Posts Tagged ‘butch identity’

Gender, Poetry, and Smut: Current Recommended Reads

December 17, 2013  |  reviews  |  4 Comments

I have stacks of books on my lists to tell y’all about, and so many other things to write to you about that I often don’t update you with what I’m reading. But, I know some of y’all are book nerds, so here ya go. Some beginnings of my attempt to get through this backlog.

And hey, who knows, maybe it’ll be a perfect last-minute dark-time-of-the-year holiday gift for somebody.

bk-butch bk-troubling bk-excluded

Butch Geography by Stacey Waite (Tupelo Press). A poetry collection … I read the review over on Lambda Literary and ran out to snag my own copy. It really is as beautiful as the review says. Waite writes with precise language and beautiful turns of phrase and enjambment about gender, navigating the world as a masculine of center person, and love. If you’re into gender and butch things and poetic words, this is for you.

Troubling the Line: Trans & Genderqueer Poetics TC Tolbert & Tim Trace Peterson (Nightboat Press). This anthology includes a wide range of poets, some examples of their work, and some statements (“poetics”) of their purpose and intentions behind their poetry. I find those essays in particular so compelling. The whole thing strikes me as very academic, so there is a lot of theory and big, fancy words that I feel like I could squint and strain to understand but I just kind of don’t bother (unless, you know, I really want to), but even so, I love reading the words and seeing two of my favorite genres—genderqueer theory and poetry—come together. Fascinating—and, as far as I know, the only book of its kind.

Poets include Samuel Ace, Julian Talamantez Brolaski, Micha Cardenas, kari edwards, Duriel Harris, Joy Ladin, Dawn Lundy Martin, Eileen Myles, Trish Salah, Max Wolf Valerio, John Wieners, Kit Yan, and more.

Excluded: Making Feminist and Queer Movements More Inclusive By Julia Serano (Seal Press). I’ve said for years that I consider Serano’s first book, Whipping Girl, required reading, and this, her sophomore publication, is likewise just as essential. Feminist and queer movements can be so exclusive, can reproduce all sorts of misogyny, racism, transphobia, transmisogyny, classism, and dozens more -isms—I have experienced and witnessed so much of that first-hand, and it frustrates me, as someone who is deeply committed to feminist and queer movements. And yet … sometimes I have no idea what to do about it. Serano puts forth all kinds of theories and concepts that I really like—the first one that comes to mind is explaining feminism through the concept of double standards. Keep up with Serano through her blog, where she’s got information about book signings and readings, and where she’s been posting excerpts and definitions of terms she coined or is using extensively in this book. It’ll give you a good sense of the tone and concepts included in Excluded (see what I did there? Ha ha!).

bk-bbe14 ble14

Best Bondage Erotica 2014 edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel (Cleis Press). Oh! It looks like this is technically released January 1st, though I did just see that Rachel received her box of copies to send out to Amazon reviewers (get in touch with her and get a copy of the book in exchange for writing it up on Amazon!). I’m not sure what the last Best Bondage Erotica collection was that I read … maybe I haven’t read any of them? I’ll be honest, I’m not very into bondage—but that’s partly why I absolutely loved Laura Antoniou’s introduction to this book, which basically said, “Uh, I’m not that into bondage.” Hah! Cracked me up, and also, I identify with that. “I’m much more into power,” Antoniou writes. Yeah, me too. And yet … and yet. She goes on to explain the value of these stories, and I admit they kept me turning pages. I particularly loved Kathleen Delaney-Adams story “Tart Cherry,” but that’s because I am a sucker for a kinky femme bottom who knows what she wants. Still, it’s beautifully written and sweet and dirty, and it stood out.

