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Lesbian Game Changer: Franco Stevens

09 Aug Posted by in • Robin Lowey | Comments Off on Lesbian Game Changer: Franco Stevens
Lesbian Game Changer: Franco Stevens

Game Changers: Lesbians You Should Know About is a richly-designed and important book about lesbians who have made significant contributions to LGBTQ culture over the past 30 years. I’m creating this book as a resource for students as a result of The FAIR Act, a recent law which requires the inclusion of LGBT History and Social Studies in the California public school curriculum. Copies of this book will be donated to libraries and schools throughout the Bay Area.

“I was a clerk in A Different Light Bookstore, a gay and lesbian bookstore in the heart of the Castro, San Francisco’s gay neighborhood. Women would come into the store and ask for a magazine about the lives and loves of lesbians. I would complain with them about the lack of such a publication when one day it dawned on me, I should be the one to create it. If you want things to change, you must take action instead of just complaining that someone else should. I hung a sign in the window of the bookstore that read, “writers and photographers wanted for new lesbian magazine.” I got about 300 calls in the first month and I knew other women wanted the magazine as much as I did. I held our first meeting in the apartment above the bookstore and it was standing room only. I explained my vision to the group. I wanted a magazine that I could be proud to leave on my coffee table, even if my Mom happened to walk by. I wanted it to be color and glossy like a “real” magazine. I wanted it to talk about our lives as lesbians, to be proud and unashamed of who we were, and whom we loved. I wanted it to cover news, politics, art and entertainment but first and foremost, I wanted it to be a celebration of the women shaping our community. I wanted to send a clear message, breaking the stereotypes about lesbians, even the ones we imposed upon ourselves. And I wanted it to say “LESBIAN” on the front cover. The women stood silently, listening to my vision. I could feel the excitement building as I spoke and I knew that they felt just as strongly as I did. I know that our time had come. We didn’t even have enough money for a computer. But, we were crafty. Our entire staff were volunteers and our designer was still in art school. We would sneak into her classroom after hours and on weekends to edit and layout the magazine. When I held the first issue of the magazine in my hands, I felt as though I had given birth. It was one of the greatest moments of my life.”

Check out our Buy One We Donate One campaign on Indiegogo!

We’ve already raised $13,500 of our $20,000 goal to get the book printed and in the hands of students. Plans are in order to get the book to press by mid-September and into the schools by the end of the year. And mark your calendars for our exciting launch party coming in early November! Learn more at HERE

©2017 Robin Lowey

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