The past few months have really been about rebirth for me. There have been many firsts which hasn’t been easy, and it has been more than I would have expected for someone in their late twenties. But along with these first, I’ve been rediscovering and reclaiming my identity. And along with that, I’ve also been given opportunities to advocate and empower others. From my job as a teacher, to my own inner child work, there have been so many grateful opportunities for queer voices and stories to emerge.
Two wonderful queer Vocal creators and I have been talking a lot about representation and queer pride lately. As queer diverse folx, we have noticed that on Vocal there aren’t as many stories published in the Pride community as we expected. Currently, there are only 1,045 creators who have published in Pride, and only 1,531 stories shared. In Humans there are over 63,000 stories, and in Poets more than double that number! Imagine how many of those poems might be queer? But the creator opted to publish elsewhere because of word count restrictions, or just the fact that people read more from the Poets section. (Not to mention that Top Stories are usually from the Poets community as well)
In further conversation, we ourselves even spoke about how we don’t publish in Pride as often either. Our work tends to file away into other communities more. But why? And where are all the beautiful queer stories?
This is where Queer Vocal Voices comes in.
Jim, River, and myself have agreed on one main thing. We need more queer representation on Vocal, and we want to make it happen. Together, we have created (we believe) the first Vocal group on Facebook geared specifically for queer writers and stories. We’re super excited.
The goal of this group is to elevate and empower queer voices and queer stories with Pride in our identities. We are currently a 2SLGBTQIA+ community group only. We are not open to allies joining at this time in order to prioritize queer voices, but will be in the future.
We want to create a plethora of diverse queer literature, showcase the many facets of queer community and identity. We dream of this group becoming a hive of queer experiences and narratives, and a space where we don’t have to limit ourselves for the heteronormative and/or cisgender society. We want to skyrocket those Pride community numbers and say: we are queer and we are here.
Our stories matter, our queer elders’ stories matter, and our future queer stories matter.
I think about my younger self discovering my identity and the lack of resources out there. But more than that, there was a lack of stories. It’s not just about coming out. Being queer is so much more. It’s about love, and acceptance, and trauma, and navigating spaces. It’s about race, ability, culture, religion. It’s about walking your dog, it’s about cooking with your partner, it’s about advocacy. It’s about solidarity and creating safe spaces. It’s about abuse, shame, and discrimination. It’s about buying a sofa together with your partner, about opening joint bank accounts, about feeling safe in your own skin. It’s about being kinky, it’s about being corny, it’s about platonic love and care. It’s about body image, and mental health, and joy. It’s about knowing you are not alone and that your story matters and is valid.
Our queerness is unique and special and flat out marvelous.
So this is both a call-out and a welcome to all our wonderful queer community here on Vocal Media. We hope you will join us on this empowering journey so that we may uplift each other and celebrate our diversity.
Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!
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Compelling and original writing
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Zero grammar & spelling mistakes
Original narrative & well developed characters