It’s almost impossible to walk into a movie theatre nowadays and not see a Super Hero movie emblazoned on the marquee. The market is completely oversaturated with the latest Marvel and DC movies and doesn’t show any sign of stopping. There were a select few that appealed to me – Wonderwoman and Black Panther, for instance. But for the most part, it was hard to see myself reflected in the superhero universe.
The Superhero formula seems to be teams of 4 to 5 cis, white men and a single female (who invariably has a sexy, impractical costume unlike her male counterparts). But there’s still hope for you if these comics (and their movie counterparts) don’t appeal.
Here are some of my favorite – female-led, diverse, LGBTQIA, and body-positive – comics and graphic novels.
Continue reading “Comics for People Who Don’t Like Comics”
June is nearly over, but that doesn’t mean your LGBTQIA reading list has to end. Here are some of my favorite LGBTQIA books to keep your pride going all year long.
Continue reading “Rainbow Reads: Pride Month Picks!”
I’ll probably die with a giant list of T.B.R. (To Be Read) books. I’ve mostly come to terms with this. One lifetime is simply not enough to devour all of life’s stories. In some ways, there’s even something comforting about having a Scherazade’s stockpile of tales. If you’re a reader, you’ll always have a friend. You’ll have always have new stories to look forward to. And you’ll never, ever run out of words.
The problem is…knowing when to give up.
Continue reading “Life is Too Short: Learning to D.N.F.”
Here are some of my most anticipated reads of the year to come!
Continue reading “2019 Most Anticipated YA Book Releases”
If you’re stuck in a dreaded reading slump or haven’t picked up a book since Catcher in the Rye in High School English but don’t know where to start, here’s a list that might help. I read a lot of books in 2018 – some great, some not so great. But the following books were standouts to me. I mostly read Young Adult and Fantasy Fiction, but there are some variations, such as Historical Fiction and Mystery. If you’re interested in seeing all the books I’ve read in 2018, check out my Goodreads.
Continue reading “Favorite Reads of 2018”
Ahhh, the new year. A time, when we all collectively rush out to buy gym memberships we will use for a month and pay for for the next eleven. I’m completely guilty of rushing headlong into resolutions – like a bull charging a red cape. And surprise! – that cape continually gets yanked out of reach – until even looking at the color red makes me feel guilty and annoyed. Studies show that only 8% percent of people keep their resolutions, which begs the question: Are we doomed to fail?
Continue reading “New Years Resolutions: Are We Doomed To Fail?”
Ezekiel Yusuf Moran is 99 years old. He has been many things in his near-century of life – a son, a farmer, a friend, a lover, a doctor, a husband, a father, a grandfather, a homeopath, a soldier and a French Résistance fighter. But most of all, Ezekiel has been a seeker. Continue reading “Ezekiel: A novel by John Fanning”
One of the best things about writing in the fantasy fiction genre is that anything goes. I’m not saying there aren’t rules – there are – Harry Potter wasn’t able to bring his parents back from the dead, the One Ring gave Frodo powers, but not without consequence. If done correctly, magic or superpowers shouldn’t be a panacea to all life’s problems or there would be nothing at stake, nothing for our hero to overcome or run up against. There are limits to magic and rules that govern fantasy worlds. But – the good news is, as a writer – you make the rules! You can create a fictional world of fish people, so long as you can convincingly explain to the reader how they’re able to breath under water, what kind of teeth they have for eating prey and how they’re able to navigate the darkest depths of the ocean. Fantasy – no matter how far-fetched – must have a basis in reality or you risk the reader suspending their disbelief.
Which is why a lot of fantasy worlds draw from science, historical events, real people or historical periods. Doing this provides the reader with a recognizable framework through which to view the world. Going forward, let’s call that framework belief glasses. As long as the writer provides the reader with a pair of belief glasses, the reader should be able to comfortably navigate the writer’s world and not get taken out of it. So when you’re creating those glasses, why create ones that only see white people? Why create glasses that can see dragons but not women in positions of power? Why not make full-spectrum glasses? Continue reading “Diversity in Fantasy: We Can Do Better.”
Unlike it’s predecessor, Comic-Con (which is now in its eleventh year), BookCon is a relatively new convention. Started in 2014, BookCon is run by the same company that runs Comic-Con – ReedPOP – and follows on the heels of BookExpo, the largest and longest running annual book trade fair in America. But while BookExpo is geared more toward professionals – publishers, writers and educators – BookCon is for the fans. It hosts Panels, Meet-and-Greets, Giveaways, Autographing sessions and Fan Meet-Ups. Last year, BookCon took place in Chicago and was only one day long, but this year, it was held at the Javits Center in New York, Saturday and Sunday, June 3rd & 4th. I was lucky enough to attend…
Continue reading “BookCon: A How-To.”
Writing and creating art are most often solitary experiences – hours spent staring at blank computer screens or pieces of paper or canvas – time spent trying to find the right words or colors. Time, largely spent, in our own minds. But we don’t have to – and shouldn’t – create within a bubble! Most art is made within a community, with support from family and friends, with sage advice from mentors, with the occasional self-help book. If you’re having trouble getting started or finishing a project, here are some books that will help.
Continue reading “1o Books Every Creative Should be Reading.”