“Community has been incredibly important for me, first helping me explore my queer identity as a teenager, then letting me explore my transgender identity as an adult. The online community in particular, with the guidance of forums, YouTube videos, and Facebook groups, has provided me with peace of mind when I haven't felt able to talk to people I know in my day-to-day life. With online LGTBQIA+ communities, you can discuss any problem or confusion and know you’re never alone. There are countless other people out there who know how you're feeling and what you're going through. Even if they don't have specific advice, their solidarity and presence is comforting.”
Harri Aburrow-Newman is a writer, artist, and science geek living on the east coast of Yorkshire, England. They live in a house filled with books, beasts, bright colours, and cacti. They like to hide in their loft and write queer horror novels while looking out at the sea.
"I was lucky enough to have an accepting community already in my early teen years. I came out to my friends as gay when I was fifteen, almost immediately the day after I realized that I was. If it hadn't been for the safe environment I was in, I would never have even considered the possibility that I wasn't a cisgender heterosexual woman. At home, I'd never heard anyone discuss any LGBTQ+ matters, & it was only because my friends were asking these very questions about themselves that I learned being cishet wasn't the default, & that I discovered words that represented me & that I could claim as my own."
Caroline Grand-Clement is a queer seventeen year old, half-time poet, half-time student at an international school in Lyon, France. She dreams of art in all forms, falling stars, & late night conversations. She hopes to make a change in the world one word at a time.
Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Beyond the Shallows, an anthology by L’Éphémère Review, Rose Quartz Journal, Goat's Milk Magazine, Vessel Press, and elsewhere. You can find her on Twitter, Tumblr or Instagram @octopodeshearts.
Joanna C. Valente is a ghost who lives in Brooklyn, New York. Joanna is the author of Sirs & Madams (Aldrich Press, 2014), The Gods Are Dead (Deadly Chaps Press, 2015) Marys of the Sea (The Operating System, 2017), Xenos (Agape Editions, 2016), and Sexting Ghosts (Unknown Press, 2018). They are the editor of A Shadow Map: Writing By Survivors of Sexual Assault (CCM, 2017), and received an MFA in writing at Sarah Lawrence College. Joanna is also the founder of Yes, Poetry, as well as the senior managing editor for Luna Luna Magazine and an editor for Civil Coping Mechanisms.
Joanna has been featured in Brooklyn Magazine, Them, Prelude, BUST, Columbia Journal, Electric Literature, Joyland, Tarpaulin Sky, The Feminist Wire, Spork Press, Ravishly, The Rumpus, VICE, The Brooklyn Rail, VIDA, The Huffington Post, among others. Joanna also currently teaches courses at Brooklyn Poets.
In addition, Joanna has also spoken or given lectures for/at SUNY Purchase College, Sarah Lawrence College, the National Eating Disorder Association, AWP, Brooklyn Book Festival, Shout Your Abortion, Ravishly, Luna Luna Magazine, Monstering Magazine, Winter Tangerine, and more. Joanna can be found on Twitter at @joannasaid.