Welcome, dear reader, to the October/November edition of GCN, which will provide you with some top reading content and also act as a perfect example of the maxim ‘the only constant in life is change’!
With that in mind, we’re delighted to welcome our amazing new Managing Editor, Michael Brett, who’ll be leading the team into our next chapter. GCN is brimming over with plans to further educate, connect and entertain our beloved community under Michaels’ leadership. Exciting times lie in store! We’re also proud to have the incredible Nicole Lee as our Online Content Creator, so expect to read some fabulous stories on GCN.ie in the months ahead.
Now that we’ve shared our team news, what has this issue of the magazine got in store for you? Lots, is the answer! There’s a simply wonderful interview with the deserves-to-be-iconic Irish activist Michael Barron who has devoted his life to making the country, and now the world, better for the queer community, and in particular queer youth. That’s Michael himself gracing the cover of yours truly in a gorgeous portrait by the super-talented Hazel Coonagh.
In a special preview of an exciting video series GCN will premiere in the weeks ahead, a multitude of LGBTQ+ people share their stories as part of the What It’s Like To Be project. We’re very proud to platform their voices and hope the series leads to more essential conversations that need to be had.
On the culture side of things, comedian, actor and writer, Billy Eichner, talks about his hilarious new film Bros - a milestone for queer cinema, being, surprisingly, the first big studio gay rom-com to hit our cinema screens. The glorious artist collective Adrian+Shane talk about their own creative journey and hint at what to expect from their new exhibition 17 Ways to a Better You, and the Outburst Festival in Belfast give us a sneak peek of what’s in store for lucky attendees seeking the best in queer entertainment.
There’s an eye-opening and engrossing interview with a lesbian couple who share their experiences with BDSM and how it has made their relationship blossom, while in the latest of our series looking back at iconic queer nightspots that provided nights out and safe spaces for LGBTQ+ people across the country, we learn more about Loafers in Cork.
We’re very proud to platform some flat-out fantastic personal essays from various members of our community, including the experiences of a lesbian woman who went through the inhumane Direct Provision system, there’s a poignant and ultimately hopeful story from a writer who discusses the gruelling experience she and her partner went through when going down the route of fertility treatment, and there’s an excellent and much-needed discussion about the fluidity of identity and the pressure to assign yourself a label.
Just in time for Halloween, you can enjoy a colourful piece looking at queer holidaymakers visiting America for the spooky season at a time when LGBTQ+ rights are being rolled back across the USA.
And last, but not in any way least, prepare yourself for a touching look at the Irish Names Quilt in an article which also acts as a love-letter to the very much-missed Mary Shannon, its custodian and a true Irish legend.
As we bring this team letter to a close, we also want to take a moment to say goodbye to a beloved member of the GCN family. Our magazine editor Peter Dunne is moving on to new pastures, with this being his last issue. Peter says a little goodbye at the end of this magazine, so we won’t get out the tissues to wipe away our tears just yet. Take care, Pete, you’ll be missed.
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