Best Lesbian Erotica 2014, edited by Kathleen Warnock (Cleis Press). There was a bit of news about this year’s BLE collection, and while I have a lot of questions and confusion and thoughts from that article, I don’t really need to go into that here. I mean, I am kind of the lesbian erotica cheerleader (despite having complicated relationships with both the words “lesbian” and “erotica”). But still, I come back to BLE year after year, I submit my stories, and I always, always look forward to reading it. This year, the story I submitted is the kick-off piece, the first one in the book (thrilling!), and I was lucky enough to be part of the release party here in San Francisco and hear almost ten of the stories read aloud. I think this year’s is a good collection, well-written and well collected, though there aren’t very many stories in here that I’ll be going back to for jerk-off material, mostly because they aren’t Daddy/girl or heavy BDSM based (which tends to be what I seek out these days—I know, SHOCKER). Still, Cheryl Dunye & Sarah Schulman’s script for the full length campy porn Mommy is Coming is included, and that’s fascinating.

Actually, speaking of Mommy is Coming, here’s the trailer:

Um yeah. Definitely recommend that one.

Aaaand that concludes this current book round-up! What have you been reading lately? Anything good to recommend?

The Great Reader Mini-Interview, part two

October 17, 2013  |  miscellany  |  1 Comment

What is your relationship to sugarbutch.net and Sinclair?

My favorite part is probably the porn. My least favorite is probably the personal relationship stuff; it’s interesting but also cringeworthy and full of secondhand embarrassment, at least for me, and makes me shout “WHY ARE YOU DOING THAT” at the screen a lot.

—jay, http://www.twitter.com/jswaggerbk

I most enjoy the smart and progressive gender theory. I love the ways Sinclair moves the conversation forward, and remains open to all ways of knowing. I also enjoy the erotica, a lot. I would also be interested in an exploration of the “butch bottom” — my partner would probably fall into that category, and I’m interested in teasing out the less obvious relationships between gender and power there.

—rachel, http://www.bellybuttongazing.blogspot.com

I wish you would do more of exactly what it is that you are doing. I know that some of your readers have been sending you messages saying that they miss Kristen, or that they wish you would do more of this or more of that. But all I wish is that you keep writing what you want to write. It’s that which shows me your true colours, and its that which is real. SO very real about you that keeps me grounded in my shoes, in my reality, in my concepts of what Butch is. Of what Queer is. Of what Love is and what power is. The fact that you have remained true to yourself. The fact that you have listened to your heart, despite the whispers and the judgements; you are still moving in YOUR direction, and that’s fucking hot. That’s power, that’s taking the time that you have on this planet and making the most of it by not wasting it on doing what others want you to do. You follow your heart, and that, to me, is truth.

You and I went through a breakup at the same time. I found that your silence matched my silence and i never once questioned it. When you finally found words again I felt them with you. and I found myself speaking to you through the screen consoling, and sharing my experiences. I wanted to tell you that we would be ok. That even though things ended perhaps under different circumstances, we were feeling the same pain, the same stages of denial and rejection and loss, and I felt like you brought me home a lot. But I also felt like I wanted to bring you home with me too. It was therapeutic and it helped me out a lot.

—EK, http://instagram.com/ek_bo

What advice would you give your younger self about sex, gender, or relationships?

It’s ok to be gay, go to church, believe in God, and live in the South all at the same time! I’ve been attracted to women since I was 4 years old. My first two kisses were girls! In South East Texas however, being gay isn’t even an option. I just thought I could easily appreciate another woman’s beauty. No one speaks about being gay. Thank you for putting out such straight forward information. I love that there is no beating around the bush on your site. Thank you for being a proud, intelligent, gay woman and not hiding it.

—Julie May Richardson, http://instagram.com/julie321

I would tell my younger self to stop worrying about what everyone else is going to think, and say, and whisper behind your back and to just go flirt with girls already.

—Sara, http://somekindofsexy.tumblr.com

What one resource has had the most impact on you, and why?

I can’t narrow done one source but I can give you a genre: books. I read everything I can get my hands on. Right now I’m interested in the Invisible Femme problem. Since I happen to be one.

—Michelle

Probably reading Butch is A Noun, S. Bear Bergman. As stupid as it sounds, I didn’t really ‘get’ that there were other people that felt like me. But if I can slide another thing in, it’s been kind of amazing to find the web presence of butches, dappers, and all the other words that confuse me. Tumblrs, blogs, twitter accounts; it’s illuminating to think that I’m not weird. Finding a community of similar folks has actually really helped with my confidence.

