The Girl Gang Missives Turns One!


GGMBy Nicole Belanger

[dropcap background="no" color="#333333"]T[/dropcap]he Girl Gang Missives turns 1 today! Hooray for finally being consistent on something for once in my life! (Seriously, though. That is a huge victory for me.) So before I dive into the good stuff -- it's all there if you scroll down! -- I just wanted to share a little note with you to mark the occasion:[divider type="dashed" spacing="10"]

Let me start by saying this: you really don't know what this, and you, have meant to me over the last year.

I started the Girl Gang Missives on a whim, and it has become one of the only real constants in my life. I have written it from cities around North America, it stayed with me through my move this past January, it stayed with me as I set freelancing aside and took up the mantle of stability and routine. I've written it in early mornings under the gun, and I've spent late nights gleefully tapping away at my keyboard, eagerly anticipating which links and articles will give you all the most joy the next morning.

I say that "it" has stayed with me, but really it is you that have stayed with me. The very first edition of the Girl Gang Missives went out on July 17th, 2015 to 25 people. Today, our community is 312 members strong.

I'll say it again: you have no idea what you have meant to me.

Your tweets, your shares, your kind emails. They have been source of some of the sweetest moments, and have been a source of true, genuine joy, in a year that's been a lot and also kind of all over the place.

But no retweet, recommendation, or open rate will ever come close to giving me the joy and satisfaction that I experience when I get an email from one of you promoting your own work or that of a friend.

To witness you radiating that pride and confidence -- either in yourself or in another -- is a blessing.

Thank you for blessing me for a whole year.

I can't wait to see what the next 52 Fridays will bring.

With love and a grateful heart,


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[dropcap background="no" color="#333333"]T[/dropcap]his week, the women are training up young creatives, trying to make tech boards less shitty (sorry, less male) and writing about lady scientists on TV.

  1. The dollars-and-cents cost of an "interesting" life: In an interview for The Billfold, Leigh Stein, the creator of BinderCon (a conference series for women and gender non-conforming writers) speaks openly about her financial situation, what an initiative like BinderCon really takes in, and how she makes it all work (hint: with help).[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  2. Congrats on the 10 year contract, Carla! Honestly, as exciting as it is that Carla Hayden is both the first woman and the first African-American to take on the role of Librarian of Congress, I think it's more noteworthy that she somehow managed to snag a 10 year contract in this day and age. Oh, job security![divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  3. Scully, Ghostbusters, Melinda from SVU -- and you: This month, Bitch Flicks is looking for women to submit their writing on the subject of the representations of female scientists on screen. Pitch them ASAP, but the final deadline to submit your piece is July 24th. Good luck![divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  4. And now for another big bummer out of Silicon Valley: (and also kind of everywhere else.) In an effort to light a proverbial fire under the tech world's collective butts, chronic founder Sukhinder Singh Cassidy has launched a new tool to accompany the work of her latest venture, the BoardList -- theBoardList Index. The goal of the new tool? To track and publish the (currently dismal) numbers of women on public and private tech company boards.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  5. How do you track a complicated period? Dr. Noémie Elhad doesn't have anything against the current selection of period tracker apps, but she does find them a little disappointing. Why? Because they seem to be primarily for the purpose of tracking fertility or preventing pregnancy -- not tracking or managing the myriad symptoms and complications that many period-havers really want to track from month to month. That is why, along with her the Columbia Medical Centre, Dr. Elhad is hard at work creating a tracker specifically for women with endometriosis -- like herself.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  6. On beauty tutorials & being a femme of color: I want to convince you to watch this video by Ariana Rodriguez Zertuche, but I don't want to spoil the delightful surprise that it is. So instead I'll just say please please please watch it. Okay?[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  7. Where Blackness and Indigineity intersect: I'm really excited to dig into the latest offering from the Indian & Cowboy Podcast Network: The Henceforward, a podcast that considers that considers relationships between Indigenous Peoples & Black Peoples (and I'm guessing the intersection of both those identities) on Turtle Island. You can follow the producer, Eve Tuck, here.[divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  8. Calling all young Black female creatives in Toronto! From the creators of the #GYALCAST podcast comes The #GYALCAST Academy, a workshop series on everything from confidence to PR to grant writing for young Black female creatives. Unfortunately, the deadline has passed but I think it's an initiative worth keeping an eye on and, who knows, maybe they need some volunteers![divider type="white" spacing="10"]
  9. Something giggle-worthy for the road: If you don't know my angles, don't even bother trying to take my picture.

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Now, over to you…

Want your work, or the work of a friend shouted out in next week’s #GirlGangMissives? Email Nicole at!

NicoleBelangerPhotoNicole Belanger is the founder of Fourth Hour, a collection of original content that celebrates and supports everyday women in their daily lives. She is the author of the ebook On Resilience, the creator of the Conversations With Her interview series and the send-er of the Girl Gang Missives every Friday morning.