LGBTQIA+ Voices at the Highlights Foundation

LGBTQ+ Voices Book Covers
Rainbow Retreat Group photo

Our Goal

To inspire children through story by amplifying the voices of LGBTQIA+ authors & illustrators.

Our Action:

Craft and education, community-building, and resources and support for LGBTQIA+ creatives and professionals in and around the children’s book industry.

Testimonials from LGBTQIA+ community

“I soon realized I’d made the right decision. The enthusiasm of Rob, Lesléa, and everyone else in the class was so inspiring. As were the books. The vast possibilities for queer picture books spread before me. Weddings, fairytales, gender romps playing with clothes and pronouns, and much more. Stories told by buildings, stories told by cake toppers. Kyle Lukoff’s presentation got me thinking about books that are not so much about being queer as they are about queer people and their lives. Queer joy, not queer problems.” (C. Rowen MacCarald)

I met my agent, Linda Epstein, there! What a heavenly meeting! Together she has helped me develop my writing, and found a home for my next Anthology: Everything Under The Moon: Fairy tales in a queerer light (Affirm Press, Oct 2023). It’s only a matter of time before other things are placed! I live in Australia and found Highlights by accident (I needed a writers retreat in the USA close enough in time to the Winter Institute so I could apply for a grant to take me to both). It turned out to be the life changing part of the trip and now I can’t wait until I’m able to return. I adored my time there and have made many lasting connections.” (Michael Earp)

My debut novel We Deserve Monuments was workshopped at Summer Camp in 2018. My next YA novel Thirsty was revised at a personal retreat. Every time I leave, I feel so renewed and inspired.” (Jas Hammonds)

I got to meet with so many amazing folks and learn from them just by being in the same space.

#HFGATHER: PRIDE & JOY, AN ANTIDOTE FOR ERASURE

Authors NoNieqa Ramos, Vicki Johnson, Alexandra Villasante, and author/illustrator Emily Rosenthal gathered together to talk about illuminating and joyous books that they’ve loved, and projects that have brought pride and joy to their lives, even in unexpected places. Em Dickson joined in conversation from the perspective of reader, writer, librarian, and founder of Pronouns May Vary.

Watch the reply here.

News and Resources

Scholarships for LGBTQIA+ Voices at the Highlights Foundation

Kidlit Pride Scholarship
Trans Women Write Scholarship
Transgender and Nonbinary Scholarship for Picture Book Storytellers

Blogs and Podcasts

3 Questions for Rob Costello and Nora Shalaway Carpenter About Writing Short Fiction

3 Questions for Rob Costello and Nora Shalaway Carpenter About Writing Short Fiction

#HFGather: Pride & Joy, an Antidote for Erasure

#HFGather: Pride & Joy, an Antidote for Erasure

GETTING THE WORK DONE: Shifting Negative Self-Talk to Constructive Ideas

GETTING THE WORK DONE: Shifting Negative Self-Talk to Constructive Ideas

Watch Our Pride Celebration of Stories

Watch Our Pride Celebration of Stories

Upcoming Programs Featuring LGBTQIA+ Voices On Faculty

Just Do It! Your Collaborative Support Group for Finishing Your Draft (Spring/Summer)

Just Do It! Your Collaborative Support Group for Finishing Your Draft (Spring/Summer)

Starts: April 17, 2024

Summer Camp in Illustration: Intensive Artistic Inspiration

Summer Camp in Illustration: Intensive Artistic Inspiration

Starts: July 10, 2024

Summer Camp in Writing: Create and Dream!

Summer Camp in Writing: Create and Dream!

Starts: July 14, 2024

Whole Novel Workshop: An In-Person Retreat for Novelists (August)

Whole Novel Workshop: An In-Person Retreat for Novelists (August)

Starts: August 14, 2024

Just Do It! Your Collaborative Support Group for Finishing Your Draft (Fall)

Just Do It! Your Collaborative Support Group for Finishing Your Draft (Fall)

Starts: September 18, 2024

Whole Novel Workshop: An In-Person Retreat for Novelists (October)

Whole Novel Workshop: An In-Person Retreat for Novelists (October)

Starts: October 17, 2024

Rainbow Retreat: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Rainbow Retreat: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Starts: October 31, 2024

Get Involved

How will you inspire kids by amplifying the voices of LGBTQIA+ authors and illustrators?

 

Our Mission in Action

Share Your Story, Inspire a Child
Scholarships
Equity & Inclusion in Kidlit
Partners & Sponsors

The Highlights Foundation positively impacts children by amplifying the voices of storytellers who inform, educate, and inspire children to become their best selves.  Learn more about our impact.