Guest blogger Charles Dee Mitchell is a freelance writer on the arts and Board Chairman of WordSpace. He blogs at www.potatoweather.blogspot.com.
When I became involved with WordSpace a little over a year ago, I knew it as an organization that had been presenting literary evenings in the Dallas area since 1994. For Spring 2011, we have had over twenty readers at venues including the Kessler Theater, Paperbacks Plus, Dallas Poetry Slams, the Deep Ellum Market, and private homes. This is also the season when we present our most ambitious event to date, and evening of Savage Love Live, with Dan Savage at the Kessler Theater, March 31, at 8:00pm.
Dan seemed a perfect match with WordSpace. Savage Love, his weekly relationship advice column – that could be something of a euphemism – is a staple of the Dallas Observer, and yet he has never made a live appearance in the Metroplex. When WordSpace considered branching out into a higher profile event, we knew we wanted someone who would be entertaining, edgy, and have much to say to an audience both young and old, straight and gay. Dan talks a lot and very explicitly about sex, but his underlying theme is always the responsibilities and challenges of living in a diverse, democratic society.
It Gets Better, Dan’s most recent project, featured recently on NPR’s Fresh Air, was prompted by the number of suicides among gay teenagers and the bullying that preceded theses desperate act. The project started as a YouTube video by Dan and his partner Terry Miller, and has grown a list of 10,000 videos from figures including President Barak Obama, Perez Hilton, and countless individuals worldwide. It Gets Better is now a book, and Dan will be signing copies at the Kessler on Thursday night.
Details on tickets for tomorrow are available here.
Here’s the YouTube video that launched the It Gets Better campaign.