The Pride List

Book Buys

There are many places in the world where book banning is a regular occurrence even in 2023!! It seems that many people claim free speech as the only entitlement we have as individuals until our ideal doesn’t meet their expectations, and then do everything in their power to take it away! We all know representation is vital for the wellbeing of young people exploring their sexual orientation and gender identity, but also helps all people of any age understand difference, and books or TV are really the only private outlets to do so.

So, we are going to fight this in our very own small way and celebrate those queer writers, queer stories and queer education and give our top picks each month.


That Green Eyed Girl by Julie Owen Moylan

In the dimmed lights of their apartment, Dovie and Gillian love each other in secret. Mixing drinks, dancing to slow jazz, they guard their lives closely, knowing they’ll never truly be safe. And yet, outside, someone suspects the truth. Gillian fears the worst and grips on to Dovie more tightly. But Dovie, seeing the good in people, lets the door open . . .Is this their chance to finally be free? Or are they in even more danger than before?

The dual timeline taken over 20 years apart is masterfully woven and the characters are so well rounded that you can’t help but connect with them. Every trial they contend with, you feel and journey with them. The LGBTQ+ theme throughout still resonates today, even though massive strides have been made, the homophobia, the control over people’s lives is still too relatable and shows how far is still left to go. This book will draw you in, not want to put it down and leaves you aching for the characters once they’re gone.


We Can Do Better Than This by Amelia Abraham

We talk about achieving ‘LGBTQ+ equality’, but around the world, LGBTQ+ people are still suffering discrimination and extreme violence. How do we solve this urgent problem, allowing queer people everywhere the opportunity to thrive?

In We Can Do Better Than This, 35 voices explore this question. Through deeply moving stories and provocative new arguments on safety and visibility, dating and gender, care and community, they present a powerful manifesto for how – together – we can start to create a better future.

Edited by journalist and author Amelia Abraham, with writing from:

Peppermint – Wolfgang Tillmans – Olly Alexander – Jonathan Anderson – Pabllo Vittar – Naoise Dolan – Amrou Al-Kadhi – Shura – Beth Ditto – Owen Jones – Riyadh Khalaf – Tom Rasmussen – Mykki Blanco – Phyll Opoku-Gyimah – Travis Alabanza – Yasmin Benoit – Mazharul Islam – Kate Bornstein – Adam Eli – Shon Faye – Fox Fisher – Hanne Gaby Odiele – Sasha Kazantseva – Andrew Gurza – Holland – Levi Hord – Juliet Jacques – Leticia Opio – madison moore – Matthew Riemer (@LGBT_History) – Vincent Desmond – Juno Roche – Bobbi Salvör Menuez – Carl Siciliano

Family Read

My Shadow is Purple by Scott Stuart

My Dad has a shadow that’s blue as a berry, and my Mum’s is as pink as a blossoming cherry. There are only those choices, a 2 or a 1.

But mine is quite different, it’s both and it’s none. A heart-warming and inspiring book about being true to yourself, by best-selling children’s book creator Scott Stuart. This story considers gender beyond binary in a vibrant spectrum of colour.

Scott is a best-selling children’s book author who is committed to creating content that empowers young kids. His have appeared on numerous best-seller lists, as well as receiving nominations for Children’s Book of the Year & Picture Book of the Year (My Shadow is Pink).

His empowering messages have been seen over 100 million times on social media, and he is a leading voice on fully accepting & empowering our children, exactly as they are. He regularly appears on podcasts and in media, speaking about parenting, discovering your authentic self and learning to accept yourself and your children

You can pick up your copy of this month’s books from your local Book:ish store in Abergavenny or Crickhowell or online here: If these are unavailable at Book:ish, then you can find them online at , the biggest queer bookshop in the UK.


Each month we will share a recommendation from one of us at Abergavenny Pride, be it music, audiobook or a podcast – basically anything that you can use your headphones for.

Bisexual Brunch Podcast by MIM Productions

This month is the Bisexual Brunch Podcast by MIM Productions. A unique podcast for all things Bisexual.

Presented by Nichi Hodgson, Lewis Oakley and Ashley Byrne, Bisexual Brunch takes a regular look at everything going on in the world of Bisexuality and Pansexuality. From sex and statistics to stories and suggestions, listeners will also hear from other Bi and Pansexuals from around the world.

Astonishing Artists

Rachel Wilson

We love all time of art here at Abergavenny Pride, whether it be music, poetry, paintings and everything else in between and I’m sure that’s the same for everyone. There’s always something for every mood and occasion so we are going to sing from the rooftops about queer artists and put them on stage, just for you.

