Smutlancer Spotlight: Tyomi Morgan
This month’s interview was very special to me. It’s with a woman who I’ve been following ever since I decided to become a smutlancer; a woman who is unapologetically black, sexy, kinky knowledgeable about her work in the sex industry and has the resume to prove it. This woman is Tyomi Morgan (she/her)!
Tyomi is a Certified Sexologist, Authentic Tantra Practitioner, and International Pleasure Coach with nine years of experience in the sexual health field. Her down-to-earth approach to sexuality has garnered the views of millions of eyes around the world via her advice-based YouTube channel and interactive social media presence. She is the founder of Sex Ed blog Glamerotica101.com and emphasizes sexual empowerment of black women worldwide. Tyomi currently serves as the Resident Sexpert and Seminar Coordinator for the Exxxotica Expo and is a member of the National Coalition for Sexual Health.
Our conversation was filled with so many gems that I had to substantially condense this interview. Still, there is a ton of wisdom packed in this Smutlancer Spotlight -with a little cussin’ in between. One of my favorite quotes from our conversation is: “you can stop walking with your eyes closed now. Open your eyes and see yourself.”
So, this article is dedicated to any smutlancer struggling to get their footing financially or seeing the value they bring to the world. Let’s give ourselves permission to open our eyes, believe that money will come, and see ourselves for who we are: dope AF! Enjoy!
How do you make money as a smutlancer? What topic and/or type of content do you get paid to create?
I make money a lot of ways!
First, I make money through leading my Cowgirl Workout, which is a workout I created to help women learn how to improve their stroke aka ride dick better. So, I created a workout that I’ve been running as an international tour for the last five years of my life.
COVID shut down my international tour this year, but I moved the tour online and it’s been a success. So, the Cowgirl Workout will live on its own website and will have its own social network coming in September. There will be some free content, but it’s going to be mostly subscription-based.
I run webinars that are sponsored by my blog, glamerotica101.com.
I work with brands who want to do giveaways or who want to promote their products to my audience.
I have an OnlyFans page.
I do one-on-one coaching with clients.
I sell products, which I haven’t done recently because it’s a lot of work as far as [housing] the products, where they won’t be taken down or flagged.
I do consultations for people who want to start their businesses.
I get paid to place [influencers] with other influencers or connect them with publications.
I do tantric massages, nude massages, and erotic massages but I don’t have sex with clients.
I host fetish sessions [as well as] erotic events. I also host other people’s events, so people pay me for hosting their parties or online events now.
I model as well.
How long have you been a smutlancer?
Well, I have experience in the entertainment industry for 10 years+ because before I started doing sex work, I was writing for a music website. But as far as sex writing, I started my blog in 2011. So, it’s been nine years since I’ve been a smutlancer.
When did you get interested in sex and creating content about it?
I was always interested in sex since I was a teenager. I started studying the biology and mechanics of it. I started reading the Kamasutra, and then in my early 20’s when I started actually having sex with partners, I started to turn all of my situations into classrooms. I had all this knowledge and I wanted to apply all the things I was reading.
And then at 21, I ended up getting HPV from a partner and was really upset because I was young. The idea of having part of my cervix removed really pissed me off because I haven’t even had children yet. Thank God I didn’t have to do any of that because my body healed it. But when that happened to me, I was like, “I know there’s other women out here going through it too.” So, I started doing some research because I was like, “I don’t want other women to suffer like this.”
There weren’t as many [visible] black sex educators as there are now… So, when doing research and looking around, I saw that the sexual health, sex education industry, and even just the sex industry period, was very whitewashed and white focused. So, I was like, “Alright. Nobody looks like me that’s talking about this and keeping it real, so I’m gonna do it.” It took me a while to muster up the courage because people who have known me, they knew me to be very quiet. I had a poppin’ sex life, but I wasn’t vocal about it.
So, I launched my blog on Labor Day 2011. Immediately after I had started my blog, I had my first radio show [since] I was already plugged into the entertainment industry in Chicago.
Are you a full-time or part-time smutlancer? Do you have a day job?
This is my only job! When I started my blog, I was working for a merchant service provider trying to sell credit card processing and credit card machines. I took that job because I knew I would need the knowledge for my own business.
[But] when I started my blog, I was sitting at work monitoring the views of my blog more than I was working. So, when I decided to quit, I was like, “I’m never going to do anything I don’t want to do ever again.” I’m not going to work for anyone else unless it’s sex [related], writing for other people, acting or modeling or something like that. I will never go back to working for anyone else unless it’s me in the freelance capacity.
