As an addendum to the previous post, and for further reading, there’s currently a Women Write About Comics roundtable going on, with interviews with lots of smart people. The most recent is with Alexa Dickman of the Ladies Making Comics tumblr and her indispensable Women in Comics wiki which is doing an amazing job of bringing to light tons of forgotten women in the comics industry. Lots of smart talk, including this gem:
I joked on my blog a few weeks ago how Warner Brothers passed on Joss Whedon’s Wonder Woman because it was too mythological and took place in WWII, while Marvel made Thor, Captain America, and hired Joss Whedon to direct The Avengers– the total worldwide gross of all of those movies is $2.3 billion.
And also this:
It seems like every time I start thinking about that in depth, I end up writing a business plan for a hypothetical multimedia conglomerate! But I have been working on getting a Zazzle store up and running, starting with public domain Golden Age art by the likes of Lily Renée, Valerie Barclay, Alberta Tewks, and Janice Valleau, and any classic underground cartoonists that I can get a hold of who will give me permission (so far, I’ve got Trina Robbins’s OK!) There’s a lot of Photoshop clean-up involved there, so it’s moving much slower than I’d like, but them’s the breaks.
Yow what a great idea! Let’s make this happen, people.
Other interviews include Janelle Asselin who brings up a depressing fact:
I recall, and I hope I’m stating this accurately, that one of the comments you made regarding women writing in comics is that you would love to see more women, but you just don’t receive the sheer number of pitches from women as men. As an editor, do you have tips that would help aspiring women creators to get their pitches to the editor’s desk? Yep, that’s definitely something I said! In my time at DC, exactly one woman reached out to me via email, and I hired her. I didn’t hire her BECAUSE she was a woman, I hired her because she was good, of course. But in that same amount of time, probably at least two or three men a week contacted me looking for work, some of them intensely pushy and many of them decidedly not good. I think more female creators should put themselves out there. The numbers are growing, we all can see that, especially in indie comics and comics published by traditional publishers, but if there are women who want to work on super hero books, they need to speak up. The question I usually get after saying that, though, is “but how am I supposed to speak up when those companies don’t accept submissions?” And that’s an important thing!
This is true of everyone I talk to — women just don’t submit to most places. That has to change.
Other interviews: Laura Sneddon, Corrina Lawson, Laura Jane Faulds, and Melinda Beasi. And lots of of great reading on harassment, Captain Marvel and much more. A lot of very intelligent talk from people who love comics. And here’s a factoid from Lawson that needs repeating:
Forty percent of the audience for Avengers was women. That’s a large number of women who like superheroes. I’ve seen figures that put the female attendance at SDCC at forty percent. Forty percent of World of Warcraft players are women. GeekMom pulls in half a million pageviews a month.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.