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Our Book Club Rocks!


Featured Author:  Lucy Jane Bledsoe


Next Featured Author: Avery Ellis


Meet Our Featured Author, Ellis Avery -
The New York Press called her “the Best Writer You’ve Never Heard of But Should Go Read Right Now.”

Ellis Avery's first novel, The Teahouse Fire, received the Lambda Literary Award, the Ohioana Library Award and was named a Booksense pick and Kiriyama Prize Notable Book. The book has been translated into Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, Polish, Romanian and German.

Ellis Avery studied Japanese tea ceremony for five years in New York and Kyoto, and now teaches creative writing at Columbia University. Her work has appeared in The Village Voice, Publishers Weekly, Kyoto Journal, LIT, and Pacific Reader, as well as onstage at New York's Expanded Arts Theater.

* Review form the American Library Association -
Avery, a longtime student of the Japanese tea ceremony, has set her first novel in late-nineteenth-century Japan, when that tradition-steeped nation gradually exposed itself to the modern West. She weaves a memorable saga of two women: Yukako, the daughter of a respected "tea advisor" to feudal lords, and Aurelia, a French orphan who traveled to Kyoto at age nine with her uncle, and was adopted by the tea master's family after he died.

Avery adroitly conveys the intricacies of the tea ceremony, "the language of diplomacy," and the subtle ways in which it was transformed as Japan moved from a Shogun society to one ruled by the emperor. At the same time, she illuminates other social changes, such as the arrival of the steam engine, women no longer blackening their teeth, and the lifting of the ban on Christianity. Aurelia remains Yukako's stalwart friend through doomed romances and a disappointing marriage, telling her, when Yukako resumes her father's tea ceremonies after his death, "You took an art that could have died, and you made it live." Deborah Donovan


Next Featured Author: Elana Dykewoman


Writer, editor, activist, teacher, mentor, philanthropist, award winning author . . . All these and more are the words used in describing the career and achievements of Elana Dykewoman.

With more than twenty-five years of experience, she is among the most admired authors in the LGBT literary community.

Born to middle-class Jewish parents, Elana moved with her family to Puerto Rico when she was eight. Her father was a lawyer and her mom, a librarian. She earned a B.F.A. in creative writing from the California Institute of Art and an M.F.A. in creative writing from San Francisco State University.

For more than a decade, she served as editor of Sinister Wisdom, the international lesbian feminist journal, and as contributor to the lesbian journal Common Lives / Lesbian Lives. She lives in Oakland, California and teaches both privately and at San Francisco State.


Next Featured Author: Valerie Miner


(Photo: John Campbell)

Serving currently as an artist-in-residence and professor at Stanford University, Valerie Miner’s distinguished career includes accomplishments in the fields of writing, teaching, theater and museum exhibit design.

The author of thirteen books, she has received numerous awards and fellowships, including those from The Rockefeller Foundation, The McKnight Foundation, The NEA, two Fulbright Fellowships and more.

She has extensive experience as an international traveler and reports having become interested in exploring and storytelling early in her childhood. Valerie Miner and her partner live in San Francisco and Mendocino County, California.

LINK to Valerie Miner's Website:



Big thanks and much appreciation to
 Co-chair Cynthia Katona and Host Rachel Herbert
for their help in bringing the Betty's List Book Club into reality.

Here's the story of our Book Club in photos!


Betty's List Book Club
Co-Chair Cynthia Katona, author of Book Savvy,
 & Host Rachel Herbert, founder and owner of
 Duboce Park Cafe and Dolores Park Cafe

(Note: All photos are Betty's List Photos unless otherwise noted.)


Featured Author: Poet Kit Kennedy


About Featured Author . . . Poet Kit Kennedy -

Kit Kennedy is a walker, reader, poet, cook for her friends, and lover of cheese. Her poems appear in All Things Girl, Arsenic Lobster, Bayou, Bombay Gin, Cezanne's Carrot, Erosha, FriGG, Gay & Lesbian Review, The Hiss Quarterly, Mannequin Envy, Pearl, Poetry Super Highway, Right Hand Pointing, Runes, Saranac Review, Sinister Wisdom, Triplopia, Van Gogh's Ear, and The Wild Goose Poetry Review. She hosts the monthly All Poets Welcome Reading Series at Gallery Cafe in San Francisco.


Featured Author: Jamison Green


About Featured Author Jamison "James" Green -

Jamison "James" Green is an internationally respected leader within the Transgender movement. A dynamic speaker and compelling writer, James has appeared in ten documentary films and received every major award given by the largest national transgender organizations. He is an acknowledged inspiration for thousands of people, transsexual and non-transexual alike. (Photos below for September by Cynthia Katona)

LINK to Jamison Green's web site:




AUGUST, 2007

Featured Author:    Ali Liebegott

                                                                           (Photos: Ali Liebegott Web Site)

About Featured Author Ali Liebegott -

A Lamda Literacy Award-winning author (1995, The Beautifully Worthless), Ali Liebegott has been writing for most of her life. Now living in San Diego, she teaches creative writing at UC San Diego and is currently finishing her an illustrated novel, The Crumb People about a post-9/11 obsessive duck feeder. Her most recent novel, the IHOP Papers (2007), was published by Carroll & Graf.

