Opening Up

This amazing book is a beast — almost a quarter million words!

It includes the following interviews, done for BME between 1995 and 2008: Jon Cobb, Tom Brazda, Anne Greenblatt, CM Hurt, Piercers “Behind the Scenes”, Keith Alexander, Dr. Robert Stubbs, Kristian White, Reverend Drew Lewis, Fabiola, Erik Sprague, Todd Bertrang, Patrick Bartholomew, Anders Sandberg, Mick Noland, Reverend Mad Jack, Fakir Musafar, Urban Primitive, Fingerless “S”, Elayne Angel, Blair, Derek Lowe, Eizo Mamiya, Chaz “No Hand”, “Adding and Subtracting”, “Fingernails”, Steve-O, “Joshua”, A Modified Man in the Air Force, Fish Piercing, Todd Huffman, “Homo Raelianis”, Eyelid Piercing, Kerra Fowler, Punch-and-Taper Piercing, James Sooy, “The Customer is Always… Angry”, “The Customer is Always… Suicidal”, “The Customer is Always… Perverted”, “The Customer is Always… Stinky”, Love at First Bite, Ben on Dermal Anchoring, Johnny Brought His [Tattoo] Gun, Michelle the Pass Around Girl, FK, The Indestructible Man, Magnetic Vision, Alvar Saenz-Otero, Ashley Crawford, Leen’s Half Foot, Howie, Toph, One Hand Jason, Fabrizio Divari, DJ Minor, G.C., Boff Konkerz, Daniel DiMattia, Jae the Scratcher, Johnny Thief, Anders the Piercing Guy, Vincent Hocquet, Trepanation, Frances Sand, “Semi-Voluntary”, “De-Fingered”, Allen Falkner, Mohan Gurung, Jacki Randall, John Joyce, and Got Your Nose.

There’s really a lot of amazing body modification content in here, and now that BME has chosen to delete this archive of articles, this is the only place you can get them. Because my goal is to make sure this content is always available, it’s released under a creative commons license and you can download the complete 460 page PDF file here for free (this also means you can reprint it yourself).

It’s 460 pages in a 6″x9″ trade format. Two versions are available (click to purchase):

Softcover for $19.99
Hardcover for $34.99

Here are a few samples, and you can of course download the PDF for more (and you can click here to see my softcover copy and look at the real thing to review the quality):


  1. klem wrote:

    Great! glad to have your interviews back! The pdf li_nk is broken though :’(

    Friday, November 21, 2008 at 2:37 am | Permalink
  2. oizys wrote:

    not borken, just needs a bit of fixing. :) here you go:

    Friday, November 21, 2008 at 4:03 am | Permalink
  3. Shannon wrote:

    Thanks — just a typo — fixed the PDF link.

    Friday, November 21, 2008 at 5:19 am | Permalink
  4. I am reading the PDF version of the book, and am on page 55. I have found a few typos, I’m not sure if it will be the same in the books themselves, but I’d look on fixing that. No, I am not a perfectionist, I just like perfect grammar. =]

    Saturday, November 22, 2008 at 8:49 am | Permalink
  5. Shannon wrote:

    SNM511 – Other than correcting for spelling, I haven’t edited the interviews from what they were originally… Both because I want to preserve what was printed at first, and because it’s a literal transcription of what the person wrote/said to me.

    THAT SAID — if you see stuff tat you think should be corrected, please do drop me a line. The nice thing about this type of publishing is it’s easy to revise minor issues.

    Saturday, November 22, 2008 at 11:18 am | Permalink
  6. gaz wrote:

    ordered :)

    and im gonna hit up the PDF aswell, because im impatient. haha

    Sunday, November 23, 2008 at 12:48 pm | Permalink
  7. Alice wrote:

    I’ll be ordering one of these for sure, once I get paid.

    Monday, November 24, 2008 at 9:14 am | Permalink
  8. Melissa wrote:

    I’m excited to see that the quality of lulu’s books is so high. You’ve inspired me so much that I’m using lulu to publish a poetry book for my book design class! Thanks for the tip–this will be a LOT better than hand-binding or stapling together a chapbook.

    Wednesday, November 26, 2008 at 12:42 pm | Permalink
  9. Shannon wrote:

    Cool :) I was thinking about their cost-per-page for color stuff, and figured that doing a big color photo book yearly instead of a normal photo album would be cheaper and higher quality!

    Wednesday, November 26, 2008 at 12:48 pm | Permalink
  10. Nicole wrote:

    I’m with Alice!
    This will become a great stocking stuffer ;)

    Wednesday, November 26, 2008 at 8:39 pm | Permalink
  11. Dara wrote:

    Whee I got mine and I am so excited! I am letting a few friends borrow it and hopefully they will get some more insight into what this “body mod” thing is.

    Saturday, November 29, 2008 at 9:10 pm | Permalink
  12. Gemma wrote:

    I got mine today, but although it has your cover on it, the inside is something else!! “Het Jaar van de Maker” apparently!! How very bizarre! Here is an excerpt from it: “met rode wangen en licht openhangende mond had hij ingespannen gestaard naar de kleine aarden held die ombeurten geteisterd werd door rukwinden, een mini regenbuitje en hop het laatst zelfs door een vonkenregen.”
    Just going to email Lulu now to find out what happened!