—Zoe, http://dapperirishdyke.wordpress.com/

Anything else to add?

Femmes have been my salvation. There have been 2 femmes who made me whole again. After being abused by my mother for years about my gender, I shut down. hiding even inside the lesbian community. These femmes brought me out with their wisdom and sight, their ability to see me and respond to me. I was lesbian for a long time but never fully me until I embraced and lived my Butch life.

— sumner, https://twitter.com/Butchkind

Ask Mr. Sexsmith Anything: What words compliment a butch lover?

August 29, 2013  |  advice  |  5 Comments

coaching-buttonDear Mr. Sexsmith,

My butch lover refers to me as gorgeous, luscious, beautiful… [but] I just don’t think those kind of descriptive words work for her. What would you suggest? Thanks!

— Sho

Dear Sho,

My personal favorites?

Handsome.
Strong.
Sexy.
Gorgeous.
Hunky.
Powerful.

Some more ideas?

Striking. Charming. Dazzling. Gentleman. Stud(ly). Rough. Tough. Hero(ic). Attractive. Big.

And, do delve a little deeper:

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with calling someone masculine gorgeous or beautiful or any of those words. (I don’t know if I’d use “luscious” … not sure what it is exactly, maybe it implies curviness to me, and it wouldn’t resonate if someone used that for me. But I can think of some very luscious butches who would probably like that word used to describe them, so don’t take my preference as the norm.) I think we separate complimentary words by gender, and while many people have certain resonances with certain words regardless of their gender identity—and I think those should be respected, and it doesn’t really matter if the words someone likes happen to all fall in one generally gendered category or not—I think it’s good to take a look at why some of them resonate over others, and whether that’s personal preference or cultural habit.

I remember reading somewhere that “men want to be powerful, women want to be beautiful,” and while I think there’s some heteronormative/patriarchal/misogynistic deconstruction that should probably happen around that idea, I also think it is largely true and reproduced in this culture. And, I think we tend to compliment along those lines when we’re talking about complimenting someone feminine verses complimenting someone masculine. So first of all, women are powerful and beautiful, men are beautiful and powerful, genderqueer and trans and butch and femme folks are powerful and beautiful, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being both. In fact, I think it’s a radical act a) to recognize that our gender roles operate by trying to keep men striving for power and women striving for beauty, which reinforces the kyriarchy, and b) to intentionally break those gender roles by complimenting people for the incredible, sparkly, dazzling things that we notice them doing, by which we are touched and changed.

I think this topic of complimentary words warrants a fascinating conversation between partners. E.g., “Hey, when I use words like attractive and sexy and beautiful when I describe you, do you like that? What kinds of words do you like to be called? Are there words that I call you that sometimes bug you? Isn’t it interesting that certain words are reserved for femininity and others for masculinity? Would it feel strange if I called you pretty/strong/luscious/my hero?”

Brainstorm. Make a list. Do some google searches. Ask around to your friends next time you’re out and about and see what kind of lists they make of compliments for their girlfriends/boifriends/partners. Go back to your partner and try out some of those words, see what the response is. Maybe they just don’t like their body to be talked about or commented upon, even if you are in awe of their gorgeousness and want to tell them so every day. Maybe they like certain words to be used and they just don’t know why, but it makes more sense and resonates deeper. That’s okay. Listen to each other.

I like to use words that have the intended effect, and if I intend one thing and they take it another way, it isn’t actually effective, even if I intend it to be so. And regardless of gender identity, I like to call people what they want to be called.

Would y’all like to weigh in on other complimentary words for butches (or for anyone, for that matter)? What words do you call your butch lover? What words have you found that butches like to be called? What compliments stick?

Review: Jam Body Tank, aka Compression Tank, aka Faux-Binder

August 21, 2013  |  on butches, reviews  |  5 Comments

jamrws01-tank_1Rounderwear contacted me offering products for review, and while their bubble-butt gay boy underwear is pretty cute, I wasn’t sure it was for me exactly. Then, the Body Tank sections caught my eye, and I requested to take a look at the Jam Body Tank.

