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rachel illustrates

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faitherinhicks:

greg-pak:

Gene Yang is one of my heroes. Read this, y’all.
weneeddiversebooks:

Read This: Gene Luen Yang’s rousing comics speech at the 2014 National Book Festival gala
From the Washington Post, article here.
GENE LUEN YANG, Library of Congress, Jefferson Building:
Good evening. Thank you, Library of Congress and National Book Festival, for inviting me to share the stage with such esteemed authors, and to speak with all of you. I am deeply grateful for this honor.
I’m a comic-book guy, so tonight I’d like to talk about another comic book guy. Dwayne McDuffie was one of my favorite writers. When I was growing up, he was one of the few African-Americans working in American comics. Dwayne worked primarily within the superhero genre. He got his start at Marvel Comics but eventually worked for almost every comic book publisher out there. He even branched out into television and wrote for popular cartoon series like “Justice League” and “Ben 10.”
Dwayne McDuffie
Dwayne McDuffie is no longer with us, unfortunately. He passed away in 2011, at the age of 49. But within comics, his influence is still deeply felt.
I was lucky enough to have met him once. About a year before his death, we were on a panel together at Comic-Con. I had the opportunity to shake his hand and tell him how much his work meant to me.
In a column Dwayne wrote in 1999, he talked about his love of the Black Panther, a Marvel Comics character. The Black Panther’s secret alias is T’Challa, the king of the fictional African nation of Wakanda. He has super senses, super strength, and super agility. He’s an Avenger, though he hasn’t yet made it into the movies.
The Black Panther wasn’t created by African American cartoonists. He was created in July of 1966 by two Jewish Americans, Stan Lee (who was born Stanley Lieber) and Jack Kirby (who was born Jacob Kurtzberg).
By modern standards, the Black Panther is not a flawless example of a black superhero. In their first draft of the character, Lee and Kirby called him “the Coal Tiger” and gave him a goofy yellow and black costume. Even in his final form, his superhero alias includes the word “Black.” This is true of many early African and African American superheroes, as if what makes them remarkable is neither their superpowers nor their heroism, but their ethnicity. Most problematic, though, was that Marvel made their most prominent black superhero the star of a series called Jungle Action.
All of these flaws were lost on Dwayne McDuffie when he first encountered the Black Panther in 1973, at the age of 11. What struck him was the character’s commanding sense of dignity. The Black Panther wasn’t anyone’s sidekick. He wasn’t an angry thug. He wasn’t a victim. He was his own hero, his own man. As Dwayne describes it, “In the space of 15 pages, black people moved from invisible to inevitable.”
Dwayne’s love of the Black Panther eventually blossomed into a love of comics in general. Dwayne was a smart guy with a lot of options in life. He’d earned a master’s degree in physics. But he chose to write comics as his career. I would argue that without the Black Panther, this flawed black character created by a writer and an artist who were not black, there would be no Dwayne McDuffie the comic book writer.
Dwayne wasn’t just a writer — he was also a businessman. In the early ’90s, he teamed with a group of writers and artists to found Milestone Media, the most prominent minority-owned comic book company that has ever existed. The Milestone universe have since been folded into DC Comics, so these days characters like Static Shock and Icon – characters Dwayne co-created – fight crime alongside Superman and Batman.
In the early ’90s, I was finishing up my adolescence. I visited my local comic-book store on a weekly basis, and one week I found a book on the stands called Xombi, published by Milestone Media. Xombi is a scientist who became a superhero after he was injected with nanotechnology. He allied himself with a secret order of superpowered nuns. One sister was known as Nun of the Above, another Nun the Less. Together, they protected the world from all kinds of supernatural threats.
Xombi was inventive and fun, but he stood out to me because he was an Asian American male carrying in his own monthly title. And even more notable – he didn’t know Kung Fu. Xombi wasn’t created by Asian Americans – his writer was white and his artist black – but he did make Asian Americans a little less invisible.
We in the book community are in the middle of a sustained conversation about diversity. We talk about our need for diverse books with diverse characters written by diverse writers. I wholeheartedly agree.
But I have noticed an undercurrent of fear in many of our discussions. We’re afraid of writing characters different from ourselves because we’re afraid of getting it wrong. We’re afraid of what the Internet might say.
This fear can be a good thing if it drives us to do our homework, to be meticulous in our cultural research. But this fear crosses the line when we become so intimidated that we quietly make choices against stepping out of our own identities. After all, our job as writers is to step out of ourselves, and to encourage our readers to do the same.
I told you the story of Dwayne McDuffie to encourage all of us to be generous with ourselves and with one another. The Black Panther, despite his flaws, was able to inspire a young African American reader to become a writer.
We have to allow ourselves the freedom to make mistakes, including cultural mistakes, in our first drafts. I believe it’s okay to get cultural details wrong in your first draft. It’s okay if stereotypes emerge. It just means that your experience is limited, that you’re human.
Just make sure you iron them out before the final draft. Make sure you do your homework. Make sure your early readers include people who are a part of the culture you’re writing about. Make sure your editor has the insider knowledge to help you out. If they don’t, consider hiring a freelance editor who does.
Also, it’s okay if stereotypes emerge in the first drafts of your colleagues. Correct them – definitely correct them – but do so in a spirit of generosity. Remember how soul-wrenching the act of writing is, how much courage it took for that writer to put words down on a page.
And let’s say you do your best. You put in all the effort you can. But then when your book comes out, the Internet gets angry. You slowly realize that, for once, the Internet might be right. You made a cultural misstep. If this happens, take comfort in the fact that even flawed characters can inspire. Apologize if necessary, resolve do better, and move on.
Let your fear drive you to do your homework. But no matter what, don’t ever let your fear stop you.



