Writing Ourselves Whole

"Liberty is the right not to lie." - Camus via Califia

A blog about sexual healing, erotic writing, and the transformative power of words.

Monday, April 26, 2010

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Spring workshops with Writing Ourselves Whole!

(please feel welcome to forward this information! thank you!)

Writing Ourselves Whole
Spring 2010 Workshops

This April, re-engage with the deep-rooted and transformative power of writing!

Join us in one of our exercise-initiated and non-judgmental AWA writing workshops:

Write Whole: Survivors Write
Monday evenings, 4/12 - 6/7
Open to all women survivors of sexual trauma

Declaring Our Erotic
Tuesday evenings, 4/13 - 6/8
Open to all (18+, please)

o In the Write Whole: Survivors Write workshop, you'll gather with other survivors of sexual trauma to create new art and new beauty out of life's difficult and complicated realities. Learn to trust the flow of your own writing, and receive immediate feedback about the power of your words!
Remember: identity categories like 'woman' and 'survivor' are self-defined!

o In the Declaring Our Erotic workshop, you'll try your hand at some explicit erotic writing, and, in so doing, will get more comfortable exploring and talking about sexual desires, explore the varied and complex aspects of sexuality and desire, receive strong and focused feedback about your new writing!

No previous writing experience necessary! Workshops held in San Francisco in an accessible space, a half-block from BART and on many MUNI lines. Spaces are still available, though limited, and pre-registration is required! Fee for each eight-week workshop is $225-300, sliding scale.

To register or with any questions, contact Jen at jennifer (at) writingourselveswhole.org.
For more information, please visit www.writingourselveswhole.org!

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Friday, February 26, 2010

Body Heat -- March 2010 Tour Dates and Venues!

The tour hits the road in just a couple of weeks -- and I'm so excited to get out there and connect with folks again!!

The heat the heat the heat!


The fourth installment of Body Heat: The Femme Porn Tour is set to hit the road March 12th, 2010 with the tour beginning in Boston, Massachusetts and ending in Vancouver, Canada. The line-up will feature Body Heat founder and spoken-word performer Kathleen Delaney (Atlanta, GA.), Sister Spit vet, former slam champion, filmmaker, and writer Meliza Bañales (San Francisco, CA), published author and sex-workshop facilitator Jen Cross (San Francisco, CA), Nationally renowned singer / performer Nicky Click (Durham, NH), Erotic writer and versatile performer Alex Cafarelli (San Francisco, CA.), and the always intoxicatingly sophisticated, old school class, grace and smoldering style of Vagina Jenkins (Atlanta, GA).

Armed with an arsenal of erotic song, dance, camp, poetry, smut, and prose Body Heat was hailed by the Center for Sex Positive Culture (Seattle, WA.) as “The best Femme porn writers in the country.” These ‘pull no punches,’ ‘it’s never too nasty,’ power femmes are touring to support and promote queer femmes and their contributions to erotica, the sex industry and the sex-positive movement. Thru the use of art and performance they are literally, visually, emotionally, psychologically and socially revealing a more complex sexual identity for queer femmes. You can check them out www.myspace.com/femmeporntour or write femmeswriteporn@yahoo.com.

March 13th - Boston, MA.
@ Lily Pad
1353 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA.
(special guest Gigi Frost of The Femme Show)

March 14th - NYC
@ Bluestockings
Bluestockings Radical Books
172 Allen Street
New York, NY 10002
(212) 777-6028
(special guest Gigi Frost & Diana Cage)

March 16th - Columbus, OH. - 1st night!!!!!!
1160 N. High
(special guests Viva Valezz & Missy Conley)
More info 614-564-7517
Email: skyecolumbus@sbcglobal.net

March 17th - Columbus, OH. - 2nd night!!!!!
sw corner 5th Ave. & High St.
More info 614-564-7517
Email: skyecolumbus@sbcglobal.net

March 18th - Milwaukee, WI.
@ The Tool Shed: An Erotic Boutique
2427 N. Murray Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53211
(414) 906-5304