Glad I did. I’ve worn it frequently since it arrived.

I really don’t like full-on compression shirts. They make it hard for me to breathe. They knock the wind outta me after walking a block or two, or up one flight of stairs. They shove my chest up into my collarbone and sometimes make me feel like my neck isn’t free enough, like I’m suffocating. They make my stomach feel all weird (and some other digestion things you probably don’t want to know about). I don’t like the feeling of wearing one.

I sure do like how my silhouette looks when I do, however.

So, I picked up a “muscle shirt” a while ago, which is basically a regular tee shirt on top and then an elastic band that covers the stomach, and I wear that over my usual binder (aka sports bra—my current pick being Enell) when I want to have a smoother silhouette, or when I want to wear a button-down. It’s not as intense as my compression shirt, but it still makes a difference.

This Jam Body Tank is a lot like that, except instead of being half-shirt half-elastic, it’s all elastic. It’s a lot more comfortable than a compression shirt, but it’s not quite as effective. It doesn’t create the same straight(er) lines that a compression shirt does, but it does still help, AND I can breathe! Yes!

Here’s the description from the Rounderwear site:

Seamless compression tank that provides back support and definition to the muscles. Its detailed design and construction help pull back the shoulders, straighten the back and slim down the waist.

92% Polyamide Sorbtek 8% Elastane

• Improves shape and posture
• Slims down
• Reduces back pain
• Controls body temperature
• Machine wash

I don’t feel it pulling back the shoulders or straightening my back, but maybe I already have good posture? Kind of doubt it, since I’ve got a long history of shoulder trouble. I also haven’t noticed any sort of “body temperature” control, but maybe it knows something I don’t.

What does seem to be true is that it “provides support” and “improves shape” and “slims down.” Basically, it’s Spanx for men. And butches, and whomever might want to slim down their curves into a more linear shape.

I’m very glad to have something other than that compression shirt to wear to “slim down” my shape and make it a bit more masculine, especially for long conference days like I had this past weekend. Wearing the compression shirt for a whole day (or two or four days in a row) is hard on my body. I’m glad for the chance to review it, I didn’t realize products like these are out there and I’m going to keep an eye out for more like this.

Exploring Gender Through Photos: The new headshots by Meg Allen

May 17, 2013  |  miscellany  |  10 Comments

I had some new headshots taken, with the aim to actually capture some joy and pleasure and fun, instead of someone who has “been through the ringer” and “in the wars”. I’m spending a lot of time thinking about my business and what I’m doing and how I’m representing myself, in no small part thanks to the Catalyst Conference I attended in DC in March and Barbara Carrellas’s Urban Tantra training for sexuality professionals.

BD Swain (who is a butch kinky erotica writer—if you aren’t following her blog, you should be) hooked me up with Meg Allen, whose portraits immediately resonated with me. Meg is also working on a portrait project she’s calling BUTCH which features—wait for it—masculine of center folks.

Working with Meg and talking about photographing butch identity, what makes it different than photographing other gender presentations, how to encourage butches to feel more at home in our bodies through photography, and a dozen other things, made me think about all the other butch portrait projects that have been popping up lately, like BUTCH: Not like the other girls by SD Holman and the Butch/Femme Photo Project by Wendi Kali. I’m starting to put together a panel for the BUTCH Voices conference that is full of photographers of butches and I want to address exactly those questions.

BUTCH Voices call for proposals is open, by the way! Submit art, workshops, lectures, panels, or performance ideas before June 1.

I know for me, having my photograph taken changed significantly after I came to a butch identity. I actually started liking how I looked in photos. I actually kind of recognized myself. I spent some years obsessively taking self-portraits, from 1997 to about 2002, and maintaining personal photo blogs online, and one of the major reasons for that was experimenting with visual representations and markers of gender. After I came to a butch identity that I was pretty solid and comfortable with, somewhere in 2001 or so, I took fewer and fewer self-portraits and felt much more at ease having my photo taken by others. Having professional photos of me taken, starting in about 2006, has continued me on that journey of finding myself through visual representation and continuing to feel comfortable with the way that I look, my gender, and my body.

