To say I’ve needed a pick-me-up these past fifteen days is an understatement. I’m fluctuating in and out of Trump-induced panic and a whole lot of grief; I haven’t slept many (if any) full nights in the meantime. It’s helped to mostly stay off the internet and read books, go on a mini vacation with my girlfriend, show up at protests, and see friends who inspire me. This week, I’ve been looking for something to cut through the fog and get me to the part where I’m more ready to act, speak out, and fight.
Enter Bright Lite — the badass magazine for girls that, true to its name, will bring light to your world, a grin to your face, and much-needed hope to your heart.
Bright Lite is the brainchild of photographer Christa Renee and illustrator and writer Ami Komai. They started the magazine to create a community where preteen girls “don’t have to fight for their voice to be heard and no one questions whether they are equal or not.” It’s “born out of determination to show young girls the future is indeed bright.” Tearing up yet? Yeah, me too.
Each issue of Bright Lite (there are two out now and a third available for preorder) features articles, interviews, journals, recipes, crafts, and more all curated for and by preteen girls. That’s right — the editorial board is made up entirely of girls. So they’re not just the target readership; they’re creating the content and running the show. Best of all, Bright Lite is “inclusive to ALL girls — including trans, bi, gay, all of the above.” In the words of their Editorial Assistant, Rikki Johnson:
“One of the reasons Bright Lite is so important to me is because it’s something I know I wish I had as a queer youth. Being a girl can be tough, being gay can be tough. Bright Lite is a place where you can be you, whoever that is. A place where you can express yourself in any way that feels right, without judgment. It is a community of strong young women who inspire and support each other.”
Bright Lite comes out quarterly, but its website features new stuff all the time, and they’re always encouraging submissions through Instagram (so if you know or are an awesome girl, this is your moment!). And good news for us all: they’re raising funds on Kickstarter to keep more issues coming! They’ve already blown past their original goal, but more support means more Bright Lite and let’s be honest, that’s what the world needs right now. You’ve got three more days to contribute, so take care of it ASAP. The inclusive feminist tweens need you!
I can’t explain how much I wish Bright Lite had existed when I was growing up. If you want to make sure this one-of-a-kind resource continues to grow and thrive, chip in to the Kickstarter or check out their amazing shop (I’m definitely getting this shirt). They honestly say it best: “Now more than ever, it is imperative to give young girls the confidence and supportive community they deserve.”
I’ll take one hundred copies of everything, thanks.
Before you go! It takes funding to keep this publication by and for queer women and trans people of all genders running every day. And A+ members keep the majority of our site free for everyone. Still, 99.9% of our readers are not members. A+ membership starts at just $4/month. If you’re able to, will you join A+ and keep Autostraddle here and working for everyone?