This month we have the incredible and very talented Rachel Wilson.

Brief intro

Hiya, I’m Rachel (they/them), and I’m a queer, disabled producer for screen and stage. I’m passionate about telling stories which use genre, especially comedy, to explore complex social issues. My particular areas if interest include queer stories and mental health. A BAFTA Connect member and BFI Producers Programme alum, my debut screen project ‘Jelly’ won the 2022 Chapter Queer prize, was an Iris Prize Best of British Selection, and has been commissioned for BBC2 Wales & Channel 4. I was also lead producer on the BFI Network funded short ‘The Girl with the Haunted Vagina’, which is currently doing the festival circuit, taking 2nd place with a special commendation at this years Chapter Queer Prize, with some very exciting screenings and festival selections to be announced later on this month.

I’m also in prep for my third short, a Welsh language queer period horror supported by Ffilm Cymru. I was also recently selected as a member of the BBC Comedy Collective 2023 and I’m super excited to take my next steps into working in TV.

How long have you been doing what you do and what’s your favourite part of the process?

I have been producing and stage managing in the theatre space since 2013 and started transitioning into screen in 2019. I still do theatre gigs every now and then but I’m absolutely loving working in screen and am really trying to push for that to become something I do ‘properly’ full time.

I think my favourite part of producing is the variety of the job, from prep, to shoot, to post there’s so many different elements involved, and I really enjoy that. I also love how exact the creative medium is for screen, whilst in theatre you do your best to set everything up and then cross your fingers each night the audience walks away feeling how you want them to. I love that with screen you have the opportunity for multiple takes, multiple angles, space in the edit to really emphasise a particular moment or home in on the vibe you’re trying to get across. I love supporting writers and directors to help their exact visions come to life on screen. And there’s nothing like the feeling when you’re sat in a cinema seeing an audience reacting to your piece. Especially with comedy, hearing a joke be received really well with laughs and claps is such a thrilling feeling!

Who are some of your biggest influences?

Too many to list!! I always say I want to be the UK’s next Shonda Rhimes, the sheer volume and quality of work she has been able to create is a huge inspiration to where I’d dream my career will take me. I watch a lot of US comedy so Greg Daniels and Mike Shur in particular are big influences for me in terms of projects I’d like to make – I love a comedy which has real depth to the characters and relationship-based stories.

In terms of UK talent, Ash Atalla is a big influence, his shows got me hooked on comedy at a very early age and more recently I know he was a driving force in getting Big Boys onto our TV screens and thank goodness he did!

Do you feel there is enough representation of LGBTQIA+ artists in your local scene? If not, how would you like to see things change?

I am loving seeing LGBTQIA+ representation on screen growing in recent years, but obviously I’d still love to see a lot more! Something I’m particularly keen about is seeing queer stories as part of a narrative piece, so narrative fiction featuring queer characters rather than an exploration of queer subject matter if that makes sense?

I am also very keen to create more bisexual content, as a bisexual filmmaker who attends a lot of LGBTQIA+ film festivals, bisexual content is really lacking in film and TV. So, watch this space for some gorgeous bisexual led shorts I have in development at the moment! (Oh – and if you’re looking to fund some funny, heart-warming bisexual stories please do let me know as I have lots to say).

Where can we follow you and listen to your music? And do you have any new releases or upcoming gigs you’d like to share with us?

I always share my film work through our production company’s socials first – we’re Panad Productions.




You can also follow me personally on Twitter –

We’re currently doing the festival circuit for ‘The Girl with the Haunted Vagina’, starring the incredible Sophie Duker. It’s every bit as mad and wonderful as the title would have you think! We’ve got quite a few screenings to announce in the near future so definitely keep an eye on the Panad socials, there’ll be some South Wales screenings announced soon for anyone in Abergavenny looking to come and support too!

Popcorn Picks

Who doesn’t love a cosy night in with a blanket, or a trip to the cinema both filled with the best snacks of your choice and a few hours of escapism from your everyday life? Here we will bring you a selection of worthy watches with queer storylines for whatever are your viewing pleasures.


Feel Good (Netflix)

Mae Martin is one of a few (if not the only?) non-binary, bisexual characters on television. They are a queer Canadian comedian living in England who falls in love with Georgina “George” Lawson, and the series explores bi erasure through a particularly progressive and thoughtful lens.

The show follows the development of George and Mae’s romance in contemporary Manchester. Mae (a version of Mae Martin’s own personal life) meets George (Charlotte Ritchie), a repressed, middle-class English woman, at the comedy club where Mae performs. The pair begin dating, and George learns that Mae is a former drug addict. George encourages them to attend a Narcotics Anonymous meeting, where Mae meets fellow recovering addicts. Mae’s addiction causes problems in their relationship, as does George’s reluctance to come out and tell friends and family about her relationship with Mae.

