Fast Fallen Women
75 Essays of Flash Nonfiction

Fast Fallen Women introduces 75 new essays about the dangerous and enthralling ways women fall—and how we get back on our feet, more deft, more decisive, and more daring than ever. Holding a compact mirror up to life with the same curiosity that enveloped Eve when she once held the apple, editor Gina Barreca’s latest inclusive collection of short, sharp, feminist pieces illuminate women’s courage, curiosity, and wit.

With new works by Amy Tan, Jane Smiley, Caroline Leavitt, Bobbie Anne Mason, Honor Moore, Darien Hsu Gee, Ilene Beckerman, and Lynn Peril.

From the Introduction:

To get anywhere, a woman must fall. You can fall by being tipsy, getting ahead of yourself, by missing a step. You can fall because there was a blind alley, a sharp curve, a slippery surface, or a stumbling block. You fall because somebody pulls the rug out from under you or because the whole time as you stood, believing you were on solid ground, there was a trapdoor directly beneath you.

Think of this collection of essays as a companion. Fallen women are often used as an object lesson, as the subject of a tutorial on how not to become her. This book is no such tutorial; it is a celebration. It encourages you to take risks. The risk of failure, rejection, humiliation—the risk of losing place for yourself entirely and not being able to get it back, of being seen as foolish, brazen, bitchy, grabby, and batshit crazy. Embrace the fall.

Buy the Book

Fast Fallen Women, Gina Barreca

Publication Information

Hardcover: 266 pages
Publisher: Woodhall Press
Publication Date: September 5, 2023
ISBN-10: 1954907788


“Barreca is sharp analyst of women’s humor…observant, witty, acerbic, and knowledgeable.” –Los Angeles Times

“You can count on Gina for essays that are fun, feminist, and provocative.” –Roz Warren in Women’s Voices for Change

“Barreca is an unfailingly winning narrator…” –Publishers Weekly

“Barreca learned to do what any sassy smartypants would: challenge stale ideas and press buttons.” –Chicago Tribune

“I always thought that some good looking guy like a young Sean Connery or Clark Gable at any age or same about Burt Lancaster—were God’s gift to women… But Gina is really God’s gift to women. She gives so much of herself and makes us all feel smart and funny and beautiful.” –Ilene Beckerman, NYT bestselling author of LOVE, LOSS, AND WHAT I WORE