“My president is Black; my nails are painted blue, I don’t know how I went this long in life without you.”

For the first time, I’ve seen my life- the real me, living in this modern day as a young intellectual woman of color represented on your web pages. Thanks to Clutch founder, Deanna “Dede” Sutton and her relentless vision for what Clutch can be – witty, wild, limitless – I get the greater privilege of being able to contribute to making Clutch even more “Clutchier”: content that I hope is loved as much by readers as I love laboring over it.

As Black women, we are quick to be marginalized in mainstream media, viewed as disease having, Black men hating, squad of single welfare mothers who are in all instances angry. A primary example of why it’s important for us to craft our own narratives. The real is, we are as varied as flavors of jelly belly and come in as many colors. Our interests extend beyond how we can trap a man in ten days or which cut of denim will accentuate our collective phat ass. Clutch indulges its dear reader by seeking out the absolute antithesis to typical Black women magazine content by observing, analyzing and finally questioning its realistic relevancy to a lady living out loud in 2009.

Most magazines have to spend gross amounts of energy discussing who their reader is and figuring out how to appeal to their tastes. In the case of Clutch, the writers are the reader, and because Clutch has opted to buck traditional publication by remaining online and independent, there is a constant flow of original ideas between authors and subscribers that happens in real time on Clutch, with message boards-letting us know if, at an editorial level, Clutch has succeeded in its efforts to inform, entertain, engage and enlighten.

So thank you Clutch, for being the prototype. You are more than a magazine to me. You are the Vitamin C in my OJ, the press in my curl. Here’s to another year of breaking all boundaries when it comes to being the premier lifestyle portal online for African-American women.

XOXO. Nat.

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