Name: Billie Rain (William Maria Rain / Erika Reinstein)
Description: billie is a disabled writer, activist and filmmaker. years of chronic illness and a rare tumor condition have given hir an amazing sense of groundedness, connection and self-advocacy that fuel hir passion to bring truth, in all it’s pain and glory, to audiences everywhere.
- Fix this Mess
- Screenwriter’s Toolkit: 101 Screenwriting Exercises
- the healing journey as a site of resistance
- Talking to spirits
- I write this without a mothertongue
- My silence was golden, but now it’s gone
- I’ve got angels in my head
- Poet tongues on fire (2002)
- Butterfly Girl (2001)
- Caprice (2000)
- Strength (2000)
- Epiphany (2000)
- Learning to fly (1998)
- Challenging Racism Resource Booklet (1999)
- Smother Love (1998)
- From a Wounded Woman (1997)
- I Know What You Did To Me (1996)
- Cross My Heart (hope to die) (1994)
- I Love You More (1993)
- an activist approach to domestic violence,
- Midwest Girl Fest (1996)
- riot grrrl dc and olympia
- Fantastic Fanzine (1992)
- Fix me
- Marika #3 (1993)
- Planting Seeds Community Awareness Project (3.12.01)
- wrecking ball
- on the road to healing
- riot grrrrl new york
- secret weapon
- big boots zine – sista resista – spring 2003 – for jenn
- girl germs – “click”
- hands off – hello!
- spirals upward – fairway apartments
- with our hearts with our voices – FUCK CYNICISM.
- bridges issue of bint el nas – my encompassed heart
fix this mess: selections 1993 – 2010 is a collection of poetry and art by billie rain.
“fix this mess is a gorgeous book. the themes that run through it are singular while speaking to the universal. the language is precise and unique, the content is intense and brave. you need this book. we all do.” – danielle (dani) montgomery (author of “the woman you write poems about,” civil defense poetry)
There are plenty of resources that will tell you how to write, what to write and how to sell what you’ve written. Screenwriter’s Toolkit: 101 Screenwriting Exercises will help you practice your writing skills. If you’re experiencing writer’s block, use the exercises to get your creative juices flowing.
Written by Basil Shadid & Billie Rain, Screenwriter’s Toolkit is a 136 page book, based on the popular Screenwriter’s Toolkit blog. Rewritten from the ground up, It features 101 exercises that will help you develop your craft.
50 of the 101 exercises from the book appear on the Screenwriter’s Toolkit Blog. Check it out.
the healing journey as a site of resistance (August 9 – 11, 2002)
this transcript is from a presentation given by billie rain at The Fifth Annual Ritual Abuse, Secretive Organizations and Mind Control Conference, at the DoubleTree Hotel in Windsor Locks, CT. which is also available on tape through the SMART website
billie rain is a survivor of familial abuse, ritual abuse, mind control and experimentation. She works to build bridges between survivors and other activists working for social change. She believes child abuse must be challenged as part of larger oppressive systems and survivors have vital insight and wisdom to contribute to movements working for social justice.
Talking to spirits
Child Abuse, Violence against Women and Children, Sexual Abuse, Ritual abuse, Survival, Healing, Poetry, Activism
I write this without a mothertongue
Perzine, Abuse, Child abuse, Survival, Ethnicity, Resistance, Poetry
My silence was golden, but now it’s gone
Child Abuse, Ritual Abuse, Violence against Women and Children, Sexual Abuse, Survival
“i’ve got angels in my head” – 1996 zine about Dissociative Identity Disorder
a friend of mine may be has multiple personality disorder. Sometimes I try and think that we all just have different personalities inside of us, and maybe hers are just more extreme. …The zine helped me to understand that what she is dealing with is really different from me, and that it probably isn’t helpful for me to minimize her experience. That there are ways I can relate my experiences without minimizing hers. Sometime I just want everything to be not so hard. I don’t want to accept that my friends have been through such terrible shit, even though I know they have. I recomend this zine, even if you don’t know anyone with multiple personalitys. It also has things that are good for understanding abuse survivors in general, and helpful things for survivors. – Cindy Crabb
Sexual Abuse, Child Abuse, Rape, Torture, Survival, Violence against Women, Mental Health, Multiple Personality Disorder
Poet tongues on fire (2002)
Billie Rain & Basil (Shadid)
Poetry, LGBT, Queer issues
Butterfly Girl 2001
Perzine, Abuse, Survival, Mental / Physical Health, Disease, FMS Fibromyalgia
Caprice 2000 (?)
