I am incredibly proud to announce that my article, titled “Sporting Bads” has just been published in the Fall issue of Bitch Magazine. The piece dissects how big sporting goods companies, such as Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s, market their products to women.
Bitch Magazine has had a huge impact on me personally. I think I first started reading Bitch about seven years ago, early in high school. I’ve always felt strongly feminist, and would get outraged by the stupid, condescending, sexist BS so often used to hawk cheap crap in the mainstream media. The jocks in my school drove me crazy. My mind raced with self-doubt. Why doesn’t everyone start yelling at the TV because of a detergent ad? Am I just too sensitive? Isn’t this offensive to everyone?
Well, when I started reading Bitch, I realized that I wasn’t alone. Other people were just as upset by Dove’s ridiculous “campaign for real beauty” as I was. There were plenty of people out there that thought the way I did, they just didn’t happen to live in my hometown. But that was okay. Just reading the soothing words of other intelligent, reasonable (but ruthless!) feminist writers was enough to give me a light at the end of the black tunnel of high school. It gave me hope.
My mother always hated that I read Bitch, purely because of the title. But I knew better. Other imitation feminist glossies like Bust just infuriated me more. I remember reading a how-to article about travel in Bust that I was initially excited about. However, the author advised having sex with foreign men overseas and then crashing at their place in order to save money on hotels. Seriously. I was dumbstruck. I knew that kind of total lunacy disguised as third-wave, sexually liberated feminism would never fly in Bitch. I’ve been a devoted reader ever since.
So to actually be published in a magazine that I’ve admired for so long is pretty surreal. And fitting, I think. What better place to start?
I have been a lifelong fisherman, and it was exciting to use that knowledge, combined with feminist critique, to write this article. Many thanks to Will Ryan are in store. Will has been my professor and mentor at Hampshire College for three years now. I took his courses, “The Sporting Life” and “Writing About the Outdoors,” and subsequently was Will’s TA for The Sporting Life last year. Those classes gave me 99% of my background in the history of the outdoors, and were invaluable in helping me put this piece together.
I’m also greatly indebted to all of the local writers, notably Pamela Petro (<3 you Pam!) who taught JanTerm nonfiction workshops at Smith College. I was able to ask all of them, “So how do you actually query an editor? Seriously.” Their answers are the only reason I’ve been published at all.
It’s crazy that people all over these United States can go into a bookstore and read what I have to say about stuff. And pay to do it, no less! I got kicked out of class in high school for telling everyone what I thought, so this is a refreshing change.
And to all the jerks who called me a Femi-Nazi for four years… bite me 🙂 I get paid for my feminist opinions now, bitches!
In closing, Bitch Magazine has really been feeling the financial crunch in the publishing industry as of late, and is teetering on the brink of having to fold for lack of funds. Please help support independent print media and feminist critique by donating to Bitch!