Perhaps you want to send something in for the Ocean of Possibilities Bi+ Visibility Day Zine, but you’re not sure where to start.
These prompts, which expand on our jellyfish theme, might be helpful.
If you’re having trouble getting started, I would suggest reading through these questions and prompts and picking the one that brings a thought to mind most easily. Then set a timer for 15 minutes and write. Try not to edit yourself as you go, just let the words flow! You can edit afterwards.
If you love what you’ve written, awesome! Keep going on that track.
If you don’t love it, that’s okay! Pick another question or prompt, or take another crack at the one that first drew your attention.
(Keep in mind that you do not need to stick to a jellyfish or ocean theme – this was just a fun theme I went with this year. The zine will include all kinds of writing and themes.)
Send your submissions in by midnight, September 13, 2020.
Jellies have been around since before the dinosaurs, and our communities have also always been around.
- What community do you identify as belonging to, or being part of?
- Do you know the history of that community?
- When did you first learn that there was a community that shared your bisexual, pansexual, asexual, or otherwise non-monosexual orientation?
- What experiences have you had in these communities?
- Have you felt welcome in queer communities, either communities of shared orientation or other queer communities? What has contributed or stood in the way of feeling welcome in these communities?
- Write a story about a bi+ person in history. (This could be in any genre.)
Jellies are found in every ocean, and in every part of the ocean, and our communities are also found everywhere.
- Our bi+ communities overlap with trans communities, fat communities, Black, Brown and Indigenous communities, disabled communities, poor communities, substance using communities, sex working communities, and every other community. What overlaps exist in your bi+ experience?
- Are there places you didn’t expect to find bi+ community, but then they were there?
- Write a story about a bi+ person in an unexpected location, such as the moon, the bottom of the ocean, or a space station. (This could be in any genre, but my love of speculative fiction is certainly present in this prompt!)
Jellies can be hard to see because they blend in, and our communities can be hard to see, too.
- Have you experienced a sense of invisibility, or erasure when it comes to your bi+ identity? What was the effect of this?
- Have you experienced being seen in your bi+ identity? What did that visibility make possible?
- What do you wish people knew about bi+ experience, that tends to get lost when we are blended into our contexts (such as the discourses that flatten us down to “spicy straight” or “gay/lesbian lite”)?
- Where would you like to see more bi+ representation?
- Write a story about blending in. (This could be in any genre.)
- Write a story about not blending in. (This could also be in any genre!)
Jellies are resilient and they survive in so many different contexts, and our communities are also resilient, and survive in many different contexts.
- What skills of survival have you learned as a bi+ person, and in bi+ communities?
- What are some of the obstacles that you have faced?
- What are some of the skills of resilience that you have developed as a bi+ person, and in bi+ communities?
- What is the history of your skills of resilience and survival – where did you learn them, and who supports you in them?
- Write about your “care toolkit” – the skills and resources you use to care for yourself and others.
- Write a story about bi+ survival. (This could be in any genre.)
Some jellies are bioluminscent, creating their own light, and so do our communities – bi+ communities have been creating queer-inclusive spaces for generations, including Brenda Howard and the first Pride March!
- Has there been a time when you’ve “created your own light” for yourself or others – a time when you have held out against the gloom, or when you have offered hope to someone else?
- Has there been a time when another member of a bi+ community offered light and hope to you?
- Who in your life, now or in the future or in the past, would you want to create light and hope for?
- Who in your life knows that you are holding onto hope or possibility?
- What allows you to be bioluminescent?
- Write a story about being a light in the gloom. (This could be in any genre.)
- Write a story about finding a light in the gloom. (This could be in any genre.)
And if the idea of finding light in the gloom appeals to you, you can use code ‘jellyfish’ from now until the end of September 2020 for 23% off An Unexpected Light, in celebration of Bi+ Visibility Day on September 23, 2020.
The zine is only the first of the Bi+ Visibility Week events!
There is also a virtual video dance party on Friday Sept 18 from 8-10 pm MDT (please RSVP for details – we’re still figuring out exactly how it will work but it’s going to be super fun). RSVP at the FB event – https://www.facebook.com/events/313322403260174 or send me a message.
And a panel on visibility and care on Saturday Sept 19 from 1-2:30 pm MDT. Watch for a blog post coming this weekend with full details.
And lastly, a virtual paint night on Bi+ Visibility Day, Wednesday Sept 23 from 6-8 pm MDT. Anyone can participate, and for folks in Calgary, I’m putting together craft packs with a canvas board, paint brushes, and paint. You can find details and RSVP in the FB event – https://www.facebook.com/events/1175049712880550.