Drew Hayden Taylor

Drew Hayden Taylor
Meet the Playwright

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A Letter About Pride

Dear Joan, Readers, Writers, Literary Folk,
Thunder Bay's 2nd Annual Pride Week is hosting an outstanding line-up of events and activities June 10th - 16th, 2012. We are pleased to announce Thunder Pride's celebrations include a full night of literature and story telling.

Thunder Pride's Literary and Storytelling Event takes place on Tuesday, June 12th at the Mary J.L. Black Library, 7:00 pm.

Mary J.L. Black Library is located at 901 S. Edward St, Thunder Bay. The building is accessible, admission is 100% free, and everyone is welcome. Light snacks and refreshments will be provided. (If you would like a good seat, please consider arriving early. Last year's literary event was full to capacity).

Award winning Zoe Whittall will join a powerful team of exceptionally talented local writers and story tellers; folks who are proud to call the north shores of Lake Superior home. We would like to thank Susan Goldberg, Ma-Nee Chacaby, Ray Moonias, and Rachel Mishenene for happily agreeing to share their words with us on June 12th. But it doesn't end there. We are also pleased to announce the addition of two young, promising writers from Thunder Bay's youth group, The Other 10%. We couldn't be happier with the line-up.
 
Please consider marking the day on your calendar. Wear your favourite shirt, bring a date, and expect an evocative night of excellent literature. See you there.


Zoe Whittall:The Globe and Mail has stated: “Zoe Whittall might just be the cockiest, brashest, funniest, toughest, most life-affirming, elegant, scruffy, no-holds-barred writer to emerge from Montreal since Mordecai Richler...” Clearly, Zoe has had many successful achievements over the years. She is the author of two particularly distinguished novels: Bottle Rocket Hearts and Holding Still As Long As Possible. Zoe’s most recent novel, Holding Still As Long As Possible, was shortlisted for the Relit Awards; named the American Library Association’s Stonewall book of honour; and is the winner of the prestigious Lambda Award. Zoe, with her wit, talent, and sheer force of humour is sure to draw a crowd.


Susan Goldberg is a writer, editor, essayist and blogger, and co-editor of the award-winning anthology And Baby Makes More: Known Donors, Queer Parents, and Our Unexpected Families. Her personal essays have been featured in Ms. magazine, Lilith magazine, Here Come the Brides, McGraw-Hill Ryerson’s iLit textbook series, Xtra!, interfaithfamily.com and The Globe & Mail, among others. Her CBC radio documentary, Finding Out, aired in 2006. In 2002, she won the Editors’ Association of Canada Tom Fairley Award for her substantive work on the essay anthology Misinformed Consent: Thirteen Women Share Their Stories of Unnecessary Hysterectomy. Susan blogs about, among other things, cancer, (queer) motherhood, sleep deprivation and toe jam at www.mamanongrata.com. She’s currently working on a novel, called Step on a Crack.

 Ma-Nee Chacaby:
Ma-Nee is a key staple among Northwestern Ontario artists, literary and otherwise. Ma-Nee is a respected Elder and Two Spirited mentor. She has shared her repertoire of stories and narratives with hundreds of adoring, giggling, children through her work with the Lakehead Public School Board and the Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board. She has presented her written work in venues across Northwestern Ontario. Ma-Nee is also well known for her visual art work. Ma-Nee will be showing her paintings on June 17th at Thunder Pride's Waterfront event.

 Ray Moonias:
Ray's home community of Eabametoong First Nation produced a true poet. Ray stole the show at last year's Thunder Pride Literary event with his moving performance and clear descriptions of hope, brightness, love and longing. Ray has a full schedule as an activist, a volunteer and an honour role student at Confederation College. Ray is very supportive of the Negahneewin College Learning Cafe where he can be found reading his work on Wednesday nights. Ray jumps in with both feet, leaving his audience to reap the rewards of a candid, lucid performance.

Rachel Mishenene:
Rachel is one of two education advisors for McGraw-Hill's Native Studies/Literacy book, "Strength and Struggle: Perspectives from First Nation, Inuit and Metis Peoples in Canada." Rachel selected well-crafted short stories, poems, songs and visual art by First Nation, Metis ad Inuit people across Canada and developed the corresponding lessons for educators and students. Rachel is a PhD candidate with the Faculty of Education at Lakehead University. Importantly, Rachel's own creative endeavours are rich in imagery, humour and poignant commentary.

We would like to thank the Thunder Bay Children's Centre for recognizing the importance of contributions made by young people who are part of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and questioning communities. Thanks to the work of Julia McArthur and Betsy Martin Thunder Bay now offers a drop-in group for youth 12 - 25 years old. Meetings are held at the Centre of Change every second Monday from 5:00 - 7:00 pm. Representatives from The Other 10% will boldly share their creative writing and performance skills at the Thunder Pride Literary and Storytelling Event. This highlight of the night will offer everyone an opportunity to show support for young, promising writers.

The Thunder Pride Literary and Storytelling event is sponsored by the Thunder Pride Committee, the Northern Woman's Bookstore, Thunder Bay Public Library, Lakehead University Student Union's Gender Issues Centre, Pride Centre and Aboriginal Awareness Centre, as well as contributions by Sweet Peas Restaurant and the Prince Arthur Hotel.

Last year’s Literary Event drew a full house, standing room only. This year the event will take place on Tuesday, June 12th at the new Mary JL Black Library in Thunder Bay. Our first writer will take the stage at 7:00 pm sharp.

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