Thursday, July 17, 2003

Save this Mag!

Bitch Magazine is on the edge and they need subscribers to save the pub. Lisa Jervis, publisher, has sent out an email appeal. I'm going to post it here. Please pass it on and subscribe.

Dear friends--

As many of you know, Bitch has always functioned on a shoestring budget, especially in the spreading-the-word department. Well, our mid-year financial statements show that the shoestring has gotten even stringier of late. We're falling pretty short of our projected magazine sales for the year, and to ensure that there's a Bitch next year and for many years to come, we need your help now. To put it bluntly, we need more subscribers. About 3,000 more.

Here's why subscriptions are so crucial to our financial health: When people buy Bitch at a bookstore, we eventually (four to five months later) get between $1.77 and $1.98 of the $4.95 plus tax that it costs. When people subscribe, they pay only $3.75 per issue (better for them), and we get all of the money right away (better for us).

A lot of people think that buying Bitch on the newsstand supports us just as much as subscribing. Some even think it's more helpful because it convinces bookstores that Bitch is worth carrying. But the bottom line is that Bitch is much better off having you as a subscriber than as a newsstand buyer. (Of course we'd rather have people buying it in the bookstore than not buying it at all, but I promise that stores will continue to stock the magazine, and new newsstand buyers will always come along.)

And then there are all those folks out there who say, "Oh, yeah, Bitch, I've thumbed through that in the bookstore/been to the website/read a friend's copy, and I always meant to subscribe." Now is the time to get all of these people to actually sign up!

Here's what you can do to help:

-If you are not a subscriber right now, become one today. Go to, call us toll-free at 877-21-BITCH, or send a check for $15 to Bitch, 1611 Telegraph Ave Ste. 515, Oakland CA 94612.

-Buy gifts for your friends and family. Multiple subscriptions are even cheaper: $15 for the first and $12 for each additional. See info above, and please note: If you are ordering online, the discount for multiple subscriptions will not show up automatically. Write a note in the comments field about it (along with the other addresses, of course) and we will manually adjust the price.

-Pass this message along. This e-mail is going out to about 700 or so people. To meet our goal, every one of you would need to buy 4.3 subscriptions--or we would collectively need to reach out to a whole bunch more than 700 of Bitch's closest friends. So please send this to anyone you know who likes the magazine or who you think would like the magazine. Help us get the word out!

-Tell people about Bitch. Read it on public transportation. Leave a copy in places where people will discover it (your local coffee house, your college's student center, the waiting room at your friendly women's health clinic, etc.). If you want to take part in a more formal effort to do this, e-mail publicity director Marisa Meltzer at and tell her you're interested in helping to promote the magazine in your area.

-Buy a t-shirt, too. We have a bunch of styles now and they're super-cute. If you're an exhibitionist, we also have very happenin' underwear for sale. (Pictures and descriptions are at

-Pester your local library to buy a subscription (they really do listen to patron requests).

-Donate a subscription to your local campus women's center, community resource center, or the like.

Anything you can do to get us further toward the goal of 3,000 subscriptions will help Bitch be strong and healthy!

With gratitude,



Lisa Jervis

Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture


1611 Telegraph Avenue, Suite 515

Oakland, California 94612


Monday, July 07, 2003

Not Raymond

I posted earlier about E. Lynn Harris' new book. It's out tomorrow. Here's a NYTimes story on him and the book.

More Books

Walter Mosley's latest, Fear Itself, is now out. It's the second Fearless Jones novel.

Related: I'm pretty sure I heard that one of the cable networks is going to produce a series of mysteries based on the Easy Rawlins novels, also by Walter Mosley. But now I can't find the reference. Anybody have a clue?

Saturday, July 05, 2003

Can't Get Enough

Barry White died yesterday. He was 58.

Liberty and Truth

CSMonitor had an excellent story this week about the truth about our founding fathers and slavery. Too often we gravitate toward a simple, easy version of our history. And we're told it's unpatriotic to think otherwise. That's lazy thinking and a disservice to our public history. And for me, that makes all our contemporary patriotic moments hard to swallow. I love being an American and I know that it has never been the kind of all-welcoming place we're taught it was from the beginning. It still isn't.

Book Anticipation

E. Lynn Harris's own invisible life will be revealed this week when his memoir, What Becomes of the Brokenhearted, hits shelves. I've read all his novels and often wondered how much of the tales are based on his own life. Now I can't wait to find out. I'm also curious about his style in the memoir and whether it will be as readable as the novels. They are very much popcorn reading - fun and light and easy to turn one page after another.