I am a queer immigrant from Eastern Europe. While most people started to write as children, I was thirty-something before I finally chose the language in which to write: English, which is either my third, fourth, or fifth (quazi)native tongue. I was born in Ukraine, and lived in subarctic Russia and Israel before coming to the US for graduate school at UC Berkeley, where I eventually acquired an unsurprising PhD in linguistics. I now live and teach in the Midwestern US.
The struggle for language, for voice, and the often uneasy melding of cultures and viewpoints inform my life and my writing. I am passionate about diversity in SFF and elsewhere, and I often advocate for diversity through my essays and editorial work. My stories have appeared in Strange Horizons, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, and other places. My poetry has appeared in Apex, Goblin Fruit, Jabberwocky, and elsewhere, was nominated for the Rhysling multiple times, and has won the Rannu competition. I have written a secondary world fantasy novel, Bridgers, which I am currently querying.
Personal things you might want to know about me are these:
I am a single parent of a child with moderate to severe autism. My son is minimally verbal and wonderful, and I am a firm advocate for neurodiversity.
I am queer and genderqueer. By queer I mean that I am rarely attracted to cisgendered men. By genderqueer I mean that I strongly identify with both binary genders. I am comfortable with ‘woman’ socially, but it is not the sum total of my identity. My pronouns are “she” and “they.” I use “she” in most author bios. Though I ID as a woman, I do not participate in binarist projects (e.g. I will not submit to ‘stories by women’ anthologies).
I had identified as Jewish Orthodox and been in a heterosexual marriage for over a decade, until late 2012. These two identities went together. I no longer identify as Jewish Orthodox, though I keep a similar level of observance. If you are interested in my thoughts on non-binary gender and Jewish Orthodoxy, check out the essay I wrote in response to a story by Bogi Takács.
Interviews with me:
- Strange Horizons: “Noticing Language,” with Julia Rios
- Outer Alliance Spotlight
- Fantastique Unfettered 2 (print)
- at the Interstitial Arts foundation, with Mike Allen
- Mythpunk roundtable at Strange Horizons, with JoSelle Vanderhooft
- at WC Roberts’ blog (with a mini-flamewar in the comments)
- at Fantasy Magazine, about my story Geddarien
If you’d like to get in touch, please email rose dot lemberg at gmail. Thanks!