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They were buying adrienne maree brown's "Pleasure Activism", you were buying a smutty zine and some sexy vintage postcards when you made eye contact in front of the QTBIPOC Faves shelf. You cuddled up during a Sapphic Sundays screening... if a hand wandered south in the darkness, who's to say?
Smut Peddlers is Glad Day Bookshop's own wildly successful evening of erotica and sexy writing from diverse young queer, trans and non-binary writers at the world's oldest LGBTQ bookstore, started by Tianna Henry and MJ Lyons in 2019.
With cover art, design and original photographs by MJ Lyons, contributions from Tyler Pennock, Seán Carson Kinsella, Kel Hardy, M.J. Lyons, Taylah, Tianna and edited by the Smut Peddlers and Sapphic Sundays team, all proceeds (minus Gumroad's processing and payout fees) of the ezine will go to Glad Day Lit, the bookshop's non-profit arm that enables our social outreach, advocacy and our annual literary festival, Naked Heart.
Glad Day Bookshop is the first Canadian and the oldest queer bookstore worldwide. Serving the LGBTQ community since 1970, we specialize in offering the widest possible selection of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirit, and queer literature.
Founded and operated by Jearld Moldenhauer until 1991, Glad Day Bookshop has always been at the forefront of gay, lesbian, queer and transgender liberation, for better or worse. In the early years Glad Day was operated out of Moldenhauer’s apartment in The Annex, sharing office space with The Body Politic, a seminal gay liberation newspaper. After making the move to the backyard shed of his Kensington Market home the store finally ended up in the Yonge and Wellesley location in 1981, before he sold the business to John Scythes in 1991.
The store has often been the target of plainclothes officers, police raids and customs officials seeking to detain, destroy or censor “obscene” materials. A raid over Bad Attitude, a lesbian magazine featuring BDSM stories, led to a more than decade long court case that ultimately decided on appeal, “The appellants were convicted of distributing a film that had not been approved by the Board. They appealed, arguing (as they had, unsuccessfully, at trial) that the relevant provisions of the Act and its Regulation were unconstitutional. Held, the appeal should be allowed.” This was a watershed moment for the distribution of sexual material and pornography in Canada.
In 2011, a group of co-owners pooled together money and resources to purchase Glad Day from Scythes, and ultimately moved to the current location at 499 Church Street. Here the store evolved into a multifunctional event space where, in the span of a day, the space can be a bookstore, a café, a restaurant, a bar, a drag brunch destination, a book launch venue, a literary festival headquarters, an activist gathering and mobilizing space, a sapphic movie theatre, a dance club, a cruising spot… and so much more.
2020 marks our 50th anniversary, and we've celebrated by surviving a global pandemic and surviving the cancellation of Pride, our busiest month. But we’ve survived, for now.
All proceeds from Smut Peddlers: Glad Day 50 will go to the Glad Day Bookshop’s non-profit arm, Glad Day Lit, which supports our literary festival, Naked Heart, and our social outreach. For more information, or if you’re able to donate further, please visit: gladdaylit.ca
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