Queer Community Celebrated in New Book

23 November 2023
Time to read
2 min read

A new anthology of writing nurtured in Suffolk is celebrating 45 years of the iconic Pride rainbow flag.

The book Suffolk Pride: We are the One In Five is composed of short prose, poetry and non-fiction writing from students and alumni of the University of Suffolk and is published under the Suffolk Queer Voices banner.

The book was launched at a special event at the university’s Waterfront building this week.

Student Charlie Brodie who graduated this year with an MA in Creative and Critical Writing edited the book and said focussing on the university has been really important.

“The book emphasises the importance of queer voices in rural settings, as well as the need for queer visibility.”

He added: “I felt completely overwhelmed by seeing the book for the first time, after such a long wait and It hasn't completely hit me yet, but it all feels so surreal to see a project that I began 7 months ago in the flesh. 

“This book is incredibly important because it's showing people, LGBTQ+ and non-LGBTQ+ that there are queer people here in these rural settings.

“Representation is such an important and integral part of life, some don't even notice it but when you are queer and consuming media, you begin to notice that not many books or films represent your identity.

“I wanted this project to show various different identities and for people to pick it up, read it and see themselves here and if you are non-LGBTQ+ it's a positive way to educate them.”

Each colour of the Pride rainbow flag is represented in the book looking at subjects including nature, healing, sunlight, sex and serenity. 

Ellen Freeman who is in her final year of her MA in Creative and Critical Writing at the university said having her work included in the anthology was “incredibly special”.

“Having my work included in this book was incredibly special, as I have been able to see the project progress from the first glimpse of an idea, all the way through to the launch.

“I feel truly lucky to have my work published alongside such talented and wonderful writers.”

She added: “I think it really showcases the wide variety of experiences within the community but one thing I personally wanted to demonstrate was the sweet, romantic side of a relationship.

“I don't write a lot of contemporary fiction, or romance, so that was a fun experience.

“I know some of the writers have written more from their own experience than I did, but I also think it's brilliant in that each story and poem is entirely unique and demonstrates a different part of the experience.” 

Kate Burgess, the University of Suffolk’s Alumni Relations and Development Manager said: “This project, which was funded through the University of Suffolk annual fund, provided an opportunity for current students and alumni to come together a collaborate on a very special anthology.”

“The annual fund is supported by generous donations from our supporters, staff and alumni and supports projects which enhance the student experience.”

For press enquiries, please contact: press@uos.ac.uk