Ann Bannon wrote six lesbian pulp fiction novels from 1957 to 1962. The Beebo Brinker Chronicles were adapted as an award-winning Off-Broadway production. Her novels defied conventions for romance stories and depictions of lesbians by addressing complex homosexual relationships. The books’ enduring popularity and impact on lesbian identity has earned her the title ‘Queen of Lesbian Pulp Fiction’
About Ann Bannon in brief
Ann Bannon wrote six lesbian pulp fiction novels from 1957 to 1962. The Beebo Brinker Chronicles were adapted as an award-winning Off-Broadway production. Her novels defied conventions for romance stories and depictions of lesbians by addressing complex homosexual relationships. She has been described as \”the premier fictional representation of US lesbian life in the fifties and sixties\”, and it has been said that her books’rest on the bookshelf of nearly every even faintly literate Lesbian’ The books are taught in Women’s and LGBT studies courses, and Bannon has received numerous awards for pioneering lesbian and gay literature. The books’ enduring popularity and impact on lesbian identity has earned her the title \”Queen of Lesbian Pulp Fiction\”. The books were republished in 2001 and 2003 and are now available in paperback in the U.S. for the first time since they were first published in the 1950s. The novels were published by Gold Medal Books, a rival company of Torreska Women’s Barracks, a fictional account of Torreka Tereska’s life. They were published in paperback by Pocket Books, who began to distribute through newspapers, newsstands, grocery stores, bus stations and train stations about ten years after World War II. The first book was published in 1957; the last in 1962; the books were released again between 2001 and2003 and were adapted into an Off- Broadway production. The series was inspired by Bannon’s experiences as a young housewife trying to address her own issues of sexuality when she was inspired to write her first novel.
The majority of her characters mirrored people she knew, but their stories reflected a life she did not feel she was able to live. She endured a difficult marriage for 27 years and, as she separated from her husband in the 1980s, she was stunned to learn of their influence on society. In the beginning of her marriage she was left alone quite a lot and said she was desperate to get some of the things that had been consuming her for a long time down on paper down on the ground. She stopped writing in 1962 and later, she earned a doctorate in linguistics and became an academic. She was influenced by the only lesbian novels she had read, The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall from 1928 and Vin Packer’s Spring Fire from 1952, albeit in two different ways: she was unable to relate to the dismal tones in Hall’s novel, but as a sorority girl was more familiar with the plot and circumstances of Spring Fire. She recognized the books struck a chord in herself that compelled her to write about them in the better years of her life and she recognized the emotions in her life that she had never recognized in herself before. She wrote her first book at 22 years old when she began writing her first pulp novel. She grew up in nearby Hinsdale with her mother and stepfather, and had the responsibility of taking care of four siblings due to the family’s financial problems. In 1954, she graduated with a degree in French and soon married an engineer whose job made them relocate frequently.