Aug 192012
 

 

This Friday, August 24th, I’m thrilled to welcome Jessica Valenti, writer and founder of feministing.com to Sex Out Loud. Jessica Valenti will talk to us about her latest book, The Purity Myth: How America’s Obsession with Virginity Is Hurting Young Women, which was also turned into a documentary. We’ll discuss abstinence-only education, recent attempts by legislators to control women’s reproductive health care, and long term effects of the current climate on women and sexuality. I will also talk with Jessica, author of Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to Why Feminism Matters, about her experiences as a feminist writer and activist, and where she thinks the next generation of online organizing will lead us. Tune into our show at 8 pm ET / 5 pm PT.

Jessica Valenti – called one of the Top 100 Inspiring Women in the world by The Guardian – is the author of three books: Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman’s Guide to Why Feminism Matters, He’s a Stud, She’s a Slut…and 49 Other Double Standards Every Woman Should Know, and The Purity Myth: How America’s Obsession with Virginity is Hurting Young Women which has been made into a documentary by the Media Education Foundation. She is the editor of the anthology Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape, which was named one of Publishers Weekly‘s Top 100 Books of 2009.

Jessica is also the founder of Feministing.com, which Columbia Journalism Review calls “head and shoulders above almost any writing on women’s issues in mainstream media.” Her writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Nation, The Guardian (UK), The American Prospect, Ms. magazine, Salon and Bitch magazine. She has won a Choice USA Generation award and the 2011 Hillman Journalism Prize for her work with Feministing. She has appeared on The Colbert Report and the Today show, among others, and was profiled in The New York Times Magazine under the headline “Fourth Wave Feminism.”

Jessica is also a widely sought-after speaker who gives dozens of speeches at universities and organizations in the U.S. and abroad. She received her Masters degree in Women’s and Gender Studies from Rutgers University.

Aug 152012
 

Artwork by Joe Newton for The Stranger

While Dan Savage was on vacation, the “Savage Love” Letter of the Day—a.k.a. SLLOTD—had to go on! So Dan asked three different guest columnists to field his readers’ questions while he’s away. I was the guest columnist August 13-17! You can read each of my questions and answers on the SLOG, along with readers’ comments which were diverse and very opinionated here:

August 13: Even Less Kinky Than Plain Vanilla, about incompatibility, kinkiness, and communication
August 14: Fetishes, Porn, Meatballs, and Eggs, about women’s fetishes, a gyno sex fantasy, and gossip
August 15: Hungover and Hurt, about a partner’s boundary violation (trigger warning)
August 16: Maybe I’m More Vanilla Than I Thought, about crossdressing, anal, and sexual compatibility
August 17: Less Face, More Fuck, about a new Dom/sub sex partner who’s avoiding intercourse