In the second season, Mae’s career advances, while they address trauma in their past after receiving a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder.


Sex Education

Sex Education is a British teen sex comedy that follows the lives of students, staff and parents of the fictional Moordale Secondary School as they contend with various sexual intimacy dilemmas. Sex Education is often noted for its unique visual language and aesthetics, which takes American teen culture topes and places then into a British setting, inspired by the John Hughes films such as Pretty in Pink and The Breakfast Club.

In the first series, Otis sets up a sex therapy clinic with Maeve to assist with the school’s sexual health problems with business booming but personal relationships not so much. The second series sees new students arrive and the status quo affected. Jean, Otis’ mum, also becomes the school sex therapist because of an outbreak of chlamydia. The third series shows major changes both at home and in school for the rampant teens causing complications for all.

A lot of the filming takes place around Wales as well, with Llandogo, Tintern, Symonds Yat & Monmouth featuring throughout. The school itself is University of South Wales, Caerleon campus and Newport International Sports Village complex is also featured. The 4th and final season is coming to Netflix 21st September.



Cabaret (1972)

Super stylish, super creative and super sexy, this absolute queer classic also takes an open and refreshing approach to bisexuality – essentially it doesn’t make it a big deal at all.

Michael York’s innocent writer in Berlin initially declares himself gay in response to Sally Bowles’ overt passes at him, before starting a relationship with her; only for them to later realise they’ve each been having an affair with the same man. The relationships might be complicated but the film never singles York’s character out as odd – he is simply attracted to men and women.

Cabaret is a 1972 American musical period drama film directed by Bob Fosse and written for the screen by Jay Presson Allen. It stars Liza Minnelli, Michael York, Helmut Griem, Marisa Berenson, Fritz Wepper and Joel Grey. Set in Berlin during the Weimar Republic in 1931, under the presence of the growing Nazi Party, the film is an adaptation of the 1966 Broadway musical Cabaret by Kander and Ebb, which was based on Christopher Isherwood’s semi-autobiographical novel The Berlin Stories (1945) as well as John Van Druten’s 1951 play I Am a Camera, which was itself adapted from Isherwood’s novel. Multiple numbers from the stage score were used for the film, which also featured three other songs by Kander and Ebb, including two written for the adaptation.

Meet The Team Member

Back to Abergavenny Pride now and each month we will introduce you to a member of the team of volunteers that put on this incredible event. We have come up with 10 quick fire questions to help you get to know them a bit better.

Name:              Erin Gaitskell

Pronouns:        She/Her

Identity:           Bisexual Cis Woman

Why did you volunteer for Abergavenny Pride?

I joined Abergavenny Pride, as not only did I want to help create an amazing event for the community and to do outreach to help make a more accepting place to live, but I also wanted to make queer friends, as I only came out later in life and wanted a place where I felt safe and accepted.

What’s the best/worst thing about volunteering for Abergavenny Pride?

The best thing is the friends I have made and getting to come up with new ideas and to be creative, the worst thing is the thought of letting anyone down and not having time to do everything.

What do you do in your spare time?

Lots of things, screenwriting, acting, reading, walking especially up the mountains surrounding Abergavenny, watching films and tv shows, taking care of my kids and spending time with my family, working on my allotment, and DIY, we are currently doing up our house.

Who would you most like to swap places for the day?

Oooooh that’s hard, not sure of a specific person but would love to spend the day in a writers room, writing a hit TV show.

What was the last book you read?

The last book I read and completed was ‘The Kiss Quotient’, but I have many other books on the go like Bi by Julia Shaw and a book about ADHD, I just find it hard to finish books. I do read a lot of fan fiction.

What’s your favourite quote/advice?

My favourite quote is “don’t let anyone make you disappear.” It’s something I say to myself all the time.

What’s your go to song at the moment – past/present?

This depends on my mood, but I love Wolves by Grace Davies, and Never Be The Same Again by Gabrielle Aplin. I do have the Heartstopper Season 2 Playlist on all the time and then a Musical Theatre playlist which me and my kids belt out in the car.

What website do you visit most?

By Archive of Their Own to read fan fiction and then Etsy.

What’s your go to beverage order of choice?

Cocktails. Love a good rum cocktail

Tell us something we don’t know?

I trained as a dancer, I attended the Northern Ballet School at age 16, then travelled the world dancing. I danced with the Osmond Brothers in America.

Copyright © 2024 Abergavenny Pride. All Rights Reserved.