Ok, so I missed this last year because we had cat illness that ate all our money. This year, I decided I was going even if it meant we ate ramen for the next month. So, Saturday morning I hopped on a bus and went down to the convention center.
OMG, YOU GUYS!!!!! It was awesome!!!!
Seriously, it was just amazing. Those of you who do not follow the twitter feed missed me constantly tweeting awesome booths by awesome people to whom you should give money to in exchange for awesome. So, I got there, got registered and went up to the dealer’s room. My con dealer’s room policy is always, you make one turn through without buying anything, so you can see what’s there and what you might want. Then, possibly take a second turn through to make sure you really want what you want. Then, on a third turn through, you can start spending money.
I broke my rule for this:
So, yeah, first turn through, I had to. Then I ran into my friend Rachel, and went to watch her on the Chicks Dig Comics panel, as she wrote one of the essays in the book. It was a great panel, with Jill Pantozzi of the Mary Sue, Sheena McNeil from Sequential Tart, Erica McGillavray of the Geek Girl Con concom, Sarah Kuhn who has worked for IGN and other sites, and Jen Van Meter, a comics author currently writing Hopeless Savages for Oni Press. The panel was meant to focus on what they wrote for the collection, but soon evolved past it as they spoke about what they loved and disliked about comics, how male comics fans treated them, and as the audience asked questions about keeping female geek community going and what did the panelists think about the “fake geek girl” policing going on. I will write more about that later.
Immediately after that was the “Make me a Sandwich” panel, about how women are treated when they start moving into formerly male dominated geek space. This panel included Grace, founder of Fat, Ugly or Slutty, Anita Sarkeesian from Feminist Frequency, Colette Vogele from Without My Consent, and Regina Buenaobra from Arena.Net, the folks who do Guild Wars. An amazing panel, each panelist detailed her experiences, what convinced them to fight back, how to protect yourself from it, and also what some game companies are doing to stop the bullying. At least one company (Bungie) is looking at how many times players get muted, and if it reaches a certain number of times, they go on automute for everyone. They talked about the necessity of speaking up about it without trying to engage the trolls, because staying quiet about it hasn’t stopped it. And the fact that exposing these douchebags has led to the cool men being aware that this shit happens ALL THE TIME. An incredible panel, and I got a chance to chat really quickly with Grace afterward.
Then it was back to the dealer’s room to introduce my friend Liz to Surly Amy and buy a necklace from her:
Then I picked up a really awesome piece of yaoi art from Juige Illustrations, and I believe this is their webpage on DeviantArt. Beautiful stuff. I also picked up a “Mega Bleh” print from the folks who do Little Vampires, the cutest web comic EVER!!!!!
I caught a quick lunch with my friends Liz and Ben, and then it was back to the convention. I tried to attend the Online Misogyny panel with Surly Amy, Rebecca Watson and Jen McCreight, but it was packed, not even standing room left. Apparently it went really well. Amy said she kind of wished they had more time to talk about solutions, but that it was a great panel. I’m sorry I missed it.
Then Rachel and I recorded a podcast about comics and feminism that will get uploaded, soon-ish. I mean, I just did one, and this one is awesome and all, but I may be terrible and make you wait until September for it.
The panels I attended and the conversations I had at this convention will be spawning more blog posts, and hopefully some awesome interviews in the near future. It’s kind of feast or famine for that sort of thing around here. Either I have lots of people to interview and talk to, or no one. We’ll see if things pan out, and if they do, I hope you’ll be as happy as I am.
We’re also talking about doing Geek Girls Rule/Women What Game meet-ups here in Seattle and possibly in Portland in the next couple of months, so stay tuned, or follow the twitter for more on that.
If you like the blog or the podcast, or if you would like to help fund my convention dilettante-ism, please, please, please donate to keep us going. Donations go to pay for the podcast hosting and website domain, primarily.
Also, we’ll have an announcement about t-shirts soon. Really and truly. Soon. Damn life, always interfering. I SWEAR IT’S COMING!!! I will know about the helper monkey soon.
Oh, and Honey Badger’s first two songs are available for download here, for free or pay what you want.