How is queer representation in literature changing? In today’s social and political climate, how do writers construct and define queer characters, knowing there are real-world ramifications? Do they consider economics, race, class, geography or history? Are we seeing the erosion of queer, as queer characters begin to inhabit more mainstream texts? Benjamin Law hosts a conversation with prominent writers Ivan Coyote (Tomboy Survival Guide), C.S. Pacat (Captive Prince trilogy) and Peter Polites (Down the Hume).

Supported by Macquarie University.  

Curated by Peter Polites.

Peter Polites (Australian)

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Peter Polites is a Western Sydney-based writer. In 2014 he wrote and appeared in the Sweatshop performance writing production Three Jerks. In 2015 he was a recipient of the WestWords writing fellowship. He wrote Steps into Katouna, a performance text for Urban Theatre Projects that was put on for Sydney Festival 2017. Down the Hume is his first novel: it is part noir, part melodrama, part queer and all Western Sydney.

C.S. Pacat (Australian)

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C.S. Pacat is the author of the best-selling Captive Prince trilogy. Her first series began its life as an original-fiction web serial, which attracted viral attention before being acquired by Penguin USA. The Captive Prince trilogy went on to become a USA Today bestseller after being published to commercial success and critical acclaim.

Ivan Coyote (International)

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Ivan Coyote is the award-winning author of eleven books, the creator of four short films, and has released three albums that combine storytelling with music. Ivan is a seasoned stage performer and long-time road dog, and over the last two decades has become an audience favourite at storytelling, writers, film, poetry, and folk music festivals from Anchorage to Amsterdam to Australia.

Ivan often grapples with the complex and intensely personal issues of gender identity in their work, as well as topics such as family, class, social justice and queer liberation, but always with a generous heart, a quick wit, and the nuanced and finely-honed timing of a gifted raconteur. Ivan’s eleventh book is Tomboy Survival Guide and recently was awarded a Stonewall Honor Book Award by the American Library Association, and was long-listed for the BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction.

Benjamin Law (Australian)

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Benjamin Law is a journalist, columnist, TV screenwriter and author of two books – The Family Law (2010) and Gaysia: Adventures in the Queer East (2012). Both were nominated for Australian Book Industry Awards. The Family Law is now an AACTA-nominated TV series for SBS.