Gene is the best dude.
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faitherinhicks:

greg-pak:

Gene Yang is one of my heroes. Read this, y’all.

weneeddiversebooks:

Read This: Gene Luen Yang’s rousing comics speech at the 2014 National Book Festival gala

From the Washington Post, article here.

GENE LUEN YANG, Library of Congress, Jefferson Building:

Good evening. Thank you, Library of Congress and National Book Festival, for inviting me to share the stage with such esteemed authors, and to speak with all of you. I am deeply grateful for this honor.

I’m a comic-book guy, so tonight I’d like to talk about another comic book guy. Dwayne McDuffie was one of my favorite writers. When I was growing up, he was one of the few African-Americans working in American comics. Dwayne worked primarily within the superhero genre. He got his start at Marvel Comics but eventually worked for almost every comic book publisher out there. He even branched out into television and wrote for popular cartoon series like “Justice League” and “Ben 10.”

Dwayne McDuffie is no longer with us, unfortunately. He passed away in 2011, at the age of 49. But within comics, his influence is still deeply felt.

I was lucky enough to have met him once. About a year before his death, we were on a panel together at Comic-Con. I had the opportunity to shake his hand and tell him how much his work meant to me.

In a column Dwayne wrote in 1999, he talked about his love of the Black Panther, a Marvel Comics character. The Black Panther’s secret alias is T’Challa, the king of the fictional African nation of Wakanda. He has super senses, super strength, and super agility. He’s an Avenger, though he hasn’t yet made it into the movies.

The Black Panther wasn’t created by African American cartoonists. He was created in July of 1966 by two Jewish Americans, Stan Lee (who was born Stanley Lieber) and Jack Kirby (who was born Jacob Kurtzberg).

By modern standards, the Black Panther is not a flawless example of a black superhero. In their first draft of the character, Lee and Kirby called him “the Coal Tiger” and gave him a goofy yellow and black costume. Even in his final form, his superhero alias includes the word “Black.” This is true of many early African and African American superheroes, as if what makes them remarkable is neither their superpowers nor their heroism, but their ethnicity. Most problematic, though, was that Marvel made their most prominent black superhero the star of a series called Jungle Action.

All of these flaws were lost on Dwayne McDuffie when he first encountered the Black Panther in 1973, at the age of 11. What struck him was the character’s commanding sense of dignity. The Black Panther wasn’t anyone’s sidekick. He wasn’t an angry thug. He wasn’t a victim. He was his own hero, his own man. As Dwayne describes it, “In the space of 15 pages, black people moved from invisible to inevitable.”

Dwayne’s love of the Black Panther eventually blossomed into a love of comics in general. Dwayne was a smart guy with a lot of options in life. He’d earned a master’s degree in physics. But he chose to write comics as his career. I would argue that without the Black Panther, this flawed black character created by a writer and an artist who were not black, there would be no Dwayne McDuffie the comic book writer.

