"If I were to do anything differently, I would believe in myself more in my 20s than I did. Maybe it’s part of being in your 20s. Maybe it was the fact that I’m female — I worked with a lot of women, but it was not lost on me that the most powerful people in publishing tend to be guys. The writers who were respected the most at EW were the dudes. Sometimes I felt like I was a bit of an impostor, because I was surrounded by people who went to Harvard or Princeton, and had these privileges I didn’t have, and who seemed to have an innate [...]
New Yorkers! What are you doing tonight? Wrong, your West Wing marathon is canceled: come listen to smart women talk about "The Age of Ladyblogs, or, How Women’s Websites Are Shaping The Cultural Conversation" at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe at 7 p.m., in honor of the release of the excellent Book of Jezebel. Edith is on the panel, along with Jezebel's Anna Holmes and Jessica Coen and Feministing's Samhita Mukhopadhyay and a lot of others you can read about here. (And please say hi if you happen to see me lurking.) [Housing Works]
For the New Yorker's Page-Turner blog, Anna Holmes studies the scriptures of the Fictional Nerd Girl Holy Trinity: Lisa Simpson, Scout Finch, and Harriet the Spy.
Both Fitzhugh and Lee’s heroines are uninterested in, and occasionally contemptuous of, heterosexual coupling. (You can’t blame them: there are few, if any, functional romantic relationships in either book.) …Though Scout’s closest male companion is her older brother, Jem, she and her best friend, the towheaded Charles Baker (Dill) Harris, briefly conduct half-hearted, playful attempts to get engaged. “Dill had asked me earlier in the summer to marry him, then he promptly forgot about it,” Scout explains. “He staked me [...]
"The sexual narratives we absorb in youth are formidable, formative": What's Your All-Time Most Erotic Book?
At the New York Times, two great writers answer a great question. Anna Holmes picks Forever, the Judy Blume book narrated by curious, thoughtful 17-year-old Katherine, that ruined the name Ralph for me… forever:
For those of us who came of age in the AIDS-anxious, post-second-wave 1980s, extracurricular education about human sexuality focused on the female form: the nudie magazines and racy college comedies that introduced us to sex were populated by the voluminous breasts and carefully groomed pubic mounds of a million heterosexual male fantasies; young women were the observed, not the observers. Blume took this sense of curiosity and desire, this male gaze, and upended [...]
The Book of Jezebel is "An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Lady Things" edited by Jezebel creator and former editor Anna Holmes that includes funny-to-serious entries ranging from giggle (Tee-hee) to Wolf, Naomi. Published in October, it's a work of art, a humor book, a compendium of writing from an array of notable names, and an excellent guide to important topics of our time.
It's also a book that came from a blog, and not just any blog, but the blog that set the stage for sites like The Hairpin to emerge and implement and experiment with their own styles, voices, and content. Jezebel was the first to dedicate itself to breaking new ground in writing for women, to [...]