March 19th - Minneapolis, MN.
@ Bedlam Theater
1501 S. 6th St
(in the West Bank neighborhood of Minneapolis)
special guests Pzychic Slutz

March 20th - Ann Arbor, MI.
@ Aut Bar
315 Braun Court
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(734) 994-0558 - office
$15.00 ($13.00 in advance)
(special guest Cookie Tuff)

March 21st - Chicago, IL.
@ Center on Halsted
3656 North Halsted, Chicago, IL 60613-5974
t (773) 472-6469 x 441
3pm - 5:30pm (matinee show!!!!!)
(also featuring local performer DeDe Dylynn)

March 22nd - Omaha, NE.
@ Connections
1901 Leavenworth Street, Omaha, NE 68102-3126
(402) 933-3033
time & door $ subject to change
ShadyBoi Productions

Body Heat would like to thank The Lloyd E. Russell Foundation and Carol Queen and The Center for Sex & Culture for their ongoing funding and support.

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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

On leaving

I'm saying goodbye to Oakland, goodbye lake view and long cement walks, goodbye lake birds who've let me stalk and hold you with my eyes, goodbye Preacher man on Sundays and 3-redwood stand in the park across the way and the flock of Canadian geese who take over and scare the dogs away. Goodbye Hanover street and neighbors who rankle and ratchet and share and watch out for each other. Goodbye neighbor with the two small white barking-at-all-times-of-the-day dogs and goodbye walk to Woody's. Goodbye Woody's. Goodbye this neighborhood dreams: you have been so good to us. Goodbye up the street flock of chickens. Goodbye neighbors houses with windows we can see into and who can see into ours. Goodbye coin-operated laundry, goodbye one bedroom apartment, goodbye sunset view in the living room and sunrise from the kitchen.

Goodbye Grand Lake Farmer's Market on Saturdays and goodbye Jack London Square Farmer's Market on Sundays. Goodbye interracial neighborhood. Goodbye Lake Merritt walkers who say hello and good morning to each other. Goodbye partially blind man who walks the lake every day with his cane and scruffy beard who has lost so much weight. Goodbye bird sanctuary, goodbye Grand Lake district, theater, Parkway (again).

Goodbye walking into the Trader Joe's and seeing lots of folks of many races. Goodbye morning walk to BART. Goodbye morning view of people making their way into the world, headed to work or exercise. Goodbye morning window writing here in #8. Goodbye walk-in closet/dressing room. Goodbye quick drive to our friends' for dinner for hsingyi for movies. Goodbye Jack London Square walks, white pelicans in the lake, great blue herons stretching out from morning to dusk with their wingspan. Goodbye Alameda beach walks, goodbye house-hunting for the time being.

Goodbye stairstep sidewinding jasmine and hawthorne. Goodbye Lake Merritt BART and goodbye lurker night herons, goodbye man who sits and listens to headphones and thinks and watches the morning come up over the Oakland hills across the lake from his vestibule outside shelter at the Oakland Auditorium, living there. Goodbye Witnesses at BART, goodbye It's a Grind at 11th and Clay, goodbye 7am garbage pickup banging, goodbye bright flowering backyard, goodbye electric stove, goodbye big lakeshore eucalyptus and big big oak.

Goodbye Oakland. Just in the living-in way, not in the forever or break-up way. We are always here, too, sheltered, heartsick and home.

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This is one of my writes from last night's workshop -- the prompt was Sarah Vaughan's rendition of "I feel pretty."

I infrequently feel pretty. When I first came out fem, I had fantasies about being the movie girl in front of the vanity, soft lights behind me and brash up front, makeup and brushes and atomizers of perfume splayed all around on dresser-top ready for spritzing, dusting, lining, pearling: being That Girl.

In real life, I can't habituate that girl, can't hold her down and climb into her skin, and, more to the point, i can't wait around for her to get dressed and done enough to daintyfoot herself into my skin. I have other things to do.

