The wait is over. For Colored Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Still Not Enough will be released next week. The much-anticipated new anthology is edited by New York Times bestselling author and television commentator Keith Boykin.
"For Colored Boys will be available online on August 8 and in bookstores on August 13," Boykin told Rod 2.0. "It will also be available as an e-book once it's released."
For Colored Boys collects the writings of more than three dozen Black LGBT writers—read the full list and bios—media personalities, activists, scholars and other thought leaders. The book was launched in the wake of numerous "young Black men literally committing suicide in the silence of their own communities" such as Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover, Jaheem Herrera, Raymond Chase, Joseph Jefferson and others reported on Rod 2.0, Boykin announced last summer.
"It's been a long process but I'm finally glad that it's done," Boykin told R20 on Monday. "I am very excited about the book. It's going to make a huge difference for many people. So much has happened this year. President Obama endorsing same-sex marriage, Frank Ocean's new CD and many other news stories fit right into the themes of the book."
The publication For Colored Boys is very timely. A new survey was released last month that found a shocking 43 percent of Black gay youth have considered or attempted suicide as a result of issues related to their sexual orientation. Almost one in ten have been sexually or physically abused.
The publication also comes as new data released last week at AIDS 2012 revealed that Black gay men have been more affected by HIV/AIDS than any "other population in the world." The trend has been particularly “alarming” among young Black gay men aged 13 to 19, according to the Centers for Disease Controls. New infections have increased by almost half between 2006 and 2009.
For Colored Boys includes 44 contributions from 42 authors, "including 37 African-Americans, 3 Latinos, 1 Asian-American, 1 Canadian and 1 British writer," Keith Boykin told R20. "The contributors' ages range from 23 to 63. We have at least 5 writers in their 20s."
Many of the names should be familiar to R20 readers. For Colored Boys includes contributions from myself, Darian Aaron, Jamal Brown, Topher Campbell, Wade Davis, Kenyon Farrow, L. Michael Gipson, James Earl Hardy, DeMarco Majors, David Malebranche, B. Scott, Rob Smith, Kevin E. Tayor, Craig Washington, Tim'm West, Nathan H. Williams and Emanuel Xavier. The anthology will include nine poems. In addition to Keith Boykin, the editors include young filmmaker Mark Corece and author/scholar Frank Leon Roberts.
Stay tuned for more details on publication, the book tour and more. The Twitter hahtags are #ForColoredBoys and #ColoredBoys.