Women in Comics: It’s not about getting a piece of the pie, it’s about making your own pie.
OK, so a comics blogger informed me at a convention a few months back that they didn’t know why I got invited to so many conventions and did so many appearances, because there are more women in comics out there than me, and I was hogging all the attention. They don’t think it’s fair for me to be on so many panels because I crowd out other women creators.
I am sure they mean well, but the perception has nothing to do with reality.
My fans know I rarely do appearances. I haven’t actually done a good old fashioned book tour in about ten years.
I do no more than a couple of conventions a year, and one or two book fairs.
I turn down almost every request I get.
There are nearly 1000 shows a year, of which I might do two. This is hardly hogging the spotlight.
I have done exactly two women in comics panels in roughly ten years.
I was sick for at least three years straight, produced very little work, and rarely went anywhere. I have a full workload now, but I’m not going to apologize for getting what I’ve earned, and what I need to do to make up for years of poor health and low income.
I am not hogging the blogging spotlight, either. No one is forced to read this thing.
I am also not eating up all the good women in comics assignments, as far as I know, since women are perfectly capable of writing and drawing all kinds of books whether I am there or not. And while some people might think other women could write and draw my books better than I do, I respectfully disagree. I am also pretty sure if I stopped writing or drawing anything, the theoretical person who would benefit from my absence is just as likely to be some dude.
No one is running around demanding dudes give up their jobs for other dudes because SPOTLIGHT HOGGING.
It is incredibly patronizing to incorporate the assumption that the only way one woman can shine is for another woman to turn off her own spotlight.
Women are perfectly capable of shining without dimming anyone else.
A woman’s place in comics is about achievement and talent, and work ethic, not about taking away a piece of pie from a woman who already has it.
It’s not about getting a piece of the pie, it’s about making your own pie.