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Bold Strokes Book Festival, Nottingham, by Victoria Villaseñor

7 Jun

Women and Words

Hey, friends! As Jove and I talked about in the Women and Words podcast last week, I did manage to track author and editor Victoria Villaseñor down and she graciously blogged her thoughts about the Bold Strokes Books festival in Nottingham. This was the 8th annual there, but this year was different because of horrific events that occurred in Manchester and London.

She told me she was a little worried about including her thoughts about that, but I told her that what happened was no doubt on the minds of people at the festival, and acknowledging it doesn’t detract from the festival, but rather recognizes our connections to each other, to our communities, and helps us with solidarity in the face of such terrible occurrences.

Here’s Vic with her thoughts.

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At 3am on Sunday morning, my phone started buzzing. Because I have family in the States, I don’t turn…

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Pre-event pondering

2 Jun

Source: Pre-event pondering

The Importance of “Me Time”.

2 Jun

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It can be so hard to see the positives when everything is going wrong and it seems likes there’s only negative things happening. And some days, weeks, even months can be more difficult to deal with and extra exhausting than others.

But it’s okay to take time out and look after yourself. In fact, it’s more than okay, it’s essential. If today is a bad day and I can only summon the energy to stumble downstairs wearing my pyjamas and eat a humongous bag of chocolate while crying at a soppy film…that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I might text rather than speak to people but I will still let my loved ones know I love them. There’s no guilt. No pressure to act okay, when I don’t feel okay. It’s me time. The opportunity to take comfort in simple things and not feel bad or guilty for “wasting” a day.

And if today is a good day and I feel amazing, well that’s awesome. I will try and get as much done as I can. I will do the things I enjoy and make time to speak, visit, spend time with my loved ones and tell them how much I love them. Hug them. Make them laugh.

As my Irish gran used to say, “we’re here for a good time, not a long time.” There’s no such thing as a perfect life. We should not be so hard on ourselves. All we can do is our best, at this particular moment in time. 🙂

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Deeper Connections by Sandy Lowe

2 Jun

Source: Deeper Connections by Sandy Lowe

Deeper Connections by Sandy Lowe

2 Jun

Bold Strokes Books, UK

girls-next-door-lesbian-romance

In the modern digital age, there is a case to be made for using the Internet make our lives easier. Want a recipe? A book? An Uber at 3am? The Internet is happy to provide (and to profit). Less obvious, but just as life changing is the way cyberspace has transformed the social realm. We make friends, colleagues, lovers and even enemies online, opening ourselves up to a social network that transcends time and place.  For LGBTQ people this network can be life changing: increasing avenues for acceptance, support, resources and even as a vehicle for finding just the right happily ever after.

Social media has made it so that everything we share online can be viewed by friends, friends of friends, and often even strangers we’d never actually consider friends. Inevitably, this leads to impression management, curating just the right collection of filter-hazed photos, anecdotes, witty retorts and hashtags…

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Rescuing the Damsel by Robyn Nyx

1 Jun

Source: Rescuing the Damsel by Robyn Nyx

Rescuing the Damsel by Robyn Nyx

1 Jun

Bold Strokes Books, UK

escape-in-time


“People sleep peacably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” George Orwell 

Right now, it seems that the rough men are doing violence on behalf of the wrong people. I’ve been asked to write four hundred words on the importance of safe places for LGBTQ people. I have immense trouble telling a story succinctly, so this is quite an ask. The marvellous authors that have already gone before me have eloquently delved into the political ramifications of what’s currently being perpetrated against us as a community so I’m not going to reiterate their arguments (again, impossible for me to do so in four hundred words, but catch me this weekend, and we can go to town on these issues).

As an avid reader, my safe space has often been between the soft yet crisp, wonderfully-scented pages of the beautiful works…

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