Friday, November 14, 2008
Deadline: May 24th 2009
Compiled/Edited by Sadie Lune
Whore Lover: Lovers and Partners of Sex Workers Speak
An anthology of non-fiction essays written by the non-paying partners (queer-trans-straight) of sex workers about their experiences and feelings regarding their unique position in the marketplace of love.
From casual dates, to long term relationships, to going down in flames, Whore Lover will explore the personal narratives of people attracted, intimate and in love with those who work in the sex industry. Present and former lovers and partners of sex workers are encouraged to submit. Whore Lover is looking to represent the stories of a multiplicity of people: people of color, trans, queer, gay, straight, of all ages. Partners in all areas of the sex industry will be featured.
Topics of interest include but are not limited to:
*Day to day negotiations
*My partner and I turned each other out
* I was a trick and then became a lover
*Loving a Sex Work Celebrity
*My partner's job turns me on
* My partner's work inspired me to be a sex work client
* I'm a sex worker and I only date other sex workers
*How I deal with family and friends around my partner's work
*How I've dealt (or not) with my own ego around my partner's sex work
*My partner switched jobs within the industry and how that worked for us
* My partner's sex work is a secret from everyone (including me?)
*I broke up with my partner because of sex work
People who have dated/loved/married all variety of sex workers including but not limited to: porn actors, strippers, FBSM/sensual massage providers, street-based workers, tantra providers, erotic body workers, sexual surrogates, escorts, fetish workers, phone-sex workers, pro-Dominants and pro-submissives, are welcome to submit.
A limited number of interviews are possible to those who are interested in having their voices heard but feel more comfortable talking than writing. No poetry, please.
Pseudonyms or anonymous submissions are fine and will be honored.
Pieces should be between 1000-7000 words.
Please submit via email attachment (pdf or doc file) to: email@example.com
Sunday, November 2, 2008
The election is in one week. In San Francisco we have a measure on the ballot that needs serious support. If passed, Prop K will essentially decriminalize prostitution and de-prioritize persecution and racial profiling of sex workers in San Francisco. If strongly supported, it could set a crucial precedent for dismantling the legal persecution of sex workers not just in San Francisco but throughout the nation, as well as make leaps in granting visibility to the public's support of sex worker's rights thereby chipping away at social stigma.
Please read a very well-written email my friend Harvey Rabbit sent out today regarding Prop K and make a stance as an ally to sex workers by donating money, telling your friends about, and (if you live in San Francisco) voting for Prop K.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
One Million Dollar Bills
you can try but you can't buy me"
For a grand and a half I can get:
And in return, to be good for you, I get a manicure and a pedicure. Earrings to soften my face. In the peach coloured dress which matches my underwear set I still look like a boy in drag, but I turn my eyes into wide open tear rimmed orbs with thick makeup, I tilt my hips back in high heels and I replicate gender identity "fancy ho" for you tonight.
A harness and cock so I can be the one getting sucked off one of these days…
I trail fingers over your clothed flesh. I know how addictive a palm can feel rubbing over a thigh from W doing it to me during sleepy afternoons, and I replicate this move on you. I am playing you well, purring about made up loves that I anticipate you'll have an appreciation for - bluegrass music, european countries, noir cinema. Knowing enough about them to be believable, but not enough so that there isn't plenty of room for you to teach me. You keep ordering drinks, making me sniff out the fruits in this red wine or hint of orange and cloves in that $14 shot of scotch. I don't want to drink any more or I wont have the control of my body that I need, and with the nausea that's been hitting me for the last few weeks I worry that things could get awkward. I want to say "you don't need to get me drunk, you're paying for it, it's guaranteed that you get to fuck me"…but I'm getting paid so well to be more tactful than that. I'm told of the places we're going to go together - trips to Italy, a night at the opera, I will get an accordion for christmas. I feign excitement although I have no interest in you becoming my sugar daddy, I want this transaction to be completed as soon as possible. But I can't help playing the daughter role, blushing and giggling at my own bland naughtiness
A night in a hotel so I can scream and cry while getting fucked by someone I desire
The bartender is consistently rude to us, I'm sure seeing a brigade of sweating middle aged men with pouty young women come in every night leave him weighed down by complicity. You don't seem to get it, and every time he rebuffs engagement I have to make it up to you. I will soothe away every person you can't buy. I will glorify you're triumphs against a hard world. I will be interested and malleable to your words, but smart and independent enough that my coming around to your way of seeing things means something. I am yours.
