Last of the Live Nude Girls: a Memoir, the

McClear, Sheila

If a zine girl is going to write a memoir, I'm going to read it. Sheila does a better job than most at making the leap to the big spine. I don't have any complaints as far as that goes, like I often do. The editing and production are good. The only thing that bothered me at all is that I'm pretty sure I recognize one of the background characters, whose identity is concealed only by a very minor name change.

Sheila, a Michigan transplant and theater major whose former work and activism focused on organized labor, moves to NYC to run costumes for a show in Harlem. Once the show, which didn't pay very well anyway, closes, Sheila needs some dough and ends up stripping. Most of the book concerns her time in the Times Square peep shows though one of the parts I found most interesting was Sheila's working "vacation" to PDX and San Francisco. It's neat to see what the regional differences are.

She deals with any political arguments for or against sex work, but she does clearly depict how the experience wasn't particularly helpful for any of her colleagues. She doesn't judge her colleagues, just shares their part in her story. There seems to be significant drinking and taking of drugs, but very little sex for money among the "no-touching" set.

Nov 13 2012