My own mother, who is not very active on social media, heard about Feminessay through someone other than me.
One of my favorite things is walking into a room, beginning a conversation with someone, and having her say “I’ve been working on a piece. I’m going to submit it soon.” It’s even more awesome when it comes from someone that I am meeting for the first time. This last time, it came from an author who has published through Feminessay before. We were seated together at an event, and my mother sat with us at the table. As my mother asked her to repeat what she said (it was pretty loud in the room), my mother revealed that she had never visited the Feminessay website. In that moment, I realized that I had never actually told my mother about Feminessay. In my feverish attempts to make sure that the world knows about Feminessay and the website becomes the prime destination for Black women all over the world to share their stories, I had forgotten my own mother. Shame on me! She heard about the website during her short scans through Facebook because mutual friends (bless their souls) posted links to the website, but she really knew nothing much about it.
“Mom, you should submit a piece.”
“Really? I didn’t think that you wanted me to.”
That was the first embarrassing moment that I experienced in 2019 (The other was a ridiculous fall that I suffered while running in socks on the slippery wood floors of my house. I’m still recovering). My own mother did not know about Feminessay! As I sat trying to figure out how I had missed such a major step in telling everyone I knew about this special space, the silver lining was that she found out about Feminessay through someone else. This let me know that Feminessay is a topic of discussion and that even when I can’t reach everyone, other readers, writers, and supporters can. When I can’t reach those who feel like their presence isn’t appreciated here, YOU can!
In the February newsletter, we mentioned that we have received tons of requests about how to support Feminessay. Some of those requests came from non-Black women who love to read our stories and are not really sure about how to support this cause. Others came from men who usually first complained about a lack of similar publication space for themselves, but shared the similar question of “How can I support?” I personally appreciate when readers reach out to find out how they can do more to spread Feminessay to their friends and family. It’s actually really simple: SHARE FEMINESSAY.
One thing I realized through my embarrassment was that word spreads quickly through social media and conversation. My own mother, who is not very active on social media, heard about Feminessay through someone other than me. Imagine how many more people can be introduced to all of the beautiful work on this site by you sharing just one piece! Here are a few simple ways that you can help us spread Feminessay:
Bring Feminessay into the conversation by posting a link to your favorite pieces on your social media pages.
Like, comment on, tag friends, and repost Feminessay’s IG posts so that more of your friends see them.
Introduce your writer friends to the website. You know, the ones who write those super long FB statuses, love to journal, or are always looking for inspiration. Chances are, they’ll love to read our stories and may know someone else who wants to submit their writing.
As I spend the rest of this month urging my mother to submit a piece to Feminessay, I hope to see Feminessay continue to grow, thanks to our combined efforts. We at Feminessay will continue to post and share our stories, inspiration, and a few other goodies, and we hope that you will continue to share it all with the world as well. Thank you for all you’ve done and will continue to do to help this fabulous Feminessay community grow!
Read + write away, today and every day.
— Tiye Naeemah Cort,
Global Editor-in-Chief + Founder