July 18, 2019
Dear Sinister Wisdom Sisters,
It’s almost here! The Sinister Wisdom 2020 Calendar is prepped, proofed, and off to the printer this week.
In 2019, the calendar featured 12 of the most gorgeous issue covers of Sinister Wisdom’s 43 years of publishing. The covers told a story about Sinister Wisdom, our readers, the community we continue to build, and our shared commitment to lesbian words and art—and the response to Sinister Wisdom’s first-ever calendar was overwhelming. We received letters of appreciation from longtime subscribers as well as lesbians new to the journal. Thank you for your support and encouragement!
Sara Gregory, our calendar curator, sent out an open call for the 2020 calendar asking for the best visual art lesbians have to offer. In under three months, Sara received over one hundred submissions including photography, collage, digital art, illustration, paintings, and everything in between. This means every piece featured in the 2020 calendar is new to you and our community! Think vibrant, bold, sexy lesbian and queer art—enough to get you through 2020.
The calendar gives home to the most talented lesbian and queer artists including:
Gabriella ggggrimes, artistfromberlin, Art Twink, Salome Grasland, Lisa Rose, shutterdykes, Amalia Russiello, Vivian Pantoja Ortega, Mi Ok Song Bruining, Snousha Glaude, La Fuega Ilustra, roman pace, Sarah Jane Hardt, Nikki E. Lewis, Editha “Aster” V. Delgado, Sudie Rakusin, and Nancy E. Lake.
Support Sinister Wisdom and our shared lesbian community. You can preview the cover of the calendar here. It is gorgeous!
Pre-order your calendar before August 15th for free shipping and handling!
Order 1 calendar for $15; or get our best deal at 5 calendars/$75.00 (includes shipping and handling even after August 15th!)
New Sinister Wisdom Back Issues Collection: Caring & Healing!
If it is summer, we are reading the archives at Sinister Wisdom. One of the summer interns has put together a new back issues collection on the theme, Caring & Healing.
This special collection of three back issues issues displays the maltreatment of the lesbian body in psychiatric and mental health institutions, and lesbians' creative responses to these experiences as expressed in the pages of Sinister Wisdom over the past twenty-five years. The Caring & Healing Collection gathers three issues with great writing and thinking by lesbians that continues to be relevant for our time. These issues each connect to the concept of “image” and will thus explore what lesbian and lesbianism are to a varied group of creatives, ultimately presenting the question of what a lesbian body is and could be. Various perspectives are shown and probe at how the environment and the world around them influence their identity and experience.
Sinister Wisdom 36: Surviving Psychiatric Abuse/Creating Emotional Well-Being provides through its creation a collection of narratives from women who have suffered psychiatric assault in both mental institutions and psychiatric therapy. Many times, these abusive situations result in lesbians asking themselves certain questions such as, was my behavior appropriate? or am I actually crazy? These questions are demeaning and dehumanize lesbian identities and bodies, affecting the nature of healing and our values in lesbian communities. Besides addressing the negative experiences that lesbians have endured for decades, Sinister Wisdom 36: Surviving Psychiatric Abuse/Creating Emotional Well-Being also addresses controlling our own reality and urges that we maintain our communities healthy and strong without the addition of a heterosexual therapist or "professionalized" lesbian. The narratives shared in the issue are emotionally driven while discussing the culture around therapism critically.
Sinister Wisdom 50: Not the Ethics Issue is an issue that explores how ethics, although deemed crucial and important to maintain, protect and grow the lesbian community, is not a commonly voiced discussion. Instead, any debate surrounding ethics and ethical behavior is deemed dull, boring and disinteresting--only for "academic" lesbians. Looking at oneself and asking, "when have I ever been unethical?" "How can I change my behavior to be an ethical lesbian?" is difficult and has been overlooked by many. Sinister Wisdom 50: Not the Ethics Issue calls for lesbians to be conscious of who they are and what they are involved in.
Sinister Wisdom 49: Lesbian Resistance dives into the complexity of lesbian bodies and how various types of lesbians explore and define their own identities. Everything lesbians are: their thoughts, emotions, physical bodies, political views, spirituality, and sex, are facets that (typically) men and heterosexual women feel entitled to either own, profit off of, or attack. This notion causes lesbians to at times forget what their bodies consist of and possibly even dilute or minimize their identities in certain spaces. Lesbian Resistance works to bring that to attention and call upon lesbians to continue to exist and be aware of their existence. This call is for all lesbians, especially lesbians of color. They should acknowledge and remember that their identities exist in a non-white way and should not be whitewashed, but that we are all ultimately part of what makes a lesbian body, a lesbian body. In the lesbian community, there is no lesser or greater lesbian and the acceptance of this will result in the growth of our resistance and revolution.
