Former stripper, author breaks 'code of silence'

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - An Isle of Palms author has broken the stripper code of silence with her new book, Stiletto Diaries. For 23 years London Knight danced her way through strip clubs from coast to coast.

Now retired, Knight has written the book to let all young women know what she claims is the bare naked truth behind the industry.

"I want everybody to know what they see when you walk into a club that's smoke and mirrors," Knight said. "That's not the truth behind it all."

In the book, Knight portrays the strip club world as dangerous, with drugs flowing just as freely as the dancers' moves on stage.

"It gets to be a very addictive lifestyle and pretty soon you're not making money for anything more than your drug habit," she said.

As part of this story, several area strip clubs were contacted, but none responded to Knight's claims. However, a dancer who has worked in the Charleston strip club scene for six years, Dana, who identified herself with a pseudonym, shared her experience.

"I have other skills, but when it comes down to it my body makes better money than all of those combined," she said. "And for a couple hours a week versus 40 to 60 to 80 hours - why not?"

According to Dana, it is easy to get caught up in the drug scene in the strip club world.

"You name it, probably I've tried it," Dana explained. "I've never stuck a needle in my arm, but I have put plenty of things up my nose and ingested things."

Dana said all that changed about a year ago when she kicked drug addiction and began working for Strictly Strippers, a business that is a club on wheels.

"Our shows are so incorporated with the parties that there's no possible way to do that show drunk or to do that show on drugs," said Dan Schnellinger, owner of Strictly Strippers for the past 12 years. "If you can walk in and do our show and do it on either one, it's a miracle to me."

Schnellinger said he makes sure a driver accompanies the dancers to every private party and stays in the room while they perform.

"It's a different atmosphere. It's a different lifestyle," Dana commented. "I get up in the morning, I eat my breakfast, I go to school, I go to my other jobs. Working in a club, that wouldn't be so easy being up until 5, 6 in the morning."

According to Knight, it is too late for the roughly 60 women she claims to have buried because of drug abuse.

"Put it this way, I probably will be black-balled from every club out there after this comes out," Knight said. "But for me it's not about that, it's about that one girl."

According to a representative from AuthorHouse, the publisher of Knight's book, Stiletto Diaries's experiences. is a work of fiction based on the author

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