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I am pleased to announce a new editorial team for Harlots Parlour. I have, as many readers know, been hoping to retire, or at least take a back seat for some time. My failing health and other business commitments means that I have less time to devote to developing Harlots, or engaging in as many activist events as I would like to. I have therefore decided to hand much, and eventually hopefully, all of the running of Harlots, into the hands of new editors.
After some discussion, the idea of creating an editorial collective was favoured, alongside creating a private email list where sex workers and allies can discuss ideas and share information and support. A handful of sex workers have already expressed an interest in being involved on this list and it is hoped that this number will grow.
Harlots from the very beginning was about creating a space for sex workers to share their experiences, where sex work, in its many diverse forms could be celebrated. Harlots is not just about happy hookers, but neither is it about sex workers who hate their work, their clients, or who endeavour to make sex work fit into their own narrow political narrative. There exists a space within sex worker activism for sex workers to create a safe space, where all sex workers and allies are made welcome and are allowed to express their ideas and enthusiasm for creating societies in which sex work is respected. With these ideals in mind I hope that everyone will welcome Olive ( follow on twitter @Olivefetish and Madison (follow on twitter @1womandisrobing ) as new editors of Harlots.
Olive studied Museology and Mortuary science, which makes her fascinating just for those subjects alone. She always had a fascination with fetishes and paraphilias and those interests led her into sex work. She has also managed a variety of adult stores and lives in the USA where alongside sex work she is involved in performance art, enjoys exploring cultural stereotypes, race, sexuality and researching the history of sex work.
Madison lives in Australia and works as a stripper in Melbourne. She blogs about her experiences in sex work at https://1womandisrobing.wordpress.com/ and is one of the famous King Street showgirls. She wrote this as an introduction:
When I first begun I wore a wig to attempt to create a persona for work and to hide my real image so that if anyone I knew came into the club I would be anonymous. After the wig flung off in a lap dance and because I was spending so much of my time cooling off backstage due to the sheer heat the wig created, I ditched it and started working as “myself”. My awkwardness slowly dissipated as I became more at ease with myself. This took quite a long time, but now I am one of King streets showgirls. I perform a strip show to hundreds of men weekend in weekend out. The choreographed routines come together on stage with bright lights, loud music, smoke, lots of smoke and water.
As I have become more and more confident and content with myself and my work my view on others working in the sex industry has altered. I used to judge everyone about everything, but that horrible naive veil has been lifted and I now would love to be able to support others in the industry, help share their stories and also broaden people’s minds about what sex work entails.
I hope that you will support our new editors and perhaps join the new email list. To complete the editorial collective we really need an editor from the UK or Europe, India and Asia. A truly international collective of sex workers would be a celebration of greatness. And of course male, female and trans sex workers are equally respected at Harlots and all sex workers have a voice. You can contact any of the editors at Harlots by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and addressing your email to the particular editor you wish to contact. More changes will obviously take place over the coming months. It is all exciting and new. I wish Olive and Madison all the best of luck.