About Me

I’m someone who has travelled the world and finally found a place to call home, Edinburgh my oasis and place of coming out. I love Edinburgh and am drawn to its cinemas and theatres in particular. I’ve decided to share my weekly visits to shows and films, and hope it will help anyone interested in gaining a perspective.

I have never been a critic before and will do it my way: films and shows affect people in different ways, depending on their mood and what’s happening in their lives at the time. I will write reviews that reflect how I feel at the time. I think this is important, in case you think me an impartial observer. I never am. Whether it’s on a plane, or during a period of stress or sadness, or an attempt to clear my mind with mindless entertainment, how I feel will influence my review. In reading my reviews, you will know not only something about the show or film, but about this observer’s state of mind at the time.

In writing about Edinburgh’s cultural scene, I will also try to do something different. I came out in 2016 as a transgender female. I want to share my highs and lows, and let you know what it’s like to be trans in Edinburgh. I have a feeling I will disappoint those looking for something lurid or even just exciting. My life is rarely either. But it is unavoidably a trans life now, and with the West still working out what the hell we are, I’d like to add my two pence’ worth.

 Gina Maya 22.08.16

My Latest Posts

July 16, 2018

My Week in Netflix: Denial and The Stanford Prison Experiment

  My Week In Netflix: Denial and The Stanford Prison Experiment Denial (2016) is a film I was frustrated to miss at the cinema. Starring the ever-brilliant Rachel Weisz and Timothy Spall, it covers the real-life events of Holocaust-denier David Irving and his lawsuit against academic Deborah Lipstadt, who had accused Irving of wilful distortio...
July 15, 2018

The First Purge

  The First Purge A dystopian near-future with America under the control of white supremacists, The First Purge is the prequel to a crossover trilogy of horror and social commentary of disturbing prescience. Given political developments in the US since 2016 in particular, I'd place this film up there with Get Out! (2017) as the kind of twisted...
July 13, 2018

Learning to Smile

  Learning to Smile When I smiled, it was always awkward. My tightly closed lips – if you look at the other pictures of me in my Transgender Diary, you'll notice that you never see my teeth. In no photo of me going back to early childhood will you ever see my teeth. But then, in the final years before I came out as trans, you'll stru...
July 08, 2018

She Called Me Woman: Nigeria's Queer Women Speak

in Books

  She Called Me Woman: Nigeria's Queer Women Speak Transgender narratives seldom emerge outside white, Western experience - at least if we're talking about mainstream publishing. African trans, I'm aware only of the occasional documentary, which is what makes this book so especially valuable. An edited collection of personal stories, gathered ...
July 08, 2018

Sicario 2: Soldado

  Sicario 2: Soldado Islamist terror meets drug cartels and Mexican immigration: thus, does Sicario 2 begin, in literally explosive fashion. What emerges after the opening set pieces, however, is strangely un-dramatic, despite the best attempts of Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro to re-create the amoral desert of the original Sicario (2015). W...
July 01, 2018

I Don't Feel At Home In This World Anymore

  I Don't Feel At Home In This World Anymore (Netflix) My flatmate's been out of town for a few days, which has encouraged me to use the sofa in our living room a bit more often. This has never been an issue between us, she likes to stretch out on the sofa while I take the kitchen table. But these past few evenings alone in the flat have ...
July 01, 2018

Miss Maria, Skirting the Mountain

Miss Maria, Skirting the Mountain (Edinburgh Film Fesitval) As a snapshot of what it is to be a transgender female in a rural, religious setting, without medical aid or sympathy, I'd recommend this documentary. Miss Maria, Skirting the Mountain (2017), follows forty-something Maria in the foothills and pastures of Andean Colombia. The scenery ...
June 24, 2018

My World Cup diary (I)

​ My World Cup diary (I) Saturday Night My flatmate and I hosted a Beatles-themed party a few weeks ago. I chose the simple route for my Beatles-themed outfit, using string to tie lots of paperback novels to my waist, signifying  Paperback Writer.  It wasn't very inspired, but I did also create some mash-up posters for my flatmate (see pi...
June 15, 2018

Anxiety Dreams and the Cisgender Label

Anxiety Dreams and the Cisgender Label I know it's bad form to talk about one's dreams but I'd like to start this post by talking about how I woke up in darkness last night, after an evolving, unpleasant, anxiety dream about being trans. In the first half of the dream, people saw me in a nice apartment, and wanted to take it for themselves because ...