MacManus, Yvonne (Paula Christian)
Paula Christian was identified as Yvonne MacManus in Barbara Grier’s biography, Indominable: The Live of Barbara Grier by Joanne Passet. In addition to the lesbian-themed books penned under Paula Christian, MacManus wrote under her own name in several genres including science fiction, horror and romance. She also worked as an editor for several paperback publishers including Dell, Major Books. Leisure Books and Brandon.
In the late 1970s, MacManus and her partner, Jo Anne Prather founded Timely Books which reissued many of the Paula Christian books, marketing them to women’s bookstores. In a 1980 interview with the Sinister Wisdom (a lesbian literary journal) a Timely Books representative lamented that an inaccurate reporting of Christian’s identity caused problems with sales and with editors refusing to review the reissued books. Marie Kuda’s Women Loving Women: A Select and Annotated Bibliography of Women Loving Women in Literature (1975) had identified Paula Christian as the pen name for Helen Baker Eastwood and stated that “This author was last heard of editing porno novels for a paperback house (Brandon) after repudiating her lesbian books. Insists vehemently she is not a lesbian”. In 1978, Macmanus was a speaker at the Lesbain Writer's Conference organized by Kuda but the inaccurate representation of Paula Christians identity persisted. This illustrates the challenges some authors faced in the changing political climate from the closeted 1950s to the militant 1970s.
Baim, Tracy. Out and Proud in Chicago: An Overview of the City's Gay Community. Chicago: Surrey Books, 2008.
Kinard, Lee. “Timely Books”. Sinister Wisdom Vol. 13, 1980. pp. 86-87. sinisterwisdom.org/sites/default/files/Sinister%20Wisdom%2013.pdf
Kuda, Marie J. Women Loving Women: A Select and Annotated Bibliography of Women Loving Women in Literature. Chicago: Womanpress, 1975.
Passet, Joanne. Indomitable: The Life of Barbara Grier. Tallahassee: Bella Books, 2016.