The diversity starts with a lineup of author/speakers, including Camille Acker (Training School for Negro Girls), Tommy Orange (There There), Jaime Ford (Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet), Reema Zaman (I Am Yours) and many more whose writing and speaking have illuminated the lives of people of color, the LGBTQ community and beyond.
Storyfort is, however, more than an author parade; and with a slate of podcasting and storytelling events, there's plenty for the literati that extend well past the mere bookish. These include "Why Podcasting Sucks and Why We Still Love It," featuring panelists Frankie Barnhill of Wanna Know Idaho, Lacey Daley of You Know the Place, Nick Quah of Hot Pod and Larry Rosen of The GrottoPod. The panel will talk about maintaining a podcast, sidestepping the pitfalls of the medium and growing an audience.
The panels don't shy away from the eye of the political hurricane either. Swing by for "Border Stories: Modern Immigration," which will pull together immigration lawyers and storytellers for a conversation about the often rocky roads to citizenship and residency. It gets personal with "The Lucky One: A Refugee's Story." Bahati Sudjonga, one of the last refugees to arrive in the United States before President Donald Trump's first travel ban took effect, will hold forth along with representatives of the International Rescue Committee about that moment in history.
There will also be plenty to go around for the LGBTQ crowd. Things will get colorful with the "Drag Queen Story Hour," as drag queens read stories designed for children ages 3-8. For the more mature set, there's "Activating Queer Spaces: A Dialogue," in which artists and activists will engage with the audience on how to interact with queer spaces in Boise and beyond.
Storyfort 2019 will run Wednesday-Sunday, March 20-24, at The Owyhee, with pop-up events at Woodland Empire Alecraft, The Mode Lounge, MING Studios and 10th Street Station. All events are free.