Sinister Wisdom is offering the package at three rates with our usual sliding scale: $4.00 which covers the cost of postage only, $10.00 which covers postage and a small contribution to Sinister Wisdom to help us keep doing our work, $15 is for womyn who can give a little more to Sinister Wisdom and cover the cost of the issues and postage. Make your selection and we will post these issues to you without delay. Order a set for you--and a set to share with a friend. We need lesbian words and ideas now more than ever to resist Trump and this era of US politics.
Notes for a Revolution--A Woman's Journal Your Copy is Waiting!
Looking for a summer journal? Need a nifty plastic coil bound blank book for list making, journaling, or gifting to friends? Sinister Wisdom has you covered. Notes for a Revolution--A Woman's Journal has arrived in our world headquarters in Florida and we are shipping it out to orderers with love and care. If you pre-ordered, your copy is in the mail and you should have it. There are still plenty of copies in our offices and we are itching to send them out. So order yours today and gaze at the gorgeous cover below!
A Few Copies of Sinister Wisdom 113 Still Available! Order Quickly!
Sinister Wisdom 113: Radical Muses is a collection of poetry, prose, and artwork by lesbians from all over the globe. Inside the pages beyond this beautiful cover art by Peruvian artist La Fuega Ilustra, you’ll be able to read new works by Andrea Assaf, Tara Shea Burke, Cheryl Clarke, Marina Chirkova, Estela González, Barbara Haas, Nancy E. Lake, Vi Khi Nao, and H. Ní Aódagaín to name just a small handful! Snap up your copy today--before we run out!
Calls for Submissions!
Volunteer editors are eagerly reading submissions from writers, artists, and other creative folks in response to our calls for submissions, all listed here. Send along your work so that you can appear in the pages of Sinister Wisdom! Also, Sinister Wisdom is ALWAYS open for writing and art submissions, so you can always submit your work through our general calls. We look forward to reading and responding to you work!
Sinister Wisdom Out and About This Summer and Fall
Sinister Wisdom volunteers and friends will be gathering at three events over the next few months. Mark your calendars and join us!
OutWrite - The LGBTQ literary festival sponsored by the DC LGBTQ Community Center happens every year the first weekend in August. This year, Sinister Wisdom Facebook maven and volunteer extraordinaire, Talia Sieff will be operating the table on Saturday, 3 August 2019 at OutWrite at the DC LGBTQ Community Center. Come to the Center and say hi to Talia! There are also rumors that co-editor of Notes for a Revolution, Kathleen DeBold, will be in attendance as well! Join us for the fun!
Rainbow Book Fair, New York City, Saturday, October 12, 2019, 12noon until 6 p.m. The Rainbow Book Fair is always an extraordinary event in New York and Sinister Wisdom will be there with a table filled with issues of the journal. Talia will again operate the table with guest appearances by Cheryl Clarke, Red Washburn, and many others. Join us in New York to learn more about the amazing things Sinister Wisdom is doing.
Finally, on Thursday, 14 November 2019 from 6 p.m. until 7:30 there will be a special event celebrating Sinister Wisdom at the San Francisco Public Library. More details are coming, but mark your calendars now!
Support Sinister Wisdom as She Celebrates her 43rd Birthday!
Forty-three years ago, on July 4th, 1976, Harriet Desmoines and Catherine Nicholson celebrated the birth of Sinister Wisdom as a new lesbian-feminist journal in the world. It was revolutionary--and continues to be today. This year, Sinister Wisdom has published a number of amazing issues - and special projects like the Notes for a Revolution blank book - and I have more issues planned for the next year. We can only continue to do the work of Sinister Wisdom with the support of subscribers and donors like you. It would be swell if you would take a moment to initiate a subscription to Sinister Wisdom at the website, renew your subscription if it is up for renewal, or, if you are able, make a gift to support Sinister Wisdom. Especially valuable to the journal is the support of monthly sustainers, women who make a monthly gift to support the journal and maintain their subscription. Your gift makes a difference. Thank you for considering how you can invest in Sinister Wisdom and lesbian literature, art, and imagination.
As always, share your thoughts with me about Sinister Wisdom. Think about how YOU can contribute to our continued work publishing, celebrating, and promoting lesbian literary arts, and join us in the revolution at hand.
With your support, we hope to release Sinister Wisdom issues for years to come.
Julie R. Enszer, PhD
Editor and Publisher, Sinister Wisdom
PS Don't forget to order the Sinister Wisdom 2020 calendar! Thank you!