A Review of The Internet Escort's Handbook Book 1: The Foundation
I first met Amanda at The Marketing Whore
, and once we began talking, she sent me her book. I have to say that I wasn't super excited at first. Not just because my reading pile is well, not actually a pile at all, but a mountain range threatening avalanche, but because I've read a few other books & ebooks on this subject and I was greatly disappointed with them. Most authors are so, apparently, threatened by possible legal action that the books become so vague as to be useless; similarly become the ones written by those who clearly have not had any actual sex work experience. And a few are either so poorly written or such a sad collection of generalized stereotypes that they are not worth anyone's time. Typically, this genre of how-tos leaves me mourning the out of print status of Magalene Meretrix's book
But Amanda's book is, in a word, brilliant.
The Internet Escort's Handbook, Book 1 The Foundation: Basic Mental, Emotional & Physical Considerations in Escort Work is the first book in the Internet Escort' Handbook series by Amanda Brooks, and as I said, it is brilliant.
From front disclaimer to the end previews of coming attractions (other books in the series), this book is as delightful to read as it is informative. Finally, sane thoughts and information on escorting as a profession for those who are considering such a career!
I was particularly thrilled to have Amanda say, "No matter what, listening and talking are your two most important skills as an escort. Really. Listening and talking." I can't stress enough how accurate and important that is. So many interested in escorting believe you have to look like Barbie and perform circus level sex antics to be successful in the business and neither is true. While I'm certain each (and the combination) has it's allure and financial reward, most men seeking escorts are looking for companionship with a real woman. And as Amanda divulges, the longest actual sex lasted during her appointments was a maximum of 15 minutes, so if you aren't a good companion, what else do you offer for the rest of the hour? (Or longer?)
I was thrilled to read the facts rather than the myths. In fact, Amanda has an entire chapter devoted to sex work myths & definitions ~ written with the utmost honesty and, where applicable, humor.
For example, the myth that "escort" is just another name for "prostitute". Amanda explains why this isn't so, and then tosses the cheeky ~ and true ~ "If you're selling a specific sexual activity for a certain amount of money, you're a prostitute. If you won't have sex with the man you're dating unless he buys you an expensive dinner, you're a (relatively cheap) prostitute."
The definition of hobbyists ("basically provider geeks") while amusing, covers the dangers of the hobby-pimps (hobbyists who think they can & should run your business because they've used sex worker services). Amanda rightly compares them to anyone telling Bill Gates how to run Microsoft, simply because they use a few of his programs. Both amusing and accurate.
In the book, Amanda also gives what can only be described as sound beauty tips for any women who is looking to attract (or at least not repel) men. If the feminist in you bridles at the mention of appealing to a man's eye, that's OK; neither Amanda or I are saying you have to... But the appearance tips for escorts certainly won't hurt a woman who is looking.
Along with the basics of what you'll do, how you'll do it, who you might do it with, and how you might want to give thought to how you'll handle your own reactions to it all, Amanda covers very pragmatic issues such as health and safe sex practices, how to set personal boundaries, what to do with used condoms, how to deal with your period as an escort, and how to take care of & replenish yourself emotionally. All items for your escort to-do list as well as excellent food for thought.
And I think it's the "food for thought" which makes me the most appreciative... Thank you, Amanda, for putting such a grande amount of thought into this book.
Amanda's advice is, by her own admission, based on her own experiences as an escort, as well as from interviews with other escorts and clients. While I had a few differing experiences of my own, especially regarding working for an agency, Amanda's reasoning is well thought-out and presented, leaving little ambiguity and certainly speaks to the number one priority of safety.
Overall, this is one book that's as easy to review as it is to read. If you're entertaining the idea of becoming an escort, this book gives you the information to make an educated decision. And you shouldn't consider yourself really consenting to such work without making an informed, educated decision.
If you're just curious about who would become an escort, what they do etc., then you'll enjoy this book as well. And, if you're a woman who wonders why your husband or partner has (or might) use the services of a sex worker, you'll learn something as well.
In all honesty, this book could be read as a safe dating manual for the sexually active.
Knowing how to keep yourself emotionally and physically safe while being intimate is something every woman should know.
Title: The Internet Escort's Handbook, Book 1 The Foundation: Basic Mental, Emotional & Physical Considerations in Escort Work
Author: Amanda Brooks
Publisher: Golden Girl Press, LLC
You can find out more about Amanda at her blog, TexasGoldenGirl.com. And, you can listen live (as well as call in) to Amanda and Gracie on the XXBN's Cult of Gracie show on 5/58/2008 at 9 p.m. (central). (Additional show details here.)
© Gracie, who would also like to say that she does now, in fact, work with Amanda Brooks at SWOP-East. But before you go thinking that's why Amanda's book got such a rave review you should know it's quite the opposite: Amanda's brilliance convinced Gracie that she'd like to work with the brilliant Amanda Brooks and SWOP-East.