Saturday, November 7, 2015

ComiqueCon put this man in his place, and it was glorious

In the past six years I’ve been to more than 200 comic book and pop culture shows, conventions and other events.
You could say I’ve become obsessed with conventions. It wouldn’t be a false statement. I’ve been to shows in five states and two countries, both as a working member of the media and as a straight up fan.
PHOTOS: ComiqueCon
Being at a show is what you could call my “happy place.” I’m comfortable at them, like a second home.
That’s what made Saturday special. I was completely out of place.
It wasn’t a bad thing.
ComiqueCon, a show by women and for women, was just different. It was a beautiful thing. There were dozens of female writers, artists and creators from the comic book and graphic art world.
Typically at a show there will be one or two female creators, or if it’s a big show maybe as much as 10 percent of the tables.
That’s a huge disparity from the real world. Women represent more than 52 percent of comic book buyers, but a far lower number when it comes to creators.
Marvel and DC Comics, the two major publishers print upwards of 50 titles a month each. Almost every book has a writer, artist, inker and letterer, yet the two companies usually employ less than 30 women in those positions in a given month.
Numbers are fluid each month depending on which titles. All of the creators are independent contractors, so technically no men or women are employed in any of those capacities.
Those numbers increase a bit at the second level of comic book publishing companies, but industry wide less than 40 percent of creators are women.
When women are typically featured at a comic book convention there has historically been one or two panels set up with two or three creators on it.
This convention was all encompassing, writers, artists, letterers, inkers and other women in the industry were not only the featured guests, they were basically the only guests. (A few men who work on books with women were featured but for once they were the extreme minority.)
It was great. I met more new (to me) creators than I do at a typical show.
I sincerely hope that show founder Chelsea Liddy is willing to put in the time and energy to bring the show back to Dearborn again next year.