Voices from the Rainbow
by Traci Leigh Taylor, Mother Warrior Press, October, 2014
When Traci Leigh Taylor's son, Daniel, came out to her at age 15, she was confused and worried about the kind of life he would have as a gay man.
And she admits that, at that point, her son seemed like a stranger to her.
Traci started a project of interviewing Daniel and his friends about their coming-out experiences. Daniel, who is now a Broadway performer, seems to have helped by introducing her to everybody he knows. One thing led to another, outreach became broader, and the book is national in scope, containing more than 50 interviews, unsent letters, and other meditations on being young and queer at the beginning of the 21st century. Traci promised people that their stories would heard, and Voices from the Rainbow makes good on the promise.
Writing the book was a life-changing experience for Traci, with grown children and grandchildren, who up to that point hadn't had much reason to look outside of the heterocentric world where she grew up. She says she's more comfortable in the gay world than in the straight world now, and more understanding of the universal need for love and acceptance.
She's planning another collection of stories, this one involving the words of LGBTQ elders.
There's an excellent interview of "Momma Traci" on the website of PQ Monthly, Portland, Oregon's LGBTQ print-and-internet publication:
Traci's personal website, with contact information and links to purchase, is
Here are some comments about Voices from the Rainbow:
- “VOICES from the RAINBOW offers a chance to hear the deeply personal stories and share the secrets of the LGBTQ community in a way that will first crack open and then heal your heart. Taylor creates a safe harbor for self-discovery, conflict, love and acceptance. VOICES FROM THE RAINBOW shines a light on the shared humanity that is common to us all.”
— Tom Viola, Executive Director, BROADWAY CARES/EQUITY FIGHTS AIDS
- “Taylor has taken her love, compassion, and caring around the country to get people’s stories and has beautifully melded them with her own inspirational story. Voices from the Rainbow combats hate and homophobia while helping LGBTQ youth to learn to love themselves.”
— Fred M. Caruso, Award-winning producer, writer, director, and actor: The Big Gay Musical
- “The power and beauty of what Taylor has accomplished is undeniable and reveals powerful emotional truths. Taylor's book operates at the level of the profoundly personal but finishes with a strong sense not only of a community of compassionate, intelligent souls, but of our society's continued need to better support our LGBTQ members. They are, after all, our children.”
— Dan DeWeese, Writing Center Coordinator, Portland State University and author, You Don't Love This Man
P.O. Box 3646 • Portland, OR 97208-3646 • email@example.com
Copyright © 2015, Gay & Lesbian Archives of the Pacific Northwest