Join us on Thursday, June 9th at 5:30pm for a book soirée celebrating the publication of Taylor Brorby's memoir Boys and Oil: Growing up gay in a fractured land. Presented in partnership with the Upstate SC LGBT+ Chamber—a nonprofit that aims to support and advocate for LGBT+ businesses and professionals across the Upstate—this event will celebrate Taylor's book and also give attendees the opportunity to connect with Chamber members. Refreshments will be available!
$28 tickets purchase entry and a signed copy of the book; reserve your ticket at the link, or show up tomorrow and buy the book when you celebrate!
Doors open and mingling at 5:30pm; reading and signing at 6:00pm.
Renowned writer, educator, and conservationist Terry Tempest Williams calls Brorby's book a "stand up story of beauty and brokenness by a fearless writer." Join us on June 9th to be one of the first to get your hands on this important book!
*Please note that masks will be encouraged at this event, out of kinship with and respect for our author.*
From a young, gay environmentalist, a searing coming-of-age memoir set against the arid landscape of rural North Dakota, where homosexuality “seems akin to a ticking bomb.”
“I am a child of the American West, a landscape so rich and wide that my culture trembles with terror before its power.” So begins Taylor Brorby’s Boys and Oil, a haunting, bracingly honest memoir about growing up gay amidst the harshness of rural North Dakota, “a place where there is no safety in a ravaged landscape of mining and fracking.”
In visceral prose, Brorby recounts his upbringing in the coalfields; his adolescent infatuation with books; and how he felt intrinsically different from other boys. Now an environmentalist, Brorby uses the destruction of large swathes of the West as a metaphor for the terror he experienced as a youth. From an assault outside a bar in an oil boom town to a furtive romance, and from his awakening as an activist to his arrest at the Dakota Access Pipeline, Boys and Oil provides a startling portrait of an America that persists despite well-intentioned legal protections.
Taylor Brorby is the author of Boys and Oil: Growing up gay in a fractured land, Crude: Poems, Coming Alive: Action and Civil Disobedience, and co-editor of Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking in America. His work has been supported by grants and fellowships from the National Book Critics Circle, the MacDowell Colony, the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, Mesa Refuge, Blue Mountain Center, and the North Dakota Humanities Council.
Taylor’s work has appeared in The Huffington Post, Orion Magazine, The Arkansas International, Southern Humanities Review, North Dakota Quarterly, and has appeared in numerous anthologies. He is a contributing editor at North American Review and serves on the editorial boards of Terrain.org and Hub City Press.
Taylor regularly speaks around the country on issues related to extractive economies, queerness, disability, and climate change. He is the Annie Tanner Clark Fellow in Environmental Humanities and Environmental Justice at the Tanner Humanities Center at the University of Utah.
We are LGBT+ professionals and allies who understand that diversity, equality and economic empowerment are vital for any healthy business community. With purpose and out of necessity, we are rewriting the narrative of the queer intersectional experience in the Upstate of South Carolina, to create a stronger, healthier community based on the shared appreciation for the diversity that defines and enhances us all.
Founded as a 501c(6) nonprofit in 2020 amid the challenges of the global pandemic, and with the help of dozens of volunteers, the Upstate LGBT+ Chamber of Commerce is creating a long-absent voice of advocacy for the Upstate LGBT+ business community. We are working to harness our economic potential and give a powerful voice to people who may otherwise feel alienated or “other.” In concert with our allied business professionals who understand that in diversity there is strength, we celebrate this diversity and actively facilitate transformative growth for our members, allies, and queer folks alike.