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building a platform for the  LGBTQIA+ community

While some stories may start in the margins, we believe they should be shared with the majority. 

Purpled Palm Press collaborates with the LGBTQIA+ community, to publish books, poems, essays and anthologies. 


Lou Barrett
founder + writer

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Lou Barrett (they/them or she/her) is a gay non-binary person with a BA in English. While their background is in tutoring and creative writing, their biggest passions have been in all things gender and sexuality. Lou always assumed her interests in gender theory, alternative relationship styles like polyamory and non-monogamy, butch culture, bi-visibility and bi-erasure, the trans experience, intersex rights, gender expression, non-binary identities, lesbianism, etc were because of their first, most long-term, and beloved identity as a lesbian. Then they realized that a lot of their literary and theoretical interests are not inherently interesting to all queer people. 

They are passionate about representation, and it’s life-saving and life-changing abilities. Queer film is on the rise with more dynamic storylines and characters, but many of the tired tropes are still alive and well. 

She started a storytelling show called Let It Out (@letitoutcle) a year ago to give a local platform to queer people, because she saw more white dudes in zip ups than anyone else. More than 60% of the storytellers that have been on the show identify as LGBTQ+ and it’s the only storytelling show hosted by queer people in Cleveland. With Purpled Palm Press, Lou wants to help real life people share their real life experiences about their identities with as many people as possible. Our stories are not only interesting when they’re tragic and cinematic. People should care about our stories, because they have value. The more fair and true representation we have, the more our community can thrive and be seen as equals in society.

“I want to see a biker dyke who is too busy growing her small business to care about love. Or about a man whose mother and husband share inside jokes. No one fears a petite long-haired brunette and her blonde cheerleader girlfriend so we don’t need any more stories about them right now. I don’t need to see another boy crying in his closet of shame seeing his sexuality as a curse rather than a gift, because I’ve seen enough of it. I have been spoon fed the story that my life is nothing but a never-ending uphill battle toward tolerance, and that I’d be lucky to accept myself let alone gain the acceptance of others. I don’t accept this as our community’s truth.”