Writers Life

Adventures in Comic Organizing!

So I got my first small box for comics! I’m a Real Fan (TM) now right?

So Roomie T’s cats LOVE to nibble on my books (the reason I got the short box in the first place). They apparently really love old 90s X-Men comics with Wolverine on the cover. They need better taste in men. Wolverine will do you no good kitty.

I’m not someone who needs organization to function in certain aspects of my life. Dishes? Ha! But my books? Oh no they need to be organized in my very specific way. Similarly with comics. Right now I have a couple different sections: Title (Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, etc), Completed, Stuff I Don’t Care About, One Shots. Makes so much sense right?

A small box at my local comic shop costs about $5.99, then comes the tabs, bags and boards which are all sold separately. The totally can be in the $30-20 range. Luckily packets of bags and boards come in a hundred so they’ll last for a while if you keep a small pull like I do. Tabs also come in packets of 30 or 50. Which should last a long while, again, depending on how many different comics you have. I don’t have to many differing titles so I don’t need that many tabs at the moment. Personally I prefer the tall tabs, I can read what each tab says better than the smaller tabs (that are about the size of a comic). I know some folks use the large tabs to separate their long boxes by publisher, and the small tabs to separate by title. But I’m not there yet so no worries for me!

When I laid out all my comic issues I was actually pretty surprised by how much I had. I honestly didn’t think I owned that many singles! I’m more of a trade buyer than a singles collector. There’s only a handful of titles I want to collect or read or support weekly (or monthly). My pull  list is kept pretty trim because 1) money, and 2) I’m picky. I prefer to read comics in trade paperback form. I’m actually not a bit fan of the single issues. It’s a tiny bit of story for a pretty nasty chunk of money sometimes. But some stories are worth it and I’m willing to support them on their journey towards trade paperback status.

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I was reading some of my older titles (mostly New Teen Titans and Tales of Teen Titans stuff) while organizing. Reminded myself of how much I adored the relationship between Starfire and Dick Grayson. DC broke them up but they live on in my heart. Also realized how much I miss Starfire’s poofy, fluff hair. Her straight hair look is alright, fits with the fire motif they have going for her more than the outdated streak, but I still wish her hair was curler than it is now.

What really helped while organizing was my League of Comic Geeks app. It’s a great app for organization. You can scan your comics and the app will log them into your account under your “collection”. You can also mark things as “read” and “unread” which personally helps me keep track of what I need to read and haven’t read. It also helps me see what issues I need for part of a run. One of my goals is to collect the entire original New Teen Titans run and this app helps me keep track of what I already have so I’m not buying doubles.

I think Jughead #9 and #10 were my favorite comics I read last week. Not 100% sold on Teen Titans yet. I’m giving it a couple more issues. Starfire did steal the show last issue though. So that made me happy. Oh and I know it looks like a lot of DC, but I have a lot on indie titles mixed into the piles and most of my trades are Marvel stuff. I try to keep a good mix, my collection is in its baby stages guys.

#BeingLatinxInComics Chat

#BeingLatinxInComics – Get To Know El Diablo; A Resource Guide

Origin:

Chato Santana was the ruthless and powerful leader of a dangerous street gang in Los Angeles who gained pyrokinetic powers following an encounter with Lazarus Lane. After a rival gang sold drugs on his turf and refused to give him a cut, Chato attacked them at their home, setting the building ablaze. Entering the building, he found that not only the gangsters, but also a woman and children, had died in the blaze. Distraught, he allowed himself to be taken into custody.

Character Breakdown:

Comic Appearances:

El Diablo written by Jai Nitz and art by Phil Hester

The haunted horseman returns to the DCU in a six-issue miniseries! Who is Chato Santana? A ruthless ganglord or a modern-day Robin Hood? Caught between the law and a power struggle in his gang, Chato meets Lazarus Lane, an impossibly old man with a possessed past. Witness this tale of rebirth, revenge, betrayal, justice, Hell, comeuppance, curses, and consequences.