Perzine, Ritual abuse, Sexual Abuse, Child abuse, Survival, Mind control, Torture, Rape, Violence, Incest, Poetry
Strength 2000 (?)
Child Abuse, Violence against Women and Children, Sexual Abuse, Ritual Abuse, Survival, Healing, Mental Health, Disability, Dissociative identity disorder, Depression, Post traumatic stress disorder, Poetry, Class, Self injury, Riot Grrrl, Activism
Perzine, Ritual abuse, Sexual Abuse, Child abuse, Survival, Rape, Violence, Incest
Learning to fly (1998)
Perzine, Sexual Abuse, Ritual Abuse, Child Abuse, Survival, Healing, Mental Health, Violence against Women, Family
Challenging Racism Resource Booklet (1999)
Racism, White Supremacy, White Privilege, Whiteness
Smother Love (1998)
Child Abuse, Ritual Abuse, Mother abuse, Sexual Abuse, Survival, Healing
From a Wounded Woman 1997
Child Abuse, Violence against Women and Children, Sexual Abuse, Ritual abuse, Survival, Classism
I Know What You Did To Me 1996 (?)
Perzine, Sexual Abuse, Child Abuse, Ritual Abuse, Survival, Torture, Rape, Race, Ethnicity, Racism
Cross My Heart (hope to die) 1994
Perzine, Violence, Ritual Abuse, Child Abuse, Incest, Rape, Survival
I Love You More 1993
Sexual abuse, Child Abuse, Rape, Survival
- riot grrrl dc and olympia
From Planting Seeds
Midwest Girl Fest (1996)
Kerry, Sarah Miryam Aharon-Wood, Sarah K., Shayna, Val, Erika Reinstein, Jessica Soilaeu, Michelle, Stephanie, Heather Lynn, Jenny
Riot Grrrl, Ladyfest, Feminism, Empowerment, Sexism, Racism, Classism, Violence against Women, Rape, Women’s Health, Mental Health
Fantastic Fanzine (1992)
…hmmm, well there were several things I wanted to accomplish through this zine;
- give my friends an outlet to express themselves cause they’re all totally cool,
- create an open forum for all kinds of expression- from art (which there is a serious lack of), to creative and personal writing, to political stuff and punk/music stuff,
- print peoples personal experiences with different subjects such as racism, abuse and violence. I think personal experience, to really talk about it, is very important. We talk so much in theoretical terms, but yet many times I don’t feel comfortable even in the most ‘liberal’ group saying “yeah, I know all about that. here’s how it happened…” Why is that?
- Get healthy because its sort of a cleansing- I get to write about what I think and what’s happened to me in my life and get it all straightened out on paper
- learn about doing stuff like layouts and all that. Apply the Do It Yourself principle of punk rock and see if it really works,
- HAVE LOTS OF FUN!! (i am, i am!).
