Tenacious: a zine of Art & Writings by Women in Prison

Tenacious is a zine filled with articles, essays, poetry and art by formerly and currently incarcerated women across the United States. Their works cover subjects like the health care (or lack of health care) system, being HIV-positive inside prison, trying to get an education while in prison, sexual harassment by prison staff and general prison conditions, and giving up children for adoption 1

The idea for Tenacious originated with several women incarcerated in Oregon in 2003. However, people inside prisons do not have access to printers, copy machines, massive amounts of postage and all the stuff that zinemakers on the outside may take for granted. So they approached me and asked if I would be the outside publisher. How could I say no?

For more history about the project, see

Issue 34 now available!

Issue 34, or the Mother's Day issue, is now available. It includes:

  • Three Strikes--Okie Style
  • part 2 of Mary Fish's investigation into pregnancy and parenting at Oklahoma's Mabel Bassett Correctional Center
  • death in solitary confinement
  • transferring to an overcrowded women's prison in Mississippi
  • incarcerated women fighting fires (and not getting credit for it)
  • coming home from prison--now what?
To get a copy, send $3 in well-concealed cash or a check made out to V. Law to:
PO Box 20388
New York, NY 10009

I have sold out of Issue 33 (Fall/Winter 2014).

But fear not! Copies of Issue 32 (Summer 2014) are still available. It includes:

  • what it means to be sentenced to life in prison
  • dispelling myths about murderers
  • women and abuse
  • living with celiac in prison
  • overcrowding in California's women's prisons
  • pregnancy and birth behind bars in Mississippi
and more!

You can also still get copies of Tenacious #31, which includes:artwork by Jenni Gannartwork by Jenni Gann

  • comparisons between women's prisons in Colorado and Kansas
  • how J-Pay makes it harder and more expensive to connect with family
  • "Mabel and Eddie's" or how two women's prisons in Oklahoma compare
  • a story told in Arizona women's prison every summer
  • "A Late Night Ride in the Morning"
  • raising children from behind prison walls
and more!

To get a copy, send $3 in well-concealed cash or a check made out to V. Law to:
PO Box 20388
New York, NY 10009

Note: If you are sending this to a person incarcerated in California, please ask them if they are allowed to receive publications with a dragon on the cover.

  • 1. Under the 1996 Federal Adoption and Safe Families Act, if a child is in foster care for 15 of the past 22 months, the state automatically terminates the parent’s legal rights. Many women in prison have sentences far exceeding 15 months AND the majority of them were single parents before entering prison.