Read it on Comixology

New Suicide Squad – #17 – 21

Following the events of Forever Evil, the US Government is aware of Amanda Waller’s “Task Force X” project, and co-opts the Suicide Squad to act in the interest of the US in situations that seem like the villains are just committing standard acts of villainy.

Read on Comixology

Suicide Squad N52 – #1 – 5, #8 – 16

A “New 52” initiative book featuring a reformed Suicide Squad. Team members include Harley Quinn,Deadshot, King Shark, El Diablo, Black Spider, and more. As with previous incarnations of the team, the Squad is run by government agent Amanda Waller.

Read on Comixology

Sean Ryan (W), Jeremy Roberts (Art)
Sean Ryan (Writer), Jeremy Roberts (Art)

SUICIDE SQUAD MOST WANTED: EL DIABLO AND BOOMERANG #1

From the pages of SUICIDE SQUAD comes an all-new series featuring two of the team’s most infamous heroes, El Diablo and Boomerang! First, a sudden pardon frees the fiery El Diablo from Belle Reve prison, much to the shock (and irritation) of team leader Amanda Waller. Chato returns to his old neighborhood to reunite with his family, but when he’s attacked by a heavily armed local gang and their leader, the deadly, super-powered Bloodletter, will his freedom and his life get cut dramatically short?

Read on Comixology

Cover by: Mike Huddleston & Rico Renzi
Cover by: Mike Huddleston & Rico Renzi

From Around the Web:

 

Next Being Latinx In Comics Chat is on August 27th starting at 12pm EST. Follow me on Twitter for any updates or for more information.

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#BeingLatinxInComics Chat

#BeingLatinxInComics – How It All Started, and Where It’s Going

This first chat was accidental. I didn’t begin tweeting about the latinx identity or creating the #BeingLatinxInComics hashtag with the intention of gaining a lot of attention or pursuing it further. I was simply working on a new article about the latinx identity in comics at the time, and decided to tweet about it. I wanted some other opinions to help get my brain going, and suddenly there was an entire discussion happening around me.

That first chat was an amazing experience. Discussing the latinx identity, especially with other latinx fans, was an amazing feeling for me. As I grow older, I grow more proud of my afro-latinx – and boricua – identity. I continue to attempt to learn more about my ancestry, my culture, and my people to better understand that identity. So I can better understand myself, and my family. My cultural and racial identity are very important to me; my identity is a source of pride in the face of great continuing adversity.

I hope that #BeingLatinxInComics can be a place where like-minded fans can discuss the various facets of the latinx identity, and non-latinx can learn a bit more about our culture and people.

In the initial chat, it was a mix of personal research, and branching discussion. We discussed how whitewashed latinxs are in comics, the erasure of our identities, and how many characters are latinx in name only.

The second follow-up chat was really a spur of the moment decision for me from riding high off the amazing response to the first chat. I decided to narrow this chat down a bit and see if a discussion about a single character’s latinx identity could work. The second chat was all about Miles Morales and how the writing for him, so far, has failed his latinx identity along with suggestions of what latinx writers could possibly write for him. To my surprise the chat was even more active than the previous one and by the end of it I knew I wanted to make this a continuing occurrence.

The #BeingLatinxInComics isn’t about negativity, it’s about discussion. Discussion which will include criticism (sometimes even harsh) of how these characters are written and portrayed in comics. But my goal for the hashtag is to also highlight latinx voices in the comic industry, give latinx fans a chance to share their thoughts and opinions, and hopefully educate non-latinxs on the latinx identity.

For future #BeingLatinxInComics chats, I will try hosting them once a month, at the end of each month, with a specific topic in mind. I’m trying to decide whether to have a monthly poll to decide the next month’s topic, or simply decide them for myself. Dates will have to be flexible due to my job and school, but the goal is to host a chat on the last Saturday of every month.

I hope everyone is as excited as I am to continue the #BeingLatinxInComics chats. I look forward to future discussions with both latinx and non-latinx fans. I hope others can learn from this, that overlooked latinx creators can be highlighted through this, and we all can have a good time expressing our feelings regarding the latinx identity. See you later this month for the #BeingLatinxInComics chat!

Want to read the first #BeingLatinxInComics chat? Check out the storify below!