[But] being a freelancer is not a cakewalk and people need to understand that…If [publications] Net 30 you or Net 15 you, you got to wait 15 or 30 days for your money, which also means following up with them like, “Hey, what’s up? Where’s my money?”
You have to advocate for yourself and for being paid because [people] try to hit you with the Oop bop sh’bam like, “oh, we’ll just give you some free product in exchange for you promoting us to your followers.” So, they don’t want to pay you, but they want to be paid off your followers…
You [also] have to be willing to set your boundaries and set your prices, even when it comes to being a freelance coach because people will say, “Oh, I want to pick your brain. Can I take you to lunch?” You’re literally giving them life shifting advice and they want to buy you lunch. It’s not the same… Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done the barter system, but I’ve done bartering for things that are going to elevate my career, not just fill my belly.
Well said. Now, shifting gears a bit, are you open with anyone about the work you do? Do you only tell close friends and family or are you public about your work?
At first, when I started, I was just going to run my blog anonymously without people knowing it was me. [But] my mentor was like, “No, your image is very powerful and people need to see you. I was like, “Aight, fuck it.” I put a picture of myself on my blog and it just seemed like people were more intrigued at the fact that this attractive woman was talking about sex…
Honestly, though, my entire family doesn’t know what I do. They know I travel; they know I write, but they don’t know the nuisances of what I do.
For safety reasons, when I’m meeting new people, I don’t always say exactly what I do because some people don’t know how to handle the conversation. So, I’ll say I’m a content creator and a freelance writer, and I’ll leave it at that. If I feel safe enough to open up and say I’m a sex writer or sex coach, then I will.
Fair. And your real name is Tyomi Morgan or is that partially a pseudonym?
That’s actually a moniker. I do not do my work underneath my government or given name. Tyomi is a name I choose for myself and I choose to go by because I feel like it fits me better than my given name. [It] also [helps] in keeping my work separate to make sure that my money is not attacked, and my accounts are not attacked.
When and how did you realize that this was what you wanted to do professionally?
When my modeling career took a shift, my dad encouraged me to do something with my writing, and my aunt Nicole, God rest her soul, was a writer. And when blogging came into view as the thing to do, she was encouraging me to start a blog. She even printed a Blogging 101 book for me.
I was already freelance writing and I was like, “If I want to start a blog, I have to want to get up and talk about this subject every day, so what can I talk about?” I’m well versed in fashion and beauty just as much as I am in sex because I studied beauty and fashion for a long time. But I was like, “eh, I want to do something that, no shade, provides more substance to the world and really pushes people’s lives forward. So, I chose sex as [my] subject.
And then when I went to the Exxxotica Expo for the first time in Chicago in 2010, I was like, “Man, everybody’s so cool and accommodating and welcoming. I can totally be in this industry as a writer and possibly a producer one day,” which is why I’m in film school. So, at that point, I was like, “alright, I’m gonna do it.” I literally talked about my blog idea for almost two years before I launched it. It took a while, but I finally got there and I was like, “I’m in this for life.”
I love that. So, how long before you felt like you had an ‘Ahhh, I made it’ moment?
That whole ‘made it’ question is interesting because there were so many different steps along the way where I felt like I made it.
I started in 2011 officially and starting the blog was an ‘Ahh, I made it’ moment. And then being accepted to speak at Exxxotica was another ‘Ahh, I made it’ moment. And then [being on] Comedy Central was another, ‘Ahhh, I made it’ moment. And every time I would be acknowledged by an influencer, it was like, ‘Ahh, I made it.’
Going viral, being attached to Beyoncé was like, ‘Ahhh, I fucking made it.’ Working for Ebony, a black girl from Chicago where Ebony and Jet started. I literally called my mom and said, “Mama, I made it!”
When I started my world tour, it was like, “Okay. I really made it because I’m resting on my own skillset and my brand to carry me…”
I [have] my own dedicated server and that was an ‘Ahh, I made it’ moment because I was bringing in so much traffic that I had to have my own digital real estate.
This year, I have more celebrity clients, more high-profile interviews and [more] TV spots, so 2020, even in the midst of COVID, for me is “Ahh damn, I made it.”
