Our Next Event

Rob Redding on race & losing his boyfriend to gun violence

Rob Reddingout_loud.htm_txt_IMG_7022 copy

  Nationally syndicated talk host Rob Redding talks about his autobiography “Out Loud” which recounts how losing his first boyfriend to gun violence forced him out of the closet. “Out loud” is a story of race and sexuality that has been called “shocking” by CBS Radio. “Out loud” is available exclusively at his website ReddingNewsReview.com. Following [...]

Thu. Feb 22, 2018 7:00 PM


February 11, 2014

Dictionary: Featuring Amanda Davidson, Dia Felix, Kaitlyn Greenidge, Nick Comilla, Norhan Hassan, Oki Sogumi, Sophy Naess, and Tennessee Jones

Dictionary is a reading/performance/film/whatever-yr-medium showcase curated by Stephen Boyer, hosted by the Bureau of General Services—Queer Division. This month Amanda Davidson, Dia Felix, Kaitlyn Greenidge, Nick Comilla, Norhan Hassan, Oki Sogumi (skyping in from the Bay Area), Sophy Naess, and Tennessee Jones will be sharing work.

Dictionary will begin promptly at 8pm, but the bookstore will be open all day so come early, warm up, grab a drink, browse for a new book and save yourself a seat!

Amanda Davidson never knew how much she could love one small dog. partedinthemiddle.wordpress.com.

Dia Felix is a writer and filmmaker. Areas of interest include romance, celebrity, obsession, decadence, 2013, and rock and roll. She has written for many blogs and online channels and self-published some number of booklettes. Her novel “Nochita” will be published through City Lights/Sister Spit in early 2014. She is founder and editor of “Personality Press.”
Felix has worked for many museums and arts institutions as a digital media producer, with a particular emphasis in exploring the desires and obsessions which drive extraodinary creative accomplishments.
She also works with young people as a filmmaking instructor and mentor.
Born and raised in Southern California, Felix now lives mostly in New York.

Kaitlyn Greenidge is a writer based in Brooklyn. Her work has appeared in American Short Fiction, The Believer, At Length Magazine, Green Mountains Review, The Feminist Wire, Out History, and Afrobeat Journal among other places. She was a 2011 Visiting Emerging Writer at Johnson State College in Johnson, Vermont and is currently an Artist in Residence at Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Workspace. She is also an editor at the Tottenville Review. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and she has received scholarships to Breadloaf Writers’ Conference. Her interview with Victor LaValle can be found in McSweeney’s Press’s Always Apprentices: The Believer Magazine Presents Twenty-Two Interviews Between Writers.

Nick Comilla: Born on a military base turned ghost town in Rome, NY, Nick Comilla currently lives in NYC. His poems have appeared in Assaracus, Poetry is Dead, Lambda Literary and HOMO Magazine. He is a poetry/fiction MFA student at The New School where he is currently working on his first book project, Ghosts of Montreal.

Norhan Hassan, a problem child. She goes to the New School for politics and urban design. She makes pamphlets and zines for the streets. She uses performance and writing to further a dialogue about social reproduction and the process of feminizing the body for different forms of labor.

oki sogumi (b. Seoul, South Korea) watches k-dramas, writes into small white boxes on the internet, and stays warm in the Bay Area. Her poems have appeared in Claudius App, Hi Zero, and LIES Journal. She is currently working on something like a novel.

Sophy Naess is a painter and diarist based in New York. Her publications are available at Printed Matter and sophynaess.com. She was a 2013 artist in residence at the Shandaken Project.

Tennessee Jones is the author of the Lambda Literary Award nominated collection Deliver Me From Nowhere, a “cover” of Bruce Springsteen’s Nebraska. He is the recipient of awards from the Jacob K. Javits Foundation, the Christopher Isherwood Foundation and Hunter College, where he received his MFA in Fiction in 2010. He was also the George Bennett Fellow (Writer in Residence) at Philips Exeter Academy 2010-11, and the Philip Roth Writer in Residence at Bucknell University (2013). His current novel in progress is about generational trauma in an Appalachian town known for two brutal incidents: the hanging of an elephant and the expulsion of its black population. He grew up in the hollers of East Tennessee and currently lives in Brooklyn.





