ReadOut 2021

Marketing _ PR _ Consultancy (3).png

The fourth annual ReadOut was held virtually on February 26-February 28, 2021 over Zoom. The event had over 900 people register and featured over 80 authors of literature written by, for, and/or about lesbians. Joining the authors were musicians and performers who kept attendees entertained between sessions. 

Archived here are the Pods, Pearls, and Playtime sessions, as well as the festival schedule, sponsors, media mentions, and call for submissions.

Videos of Panels

ReadOut 2021 panels were recorded and will be made available for viewing at a later date. If you would like to be notified of when and where they become available, please join the LGBTQ Resource Center's mailing list, which is located halfway down this page:

Pods: Leading Lesbians

Well-known lesbian authors including Sally Bellerose, Elana Dykewomon, Sheree Greer, Sue Katz, Rose Norman, J.M. Redmann, Liz Edman, Carolyn Gage, Susan Stinson, and Tenea D. Johnson were joined with other authors during 90-minute live-streamed Pods (aka panels) on themes such as elder lesbian writings, Black women writers, mystery, fiction, and the intersection of friendship and careers as lesbian authors. For more information about the Pods, visit the 2021 Leading Lesbians page.

Pearls: Author Readings

Over 50 authors read excerpts from their writing in pre-recorded segments that ranged from politics, poetry, memory, fantasy, romance, to mystery. For more information about the Pearls, visit the 2021 Pearls page.

Playtime: Performances

Readout 2021 featured performances from an array of artists from different genres, including music, comedy, performance art, and theater. For more information about the Playtime events, visit the the 2021 Playtime page


The ReadOut 2021 schedule of events is available as a PDF for download, or you can view it on the schedule page.

Lesbian Speculative Fiction Guide

Tenea D. Johnson's talk on lesbian speculative fiction contained numerous recommendations of authors and readings in the genre. That list can be found here.

Call for Submissions

The ReadOut 2021 Pearls were created from the wonderful submissions authors sent us in response to our call for submissions. If you would like to receive the 2022 call for submissions, join the LGBTQ Resource Center mailing list, which can be found on this page.

ReadOut 2021 Media Mentions

"Gulfport’s Read Out lesbian literature festival wraps up sold-out 2021, eyes 2022" - Creative Loafing

"ReadOut Festival of Lesbian Literature" - Out Coast

"ReadOUT Festival of Lesbian Literature Goes Virtual" - Tampa Bay Times

"ReadOut 2021 Virtually Persists and Prevails" - Watermark

"ReadOut 2021: A Festival of Lesbian Literature" - The Gabber

"Lesbians Unite: Literature Fest Goes Virtual " - The Gabber

"Lesbian Literature Online Festival Event" - Outtake

ReadOut 2021 Sponsors
Tombolo Books
City of Gulfport, Florida
EPIC Generations
SHB Logo.jpg
Harvey Milk Festival
Bloodroot Books
National Women's Music Festival
Charis Books
LGBTQ Resource Center

ReadOut 2021 Organizing Committee:

Edie Daly: member of the Womyn’s Energy Bank that made the original donation of books that started the LGBTQ Resource Center collection at the Gulfport Library and current board member; core member of the ReadOut 2021 Organizing Committee; author of The Old Lesbian Memory Quilt: Stories Told by Edie Daly on Her 80th Birthday

Sonja Franeta: Sonja Franeta is a writer, translator, educator and activist. Author of Pink Flamingos: 10 Siberian Interviews and My Pink Road to Russia and other writings, both books are available in English and Russian. She is retired from teaching English in Oakland CA although she still teaches part time in Florida. She and her partner with their two cats live in Spain for part of the year.

Susan Gore:  joined the LGBTQ Resource Center board as the Circle of Friends liaison in 2015, became board president as it transitioned to an IRS-recognized nonprofit in 2019; core member of the ReadOut 2021 Organizing Committee; co-editor with Rev. Keith Kron of Coming out in Faith: Voices of LGBTQ Unitarian Universalists; Mantra: “It’s not done ‘til it’s overdone.” 

Ellen Levy: author of a series of two published and two soon-to-be-published books of historical fiction, was a member of the planning committee for Readout 2021. She retired from a career in non-profit management, where she supervised programs for people with disabilities, college interns, under-employed immigrants, and the elderly. She has been an active board member for several lesbian groups in Boston.  

Jeanine "Dr. Jazz" Normand: musician and professional writer, majored in premed, lived in France twice, performed concerts, taught writing workshops, and organized for women’s rights around Europe, the Caribbean, and the USA. Normand started the lesbian special collections at Duke University, and she enjoys spearheading and co-coordinating women’s music festivals and lesbian writing conferences, including ReadOut 2021. A lesbian feminist activist in coastal Alabama, Normand, the bilingual Editor at Marsh Rabbit Press, also consults in international business.

