The Reading Queer Fun(d)raiser was a big success. Our goal, which we doubled, was to raise funds to support the Reading Queer mission “to transform the lives of the queer community through the act & the art of creative writing.” Funds raised will be used to program the Reading Queer Literary Festival in June 2014, the Queer Depot Literary Salons and, most importantly, to hire teachers to lead creative writing workshops for the community. The evening concluded with Carla Silva winning a signed, numbered and framed print of Spring Never Falls donated by JeanPaul Mallozzi.
We would like to thank everyone who donated their time, resources and energy to Reading Queer. Special thanks to Lillian de la Flor (from Dolly’s Florist) and Fauzhy Jouseph Silba for organizing the event, as well as providing food, beverages and decorations; the entire RQ Advisory Board, which includes Omar Figueras, Paula Kolek, Jenni Person, Maureen Seaton, Tim Wagoner and Julie Marie Wade; Karloz from PartyKarloz for providing exquisite cocktails throughout the evening; Damara Dee Martin, Roy Guzman, Jenni Person and Meredith Camel for reading excerpts of their poetry; and to Octavio Campos, Pioneer Winter and Priscilla Marrero for their wildly quirky performance of Campos’ performance action piece “Dammit Versace.”
Finally, a huge thank you to Reading Queer Program Director Jose A. Villar-Portela for speaking openly and honestly about his queer experience growing up in Cuba where he was bullied by society simply for being Jose A. Villar-Portela. Through literature, Villar-Portela found refuge and solace from bullying. His words crystalized for the audience the imporant role Reading Queer will play in fostering and providing queer voices a platform for self-exploration and self-expression.
Link to images from the fun(d)raiser here. To support our mission to transform the lives of the queer community through the act & the art of creative writing, visit our support page here: http://readingqueer.org/support/.