Which is yet another reason why I started craving new headshots for the summer. I want it to reflect where I am, and how I feel about myself and my work. They needed to be updated.

Here’s about 30 of my favorites from the shoot. I’m still experimenting with which will be my new avatar for Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and for the sidebar and my about pages, so I might pick one and then change it up in a week or so, test some of them out.

If you can’t see the photos, here’s a link to the full set on Flickr.

Here’s the other thing about these photos: they look like me. They don’t really look like “Sinclair,” they don’t look like some persona I’m putting on, they look like me, how I look on a pretty much daily basis, how I look when I’m hanging out with friends or teaching a workshop. Maybe if I would’ve dressed up more that would be different? Maybe it’s the sweater over the polo, too casual for this shoot somehow.

Not that that’s a bad thing, exactly. I am aiming for more integration. The difference between me and my “Sinclair” persona/character gets thinner and thinner. It’s just kind of … odd. Unexpected. Interesting.

What do you think? Which ones are your favorites? Any advice for headshots or representing my work?

“Conversations Build Communities”: BUTCH Voices To Hold 3rd Biennial National Conference in Oakland August 15-18, 2013

March 11, 2013  |  miscellany, on butches  |  No Comments

BUTCH Voices is still looking for volunteers for the Steering Committee, Board, and some sub-committees if you’re interested in helping make the 2013 conference run. It’s great experience and a great way to build and deepen community. Check out the job descriptions and opportunities available.

flyer2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PLEASE FORWARD WIDELY

Contact: Sinclair Sexsmith
Media representative, BUTCH Voices
+1 (917) 475-6316
[email protected]

“Conversations Build Communities”:
BUTCH Voices To Hold 3rd Biennial National Conference in Oakland August 15-18, 2013

February 26, 2013

Oakland, CA – The BUTCH Voices 3rd biennial National Conference will take place in Oakland, CA at the Oakland Marriott City Center August 15-18, 2013. The BUTCH Voices Board and Steering Committee are excited to continue our core initiatives: focusing on community building, social and economic justice, and physical and mental health.

The mission of BUTCH Voices is to enhance and sustain the well-being of all women, female-bodied, and trans-identified individuals who are Masculine of Center.*  We achieve this by providing programs that build community, positive visibility and empower us to advocate for our whole selves inclusive of and beyond our gender identity and sexual orientation. Our community is vast and growing and we have many identifications that resemble what the world knows as our “butchness.” We recognize our diversity as having a foundation rooted in butch heritage. We welcome the on-going development of movements intentionally and critically inclusive of our gender variant community. BUTCH Voices is a social justice organization that is race and gender inclusive, pro-womanist and feminist.

The official conference theme is “Conversations Build Communities,” which is an extension of our off-year regional Community Conversation gatherings. We have had Community Conversations in Boston and San Francisco, and in March in Seattle. There are gatherings in progress for Dallas, New York, Toronto, and others TBA. These community conversations in local cities will continue to encourage the elevation of discussion around these identities leading up to the national conference.

“The conference will be an amazing event for masculine of center folks and our allies to convene nationally and discuss issues relevant to our lives today, share our stories, network, attend workshops, sessions, social events, and performances,” said Board Chair and Founder Joe LeBlanc. “It’s an incredible opportunity to come together and be a part of the larger conversation, and witness the myriad of masculine identities.  It is life changing for so many of us to attend a gathering of this size, and take these conversations, resources, and connections back home to our local communities and beyond.”

A call for workshop presenters, performers, artists, and other contributors for the national conference will be announced soon. The BUTCH Voices Board is still seeking more members for the national conference Steering Committee, which will help produce and oversee the conference. If you’re interested, visit http://www.butchvoices.com/opportunities-available-with-butch-voices/ to view the opportunities available with BUTCH Voices and get in touch.

Subscribe to the BUTCH Voices newsletter online at BUTCHVoices.com to stay informed of the future conference announcements.

