Donna Minkowitz is an unclassifiable writer who author Mary Gaitskill has celebrated as “original, energetic, witty, and meaty.” Lilith Magazine lauded Minkowitz for her “fierce imagination and compelling prose,” and Kirkus has praised the “defiant and playful energy” of her work. Science fiction author Terry Bisson called her writing “rich and wild, dark and funny, as fearless as her legendary journalism and as scary as a fairy tale.”
She just started a Substack — subscribe here!
Her most recent memoir is Growing Up Golem, a finalist for both a Lambda Literary Award and the Judy Grahn Nonfiction Award. It’s a “memoir with fantasy” written as though instead of giving birth to her, her mother had created her as her own personal golem. Writer Ellis Avery called Golem “brilliant, exciting, startlingly fresh,” and Lily Burana said of the work, “Her writing is magic.”
Minkowitz’s first book was Ferocious Romance: What My Encounters with the Right Taught Me about Sex, God, and Fury.
It’s about what she was startled to discover she had in common with her archenemies, the Christian right, after doing investigative reporting on them for the Voice and Ms. for years as an openly queer reporter.
Ferocious Romance won a Lambda Literary Award for Best Book On Religion/Spirituality and was a finalist for the Quality Paperback Book Club’s New Visions Award “for the most promising or distinctive work by a new author.”
Minkowitz’s take-no-prisoners journalism has appeared in the New York Times Book Review, The Nation, New York magazine, Salon and the Village Voice, where she was a columnist for seven years.
According to director Kimberly Peirce, the movie “Boys Don’t Cry” was directly inspired by Minkowitz’s 1994 Village Voice article about Brandon Teena, the 21-year-old trans man murdered in Falls City, Nebraska. (She recently revisited that article here.)
Donna successfully disguised herself as a 16-year-old Christian boy to report undercover on the Promise Keepers, the rightwing men’s group, for Ms. Magazine.
In the 2010s, she became the inaugural food and restaurant critic for Gay City News, New York City’s LGBTQ paper, creating a column which sought to bring a radical, sensual, lyrical, and queer perspective to food writing.
After the election of Donald Trump, she began doing deep-dive investigative reporting on the white nationalist movement for The Nation, Slate, The Forward, and the progressive think tank Political Research Associates. Since 2000, she’s also been performing as a storyteller at The Artichoke, Queer Memoir, and other live shows throughout New York State.
Minkowitz is currently working on a new work of autofiction, tentatively titled Donnaville. You can find excerpts from it on the blog.
Donna teaches memoir writing classes and works as a writing coach.
Please follow her on all the socials: @donnaminkowitz on Instagram and
Literary agent: Valerie Borchardt at Georges Borchardt, Inc.
All contents (c) Donna Minkowitz 2011-2023
10 Replies to “About”
Wow Donna! Your blog is outstanding!! In the midst of my morning ritual to arrive on time for the day job, but I can’t wait to sit and read every word of your wonderful and so engaging work. Big gentle hug.
Big Fan! Angela
Oh man, thanks so much, Angela! Your comment made my day.
Hi Donna, will you be doing any memoir writing workshops this fall? Thank you
Hi Katherine. Yes, I have a workshop starting this week, on Wednesday the 21st in Brooklyn! I will email you to let you know the details. Thanks for writing.
Hi: Couldn’t locate a contact address here. I am very interested in taking a memoir writing class in NYC with you. Saw that you are teaching a class at JCC now, and I can’t make that class (and too late anyway). Will you be teaching in the summer? Any info would be appreciated!
Hi Stefanie. Thanks for writing. I’ve answered you privately, but you and others can contact me at growingupgolem AT gmail.com. 🙂
I want to follow your writing but I can’t find a sign up sheet! Please include me! Lovely meeting you !
Hi Lauren. It was wonderful to meet you, too, and thank you so much for writing!! There is a subscription sign-up sheet, but I just realized that it’s only visible on the full version of this website, not the mobile version. 🙁
While I get this fixed, you can sign up on the full version of donnaminkowitz.com, and I will add you to my regular email list! All best 🙂 – Donna