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Thursday 10 November 2016

Queering the Auckland Writer's Festival

Posted in: Entertainment
By Daily News staff - 19th April 2016

The Auckland Writers Festival is back for another year, we take a look at three LGBTI writers to check out this year.

Marlon James

Winner of the prestigious Man Booker Prize for his novel A Brief History of Seven Killings, Marlon James is a Jamaican born writer that celebrates traditional storytelling.

James currently teaches literature in Minnesota and has authored two other novels; John Crow’s Devil and The Book of Night Women.

He came out publicly last year in the The New York Times when he was commissioned to write a piece that was a voyage to himself.

Recently, James revealed he underwent exorcism as part of a therapy pushed by the “ex-gay” religious movement in Jamaica.

Hear him speak on Saturday 14 May and on Sunday 15 May at one of three events for the festival.

Jeanette Winterson

An award-winning adult and children’s writer, Jeanette most recently wrote The Gap of Time, a cover-version of Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale, a story of revenge, jealousy, male rage, and the power of women.

Winterson became famous with the release of her first book Oranges are not the Only Fruit, in 1985 and is now a Professor of New Writing at The University of Manchester.

Many of Winterson’s novels explore gender polarities and sexual identity and she came out as a lesbian at the age of sixteen.

Hear her speak on Thursday 12 May, Saturday 14 May and Sunday 15 May as part of the festival.

John Boyne

Irish writer John Boyne is perhaps best known for his 2006 novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas.

During the festival Boyne will be talking to Guy Somerset about the ways in which fiction can illuminate the narrative of history. With the first event sold out, a second session has been scheduled but be in quick to avoid disappointment!

Boyne, who grew up in Catholic Ireland, told The Guardian in 2014 “It’s not easy to be a young, gay teenager and to be told that you’re sick, mentally disordered or in need of electroshock therapy, particularly when you hear it from someone who groped you on your way to class the day before.”

Boyne is speaking on by Friday 13 May and Saturday 14 May.

Check out the Auckland Writers Festival website for more details. Daily News staff - 19th April 2016

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