Dwayne wasn’t just a writer — he was also a businessman. In the early ’90s, he teamed with a group of writers and artists to found Milestone Media, the most prominent minority-owned comic book company that has ever existed. The Milestone universe have since been folded into DC Comics, so these days characters like Static Shock and Icon – characters Dwayne co-created – fight crime alongside Superman and Batman.

In the early ’90s, I was finishing up my adolescence. I visited my local comic-book store on a weekly basis, and one week I found a book on the stands called Xombi, published by Milestone Media. Xombi is a scientist who became a superhero after he was injected with nanotechnology. He allied himself with a secret order of superpowered nuns. One sister was known as Nun of the Above, another Nun the Less. Together, they protected the world from all kinds of supernatural threats.

Xombi was inventive and fun, but he stood out to me because he was an Asian American male carrying in his own monthly title. And even more notable – he didn’t know Kung Fu. Xombi wasn’t created by Asian Americans – his writer was white and his artist black – but he did make Asian Americans a little less invisible.

We in the book community are in the middle of a sustained conversation about diversity. We talk about our need for diverse books with diverse characters written by diverse writers. I wholeheartedly agree.

But I have noticed an undercurrent of fear in many of our discussions. We’re afraid of writing characters different from ourselves because we’re afraid of getting it wrong. We’re afraid of what the Internet might say.

This fear can be a good thing if it drives us to do our homework, to be meticulous in our cultural research. But this fear crosses the line when we become so intimidated that we quietly make choices against stepping out of our own identities.
After all, our job as writers is to step out of ourselves, and to encourage our readers to do the same.

I told you the story of Dwayne McDuffie to encourage all of us to be generous with ourselves and with one another. The Black Panther, despite his flaws, was able to inspire a young African American reader to become a writer.

We have to allow ourselves the freedom to make mistakes, including cultural mistakes, in our first drafts. I believe it’s okay to get cultural details wrong in your first draft. It’s okay if stereotypes emerge. It just means that your experience is limited, that you’re human.

Just make sure you iron them out before the final draft. Make sure you do your homework. Make sure your early readers include people who are a part of the culture you’re writing about. Make sure your editor has the insider knowledge to help you out. If they don’t, consider hiring a freelance editor who does.

Also, it’s okay if stereotypes emerge in the first drafts of your colleagues. Correct them – definitely correct them – but do so in a spirit of generosity. Remember how soul-wrenching the act of writing is, how much courage it took for that writer to put words down on a page.

And let’s say you do your best. You put in all the effort you can. But then when your book comes out, the Internet gets angry. You slowly realize that, for once, the Internet might be right. You made a cultural misstep. If this happens, take comfort in the fact that even flawed characters can inspire. Apologize if necessary, resolve do better, and move on.

Let your fear drive you to do your homework. But no matter what, don’t ever let your fear stop you.

Gene is the best dude.

curl left 1stday ofSeptemberin the year2014 curl right
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aiffe:

nitanahkohe:

‪#‎RCMP‬ in ‪#‎Kelowna‬, ‪#‎BC‬ is requesting the public’s assistance in locating ‪#‎missing‬ 18-year-old Starr HARVEY was last seen August 14, 2014. Since her disappearance, police have followed up on several leads and possible sightings, however Starr HARVEY remains missing.

Description of Starr HARVEY: First Nations female, 5 ft 5 in (165 cm), 128 lbs (58 kg), slim build with brown hair and brown eyes.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Starr HARVEY is urged to contact their local police Anonymous information can be submitted to The Canadian missing persons tip line at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).



For some reason this got her age wrong? She’s 15. (Source, same as above.)

This does change things considerably, because as a minor, there are quite a few problems it’s possible to have that can only be solved by becoming a missing person. She might want to be found, or she might not want to be found, and unfortunately the police treat both of those the same. If I saw her, I would try to talk to her rather than just call the cops and let them deal with it, and if she didn’t want me to, I wouldn’t call the cops.

I hope she is safe and that the community responds compassionately to her needs, whatever they might be.
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aiffe:

nitanahkohe:

‪#‎RCMP‬ in ‪#‎Kelowna‬, ‪#‎BC‬ is requesting the public’s assistance in locating ‪#‎missing‬ 18-year-old Starr HARVEY was last seen August 14, 2014. Since her disappearance, police have followed up on several leads and possible sightings, however Starr HARVEY remains missing.

