Karen Pickering’s feminist writing has been published in print and online in outlets like The Guardian, Fairfax Media, Kidspot and elsewhere. Her books, About Bloody Time: The Menstrual Revolution We Have to Have (with Jane Barrett) and Doing It: Women Tell the Truth About Great Sex (editor) have received widespread praise.


About Bloody Time by Karen Pickering - Australia feminist books

About Bloody Time: The Menstrual Revolution We Have to Have

“About Bloody Time should be on bookshelves everywhere: I only wish it had been on mine when I was younger”

– Clementine Ford

About Bloody Time makes the case for menstrual revolution as an essential key to unlocking gender equality. Thousands of women and girls shared their experience of menstruation and menopause. The results were clear. Shame. Stigma. Humiliation. Disgust. Negative attitudes are pervasive, entrenched, and harmful.

This book digs deep into the menstrual taboo: where it exists, how it came to be and why it’s so resilient. Our culture asks women and girls to view their bodies through a prism of negativity and fear. We want to change that.

Co-authors Karen Pickering and Jane Bennett produced this much-needed and celebratory book with the support of the Victorian Women’s Trust.


Cover of Doing It edited by Karen Pickering - Feminist books Australi

Doing It: Women Tell the Truth about Great Sex

Women love sex. So why do we have such a difficult time accepting them as sexual creatures?

For a society that loves to project sex onto women, we’re not so keen on their free sexual expression. Doing It brings together some incredible female writers to reflect on why that might be, how they feel about sex, and why they love it. Women don’t get to talk about this, or hear it, enough.

Edited by renowned feminist Karen Pickering, Doing It celebrates women taking control of their sexual lives, with some brilliant writing on intimacy, physicality, gender and power. 

Featuring some of Australia’s most engaging voices, and some international stars, this exceptional collection combines the serious, the hilarious, the satirical, the personal, the political, and the downright sexy.


The Motherhood cover - edited by Jamila Rizvi - chapter by Karen Pickering

The Motherhood: Australian women share what they wish they’d known about life with a newborn

After her son was born, Jamila Rizvi felt isolated, exhausted and confused. While desperately in love with her new baby, the world she’d known had disappeared overnight and so had her sense of self.

Jamila’s salvation came in the form of a letter. A dear friend, Clare Bowditch – who had been there herself – wrote to tell Jamila she would get through this. Her comforting words reassured Jamila that she was seen, that she was supported and that she was not alone.

Now Jamila wants to pay it forward to the next generation of new mothers. The Motherhood is a collection of letters from some of Australia’s favourite women, sharing what they wish they’d known about life with a newborn. Coming from writers with a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences, no two stories are alike – but all are generous, compassionate and deeply honest.

From The Heart: Women of Letters - Karen Pickering chapter

From the Heart: Women of Letters

‘Letters, we have witnessed firsthand, stir some unusually beautiful things in people,’ write Women of Letters curators Marieke Hardy and Michaela McGuire. In From the Heart, the full power of letter-writing is on display.

Rock star Amanda Palmer thanks a song for reminding her of the importance of music, and the importance of love. Torn between wanting to encourage and wanting to warn, Senator Penny Wong tells of the ‘amazing highs and terrible lows’ of choosing a career in Australian politics. Beloved chef and author Stephanie Alexander writes of the shining moment when she received a letter from her hero Elizabeth David. And thirty years since they got married – and fifteen years since they broke up – Derryn Hinch writes with love and celebration for his dearest friend, Jacki Weaver.

Uplifting, passionate and compelling, From the Heart is a wonderful new collection from your favourite Australians of note.


Rachel Griffiths and Toni Collette in Muriel's Wedding - Karen Pickering

ARTICLE: Muriel's Wedding is a feminist masterpiece and more relevant than ever

The Guardian Australia.

“How would you classify Muriel’s Wedding? The “romantic comedy” genre is one I love and respect, but it’s a little inadequate to describe a movie as rich and complex as this. After all, how many romcoms result in the heroine rejecting the once-pined-for love interest and deciding instead that the most important person in her life is her female best friend?…’

Sanitary products including tampons and pads - Karen Pickering feminist

ARTICLE: The taboo around menstruation and menopause doesn't only hurt women

The Guardian Australia

“Telling people you’re writing a book on menstruation and menopause is a great litmus test for the strength of the menstrual taboo. Most often, people skip a beat and force a weird smile, before saying something non-committal like “good for you”. Or they laugh nervously (especially men) and say, “Oh wow, OK, not something I know too much about ha ha ha.” They rarely say, “I am completely disgusted by this” but you can usually tell if there’s a reluctance to delve deeper, or a squick factor at work.”

Harry Styles at an event - Karen Pickering feminist

ARTICLE: People don’t believe me when I say I named my son after Harry Styles


“People don’t believe me when I say I named my son after Harry Styles. What we name our children is so emotional, and so significant, that the general reaction is one of disbelief that I would approach such an important decision with such frivolity and glibness. Is it because he’s a popstar? I don’t think so. I’ve met babies called Elvis, Bowie and Elton. Is it because I’m too old to be a One Direction fan? You’re getting closer..”