Trans Teen Survival Guide is a new book written by trans activists Owl (Ugla Stefanía) and Fox Fisher where they try to answer all the questions that growing up as trans raises.
“We decided to write this book because it was something that we didn’t have access to growing up,” Owl says when asked about the reason for writing Trans Teen Survival Guide. “We had no information or resources that could have helped us navigate this world as young trans people, which made us internalise a lot of shame and we weren’t able to come out until later in life. If we had access to something like this, our lives would’ve been made a lot easier and we would’ve been affirmed in our identities. We created it so that the younger generation can feel a sense of support and affirmation about who they are, and they can see themselves represented, cared for and loved.”
Asked to provide an example about the topics the book covers Owl is quick to answer.
“The topics we cover span a wide range of issues, many of which we wished we had some knowledge on when we were younger. It gives trans teens advice on how they can broach the issue of coming out and how to make arrangements in case that isn’t safe for them to do, how to deal with dysphoria, how to prepare for doing media appearances and how to make sure they aren’t taking advantage of you, what types of clothes give you certain looks depending on what you want to achieve. It also goes into dating as a trans person, and how to practice self care. Often trans people exhaust themselves in activism or with awareness raising, and we think it’s so important, even though to some it might be completely obvious, that people take time out and do something to take care of themselves. Being trans is really tough as it is – treat yourself to a bathbomb and do some yoga every now and then!”
“The topics we cover span a wide range of issues, many of which we wished we had some knowledge on when we were younger.”
Trans Teen Survival Guide is doing well in the harsh world of bookselling and Owl says the response has been amazing.
“The response has been really, really positive so far. Just been looking at how it’s doing on amazon, and it’s already a #1 seller in the category “homosexuality” – which is where most trans books end up anyway, ironically – and has been doing really well so far in terms of sales. We’re absolutely chuffed by the response and we hope that it really helps trans teens feel assured in who they are.”
Are there any events coming up to promote the book?
“We recently had our book launch at Waterstones in London, but we will be doing some more events in the near future, including a book reading at the Lush offices in London and the Jubilee Library in Brighton. Stay tuned for dates!”
Have you thought about translating the book into Icelandic?
“At the moment we haven’t looked into translating it, but we will approach our publishers at some point and see if that’s something that would be possible. Fingers crossed!” Ugla says, sounding genuinely excited.
What are your hopes for the impact the book will have in the trans community?
“We hope that not only trans teens will read the book, but also their allies, friends, families and all sorts of service providers and people that just generally want to know more about trans issues. It would be ideal for schools to cover and do lesson plans from, as it covers many issues that trans teens might be going through, and is a useful tool to gain some more information or help others understand trans teens and their struggles just a little better.”
We at GayIceland certainly second those hopes and wish Ugla and Fox all the best with it.
The profits for the books sales will also benefit the trans community in other ways. If people follow this link when buying the book, a part of it will be donated to Mermaids, that supports trans youth and their families.