Prose & Lore is the Red Umbrella Project’s literary journal, which collects memoir stories about sex work in two issues per year (Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer). The stories are original to Prose & Lore, and about 75% of the authors in each issue are previously unpublished. Many of the contributors participate in RedUP’s memoir workshops and drop-in writing sessions. You can buy the new issue here, or pony up for a Prose and Lore subscription here. On Tuesday, July 23rd at 7 pm at the Bureau of General Services, Queer Division (27 Orchard Street in Manhattan) contributors to Prose and Lore will be giving a free reading.
This is an excerpt from contributor Mandy Tz’s piece, “My Almost First Time”, describing her first experience attempting full service sex work after working as a webcam girl. Mandy is a white trans woman who enjoys nothing more than telling a heavily tattooed man begging to worship her that she can’t hear him cause she has “Ace of Spades” blasting from her speakers. She may seem sensitive from her piece but she’s actually an evil, merciless slut devoted to instituting female supremacy. You can contact her for plans of future co-femme world domination at firstname.lastname@example.org.
…I open the attachment on the email. It’s a picture he took of himself by using the mirrored ceiling of an elevator. Oh, wannabe artsy types. But he was cute for a pasty white guy as old as my dad. So I thought, yeah sure why not. I told him I’d love to meet up. He said he could meet on Thursday night and I said I was free too. I didn’t realize until Thursday morning that it was Valentine’s Day. Hmmm, I wondered, should I be suspicious of that?
I hit up one of my girls who had been doing this sorta stuff for a while. “I wouldn’t be worried,” she told me in that tone of confident knowing that she spoke with even when she was clueless, “I’ve had lots of Valentine’s bookings. They feel lonely. Hell, sometimes it means they will pay you more.” Though I do ask for it, I am often wary of taking advice, especially on doing sex work, from cis girls. It is a completely different dynamic and though generally we are expected to be very similar things and to meet certain standards, trans women who detract in any wayfrom those standards are judged much more harshly. My outfit, makeup, legs, hair all have to be flawless, ‘cause if and when my top comes off, my clients aren’t happy to see the tiny little nibs. And this particular girl had, amongst other things, told me she had worked without makeup and had worked in flats, things I didn’t and still don’t think I could get away with. But for some reason I believed her this time. I was desperate to believe this would go smoothly: I had little money, my exgirlfriend was kicking me out of our apartment, and I really wanted to get laid, even if the sex was shitty. I didn’t want sex, I wanted affirmation that I would be okay.