Tell me a little about you: My name is Chelsea, I’m a big fan of comics, I help people for a living, and I want to make the world a little bit more fair for everyone, especially women and girls!
Describe event: ComiqueCon is a one day festival that is putting a jolt of fun and feminism into the comic world by highlighting the women who make comics great.
Why did you start it?
I started the event because 1) I was inspired by the changes happening in the comics industry, like the popularity of Ms. Marvel (written by one of my favorite authors, G. Willow Wilson), that show that women are gaining ground and telling their own stories. 2) I saw that there were bad things happening (i.e. Gamergate) and I wanted to respond in a positive way. 3) I wanted to give women a platform to show off their work and draw attention to women in the field – beyond the standard “Women In Comics” panels at other conventions – one of these “women in comics panels” only had men on it (Denver Comic Con 2015)! We knew that nothing like this had happened before and we wanted to host an awesome event that put the focus on women’s hard work, ideas, and energy.
What is the easiest part of the event?
I think it’s working with the best partners in the world – the owners of Green Brain Comics: Dan and Katie Merritt.
What is the hardest part?
All the planning! We plan for a year before the convention starts. A lot of planning goes into this one day convention!
What is your favorite comic?
Ooohh…good question. And a hard one to answer. I think I have to say it’s The Sandman by Neil Gaiman – I really like myths and fantasy – this is a good story about myths and legends. There are actually a couple all ages Sandman stories by Jill Thompson, who has also done the Scary Godmother series! I particularly enjoy Sandman: The Dream Hunters – which takes place in Japan and has a fox (my favorite animal).
Why do you think comics are important for kids?
I think that comics open up reading to a lot of people, not just kids. I know people that only read comics and haven’t picked up a “regular” book in years. But I think that comics are a medium that can especially attract younger readers – they are tangible (it’s just not the same if you read an online comic), they feature incredible artwork, and are a labor of love by all accounts – you can see the passion and excitement on the page of almost any comic. I think it’s important to highlight the many, many different kinds of stories available to kids through comics (not just superheroes!), and comics can be a really important way to get kids reading once they find the story that’s right for them.
Can you recommend a comic series for me? (I currently subscribe to My Little Pony, Disney Princess. Cleopatra in Space is my favorite)
Awesome! Yes I can! I just read Hilda and the Midnight Giant by Luke Pearson and I really enjoyed it! There is actually a whole Hilda series that he’s done. I also enjoy Akissi by Marguerite Abouet, and the Mouseguard series by David Petersen (who is from Michigan)! Ok, I’ll stop recommending comics. But there’s so many good ones!!
Bridget Note: ComiqueCon takes place this Saturday, Oct. 22 at the Arab American National Museum. I will be there so come find me!