For over 30 years, LAMBDA Literary has championed LGBTQ books and authors. The organisation traces its literary beginnings to the publication of the LAMBDA Literary report in 1987, by L. Page (Deacon) Maccubbin, which drew attention to LGBTQ titles. Two years later, the LAMBDA Literary Awards (the Lammys) were established in 1989.
At that first gala event, honors went to such distinguished writers as National Book Award Finalist Paul Monette (Borrowed Time), Dorothy Allison (Trash), Allan Hollinghurst (The Swimming Pool Library), and Edmund White (The Beautiful Room is Empty). The purpose of the Awards in the early years was to identify and celebrate the best lesbian and gay books in the year of their publication.
In conversation with Vanity Fair, executive director Landers tells writer Erin vanderhoof, “In a world where queer lives remain under threat to various degrees, the Lammys are a very precious space that values great writing and queer identity. The Lammys recognize the quality of one’s writing, but also says that it’s inherently valuable because it’s queer.”