Poet Erin Cotton gets animated during a previous Pride in the Word literary showcase event at the Vic Theatre. Photo by Peter B. Jakab/victoriapridesociety.org

PRIDE WEEK: Pride in the Word a celebration of literature

Award-winning lineup of authors, poets to read at Ambrosia Conference Centre

For many decades, poets and writers were among the lone voices speaking out about what it was like to live as an LGBTQ person in a predominately straight society.

In Victoria and elsewhere, times have changed and there is far more acceptance and understanding of LGBTQ communities as part of the greater makeup of society. And the writers and poets continue to voice their thoughts on the topic, perhaps more eloquently and openly than ever.

During Victoria Pride Week, that work is in the spotlight at the annual Pride in the Word event, held this year on July 7 at the Ambrosia Conference Centre. This showcase of some of the proudest and most talented writers from Victoria and across the country is billed as one of Canada’s largest Pride festival literary events.

The evening’s host, author and poet Billeh Nickerson, remembers doing a Pride coffee house more than 20 years ago in the city. Along with Pride in the Word co-founder David Tillson, he has overseen its evolution into a more high-profile celebration of literature.

“It’s my favourite event of the year,” says Nickerson, who will also do a reading. “There’s such a wonderful energy in the crowd and it’s such a supportive space.”

The list of accomplished writers and poets who will read also includes Governor General’s Literary Award poetry winner Arleen Pare and GG nominee Anne Fleming; past winners of the Writer’s Trust of Canada’s Dayne Ogilvie Prize for emerging LGBTQ writers, Kai Cheng Thom (2017) and Amber Dawn (2012), and Monique Gray Smith, winner of the 2014 Burt Award for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Literature.

The all-ages event routinely draws upwards of 200 people, Nickerson says.

“You don’t have to be queer or trans to enjoy this event; anywhere you are on the sexuality spectrum.”

Tickets are $13, doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the event starting at 7. The Centre is at 638 Fisgard St.

Just Posted

REVIEW: Journey enjoyable, destination elusive with Griffin and Sabine

Monday reviewer Sheila Martindale offers up her take on latest Belfry Theatre production

Victoria Symphony, other Royal Theatre users hammered with huge rent increases

Symphony already planning to move half its concerts to UVic’s Farquhar Auditorium

Glittering, Olympic medal-winning lineup coming for Stars on Ice

Tickets go on sale this Friday for Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre show May 14

Artwork, storytelling fuels romance at the Belfry

Adaptation of Griffin and Sabine books hits the stage in Fernwood on Dec. 4

Magic of Christmas lightup night tonight at the Gardens

Butchart’s unveiling their annual Twelve Days of Christmas displays and festive activities

Kendrick Lamar leads Grammy noms, where women make a comeback

A list of nominees in the top categories at the 2019 Grammys, including Kendrick Lamar, who is the leader with eight nominations, were announced Friday.

Dick Cheney biopic ‘Vice’ tops Golden Globes nominations

“Vice” topped all contenders Thursday, in nominations announced at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, including best picture, comedy and best actor nominations for Christian Bale.

Actor-comedian Kevin Hart will host 2019 Oscars

Hart will host the 2019 Academy Awards, fulfilling a lifelong dream for the actor-comedian.

Margaret Atwood to write sequel to ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’

Publisher McClelland and Stewart says it will publish ‘The Testaments’ on Sept. 10, 2019

Rat Pack revisited with Christmastime show at McPherson

The music and mirth of Frank, Sammy and Dean in the spotlight Dec. 20

Behind Bars: Steppin’ out at Veneto

Brant Porter orchestrates the cocktail menu at popular Victoria beverage stop

CHRISTMASTIME FILM: Classics revisited at Cincenta, The Vic

Monday columnist Kathy Kay touches on some holiday film options at the theatre

Most Read