I've ached to be the pretty girl, the coquette, the charming klutz with the open face that guys -- and then butches -- just couldn't help but fall into. But then, in real life, I was more interested in being one of the guys, which is sort of the opposite of pretty girl -- isn't it? -- unless maybe you're a Queen, and then when I say "guys," I mean it ironically.

I put pretty on sometimes, but even then I keep ragged and rough and mussed and so pretty looks more like trashy, which I'm a lot more comfortable with. I idolize pin-up girl glamour and couldn't in a million years sit around in front of a fucking mirror every day long enough to get that glass-like gussied, just to hoof it right into a mud puddle and then whine about getting scuffed. I prefer glamour that's already ready to be smeared, that shows the true meanings of the word, glamour: a spell, witchery; glamour that lets the flaws, the real, through: shows unplucked chin and moustache beneath glitter and dark bands of eyeliner.

But these things do not make pretty. Pretty has a fragility to it that I just can't hold myself to, am unwilling to always be (yes, Ani) the kitten who needs rescuing, the one who won't eat for fear of stains, the one who won't run 'cause her shoes or skirt are too tight -- I am forever running pantyhose instead, and tearing fabric so I have a better range of motion.

What if we recalibrated pretty? But why should we, when so many other words fit better: smart, dirty, mouthy, unfettered, dangerous, roguish (yes, thank you, for a fem), calculating, powerful, aware, articulate, strong -- what if all of these are places of power for that which has been relegated to the land of pretty?

What if pink got to hold its full blood history again? The color of healing scars, of early arousal, of the just inseam of bared teeth: pink is not a dainty thing. Pink is the early blood, the foreshadowing, the heather of orchids.

I claim my right not to be pretty, to take interesting and exotic with pride, to swelter into the other labels of an engaged and cracked femininity laced with a boyness I just can't let go of all the way, not after I got so accustomed to its weight and musk after so many years -

I could do pretty when I was a boy, absolutely get all the transfags who mince into pretty as their finally due, who get to hold its danger in their hands and on their face now. Pretty boys make me want to squeal, 'cause they're dangerous, they walk with pretty and a dagger all at the same time, all hands on deck: pretty is never something for a boy to aspire to, and must always be wiped clean -- we fight for what we're not supposed to have.

I want to give any unworn pretty to these boys and their welterweight badness, learn something about the precision of desire and naming, learn something about the audacity we all require to wear our pink and chewy hearts on our sleeves.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Body Heat: queer femme tour shows! this Friday and Saturday (1/29 and 1/30) in San Francisco!

The Center for Sex and Culture presents

a special SNEAK PREVIEW of BODY HEAT: a femme porn tour -- 2010!

Sizzlin' Fierce Fiery Queer Femme Porn - 2 Nights, 2 Different Shows! ***DO NOT MISS THIS EVENT!!!!!!!***

Friday, January 29 and Saturday, January 30
Cost $10.00 - $15.00 you pick :)
At the Center for Sex & Culture, 1519 Mission Street (between 11th and South Van Ness), San Francisco, CA 94103

Come to the Center for Sex and Culture for the one of these barely-legal Bay Area performances of the Body Heat: Femme Porn Tour. Each night will offer up decadent performances/readings by fierce local queer femme writers, performers and devastritixes!

These will be your only chances to catch Body Heat during this spring!

Both shows begin at 8pm SHARP, $10-$15 (help us fill the kitty for Body Heat's 2010 cross-country tour!), no one turned away... FMI: http://www.myspace.com/femmeporntour

Friday, January 29th Performers:
Carol Queen
Kathleen Delaney
Jen Cross
Madison Young
Amelia Mae Paradise from Diamond Daggers

Saturday, January 30th Performers:
Shar Rednour
Daphne Gottlieb
Kathleen Delaney
Jen Cross
Alex Cafarelli
Lady Fantastique

Body Heat is a collective of fierce, sassy, irreverent Femme artists setting ablaze performance art communities and smashing Femme stereotypes. Porn, Kink, Smut, Erotica - Body Heat is not reclaiming our sex so much as OWNING it.

