Dear Queer: Letters in Solidarity with LGBTIQ+ Youth
Broadsided stands in solidarity with the LGBTIQ+ community and all those who call them/us family. Who call them/us loved.
This is a moment of unprecedented attacks against the rights of trans youth and their families and ongoing violence, both legal and extralegal, against all LGBTQIA+ people. Recent legislation in Florida regarding school curricula (for example, the “Don’t Say Gay” bill) and restricting or even criminalizing healthcare for trans youths in Texas, Arizona, Alabama, Idaho and more (See the ACLU’s web page for details).
Some of us have lived through, survived, and even might be thriving despite challenges we faced coming out as LGBTIQ+ 30, 20, 10, or 5 years ago. We know some of the speed bumps we hit. Someone unexpected reached out a hand when we didn’t even realize we needed it. We know what we might have done differently. Some of us have parented, sistered, taught, friended, or cousined dear ones who have come out.
Here, we invite writers to share short work that reaches out toward any–past or present, self or other–who have needed support, solace, or a sense of being seen and known. We seek writing from voices who might wish to speak to their own younger selves (and, by extension, the younger selves of today).
Send poems or flash prose with the title, “Letter to my ______”
The blank could be anything relevant: younger self, former self, future family, unexpected ally, nemesis, dream self, fantasy self, unfurling self, beautiful kid, surprising elder, inner unicorn.
We seek work that offers hope, solace, pathways, and a sense of solidarity. Rage is fine; there’s plenty to rage against, but what can we build with a fire? After a fire? The goal is to offer solidarity, strength, and hope to LGBTIQ+ youth and those who love them. Surprising, nuanced, visionary, radical, thrilling, funny, wrenching hope.
We seek SHORT work: Prose of under 300 words, poems of 30 lines or less.
Dates & Guidelines
Deadline for Submissions: July 4, 2022
Submit via Submittable: While we ask for a $3 entry fee, which goes wholly toward keeping Broadsided (an all-volunteer operation) running, we would like to make sure as many people as possible can be invited to share their voices. We are making the submission fee for this special feature voluntary. If you can afford to support this work, thank you.
Further guidelines are on the Submittable page.
Once we’ve selected a folio of writing to publish, we’ll reach out to our team of artists to see how they, in turn, would like to respond. It’s our hope to release the broadsides on September 1, 2022 – buoying students returning to school in the fall and the teachers who seek to support them.