2022 programme: LEGACY

About the 2022 Festival

The very first samesame but different festival in 2016 saw Peter Wells provide a space for LGBTQIA+ writers and readers to come together in a unique way. 2020 was our first festival without Peter, however his legacy continues.

This year’s theme of legacy is a nod to Peter, but also to our broader communities – our own families, and our LGBTQIA+ community – who are sometimes our only family, and those who have fought for us, written for us, or read to us.

The legacy of this festival is both a gift and an inheritance. It is one we don’t take lightly nor too seriously. We want to continue to bring you, the reader and the writers, a festival that celebrates our stories and lives.

Be inspired by new writing and by writing outside the lines, and writing that deals with the hard stuff. Reflect on who we are, who we write for and where we come from. Join us and our wonderful line up of writers. 

This year’s festival has been a collaborative effort, put together by a volunteer board that comprises the following talented and passionate people: Joanne Drayton, Michael Giacon, Hiraani Himona, Lily Holloway, Nathan Joe, Molloy, Sam Orchard and Ian Watt. 

Simie Simpson



Friday Night Gala: Queer Inspiration

Friday, February 18th

7:30 – 9:00pm Online

At this year’s Friday Night Gala our wonderful line-up of writers will discuss the LGBTQI+ writing that has shaped and influenced them. They will continue this legacy by writing about the work that has been important to them as writers.

Flash fiction writer Jack Remiel Cottrell is joined by poet Rebecca Hawkes, writer and curator Tendai Mutambu and poet essa may ranapiri. Chaired by Rhion Munro.

Refreshments will be available before this event, from 7pm


Writing Outside the ‘Lines’: Non-Traditional Writing

Saturday, February 19th

10:30am – 11:30am Online

LGBTQI+ writers have often written in the margins, existing outside of the mainstream. This panel explores that idea and the forms of writing that aren’t always considered ‘literary’, and who gets to decide what is and isn’t ‘literary’.

We have invited renowned comedian Eli Matthewson, rapper and songwriter Randa, activist Shaneel Lal and journalist Murphy to speak to the importance of varied forms of writing, and how their writing moves, shapes, performs, influences and excites. Chaired by the irrepressible Sam Te Kani.

By Ourselves, For Ourselves

Saturday, February 19th

12:00pm – 1:00pm Online

LGBTQI+ is not our only identity, and understanding intersectionality helps us acknowledge how our queer communities have access to varying privilege. Our culture and gender influence how we are treated and perceived by the world.

Join insightful essayist Rose Lu, ‘peddler of horny fiction’ Sam Te Kani, new novelist Rebecca K Reilly and spoken word poet Takunda Muzondiwa for an hour of stimulating discussion. Chaired by award-winning poet Chris Tse.

Honoured Writer: Courtney Sina Meredith

Saturday, February 19th

3:30pm – 4:30pm Online

From award-winning poetry to essays and children’s books, Courtney Sina Meredith has a vast body of work that spans genres, and has even been called ‘genre-bending’.

Her bold, self-assured style of writing has attracted attention across Aotearoa and on the international stage. Courtney’s work delves into issues such as racism, sexism and poverty and draws on her Samoan roots.

In conversation with literary luminary Jeremy Hansen.

Looking back, Looking forward: The legacy of Takatāpui/LGBQTI+ writers

Saturday, February 19th

7:00pm – 8:30pm Online

This Saturday Night Special is a celebration of the new groundbreaking anthology, Out Here: An Anthology of Takatāpui and LGBTQIA+ writers from Aotearoa. This book is a rare milestone, and tonight’s event provides an opportunity for reflection through the words and meditations of our special panelists.

Chair Joanne Drayton leads a discussion on this landmark publication with its editors Chris Tse and Emma Barnes, while some of its contributors, including Michael Giacon, Gina Cole, Pelenakeke Brown and Ruby Solly, will read from their work.

Writing The Hard Stuff

Saturday, February 19th

2:00pm – 3:00pm Online

Writing about our own experiences can sometimes trigger trauma and distress. How do we write about the ‘hard stuff’, and how can this writing help others?

Narrative therapist Tommy Hamilton leads this panel of diverse writers, who explore the vast array of emotions and experiences that make up our lives in their poetry, plays and articles. The panel comprises award-winning theatre director and playwright Shane Bosher, performance poet, actor and writer Dan Goodwin, artist and writer Vanessa Mei Crofsky and poet essa may ranapiri.