Aug 032012
 
The second edition of The Femme’s Guide to the Universe is now available in ebook. If you’re not familiar with this goddess life manual, check out what author Shar Rednour has to say about it below!
~~~
Many of you know that the original was published 12 years ago and was very popular. Now there is a whole generation who needs to know  ”How to Fuck in High Heels” or where to look up the definition of “ecru”!
Are you a Baby Diva, Experience Queen or Outrageous Goddess? Femme Dyke, Femme Lesbian, Queer Femme or do you simply want to date us? Maybe you don’t even know what LGBT stands for but you want a women’s empowerment boot camp? GODDESS LIFE MANUAL? Need to know how to get a garter-belt on but your panties off? Do you ever wonder if long nails are the answer to bad ice cube trays? Official and complete–Dating Is Shopping: A Step-by-Step Guide with checklist included! Many fans aren’t femme at all but need a good gravy recipe.
When I say GUIDE TO THE UNIVERSE–I mean it. Big or small, rich or just broke, country gals to city ones, I have help for the diverse citizens of Shartopia. Femme transwoman? Oh Girl get on in here-in Shartopia. You know a femme is a femme is a helloooo, Goddess. What other book teaches you How to WALK in High Heels, How to F*ck in High Heels and also simply where to buy used paint?  You can’t leave home without How to Start a Car, a Riot & a Fire and Shar’s Secrets to Stain Removal is one of the most referenced sections in Femme literature. Learn what should be in your toolbox, under your bed and on your outgoing message.
And finally, The Femme’s Guide provides the Girl Goddess Glossary–that secret de-coder book that we never got when we joined the Queer Dating Club!!
Download your copy of Femme’s Guide to the Universe today!
Jul 262012
 

  • Glorified Love Letters wrote a review (aka a love letter) to Ultimate Guide for Kink and Sinclair Sexsmith featured the book in Lambda Literary’s Cliterotica 2012, a quarterly lesbian erotica review roundup.
Jul 082012
 


My head is still spinning from my first appearance on Melissa Harris-Perry on Saturday. Watch it below or at these links—Segment 1: Porn in America and Segment 2: The Business of Pornography. I’ve done a fair amount of television appearances, and I have mixed feelings about them. In the past, I feel like many TV producers shy away from difficult topics, don’t allow for complex, nuanced analysis, and often want me to “dumb it down.” This time, none of that happened. I was excited when a producer for the Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC contacted me last week about a show about female sexuality and porn. We had a spirited conversation where I feel like she really listened to me, rather than attempted to fit me into a quasi-script she had already written. When I found out that one of my co-panelists was author and activist Jaclyn Friedman, I felt relieved to have a sex-positive feminist sister there.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Segment 1 of 2 “Porn in America”

Fun fact: Jaclyn Friedman and I were both in the class of ’93 at Wesleyan University, and we were fellow activists and friends during college. Although we’ve followed and supported each other’s careers since then (I blurbed her newest book What You Really Really Want: The Smart Girl’s Shame Free Guide to Sex and Safety and she appeared on my radio show Sex Out Loud), we hadn’t been in the same room since the late 90s. We had dinner the night before, and Jaclyn reminded me we wouldn’t talk about the show, so that everything would stay fresh for the next day. We had plenty of catching up to do, so it didn’t matter!

At every stage of the booking process, the folks behind the scenes at MHP were competent, respectful, and, well, have their shit together. In the green room before the show, Jaclyn and I met Zephyr Lookout (author of Mousepads, Shoe Leather, and Hope: Lessons from the Howard Dean Campaign for the Future of Internet Politics) who sat on the panel for an earlier segment and would be joining ours. She is a law professor at Fordham. I liked her immediately, and we bonded over our love of the children’s book Tuck Everlasting. She admitted she was “probably the most anti-porn of everyone on the panel,” which I appreciated her saying up front. It’s actually refreshing to engage with someone who really wants to dig into the topic and isn’t just ready to shut you down (like Gail Dines and crew are). After being fitted with our mics and mic packs (during which Jaclyn had her hands all the way up my dress to assist the sound guy), the three of us sat down at the table. That’s when I met the fourth panelist, Georgetown professor Michael Eric Dyson (author of Holler If You Hear Me), and I truly had no idea what he was going to say about porn. I was pleasantly surprised to discover he knows quite a bit about it (he name checked Lexington Steele and Mr. Marcus!) and had smart things to say.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Segment 2 of 2 “Business of Pornography”

MHP introduced me as a feminist pornographer and showed the cover of my new book The Feminist Porn Book: The Politics of Producing Pleasure, co-edited with Celine Parrenas Shimizu, Constance Penley, and Mireille Miller-Young and forthcoming from The Feminist Press at CUNY in 2013. The two segments just flew by so fast, and suddenly, she was doing the closing of the show (naming activist teen Julia Bluhm the Foot Soldier of the Week for petitioning Seventeen magazine).