Start: February 11, 2014 8:00 PM
End: February 11, 2014 10:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

February 9, 2014

Poetry Reading with Claudia Cortese, Joy Ladin, Trace Peterson, and Grey Vild

Claudia Cortese, Joy Ladin, Trace Peterson, and Grey Vild share a love of poetry and each other that cannot be contained. They are thrilled to read their work together—please come be their beautiful audience.



Trace Peterson is author of Since I Moved In (Chax Press) and numerous chapbooks. The Editor/Publisher of EOAGH, she also recently co-edited the anthology Troubling the Line: Trans and Genderqueer Poetry and Poetics (Nightboat Books). She lives in Brooklyn.



Claudia Cortese’s poems have appeared in Best New Poets 2011, Blackbird, Crazyhorse, Kenyon Review Online, and Rattle, among others, and her essays and book reviews have appeared in Devil’s Lake, Mid-American Review, and Iowa Review. Her first book of poems—which explores trauma, myth, fairy tales, and girlhood—is currently traveling the land of book contests and has been a semifinalist for prizes from the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry, Persea Books, and the University of Wisconsin Press. A recipient of awards from RHINO Poetry, Baltimore Review, and Kent State University, Cortese lives and teaches in New Jersey.



Joy Ladin, Gottesman Professor of English at Yeshiva University, has published six books of poetry, including 2012′s The Definition of Joy, Forward Fives award winner Coming to Life, and Lambda Literary Award finalist Transmigration. Her memoir, Through the Door of Life:  A Jewish Journey Between Genders, was a 2012 National Jewish Book Award finalist. Her work has appeared in many periodicals, including American Poetry Review, Southern Review, Prairie Schooner, Parnassus: Poetry in Review, Southwest Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and North American Review, and has been recognized with a Fulbright Scholarship.



Grey Vild’s work has been best described as sitting in a closet, dittling itself, and, like, you know, frying baloney on a light bulb.






Start: February 9, 2014 7:00 PM
End: February 9, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

February 7, 2014

Opening Reception for Manorama – Collages & Drawings by René Smith

Manorama – Collages & Drawings by René Smith

Bureau of General Services—Queer Division

83A Hester St., between Orchard and Allen Sts.

NY, NY 10002

Friday, February 7th, through Sunday, March 30th Thursday, April 10th

Join us for a discussion with René Smith about her work on Sunday, March 30th, at 4 PM

Manorama Rene Smith small

“This body of work is a sincere ode to longing and the beauty of men’s bodies, but it also contains small jokes, ideas about history, and references to our relationship to photography. The project is about men’s bodies seen through a woman’s eyes – the woman’s gaze – the man’s body – the body as landscape with hills and valleys to roam. The collages are made from vintage magazines from the 60’s and 70’s – a time when the male nude in widely circulating publications was new, and the idea of a woman appreciating the male nude was radical.  The paintings and drawings are based on my own photographs of friends and professional models and take on the same subject – still fairly uncommon from a woman’s point of view.” René Smith


René Smith lives and works in Bushwick, Brooklyn, New York. She was a Visiting Lecturer in Painting at Chiang Mai University in Thailand, and has also been an artist in residence at The Gil Society in Iceland and Vermont Studio Center. She has shown her work at The Bangkok Art & Culture Center, Koi Gallery (Bangkok), NoSpace Gallery (Bangkok), BKK Art House (Bangkok), The Chiang Mai University Art Museum (Thailand), and Aljira Contemporary Art Center (New Jersey). René Smith was born in Philadelphia and received her M.F.A. in Painting from Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia and Rome and her B.A. in Painting from Bennington College in Vermont. She teaches painting at St. Thomas Aquinas College.




Start: February 7, 2014 6:00 PM
End: February 7, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division at Cage
Phone: 646 457 0859
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

February 5, 2014

Frank Spinelli Reads from His Memoir Pee-Shy

Part family memoir, part love story, PEE-SHY by Frank Spinelli gives readers an inspiring message of empowerment with the page-turning suspense of true crime.

In 1978, eleven-year-old Frank Spinelli’s parents signed him up for Boy Scouts. Soon after, he was taken under the wing of Scoutmaster Bill Fox, a cop who sexually and mentally abused him for two years. When Frank told his family, they were convinced to do nothing. Frank blamed himself for everything. That year he also became pee-shy.

