lgbtq

Unboxing STILL STACE.

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WHOAAAAAAAAA.

I’ve been waiting a LONG time for this day. To open the author copies of MY FREAKING OWN BOOK. That I wrote and drew and how is this real.

It’s a box of literal dreams that I unpacked and my heart is a-BLAZING. Tams and I waited til the kids were in bed, and then did a cheesy photo shoot because I’m gonna SAVOUR every MOMENT of this magical journey I find myself on.

I brought out the original scribbly and beat up hard copy I made two years ago, (originally titled “Dear Younger (Gay) Me”) held together with clips. Also my kids coloured all over it (bonus). This Version 2.0 is WAY. BETTER. Kudos to Beaming Books for putting out such a beautiful and quality book. They have been such an amazing team to work with, especially my editor Naomi.

I may or may not (MAY) carry around a copy of my own book everywhere I go like it’s my third child CUZ IT KINDA IS. Get ready world, it’s comin’ at ya in less than two weeks. Send me your copy if ya get one!

My queer preaching.

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Sometimes I can’t believe the things I get to do. Today was one of those days.

I’ve been working with my friends at The Bridge Church in Abbotsford, BC for a few months as they moved toward becoming an officially affirming church. They invited me to be the guest speaker for this service, and it was a truly moving time. They have posted the video online, which is posted below. I also linked my text from my (queer) “sermon” below that.

Sheesh, I never thought I’d be an artist that sometimes does queer preaching BUT I AM HERE FOR IT!

Oct 3, 2021 – Because of Love from The Bridge, Abbotsford on Vimeo.

At the end of the service, I shared a Blessing that I had written for this community on this special day. Thanks to the team at The Bridge for putting it into beautiful graphics!

Read my full manuscript here: “Because of love, a service of welcome and affirmation.”

Love for “Still Stace”.

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Six weeks from this Tuesday, Still Stace will be out into the world.

It feels like a dream slowly coming true. (It IS!) I’ve been working quietly in my office for what feels like a LONG time, and now it’s slowly getting into people’s hands. WHOA. I’m trying to savour each exciting thing that happens – like these amazing endorsements, and even a Kirkus review! Excuse me while I dance out my excitement in my office by myself. 😀 I am SO grateful.

MsFits Podcast

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I had a really great time, thanks to my friends at The MsFits podcast, for this awesome conversation! I really value the space to talk about this journey with others who are alongside me. If you want to hear about faith and being gay, and how that fits together, have a listen! Also available on other platforms wherever you listen to your podcasts!

From the podcast summary: Did you tune into this week’s new episode with @chomiaks? We were so lucky to have her on the show with us, to have her share her own journey of fully accepting herself, and how that has shaped her own faith journey and even the art she produces for work!@chomiaks will be releasing her book “Still Stace” this October, so stay on the lookout! We hope you enjoy this touching episode. New episodes every Wednesday 5 AM PDT/8 AM PDT.

Rainbow flags at church.

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Something big happened recently.

And the fact that it fell on my birthday, was just one of those moments I felt God smile on my life – so I smiled back.

July 25 was our first in-person church service at Open Door Church since Covid, and that was (CUE TEARS) emotional enough.

It was also a faith milestone for me.

Our pastor Bradley asked me to be the one to hang the rainbow flag on our building, as part of our becoming an official affirming church. (😭❤️🌈🙏)

I wasn’t prepared for the feelings that flooded my body as I (unsteadily) climbed the ladder(s) to hang this flag. All my years of feeling rejected from church and knowing that I would never truly be welcome.

Wow. What this means to me. To my faith. To my family. To my LGBTQ Christian community.

What this means especially to those who gave up hope desperately wanting to see this beacon in their night.

I want to sit with this.

I want to let it slowly sink to the bottom of my soul like a heavy rock laden with gratefulness.

I want the dust that it kicks up to be my continual reminder that good change is alive and well.

Never give up, my friends. You are SO loved.

Still Stace BOOK LAUNCH!

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Hollllly hanna montanaaaaaaa am I ever excited to post about this!

Friday, Oct 22nd!

Fort Langley, BC!

IN PERSON!

(Following all current safety guidelines, of course – see bottom of this post.)

OneTWU has organized this launch, and independent bookstore Wendel’s in Fort Langley is the book sponsor. Purchase a ticket here, and then either bring your pre-ordered copy of STILL STACE for me to sign OR buy a copy at the launch, and I will sign it up for ya. I will be sharpening my Sharpies–wait…. I’ll be ready! We are planning some fun giveaways too!

Please share this far and wide, buy a ticket, and please come! (Here is the Facebook public event as well.) I would love, love, LOVE to see your face. In real life. Seriously, WHAT a concept.

Info from the event page:

As a non-profit keen on supporting LGBTQIA2S+ students at Trinity Western, and building bridges across political stances on hot-button issue, Stacey is an important voice in the conversation. Still to this day, “Gay Christian” is an oxymoron, but Stacey’s life-story speaks to how for her and many others those terms are inseparable.

