Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Writing Roundup: Superheroes and Fandom

Over the last month or so I reviewed a couple of books and also wrote an article about growing up a Cloak and Dagger fan—something that might not resonate with many but likely will with at least a few Gen Xers of a certain age. These pieces are all available to read on Sequart.

Last Night, A Superhero Saved My Life was a phenomenal essay collection that shines a light on how some of us will always keep certain fictional characters close to our hearts because they offer us hope in difficult times and also bring joy to our lives. I can't recommend this one enough. It's heartfelt and moving throughout and was a real pleasure to read and review.

Bob Proehl's debut novel A Hundred Thousand Worlds is set in the world(s) of comic cons, following a cast of lovable loser creative types as they travel cross-country, finding love and hope along the way. So basically right in my wheelhouse. It's as if he wrote this one for me. It's also heartfelt and moving—are you sensing a theme?—and highly recommended. I was completely swept up in the book's easy charms and wonderfully sensitive exploration of creators, fans, friends, and family. One of the leads is modeled after Gail Simone, or at least her public persona, and she's a great, richly developed character that I'd follow into other books. Maybe Proehl will bring her back in the future. Keep an eye on Proehl, this is a fantastic debut.

Finally, I looked at how a strange pair of antiheroes from Marvel Comics, who debuted at just the right time for me and many others (the early 1980s, when we were just kids), helped a shy and sometimes awkward kid navigate the world just a tiny bit better. There's a little bit of analysis about what made (and still makes) Cloak and Dagger interesting and vital, too.

So, if you're into geek culture, then stop listening to the Nerdist podcast for just a few minutes and give these a read.

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