Maiden, Mother, and Crone: Fantastical Trans Femmes is an upcoming anthology of new fantastical short fiction by trans women and trans feminine writers, edited by renowned writer Gwen Benaway (Love Beyond Body, Space and Time). Drawing on high fantasy and other genres of fantasy writing, Maiden, Mother, and Crone is the first anthology by trans femme authors to explore the realms of magic, supernatural beings, and alternative universes. Enter a universe of wonder where trans femmes are powerful heroines, sorceresses, and warriors fighting against dark forces in vivid magical worlds. With celebrated writers like Kai Cheng Thom, Casey Plett, and Gwen Benaway, this anthology will transform the landscape of fantasy and offer radical portals into excitement, danger, and transformation.
Trans women and trans feminine writers face numerous challenges in publishing their work. This anthology brings together established voices with emerging writers to help support a strong, vibrant trans feminine writing community. Writers like us are underrepresented in fantasy writing, even though so many of us are avid fantasy readers. Maiden, Mother, and Crone aims to change this dynamic and showcase the talent and wonder of trans feminine writers.
Maiden, Mother and Crone will bring together trans women and trans feminine writers from across North America to create an anthology worth reading past your bedtime. With these short stories, we offer a dynamic window into fantasy worlds with trans feminine main characters
Please support the work of trans women and trans feminine writers to imagine new and exciting worlds.
The book is a 6x9 paperback prose book, approximately 150 pages long, consisting of 10 short stories. Cover art and design is by Annie Mok. The book will be published and distributed through Bedside Press of Winnipeg, MB.
Creators & Stories
Gwen Benaway - (curator/editor) "Aoyas has abandoned her life long dream of becoming an Imperial Battle Mage to wander the Occupied Lands with her dagger wielding lover, Rais. Working as a mercenaries for an embattled lord, their lives and love are endangered when their overnight stay in a isolated mountain town is interrupted by a bandit massacre"
Gwen Benaway is a trans girl of Anishinaabe and Métis descent. She has published two collections of poetry, Ceremonies for the Dead and Passage, and her third collection, Holy Wild, is forthcoming from BookThug in 2018.
Kai Cheng Thom - "The story of Ramona, a young trans woman whose wardrobe is comprised of clothing that once belonged to trans women who have died of violence and suicide. By the wearing these clothes, Ramona is able to commune with the spirits of their former owners, thus tapping into a legacy of sisterhood and elder wisdom that guides and comforts her. But when a murderer comes to town, Ramona will need more than haunted dresses and a killer sense of fashion to survive."
Kai Cheng Thom is a writer, performer, and social worker based in Toronto and Montreal, unceded Indigenous territories. She is also a lasagna lover and wicked witch. She has contributed to such publications as Buzzfeed, Autostraddle, Matrix Magazine, and Asian American Literary Review. She is the author of Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girl's Confabulous Memoir (Metonymy Press), a place called No Homeland (Arsenal Pulp Press), and the children's book From the Stars in the Sky to the Fish in the Sea (Arsenal Pulp Press).
Casey Plett - "A healer trans woman, having lived her entire life as a traveller, meets an entrancing stranger rooted forever in a single clearing, and she must make a choice about what she gives to the world."
Casey Plett is the author of the novelLittle Fish, the short story collectionA Safe Girl to Loveand co-editor of the anthologyMeanwhile, Elsewhere: Science Fiction and Fantasy from Transgender Writers. She wrote a column on transitioning forMcSweeney's Internet Tendencyand her essays and reviews have appeared inThe New York Times,Maclean's,The Walrus,Plenitude,The Winnipeg Free Press, and other publications. She is the winner of a Lambda Literary Award for Best Transgender Fiction and received an Honour of Distinction from The Writers' Trust of Canada's Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ Emerging Writers.
Crystal Frasier - "A murder mystery set in an alt-history 1920s where transgender people are recognized as the only legitimate spirit mediums. The protagonist is a veteran of the Great War trying to put her life back together and working as a private investigator, her spirit companion is the only German soldier she ever shot."
Crystal Frasier is known for her frequent text contributions to the Pathfinder, Starfinder, Mutants & Masterminds, and Modern AGE roleplaying games, as well as her work writing the Pathfinder: Spiral of Bones comic series, co-writing State of Decay 2, and illustrating the Secrets of Cats roleplaying game. Excitable and easily confused, she lives in the Pacific Northwest under the watchful auspices of her corgi, Calamity. Her most recent game design work can be found in the upcoming World of Lazarus campaign setting for the Modern AGE roleplaying game.