The Peter Wells Lecture: Gina Cole

Saturday, February 19th

5:00pm – 6:00pm Online

Gina Cole is of Fijian, Scottish and Welsh descent. She is an Honorary Fellow in Writing at the University of Iowa and she holds a PhD in creative writing from Massey University.

In 2017 she won the Best First Book Award at the Ockham NZ Book Awards for her story collection Black Ice Matter.

Her forthcoming SFF novel titled Na Viro is a work of Pasifika futurism. Gina Cole discusses the legacy of LGBTQI+ writing, the role it has to play in queer liberation and who gets to write the narrative.

Book Launch: Shelter by Douglas Lloyd Jenkins

Saturday, February 19th

6:00pm – 6:45pm Online

Samesame but Different and Bateman Books are pleased to officially launch Shelter, the first novel by writer, broadcaster and former museum director, Douglas Lloyd Jenkins. Please join us in welcoming this new book into the world!

Douglas Lloyd Jenkins is the award-winning author of several books and is well-known to New Zealanders for his television presentations on design and architecture and his columns in magazines such as ‘NZ Home’ and ‘The New Zealand Listener’.


For the Love of Nancy Drew

Sunday, February 20th

11:00am – 12:00pm Online

Melbourne-based New Zealand author R.W.R. McDonald’s award-winning novel The Nancys and the sequel, Nancy Business are fast-paced, clever, funny and heart-warming.

They are the ultimate queer feel-good novels, featuring a sassy heroine and the best gay uncles. This is the ultimate Sunday morning – grab your coffee and snuggle up with your beloved / your cat / your perfectly satisfactory self and listen in!

Sam Orchard and R.W.R. McDonald will discuss all things queer and Nancy Drew.


Poetry Speakeasy

Tuesday, 16 August

6:00pm –8:00pm

Studio One Toi Tū

Hosted in conjunction with Leys Institute Little Library and We Read Auckland.

Join us at Studio One Toi Tū for an evening of LGBTQIA+ poets and poetry, with an open mic plus a reading from very special guest poet, essa may ranapiri. The evening will be hosted by Michael Giacon. Come along to read, listen and enjoy!

Saturday September 17

Our Own Devices: Queer Zine-Making Workshop

Saturday, 17 September

3:00pm –4:30pm

Makerspace @ Central City Library

After being postponed in February, Samesame But Different is so excited to bring you Our Own Devices: Queer Zine-Making Workshop, facilitated by multidisciplinary artist Of Crafts & Curios. The workshop explores the role and legacy of zines as a DIY, alternative publishing method, and the steps of putting together a great zine yourself!

Looking at an overall provocation of queerness in Tāmaki Makaurau, the zine combines original drawings, collage, poetry, letters, stories and other reflections on queer life.

It is available as a free download on the link below.

Fresh Scripts: Play-Reading

Saturday, 17 September

7:00pm –8:30pm

Ellen Melville Centre

What does the future of queer playwriting look like? Join us for this lively play-reading, featuring dynamic new scripts, stories and scenes from three of the hottest emerging playwrights in our community, read by a cast of dazzling performers.

This will be followed by a short conversation between the playwrights. The readings will include excerpts from plays by award-winning theatre-maker and performance poet Nathan Joe (he/him); producer, performer, poet and director Joni Nelson (they/them); and performance poet, actor and writer Dan Goodwin (they/them). Directed by Keagan Carr Fransch.

FRIday September 23

Samesame But Different: Te Whanganui-a-Tara Edition

Friday, 23 September

6:00pm –8:30pm

National Library of New Zealand

While Te Whanganui-a-Tara is known as a political hub, it’s also garnered an unofficial title as the poetry capital of Aotearoa. Rightly so, we think. The city is teeming with talent, wide-ranging and innovative, bold and self-knowing.

Following the disruption the pandemic caused to many recent releases, we wanted to create a space to celebrate these poets, and to hear more about their work. So – we’re coming to town.

Join us at the National Library as we hear from a panel of exceptional poets – Cadence Chung, Ruby Solly, Chris Tse, and Oscar Upperton – poised right at the heart of where we are in our literary history, and where we’re going. Chaired by the brilliant Emily Writes.