In 2010, 46 brave Kickstarter backers funded the first issue of my feminist bicycle zine, Taking the Lane. I printed 500 copies, thinking it would be a lifetime supply. They were gone in months.
This set me on a path that I never imagined, publishing zines and books about the intersections between two things I love: bikes and feminism.
Now, seven years and two dozen successful projects later, I'm asking you to help fund Taking the Lane's fourteenth issue, which provides feminist bicycling perspectives on class, race, gender, and money.
What makes this project Gold? The rewards include everything I've published (that's still in print), and some rad feminist bike stickers that you can use to display your proudest intersectional leanings to the world.
But the real gold is the community: The authors, artists, and backers who literally make this stuff happen. Kickstarter is the glue that holds us all together and that's priceless.
Here's what reader Rachel Jacobson of Oakland says about Taking the Lane: "I love what Elly publishes because she searches out and helps elevate as important and valuable voices telling their own stories and truths. I get tired of white men telling me "you should bike, it's healthy and fun". The eclectic writers in Elly's collections share their hearts, their fury, their poignant questions, and so much more."
Bikequity is a zine about money, class, social justice, and bicycling.
In its pages, you'll find art and writing from a dozen plus contributors about what bicycling has meant to them: A vehicle for activism, a means of communicating (or finding conflict) across class lines, a way out of an abusive relationship, a salve when everything else has fallen to pieces, a touchstone for the complexities of identity and political upheaval today.
Inside you'll find:
- In "Really Awesome and Poor," Tammy Melody Gomez writes about the joy she finds in bicycling and not fitting in with social bike culture
- In "Pedaling Back to Myself," V.K. Henry tells of escaping an abusive relationship and finding financial independence by bicycle
- In "'Han'-ted Riding," Do Jun Lee thinks about his bicycle advocacy work in light of his personal and family ghosts
- In "Smirk," Tamika Butler writes about fear and defiance in the face of being profiled—by gender, race, and transportation mode
- In "Founding CicLAvia," Adonia Lugo recounts her path to co-creating what is now an iconic Los Angeles Open Streets event
- Plus much more, including class mobility, clashes, and consciousness, gentrification, disability, copyright, karma, cussing, a poem, and a recipe
Other than editing Taking the Lane, I also publish books about feminism and bicycling and many, many other topics from punk to cats to gardening at Microcosm Publishing in Portland, Oregon. Of all the things I do for work (most of which also involve a lot of editing and publishing!), producing this zine is still my favorite. I still get thrilled every time submissions start to come in for a new issue. Working with new writers, building relationships with regular contributors, working together to put unique voices and perspectives out into the world and promote my two favorite topics... I love everything about it.
The call for submissions for this issue was for writing about class, money, and social justice. I've spent more than ten years involved in writing about, advocating for, and organizing around bicycling, and it's often been frustrating how these topics are frequently the elephant in the room.
The next issue, #15, will be about transgender experiences cycling (and the call for submissions is still open!).
Just the zine! Your very own copy of Bikequity to read, scribble margin notes in, and loan to a friend.
Get Gold: At this level, you'll receive the book and a selection of feminist bicycle stickers, sorta like the ones pictured here but even more feminist.
Even Golder: At this level, you'll get Bikequity, the stickers, and the last three issues of Taking the Lane.
Lots of Feminist Bike Zines: At this level you'll get Bikequity, the stickers, and the last six issues of Taking the Lane.
Sci Fi Fan Special: That tenth issue set off a chain reaction, and this level is full of the feminist bicycle science fiction books it inspired. You'll get Bikequity and Cycletherapy, plus the stickers, and that original Bikes in Space zine, plus:
- Bikes in Space Volume 2
- Pedal Zombies (Bikes in Space 3)
- Biketopia (Bikes in Space 4)
- The Velocipede Races (the steampunkish novel by Emily June Street)
Love to Bike: This level contains a wide selection of feminist bicycle books and zines, including Bikequity, the stickers, many of the titles above, plus:
- Our Bodies, Our Bikes (TTL #5 had the same title and theme; this book version is hugely expanded and contains a few of the same essays)
- The Culinary Cyclist: A Cookbook and Companion for the Good Life (by Anna Brones)
- Everyday Bicycling: Ride a Bike for Transportation Whatever Your Lifestyle (by me)
- Zoom! The Story of a Boy and His Balance Bike (a toddler-age book by Jennifer Charrette and Marcia Kinne)
Risks and challenges
There are tons of challenges when it comes to publishing, and while I've encountered an extensive laundry list of them in the last 7 years I have no doubt there are plenty more to come! Most of them, fortunately, can be dealt with either with time (like waiting another week or three for the books to come back from the printer) or non-huge sums of money (like printing MORE stickers when you botch the math and run out way too soon) or good old fashioned communication (like keeping you up to date about all of the above).
Thank you for believing in and supporting this work! I hope the finished product makes you feel and think in interesting and valuable ways.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)