Well now go on and read this but make sure you send letters/zines/contributions/anything else! (please)…
Billie Rain & Jo
Riot Grrrl, LGBT, Queer issues, Lesbianism, Girl Love, Sisterhood, Abuse, Rape, Sexism
…i keep thinking about the word “heart” and what that means to me and how when i concentrate on where the heart is supposed to be inside my body it feels all clenched up and small and i’m just not sure if it’s even there. the heart shape i heard is actually a female symbol and not my beatingbeating heart but my cunt so i wonder why ♥this♥ symbol is called heart. maybe so we can all relate to it a secret girl power symbol maybe because the meaning was distorted or lost over time maybe the two hearts are supposed to be connecting rods love/fuck but maybe not…
Marika #3 (1993)
Erika Reinstein & May Summer Riot Grrrl Press
Perzine, Riot Grrrl, Punk, Politics, Sexism, Child abuse, Sexual abuse, Poetry, Privilege, Racism, Classism, Stereotypes, Queer issues, Sisterhood
…there was once this girl who had a burning in her tummy. and it felt like this burning thing was gonna eat her alive sometimes. she had to stop it but there was no way except for staying at home all day nursing open sores.
fingers to keys. type out the thing inside…
Planting Seeds Community Awareness Project (3.12.01)
Activism, Politics, Class, Civil Rights, Violence against Women, White Privilege, Sexual Abuse, Racism, Poetry, Survival, Work, DIY Do-It-Yourself, Resistance, White Privilege, Suicide, Empowerment, Anti-Capitalism, Alternative Living,
…eliminate all forms of the verb “to be.”
- all those years
it choked my subconscious
mind the knowledge
locked down guarded by
pieces of me.
my captors so
creative the imagery they
used so vivid to
maintain control to
make me mindless…
for the child who should have been me
oh my baby
i will touch your soft throat
it will not hurt this time
i will stroke your insides
there are no razors
at the ends of my fingers
i am soft, like you
i will never choke you while you sleep
i will try not to hurt you
we can cry together.
its a loss that we cant be one
i should have been one
we should have been together
ill never be able to look into your eyes
but i can hold you.
Perzine, Child abuse, Ritual abuse, Mental Health problems, Dissociative identity disorder, Multiple Personality Disorder, Torture, Violence, Survival, Healing
some zines i’ve contributed to:
- on the road to healing;
- riot grrrrl new york;
- secret weapon;
On The Road To Healing: An Anthology for Men Against Sexism is a pro-feminist anthology for men working to end sexism. Originally published as a series of zines between 1995 and 2004, the works inside have served as a resource and as a challenge to all men who want a world that is free from oppression and war.
• Sam Pullen
• Donald Cavanaugh
• Jeff Ott
• Tony Switzer
• Loolwa Khazzoom
• Chris Dixon
• Qwo-Li Driskill
• Ahimsa Timoteo Bodhrán
• Cameron Bustamante
• Todd Denny
• Basil Shadid
• billie rain
• Chris Crass
• Michael Flood
This is a zine put out by anti-authoritarian and other radically progressive people of color, and “is intended primarily as a tool for people of color to recognize, more redily, oppressive forces at play in our lives in order to begin the work of healing from them.”
I think it is also a good resource for white people to recognize their own racism, and ways that racism plays out in this fucked up world.
big boots zine – sista resista – spring 2003 – for jenn
i’ll hone my love
to a chisel
gently casting off
your intricate layers
reaching the soft center
of your grief
i’ll expand generously
& protect fiercely
your tender heart
girl germs – “click”
…the sound of when it’s time to move on. i hear it when i’m talking to him about IT. but really there are about one thousand ITs only he sees them as one unit. he’s tired of hearing about IT and he hasn’t so directly yet but i’ve heard it over and over…
hands off – hello!
…i told heather lynn that i would write an article for her zine about activism and mental health, which is something i have a lot of ideas about, but somehow i feel like i won’t be able to explain myself all cohesive and shit, but then again
fuck being put together
as heather lynn says…
spirals upward – fairway apartments
Perzine, Politics, Feminism, Pro-feminist Men’s Movement, Male feminists, Sexual Violence, Rape, Sexual Abuse, Bicycle, Racism, Activism
…in the moment of grabbing the
brown paint wooden doorhandle i
fresh air in
for the race updown stairs…
with our hearts with our voices – FUCK CYNICISM.
