Katy Guest

Katy Guest is the literary editor of the Independent on Sunday

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It's OK to be Gay: the book is a collection of inspirational stories from well-known figures including entertainers, journalists, a Paralympian and a peer of the realm

Shelley Silas and Evan Davis share their coming out experiences

Extended extracts of the writer and TV presenter's 'coming out' stories from a new book launched in support of Diversity Role Models

Why do I think these uncomfortable thoughts?

I was thinking a lot this summer about armpits. You do, if you're a feminist. Because generally women shave their armpits and generally men don't; armpit hair becomes a feminist issue. But, if it's anti-feminist to shave your body, does that mean that all empowered men should wear beards? Or are we just obliged out of politeness to depilate the bits that other people see? It would seem a bit weird if a hairy man could not go sleeveless to the office, and yet women are apparently allowed to feel the summer breeze around their vest tops. What if men shaved and wore something strappy? What would happen if we all just wore the most comfortable thing we could find to do our jobs? Are comfy T-shirts just one step away from chaos? Do I think too much about armpits?

Val McDermid has written best-selling crime novels

The Pink List 2013: Val McDermid, Nigel Owens and Charlie Condou share their coming out stories

Funny, moving and inspiring, the reminiscences of gay people are collected in a new book which, says Katy Guest, can change lives

Mix hip hop with Shakespeare? Why ever not?

Thank goodness one brave speaker at the Tory conference had the guts to stand up and identify something in today's society that is "positively evil" and a blight on inner-city kids. What was it? The bedroom tax? Cuts to benefits? George Osborne's new hairstyle? Oh no. Setting Shakespeare to a hip-hop beat is the dangerous affront to Britain's youth, according to Lindsay Johns, an incredibly smart and passionate youth mentor and writer who nonetheless manages to give the impression of being created by Michael Gove out of a 3D printer and a stick-on beard.

Nicola Adams topped the list last year

Who’ll top the IoS Pink List this year? That’s up to you

Katy Guest opens search for UK’s influential gay, bisexual and transgender people

Smokers, what's hard is seeing a loved one die early

If aliens were secretly watching the Earth, there are many things that would puzzle them about the behaviour of humans: commuting; quinoa; stilettos; Miley Cyrus …. But surely the most bizarre and illogical thing we do is smoking tobacco. If you've never seen it, look up the 1970s Bob Newhart sketch in which a 16th-century British government official talks to an excitable Walter Raleigh: "You can shred the leaves … put it in a little piece of paper … OK Walt, and then what do you do with it? Ha ha ha... you set fire to it, Walt?" I still find smoking just as baffling.

Welcome to London. Things you might see on public transport include snogging, sex...and a horse

Transport chiefs in Vienna are aiming to prevent public snogging by imposing fines

So did Sarah Teather need to be a parent to be families' minister?

Tim Loughton's attack says more about his own character than anything else

Georgia, third from left, received a torrent of offensive tweets after Thursday’s episode

Bullying has left the playground and joined the currency of adult life but Twitter is an insult too far

Shocking reaction of grown-ups on Twitter to a teenage girl whose behaviour at school is charted in a fly-on-the-wall documentary

Pope Francis - a religious leader with a message of tolerance? Well, fancy that!

When we think of all the other silly mistakes that could have been avoided if only the Pope had spoken up sooner, it is really quite frustrating

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Day In a Page

Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
eBay's enduring appeal: Online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce retailer

eBay's enduring appeal

The online auction site is still the UK's most popular e-commerce site
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law