Afterward, we all stood in the hallway, continuing the conversation, and I got to meet several more of the show’s producers including Jamil Smith and Executive Producer Shirley Zilberstein. Melissa Harris-Perry is so smart, it’s actually intimidating. But in a good way. Obviously, we barely scratched the surface on some pretty important topics. I have a whole lot more to say about race politics in the porn industry, shifting representations of sexuality in porn, today’s porn economy, queer porn, and on and on. But this was definitely a start, and great one.

Jaclyn Friedman, me, Melissa Harris-Perry, Michael Eric Dyson backstage at MHP

Very few mainstream media outlets, and even fewer, if any, television news shows are willing to look at porn in an intelligent or balanced way. I am so impressed that Melissa Harris-Perry and her producers took a risk and really broke down a barrier. I know they have already gotten flack about it from conservatives and anti-porn feminists. So, if you want to show your support for the topic of this show, applaud Melissa Harris-Perry and MSNBC for making space for this conversation, you can do so in a number of ways:

Watch the clips: Segment 1 “Porn in America” and Segment 2 “The Business of Pornography”

Comment on the blog about the segments

Email the MSNBC network with your support

Tweet your support to @MHPShow and @MSNBCTV

 

Jun 252012
 

My guest on Sex Out Loud on Friday, June 29 at 5:00 pm Pacific time/8:00 pm Eastern time on the VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network is Rachel Kramer Bussel – an author who has so far edited over 40 sexy collections, including the Best Sex Writing of 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2012. Rachel and I will talk kinky erotica, BDSM, and sex writing, including the phenomenon of the 50 Shades trilogy. She’ll also discuss her latest book, Suite Encounters: Hotel Sex Stories. For this live show, Rachel has said absolutely NO topic is off limits, so be ready to call in with your most provocative questions and topics!

Rachel Kramer Bussel (rachelkramerbussel.com) is a New York–based author, editor and blogger. She has edited over forty books of erotica, including Anything for You: Erotica for Kinky Couples; Suite Encounters; Going Down; Irresistible; Gotta Have It; Obsessed; Women in Lust; Surrender; Orgasmic; Bottoms Up; Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica; Fast Girls; Smooth; Passion; The Mile High Club; Do Not Disturb; Going Down; Tasting Him; Tasting Her; Please, Sir; Please, Ma’am; He’s on Top; She’s on Top; Caught Looking; Hide and Seek; Crossdressing; Rubber Sex, and is Best Sex Writing and Best Bondage Erotica series editor. Her anthologies have won 8 IPPY (Independent Publisher) Awards, and Surrender won the National Leather Association Samois Anthology Award. Her work has been published in over one hundred anthologies, including Best American Erotica 2004 and 2006 and Zane’s Chocolate Flava 2 and Purple Panties. She wrote the popular “Lusty Lady” column for the Village Voice.

Rachel has written for Bust, The Daily Beast, The Frisky, Glamour, Gothamist, Huffington Post, Inked, Mediabistro, Newsday, The New York Observer, New York Post, Penthouse, The Root, Salon, San Francisco Chronicle, Time Out New York and Zink, among others. She hosted the popular In the Flesh Erotic Reading Series (inthefleshreadingseries.com), featuring readers from Susie Bright to Zane, and speaks at conferences, does readings and teaches erotic writing workshops across the country. She blogs at lustylady.blogspot.com and cupcakestakethecake.blogspot.com.

And! For those folks near NYC, Rachel is conducting a free erotic writing workshop at 7 pm on July 25th at Babeland on Mercer Street in SoHo. RSVP here: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/3706442068

Jun 122012
 


My next guest on Sex Out Loud is author, performer, playwright, and gender theorist Kate Bornstein. Join us on Friday, June 15 at 5:00 pm Pacific time/8:00 pm Eastern time on the VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network when we’ll talk about her new memoir, her years as a high-ranking Scientologist working directly for L. Ron Hubbard, her transition, BDSM and kink, her time as a collared slave, the documentary being made about her, her own mental health and the struggles LGBT folks with mental health issues face. Plus, she’ll read one of the most provoactive sections from A Queer and Pleasant Danger.

Kate Bornstein is an author, playwright and performance artist whose latest book is her memoir, A Queer and Pleasant Danger. Other published works include the books Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation, Gender Outlaw: On Men, Women, and the Rest of Us, My Gender Workbook, Hello, Cruel World: 101 Alternatives To Suicide For Teens, Freaks, and Other Outlaws and the cyber-romance-action novel, Nearly Roadkill with co-author Caitlin Sullivan. Kate’s plays and performance pieces include Strangers in Paradox, Hidden: A Gender, The Opposite Sex Is Neither, Virtually Yours, and y2kate: gender virus 2000.

Kate’s books are taught in over 120 colleges and universities around the world; and she has performed her work live on college campuses, and in theaters and performance spaces across the USA, as well as in Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Austria. Kate is currently touring colleges, youth conferences and high schools, speaking, leading workshops, and performing. Follow her on Twitter @KateBornstein.

