Lambda Literary Awards

The winners of the Lambda Awards 2022 were announced in a virtual ceremony on Saturday, June 11, 2022. Here are the writers of African descent who won in their categories.

The Lambda Literary Awards, or the “Lammys,” as they are known, are an award of Lambda Literary, the oldest and largest literary arts organization advancing Lesbian, Gay, Trans, and Queer (LGBTQ) literature in the United States. Some previous winners include Chike Frankie Edozien, Nicole Dennis-Benn, Kacen Callender, Aricka Foreman, and Chinelo Okparanta.

The finalists for the awards were announced across twenty-four categories encompassing the whole spectrum of queer literature on March 15 before the winners were revealed Saturday. Before the ceremony, there were several special awards given on June 6. Aisha Sabatini Sloan was awarded the Jeanne Córdova Prize for Lesbian/Queer Nonfiction 2022 to which she tweeted, “So excited about this!!!!!!!”.  The Randall Kenan Prize for Black LGBTQ Fiction was awarded to Kalynn Bayron alongside honourable mentions for Robert Jones, Jr. and Mecca Jamilah Sullivan. Bayron is the award-winning author of the YA fantasy novels Cinderella Is Dead and This Poison Heart. Her response was, “I’m so incredibly honored. Thank you to @lambdaliterary and to my readers who inspire me every day. ☺️🌈🎉📚”

The writers of African descent who won in their categories, who were quite a few this year, were;

Lesbian Fiction

  • Skye Falling, Mia McKenzie, Random House

Twitter response: YOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Gay Fiction

  • 100 Boyfriends, Brontez Purnell, MCD x FSG Originals

Facebook reaction: I won the Lambda Literary Award for Best Gay Fiction last night and I’m beside myself!!!!!!! Special thanks to my agent Julia Masnik, my beloved editor/bestie Jackson Howard, Claire Tobin for all the amazing PR. Also FSGxMCD @fsgoriginals @mcdbooks. Also, this award is dedicated to all my 100 Boyfriends- may our love live forever- or finally Rest In Peace ❤️ @lambdaliterary

Bisexual Nonfiction

  • Borealis, Aisha Sabatini Sloan, Coffee House Press

Transgender Nonfiction

  • Belly of the Beast: The Politics of Anti-Fatness as Anti-Blackness, Da’Shaun Harrison, North Atlantic Books

Acceptance speech in full

Gay Poetry

  • Punks: New & Selected Poems, John Keene, The Song Cave

Twitter reaction: Many thanks to @LambdaLiterary, my publisher @thesongcave & everyone who made this book possible. It took years to make it to print but it was worth it! Congrats to all the #LambdaLiterary finalists & honorees too! Thanks for a wonderful ceremony too!

Bisexual Poetry

  • Gumbo Ya Ya, Aurielle Marie, University of Pittsburgh Press

Twitter reaction: Shout out to the poems. I’m just in awe. Thank you to @LambdaLiterary and the judges for awarding me the Lammy for Bisexual Poetry! I have such deep gratitude. Man. What a day. What a life. How lucky am I to be a writer in the world!

Incidentally, Aurielle Marie was also Georgia Author of the Year on the same weekend.

Transgender Poetry

  • Crossbones on My Life, Mason J, Nomadic Press

Twitter reaction: I still can’t believe I am a Black Trans #Lammys Winner

Gay Memoir/Biography

  • Punch Me Up to the Gods: A Memoir, Brian Broome, Mariner Books

Facebook reaction: I won! Thank you to all of you.

LGBTQ Anthology

  • Mouths of Rain: An Anthology of Black Lesbian Thought, Edited by Briona Simone Jones, The New Press

Twitter Reaction:  Abundant gratitude to every contributor who made this crossing possible. 💧 Thank you for supporting my wildest dreams, everyone. 💧 #MOR #blacklesbianthought.

LGBTQ Children’s/Middle Grade

  • Calvin, JR and Vanessa Ford, G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

Twitter Reactions: “Thank you @LambdaLiterary for this incredible honor! 🌈🌈 #lammys2022 #lammys” – Vanessa Ford

LGBTQ Speculative Fiction

  • No Gods, No Monsters, Cadwell Turnbull, Blackstone Publishing

Twitter reaction: Thank you @LambdaLiterary for this honor and the out of body experience I’m still having.

Watch the full ceremony below;