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2013 Midwinter Meeting Rainbow Project Report

Rainbow Project Committee Report
Executive Board Meeting  – Seattle, Washington – January 2013
The goal of The Rainbow List Project is to further the mission of the GLBTRT by promoting quality GLBTQ literature for youth ages birth through teens through creating an annual recommended  bibliography.  We provide readers with guidance in selecting realistic and recommended books that reflect the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning experience and communities, which is becoming ever so important in today’s world.  In creating our annual bibliography we also provide a tool in which librarians and libraries can locate and retain materials within their collections.
During the Annual Conference in Anaheim, California, committee member Jane Cothron presented along with members of Lambda Literary Foundation on Monday, June 25. She discussed the history of GLBTQ fiction, and tied it very nicely into the birth of GLBTQ youth and YA publishing, and the history of the Rainbow Project.
Our projects since the Annual Conference in Anaheim, California were as follows-

  • As a committee, we identified approximately 150 titles for consideration for the 2013 Rainbow List.  While we have continued to build upon the successes of our first few years, a lot of publishers are moving to e-galleys and e-ARCS for submissions, which can make things tricky for members who do not have the proper technology.
  • Committee member Jaime Naidoo resigned privately to Michael at some point during the spring/summer, and was replaced by Victor Shill, a former Rainbow Project committee member.
  • Chair Michael Cart and Past Chair Lynn Evarts resigned both their positions and committee positions to the committee via email at the end of July.
  • GLBTRT Chair David Vess, with the assistance of committee member Jane Cothron, oversaw contacting publishers and collecting nominations from the committee in the absence of a chair and past chair.
  • At the conclusion of our nomination deadline (October 31, 2012), the Rainbow Project had 65 books nominated.  After the straw poll in December, we were able to drop two titles that had no yes votes, making the number of titles to discuss at the 2013 Midwinter Meetings 63.
  • Chair Elect Christine Jenkins stepped down as chair-elect in November, but remains on the committee for the 2013 and 2014 terms.
  • Committee Member Christie Gibrich volunteered to run the straw poll and 2013 Midwinter Meetings in lieu of a chair and chair-elect, and was then elected by the committee as chair for the 2014 list.
  • As it stands for the 2013 Seattle Midwinter Meetings, the Rainbow Project consists of 7 members:  Christie Gibrich, (incoming 2014 Chair), Grand Prairie, Texas; Francesca Burgress, Brooklyn, NY; Jane Cothron, Newport, OR; Christine Jenkins, Champaign, IL; Adela Peskorz, St. Paul, MN; Victor Schill, Houston, TX; and Anna White, Baltimore, MD

During the 2013 Midwinter Meeting in Seattle, Washington our activities will be as follows-

  • Meet, discuss and vote on the 63 books that have been nominated for the 2013 Rainbow Project
  • Create annotations for books that make the final 2013 Rainbow Project List
  • Create a Top 10 book list for dissemination to media outlets
  • Update the blog as internet connectivity allows
  • Prepare a press release for John Amundsen to distribute to various outlets
  • Conduct the business portion of the committee, which will include discussing adjustments to committee requirements regarding inclusion of ebook-only publications, how to improve the process of requesting materials from publishers, and increasing communication between committee members

Following the 2013 Midwinter Meetings in Seattle-
·         David Vess, the GLBTRT Chair and Laura Koltutsky, SRRT Coordinator, have been reviewing the language and bylaws of the committee to make sure that they meet the requirements of both round tables.

·         David Vess, GLBTRT Chair and Laura Koltutsky, SRRT Coordinator, will be looking over volunteer applications for the next cycle of Rainbows (starting February 1, 2013) to replace the four committee spots that will be empty at the start of the 2013-2014 cycle.  A chair-elect for 2013-2014 will be named sometime around Annual 2013.  Once the 2014 cycle is complete, the 2014-2015 committee should have 10 members: a past-chair (Christie Gibrich), a chair, a chair-elect, and 7 committee members.
There are no current plans to present a program at ALA Annual in Chicago; however, the Rainbow Project is on schedule (every other year rotation according to bylaws) to present an author program/breakfast at ALA Annual 2015 in San Francisco.  Previous programs were this past year at ALA Annual 2013 Anaheim in conjunction with Lambda Literary Group, and a breakfast author presentation at ALA Annual 2011 in New Orleans featuring Lea Newman, Marcus Ewert, and Ellen Hopkins.

Respectfully submitted,
Christie Gibrich