top of page

Female Transgressive Writers of all time (Part 2)

Time to talk about another 5 fantastic authors that I categorize under Transgressive Fiction according to their style and themes, how they use the power of writing to transgress the norms of their society and culture. Today we will talk about Lauren Sapala, Christa Faust, Jody Scott, Poppy Z. Brite, and Joan Didion.

Riya Anne Polcastro

Riya Anne Polcastro is the author of Jane and Dentata. On her Amazon page, she mentions that she lives in the Pacific Northwest where she enjoys taking photographs of dead things. On her GoodReads she wrote, "armed with a useless liberal arts degree, Riya Anne Polcastro is a student of human behavior and a conduit for raw words.

Maybe it is because she learned to read and write in her second language before she learned to do the same in her first. Maybe it is because she was raised a missionary’s daughter at the same time that she was taught to question everything. Maybe there are a whole lot of reasons. Either way, her fascination with mental illness and human interaction is weaved into fiction with a language that is at times caressed and loved, at others beaten into submission."

Lauren Sapala is a writing coach based in San Francisco, CA. After her creative writing professor in college told her that it's better for her to give up writing, she stopped writing for seven years. But when she was stumbled upon an unconventional writing group based on the format of Alcoholics Anonymous that she started writing again and discovered her own creative gifts. Combining her own personal experience as an intuitive introvert with the experiences of her clients, she decided to write a book detailing the unique temperament and creative process of sensitive intuitive writers. My favorite book of hers is Between the Shadow and Lo.

"I like the darkness of transgressive fiction, and the absurd humor, but most of all I like the way it breaks through boundaries." 
- Lauren Sapala

Christa Faust

(June 21, 1969)

Christa Faust is an American author who writes original novels, as well as novelizations, and media tie-ins. She sold her first short story when she moved to LA in the early 90s. (source) She’s an avid reader and collector of vintage paperbacks and a Film Noir enthusiast. She writes primarily Hardboiled crime fiction. My favorite among her 11 novels is Choke Hold and Fringe series.

I seem to be inside a kind of artificial environment. Almost like a... a simulacrum of Reiden Lake.
- Christa Faust

Jody Scott

(Jan 13, 1923- Dec 24, 2007 )

Jody Scott was an award-winning American writer. Her novels attracted critical and peer acclaim though most of her works remained unpublished during her lifetime. Scott was a satirist fiction writer and adapted speculative and mainstream fiction to critique society and question the nature of reality. Her SciFi series The Benaroya Chronicles became cult classics of feminist satire in the 1980s and were widely praised for their hilarity and originality. (source)

“A prime test for madness and paranoia is called ‘insurance.’ If a species has ‘insurance,’ it is patently doomed. Only a toylike, salivating, pent-up bunch of gruntlings could conceive of such a sociopathic type of gambling.”
― Jody Scott, I, Vampire

Poppy Z. Brite

I would like to add Billy Martin known as Poppy Z. Brite born on May 25, 1967, to this list. Brite is an American author and initially achieved notoriety in the gothic horror genre of literature in the early 1990s by publishing a string of successful novels and short story collections. His later work moved into the genre of dark comedy, with many stories set in the New Orleans restaurant world. Martin's novels are typically standalone books but may feature recurring characters from previous novels and short stories. Much of his work features openly bisexual and gay characters.

He has written and talked extensively about his gender dysphoria and transgender issues. He is a gay man, and has said, "Ever since I was old enough to know what gay men were, I've considered myself a gay man that happens to have been born in a female body, and that's the perspective I'm coming from." In 2003, Martin wrote that, while gender theorists like Kate Bornstein would call him a "non-operative transsexual", Martin would not insist on a label, writing "I'm just me". In August 2010, he began hormone therapy, and in 2011 expressed that he would prefer to be referred to by male pronouns. (source)

"The night is the hardest time to be alive and 4am knows all my secrets."
— Poppy Z. Brite

Joan Didion

Joan Didion is an American writer who launched her career after winning an essay contest sponsored by Vogue magazine in the 1960s(source).

Her political writing often concentrated on the

the subtext of political and social rhetoric. In 1991, she wrote the earliest mainstream media article to suggest the Central Park Five had been wrongfully convicted. (source) She’s best known for her novels and her literary journalism in which she explores the disintegration of American morals and cultural chaos, where the overriding theme is individual and social fragmentation. A sense of anxiety or dread permeates much of her work. (source)

"I write entirely to find out what I'm thinking, what I'm looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear."
— Joan Didion

219 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page