Some of the most inspiring British LGBTQIA+ authors on Twitter are taking part in #ReadTheRainbow, a one day literary event hosted across the platform to support LGBTQIA+ allyship.
Kicking off at 1pm on Wednesday 26th August, the line-up includes author and screenwriter Juno Dawson, writer and columnist Justin Myers, creator of #ThisIsWhatAsexualLooksLike Yasmin Benoit & writer, performer and filmmaker Amrou Al-Kadhi.
The authors involved represent voices from across the LBGTQIA community and literary landscape , all with the common goal of celebrating allyship both within the community and from outside.
During June this year, Twitter saw a 70% growth in terms relating to allyship vs June 2019. As well as this, Twitter data points to a 25% increase in conversation around reading during lockdown. Building on these trends, #ReadTheRainbow aims to honour LGBTQIA+ voices on Twitter and celebrate the power of representation in literature.
Each author will host a 15-minute live stream, including a reading from one of their published pieces of work, plus an exclusive chat with their Twitter followers afterwards.
The stellar line-up includes readings from Juno Dawson’s Wonderland, Justin Myers’s The Magnificent Sons and Amrou Al-Kadhi’s Unicorn: The Memoir of a Muslim Drag Queen.
Here is the line up in full (all times are BST):
Juno Dawson said: “For most people, these stories about LGBTQIA+ hardship are just that, stories. But for my community and I, this has been our everyday lived experience.
“This is why the overwhelming surge of allyship on Twitter has been so heart-warming and why I couldn’t be happier to be a part of #ReadTheRainbow.
“Not only to inspire allyship towards my amazing community but to also ensure that future LGBTQIA+ generations never experience anything but whole-hearted acceptance, compassion and equality. #ReadTheRainbow is another opportunity to celebrate an active, vibrant, diverse and wonderful community – both on Twitter and in real life.”
Twitter Senior Partnerships Manager and LGBTQIA+ activist Alice Beverton-Palmer said: “The pandemic made it hard to celebrate Pride in person, but it has also given us the opportunity to step back and look at what Pride is all about, and the experiences of the most marginalised in our community.
“With an encouraging rise in #allyship Tweets since lockdown, supporting people sharing their stories, we wanted to celebrate LGBTQIA+voices on Twitter and the power of representation in literature. We hope to make a long-lasting change, and we’re excited to be partnering with such an amazing roster of British LGBTQIA+ authors to launch #ReadTheRainbow.”