Angels in America. He planned to market it as a "gay novel," but he discovered that his straight colleagues "wondered why I thought of Angels in America as a "gay play" - they just saw it as an award-winning play about AIDS. So we decided to market KoolAIDS as a "literary" novel." Although the few reviews it received were positive, its sales were disappointing.

In a move that shocked industry insiders, editor Michael Denneny on March 1 abruptly left St. Martin's Press, where he had worked (with a brief intermission at Crown Books) since the mid 1970s. Denneny (along with the late editor Bill Whitehead at Dutton) played the leading role in introducing mainstream publishing to gay and lesbian books. Among the many authors that Denneny edited were Randy Shilts, Ethan Mordden, Christopher Davis, John Fox, Allen Barnett, Paul Monette, Nisa Donnelly, Rabih Alameddine, and Ernesto Maestre.

He also edited: The Christopher Street Reader, First Love/Last Love: New Fiction from Christopher Street, The Perv: Stories, Decent Passions: Real Stories about Love, Lovers: Story of Two Men, The view from Christopher street.

Source: http://andrejkoymasky.com/liv/fam/biod2/denney01.html

Michael Denneny, 1988, by Robert Giard (http://beinecke.library.yale.edu/dl_crosscollex/brbldl_getrec.asp?fld=img&id=1123770)
American photographer Robert Giard is renowned for his portraits of American poets and writers; his particular focus was on gay and lesbian writers. Some of his photographs of the American gay and lesbian literary community appear in his groundbreaking book Particular Voices: Portraits of Gay and Lesbian Writers, published by MIT Press in 1997. Giard’s stated mission was to define the literary history and cultural identity of gays and lesbians for the mainstream of American society, which perceived them as disparate, marginal individuals possessing neither. In all, he photographed more than 600 writers. (http://beinecke.library.yale.edu/digitallibrary/giard.html)

Further Readings:

Eminent Outlaws: The Gay Writers Who Changed America by Christopher Bram
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Twelve; 1 edition (February 2, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0446563137
ISBN-13: 978-0446563130
Amazon: Eminent Outlaws: The Gay Writers Who Changed America

In the years following World War II, a small group of gay writers established themselves as literary power players, fueling cultural changes that would resonate for decades to come, and transforming the American literary landscape forever.

In EMINENT OUTLAWS, novelist Christopher Bram brilliantly chronicles the rise of gay consciousness in American writing. Beginning with a first wave of major gay literary figures-Tennessee Williams, Gore Vidal, Truman Capote, Allen Ginsberg, and James Baldwin-he shows how (despite criticism and occasional setbacks) these pioneers set the stage for new generations of gay writers to build on what they had begun: Armistead Maupin, Edmund White, Tony Kushner, and Edward Albee among them.

Weaving together the crosscurrents, feuds, and subversive energies that provoked these writers to greatness, EMINENT OUTLAWS is a rich and essential work. With keen insights, it takes readers through fifty years of momentous change: from a time when being a homosexual was a crime in forty-nine states and into an age of same-sex marriage and the end of Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

The Lost Library: Gay Fiction Rediscovered by Tom Cardamone
Paperback: 232 pages
Publisher: Haiduk Press (March 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 097146863X
ISBN-13: 978-0971468634
Amazon: The Lost Library: Gay Fiction Rediscovered

The Lost Library: Gay Fiction Rediscovered, edited by Tom Cardamone, includes appreciations by 28 contemporary writers of significant gay novels and short story collections now out of print. The Lost Library includes an essay on reprints of gay literature by Philip Clark. Published in March 2010, it features a cover illustration by Mel Odom.

The Lost Library won the San Francisco Book Festival's gay category for best book of the Spring season and was named one of the 10 Best nonfiction books of 2010 in Richard Labonté's Book Marks column.

More Particular Voices at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Particular Voices

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Tags: essayist: michael denneny, particular voices

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