Married Anna Joy Springer (a professor), 2004.
Home—San Diego, CA. E-mail—[email protected]; [email protected]
University of California at San Diego, lecturer. Sister Spit's Ramblin' Road Show, poetry reader, 1997-98.
New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry, 1999; Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Debut Fiction, for The Beautifully Worthless.
The Beautifully Worthless (verse novel), Suspect Thoughts Press (San Francisco, CA), 2005.
The IHOP Papers (novel), Carroll & Graf (New York, NY), 2006.
Contributor of poetry and fiction to journals and anthologies.
Ali Liebegott is a poet and novelist whose first book, The Beautifully Worthless, is "part epic poem, part love letter, part to-do list and part road trip opus," according to Curve contributor P.K. McBee. In the book, a Brooklyn waitress leaves home after a dream beckons her to Camus, Idaho. En route, the protagonist "loses her mind, confuses her sexuality and explores the twin meanings of love and hope," as McBee further explained. Something of a postmodern road trip, Liebegott's book is told both in prose, in the forms of letters to the girlfriend the narrator has left behind, and in verse. Liebegott explained the origin of the book to Anna Joy Springer on the Suspect Thoughts Press Web site: "Originally, the piece started as a poem. I was sitting in this weird basement room in Brooklyn writing one line after the next that started with ‘I wish, I wish.’ Later as the poem developed, I realized it was an epic."
Liebegott's next work, The IHOP Papers, also features a young woman on the run. Francesca is nineteen, a lesbian, and newly arrived in San Francisco. She has come in search of her community college philosophy professor Irene, with whom she is desperately in love. Taking work at a local International House of Pancakes to get by, Francesca looks for solace wherever she can find it, for the object of her affection is now living with another former student, a young man. A contributor to GayWired.com declared the work a "hilarious, heartfelt novel," as well as "a comic portrait of survival and self-discovery." Similary, Jackie Jones, writing in the San Diego Union Tribune, described the novel as "an amusing but bittersweet tale about sexual awakenings, addiction and recovery; attempts at communal living with a narcissist; what it's like growing up gay; how one lives one inch from the gutter but remains hopeful." Jones further observed that the "strength of … [the book] lies in the beautiful but heartbreaking humor of Liebegott's heroine." Further praise came from a Publishers Weekly reviewer who concluded that Liebegott "offers strikingly lyrical moments in an otherwise frank narrative of a writer teetering between adolescence and adulthood."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Entertainment Weekly, February 2, 2007, Katia Hetter, review of The IHOP Papers, p. 127.
Library Journal, December 1, 2006, Caroline Mann, review of The IHOP Papers, p. 111.
Publishers Weekly, November 27, 2006, review of The IHOP Papers, p. 31.
San Diego Union Tribune (San Diego, CA), February 18, 2007, Jackie Jones, review of The IHOP Papers.
Curve,http://www.curvemag.com/ (March 12, 2007), P.K. McBee, review of The Beautifully Worthless.
GayWired.com,http://www.gaywired.com/ (November 28, 2006), review of The IHOP Papers.
University of California, San Diego Guardian Online,http://www.ucsdguardian.org/ (February 20, 2007), Neil Spears, "UCSD Couple Joins Thousands in Gay Marriage."
Let's Do It on the Road,http://www.letsdoitontheroad.com/ (March 12, 2007), Susan Chenelle, "Catching Up with the Rent Girls and Beautifully Worthless Tour."
Suspect Thoughts Press Web site,http://www.suspectthoughtspress.com/ (March 12, 2007), Anna Joy Springer, "Seducing Women with Gorgeous Manipulation of Imagery and Lyricism: Ali Liebegott Interview."