When a boy who dresses as a girl, but has no wish to transition, is confronted with a boisterous crowd of transgender youth in search of a safe haven.
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes
From a boy lost in a book to…
At the beginning of October last year I started writing The Boy in the Book, fascinated by the way we move in an out of stories of our own and others’ making. What would happen, I wondered, if someone could control the passage from story to story both for themselves and for others? Inevitably, power-hungry adults latched on to the ability and sought to control the person using it…
…an insistent gaggle of colourful people
At the end of January this year, I’d reached the halfway mark of The Boy in the Book, when a new book clamoured to be written, Colourful People, a fourth book in the Boy & Girl saga. I couldn’t resist the temptation. Despite being visited by COVID in March and pneumonia two months later, I have completed over two thirds of the new novel with more than 80’000 words written to date.
The first three books of the Boy & Girl saga focused on the empowerment of young people, girls in particular, in a story about a boy, Peter, who lived dressed as a girl and the adventures he had with Kate, the enterprising daughter of a magician from another world. It was an occasion to explore, amongst many other things, what it means to dress as a young girl without wanting to transition to a ‘full-time’ girl. Not that such a possibility existed back then in the sixties.
In Colourful People, I wanted to confront Peter and Kate and their community of Lost Girls with a boisterous crowd of young transgender people in search of a haven to become themselves. What would this disruption lead to? Many aspects link these Colourful People to the Lost Girls, not least the fierce will to be themselves despite the determined opposition of society. Despite this inherent kinship, both Kate and Peter, for different reasons, are initially hesitant about extending a helping hand, but then challenging circumstances decided them otherwise.