Jun 052012
 


My guests on Sex Out Loud on Friday, June 8 at 5:00 pm Pacific time/8:00 pm Eastern time on the VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network are Susie Bright and her daughter Aretha Bright. We’ll talk about Susie’s memoir, Big Sex, Little Death, what it was like growing up with a sexpert Mom, how to talk to your kids about sex, and their new book, Mother/Daughter Sex Advice. Plus, I’ll put them to the test when I ask them to answer questions from listeners.

Susie Bright is the author more than a dozen books, including Full Exposure: Opening Up to Sexual Creativity and Erotic Expression, How to Write a Dirty Story: Reading, Writing, and Publishing Erotica, and Mommy’s Little Girl: On Sex, Motherhood, Porn, & Cherry Pie. She is the editor of more than 25 anthologies, including The Best American Erotica series and the Herotica series.  Her memoir, Big Sex Little Death was recently released in paperback. She is the host and producer of Audible’s weekly podcast, In Bed With Susie Bright. Bright was co-founder and editor of On Our Backs magazine, and the first journalist to cover erotic cinema and the porn business in the mainstream press. A progenitor of the sex-positive movement, Bright taught the first university course on pornography, and brought lasting sexual influence to her role in films like Bound and The Celluloid Closet, as well as playing herself, “the feminist sex writer,” on Six Feet Under. She co-authored her latest book, Mother/Daughter Sex Advice, with her daughter Aretha Bright.

Aretha Bright’s debut book is Mother/Daughter Sex Advice. She is 21 and lives in San Francisco. She can’t boast the same credentials as her mom yet (She’s ready to fly down to Hollywood at a moment’s notice!) but is busy as a new author, pysch graduate from San Francisco State University, and working gal. Aretha is interested in travel, sex, books, holidays, and pizza, among other things. You can follow Aretha on her blog.

May 182012
 

Author, Sex Educator, Filmmaker Tristan Taormino to Host Show on VoiceAmerica Radio Network

Tristan Taormino, internationally acclaimed author, sex educator, college lecturer, and feminist pornographer “Sex Out Loud” on VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network. The show debuts June 1 at 5 pm Pacific Time, 8 pm Eastern Time.

PHOENIX, AZ, May 21, 2012 – VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network, Internet broadcasting pioneer, producing and syndicating online audio and video, today announced the debut of Sex Out Loud, hosted by internationally acclaimed author, sex educator, college lecturer, and feminist pornographer Tristan Taormino on the VoiceAmerica Variety Channel on Friday, June 1, at 5 pm Pacific Time, 8 pm Eastern Time.

Sex Out Loud explores the world of sexuality from every angle. Tristan Taormino will interview leading authors, educators, artists and icons and give listeners an uncensored, inside look at alternative sexual practices and communities. She’ll delve into topics from the popular to the taboo, including sex education and sexual health, erotic fantasies, BDSM, non-monogamy, the adult industry, and more. Tristan and her guests will also answer listeners’ questions live. Her first guest will be Dan Savage, sex advice columnist, author, co-creator of the “It Gets Better” campaign, and star of MTV’s “Savage U.” Upcoming guests include Kate Bornstein, Buck Angel, Jaclyn Friedman, Jessica Valenti, Bobbi Starr, Susie Bright, and her daughter, Aretha Bright.

Tristan has been educating and entertaining people for over fifteen years. A former columnist for “The Village Voice,” Tristan’s sex-positive attitude and sharp wit have made her a sought after guest on radio and television shows across the United States and abroad including “Howard Stern,” “Loveline,” “Ricki Lake,” and HBO’s “Real Sex.” Most notably, she was a recurring guest on “Ricki Lake” for two seasons, gave sex advice to Danny Bonaduce and the late Dick Clark on the NBC talk show “The Other Half,” and debated Dr. Drew Pinsky and Joe Scarborough on MSNBC. She is a widely recognized expert on sex education, GLBT issues, alternative relationships, and feminist pornography. She frequently lectures at top colleges and universities, including Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Princeton, Columbia, Brown, UCLA, and NYU.

“Tristan Taormino is known around the world for her honest, down to earth, sex-positive advice, books, and films,” says Karen Dana, Executive Producer of Sex Out Loud. “We are so thrilled that she’s joining the VoiceAmerica Network, and her show is sure to inform and inspire our listeners.” Sex Out Loud follows Sex with Jaiya, the Variety Channel’s most popular show, giving listeners two hours of exciting, informative sex education.

Sex Out Loud is sponsored by The Smitten Kitten, an award-winning progressive sex toy retailer; Astroglide, one of the leading personal lubricant brands; and We-Vibe, the most popular rechargeable vibrator for couples in the world.

Sex Out Loud airs live on Fridays at 5 pm Pacific / 7 pm Central / 8 pm Eastern on The VoiceAmerica Variety Channel. To read more about the show, go to sexoutloudradio.com. To access the show, log on at http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2096/sex-out-loud. All shows will be available in Tristan Taormino’s Content Library on The VoiceAmerica Variety Channel for on-demand and podcast download.