A new bicycle to fly through these sweet expanding streets
In the hotel room you undress me quickly. I agonize so much about this, the energy and the money I spend buying girl clothes and underpants which have the ability to rip me to sheds when I'm feeling vulnerable, and it never really matters. To you that is, for me it's necessary as a spell to create a character for whom this is a workable reality. I forget what we check off first - maybe I give you a blow job, or masturbate daintily, or maybe you jam your fingers inside me. Soon though, you are fucking me in the front, tossing me in between positions, arranging my limbs to make my hole feel better closed around you. Something feels different. Usually I like being fucked by johns, it's physically enjoyable and signifies an end or at least an upcoming pause of pace. But the second that you cum, a spray of semen hitting my stomach and chest, it's a drop into a pool of doom. Your orgasm was magnificent, I've never seen a man have multiple orgasms before, but it's just a hassle now. I have to wait 10 minutes to ask you "so when did the condom come off?" You don't know where it is, it came off sometime during your years of pounding me, and so you know…you pulled out. I fish inside myself awkwardly and find a scratchy wad of plastic hidden in the crevice against my cervix. You show me a vasectomy scar, you say "I'm safe, what about you…you know I have a wife and kids" so accusatorial, because of course, I'm the whore. In the shower I assure you that I get checked every month for STI's. You don't say how you know that you are HIV-, just a gut feeling I'm sure.
My rent for my cold windowless room in a city I'm fascinated by
When my best friend had a condom come off on her client, she freaked out on him, made him give her more money and threw him out the door. But she was in a brothel, I'm alone in this hotel with all my possessions scattered around. I'm too tired and drunk to make those kind of assertive movements, and at the base of it - I am perversely committed to my job. To finishing everything cleanly and compatibly, to not rob myself of the option of seeing this client again. So I stay, I turn on the vibrator and suck in my cheeks over your flaccid stretchy cock and I spoon into your body and pretend to sleep for my bargained 7 hours. You don't stop touching me all night, all the time I hear it, on the tip of your tongue…GET UP WAKE UP YOU SAID YOU LIKE ME SO NOW SERVICE ME. 30 minutes to 8 I stretch and make my words slow and confused, I let you fuck me again while staying callous and cold in my body. You try to enter me without a condom under the pretext that we've already been there before, and I am so enraged, so FUCKING enraged. But I am almost out of there, I just have to make it through a little more, before you hand me a tip I go downstairs get a taxi and fall into my home.
Healthcare to change my body into something closer to my truth
W asks me how it went and I don't want to give him this answer. I'm embarrassed that I still don't know how to protect myself, that I didn't know how to be charming enough to never be compromised. He rubs my feet and gets me back into my body, asks me solid questions into those blank hard eyes. We go to his room and he holds me, how can the same touch from two different people produce such different reactions in my nerves and blood? We are entwined and I am so distant but getting coaxed, brought back slowly slowly. We start fucking, and for once I wear more clothes than him. He wears underpants and I'm in jeans done up tight, we stick the hitachi between us and grind each other. Neither of us infiltrating each others bodies, neither of us taking each others space. This kind of sexless sex is healing me, and I growl and swallow and whisper: "bite me, please mark me". I can never be bruised for work, so that customers have an untarnished surface, but now he rips into my neck, mauls my throat, it's so honest and real and desperately needed. It's fucking outside of working outside economic survival outside exchange. Maybe he asks me if that trick was worth it, maybe I just ask myself while our noses touch. The worth of money fluxes but of course. It's hard to see the real value in these stacks of bills let loose to spill out of my makeup bag, they have been debilitating addiction and fantastical freedom.