    Thursday, December 4, 2008 at 3:03 pm | Permalink
  13. xPUREx wrote:

    What happened to me???? :(

    Sunday, December 28, 2008 at 7:01 pm | Permalink
  14. Ralex wrote:

    to gemma i can translate it for you.

    “Het Jaar van de Maker” apparently!! How very bizarre! Here is an excerpt from it: “met rode wangen en licht openhangende mond had hij ingespannen gestaard naar de kleine aarden held die ombeurten geteisterd werd door rukwinden, een mini regenbuitje en hop het laatst zelfs door een vonkenregen.”

    year of the maker

    with red cheeks and an open month, was e staring intensly to the litle clay hero who was being teased by a whipping, a litlle bit of rain, and in the last a little bit of falling fire.

    its dutch

    Sunday, February 15, 2009 at 4:30 pm | Permalink
  15. Ayla Kempe wrote:

    Where can i get this book and how much is it?

    thanks alot =]

    Wednesday, March 4, 2009 at 6:52 pm | Permalink
  16. Bošo wrote:

    Hi Shannon, I just wanted to thank you for sharing your books for free, for me it´s quite impossible to get them ordered ( I live in Slovakia and the shipping costs are 2x the price of a book ). They were a great read, “Opening up” had me slackin´my work, I just had to read it at any cost :)
    Keep up the good work !

    Saturday, July 4, 2009 at 1:28 am | Permalink
  17. Received my copy in the mail today. Lulu was lightening fast in filling my order. Thank you for putting this together and making it available. The people you interviewed, and the information they shared, are invaluable.

    Tuesday, August 25, 2009 at 10:48 pm | Permalink
  18. kristen wrote:

    does anyone know what ever happened to rev drew lewis?

    Friday, November 5, 2010 at 9:39 pm | Permalink


    Wednesday, December 7, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Permalink
  20. cam wrote:

    Hi I just downloads the PDF of opening up but can’t get it to open is there a program for tablets that is for PDF like this?

    Saturday, March 31, 2012 at 7:11 pm | Permalink
  21. Shannon wrote:

    Yeah, thete are many free option, Abode Acrobat being the obvious one. Should be in both the Apple App Store and in the Android Market. Or search the apps for “PDF”.

    Saturday, March 31, 2012 at 7:20 pm | Permalink
  22. Just received mine today! Thanks Shannon :)

    Tuesday, July 17, 2012 at 7:06 am | Permalink
  23. Derek Colebrook wrote:

    Hey Modded People
    I was delighted to be in Shannon’s ebook as Octoarse (page 250 or similar )He told my story very well and as a eunuch getting cut was a very hot experience !
    Cheers Derek

    Monday, April 1, 2013 at 9:02 pm | Permalink

9 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. [...] I think — the biggest book of interviews on the subject that’s available from anyone. Click here to get your own copy in either hardcover or softcover (or download the PDF for [...]

  2. Free shit Friday « The Doorstopper Blog on Friday, November 28, 2008 at 7:19 am

    [...] November 28, 2008 · No Comments Shannon Larratt (ex-modblog fame) has compiled all his old articles from BME in this book. It’s a pretty super for those into body mod type stuff. (Zentastic blogpost here) [...]

  3. [...] things to give for Christmas, and helping me afford Christmas, I just got the hardcopy version of my interview book. It’s really beautiful and the quality is great. Seeing it as a 460 page hardcover is really [...]

  4. beauty myths and personal choices « Aniareads Weblog on Saturday, December 13, 2008 at 8:04 am

    [...] with people from the industry and which I had an opportunity to re-read not that long ago in his ‘Opening Up’ book. It’s something one should keep in mind – the industry may look glamorous and cool from the [...]

  5. Eventful Day « Permafaust’s Blog on Wednesday, December 17, 2008 at 9:31 pm

    [...] But for now, it’s time for me to read my book. [...]

  6. BodBlog » Blog Archive » Opening Up by Shannon Larratt on Friday, December 19, 2008 at 6:42 am

    [...] Being a big fan of BME (when under the old management) I was thrilled to see that Shannon had compiled a book from all the archived interviews he did for BME (many of which have been removed from BME’s archives). I strongly encourage everyone that has mods to purchase a copy as there is a wealth of information in there, you can purchase a copy via Shannon’s Zentastic blog post here. [...]

  7. [...] proofed for publication. More interviews will go up tomorrow as well. And of course feel free to purchase the previous interview book to support these various [...]

  8. [...] recently revisited this excellent interview with Jon Cobb in Shannon Laratt’s ‘Opening Up‘. You can download the 460-page PDF for free, and the interview I’m quoting is the [...]

  9. [...] Dois livros de sua autoria são indispensáveis para os estudos da body modification: Modcon e Opening Up. Agora vem a melhor parte, ambos estão disponíveis para download gratuito no blog de [...]

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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