'In this space nothing else exists, we are invisible and filled with our significance. I am an expanse of existence melding into yours, unbound by language or physicality and it makes us free.' - Mel Reeve, 'Shapeshifter'
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Writing Our Space is a collection of personal essays, short stories, poems, and scripts written by members of the LGBTQ+ community across the UK. This collection spans from heartbreak on buses to loving our childhood selves; from tiger print skirts to reflections on a HIV diagnosis. This insight into modern queerness speaks to our love, our grief, and our resilience, as both individuals and a community. To the LGBTQ+ community, from the LGBTQ+ community - in our own words.
Prison. It is a word that conjures up loss, bleakness and despair. A place where those who have broken the law are kept, both for punishment and for the safety of society. But behind these images are human stories, accounts of tragic mistakes and broken lives, woven in-between with hope. For those inside prison, it is hope that often keeps them going: for the future, for those they care for, and for the chance to start afresh upon release.
This collection of 20 pieces by serving prisoners and people on probation explores the under-side of the criminal justice system – the side that does not make it into tabloids or documentaries. We get a chance to see the stories, thoughts and experiences of those condemned by the courts and, in many cases, by society too. Importantly, we learn how many are repentant of the past; how some are in the midst of their own battles for justice, and how all cling onto hope.