One of my first experiences of Toronto, when I moved here from Edmonton, was The Word On The Street. Back then it was still on Queen Street West and I remember being quite taken with the community spirit of the festival, something that can be rare to find in this city. Masses of people dedicating their Sunday afternoon to be outdoors, experiencing literature. I never imagined then that one day I would have the honour of participating in the festival as an author.
When I arrived at the Great Books Marquee tent I was happy to see the faces of so many friends and strangers. The volunteers and MC were incredibly friendly and had answers for all of my last minute questions.
After the reading, I was moved by several of the audience members who came up to tell me that they had connected with the stories, that they/their children were victims of bullying in high school. These are the conversations that I value most, when the sharing of ones story makes room for others to share their own. I am thankful to Word On The Street for making these conversations possible.
About his book: God Loves Hair is a collection of 20 short stories following a tender, intellectual, and curious child as he navigates complex realms of sexuality, gender, racial politics, religion, and belonging.