Writing

Published: January 28, 2019

“Is the Concept of Virginity Outdated?” On Our Moon

One doesn’t have to reflect much on the way that virginity is defined to see that much of the emphasis is on the power of the penis. Specifically, the penis’s power to transform cis-women’s bodies.

Published: January 14, 2019

“Joy and Grief Through My Son’s Transition,” On Our Moon

Perhaps those of us who are supportive parents of trans kids, those of us who have opened up space for our children to express their gender identity, can extend that same compassion and understanding to ourselves and each other. Perhaps we can, among one another, have these conversations about complicated feelings: about gender, history, expectations, and love. Perhaps we can take our own feelings as seriously as we take our kids, and perhaps, if we do this, we will be able to move though these transitions with our kids with a bit more grace, in community.

Published: January 2, 2019

“There’s Much More Work Than Sex in Sex Work,” Pittsburgh City Paper

Selling panties is so much more than taking them off at night and sticking them in an envelope. It involves building a brand and an audience, cultivating relationships, and becoming a safe space where customers can feel comfortable sharing their desires.

Published: November 4, 2018

Dealing with Menstruation as a Sex Worker, On Our Moon

In a culture in which both period blood and sex work are taboo, both can seem mystifying. Periods are typically not talked about outside of very intimate friendships or relationships, and period blood is purposefully hidden. Similarly, sex work is spoken about in hushed tones.

Published: July 31, 2018

“Black, Queer, and ‘Super-Size’ BBWs Challenge What Society Sees as ‘Acceptably Fat,'” VICE’s Motherboard

In June, I wrote an article about the porn category of BBWs (an acronym meaning Big Beautiful Woman), in an effort to answer the question: What makes someone a BBW? This question was, in part, a personal one. I’m often considered a BBW performer myself. But classification always feels complicated to me (and for everyone I spoke with, too). Categories are constructed, and bodies don’t easily fall into categories.

Published: July 18, 2018

“Your Mother Is A Whore: On Sex Work and Motherhood,” The Establishment

Sex working mothers are at the front lines of radical sexual politics, as these front lines begin in our own homes.

Published: June 5, 2018

“What Being Labelled a ‘Big Beautiful Woman’ Means to Porn Performers,” VICE’s Motherboard

I write about the nuanced—and often discriminatory—world of BBW porn.

Published: May 27, 2018

“Four Sex Workers on What They Learned About Men’s Mental Health,” Men’s Health

I spoke with porn performers, phone sex operators, erotic dancers, and former escorts to find out what they have learned about men’s mental health from their work.

Published: May 22, 2018

“Reflections on Real Name Policies,” Cyborgology

Real name policies push important voices out of public discourse in a way that further stigmatizes and marginalizes entire groups of people.

Published: May 20, 2018

“Want to Figure Out the Rules of Sexual Consent? Ask a Sex Worker,” The Washington Post

I argue that while the rescue industry has argued that sex workers are incapable of exercising consent over their own bodies and choices (and therefore in need of saving), sex workers do in fact exercise consent as part of their job. Their expertise regarding consent is something that we should take seriously in the current public discourse around consent.

Published: April 2, 2018

“The Impact of FOSTA/SESTA on Online Sex Work Communities,” Cyborgology

Tech scholars and tech-oriented social scientists have real potential to do social good by examining these sites more closely and working to demystify the panic around trafficking. Without data to support this alternative understanding, sex workers of all sorts will be further marginalized and harmed. This is no small thing. Lives are at stake.

Published: March 26, 2018

“Fearing SESTA/FOSTA Will Make Sex Work More Dangerous, New SWOP Group is Organizing Local Harm Reduction Efforts,” Queer Pittsburgh with PJ Sage

We write about the dangers of FOSTA/SESTA for the online sex work community, and the newly formed Sex Worker Outreach Project chapter in Pittsburgh that is working to minigate that harm.

Published: November 17, 2017

“Sex Workers’ Social Media Scrutinized and US/Canadian Border,” Cyborgology

In a milieu where carefully crafted branding on social media is a large part of the work of being a sex worker—but where that very social media presence is often used as a weapon against us, restricting our mobility—we are in a bind.

Published: October 18, 2017

“Sex Work and the Value of Fantasy in Bladerunner 2049,” Cyborgology

Bladerunner 2019 pushes us to toil with this ambiguity between reality and fantasy, lived and created memory. It invites us, in other words, into an imaginative playscape in which intimacy of different kinds can open new possibilities.

Published: June 30, 2017

“Ron Jeremy, Exxxotica, and Twitter as a Form of Resistance,” Cyborgology

While rape culture and the conventional porn industry aren’t going to be dismantled overnight, sex workers (who have always been on the front lines of feminist causes) are using the tools of their trade to organize quicker, more collectively, and more effectively than before.