Liebegott has appeared throughout the US, including two tours with Sister Spit. In 1999, she was the recipient of a poetry fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts.

LINK to Ali's website:


July, 2007

Featured Author:    Michelle Tea

                                                                (Photos: Michelle Tea Website)

About Featured Author Michelle Tea -

Author, poet and ex-prostitute Michelle Tea is a prolific young writer who is an unabashed hit in the San Francisco queer literacy community. Originally from Chelsea, MA, Tea co-founded of the original Sister Spit experience, a nationally successful traveling girl-poetry road show. She is known for her live performances, public speaking and published works, including four memoirs, three anthologies and several novels. She’s been called the poet laureate of the San Francisco’s Mission District, and has been profiled by KQED,, Curve Magazine and more. She is host and cookie baker for the monthly Radar Reading Series at the San Francisco Public Library.

Tea's novel Valencia (2000) won the Lambda Literary Award for Best Lesbian Fiction, and her first novel, Rose of No Man’s Land, was selected by the American Library Association as a 2007 Stonewall Honor Book.

LINK to KQED audio reading from No Man’s Land:

                                                                                (Photo: Cynthia Katona)

                                                                            (Photo: Cynthia Katona)

                                                                                (Photo: Cynthia Katona)


June, 2007

Featured Author:    Katia Noyes

                                                                                (Photos: Katia Noyes Website)

About Featured Author Katia Noyes -

Katia Noyes left home at the age of 15. She has worked as a roofer, math tutor, journalist, go-go dancer and content developer.

Her debut novel, CRASHING AMERICA, was a Book Sense Notable Book and was chosen as one of the Ten Best Gay/Lesbian Books of 2005 by and the United Kingdom's Rainbow Network.

It was also nominated for the Northern California Book Award, Publishing Triangle Award and Lambda Literary Award.

Her short stories have been published by Cleis and Down There Press. She lives in the Glen Park neighborhood of San Francisco. For more information, please visit the web site:

More About Crashing America -
It's a road novel about a street punk. She leaves San Francisco to work on a farm in Nebraska and ends up stealing cars and having all kinds of adventures. It's the reverse of most literary pilgrimages. Unlike the usual story about a young person coming to California, it's about someone going to the middle of the country.


May, 2007

Featured Author:    Carol Queen, PhD

                                                                                    (Photo: Carol Queen Website)

About Featured Author Carol Queen, PhD -

Some become legends in their own time. Carol Queen is one. She’s an author, educator and activist who holds a doctorate in sexology. She's been carrying the torch for sex-positive culture for many years, and she serves as Chief Cultural Officer & Sexologist for Good Vibrations ( Carol Queen's story is a fascinating one and she shared with our book club stories from her life's work, stories about the origins of Masturbation Month, stories from her years with Good Vibrations and much, much more!

More About the Masturbate-A-Thon -

More about Dr. Carol Queen, PhD on her web site:


April, 2007

Featured Author:    Jewelle Gomez

(Photos: Jewelle Gomez Website)

About Featured Guest Jewelle Gomez -
Jewelle is a much beloved author and activist. She has written seven books, including the double Lambda Award winning novel "The Gilda Stories" which was performed by the Urban Bush Women company and toured the country in 13 cities (visit: She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the California Arts Council. Jewelle has served as Program Director for the San Francisco Arts Commission, and she is now Director of Grants & Community Initiatives with The Horizons Foundation. She also serves on the San Francisco Library Commission to which she was appointed by the Mayor. Jewelle has been an invited speaker at numerous benefits, including those hosted by Betty's List supporting lesbian health.

Read more about Jewelle Gomez on her web site:

Featured Author Jewelle Gomez
With Co-Chair Cynthia Katona


March, 2007

Featured Author:    Renate Stendhal, PhD

(Photos: Renate Stendhal Website)

About Featured Guest Renate Stendhal, PhD -
Renate Stendhal's is a high-respected voice in our community and far, far beyond. She is a Lambda award-winning writer, counselor and writing coach. Born in Germany, she spent half of her adult life in Paris and the other half in California (first in Berkeley, now in Pt. Reyes Station) where she works in private practice. Renate's is a fascinating story, she's a compelling speaker and her material is superb.

Read more about Renate Stendhal's Gertrude Stein In Words & Pictures on her web site:


Wednesday, January 31st, 2007 found a full house at Rachel Herbert's Duboce Park Cafe for the launch of our Betty's List Book Club, co-chaired by Professor Cynthia Katona and Betty. The group will meet monthly on the 3rd Wednesday, so the next one is scheduled for Wednesday, February 21st.

There's much, much more about our Book Club on it's official blog, where you too can participate:  Betty's List Book Club Blog.

Professor Cynthia Katona
Betty's List Book Club Co-Chair