“Confessions of a PUA Chaser” is OUT now! Also: Thank you, Feministe.

Sex.
Love.
S&M.
Ethics.
Seduction.
Feminism.
Polyamory.
Pickup artists.

(Cover image copyright © 2005 Beautiful Disasters Photography. Thanks so much to Beautiful Disasters for giving it to me. Cover image description: a girl in a corset with a bowler hat tipped down over her eyes.)

I have basically been running a marathon with my brain in order to release this ebook in time for the SXSW-interactive conference, and I’m a little stunned that I succeeded. You can click here to buy it now on Amazon! Please note that even if you don’t have a Kindle, you can still read the book on your smartphone or computer after downloading the free Kindle app for PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry, Android Phone, etc.

UPDATE: I’ve put the book up to full price. Thanks to everyone who has bought it so far! It really made a splash. You can now also buy the book on Smashwords, which offers pretty much every possible e-format. Also, there have been some great reviews, which I linked to on my personal blog.

Here’s the Amazon description of the book:

There’s an enormous subculture of men who trade tips, tricks, and tactics for seducing women. Within the last half-decade or so, these underground “pickup artists” have burst into the popular consciousness, aided by Neil Strauss’s bestselling book “The Game” and VH1’s hit reality show “The Pick-Up Artist.” Some men in the seduction community are sleazy misogynists who want nothing more than power and control. Some are shy wallflowers who don’t know how to say “Hi” to a girl. The one thing they all have in common is a driving need to attract women.

Clarisse Thorn, a feminist S&M writer and activist, spent years researching these guys. She observed their discussions, watched them in action, and learned their strategies. By the end of it all, she’d given a lecture at a seduction convention and decided against becoming the next great dating coach. In “Confessions of a Pickup Artist Chaser,” Clarisse tells the story of her time among these Casanovas, as well as her own unorthodox experiences with sex and relationships. She examines the conflicts and harmonies of feminism, pickup artistry, and the S&M community. Most of all, she deconstructs and reconstructs our views on sex, love, and ethics — and develops her own grand theory of the game.

Plus: I made a fan page for Confessions on Facebook, and I encourage discussion there. I also encourage discussion in comments on my blog — and here, of course, but Feministe comments close automatically after two weeks, and a lot of people probably won’t even be done reading by then. I’m very curious to see what people think of it all.

Right now I’m here in Austin for the conference, and even though I’m completely exhausted, I’m also psyched. I’ve been recruited for a panel on pickup artists and feminism that’s being run by Kristin Cerda — it features myself, the female dating coach Charlie Nox, the pickup artist coach Adam Lyons, and the well-known feminist Amanda Marcotte. The panel will take place on Saturday March 10 at 6.30 PM. If any Feministe readers attend, I’d love to meet you.

* * *

As a side note, I wanted to thank Feministe for having me, and let y’all know that I have decided to stop writing semi-regularly at Feministe. I’m happy about the time I’ve spent participating here, and I am very grateful to the Feministe staff — Jill, Sally, and Caperton — for encouraging my writing.

I also think that the commentariat is really smart, and I’m grateful to y’all for engaging with my work. I’ve found much of the constructive criticism here to be nourishing and challenging.

I’d like to note briefly that I have felt uncomfortable with the way some people have portrayed me as “staff” or an “editor” here at Feministe. It’s credit I that I have not earned, and it’s led to a number of misconceptions about Feministe and my role at Feministe. I’ve called myself a “Feministe blogger” before, but I’m not and have never been a staff blogger or an editor — more like an ongoing guest blogger. I may ask to guest post here in the future; if that happens, I’ll request to be labeled as a guest blogger in the posts. (I have suggested a number of guest posts from other writers as well, and I do want to apologize for this one that went up on February 20. I had seen a few individual posts from the writer that I liked, and I didn’t look at her main page before suggesting the post. I should have been more careful about whose work I suggested, and I’m sorry about that. However, I’m glad that I was able to highlight some of the other guest posts I’ve found.)

I will continue writing regularly at various sites, including my own, clarissethorn.com. And I’m on Twitter.

I think that feminist writers across the Internet are doing really important work, and that in many ways, Feministe has always taken the lead. I’m honored to have contributed here. Thank you all again for having me.

About Clarisse Thorn

Clarisse Thorn is a Chicago-based, feminist, sex-positive activist and educator. Personal blog at clarissethorn.com; follow her on Twitter @clarissethorn; you can also buy her awesome book about pickup artists or her awesome best-of collection, The S&M Feminist.
This entry was posted in Blogging, Dating, Entertainment, Feminism, Popular Culture, Rape Culture, Recommended, relationships, Sex and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to “Confessions of a PUA Chaser” is OUT now! Also: Thank you, Feministe.

  1. Anonymous says:

    I also think that the commentariat is really smart, and I’m grateful to y’all for engaging with my work. I’ve found much of the constructive criticism here to be nourishing and challenging.

    The mind boggles.

    It’s also somewhat…troubling to combine self-promotion and this weird apology in a farewell.

  2. Merryn says:

    You sold me with the low low price. Sounds like an interesting read.

  3. Jadey says:

    Hey, Clarisse,

    Thanks for the clarification on the end of your post – I guess my memory is as faulty as ever, because I actually thought you *had* been announced as a staff blogger here. I do appreciate having a better understanding of the organizational dynamics here.