#BeingLatinxInComics – Erasure of Latinx Identity

So this is the beginning of what I hope to make an on-going hashtag of what it’s like #BeingLatinxInComics and how comics can improve latinx representation. The hashtag can be both a source of constructive criticism and celebration of latinx characters in comics.

#BeingLatinxInComics: Miles Morales

The topic of this months #BeingLatinxInComics chat was Miles Morales’ Latinx identity (or lack of)! Culture, language, and the importance of Latinx creators was discussed. Stay tuned for next months chat!

Other Latinx chats to check out are #LatinxNerds monthly chats! They cover a wide range of topics and are hosted by a great group!

Fandom Commentary · media commentary

Step Aside Spirk, It’s Hikaru Sulu’s Time to Shine

Hikaru Sulu is officially gay, a reveal we’ll see incorporated in the upcoming Star Trek: Beyond film. Given the overall lack of Asian representation in film (both movies and television) and the lack of queer characters of color on the big and small screen this is a huge step forward in regards to queer representation. Especially since science fiction is often bone dry genre when it comes to diversity. Yet, dispute this step forward for queer fans of color there’s already fans who are derailing the conversation in order to advocate for Kirk and Spock (both separate and apart) being queer over Sulu. There’s a key difference here, in that, fans are attempting to marginalize Sulu to build up Kirk/Spock (or “Spirk”) as the “better” form of queer representation. All while ignoring the racial aspects of the conversation and how white cis male characters already dominate the conversation of queer media. By pushing out a prominent man of color who is now canonically queer in order to prop up a popular white male/male fanon ship contributes to the continued diminishing of characters of color and queer characters of color.

The overwhelming whiteness of slash shipping culture has been discussed in detail before by fans of color. Spirk, despite being the original slash ship for many, is no different. If the source material has marginalized characters of color, that’s a criticism on the media itself and should be acknowledged not used as an excuse to further marginalize them by ignoring their importance or status in canon.

Which is exactly what some Reboot (or Alternate Original Series) Star Trek fans (both Spirk shippers and non-Spirk specific shippers) have begun to argue about Sulu. That him being gay in the upcoming film isn’t progressive enough because he’s a minor character, where as Kirk being bisexual or pansexual, and in a relationship with Spock in particular, would be. Derailing the conversation about the importance of having a canonically queer Asian character in a major science fiction franchise, to a conversation about white men. This argument also ignores the reasons why Sulu isn’t the lead character in the same way Kirk or Spock is – which is classic Hollywood racism that prioritizes white characters stories over characters of color.

Personally I disagree that Sulu is a minor character; he’s been apart of the fabric of Star Trek for decades and is a cultural icon in his own right as a character. As a character, Sulu is hugely important to the history of positive representation of Asian characters in film. To erase that erases one of the handful of positive representations Asian fans and other fans of color have (a similar aspect seen in how poorly AoS fans and Spirk shippers have treated Uhura since the beginning of the reboot).

sulu-5Bottom line, stop removing race from the conversation. If Sulu was a “safe choice” for Paramount to allow being queer, that’s a cause of racism in Hollywood. Instead of advocating, “Well Kirk should be bi or pansexual and get with Spock because there’s history there and their both leads” you could be advocating for Sulu to get more prominence in the franchise. Instead of pushing for the spotlight to be continuously on the white male characters.

Continue reading “Step Aside Spirk, It’s Hikaru Sulu’s Time to Shine”

Comic Meta

In Defense of Sharon Carter: Where Incest, Homophobia, and Misogyny Collide

The backlash against Sharon Carter and Emily Vancamp from both fans and even members of the MCU cast, since the first trailer of Civil War has been both frustrating and confusing to witness. It is a strange sort of argument that Sharon and Steve Roger’s romantic relationship is akin to incest within the narrative of the Captain America films. This is especially confusing when both Winter Soldier and Civil War don’t support the incest assertion. The overall backlash against Sharon Carter in the name of progressivism for queer characters, incest victims, and women appears more so to support misogynistic readings of female characters whilst erasing the existence of bisexual, pansexual men and women.