Barbara Talkov: has extensive experience working on public policy issues and direct services to improve the communities and lives of women, children and youth. She has worked with not-for-profit agencies and coalitions of them, with municipal government, and with both the legislative and executive branches of state government. Her community involvement has included serving on a variety of not-for-profit and local government boards, as well as various advisory committees.  These have focused on LGBTQ issues, the arts, health and human services, sustainable agriculture, and professional associations.

Milton Wendland: LGBTQ Resource Center board member and a core member of the Organizing Committee for ReadOut 2021; a faculty member in the Department of Women’s & Gender Studies at the University of South Florida, where he teaches courses like LGBTQ+ Cultures, Queer Film & TV, and Sexualities Studies. 

Kitchen Table Literary Arts
The Gabber


The LGBTQ Resource Center of the Gulfport Library in Gulfport, Florida presents ReadOut 2021: A Festival of Lesbian Literature, held virtually through Zoom on February 26-28, 2021. This free festival will feature leading lesbian authors and is open to an international audience.

Over 80 Lesbian Authors!
ReadOut 2021 will be a unique hybrid of live-streamed interactive PODS, prerecorded readings in strings of PEARLS, and PLAYTIME entertainment between sessions. Entertainment will be provided by lesbian musicians, spoken word artists, and comics. The festival will demonstrate how Lesbian Voices Persist and Prevail in these transformative times.

Well-known lesbian authors including Sally Bellerose, Elana Dykewomon, Sheree Greer, Sue Katz, Rose Norman, J.M. Redmann, Liz Edman, Carolyn Gage, Susan Stinson, and Tenea D. Johnson are slated to present 90-minute live-streamed PODS (aka panels) on themes such as elder lesbian writings, Black women writers, mystery, fiction, and the intersection of friendship and careers as lesbian authors.

Register Today - Space is Limited!

Over 900 people have already registered for ReadOut 2021! To register for this free, inclusive festival, visit:

Who Will Be At ReadOut 2021?

The following authors and artists will be participating in ReadOut 2021. To find out when, check the Schedule.


Susan Stinson

Sally Bellerose

Ellen Levy

Tenea D. Johnson

J.M. Redmann

Rose Norman

Sue Katz

Carolyn Gage

Elana Dykewomon

Sheree Greer

Liz Edman

Elena Graf

Cheryl Head 

Corky Culver

Barbara Esrig 

Debra Gish

Gail Reeder

Merril Mushroom

B. Leaf Cronewrite

Rand Hall

Jocelyn Watson

Jane Fleishman

Barbara Ruth

Canyon Sam

Penny Micklebury

Achy Obejas

Adrien Julious-Butler

Andrea Assaf

Chelsea Catherine

Silk-Jazmyne Hindus

Katherine V. Forrest

Jessie Chandler

Carsen Taite


RJ Samuel

Sandra Gail Lambert

Bonnie Morris

S.W. Andersen

Erin Zak

Mercedes Lewis

Ellen Hoil

Carren Strock

Sue Katz

Terry Baum

Renee Bess

Giovanna Capone

Thea Iberall

Kai Lorde

Lynn Ames

Janet Aalfs

Robin Hopkins

Jaimie Kelton

Betty Jean Steinshouer

Karen F. Williams

Lynn C. Miller

Kelly Wacker

Meredith Doench

Elle E. Ire

Toni Logan

Nancy Manahan

Becky Thacker

Helen Renee Brawner

Dusty Miller

S.T. Simper

Carolyn Elizabeth

Anne Laughlin

E.F. Schraeder

Jess Wilburn

Kimberly Dark

Jeanine DrJazz Normand

Sara Yager

Rita Potter

Karelia Stetz-Waters

D'lisa DarLuz

Winn Gilmore

Edie Daly

Sallyanne Monti

Sonja Franeta

Anna Burke

Kathleen Culver

Becky Bohan

Luci Dreamer

Lila Bruce

Riley Scott

Carol Anne Douglas

Jaycie Morrison

MB Caschetta

JB Marsden

Lois McGuiness


Tret Fure

Nia & Ness

Jeanine DrJazz Normand

Margie Adam, Chris Williamson, Meg Christian, & Holly Near

Kristen Ford

Melanie DeMore

Sharon Katz and the Peace Train

Hardened and Tempered

Barbara Ester and Beth York

Fay Jacobs

Brittany Baldwin