So I’m going to my first-ever con – New York Comic Con, or NYCC. As a relative newbie to comic culture, I’m a little nervous and unsure of what to expect, but really looking forward to the panels and meeting new people. I’ve been reading things to get me in the mood for NYCC and wanted to share. If you’re going to a con, or want to go to a con, or are even interested in the comic galaxy, here are some books to check out.
The Geek Feminist Revolution: Essays by Kameron Hurley
This is a smartly-written, insightful collection of essays that delve into geek culture, feminism, and genre writing; namely science-fiction/fantasy. Geek culture is not immune to misogyny, and Hurley takes this on and examines why this is, what it means, and how to move forward. At the same time, she looks at what it means to be a woman writer, especially in this age of online publishing, where trolls are rampant, and harassment seems to be a given, if you’re female. Blending personal narrative with cultural criticism, Hurley’s book is an indispensable guide for women in fandoms (or women, period). This should be required reading of everyone.
Okay, so this book is primarily geared for the younger market, but it’s so well-done and fun to read, so I had to include it. This is especially great for newbies to geek culture and fandoms, because Maggs details fanfic, cosplay, dealing with online trolls, going to cons, and much more.
From a Certain Point of View (Star Wars) by various writers
I love anything and everything Star Wars, and A New Hope is my favorite SW movie. This book is a collection of stories retelling moments from that film, from various points of view, to commemorate the 40th anniversary. Writers like Will Wheaton, Beth Reavis, Meg Cabot, Claudia Gray, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Nnedi Okorafor, and Chuck Wendig are part of the lineup, so you know it’s gotta be good.
Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde
I admit; it was the cover that drew me to the book: the bright pink hair is eye-catching. Centering on Charlie and Taylor, and their friend Jamie, this YA book has it all – cons, fandom, falling in love, exploring your identity, and more. I especially appreciated the neurodiverse aspect of Taylor, and the way Wilde handles themes of sexuality and mental health without being preachy. If you’re looking for a fun, feel-good book, this is it.
The Geek’s Guide to World Domination by Garth Sundem
This is a super fun book full of vital information you need in order to rule the world, geeks. Full of random factoids (314.15, to be exact), you’ll learn how to geek out your cubicle, have sexytimes on Second Life, write in Elvish, and lots of other things. A great book to throw in your bag and take to Con with you – who knows, maybe you’ll impress a fellow geek?