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Howard Sturtz
August 8, 2022


Memorial for Corey Tax

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Memorial Contribution: Trans Lifeline
195 41st St #11253
Oakland, CA 94611-9991
(510) 771-1417

Corey Alexander (1974-2020), a beloved writer, educator, and friend to many of us in the romance, erotica, and science fiction and fantasy writing communities, passed away on August 13, 2020, from complications related to diabetes.

Corey Alexander was a queer trans disabled fat Jewish activist, educator, and writer. Under the name Xan West, they wrote queer kink erotica and romance that centered trans, queer, disabled, neurodivergent, and fat characters. Show Yourself To Me, their collection of their best erotica stories, won an honorable mention for the National Leather Association John Preston short fiction award. Their most recent books in print included Eight Kinky Nights, Tenderness, Nine of Swords, Reversed, and Their Troublesome Crush, all centering fat, queer, and neurodivergent protagonists finding love, belonging, and friendship. For many years, Corey was working on their novel Shocking Violet, and we believe that Corey was close to completing that novel when they passed away. On their blog and in other outlets, Corey published powerful and influential nonfiction essays on kink, queerness and transness, stone sexuality, trauma, survivorship, disability, neurodivergence, and issues of representation in literature.

Corey spent a decade doing kink and sexuality education, and later translated many of their community education classes into blog posts and essays accessible to a wider audience, particularly around trans, fat, and disability representation. They maintained a list of links to reviews of trans and/or non-binary literature, written by trans and/or non-binary reviewers. They also had a monthly column at Erotica Readers and Writers offering writing craft tools and advice for erotica writers. Corey worked in the trauma field for many years, and drew from that and their own experience with PTSD to offer support and knowledge about trauma and coping, both on their Twitter, on their blog, and in private conversations. They continually supported the work of marginalized writers. Corey supported and nurtured many people through conversations, encouragement, recommendations, and advice. Their persistent advocacy for inclusion and equity in the fields of romance and erotica was vital within our communities. Their kind, generous, and supportive presence was meaningful to so many people. Corey was a wonderful friend. They loved showtunes, sharing movies and books with friends, fluffy animals, and good food, especially Jewish and Chinese food. Corey is sorely missed every day by their friends and the wider communities which they enriched with their presence and their work.

Donations in Corey’s memory can be made to the Trans Lifeline.