Discouraged by shrinking freelancing opportunities at women’s magazines and poor representation of female writers in thought-leader publications like The Atlantic and Harper’s, author Laura Fraser, magazine editor Peggy Northrop and publishing dynamo Rachel Greenfield created Shebooks, a curated collection of ebooks for women. Each book has fewer than 10,000 words and designed to be devoured in an hour or two. Available through a subscription or by individual purchase, Shebooks features a wide variety of content and caters to female readers.
The Shebooks founders were motivated by a desire to see more women writers published and allow female readers access to the kind of material they want. “The economics are stacked against the kind of stories women really care about,” SFGate quoted cofounder Northrop saying in a July 13 article. “Advertisers aren’t going to support those stories. But if you’re supported by subscribers, you can reach women directly.
Shebooks authors aren’t wannabes looking for an easy way to get published. Submissions are vetted by a prestigious group of editors and the pieces that get accepted are often written by accomplished essayists and novelists, who, like founder Fraser, are exploring the opportunities available to writers in this digital publishing age.
In my first journey into the collection, I read Out of Dublin, a memoir of childhood and the loss of parents by Ethel Rohan, an Irish short story writer; Remnants of Passion, a collection of essays on love, sex and life from Sarah Einstein, an essayist and managing editor at Brevity magazine; and my favorite, Richochet, a memoir by journalist Mary Jo McConahay about her time covering the turmoil of Central America in the late 1980s.
To explore Shebooks for yourself visit shebooks.net or search for their titles on your e-reader. Subscriptions are available for $7.95 per month for tablets and smartphones, which allows you to read any of the books published by Shebooks, and individual Shebooks purchases ($2.99 each) can be made on all e-readers.