Description of Starr HARVEY: First Nations female, 5 ft 5 in (165 cm), 128 lbs (58 kg), slim build with brown hair and brown eyes.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Starr HARVEY is urged to contact their local police Anonymous information can be submitted to The Canadian missing persons tip line at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

For some reason this got her age wrong? She’s 15. (Source, same as above.)

This does change things considerably, because as a minor, there are quite a few problems it’s possible to have that can only be solved by becoming a missing person. She might want to be found, or she might not want to be found, and unfortunately the police treat both of those the same. If I saw her, I would try to talk to her rather than just call the cops and let them deal with it, and if she didn’t want me to, I wouldn’t call the cops.

I hope she is safe and that the community responds compassionately to her needs, whatever they might be.

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miss-nerdgasmz:

cchtml:

This feeling when you walk into big art supply stores …

brb changing underwear

(via mishy-belle)

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More birthday photos (these, a bit more braggish).

After the bird walk I already posted, we came home, and I was treated to this amazing cake and coffee with my Llove (and a RWBY marathon, got her hooked now too. Yes yes). Also featuring some of my gifts - the owl mug in the top left, a lovely autumn candle holder with apple cider candles, a fairy/unicorn toy set that’s just TOO adorable, the gorgeous roses at the bottom <3 And the second to last picture is a shawl from my mother-in-law, made from my Llove’s hand-dyed yarn, sitting on top of a gorgeous quilt (with owls!) that my sister-in-law made me.

Between that and events earlier this week, I am thoroughly spoiled. Turning 30 is not so bad after all, everyone :)

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Focus for a moment on only 1 thing - the spirit within you. The real you, not a name or a job title. The plain fact is that you exist. I am. 
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Tagged by sparklylegolas…

(sparklylegolas - you and your getting me to answer question things. Shakey fist.)

Replace with your own answers and then tag 10 people.

  • Name: Rachel
  • Nickname: Rach, or Rei (on the interwebs and as I sign my work)
  • Birthday: August 30
  • Gender: Womanish
  • Sexuality: Lesbian
  • Height: 4’11”
  • Time zone: EST
  • What time and date is it there: August 31, 8:20pm
  • Average hours of sleep I get a night: 6 to 7 1/2, need more…
  • Last thing I googled was:  Pictures of Yang Xiao Long. Swoon.
  • Most used phrase(s): "Well, that’s a mess," and I also use the word ‘lovely’ a lot
  • First word that comes to mind:  Rarghlemuffins
  • What I last said to a family member: ”Love you too Brend, thanks! *hug* It was indeed awesome.”
  • One place that makes me happy and why: the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, because its a new beautiful nature place for me and I now have happy birthday memories there.
  • How many blankets I sleep under: 1 during the summer, roughly 3 during the winter
  • Favorite beverage(s): Earl grey tea
  • Last movie I watched in the cinema: Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  • Three things I can’t live without: My spiritual practice, art, and tea
  • A piece of advice to all my followers: Judging oneself is a waste of energy - take responsibility for your actions, of course, but really try to love who you are, be awesome, create things and revel in that. It feels a lot better than the alternative. And I know that’s hard, some days, but even the trying is better. 
  • You all have to listen to this song: "Paperback Writer" by the Beatles, of course 

Aaaaand I tag any of my followers who want to do this :)

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Birthday photoset time!

My Llady and I visited the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for a guided bird watching walk early in the morning. So very crazy beautiful out there. Saw many beautiful birds, of course, and some turtles and a very large frog, lots of mushrooms too and wildflowers.

Nature is just wonderful <3

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More old D&D art, because I miss gaming.

Neeta and Gazit, who might be familiar from the bottom right picture.

Gazit Treebend, Gnome cleric of Ehlonna (mine) and Neeta, half-Elven half-Amethyst Dragon sorcerer-turned-rogue (my Llady’s). They’re from the first game I ever DM’d, actually, and though I love them dearly that was definitely a learning experience.

They’re definitely still influential characters as I continue to create things, today.

All images © Rachel Marsh

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drveggie:

LE POUVOIR DE LA MAGIE.

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