We were delighted to be involved in helping launch New Writing South’s brand-new LGBTQ+ online book group in March 2021. The Hear Us Out Book Group was part of New Writing South’s Hear Us Out project, an online programme celebrating older LGBTQ+ people’s real-life stories. The group was created so that LGBTQ+ members of the community could meet up, connect with others and find peer support, through a shared love of reading.
The aim of the book group was to continue Hear Us Out’s legacy, by providing a space where LGBTQ+ people could make new friends and connections, by discussing LGBTQ+ literature and stories.We delivered three events via Zoom between March – May 2021, and the book group has continued as a peer led reading group.
Lesley Wood – Director of New Writing South commented: “The Hear Us Out Book Group will NOT be like your average book group. Our friends at Collected Works will take all the hit-and-miss out of it as they curate some of the best, brightest new LGBTQ+ fiction for us to read and discuss. They will be inspiring, sometimes surprising, and always beautifully written books, to nurture tired souls and get us through the last of these lost lockdown months. Readers of all ages are warmly invited to join these companionable, uplifting sessions.”
Sarah Hutchings – Director, Collected Works CIC added: “Initially, for the first few months, the book group will be run and hosted by Collected Works CIC, in partnership with New Writing South, with the hope that it will eventually become a peer-led group, where members choose the books each month. We will be there at the beginning to get the group going, provide support and encourage members to join.”