Goodness. The last few months have really made the word ‘occupation’ feel very full for me. Occupied. In addition to the muchness I’ve had happening in Melbourne, I’ve also been spending an uncharateristic amount of time in airports getting liminal and trying to sneak really heavy bags in as hand luggage.
I have always moved with sex. When I go through my history of travels and transversings along the earth, I find I have very often moved around the place by the vehicle of my existence in the field of sexuality. In this way my connection with sex has created a lot of space in my life, has allowed me to repeatedly bust my geographies with a dildo-handled mallet and touch my feet to new grounds. Travel and sex are both pretty trippy. Journeymaking, life-altering, self-constructing, horizon-bending. They are ways in which we feel into new territory and shine light on elements of ourselves and our surroundings. Other bodies, other lands, other modalities of being. I am grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to combine these two things. They’re an intense but revelatory match. Sometimes I am jumping off of corporeal cliffs when I’m far away from home. This can be completely disorienting / rupturing. But sometimes that’s necessary.
While the roaming I’ve done recently has often been saturated with labour and frenzy and general exhaust, I’ve tried to hang on to some of the rituals that I associate with travel and becoming acquainted with place. The networks and webs I’ve grown into continue to provide me with little perks that still allow me to explore within the constraints of extremely long days, that call me to slowness when I’m feeling the absence of the deceleration mechanisms I employ at home. I’m currently tearing up Sydney’s hills on a friend’s single-speed, looking for the green blocks on the map and gravitating towards them, making sure I walk around with headphones on, cooking my own food. I try to cultivate some sense of my daily normativities and domesticities in these places, to carry my homeness around with me. Like a turtle. Self-contained.
For someone who is personally shifting intensely into a desire for roots, for foundational work, to ground deeply, this movement does shake me a little, and I attempt to respond by just allowing that and being grateful that I have access to this motion and the meditative qualities that can offer. Being out of your element can make you quite focussed, and I think I require that mental training at this moment when the breadth of my labour has become a little more broad than can be comfortably reached.
Queer porn empress Courtney Trouble wrote this post last week about dusting off her Amazon wishlist as a means of crowd-funding her work, and it kicked me into gear on creating one of my own. I’ve been thinking about doing this for, oh, years, and I can’t say with any certainty what’s blocked me from doing so. I think there are a few challenge-worthy fears at play. The fear of being seen as greedy or needy. Of being regarded as having such inflated self-worth that I might suggest you buy me a present. Of outing myself as a broke ho.
But the time has come to address these things and I, Gala Vanting, have an Amazon Wishlist.
Call me a nay-sayer, but I suspect I’d have limited success launching a Kickstarter for kink gear, or a Pozible campaign to make a feature-length film about my cunt (though I could, and probably will, spend a lot of time thinking about what I’d title said campaign). But I do see the value of utilising the crowd-funding concept for those of us who don’t have access to the outlandish amounts of capital often associated with both the porn and fetish industries (we shall work together to unpack that assumption at a later date). Titter if you must, but I think that what I do does have a grassroots sort of quality to it. I’m starting from nothing, from the bottom. And I’m doing what I do in no small part because I’m trying to make the world a better place for sex. I’m sure that riches await me at some point down the line, but now is not my time; trainees in pro BDSM don’t make money. As I’ve only recently re-entered the industry after a couple of years off, I don’t have the smutmaking momentum re-built to be raking in the middle-class salary I once made as a niche market porn producer / persona. When you are not a mainstream concern, you do not make mainstream money.
This is where my fans and friends come in. I know you exist – I’ve got an email archive to prove it, and several sex threats. Tiny things make a difference for me right now. Not having to buy a $30 book to continue my pro BDSM training means that I’ve got food money for the week. Stockings are essential, and highly fragile / disposable. It’s like that, yanno? Let’s not even talk about latex outfits yet. Unless you want to. In which case, email me. This is the first of several attempts I’ll be making to keep myself above water while I womanifest a living wage. Financial slaves: you know where to find me.
April was a huge month. Between Xplore and Sex Camp 2012, followed by an intense week producing a film that I hope to enter in the Berlin Porn Film Festival, I feel completely saturated with possibility, pride, new contacts and energies, and education. There is so fucking much to do. And so many incredible folks to do it with. I had to sleep for two days and then roll around between two gritty walls of dub in an old bank vault to not feel completely buried in that, but I’ve come out the other side now and am starting to actualise.
As someone with relatively diverse modalities of working in this industry, I often find it hard to focus my efforts and energies, and the events of the last month have given me more and more options. Doors are constantly opening and the number of truly quality folks who appear in my sphere just continues to grow. And to this I say fuck yeah.
So in May you’re going to see a big push from me towards marketing and branding Gala. And you may get some spam. It’s been a very long road to deciding do this. I know very little about marketing and the term ‘branding’ makes my little anarcho-grrl heart clench all up. I’m not a fucking capitalist, which is one of the things I like most about myself. But I’ve given a hell of a lot of myself to my work over the last 6 or so years, and ain’t no dollar value assignable to that. I’m the brokest ho I know (also a great topic I hope to address at some point), and it really gets me down. So I’m putting my mind to developing more and more ways in which the folks who enjoy what I offer can help to support me to keep offering it. We’re all starving artists, I know it, but I can’t help but think that if my cunt is making that art I should be able to afford to look after it a little better. You should know that I’ll be spending my first million on a permanent vajazzling.