Happy 3rd Birthday, Bitches: A Letter from the Editor

To my insightful, curious, and powerful readers,

It feels like a lifetime from when a dozen of us gathered in my college apartment taking notes on how to create a masterful print zine. With more knocks on the door, and the room beginning to crowd, Bitchtopia the webzine was born. I feel a strong kind of cutesy, proud, unabashed love for the art-baby we’ve curated within these digital walls.

Our first year, I was graduating college and looking for some real meaning. I deeply related to Sylvia Plath, feeling like the weight of this misogynist, patriarchal world was crushing me. I needed this webzine to feel strong and meaningful. Our second year, I was still finding my place, but traveled around the country looking. We connected with those around the globe and built a worldwide base of talent in the process. Now in our third year, I’ve spent the whole year in once place (Pittsburgh, PA,) have a big girl job, and have worked on applying some real-world feminist politics to my grandeur thoughts, and we have a truly diverse team that I am proud to share that with. Our lens is stronger than it’s ever been.

As we embark on our fourth year of publication, our focus is shifting to something much larger than just ‘spreading the word.’ We are a hub of education and experience, and my goal is to hold a spotlight on that. We’ve added education for our regular contributors so that they can help educate our community. We are all taking a step forward together. We’re all looking to hold up that Plath-level patriarchal-weight on our shoulders. We’re plugging in and listening to the voices around us that need to be heard. We’re forming our own opinions and knowing when it’s time to slow our role and get back to the basics. This year we will focus on building a better foundation. We have so much more to learn and so much more to teach, and it’s important to me that we share this platform of education with you.

Thank you to the team who started it all: Big shout outs to Lee Anna Fitzgerald, who created our original graphics for 3 years and is the best artist I’ve ever met, Jordan Doyle for writing masterful prose and sketching some stellar designs, Myll Felder for editing with joy, Carly S for helping me go outside and experience life as a VIP and remaining a beautiful artist and a truly life-long friend, KC Orcutt for launching grand ideas and offering some higher-level anecdotes, Jasmine Robinson for continuing to learn and being dedicated to a specific voice since we’ve started publishing, and Ariela Aisa for being out fierce out in the field and powerful within poetry. There are so many more who have been with us in some capacity since day one and truly inspire me to keep this energy alive.

Thank you to our current editing team. To Noelle Dommasch, who held it down as a reliable editor and my favorite go-to and who will no doubt be a bright light for us as she continues to assist our contributors in growing from thinkers to do-ers. To Tatiana Tenreyro, who astonishes me with the amount of talent that goes from her mind to viral writing sensation and who continues to offer true passion for the written word and feminist commentary. To India Rose Kushner, who came at a time where we really needed a helping hand and hit it out of the park with insight and assistance. I’m certain our team will flourish in our fourth year of publishing.

Thank you to our social butterflies. To Candy Romero, who has built an amazing social team who and whose love for our contributes shines brighter than the sun. To Emily Taylor, who keeps our Facebook rolling and is there in a flash. To Miranda Nathanson, who has our instagram looking polished and important.

Thank you to our ever growing, ever changing team of fabulous contributors. From the I-just-wanted-to-send-this-poem-alongs to the dedicated bi-weekly artist, you are our inspiration. Watching people grow from 200-word “best of” lists to writing 1000+ word think pieces, to contributing to printed publications, you astound me. It is with your eagerness to learn, share, create, and educate that we can do what we do.

I urge readers to help us continue to publish upcoming writers and artists by purchasing some merch from us. This helps keep our site alive and our contributors compensated with education and spreads the words of our work. I also encourage those who have considered writing articles, taking photos, or painting a canvas to do so and send us the results!

Here are a few of my favorite pieces of art we’ve published over the last year:

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