HAIL TO THE CHIEF: FAREWELL TO AFTERELLEN.COM CREATOR SARAH WARN
The announcement this week that Sarah would be ending her tenure as the Editor in Chief of the largest lesbian and bisexual women’s entertainment site in the world had a dramatic effect. Hundreds of readers were moved to comment on their own personal history with the site, what it has meant to them, and Sarah’s legacy. I am no different.
Though I began writing for the site in 2005, I first discovered AfterEllen.com years before as a reader. I was thrilled to finally find a website that picked up where my graduate school education left off, a place where I could continue to learn about the representation of lesbians and bisexual women in pop culture and enjoy thoughtful discussions of the impact of those depictions on our lives in the real world. Better yet, AfterEllen.com didn’t charge tuition.
As fate would have it, Sarah and I finally met and quickly discovered that we had in common an encyclopedic knowledge of feminist theory, endless pop culture references, and detailed memories of virtually every bad lesbian movie ever made. We could either work together on a lesbian/bi entertainment website or become a formidable team when playing Trivial Pursuit: The Gay Pop Culture Edition.
Luckily for me, we agreed upon the former and my life hasn’t been the same since. Thanks to Sarah and her invitation to join the staff of AfterEllen.com, I gained even greater knowledge of bad lesbian movies, developed my voice as a writer, found new friends, and even met my wife. I also learned html, how to operate a video camera, and how to use the word "vlog" as a verb.
I feel very lucky to have met Sarah, to have been invited to be a part of the evolution of AfterEllen.com, and to watch her steer the website to success. Her passionate, thoughtful and enthusiastic leadership has created a site where readers from around the globe can connect, relate, learn and find community, sometimes when that same type of community did not exist in their offline worlds.
Sarah Warn and AfterEllen.com have changed lives. They certainly changed mine.
Sarah and AfterEllen.com readers at an AE meet-up in New York City, 2008
So even though she’s officially leaving us, we’re not going to be all dramatic and lesbian about it. No one’s going to jump off a building (like in Lost & Delirious), resort to gunplay (as in Bound), or insist on wearing really bad hats (as in Go Fish, Bar Girls, and probably a few other movies that I’ve simply blocked out) in protest.
Because we love her, we’ll let her go and trust that she will come back to us … at least once a month to write her "Visibility Matters" column. If she doesn’t, we’ll haunt her on her new personal site until she does.
Thank you, Sarah, for what you’ve built and shared with us all. Now go get some sleep!
— by Karman Kregloe
Margaret Robison, mother of writer Augusten Burroughs, is writing a memoir of her own.
We’ve just added lists to our AfterEllen.com Twitter account. The lists include current and former AfterEllen.com writers; celesbians (out lesbian and bisexual women in entertainment); comedians; musicians; and “celebs” (all the celebrities we follow, including comedians, musicians, and celezbians). This way you can follow all of the people on one or more of these lists, with just one click. We’re in the process of adding more lists now, so let us know if you have any suggestions!
That’s it for this week! Got the inside scoop on a hot new lesbian/bi actor/musician/TV show/film? Tell us at email@example.com. Check back next Fridayfor another edition of Best. Lesbian. Week. Ever.