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“Our cry, our roar, our prayer, our lament”: peculiar journal launches its 5th issue

“No one can tell you what you are worth; that is for you to decide. So we hope you’ll decide to be brave. To be strong. To be beautiful.” These words from the home webpage of peculiar literary journal capture the aspirations of the team that directs and curates this unique and original literary voice based in Utah County.

The peculiar staff presents an opportunity this week to hear from writers and artists who champion creation and individuality at the release party for the journal’s fifth printed issue. The anticipated release of this latest issue of prose and poetry authored by Utah-affiliated queer writers will be celebrated at Pioneer Book, 450 W. Center Street in Provo, and is scheduled for Tuesday, April 17th, at 6:30 PM. The event is open to the public and will be immediately followed by a poetry open mic, which will conclude the evening. Copies of the journal will be available for purchase for $12, cash or credit.

Aaron Gates, the journal’s co-editor-in-chief hopes to see the event well-attended. “Our release parties are a great chance for readers to come out and support queer authors and artists in person. The queer arts community is powerful here in Utah. Plus, hearing a writer perform their work adds layers and layers of emotion and meaning you might usually miss when just reading something on a page.”

Tuesday’s release party will begin with readings by the issue’s Featured Writer, Jayce Grimshaw, followed by published poets Bonnie Shiffler-Olsen, R. Madison Haymore, and Sophie Blair. Other writers appearing in issue five include Jake Francis, Marco Anderson, Greg Bayles, Keith Turner, Alithia Zamantakis, Brianna Cluck, Daniel Cureton, Jordan Winter, Hannah Slind, and Dain Broadbent.

 peculiar was founded to provide a unique platform for the prose, poetry, art, and photography of Utah’s LGBTQ+ writers and artists, and derives its name from “a peculiar people,” a nod to Utah’s LDS pioneer heritage. Co-editor-in-chief Jack Garcia says of the journal, “This collection of writings is our cry, our roar, our prayer, our lament, and the gnashing of our teeth.”

Aaron reflects the purpose of the journal by adding, “Hope can be creation … As you read this issue, see what now exists that once didn’t until these creators gave it life. These queer voices are the voices of creation, of rebellion, of hope….”

Visit peculiarjournal.com for more information.


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