Introducing “Queer Sultry Summer,” A Mini-Book We Wrote For You

So it’s hot out and the sun almost never sets and all we want to do is celebrate ourselves and each other, take off our sweaters, eat some tomatoes and look desperately for a body of water to throw ourselves into. Alternately, you could do all that and also read the third issue in the Better Together mini-book/zine series created by Everyone is Gay and We had some big broad plans for this one, and it was tough to narrow down the real direction we wanted to take.

Then Mey Rude came along with her Dependence Day pitch and everything clicked for us: the piece (which I won’t tell you much more about ’cause you’re gonna read it and love it as soon as this book arrives in your mailbox) was exactly the spirit we’d wanted put hadn’t been able to put into words.

So, presenting our most ambitious print project to date: Queer Sultry Summer, a 68-page color ‘zine/mini-book. We’re pretty f*cking proud of it.

photo 1 copy

We wanted this collection of essays to be about having so much real fun (even in a fucked-up, patriarchal world) because it’s summer and you deserve it. You deserve to be with your chosen family of weirdos, celebrating and making your own rules, declaring your own traditions.

For Queer Sultry Summer, we gathered stories from queers who’ve made their own Pride celebrations and their own holiday, worn the damn shorts, battled the bear, sported the body hair, survived the church camp, found gratitude in the fact that it’s not the 1800s, found themselves in the country, beneath the stars… and didn’t give up.

photo 3_ARTICLE

We went all out for this mini-book, jam-packing each page with every hope and dream we ever hoped or dreamed. Last year when we asked you about which products you’d like Autostraddle to sell, most of you picked “print magazine” as the one you’re most drawn to. We think this is our greatest accomplishment in that department.

photo 2 copy

Contents include:

  • Poetry by Eileen Myles
  • An original Lumberjanes comic from BOOM! Studios commissioned exclusively for this book
  • Brand new work and beloved essays by authors including Mal Blum, Maddie Taterka, Mey Rude, Elicia Sanchez, Amy Dobrowolsky, Malaika Aleba and Lila Cherneff.
  • “Get Sweaty” playlist by Brittani Nichols
  • Riese’s Sultry Summer Crossword Puzzle that took three days to put together
  • “How to Make Iced Coffee,” a comic by Rory Midhani with words and recipe by Rachel Kincaid
  • Hilarious Top Tens you’ve never read before from Riese Bernard, Kristin Russo and Dannielle Owens-Reid
  • Laneia‘s Queerish Summer Scavenger Hunt (tag your finds on instagram and you could win a special prize!)
  • The story of when Kristin Russo almost got eaten by a bear, with footnotes by Jenny Owen Youngs
  • Advice from Everyone is Gay
  • Cut-out bookplates by Rory
  • Yearbook-style autograph pages for your new/old summer friends


  • The first print run of this issue includes a bonus insert: four pages of adorable summer paper dolls created by Rory Midhani. This is a limited edition inclusion, so get yours now if you wanna get some of those (and trust me: you do).
  • If you order your copy by Saturday, June 20th, we’ll throw in a FREE “You Do You” Sticker!

Get Yours Now for $20 at the Autostraddle Store

While you’re there, check out the first two issues in this series: OMG I’m Gay and I Broke Up Like This!

Support independent women’s media and the good work done by Everyone is Gay and Autostraddle!

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3184 articles for us.


  1. y’all, i wouldn’t even let them publish the essay i wrote in here on A-PLUS, that’s how super special it is.

    also rory’s illustrating is so good i tear up about it every time i look through it.

  2. Do the zines get shipped separately from the other merch items? I was going to get a bunch of stuff at once to save on shipping, but it seems like there’s a separate zine shipping charge (which is weirdly more than getting a load of heavy stuff).

    • Sometimes the zines are shipped separately and sometimes not. It depends on the order. Each merch item has its own shipping charges that are based on weight and the packaging required. If you have specific questions about your order feel free to e-mail me (bren [at] autostraddle [dot] com.

      <3 Bren Autostraddle’s Merch Girl

  3. I forgot to buy this at camp like a big dork. RECTIFIED. Can’t wait to read and look at and interact with all these beautiful things.

  4. q: will this help or hinder my ability to get through the southern hemisphere winter of despair? it is so not sultry right now.

  5. I want this one just because being able to openly and fully celebrate Pride sounds like an alternate life in a fictional, ideal world.

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