Please note the deadline has changed to April 28, 2012.
Attention all queer and trans youth ages 14 to 20 years old:
Award winning writer and storyteller Ivan Coyote has a new book coming out, and this one is FOR YOU. One in Every Crowd is a collection of short short stories collected from over fifteen years of Coyote’s work, along with a bunch of brand new never been in print stuff too, designed to help LGBT students find themselves in its pages. The book launches in Vancouver at the WISE Hall on Thursday, May 3rd, and it is going to be a very special night. In addition to reading from the new book, Ivan will also be hosting a queer youth talent show. If you are a singer, dancer, poet, storyteller, drag artist, baton twirler, or otherwise creatively minded, please send Ivan a short (maximum three to four minute) video clip (or link to a youtube or Facebook video) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ten most fabulous acts will be selected to perform as part of the book launch. All artists selected to perform will receive free admission for themselves and one guest pass, a free copy of the book, and a small cash honorarium for their performance.
Deadline for entries is April 28th. Solo or ensemble acts are all eligible. Applications are welcome from outside of the Vancouver area, but if you are selected to perform and you have to travel to be a part of it, you are responsible for your own travel and accommodations. Participants will be notified no later than May 1, 2012.
Any questions? Please contact Cynara at Arsenal Pulp Press at 604-687-4233, or at email@example.com.
For more information on Ivan Coyote and her work, please go to www.ivanecoyote.com.
Read an excerpt from One in Every Crowd here (PDF link).
Check out a video of Ivan Coyote performing a piece in Seattle. Transcription below the jump.
Ivan Coyote reading a letter:
Dear younger self:
Floss your teeth.
It turns out you will eventually be a working artist, just like you always dreamed.
A man named Stephen Harper (I live in a country called Canada, right above you – we have a … anyway) … a man named Stephen Harper will one day rule this land, and he will care nothing for artists, or queers, or even health care.
It turns out you need your teeth, and you alone will be financially responsible for them. Floss is cheaper than even your commie pinko East-end lesbian dentist will be.
Dear younger self:
Quit smoking. Please see above.
I am not going to say this again.
Okay, I am. Quit smoking right now.
Your mother is worried that no one will like you, or hire you, or even love you if you look like that. She is wrong. This next bit is really important; are you listening, younger self? Your mother does not mean to intentionally do you harm or cause you to fear what and who you truly are. She just worries because she fears what the world might do to you, and because she doesn’t know any tattooed butch storytellers with biceps and a brush cut – yet. But one day she will, and she is going to love the hell out of future you. Trust me on this one.
Do not cave into the pressure from mainstream society to fit in. You do not, and will not, ever fit in, and one day you will realize you don’t even want to anymore, and that your difference is inherently tied to your beauty and your bravery and your giant, mystical, invisible brass balls. You will grow to love these balls, younger self, and they will swing majestically – between your ears, inside the head you will hold up proudly.
Do not cave into the pressure from the queer community to fit in, either. Make your own decisions. Trust your own heart. Being butch is not just a bus stop on the highway to transitioning – except when it is. You will learn to love your butch self, and if you ever do decide to go on testosterone, build yourself into a good man. The last thing this world needs is another misogynist prick. Be the man your father accidentally taught you to be, even if it was only because you didn’t have a brother to help you out in the shop.
Make and keep long-term friendships, younger self. You are gonna need them, and they are gonna need you. This is actually one of the most important things you will ever do in your entire life.
Whenever possible, be polite. In the long run, it turns out your good manners will serve you better than even your most righteous rage.
Find a tailor. Find a tailor! Be good to them. Get your pants hemmed properly. (I was meaning to talk to you about that, Jack, if you would – these ones are new. Okay, good, all right.) Get your pants hemmed properly and learn what it feels like to have your clothes really fit your body. People come in all shapes, but clothes do not. This is a wrong that can be easily righted. The world is going to try to squeeze you into so many things that do not fit you, but your clothes need not be one of them.
Seek out a mentor. Listen to what they have to say, and then follow your own path.
Keep a journal, because one day, someone is gonna look up to you and even ask you for advice, and you are gonna wish you had taken better notes.
Thank you. Thank you very much.
(Applause from audience.)