Gwynception - "a tale of a power struggle between a monarchal matriarch and Violet Rage, the outlier. Set in a multiverse of multiple selves, the matriarch is high priestess to a large domineering cult that holds religious and political power, she is also gatekeeper of the realms; one who decides who is deemed worthy of transition and legitimacy. Violet undertakes a quest for the high priestess that unfolds scandal, magic, and mystery."
Gwynception is a schizo trans femme writer and musical performer. Recovering after multiple psychoses they create as a form of self therapy. They love plants, practise gay witchcraft, overthink and complicate everything, and drink copious amounts of liquids.
Kylie Ariel Bemis - "A woman prepares for psychic battle to protect her granddaughter and culture from assimilation by foreign invaders."
Kylie Ariel Bemis is a trans woman and two-spirit working at the intersection of statistics and computer science; she is an enrolled member of the Zuni tribe.
Lilah Sturges - "When Rina, an initiate in a magical order dedicated to a transgender goddess, returns home after her gender transition, she must face not only the evil that menaces her city, but the confusion and grief of the family members who mourn the person they once believed her to be."
Lilah Sturges is the Eisner and Ignatz Award-nominated writer of comics such as Jack of Fables, House of Mystery, Public Relations, and Lumberjanes: The Infernal Compass, as well as two fantasy novels. She lives in Austin, Texas.
Audrey Vest - "To save her family from a magical illness, Denya must brave the woods of Fairy to steal a cure from the table of the fey kin's eternal banquet."
Audrey Vest is an aspiring writer who lives with her family in Florida.
Alexa Fae McDaniel "Fighting may not be ladylike, but when her town relies on Daphne to fight off a band of pirates, she has to choose between defending herself and the place she loves, and upholding the standards of femininity that only she is held to."
Alexa Fae McDaniel is a history student, amateur theater director, and RPG enthusiast from Fredericton, New Brunswick. She likes her coffee like she likes her men - far away from whatever lesbian bar she's sitting at.
Ellen Mellor - "Freeing the Bitch: Four young adventurers undertake a quest to rescue the one woman who can lead them to an object of mystical power."
Ellen Mellor is a trans woman author and reader. So many books. So many comics. So much tea.
Izzy Wasserstein "In a world where magic transforms those who practice it, a mage must risk everything if she hopes to save her lover and her city."
Izzy Wasserstein teaches and writes poetry and fiction. You can read her words in Clarkesworld, PseudoPod, and elsewhere.
Annie Mok - cover artist - Annie Mok is an author-illustrator and a regular contributor to Rookie Mag and The Comics Journal. She lives in Philadelphia. heyanniemok.com | @HeyAnnieMok
Alex Morris - contributing artist
$10 / $15 - Digital PDF - a full digital edition of Mother, Maiden, Crone. Available in all levels above $15, with an Early Bird special of $10
$15 / $20 - The Book - a paperback edition of Mother, Maiden, Crone. Available as an Early Bird special at $15, and $20 after that.
$30 - Book & Bookplate - a paperback edition of Mother, Maiden, Crone, with an exclusive colour bookplate designed by Alex Morris.
$35 - Book & Print -a paperback edition of Mother, Maiden, Crone with a 6x9 print of Alex Morris's artwork for the book.
$50 - Gwen Benaway level - $50
- Mother, Maiden, Crone
- Love Beyond Body Space and Time - an Indigenous LGBT sci-fi anthology, featuring Gwen Benaway's story Passages, about a young trans woman trying a new experimental fast-track transition medicine.
- Passage (signed) - In this poetry collection, Gwen examines what it means to experience violence and speaks to the burden of survival. Traveling to Northern Ontario and across the Great Lakes, Passage is a poetic voyage through divorce, family violence, legacy of colonization, and the affirmation of a new sexuality and gender.
- Holy Wild (digital advance readers copy) - Gwen Benaway's next poetry collection.
We have calculated our budget for a print run of 500 copies, which is the necessary amount to break even for this project should we meet our funding goal.
Commissioned art & writing - 35%
Printing costs - 25%
Shipping - 25%
Editing/design - 5%
Kickstarter fees - 9%
Production & Distribution
The project will be curated and edited by myself, Gwen Benaway. I have years of experience working with authors to bring out their potential and eagerly look forward to the chance to work with up and coming writers as well as established voices.
I will be collaborating with Bedside Press, a Canadian small press publisher that has previously fulfilled 7 of their own Kickstarter campaigns for publishing projects, as well as 2 for other creators (Enough Space for Everyone Else, Habibi: A Muslimah Love Anthology). They will be handling timelines, production and design, as well as shipping fulfillment. The book will be in good hands with their assistance.
Risks and challenges
By collaborating with Bedside Press to handle project coordination and fulfillment, we are ensuring that the project will be delivered. Like any creative pursuit, the possibilities of delays in production are present, but we will be in contact with funders every step of the way.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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