Further inquiries can be sent to Sinclair Sexsmith, Media Board Chair, at [email protected]

* Masculine of center (MoC) is a term, coined by B. Cole of the Brown Boi Project, that recognizes the breadth and depth of identity for lesbian/queer/womyn who tilt toward the masculine side of the gender scale and includes a wide range of identities such as butch, stud, aggressive/AG, dom, macha, tomboi, trans-masculine etc.

# # #

Opportunities with the BUTCH Voices Media Team

February 27, 2013  |  essays, on butches  |  No Comments

In addition to teaching workshops and traveling everywhere, one of my other major jobs recently has been working as the Media Chair on the board of BUTCH Voices, gearing up for the 2013 national conference. It’s starting to pick up—we’ve got a lot of stuff going on, and there will just be more between here & the conference.

Most notably, the BUTCH Voices website has a facelift!

Doesn’t it look great? I wish I’d taken a full-screen screenshot of the old website, it looks so different. I’m now the web editor there, and still looking for folks to work with me on the Media Team. I’m really excited about the conference and this is a unique opportunity to work behind the scenes to make it happen, and gain some experience and expertise in the web and media fields.

Media Team (Reports to the Media Chair)

Benefits include: cultivating butch community, discounted entrance into the BUTCH Voices 2013 National Conference in August, service to your community, volunteer time, media experience of all kinds (social media, web content management, print media), working directly with Sinclair, and more!

You should be: masculine of center identified, trans-positive, coming from an anti-oppression framework; have some time to volunteer, self-motivated, able to work on tight deadlines, have a reliable computer & internet access where you can stay in touch at least on a weekly basis.

Tasks include, but aren’t limited to:

  • Responsible for completing tasks relating to the website, social media (Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, etc), newsletter
  • Design components for print and web using BUTCH Voices branding standard colors, fonts, and logos
  • Respond promptly and keep in contact
  • Available for last-minute tasks and able to complete assignments within 24-48 hours
  • Timely and efficient, hard working, able to take direction and ask for clarification, able to work in a team environment digitally from a home office
  • Reliable internet access, computer access; some HTML skills, WordPress, CMS, text editing, Photoshop, and graphic design skills are a plus
  • Keen eye for detail

Interested? Contact me, [email protected], with your resume and a few brief paragraphs about why you’d like the job and what you can offer. I’m excited to get this team going, to practice my management skills, and to make the BUTCH Voices 2013 conference excellent.

Beauty and the BUTCH: BUTCH Voices Benefit in San Francisco

September 1, 2012  |  miscellany, on butches  |  No Comments

Oh, San Francisco.

Why you gotta be so cool? I am having trouble enough keeping our relationship long-distance. And now, this …

I can’t be there this time, but please, please, go for me and have an amazing time.

Beauty and the BUTCH: A 2012 BUTCH Voices Benefit

You are invited to indulge in an evening of deliciously BUTCH revelry… Bask in the decadent sights, bold sounds and the brilliant energy of everything BEAUTIFULLY BUTCH*! The mystique and myth are nothing compared to the raw beauty of butch truth…

Saturday September 15th, 2012
7:00pm – Midnight

at The City of Refuge UCC
1025 Howard Street – SF CA
$5-15 sliding scale, no one turned away for lack of funds

7:00pm – Doors Open
7:30pm – Butch Briefs Part Deux – a Mini Film Festival
8:00pm – Beauty and the Butch Live Performances and Fashion Show
9:00pm – Butch Ball with DJs JacATac, Black and Ryan

FOR ADVANCED TICKETS
RSVP HERE: http://beautyandthebutch.eventbrite.com/

BUTCH ATTIRE defies simple elegance… we have a swagger all our own that many have tried to duplicate but few have achieved

BUTCH ART breathes a magnificently unique masculine
mixture of the sacred and the profane into what is much more than a label… it is an experience

BUTCH MUSIC gives us all permission to dig deep into our spirits and howl our TRUTH, our TENDERNESS, our unabashed BRAVERY and our brash movement without boundaries! Read More

Updates from BUTCH Voices: Events, Open Positions, Call for Bloggers

August 16, 2012  |  miscellany  |  No Comments

So maybe you’ve heard, but I’ve got an exciting (official) announcement: I’m on the board of BUTCH Voices working up to the 2013 National Conference as Media Chair. This is my second board position and I’m really excited to work with this organization. I don’t know if I’ve ever attended a conference as diverse as BUTCH Voices, both in race and in ability and class and culture and perspective and all sorts of other things, and I’m thrilled to be part of the team.

