I was fortunate enough to get a review copy of Chicks Dig Comics and I have been reading it on my lunch breaks every day. It’s full of essays by wonderful women (and a few men), including those in the industry and those who are just fans of comics, like me.
I’ll have to admit that I fell out of comics fandom over 10 years ago, but re-discovered them recently thanks to digital versions. Collecting comics got so expensive back in those days and I initially had the intent to buy every single Vertigo title ever written. Needless to say, I ran out of money before that happened and lost interest.
I’m back in the game, though, thanks to Comixology and other comics readers. Right now, my favorite, without a doubt, is the Locke & Key series by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez. I’ve also recently been turned on to Fables, as well as Alabaster.
So back to the book. I’ll admit that I related to almost everything these women had to say. My favorite essay had to be by Gail Simone (Birds of Prey, Wonder Woman, Deadpool), who stated that women have secretly won the war in the comics industry. When Simone says “They are going to have to produce product that the female reader enjoys to survive,” I believe it.
I also related to Erica McGillivray’s essay on being an accidental cosplayer. When referring to preparing for her first cosplay event, she attributed it to being more important than getting read for the prom. And she’s right. She goes into mentioning how more women are now being seen at both comic book stores and conventions and how we tend to embrace fandom at a higher participatory level. I was a first-time cosplayer a few years ago. And now? I’m always actively planning outfits.
Sara Ryan (Me and Edith Head) writes her essay in the form of comic panels that goes through her life as a comic fan and then a comic creator. Tammy Garrison talks about her love of Batman and how she incorporates “What would Batman do?” into her daily life. Alisa Bendis, president of Jinxworld, Inc., gives advice about women interested in starting their own comics companies.
And the list goes on and on. With over 20 contributors, Chicks Dig Comics has a little something for every female comic fan. I found myself nodding emphatically with many of those contributions and even caught myself finding an emotional connection with much of what was written. I’d say this is a must-read if you have ever loved comics.