EVENT LOW-DOWN:

6:45pm Doors Open

7:00pm Stacey will share followed by a short artist talk back.

Light refreshments will be available.

Signed books will be available for sale at the event. In order to help us order the correct number of books, please indicate your interest in purchasing a book at the event by clicking the add-on that says: “Pledge to Purchase “Still Stace” @ Event”.

**PLEASE NOTE: All Provincial Health Officer orders will be strictly adhered to. In the event where lower capacity is required, tickets will be honoured on a first-come-first-serve basis. In the event that is not safe to gather, the event will move to zoom. Ticket holders will be sent a zoom link. Red, Yellow, and Green stickers will be provided to all attendees to show their social distancing comfort levels. Guests who violate any event rules or refuse to respect individual comfort levels with social distancing will be asked to leave immediately.

(Stay tuned for another launch in my (now local) Chilliwack! Details to come….)

An LGBTQ podcast & interview.

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Just catching up on some places I have been speaking lately! Keep an eye on my Speaking page to see all the latest chats. These last couple were so much fun! Stay tuned for more 🙂

Sunday, June 27, 2021 – (Langley, BC) – I had a great conversation with Rev. Ryan Tristin Chapman at United Church of Langley (in person, what a treat!) and it aired for their service on YouTube on June 27th at 10:30 AM PST. Video is available below. (Our conversation is about 23 mins, starting at 22:59)


Sunday, June 30, 2021Nancy Shadlock, host of The Coming Out Chronicles, invited me on her great podcast! Go subscribe where all great podcasts are available, and have a listen!

“Stacey Chomiak takes us through her story of growing up closeted in the Evangelical church. Living in a not-so-supportive environment and the struggles of not having someone to talk to, Stacey talks about how exactly that changed and why. Today Stacey is creating books that help others not feel alone in that storyline. Her soon-to-be-released young adult visual novel is going to offer hope and inspiration to many that currently feel alone and like outcasts in their families and churches.”

My books! Pride recommended reading!

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Wowzers! A huge thank you to Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI) for putting both “Rainbow Boy” (Picture Books category) & “Still Stace: My Gay Christian Coming-of-Age Story” (Young Adult category) on their recommended reading list for Pride month 2021! (Four months today until Still Stace comes out!!)

I got my STILL STACE ARC!

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OKAY.

I didn’t even know this was coming, and when the kids helped me pull it out of the packaging (amid a flurry of screams), my heart skipped a beat!! (Or seven.)

I have been working on this for two years saying, “This is gonna be a book!” And now I’m holding it saying, “THIS IS A BOOK.”

This is my Advance Reading Copy (ARC) of STILL STACE from the publisher, and it’s got little mistakes and quirks that won’t be in the final. (Also the final will be hard copy!) But WHOOBOY I’m still gonna cradle it like it’s my third baby. Just over 4 months to go! It’s so cool seeing all my illustrations on PAPER, sheesh capeesh.

It’s Pride month & my story couldn’t be any gayer, so pre-order yours today! (Seriously tho, pls pre-order – it helps the publishers know how well it will do!) Reminder, our target audience is teens ages 13-18 (but adults can read YA books too)!

Speaking in two places at once!

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Thanks to pre-recording my messages, I was able to speak at two churches today! (Thanks technology!)

The first was at Harcourt Memorial United Church in Guelph, Ontario, for their Affirming Sunday Service! With everything going on, it felt most appropriate to share about the challenge of balancing both grief & joy. My message is about 12 mins long, starting at 14:37 on the below video. Feel free to enjoy their entire beautiful service, though!

They also asked me to write a blessing for them, as part of being the guest speaker. I thought I would share the text of that here too. (It’s at the end of my message.)

May you feel warmly supported 

When you relax into grief

May you wrap your arms around yourself

In loving kindness

Knowing you have been doing your best

And you have been trying so very hard 

May you envision our Mother or Father God,

Wrapping their all encompassing arms around you

In your pain, in your sorrow, and in your joy

May you have the courage to feel the pain

To really feel it

But in doing so, also be filled from a deep well of hope

In life’s endless possibilities, in the triumph of love

In the beauty of the small moments 

In each deep healing breath

And may you feel God’s love gently pursuing you

Shining warmly upon youLike the fresh morning sun

May you place your hand on your heart, and feel the soft, strong beats

And know you are not alone

And you are loved.


The second was sharing my message at my home church Open Door Church here in Maple Ridge, BC. I was so excited and honoured that they invited me to share on the first Sunday in Pride month! I originally recorded this message in Nov 2020 for a conference where I got un-invited, and it was wonderful to finally share it with my own beloved community. We gathered on our Facebook page to be together live, and here is the archived service in its’ entirety. (They read Rainbow Boy near the beginning too, which was so fun to watch! Thanks ODC friends!)