Lambda Literary Award Finalist

Today I found out my book The Invisible Orientation is a finalist for this year’s Lambda Literary Award! I’m one of eight in the LGBT Nonfiction category:

  1. An American Queer: The Amazon Trail by Lee Lynch
  2. Hold Tight Gently: Michael Callen, Essex Hemphill, and the Battlefield of AIDS by Martin Duberman
  3. The Invisible Orientation: An Introduction to Asexuality by Julie Sondra Decker
  4. Nevirapine and the Quest to End Pediatric AIDS by Rebecca J. Anderson
  5. Robert Gober: The Heart Is Not a Metaphor by Hilton Als, Ann Temkin, Claudia Carson, Robert Gober, Paulina Pobocha, Christian Scheidemann, and the Museum of Modern Art
  6. Sexplosion: From Andy Warhol to A Clockwork Orange, How a Generation of Pop Rebels Broke All the Taboos by Robert Hofler
  7. The Transgender Archives: Foundations for the Future by Aaron H Devor
  8. The Up Stairs Lounge Arson: Thirty-Two Deaths in a New Orleans Gay Bar, June 24, 1973 by Clayton Delery-Edwards

I’m especially excited to be listed here because I entered in the category of LGBT Nonfiction due to having nothing more appropriate to choose–and my getting shortlisted shows that my choice was the right one. I was a little worried that I would be thought unwelcome or even that my applying would be deemed offensive by the judges, being that the book’s content isn’t centrally focused on any content that is L, G, B, or T (though there is of course discussion of where people who do identify as LGBT intersect with and overlap with asexual identities). Even if I’m not chosen as a winner, being listed as a finalist does feel a little bit like my community is getting closer to being broadly accepted under this umbrella, and that is an incredible feeling.

The winners will be announced in a ceremony on June 1, 2015. I have to decide whether I’m going to attend. 🙂

Article: “Asexual, Aromantic, Partnerless, Childless – and Happy”

The smart and quirky literary/blog zine Drunk Monkeys accepted my short piece “Asexual, Aromantic, Partnerless, Childless – and Happy.”

It’s a personal essay about how other people’s obsession with changing me has actually been more of an impediment to my happiness than anything these folks can attribute to my lifestyle and inclinations.

Check out the article to read my perspective!

Review (Prismatic Entanglements): The Invisible Orientation

Elizabeth of Prismatic Entanglements has offered a thoughtful, comprehensive, gently critical review for The Invisible Orientation.

An excerpt:

This is the Asexuality 101 book. It’s for laypersons, but I think it should also be required reading for professionals looking to better serve their asexual clients. It’s a starting point for real understanding, and one that outsiders looking in just can’t provide.

Books are prone to becoming quickly outdated as societal understanding deepens, and even less than a year after its release, there are already some passages beginning to show their age. But that’s more about how fast our high-level community discourse moves! On that level, it makes sense to forgive the subtle nuances rooted in older discussions. Here, we find the community’s foundation, preserved by someone who has been part of it much longer than most of us.

On such solid ground, we can now take steps toward further progress.

Please read the full review on Prismatic Entanglements here.

Review (Evening Assam): The Invisible Orientation

Evening Assam, Morning Pu-Er gave me a really nice review for my book on Tumblr. An excerpt:

More than anything this book arms the reader with the vocabulary, and confidence, to start in depth discussion and exploration of their (or their loved one’s) asexuality.  I can think of no better place to start.

The writing manages to be simple and clear without ever patronizing, even when addressing all manner of different groups.  Decker maps out an impressive understanding of those identifying on the asexual spectrum that gives context desperately needed for such an underrepresented topic.

Read the whole review on the blog post!

 

Article: “Asexuality and the Health Professional”

I published my first blog in Psychology Today, where I’m now installed as a blogger. (See my profile there if you like!)

Because of the nature of the magazine, I decided to tackle health professionals’ responsibility to asexual clients and how they should be educated on this subject if they’re going to treat us.

Please read “Asexuality and the Health Professional.”

Interview: Yorokobu

A Spanish magazine called Yorokobu interviewed me for an article called “Los asexuales reivindican su hueco” (“The Asexuals Claim Their Space”).

Jaled Abdelrahim sent me a list of interview questions in English, which I also answered in English, and then the translated version was published on the site.

You can read it here.

My friend Claudia took a crack at a more accurate translation than Google Translate can provide, which you can read below the cut.

Continue reading

Interview: Maclean’s

I have a short interview in the December 22, 2014 issue of Maclean’s, a Canadian national weekly news magazine. The article about me is on page 75 of the issue, under “Help,” and its title is “No sex please—it’s boring.” (Not sure who titles these things! I wouldn’t know if sex is boring, though I guess conflating “boring” with “not interesting to me” isn’t that far off.)

macleans

The limited preview on the Maclean’s site

The interview is in the print magazine–which is only sold in Canada–and you can buy the digital edition through the newsstand online here. An online version was later posted here.

The article is pretty super basic with one page of content. It has some nice little tidbits and didn’t sensationalize asexuality or make fun of me or anything. But as is almost always the case with media articles that do not let me check them before they print/post, there are little things I would have preferred to be presented differently, most notably the sentence “Just as some people are born gay, straight or bisexual, Decker says she was born without the desire to have sex.” I do not in fact say that. Because I hate the “born this way” narrative for many reasons, so I’m not keen on being represented as making that claim as if those are the words I’d use or the sentiment I’d express.

There’s also a place where it quotes me as saying some asexual people do decide to have sex and then they finish the sentence for me by claiming it’s “to please a partner,” and I think that is misleading, though of course it’s sometimes true. It also kinda oversimplifies the whole “asexuality is not trauma, it’s not hormones,” etc., but that’s not surprising given the space allotted.

They also made reference to the Apositive site and a post on it, but misspelled its URL as “appositive.org.” It’s supposed to have one P, not two. Maybe spellcheck decided to hit it and no one caught it. The print version has this issue but the online version does not.

My own book is secretly in the photograph, sitting on my desk in the background under some papers. That’s kind of meta.

Review (An Un-Calibrated Centrifuge): The Invisible Orientation

A lovely post about asexuality books by a blogger named Alison has been posted. Alison lists three books on asexuality and discusses their contents briefly, naming mine the favorite. I’m so flattered!

Read the compare and contrast:

Three Books on Asexuality: An Un-Calibrated Centrifuge

Of the three books on Asexuality that I’ve read this year, this one was my favorite. It’s written in very clear, accessible language. It covers a variety of topics and issues. It’s a great starting point for anyone looking to learn more about asexuality.

The book covers Asexuality 101, asexual experiences (this section is very inclusive), myths of asexuality, a section specifically for asexual people (and any questioning people), and friends/family/acquaintances of asexual people. And I haven’t checked them all out yet, but the resources at the end of the book look great.