7 Bookish Ways to Celebrate Pride

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Pride Month may be almost over, but that doesn’t mean the celebrations have to stop. There are a lot of things I love about Pride, but the truth is, I’m the type of person who celebrates Pride all year long. When it comes to books, I’m a year-round queer reader. So while all of these ideas for literary ways to celebrate Pride are things you can do right now, in the last two weeks of June, they’re also things you can do in July. and August. and September. And October…

I’ve also focused on fun ways to celebrate that don’t require being in big crowds or attending massive events. Great Pride events are fun for a lot of people! Are important! But they are not for everyone. Also, we are still in a pandemic. I used to feel left out, or like there was something wrong with me, when I was younger, because I never wanted to go to the big Pride parades. Now I know that parades are just one of dozens and dozens of ways to celebrate how wonderful it is to be queer.

So whether you’re ready to delve into queer history, excited to read all the queer books this month, or looking for some fantastic LGBTQ+ book organizations to donate to, get ready to wave your rainbow flag high.

Reserve books by queer authors

cover of Self-Made Boys by Anna-Marie McLemore

Here’s an easy way to support and celebrate queer authors this Pride Month: order your books early! Pre-orders really do make a difference in the lives of authors and their books, especially when it comes to debuting authors. They are also a lovely gift that you can give yourself. There’s nothing better than the feeling of receiving a surprise package for a book you completely forgot about your pre-order months ago! If you don’t have a lot of money to spend on books, you can still help authors by asking your library to pre-order the book. It’s just as beneficial as buying it yourself, and you can put it on hold at the same time, so you can read it as soon as it’s released.

There are too many amazing queer books coming out this summer and fall to list them all here. But I’ll give you the highlights of my personal pre-order list, which includes:

If you’re looking for even more weird books to preorder, we’ve got a fantastic guide to how to find upcoming book releasesas well as this useful basic manual on how to keep up to date with new releases.

Donate to Bookish LGBTQIA+ Orgs

If you’re looking to celebrate Pride with a few donations, here are some book-related organizations that will benefit from your dollars:

hope in a box provides LGBTQ+ inclusive books, curriculum, and training for educators. With all the book bans going on right now, ensuring kids and teachers have access to queer books and educational materials is more important than ever.

LGBT books for prisoners is “an affirming and racial justice-focused prison abolitionist project” that ships books to incarcerated LGBTQ people across the United States.

The General Service Office – Queer Division Y Bluestockings Cooperative are two volunteer bookstores, activist spaces, and community centers, both in New York City.

Read books that honor queer history

cover of We Are Everywhere by Leighton Brown and Matthew L. Riemer

The pride stemmed from Christoper Street Liberation Day, which took place in June 1970 to honor the first anniversary of the Stonewall riots. It’s always time to learn about LGBTQ+ history, but it feels especially important during Pride Month. If you’re going to celebrate Pride, you need to know something about its history and origins, not to mention the decades of queer activism that preceded Stonewall.

A great place to start is we are everywhere by Leighton Brown and Matthew L. Riemer (who direct @lgbt_history On Instagram). It is a magnificent book filled with hundreds of photos; just looking at it is a delight. But it is also a detailed and complicated story. Brown and Riemer delve into the good and the bad, exploring the schisms and conflicts in the history of queer activism, as well as the moments of success and solidarity.

And when you’re reading to learn more, check out these LGBTQ+ history booksthese essential books on LGBTQ+ historyand these books aboutyour woman’s history. If you’re more inclined to learn about history by reading historical fiction, there are plenty of fantastic books on this list of the best. best queer historical fiction.

Host a Queer Readathon

For all my fellow queer introverts, may I suggest a queer read-a-thon for Pride? All you need is a stack of queer books, some nice snacks, and a friend or two (or no, solo reading is fine too!) I loved this article Leah wrote about taking a reading vacation against exhaustion. I plan to round out my Pride celebrations this year by following your advice and throwing myself a mini reading holiday weekend, with all the queer books, of course.

Visit a gay-owned bookstore (online or in person)

What’s better than buying queer books? Buying queer books at queer-owned bookstores! Libro.fm has a fantastic bookstore finder that allows you to filter by results based on various qualifiers, such as gay-owned, black-owned, female-owned, etc. You might even find a gay-owned bookstore near you that you didn’t even know existed!

Fortunately for all of us who don’t live near a queer bookstore, there is this little thing you may have heard of called online shopping. I really appreciate being able to buy books from independent queer-owned bookstores whose mission and values ​​I align with, even if they are hundreds of miles away. In recent years, I have bought from Buffalo Street Booksa community-owned bookstore in Ithaca, New York, and Loyalty bookstores in DC At the start of the pandemic, I spent hours virtually surfing a room of your own in Madison, Wisconsin, thanks to the amazing playlists the booksellers there have healed.

One of the best things about Bookshop is that smaller stores that don’t have their own online stores can create Bookstore storefronts and receive a cut of the profits. I have enjoyed browsing (and buying from) TUbby & Coo Town Center Bookstore And there are plenty more queer-owned stores with bookstore window displays to discover!

Take part in a queer reading challenge

If you are not yet subscribed to the Our newsletter Queerest Shelves, I highly recommend it! Earlier this year, Danika offered queer recommendations for all 2022 Read Harder notices Why not tackle some this Pride Month? Or create your own queer reading challenge: here you go any ideas to get started

Show your pride with Bookish Merch

Sometimes you just want a cute queer book sticker or some rainbow markers, you know? Show your pride in books this year with some of these LGBTQ+ book productsor some of these fantastic articles for LGBTQ+ readers. If you’re still blacking out heartstopper (the graphic novels and the Netflix adaptation), why not enjoy some stop hearts accessories?

Over the years, Pride has become increasingly corporate, with major corporations speaking out about queer rights and culture during June, despite remaining silent (or actively hostile) the rest of the year. There are plenty of queer artists, creators, and small business owners making and selling all kinds of Pride products (books and more), and they’re worth seeking out and supporting.


If you’re looking for even more ways to celebrate, check out our pride month File, Archive! You’ll find book lists galore, enough to keep you reading until next June!

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