…I KNOW SINCERITY IS NOT HIGHLY VALUED IN MY CULTURE BUT I CAN SAY THIS A THOUSAND MORE TIMES UNTIL IT MEANS SOMETHING TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU. I WILL STAND ON A THOUSAND STAGES IN EVERY FUCKING TOWN AND SAY MY PARENTS RAPED ME, MY PARENTS TORTURED ME AND I LIVED TO TELL ABOUT IT. AND THERE WILL ALWAYS BE SOMEONE THINKING
this means something to me…
bridges issue of bint el nas – my encompassed heart
…my heart carries me across continents
north to south and back again
a goddamn ancestral compass
always pointing, pointing north from south…
losers (Noember 22, 2015)
…if your story is dull
water on stone
wearing you down until…
equations (August 27, 2015)
…the arithmetic of lies
2 + 2 = believe me
2 + 2 = i will save you
2 + 2 = don’t worry your pretty little head
i came to help
don’t fight it…
for frida (and the angels standing guard ’round the side of my bed) (January 9, 2015)
…stretch towards me
tell me your secrets
did you walk
did you walk…
i’m pain’s bitch (February 14, 2014)
…thank you pain
feminist football fan – final podcast (September 5, 2013)
in honor of the 2013 nfl kickoff, i’ve dug up my “feminist football fan” podcast files and am releasing this final interview:listen to basil interview me in 2010 about loving football and men.
i had to cancel my podcast as my lung condition was worsening and i had to basically stop talking for a while.
who are you people? (August 22, 2013)
…i love making complications
like when you ask
who are your people?…
harridan (May 29, 2013)
she sits in the crooked branches of a maple tree
surveying the wilderness that surrounds her ordinary body.
she imagines herself strong and fast like a horse
with soft ebony eyes and muscled flesh.
you say it doesn’t matter (March 21, 2013)
…why they left or came.
did they break like waves on the shores of
where did they land?
where did they come from?
you say it doesn’t matter…
(i wrote this around 2005, when i was stuck in a cycle of poverty, homelessness and exclusion.)
i’ve been struggling with this article for months now. there are so many things that i need to say about ableism and i don’t even know where other people are at in thinking about this shit. like other forms of oppression, i struggle against social messages that it’s a personal problem and responsibility. and while i know that’s bullshit, somehow talking about my personal experiences, particularly within the “social services,” feels extremely uncomfortable. i don’t see much out there written by and about poverty-stricken disabled people, and we’re really going through a lot! i know that i’m one of the lucky ones, because i have a partner who supports us, even though we’re still poor, we have a place to live.
so much needs to be said about the topic of ableism. my intention is to be a voice contributing to what’s already out there. these are the thoughts that are most pressing to me right now. i hope they will challenge, validate and energize you.
hysteria (November 18, 2012)
…i’m yeshua on the cross
nailed to this unholy body
stiff in my pain
i cry out…
no quarter (November 12, 2012)
…i was born from a wound
ripped open womb
i was born a wound
from my mother’s engorged womb…
an open letter to rape culture (September 12, 2012)
…You have silenced too many of us for too long! this is all out fucken WAR, man, and you are gonna lose! I am tired of standing in shame, stooped over and eyes closed. I do not weaken in your everpresence, rape culture. I do not let your disease infect me with hatred and mistrust of other human beings.
You are not REAL, you are a product of society!…
originally published in 1995
i write this without a mothertongue (June 16, 2012)
…my paper bag face magnified
mercilessly in the looking glass.
honey slides seamlessly down my
features searching under its golden
hues for the tangle of my history…
night thoughts in the morning (May 10, 2012)
a lot of nights I spend hours treating symptoms that are keeping me from falling asleep.
I still don’t see my way through this, but I’m focusing on radical acceptance and being happy. it’s weird, because I think I’m a lot happier than most people even though I’m in a pretty extreme health situation and may not survive. i feel bad for people with unhappy lives. I wish I could bring everyone where I am because I truly enjoy what life offers me.
