100 Women, 100 Stories: Mey Rude

Where do you live? Los Angeles, CA

What is your profession? Trans Editor and Music Editor at Autostraddle.com and Consultant/Editor on comics and books.

How did you get your job at Autostraddle and what was your path leading up to this? Well, I submitted an essay I wrote to Autostraddle.com and they published it, and they liked my writing so they asked me to write more for them, and eventually they hired me, and I kept on working hard for them and writing more and getting more responsibilities and now I’m in charge of the Trans and Music content. I started consulting on comic books that my friends worked on with trans characters in them and then it turned into a paid gig. Honestly, being friends with and making connections with other women has been responsible for so much of my job and where I am with my life right now. I wouldn’t be here without the support and opportunities I’ve gotten from friends.

What did you study in school? English Language and Literature. I started college as a poli sci major but I realized that I hated not reading books and writing essays all the time so I changed.

Has anyone been a mentor to you? What role did they play and how do you feel about mentorship now? Definitely some of my senior editors at Autostraddle, specifically Heather Hogan. She’s the most brilliant writer I know and the best editor I know and she’s helped me become a better writer, editor and person in every single way.

What’s the hardest thing that you’ve had to deal with in your career so far? This is probably an answer you’ll get from a lot of women, but definitely it’s Imposter Syndrome. The idea that I don’t deserve to have my voice in the same spaces as more established or better paid or louder writers is something I deal with all the time. As a queer trans woman of color it’s easy to notice that a lot of people don’t want to hear from me at all, so I need to constantly remind myself that I deserve a space at the table and there are lots of people who are happy to see me there.

What has been a really rewarding moment in your career? Definitely meeting my heroes and them telling me that my work has moved them. It’s amazing to see people who I admire, people who constantly move and inspire me with their work tell me the same thing is true about the things I write.

What do you want to accomplish in your lifetime? I want to publish a book, specifically a graphic novel.

What’s something you want young women to remember when thinking about their future? They’re more important than men.

What’s one thing you want to try to make an impact on in your lifetime? I want to make an impact on my friends. I want them to know I love them and I want them to be able to accomplish their wildest dreams partially because I was there supporting them.

Find May on Twitter @meyrude