Is it strange for Steve to date his ex’s grand-niece? Out of context it is a bit strange, or at least questionable. More so because the question should arise, “what is Steve doing dating an ex’s family member?” instead of, “what on earth is Sharon doing dating her Aunt’s ex boyfriend, that’s incest, how dare she?”. Especially given comic canon history that positions Steve as the more aggressive party, activity pursuing Sharon because of his lost love of Peggy. Sharon – originally Peggy’s sister, then niece, now in the films grand-niece – was more a sexist trope of a man viewing women as interchangeable than a good romantic partner for Sharon herself. Of which is why she rejects him originally. Both Winter Soldier and Civil War update the origin of Sharon and Steve’s relationship by developing Sharon separate from both Steve and Peggy Carter.

Gif credit: http://buckybarnesss.tumblr.com/
Stucky: Chris Evans and Sebastian Stan in Marvel’s Captain America: The First Avenger

Yet, a majority of the pushback against the “Staron” ship is directed at Sharon for seemingly standing in the way of popular male/male fandom ship Stucky (Steve/Bucky Barnes) or pursuing her Grand-Aunt’s former flame.  Something neither Captain America film supports in the least. Though the assertion that Sharon isn’t a “real” love interest of Steve’s is not helped when the directors of Civil War, the Russo brothers, are calling the two “soulmates” (which could mean platonicly that’s certainly not how fans will take it as the Russo brothers no doubt understood).

Continue reading “In Defense of Sharon Carter: Where Incest, Homophobia, and Misogyny Collide”

Writers Life

The Writers Life: 5/30/16

Hey everyone! Sorry I’ve been so MIA lately. I am still working on a lot of different things, recently my personal life has taken a toll and I took a break for my own mental health. I’m trying to slowly get back on track.

Things I’m Working On:

  1. Written an article on the Cap is HYDRA issue outlining the overall problems with the reveal due to Cap’s history as a character and how this emphasizes the overall problems with big two comics as a whole. I submitted the finished rough draft to The Nerds of Color yesterday.
  2. Began collecting data on Captain America being a Jewish symbol of superheroism based both on his origins and Jewish fan reactions. If you’re a Jewish fan and upset by the Cap show submit to me your thoughts on the matter! Or feel free to email me.
  3. I am still working on that fandom shipping essay, thinking of tilting it,How White Slash Dominates Fandom and Marginalized Fans of Color, but that title is really long so maybe not. Real life has just gotten in the way but it’s being written!
  4. I’m also still working on that Poe Dameron essay possibly titled: Poe Dameron is Not White. Short, simple and to the point no?
  5. I’m also continuing my How Diverse is the MCU series. Phase One is already published, have to start working on Phase Two next. After Phase Two comes the ABC shows (Agent Carter, and Agents of SHIELD), then the Netflix shows, then Phase Three and Beyond. It’s a huge project!
  6. I’m also starting another new series that breaks down the romantic relationships and themes in the Evangelion series. Time to dispel the belief that Kaworu wasn’t a love interest of Shinji! I’m thinking the possible title will be: The Love Life of Shinji Ikari but that sounds like a romcom so I’m not sure!
  7. Updated my About Me page, along with my Facebook page. You can also follow me on Instagram and Twitter! I’d invite anyone to follow me on Snapchat but I’m honestly a boring Snapchatter.
  8. I have updated my PayPal if anyone can or is willing to donate in support. I’m working on possibly getting a Patreon as well. I don’t know much about Patreon and I’m a bit scared of it to be honest. I’m also applying to various freelance positions, so put down updating my resume on the list of things I have to do as well. With school and other personal stuff I need to work harder to earn more stable income.
  9. I’m working on launching an official website to further promote my freelance writing as well as my work as a social media consultant. I’d like offer my services to smaller businesses, artists, and creators, but I have to outline what my services would entail and prices for them.

Other than some rather awful family business currently happening that’s all for me! I know I have some messages in my askbox, I apologize that I haven’t gotten a chance to answer them yet, but I promise I will get to them! Wish me luck everyone!

Continue reading “The Writers Life: 5/30/16”