Event Ideas | Whakaaro hui

During our campaign week, we encourage libraries and schools to host events related to rainbow representation in books. We hope to raise awareness of stories and encourage creative thinking. By running events, you have the opportunity to create safe spaces for rainbow young people and connect more of your young community with rainbow stories and each other.

Below, we’ve outlined a few different ideas for events you can run at your library or school. You know your community best, so make these (or your own amazing idea) work best for your local young people. If you are planning on running an event, we’d love to help spread the word and we’d love to see your photos after the fact.

If we can support you in any way, please email us at outontheshelves@insideout.org.nz.

Rainbow book club

Host a rainbow book club! Invite young people to share thoughts on a rainbow book they recently read. Create the option for a young person to run the event to build a ‘by us, for us’ environment.  

What and why:

  • Creates a safe, welcoming space to find out about books
  • Social, youth-led setting
  • Make books available ahead of time –lowering barriers to participation
  • Ensure that books are available to borrow at the event. Make time for browsing
  • Make it fun – snacks, a bowl full of question prompts to encourage conversation (ie what would the main character eat for breakfast? What would the characters think of our town? What was the best part of this book for you? What song do they listen to on repeat?)

Movie and book event

Host a screening of a rainbow movie based on a book. Have time for students to look through a selection of rainbow books and make borrowing the books easy. If there are multiple copies of the book that inspired the movie in the collection, have those readily available. Provide snacks and time for discussion afterwards

Some film suggestions:

  • Carol (ages 16+ Note: sexual nudity, some minor violence)
    • Based on The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith
  • Fried Green Tomatoes  (ages 13+)
    • Based on Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg
  • Love, Simon (13+)
    • Based on Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli.
  • The Miseducation of Cameron Post (16+ Note: self-harm and violence scenes)
    • Based on The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth

Nationwide Rainbow Book Zine

We will be making a collaborative rainbow book zine. The zine will be downloadable after the campaign week.  

Host a crafty time, get out the art supplies and collage material, and enable young people to create rainbow book-themed A5 pages.  Simply cut A4 paper in half, and let imaginations go wild on that half-sheet of paper. You can also encourage and run book conversations while creating pages.

Some ideas/prompts for pages:

  • my favourite queer books
  • a review of one book
  • something creative about a favourite character
  • rainbow books I wish existed
  • Make up a playlist to go along with the book
  • write fan fiction together (pass the paper style)

After the event, please scan the pages and email them to us at outontheshelves@insideout.org.nz

Stream our live screening with rainbow authors

As part of our campaign week, we will be hosting a YouTube live event (Date: Wednesday, 19 June; 4-5PM ) with two rainbow authors: NZ Trans comic artist Sam Orchard and rainbow author extraordinaire Sassafras Lowrey. Anyone logged into YouTube will have the opportunity to ask our guest authors questions.

Here are some ideas on how to create an in-house event around our YouTube live event:

  • Screen the YouTube live video in a safe space
  • Students can ask authors questions using their devices or from a set up computer in the space
  • Through facilitation, make connections between books and the rainbow people who make them
  • Make time for exploring books in your own space
  • Make it fun: snacks and social conversation afterwards
  • Download our printable poster about the YouTube LIVE event