Stephanie Georgopulos here. You may recognize me from sites such as…well, this one, mostly. I was an editor at Thought Catalog for two years, over the course of which I met many, many wonderful writers–especially those of the vagina-having variety. So when I decided I wanted to answer the ever-pervasive question “what does it mean to be a young-ish woman in New York City?,” I had a pretty good idea of who to turn to.
Girls? is a book that highlights experiences by writers I know and trust. I trust them so much in fact, that I told them to write whatever the hell they wanted so long as it spoke to their experience in New York City as a…girl? This means the essay collection lacks balance–which I don’t think is a bad thing. It’s more of a real thing. It provides answers to questions I never asked: what do young women define themselves by? What stories do they want to tell? What experiences press up against their rib cages?
The answer is varied. They definitely wanted to talk sex. They wanted to talk food stamps, shitty apartments, and needing an escape. They wanted to talk about reliance on prescription pills and the experience of being a noob to NYC. Did I already mention sex?
Going into compiling this book, I thought I would provide a cohesive look at the young urban women of my generation. I did not do that. I provided something else, though–a look into lives most of us will never live. This book doesn’t attempt to elicit responses like, “This is so me!” In fact, it’s doubtful it will–which was exciting to realize, because women are not some homogeneous blob that look, feel, and speak the same way. You’ll relate to some of these stories. You’ll be mortified by others, maybe. Girls? doesn’t intend to speak for you, or for me–it instead speaks for the women who wrote it, who are (surprise)…individuals! And while showcasing that wasn’t my intention starting out, I’m stoked that giving writers vague guidelines produced a genuine picture of what these women had on their minds.
Speaking of those writers, you may recognize some of them too. Girls? features essays by:
- Rachel Rabbit White
- Liz Colville
- Leigh Alexander
- Karley Sciortino aka Slutever
- Marie Calloway
- Eudora Peterson
- Chloe Caldwell
- Stephanie White
- Molly Oswaks
- Karina Briski
- Mila Jaroniec
- Claire Mott aka No Sex City
And me of course, Stephanie Georgopulos.
Girls? is available today, and you can buy it from Amazon and iBookstore. So in the words of Ben Stiller, DO IT. DO. IT.