Some trans stories from Canada that might be of interest to trans and non-binary communities. This section was only created November 2020, as I debated for a long time whether I had the time or ability to adequately cover such a large, diverse country. The focus here is on stories not generally reported in the mainstream media. If you’re tuning in from somewhere in the country with a story you’d like to share, I’d love to hear it!
Transgender Publishing in B.C.
I once wrote an article about trans publishers that started like this: “Trans people have always been pamphleteers. We have a tradition of cheaply produced fiction and informational publications. When we were ignored by the mainstream, or treated with condescension by professional publishing houses, a few brave trans people were communicating to us through – it must be admitted – largely unsophisticated books, booklets and journals.” The miracle of trans publishing, I wrote, is that the importance of our stories far outweighed the books’ somewhat amateurish presentation. (My biggest complaint was the almost universal lack of a proper title page.)
Now that professional publishers have discovered and even solicit books from trans authors, and there is no end to trans folks telling their stories on the internet, I assumed trans publishers would have died out. Imagine my delight at discovering several alive and well in British Columbia and aligned under the website Transgender Publishing. The books have all the hallmarks of the old trans publishing I knew and loved, which is to say the content overrides the presentation.
I just ordered Dancing the Dialectic: True Tales of a Transgender Trailblazer, by Rupert Raj. As one of Canada’s earliest trans activists, Raj’s story would surely be of interest to major publishers. How great that he chose to go with a transgender publishing house! Their books are available through Amazon, but I ordered my copy through their website. It will take longer, but I’d rather send a few extra dollars to my trans brothers and sisters than Jeff Bezos.
I’ll review the book after I’ve read it and add it to the incipient Ottawa Trans Library after. And if it doesn’t have a proper title page, I’ll let you know!