The chance to not work for a while
A couple days later I get an email from someone who does reference checks for workers, they are asking about this john of mine. I don't know what to say, I feel weary and sad about my experience with him, but I don't anticipate that it will necessarily be repeated. I don't want another worker to miss out on the cash from a situation I feel blameworthy for. I say that he is generous and easy, but this little thing happened… I get a prompt reply that he will be denied a booking, that a client KNOWS when a condom comes off and that since he has not demonstrated himself as being responsible enough to take the correct action about it, he is not responsible enough to see this sex worker. I'm a little embarrassed because I don't know that I wont see him again. I prioritize money over my mental health, I am a bad reflection on sex work because I use it to teach myself lessons in hardness. But it's also so good to be believed, to have someone unquestionably take that big of an action on behalf of an offense on her community. It makes me want to work clearer to be stronger to not need to submit myself anymore.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
I just want to publish one of the two rude and inappropriate anonymous comments I received today. The following is a good example of the kind of comment that won't make it past the moderators (except in this bizarro exception). I encourage a broad perspective of viewpoints and opinions, in submissions and comments, and it is totally fine to (respectfully) disagree.
However, rude, inflammatory or super nut-jobby comments will not make the cut. And remember, this is a blog for current/former sex workers and their current/former personal, unpaid lovers and partners, so if you don't fit that criteria, don't try to slip past the ho-dar.
So delight in this frothing rant, dear readers, as it is the last you will hear from this Anonymous and their ilk.
Oh, WARNING. Strong, potentially triggering violent language below. There is nothing here that will help you feel connected to a community or good about your relationship, so do not read if terribly violent misogynist and homophobic language will ruin your day.
"The only real fully compatible mate for a prostitute is a real pimp. You have guys that might be partially compatible and some guys will be allright with it for a week or month but he is a square and the first argument you have he will call you a WHORE and not in a nice way. Pimps accept their women for being hoes and they forbid them to do unsafe nasty sex practices like bbbj dfk daty, where a high percentage of indy renegade prostitutes without pimps do daty bbbj dfk. Why do prostitutes without pimps lie? Because they want to live a double life and they are living a lie. It is wrong to lie and some square guys will beat up or kill their woman if they catch her fucking one man so imagine what can happen if he finds out she fucked and sucked hundreds may-be thousands of men and if she does bbbj and gives him a disease he might very well murder her. Imagine a married man being a down low homo getting his anus and rectum pummeled the average woman would be devasted if she caught her husband doing that. It is wrong and selfish to lie. The reason a lot of prostitutes don't have pimps is because they are to selfish to give their man the money she makes. She rather keep the money for herself and still make her square boyfriend pay for everything. But that greed always back fires and blows up in her face! Real hoes be with real pimps. The rest are just a fraud and they are living a lie! "
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
"You're JUST a fucking WHORE." Could my boyfriend say that—mean that—my Guy, a former hustler himself? I had to face it—I was holding a dustpan full of broken glass and crumbled drywall, and I'd lived the American Nightmare before. My partner of one year had just left me, violently, for being a working boy.
"You're a whore, whores don't love ANYONE, and you never loved ME." His slapdash logic nonetheless cut deep. After a year of foreplay and pillow talk, hard core fucking and excruciating honesty, all our love had been reduced to a single tautological falsity.
It's an ancient school that teaches Harlots are callous and unloving, more, as Blake phrased it, the prostitute "blights with plague the marriage-hearse," bringing pain to the young and unsuspecting ensnared in his or her Devil's trap. But I didn't think my boyfriend, a former modern-day hustler, ascribed to the thought—despite heaps of evidence to the contrary, of an almost all-American regularity to tricking as well as the relatively low STI transmission rates in most sex-trading "populations," the belief persists that sex workers are immoral, disease-spreading predators. And don't forget innocent victims.
I identify with les immoralistes myself. "Many are the victims she has brought down." Proverbs 7:26
While I feel at a distance from other "normal" relationship-goers at dysfunctional moments like these, I have never felt so close to my moralizing Baptist mother as I scrubbed cakes of drywall off the floors—just like she used to, on her knees, crying with Comet® powder scraping the red off her fingernails. She wasn't a card-carrying "whore" like I am, but it was my step-father's word for her and she was never one to DEN-Y that Devil, as we say on Sunday. While I, on the other hand, have listened to too much Tina Turner, too many motherly shrieks of "You're traumatizing the children!" from behind closet doors, to take this particular abuse from anyone ever, and I mean ever, again.