We’ve got a lot of exciting things in the works between now and the 2013 National Conference (which will be in August in Oakland, exact dates TBA). We won’t have Regional Conferences this year like we did in 2011, but we are working on some Community Conversations, which will be gatherings for folks who want to come together and discuss butch and masculine of center identities, and conclude with some sort of party. The first scheduled is in San Francisco on September 15th and more details on that will come soon (the organizers are still looking for folks interested in performing, entertaining, or donating raffle prizes).

We also have some open positions on the board, steering committee, programming committee, and media team, and I’m looking for bloggers who are interested in posting or cross-posting to the BUTCHVoices.com blog. Want to get involved with that? Email me, [email protected]

I’ll also be helping to put on the New York City Community Conversation, so if you’re interested in being involved with that—performing, donating raffle prizes, etc—let me know.

Here’s the whole of the newsletter. Subscribe here and be the first to receive the next newsletter.

    BUTCH Voices Summer 2012 Newsletter

    Greetings, BUTCH Voices attendees, participants, presenters, lovers, allies, sponsors, and more!

    You haven’t heard much from us since the 2011 National Conference in Oakland, but we’re beginning to get our ties out and polish up the wingtips so we can hve some exciting events and productivity between now and our 2013 National Conference.

    In this (new!) BUTCH Voices newsletter, you will find:

  • BUTCH Voices Organization updates
  • Open positions
  • Community Conversations in 2012/2013
  • Call for Contributors: butchvoices.com
  • The 2013 Conference

BUTCH Voices Organization Updates

First, because obviously you’re dying to know, here’s what’s new at BUTCH Voices!

We have a revised board, consisting of:

Joe LeBlanc – Board Chair
Mary Stockton – Finance Chair
Redwolf Painter – Strategic Impact Chair
Sinclair Sexsmith – Media Chair
Adriana Batista – Resource Development Chair

We held our 2012 board retreat in April in Oakland, and in it we solidified our goals for 2012 and 2013, which include adding some organizational structure, getting our media plan going, and working on events for our off-year (more on that later). We are still looking to add a Member At Large to our board, and various other positions to the Steering Committee (more details about our open positions below).

We are also excited to announce that we have a new Advisory Board, which consists of people who have been super supportive and involved in varying capacities with the work here at BUTCH Voices in the past. They are joining us in an official advisory capacity for the organization and our communities at large.

Advisory Board members:
Krys Freeman
Q Ragsdale
Sharon Bridgforth
Rajkumari Neogy
Tobi Hill-Meyer
Jun-Fung Chueh-Mejia
Ryann Holmes
B. Cole
D’Lo

Read their full bios here on the BUTCHVoices.com site.

And of course, we are moving forward with the ultimate goal of organizing the BUTCH Voices National Conference in 2013, which will take place in August in Oakland. We are still solidifying the exact date and location, but you will be the first to know!

Open Positions

The BUTCH Voices Board of Directors are currently looking for volunteers to add to the BUTCH Voices Board, the National Conference Steering Committee and Subcommittees.   If you’re looking to volunteer time on a ongoing basis and want a specific role on the team, we have a few that are open.  Priority will be given to folks identifying with the butch, stud, masculine of center identities, but allies should also feel free to apply.  All positions are unpaid and volunteer based.

Two BUTCH Voices Board positions currently open:  Secretary and Member at Large. Multiple BUTCH Voices National Steering Committee positions currently open, including: Performance Chair and Co-CoordinatorSponsor/Vendor Chair and Co-Coordinator, and Media Coordinator. We are currently also seeking volunteers for a Media Team for communications and online projects, and Programming Committee.

