Lesléa Newman’s most recent work, October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard, (Candlewick Press, 2012), is a cycle of 68 poems exploring the cultural, political, and emotional impact of Matthew Shepard’s murder.


Her groundbreaking book, Heather Has Two Mommies, (published in 1990), was the first children’s book to portray lesbian families in an open and positive way.  She has written over 60 books for children, young adults, and adults, including A Letter to Harvey MilkNobody’s MotherHachiko WaitsWrite from the HeartThe Boy Who Cried FabulousThe Best Cat in the WorldFelicia’s Favorite StoryToo Far Away to TouchSaturday Is PattydayMommy, Mama, and Me, and Daddy, Papa, and Me, and many more.  Her books have dealt with a wide range of issues, including lesbian identity, Jewish identity and heritage, AIDS, eating disorders, and sexual abuse.

Lesléa has received fellowships from the Massachusetts Artists Fellowship Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, and she has won the Highlights for Children Fiction Writing Award, and the James Baldwin Award for Cultural Achievement.  She has also been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and nine of her books have been Lambda Literary Award finalists.

She has taught at the Stonecoast MFA Program, and at Clark University, and she is currently on the faculty of Spalding University’s Brief Residency MFA Program.


This talk is made possible by the support of the Feminist Studies Program, The Office of Counseling Services, the English Department, and the Writer-in-Residence Speaker’s Series.


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