And getting my tantra certification – working with powerful shamans and them seeing me as equal and helping me see my own power. I was just like, “Oh hell yeah, I made it.” Because for a while, I was questioning what I’m providing in this space. [So], to get that validation was like, “Okay, cool. You can stop walking with your eyes closed now. Open your eyes and see yourself.”
It’s many moments. It’s never just one moment.
What’s one thing you wish you had known when you started creating content about sex or became a smutlancer?
I wish I would’ve known how fucking biased the internet is. I wish I would’ve known that terms of service for a lot of these platforms do not support sex work or anything sexually explicit or sexually suggestive. I’ve been blocked and kicked off so many different platforms over these last nine years from PayPal to Constant Contact to Stripe to Shopify to you name it.
What does a typical day look like for you when you’re smutlancing?
So, on a typical day, I wake up at 7, 7:30 AM, sometimes 6:30, to meditate. And then I like to journal, and then I’ll start my workout, whether it’s solo or with my Cowgirl Tribe.
After that, I usually will take a shower, get myself clean and depending on if I have meetings or whatever in the morning, I’ll take those meetings or calls. And then the day is typically filled with client sessions or talks I’m doing.
I also update social media and do social media engagement, where I’m talking to people. I have most of my conversations on Twitter because it’s real-time conversations.
Then, I get some reading in, schoolwork in and I also try to work on balancing a social life. And each day looks different. Like, I’ll start out with an intention and a list of things to do and sometimes it shifts depending on what the day calls for, but every day is pretty much packed with work from sunup to sundown. Sometimes I’m [even] working through the wee hours of the night just to meet deadlines. I just got an administrative assistant who’s been keeping me on a schedule. She’s been amazing.
What, if anything, is your favorite content to create or type of smutlancing work to do?
My favorite type of content is visual content, so, making videos. It’s so much fun! I love being in front of the camera. I also enjoy the editing process, but I need to work with an editor, so I can produce more content faster. YouTube used to be a very fun space for me to work in, but because I’ve been demonetized completely, and they’re very touchy with their censorship now, working on YouTube feels kinda scary… [I’m] also working on expanding my digital real estate so I can have more space to host my videos on my own platform.
Before we get into some fun questions, what do you want your legacy to be as a smutlancer?
Just seeing people’s lives become better because I’m in it and my influence is in it. That right there, that’s what I want my legacy to be. That people will say, “Tyomi taught me.” Ha! #TyomiTaughtMe! That’s my legacy!
What do you absolutely need to have when you’re ready to sit down and work (snacks, type of environment, favorite blanket, clothes, or accessory, etc?) in order for you to be productive?
I love plants! My current apartment does not support live plants, so I have a lot of fake plants in my space. I will [also] smudge at the beginning of the day. I always need water or tea… and clothes. Sometimes I’m naked. Sometimes I’m just in something cute…
Music [also] helps me to stay focused… And [a] comfortable seat because I sit down most of the time. I try to keep my phones away from me when I want to be productive because then I’m checking in on social media too much.
Oh, and definitely feeling warm. I don’t like being cold. When it’s cold, I just want to cuddle up in the sheets and if I do that, it’s a wrap. I’m going to sleep.
Who or what inspired you to become a smutlancer?
Black women all around the world and my dad. And then, once I got in the space, women like Doctor Laura Berman, Doctor Rachel Ross and Passport Cutty really inspired me.
Are there any social/charitable cause that’s close to your heart and connected to your work as a smutlancer?
I work with the National Coalition for Sexual Health. I’ve also worked with the Chicago Women’s AIDS Project in the past.
I have worked in advocacy for abortion access for all people, for all women. I was the host of All Access 2016 in Chicago, which was a satellite event [that] was happening all over the country [with] several different events raising money for abortion access. I have [also] worked with Planned Parenthood of Illinois in helping them raise money for their organization to provide reproductive care for the Chicago and Illinois areas.
I’m also an advocate for trans people [and] an advocate against sex trafficking… I’m not necessarily aligned or associated with any organization… just in my own personal life.
Last but not least, name the best, strangest, funniest, or wildest thing you’ve experienced as a smutlancer — from a client, to someone online, anyone.
The craziest thing I can’t even talk about because I’m under an NDA. I’m gonna say that one of the best experiences I’ve had as a smutlancer, [well] it’s two. One of them is being the Seminar Coordinator for the Exxxotica Expo and [the other] is being hired to fly down to Jamaica to review the Hedonism Resort. So, aside from the non-disclosure shit, those two things are some of [my] best experiences.