Alana S. Portero

A writer and cultural analyst, her texts shed light on the nuances of the contemporary varieties of feminism and LGTBI+ activism in Spain.

© Jaime Llamas & Bárbara Lara

Alana S. Portero trained as a medievalist at the Autonomous University of Madrid, the city where she resides and cultivates the word in several ways, including as a writer, playwright, poet, and theatre director. She is also one of the founders of the theatre company STRIGA, in which she has directed and acted. She works with several media outlets, among them Agente provocador,, El Salto Diario, SModa, and Vogue. In her writings, she explores the present-day cultural scene, the contemporary forms of feminism, and LGTBI+ activism, with special emphasis on the experience of trans women, and always observing the factor of social class in her work.

Her first novel, La mala costumbre (Seix Barral, 2023 – forthcoming in English as Bad Habit, Harper Collins, 2024), about the life of a trans woman who grows up in the outskirts of Madrid in the 1980s, has become a literary phenomenon in Spain and is being translated into a dozen languages. The narrator describes the complex situations faced by this character as she tries to find her own space, first as a girl and adolescent and then as an adult in a compartmentalised society that is unwilling to recognise lives that do not conform to the norm.

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