    I want to suggest though that if you would like to ensure that more people are aware of this (and your apology for the reposting of the Ancient Rome post), it might be more effective as a standalone post – I didn’t click on this post originally because I’d already read the one on your main site. I’m going to guess that probably lots of other people also didn’t necessarily check out this post if they weren’t interested in your book (which looks cool, by the way!), had already seen it elsewhere, were annoyed with you, etc. If someone hadn’t commented on this post and I hadn’t scrolled up a little, I almost certainly never would have seen it myself.

    In my experience, readers skim. If it’s not advertised in the title and the blurb above the fold, then you are not going to reach your audience.

  4. Jadey says:

    (I do realize that you put “Thank you, Feministe” in your header, but that’s not terribly descriptive – it doesn’t catch the eye and even after I did read it I thought it was a standalone message. Separate topic = separate post.)

  5. Echo Zen says:

    I’m thankful for the work you’ve contributed to the blogosphere, Clarisse. In my own family, I’ve seen how the articles you’ve written have shaped my sister’s maturation over the years into a thoughtful, compassionate feminist.

    (Also, while I don’t judge books themselves by their covers, that book cover sure kicks arse.)

  6. AnonCoward23 says:

    “free Kindle app for PC”

    Make that [i]Windows[/i] PC. Not available on Linux (or, say, any of the BSDs), which, you now, also runs on PCs.

    This is why open formats are important. In case of ebooks, EPUB.

  7. Dibbit says:

    “free Kindle app for PC”

    Make that [i]Windows[/i] PC. Not available on Linux (or, say, any of the BSDs), which, you now, also runs on PCs.

    Choosing Linux means you sometimes have to do things differently(and on rare occasions, not at all) then other people.
    In this case:

    Use this link to read kindle books.

  8. Louisa says:

    I know you’ve had some rough times here. You will be missed.

  9. AMM says:

    I hate to be a Debbie (Danny?) Downer, but I’m troubled by the similarities between the classic Pick-Up-Artist and a certain him-who-must-not-be-named, who not so very long ago you presented as a respectable feminist in this very forum.

    I was concerned back then that you seemed to have a blind spot to the red flags in his writings and behavior that were so obvious to many of us, and that you still didn’t seem to see them as red flags even after they were pointed out. (If you’ve come to see the light in the meantime, then I have missed it.)

    If I read your book, I would constantly wonder what things were going on that I would consider very significant but that you weren’t seeing and weren’t telling us about.

  10. Athenia says:

    Hey Clarisse! I keep hearing about this book called “50 Shades of Grey.” Apparently, it’s REALLY popular among suburban housewives–this is their first experience with hardcore S&M erotica…..I definitely wondered what your take on it would be.

  11. @Jadey — I guess I could do that … I didn’t really want to make a big deal out of it, honestly.

    @AMM — If I read your book, I would constantly wonder what things were going on that I would consider very significant but that you weren’t seeing and weren’t telling us about.

    This is certainly a conversation I’d be happy to have with you if you did read the book. If you don’t read it, then I guess I’m not sure what to say.

  12. I’ll add my voice to the “you’ll be greatly missed here” chorus.
    I planned to buy your book over the weekend and got distracted with life. Will have to do so when I get home tonight.

  13. Jadey says:

    @ Clarisse

    Yeah, I can get maybe not wanting to make a big deal out of it – your time here has been tumultuous for certain, and there’s already been a lot of spotlight on your participation here. (I do really like your sex and kink posts and will continue to follow your main blog and other postings around the ‘net, by the way.) But I guess I was thinking that if it’s something worth saying, it’s probably something worth saying where people will hear it, be it “good bye”, “thank you”, and/or “I’m sorry”. Maybe a post with the comments turned off, if you were trying to avoid rehashing of past debates? I know that annoys some of the commentariat, but nothing ever pleases everyone.

    Anyway, it’s of course your call. If you weren’t looking to broadcast it, then your placement of it makes sense. I’m not really sure of the purpose of putting it up at all though, at that point.

  14. Claire says:

    This sounds really interesting! Good idea of such a low introductory price as well!

  15. LC says:

    I’ve heard 50 Shades of Gray is basically Twlight re-written as BDSM porn.

  16. Adrian Fynch says:

    So,
    I’d really like to read your book, but I don’t have a kindle and the kindle app you linked doesn’t work with my version of mac.

  17. I’m really excited to announce that the book hit #1 in the Amazon Feminist Theory category AND #1 in the Sex category on Saturday night, and it’s still #1 in both!

    I’ll release a paper copy of the book as well within the next few weeks. You can keep an eye on my blog or Twitter or the Facebook page to be updated when that happens. The paper copy will be more expensive because production costs are MUCH higher, unfortunately.

    @Jadey — I guess it’s not so much that I’m not looking to broadcast it, but at this point it seems like if I do another goodbye post, it’s just belaboring the point. I don’t know, I’ll think about it. I certainly wouldn’t do a post with the comments turned off because I can’t deal with the hate mail I’d get for that :P

  18. Djinna says:

    I’m enjoying the Kindle sample greatly, and am going for the full version – thanks for the warning that the introductory price is only temporary. And that it’s out at all.

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