I called the NYPD.*
And now we're over . . . but, I guess, it's our beginnings I wonder about. If I've always been a "whore," and he's known it, I need a reason why he didn't end it at the start, obsta principii. I need a reason why, after all our careful conversations, naïve theories—polyamory, free love—I couldn't see the undercurrent of disaster.
Is it possible to love and be loved while whoring?
On more dramatic, by no means characteristic, days like today, I wonder if I'll end like Zola's stigmatizing portrait of the prostitute Nana, diseased, French and unloved. I don't know which fate is worse ... In the meantime, I'll try to answer the unanswerable question, is it possible? by patching up the fist-sized hole in the drywall and sweeping the glass shards off the floors. Every dysfunctional, melodramatic and, of course, normal relationship needs its drywaller, I say, the partner who's left alone, sweeping up the dust we inevitably kick up, punch up, in our all-too-human "love."
*I called the Police Dept., but it was my friend M— who really saved me, my house mate, who came home that night and surveyed the damage and tried to force my flailing partner out the door—"Get Out! Get OUT!" He left, however, only when the officers arrived. No charges were pressed..
Read more from Will Rockwell at Sex!Work?
Saturday, July 19, 2008
At the cusp of our teenage years, we discussed (in whispered voices) extravagant plots for escape. When the time was right, we’d run away together; no jobs, no savings, no regrets. Many years later, when that time finally came, we had long since gone our separate ways. I had left the suburbs of Pennsylvania to pursue what I hoped would be a fruitful academic career. He was a college dropout, pursuing a series of dead end jobs in what could best be described as a dead end town (the type of town that chews you up, spits you out, and leaves no survivors if you stick around too long). When pitted against the often harsh reality of circumstance, our small-town dreams seemed like childish delusions of grandeur.
It was no miracle, but a phenomenal leap of faith, that brought him back to my side. We aren’t children anymore, but the life we’ve begun to create for ourselves looks remarkably similar to our silly adolescent schemes.
He brings in a server’s wage at a small cafe with peaceable (but notoriously stingy) patrons. We pay rent, we cover bills, and we treat ourselves to a nice meal out here and there. I embrace a future of simple living, but as I prepare to enter my final year of college, I’m continually struck by the fact that even a “living wage” is barely enough to keep one’s head afloat.
Sex work has long been a point of conflict for me. On one hand, I am thankful, because I approach sex work from a place of privilege. By turning tricks to pay my way through college, the stakes are very different than if I were turning tricks to feed a family. I’ve turned to sex work not as a means to survive, but as a means to craft a more dynamic life for myself and my partner. It is true that love heals, but cohabitation has taught me that the financial humdrum of everyday life can really hurt.
My decision to more actively pursue sex work currently exists in a state of limbo. When I ask my partner to share his concerns honestly and without hesitation, the answer is always the same - “I want you to do what makes you happy.” While I honor his selflessness, I can’t bring myself to accept this sentiment. I spent too many years floundering in an attempt to discover what truly brought me happiness. My partner challenges me, humbles me, lifts me up, and enriches my life in a way I’d once believed only existed in dreams. When I chose to be with him, I willingly accepted that I was now one variable in a new equation.
Can I truly be happy if I sense my decision breeds discontent in my relationship? Though my partner claims to want only what will bring me happiness, will he change his mind when I return home long after he’s gone to bed? When I return home with the scent of another man’s cologne lingering on my clothing? Will he tell me how he really feels when I bring home more money in one evening than he makes in a week?
And how does this make me feel? Shouldn’t I be toiling by his side, working for a pittance to honor the American Dream? Shouldn’t I be leaving for work the minute he arrives home, so we can fall into bed, cranky and exhausted, at the end of a very long day?
I love my partner, and it is this love that has left me confused and uncertain। The financial security I’ve gained in a short period of time has allowed me that much more freedom, but at what cost? Though he doesn’t say it, I can see him cringe at the thought of touching me after I’ve been touched by countless others। I’ve tried to convince myself that my personal sanctity cannot be determined by how many men I fuck and for what price, but when I find myself unable to share the “whole” truth with my partner, I realize I’ve still got a ways to go.
by Bettina Faye,
check out her blog:
I Paid for College