Thirty years later, Frank has a thriving medical practice and a comfortable home in Manhattan’s gay community, but still struggles to overcome the physical reminder of his past trauma. Then he learns his former Scoutmaster and abuser has adopted fifteen boys in the decades since they last crossed paths. One adoption had even earned Bill a national Father of the Year Award and a book deal.

This shocking discovery gives Frank the opportunity to overturn thirty years of confusion and self-blame—for himself, and for other boys like him. During the course of the next three years, he confronts the man who stole his childhood and brings him to justice.


Advance praise for Pee-Shy

“Spinelli deftly portrays his years as a chubby, awkward adolescent and the complexity of his reaction to the molestation. Spinelli’s refreshing honesty as a protagonist make this memoir an important testament to a reality that is too often concealed by shame or fear.” – Publishers Weekly 

“Intensely bracing reading…an engrossing memoir about overcoming childhood sexual trauma.” – Kirkus Reviews 

“With raw honesty [Dr. Spinelli] makes us understand that monsters do exist and a child’s innocence is precious.” – Whoopi Goldberg 

“A devastatingly heart-breaking look at life after childhood abuse, with wit and piercing insight that can only come from a place of brutal honesty.” – Josh Kilmer-Purcell, author of The Bucolic Plague and star of The Fabulous Beekman Boys 

“This is a memoir about a grown-up boy’s generous—and healing—heart.” – Kevin Sessums 


Frank Spinelli -Photo Credit Chad Schroer

Frank Spinelli -Photo Credit Chad Schroer

DR. FRANK SPINELLI is a licensed and board certified internist and sits on the board of the Gay Men’s Health Crisis Center, the oldest HIV organization. His memoir, PEE-SHY, recounts his childhood of sexual abuse as a young Staten Island Boy Scout, his decision 30 years later to pursue his abuser, and how he ultimately had the Scoutmaster who molested him – and many other boys over the years – put in prison. Spinelli is also the author of Advocate Guide to Gay Men’s Health and Wellness (Alyson Books, 2008), was the host of Ask the Doctor on Advocate.com, and appeared as the medical expert on Threesome on here TV.  Dr. Spinelli has been featured in two documentaries; Positive Youth and the Emmy nominated 30 Years from Here, and has appeared on several episodes of Sesame Street. Currently, Dr. Spinelli appears monthly on Sirius Radio’s Morning Jolt. He has made several appearances on ABC News, NBC Nightly News, the Today Show, MTV and Veria TV. For more information, please visit: www.FrankSpinelliMD.com


Start: February 5, 2014 7:00 PM
End: February 5, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division at Cage
Phone: 646 457 0859
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

February 1, 2014


Robert Siek introduces poets Jeffery Berg, Jerome Murphy, and Justin Sherwood.



JEFFERY BERG grew up in Six Mile, South Carolina, and Lynchburg, Virginia. He received an MFA from New York University. His poems have appeared in Court Green,Map Literary, MiPOesias, the Gay & Lesbian Review, and Harpur Palate. He has written reviews for Lambda LiteraryReview and the Poetry Project Newsletter. A Virginia Center of the Creative Arts fellow, Jeffery lives in New York and blogs at jdbrecords.



JEROME MURPHY received an MFA from New York University, where he currently acts as Program Administrator at the Creative Writing Program. He assisted Diane Middlebrook in researching Her Husband: Hughes and Plath, a Marriage. His reviews have appeared in the column Outwords, which he authored for Next Magazine from 2010 to 2011, and in The Brooklyn Rail.



JUSTIN SHERWOOD’s poems and essays have appeared in ILK, H_NGM_N, The Poetry Project Newsletter, and New Criticals, among others. He is a graduate of the New School MFA Creative Writing Program, where he was selected for the 2012 Paul Violi Prize in Poetry. He lives in Astoria.



ROBERT SIEK is a poet who lives in Brooklyn and works as a production editor at a large publishing house in Manhattan. His poems have appeared in journals such as The Columbia Poetry Review, Court Green, Mary, Assaracus, Chelsea Station, and The Nervous Breakdown. In 2002, the New School published his chapbook Clubbed Kid, and in 2007, his short story “Sixteen” appeared in the short-fiction anthology Userlands: New Fiction Writers from the Blogging Underground. His first full-length collection of poetry, Purpose and Devil Piss, was published by Sibling Rivalry Press in late 2013.



Start: February 1, 2014 7:00 PM
End: February 1, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division at Cage
Phone: 646 457 0859
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States