This week, sex and relationship columnist Zachary Zane discusses his new essay collection Boyslut: A Memoir and Manifesto, named a Most Anticipated LGBTQ+ Book of the Year by Buzzfeed. This conversation originally took place June 6, 2023 and was recorded live at the American Writers Museum.
Content Warning: this conversation contains explicit language related to sexual themes. Listener discretion is advised.
A sex and relationship columnist bares it all in a series of essays—part memoir, part manifesto—that explore the author’s coming-of-age and coming out as a bisexual man and move toward embracing and celebrating sex unencumbered by shame.
As a boy, Zachary Zane sensed that all was not right when images of his therapist naked popped into his head. Without an explanation as to why, a deep sense of shame pervaded these thoughts. Though his therapist assured him a little imagination was nothing to be ashamed of, over the years, society told him otherwise.
Boyslut is a series of personal and tantalizing essays that articulate how our society still shames people for the sex that they have and the sexualities that they inhabit. Through the lens of his bisexuality and much self-described sluttiness, Zane breaks down exactly how this sexual shame negatively impacts the sex and relationships in our lives, and through personal experience, shares how we can unlearn the harmful, entrenched messages that society imparts to us.
From stories of drug-fueled threesomes and risqué Grindr hookups to insights on dealing with rejection and living with his boyfriend and his wife, Boyslut is reassuring and often painfully funny—but is most potently a testimony that we can all learn to live healthier lives unburdened by stigma.