For detailed descriptions of the open positions, and for information about how to send your resume to BUTCH Voices, see http://www.BUTCHVoices.com/opportunities-available-with-butch-voices/

Community Conversations

BUTCH Voices is excited to announce that during our off-year, 2012, we will be holding regional “Community Conversations” in various cities around the United States and Canada to promote connection, elevation of conversation, and community building for masculine of center folks and our allies.

We are aiming to hold Community Conversations possibly in, though not limited to, the following cities: Seattle, San Francisco, New York City, Portland OR, San Diego, Atlanta, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, Oakland, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Vancouver BC, and Toronto. We are currently moving forward with Seattle and New York City in fall 2012, and we will get those dates to you just as soon as we can. We hope other cities will soon follow!

SAN FRANCISCO has already been announced: Save the date! September 15th 2012 will be a Community Conversation and afterparty, Beauty and the BUTCH, featuring entertainment, fashion, and a raffle with many exciting prizes. More details on the BUTCH Voices website.

Topics will be generated by the individual groups who attend, and we expect regional differences to affect which subjects, philosophies, and concerns each group will focus on. We expect 20-50 people attending each Community Conversation gathering, and we hope to encourage conversation, connection, and networking as we gear up for next year’s 2013 BUTCH Voices National Conference. The Community Conversations will also serve as fundraisers for BUTCH Voices, and funds will be split between local organizers to assist their attendance at the National BUTCH Voices conference and with BUTCH Voices National.

If you are interested in being involved in hosting, fundraising, or coordinating a Community Conversation in your city, contact BUTCH Voices outreach at [email protected].

In August 2013, BUTCH Voices will present our third bi-annual national conference located in Oakland, CA, exact dates TBA.

Call for Contributors – BUTCHVoices.com

BUTCH Voices is seeking writers, bloggers, vloggers, photographers, and multi-media generators to contribute to www.butchvoices.com. Posts are ideally 500-750 words, 5 photographs, or one video with short description. Content should include something about masculine of center identity in any capacity, be it promotion for an art project, musings, or calls for contributions or collaborations. Contributions are unpaid but do you will receive a byline, which includes a one-line bio, link to your project, exposure to our thousands of followers, and our gratitude. Content may be cross-posted and do not have to be new, so long as they are relevant to masculine of center identities, adhere to our mission statement, and follow anti-oppression fundamentals. Contact Sinclair, media chair of the Butch Voices board, [email protected] for more information. If you are interested in contributing, send Sinclair one sample works, your one-line bio, and your any relevant links to your work.

The 2013 BUTCH Voices National Conference

… is in progress! We are securing a venue and exact dates in August, 2013, even as you read this. For now, keep it in mind and plan to be in Oakland to join hundreds of masculine of center folks and our allies to continue discussing, connecting, playing, partying, philosophizing, laughing, and crying together.

Thank you for your ongoing support and contributions to BUTCH Voices!

Sincerely,

Joe, Mary, Wolf, Adriana, and Sinclair
The 2013 BUTCH Voices Board

In addition to wanting bloggers for the BUTCH Voices website, I’m also looking for a Media Team that will work under me:

Media Team’s tasks (Reports to the Media Chair)

  • Responsible for completing tasks relating to the website, social media (Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, etc), newsletter
  • Design components for print and web using BUTCH Voices branding standard colors, fonts, and logos
  • Respond promptly and keep in contact
  • Available for last-minute tasks and able to complete assignments within 24-48 hours
  • Timely and efficient, hard working, able to take direction and ask for clarification, able to work in a team environment digitally from a home office
  • Reliable internet access, computer access; some HTML skills, WordPress, CMS, text editing,
    Photoshop, and graphic design skills are a plus.
  • Keen eye for detail

Interested? Want to work with me for a year? Want to learn what I know about running a community website, butch identity, outreach, and communications? Want to take part in forming the 2013 BUTCH Voices National Conference? I’m looking for some committed, smart, flexible folks who are interested in contributing—get in touch with me at [email protected]

I am excited about this trajectory for BUTCH Voices, and thrilled to be part of it.