We will turn you on.

We will challenge all of your gender, sex, feminist, social, & political boundaries & assumptions.

We will entertain the hell out of you.

Mostly we will leave you panting, begging, dripping for more.



Center for Sex and Culture
1519 Mission St., bet 11th and So Van Ness, San Francisco!

the femmes of the Fall 09 Body Heat East Coast tour, tearing up the pool table in all the wrong ways...
fishnet knees, just before...

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Friday, January 8, 2010

Writing Ourselves Whole - early 2010 schedule!

one of the little altars in the workshop space

Happy 2010, all!

Here's a short list of what's coming for me/writing ourselves whole for the first part of the year -- starting next week!

Send me a note for more info (jennifer@writingourselveswhole.org)! (I, on the other hand, commence the deep breathing. :)



Begins next Monday! Winter 2010: Write Whole: Survivors Write. Open to all women survivors of sexual trauma. (8 Monday evenings beginning 1/11) $225-300, sliding scale

Winter 2010: Healing Through Writing: a workshop for folks living with cancer. Through the UCSF Mt. Zion Art for Recovery program. (7 Thursday mornings, begins 1/21) Contact Cindy Perlis for more info:Cynthia.Perlis@ucsfmedctr.org

Jan 30, 2010 (1-4pm): Declaring Our Erotic: a queer women's erotic writing workshop (In honor of the Body Heat Femme Porn Tour!), at the writing ourselves whole workshop space, $20

Jan 29-30, 2010 8pm, $10-15: Body Heat at the Center for Sex and Culture! Join us for one of these SNEAK PEEK pre-Tour shows! Jan 29: Carol Queen / Kathleen Delaney / Jen Cross / Madison Young /Vixen Noir aka Veronica Combs / Amelia Mae Paradise from Diamond Daggers; Jan 30: Shar Rednour / Daphne Gottlieb / Kathleen Delaney / Jen Cross / Alex Cafarelli / Lady Fantastique)

Feb 2010: Declaring Our Erotic: a writing workshop for ALL queer survivors of sexual trauma (4 Tuesday evenings, beginning 2/2, at Modern Times Bookstore. $50-100, sliding scale)

Feb 10, 5:30-6:30: Quick-n-Dirty Erotic Writing happy hour at Good Vibes, Polk St! Free! http://events.goodvibes.com

Feb 13, 12:00-4:00pm: Write Whole with Survivorship. Survivorship is an amazing and community-led org for folks who are survivors of ritual or cult abuse. Free!

March 10-27: Body Heat: Femme Porn Tour. The cross-country extravaganza! In this our fourth installment, Kathleen Delaney (Atlanta, GA.), Diana Cage (NYC), Meliza Bañales (San Francisco, CA), Jen Cross (San Francisco, CA), Nicky Click (Durham, NH),Gigi Frost (Boston, MA), Sossity Chiricuzio (Portland, OR.), Alex Cafarelli (San Francisco, CA.), and Al Schlong (Atlanta, GA) are prepared to rock off all your socks. We begin in Boston and our finale is scheduled for Vancouver! (Visit my website or myspace.com/femmeporntour FMI!

Spring 2010: Write Whole: Survivors Write - for women survivors of sexual trauma (8 Monday evenings beginning 4/5) $225-300, sliding scale

Spring 2010: Declaring Our Erotic: an erotic writing workshop open to everyone! (8 Tuesday evenings beginning 4/6) $225-300, sliding scale

Spring 2010: Healing Through Writing: a workshop for folks living with cancer. Through the UCSF Mt. Zion Art for Recovery program. (8 Thursday mornings, begins in April, date not yet confirmed) Contact Cindy Perlis for more info:Cynthia.Perlis@ucsfmedctr.org


Want more info? Check out www.writingourselveswhole.org!

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