I think this is the wisdom of the dying. which should scare me I guess. but I do think there is a chance I could live a long time. the coin is up in the air right now.
tending to my symptoms, getting some cranberry juice.
late at night (April 25, 2012)
…i wait for that magic moment when
pain and my exhaustion meet,
and exhaustion triumphs…
i am not a patriot (April 24, 2012)
i think my first act of rebellion against the united states was when i was seven and in second grade, and i refused to stand for the pledge of allegiance. looking back, it’s clear to me why i had even personal reasons to resent being forced to declare my loyalty to that scrap of cloth and all it represents, but what kind of thoughts does a seven year old think that necessitate such a refusal?
next time (for james) (March 19, 2012)
i hope i am a farm beast
born in hay
to callused hands…
if this poem (August 28, 2011)
…if this poem was a magpie
it would steal your jewelry
and leave you laughing…
war (June 3, 2011)
…i define my selves as metamorphosis, frantically flapping wings,
singing hymns and prayers of peace. tiny in this cruel empire,
i move out from the heart in each precious moment…
cain and abel (May 22, 2011)
you tenacious thing
you tiny sun
pieces (April 16, 2011)
does not the broken
sand dollar have it’s own cracked
beauty in wholeness?
my chronic illness bill of rights (March 4, 2011)
…I HAVE THE RIGHT…
to the full range of emotional responses to my experiences—from self-pity to gratitude and everything in between…
if you are under the weather and the weather is pummeling you (November 18, 2010)
…pain is symbolic of something.
pain is a directional isthmus.
there is a goal.
any specialist can tell you that.
you poor suffering, ignorant, pounding thing…
for the child who should have been me (September 27, 2010)
…oh my baby
i will touch your soft throat
it will not hurt this time
i will stroke your insides…
she (August 9, 2010)
in a cage she lies restless. slithers back and forth across dirty concrete, the brown dust streaking hips, knees, sternum. she is both dark and light, shifting incessantly to the rhythm of blood pumping, systolic, diastolic.
ta-tum ta-tum ta-tum ta-tum
fear (July 30, 2010)
you’ve come to visit me again.
terror you thrill me
disabled brains? (July 28, 2010)
…“Werner has patients who were born with disabled brains from which he has removed as much as a whole hemisphere.”
this sentence came from an article in shambhala sun about—what else?—a brain surgeon. there is no explanation or justification of the concept of disabled brains and why they need to be operated on…
insomnia poem (May 15, 2010)
mixed-race manifest (April 13, 2010)
…I WILL honor my ancestors, all of them
I WILL NOT use my ethnicity as a bargaining chip
I WILL define myself according to my own realities
I WILL NOT be defined by how others perceive my phenotype
I WILL seek community with other mixed-race folks
I WILL NOT be forced, or attempt to force others, into rigid racial categories…
preview to weekend two (March 12, 2010)
it’s friday afternoon and tomorrow i pick up the director’s gauntlet and jump back into the fray. i’ve never directed a narrative film before so this is all strange and new to me. last weekend went well, overall, although it was a HUGE challenge for me. i spent most of the week physically recuperating, and then screwed myselfs by going to value village yesterday.
book meme (March 9, 2010)
1. What author do you own the most books by?
Thich Nhat Hahn, bell hooks and Tamora Pierce
2. What book do you own the most copies of?
i’ve owned many copies of The Fifth Sacred Thing and Love in Action
some thoughts about communication (February 22, 2010)
i’ve been following the discussions on the disabled feminists website lately, and there is all this weird controversy with them because they “dared” to call someone out for exploiting people with disabilities by pretending to be conjoined twins with a history of child pornography. it’s hard for me to imagine what the fuss is about, this project is obviously majorly problematic! all i have to do is describe the project and everyone around me collapses and starts moaning…
a poem i wrote! (December 3, 2009)
& one day my heart grew wings of fire it burned a hole straight through my shirt & i was standing with all my love exposed for the world to see she drew me into her blazing center & shot me directly to the sun & i exploded in a million tiny flames which lodged themselves in the hearts of every person who lives- past present & future: a fiery web held us all within it’s grasp our connection resting gently in our chests a divine seed each containing the pattern of the entire universe.
fierce bodies makes non-toxic personal care products for anyone who wants to keep their body fiercely natural, especially those of us who can’t use chemical fragrances or toxins.
- 3 steps to organizing a fragrance-free event plus text version
- 10 tips on becoming chemical free
- your perfume stinks!
- myths and facts about chemical sensitivity (by Peggy Munson)
- how to be fragrance-free (by Peggy Munson)
- How to be Scent-free at Public Events
Dual Power Productions is an entertainment company in Seattle, Washington. We produce media that promotes understanding, critical thinking, personal development, and social change. Our work can be serious, fun, thought-provoking, educational, and absurd. We use a multi-faceted transmedia approach to getting the message out.
What’s the message? In the words of Alice Walker, “Surely the earth can be saved by all the people who insist on love.” In the words of Utah Phillips, “You’ve got to mess with people!”
- eulogy for bassim chmait
- feminists long for men to heal (quote by starhawk)
- gender neutral bathroom flyer
- hard time scale
- Making Events More Accessible for People with EMS (Electro Magnetic Sensitivities) by Julie Weber
- MCS accessibility basics plus text version
- oftentimes have i heard you speak of one who commits a wrong as if he were not one of you (quote by khalil gibran)
- statement of the people of color and mixed-race caucus from the queer disability conference, 2002
- Supporting Survivors of Sexual Assault with Disabilities plus text version
- sex while gimped
i have an online diary where i publish a lot of my creative writing, but i’ve decided to put up some of my favorite writing and visual art here.
In this struggle for RACE, COLOR, and RELIGIOUS purity we … Jews have been caught.
I am Sephardic. I didn’t realize this until well into my adulthood. Partially this is because of my family’s intention to “pass” and assimilate into white christian America, also because of the utter obscurity of any information concerning Jews from outside Eastern Europe. I have always been confused about my ethnic identity, and as an adult have been searching for clues to fit my ancestry with the racialized experiences I’ve had. As I was beginning my search, I called my grandfather looking for information for my project. My relationship with my father’s family is strained at best, and I was trembling as I dialed the phone. “Grandpa? I’m working on a research project about Sephardic Jews, and I was wondering about a particular ancestor that my dad told me about who is supposed to be really famous. Do you know who I’m talking about?”
*indicates the picture may be triggering for survivors of abuse
recently i completed a book of collages about the abuse i experienced as a child. i’m including some of them here. taken in order, they tell a story about the way i see that asapect of my past.
needless to say, they are likely to be triggering, so please use caution when you look at them.
my inside family ♥
…there isn’t really a delicate way to say this. i have multiple personalities. i set this space aside to honor my inside family and to acknowlege the survival mechanism that enabled me to survive through a childhood that could have killed me…
hi. my name is LG, that’s short for little girl. i’m one of billie’s inside family and i have some things to say about myself! so click on this link right here!
and here’s a really intense poem that billie wrote for me. billie always writes intense poems. but it’s good.
a poem i wrote for francesca
here are some resources that you might find helpful if you want to know more about multiple personalities or if you’re a mulltiple and are looking for resources or support.
Cuckoo Comics. This comic was created by Madison Clell and is totally brilliant. At times both heartbreaking and irreverent, this comic is excellent as art, and essential as a portrait of one multiple’s experiences.
The Multiplicity, Abuse & Healing Network is an excellent site and was created by a fellow survivor and multiple named Pat.
Sidran Online. The Sidran Institute helps people understand, manage, and treat trauma and dissociation. They have a great book catalog.
Also, at planting seeds, we have a whole section of resources about dissociation in our resource section!